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iPad Apps for Researching, Organizing, and Writing Papers

Streamlining your learning with technology makes education work seamlessly from any of your devices whether it is an iPhone, iPod, iPad, or the computer.  There are an overwhelming number of apps available for students to try as part of their work process.

Some resources that are valuable and worthwhile whether you are a freshman or working on your doctorate that we recommend are:

1.  GoodReader for iPad:  GoodReader is a mulit-tasking tool that supports large text and PDF files, syncs with remote servers, and works with .doc, .ppt, .xls, iWork, HTML and Safari webarchives, high resolution images, and audio and video.  This app, also allows you the opportunity to annotate your documents or PDF’s, manage the files, transfer files, sync files and folders, zoom, do a text search, and do a quick hyperlink search in your PDF’s.  Cost: $4.99

2.  Tap-Dictionary:  Works with the Safari web browser and gets dictionary definitions with the tap of a finger.  This app will not make you switch applications to find the definition.  It instantly finds the definition while you browse the web.  Tap-dictionary will pronounce the word in 56 different languages.  Cost: $.99

3.  Remember the Milk:  This utility app lets you take your to do list anywhere.  There are a variety of versions for the iPod, iPhone,and iPad.  The app also works with your online version that you sync with your calendars at  This app lets you add and complete tasks on the go, sync with your online version, organize priorities, due dates, search, receive reminders by email SMS and IM and much more.  Cost: Free

4.  Dropbox:  Once you download this feature to your computer and purchase the app on your iPad or iPhone you have the ability to save and open or share documents, photos, or videos anywhere  and at anytime.  The best thing about the dropbox account is that you can save, share, or email anything from or to the dropbox account at any time.  Cost: Free

5.  Dropvox:  Dropvox records audio and sends it directly to your dropbox account.    It can be used to capture any audio (e.g. interviews, memos, or lectures, ets.) In addition, you can set the audio to start recording immediately when dropvox is launched or continue recording in the background.    Cost: $1.99

Taken from Dr. Blog, PhD., this site shares information about apps for research with a focus on obtaining a PhD., but has many apps that are valid for everyone.

One of the most difficult things you can do academically is to get a PhD degree. There are a lot of tough tasks you have to complete in order to be awarded this high degree — including writing research papers. Indeed, anyone on a Ph.D. track knows that it is impossible to get through your schooling without writing several papers. And, of course, a Ph.D. dissertation is a research paper on a massive scale.

If you are looking for ways to improve your ability to write research papers, you are in luck. Technology makes it simple to get help with research papers. If you have an iPad, you can get help writing your research paper.” –from

The link for this site is:


Search Google Scholar Effectively

How many times have you searched endlessly for scholarly resources and found your searches inadequate?  Did you know that Google Scholar is a great tool and a useful enhancement to other searches in Proquest, Eric, and any of the other journal sites or databases?    Google Scholar is a separate tool in Google and is meant to be a place to research peer-reviewed journal articles, court decisions, magazine articles, books, patents, editorials, and other similar written publications.  Be aware that it will find books and articles that may or may not be peer reviewed.

Google Search

More  Scholar

In order to start your search in Google:

  1. Open the main search page and locate the upper left hand corner where it says more and click onthe down arrow to the right of it.
  2. Click on Scholar.
  3. Once you click on the link, Google Scholar is opened up.


Remember that it may be an additional resource to the other databases provided within the library research database for your school. Ask your school librarian if this resource is available to you.  There are times when you will look up an article or book that takes you to an outside resource that requires a fee for access.  Make sure you have accessed the information for Google Scholar through your library research database and if this continues to occur, speak to your Librarian as they may have a way to obtain the resource through your school library.

Search tips in Google

There are a variety of tips for searching the site that applies for any searches.  These shortcuts  work with many other search engines that are available in your university library and other search engines.

There are a number of little tricks that can be used to help create a better search.  The table below gives a number of the best tips that are useful. 

Modifier What it does What to type What you will get
“ ” searches for an exact phrase “assistive technology in education” results that include exact phrase “assistive technology in education”
excludes search results with a particular word or phrase bass -fishing results about bass that are not related to fishing
~ searches for a word and all its synonyms ~mobile phone results with the word “phone,” as well as, “cell,” “cellular,” etc.
OR searches for webpages that include either word vacation London OR Paris results with the word “vacation” and either “London” or “Paris”
searches for a range of numbers Willie Mays 1950…1960 results about Willie Mays during this time period
define: define a word or phrase define: plethora links to definitions of the word “plethora”
site: searches only particular websites global warming site:edu references to global warming found on .edu websites
link: searches for webpages that link to a particular website websites that link to the University of South Florida website
1+1 basic calculator functions 4+7, 30% of 55, 20^2, sqrt(4), etc. the answer
cm in foot converts unit of measure cm in foot, 28C in F, $ in pound, days in fortnight, miles in league, mph in speed of light, etc. the converted answer

For more search tips to use in Google Scholar, follow this link

There are many posters that librarians or teachers can post in the classroom or library to remind students of the various methods of searching the database and finding the specific information for a research project or paper. One is linked below.

8.5″x11″ Poster

Google Scholar Email Alerts

Email alerts are a tool that can be used to continue receiving information as it becomes available.  Once you are inside a search, click on the envelope icon on the green bar that says create email alert and a new window opens where you can place any email or your Gmail address.  Once this is done, any new papers, articles, or other items that fit into the search parameters is published, the information will be sent to the specified email.

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