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mac (Archived) How to use Evernote effectively for College?

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Hi Everyone,

I am a first time user of Evernote. I have always heard about the app, and heard how highly people have talked about it. However, I am unsure of how to use the app effectively as a College student. I start my Bachelors degree in exactly one week and have been trying to further understand the app before that. I have searched YouTube, but have not found many helpful videos that talk about the College student. Most of the videos also are rather old, and I am sure that the desktop, as well as the IOS versions have had some major changes.

I don't fully understand the difference between the free version, and the premium version. Which would be best suited for a college student?

With Apple releasing iCloud and having their iWork suite sync across devices via the cloud, how is Evernote different? Before really looking into Evernote my plan was to just use Pages to take class notes, assignments, etc... That way they would just auto sync between my MacBook Pro, iPad, and iPhone. The only thing that I have always disliked about Pages is that you can not place a folder within a folder.

Speaking of Pages, does Evernote work with Pages? What I mean is that if I type up a research paper, could I store that paper in Evernote along with my research?

How reliable is Evernote? Does data get stored locally, as well as the cloud? Or is everything only saved on the cloud?

Any help and guidance that you guys can give me would be greatly appreciated. If you know of a great YouTube video that would help me that would also be amazing. With class starting on August 20th, I really want to be as organized as possible.

Thanks so much

Brian

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Hi Brian,

for a first step:

- buy yourself a scanner like ScanSnap and store _everything_ in evernote. I even scanned my books. But it might be wise to do the scanning after the course has been done. Some lecturer don't like Laptops in a auditorium. Paper based books are still required for tests with permission to use books and scripts.

- create a matching system of tags. For example a tag for each course and tags like 'book', 'note', 'idea', 'test','formulary'. You have to develop you own system. But It might be a good idea to create a note 'How I use my tags'.

IMO is EN not very useful in the beginning... You have to invest some time and thoughts in EN at before. The return of EN will come while your study progress.

EN can help you:

- to collect all the pieces of information you will get while you study

- all pieces will be collected at one place and will be easly to find.

- you can create a kind of wiki about you study. This wiki will help you to understand the relations between courses.

- you have a place to collect ideas, notes, links, book references, ... for your thesis

- and most important (but unfortunatly in German only): http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zettelkasten

A 'Zettelkasten' is a slip box to collect insights, ideas, facts, authors, proofs, ... and their relations and is for a lot of people the most important scientific tool. Famous users where example Jule Verne or Niclas Luhmann.

@Natives: A Zettelkasten ist very common in Germany. I guess it is well known in UK/US too. But what is the correct english term and is there a link or document which describes the use of a Zettelkasten in English?

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Hi Everyone,

I am a first time user of Evernote. I have always heard about the app, and heard how highly people have talked about it. However, I am unsure of how to use the app effectively as a College student. I start my Bachelors degree in exactly one week and have been trying to further understand the app before that. I have searched YouTube, but have not found many helpful videos that talk about the College student. Most of the videos also are rather old, and I am sure that the desktop, as well as the IOS versions have had some major changes.

I don't fully understand the difference between the free version, and the premium version. Which would be best suited for a college student?

With Apple releasing iCloud and having their iWork suite sync across devices via the cloud, how is Evernote different? Before really looking into Evernote my plan was to just use Pages to take class notes, assignments, etc... That way they would just auto sync between my MacBook Pro, iPad, and iPhone. The only thing that I have always disliked about Pages is that you can not place a folder within a folder.

Speaking of Pages, does Evernote work with Pages? What I mean is that if I type up a research paper, could I store that paper in Evernote along with my research?

How reliable is Evernote? Does data get stored locally, as well as the cloud? Or is everything only saved on the cloud?

Any help and guidance that you guys can give me would be greatly appreciated. If you know of a great YouTube video that would help me that would also be amazing. With class starting on August 20th, I really want to be as organized as possible.

Thanks so much

Brian

Hi. Welcome to the forums!

I have written about Evernote and academia on my site (http://www.princeton.edu/~cmayo/notebook.html), so I won't repeat all of that here (a search of the forums will turn up even more). I'll focus on the points you raised.

(1) Free or premium?

- Start free. If you hit your monthly upload limit, then buy a month of Premium. If you like it, keep paying. There are some important differences between the two, but in general, you get the same amount of functionality, so don't worry about the upgrade yet.

(2) How is Evernote different than other cloud products?

- Evernote is your external brain, and it tries to make you smarter.

- Dropbox is your virtual thumbdrive, and it tries to make you more productive.

- Apple iCloud and GDrive are workbenches in your shop (or meth labs in your laundry, if you are a Breaking Bad fan), where you can build stuff. They all have their uses. I am writing my PhD dissertation in Pages on the iPad. I'd be happy to talk with you more about iCloud and Pages by direct message.

(3) Can Evernote handle file format X?

- Evernote can HOLD any file format, including Pages. It CAN use the Pages app (assuming you have it installed on your device) to open a Pages file, and changes CAN be saved back into the file in Evernote (only if you are using the desktop), but Evernote itself does NOT contain the code to open every file type. More importantly, I would NOT recommend this except for occasional use. In general, Dropbox / iCloud are best for works in progress. Evernote is best for completed projects.

(4) How reliable is Evernote?

- Very reliable. All of your files are stored on the cloud in Evernote's servers. And, if you are using a desktop version (Mac or Windows), all of your files are also stored locally.

- I strongly recommend a backup service with versions like Time Machine. If you learn anything from NASA (besides how to properly land cars on Mars), it is the value of redundancy. Just do it. Thank me later.

(5) I need to get started ASAP!

- There are all sorts of organizational methodologies. I recommend my own, because it is simple and works with everything (see my site). But, more concretely speaking, go to iTunes U, download a lecture from a top university on a subject you are interested in, pull out your laptop, and spend an hour taking notes. See how it goes. Yes, this is how I spend my free time :)

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Hi Brian,

for a first step:

- buy yourself a scanner like ScanSnap and store _everything_ in evernote. I even scanned my books. But it might be wise to do the scanning after the course has been done. Some lecturer don't like Laptops in a auditorium. Paper based books are still required for tests with permission to use books and scripts.

- create a matching system of tags. For example a tag for each course and tags like 'book', 'note', 'idea', 'test','formulary'. You have to develop you own system. But It might be a good idea to create a note 'How I use my tags'.

IMO is EN not very useful in the beginning... You have to invest some time and thoughts in EN at before. The return of EN will come while your study progress.

EN can help you:

- to collect all the pieces of information you will get while you study

- all pieces will be collected at one place and will be easly to find.

- you can create a kind of wiki about you study. This wiki will help you to understand the relations between courses.

- you have a place to collect ideas, notes, links, book references, ... for your thesis

- and most important (but unfortunatly in German only): http://de.wikipedia....ki/Zettelkasten

A 'Zettelkasten' is a slip box to collect insights, ideas, facts, authors, proofs, ... and their relations and is for a lot of people the most important scientific tool. Famous users where example Jule Verne or Niclas Luhmann.

@Natives: A Zettelkasten ist very common in Germany. I guess it is well known in UK/US too. But what is the correct english term and is there a link or document which describes the use of a Zettelkasten in English?

Ganesha, I think in English a Zettelkasten is called a commonplace book. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonplace_book

Steven Johnson actually wrote a great piece about them, too: http://www.stevenberlinjohnson.com/2010/04/the-glass-box-and-the-commonplace-book.html

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