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10 Tools & Resources Every Freshmen Needs to Know

10 Tools & Resources Every Freshmen Needs to Know

You will be heading off to college in just a few short weeks, and you need to know that you are going to have the best year possible. This means that you need to find ways to keep organized, get motivated, and learn the best tools and shortcuts that will help you to get great grades and have an awesome college experience. So, check out these 10 sites that every freshmen needs to know.

1. Habitica

habitica

    This is a great productivity tool that helps you to build good study and other habits. It used to be HabitRPG, and this site will help you get into good habits and learn how to avoid getting into bad habits.

    2. Wolfram Alpha

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    wolfram

      Here is a site that can calculate just about any math problem and give you data on loads of things (include all of the data you need for Pokemon). You will find step-by-step instructions for math problems. There is a fee to get these solutions, but if you want to get the best marks, it is definitely worth it.

      3. Coggle

      coggle

        One of the best ways to take notes is to use mind mapping, and there are tools that can help. This tool is one of the best, and it lives right in your browser so you can access it at any given time.

        4. StudentRate

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        student rate

          You likely don’t have a huge spending budget, so this site can help you get the best deals on everything you need. Find the best prices and discounts on clothing, textbooks, electronic devices, travel, and more. Save money and find the things you want and need without having to visit any stores until you are ready to buy something.

          5. LookSharp

          looksharp

            There is going to come a time when you have to go out and get a job. While this is not always as easy as it looks, there are ways to make the process go as smoothly as possible. This site lets you find internships and entry-level jobs that meet your interests, skills, education, etc.

            6. Written Kitten

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            kitten

              Writing is going to be a lot easier with this tool. You can set a target word count, and you will see a new picture of a cat when you hit that count (200 words or more to see the cat). You will never be below the required word count again with Written Kitten.

              7. Prezi

              prezi

                Public speaking can be particularly nerve wracking, but this tool can help. It will give you amazing graphics and layouts that are professional. Your professors will be so impressed with your presentations that they won’t notice that you are reading directly from your notes.

                8. Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk

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                lifehack

                  If you have a friend who loves drinking and driving be sure to read this post on how to help them. The article contains useful tips and information (some suggested by DWI lawyer from Scheiner Law) on how to prevent an accident.

                  9. Keep Me Out

                  keep me out

                    It isn’t always easy to avoid social media when you are trying to study and do homework. It is so tempting to just go in and check messages, and then end up spending hours playing games and chatting. This site will help you to avoid this by keeping you from being able to access your favorite websites for certain periods of time that you set.

                    10. Alarmy

                    alarmy

                      Do you have trouble getting to classes on time and end up missing important lectures? This can be avoided when you use this tool. It is also a great app for those who just can’t resist hitting that snooze button a few times before actually crawling out of bed, no matter how late they are.

                      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via pixabay.com

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                      Jane Hurst

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                      Last Updated on December 2, 2018

                      7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

                      7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

                      When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

                      You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

                      1. Connecting them with each other

                      Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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                      It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

                      2. Connect with their emotions

                      Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

                      For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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                      3. Keep going back to the beginning

                      Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

                      On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

                      4. Link to your audience’s motivation

                      After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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                      Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

                      5. Entertain them

                      While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

                      Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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                      6. Appeal to loyalty

                      Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

                      In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

                      7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

                      Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

                      Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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