Heading off to university this fall? You probably have a lot on your mind, be it tuition fees, tough courses and perhaps living on your own for the first time (hello, Ramen noodles). The last things you should be worrying about are the little details, like getting around campus, finding the library or missing out on important school news, events and key contacts.
To help out, we’ve rolled up our sleeves and put this list of university apps through the ringer to see which ones make the grade. Sorry if we’ve missed yours, there were a lot out there and these represent the ones we feel are done right. We hope they’re helpful.
The Official University of Western Ontario app [https://www.uwo.ca/its/mobile-doc/] gives UWO students a ton of information at their fingertips. This includes location info, fast facts, photos and contact details for each of Western’s dozen faculties; a campus events calendar and full directory search (students and faculty/staff). It features Google-based campus maps and an alumni page with a digital version of The Gazette student newspaper, donations guidance, branch info and more. Also, be sure to check under the Campus Event tab for on-campus service disruptions. The iWestern app is free for all platforms.
Whether you’re a prospective or enrolled student, the free University of British Columbia app for iPhone and Android is packed with info and helpful multi-media. For example, you can access up-to-date event news from around campus or find where you’re going with the list of locations and maps (for both Vancouver and Okanagan). Prospective students can watch videos, view photos and read about UBC’s undergraduate program information. The app was also created for faculty and staff, too.
iOS – Free
As the name of the app suggests, this free download is more for parents of students than students themselves. McGill Parents for iOS devices offers main nine tabs on its main page for quick access to school news, a campus tour, events calendar, where to stay in Montreal, athletics info, a McGill parents group on Facebook, real-time weather, and so on. Be aware, however, most of the sections require an internet connection.
University of Calgary
Android – Free
Whether it’s where to get the best breakfast on- or off-campus, tips to speeding up student loan payments or the latest in news and events, 4abyte’s free U of Calgary Student Success Centre app for iPhone or Android is a must-have tool for University of Calgary students. Cleverly designed, simply tap one of the large icons at the bottom of the splash page to access the area you want: News, SSC Today, Events and Appointments (the latter of which requires you to log into your U of C account).
The Queen’s Journal
Android – Free
Available for free for iPhone and Android users, The Queen’s Journal is a pocket-sized version of the completely student-run newspaper at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. Founded in 1873, the award-winning paper looks great on smartphones or tablets (it’s optimized for both form factors), and features many insightful articles and editorials, and photos, too. If there’s something you want to share, tap to post to Facebook or Twitter or send via email or text message. Each article also has a “Discuss” to voice your opinion or chat with others on the topic at hand.
iOS – 99¢
If you’re interested in an app that covers all major Canadian universities, consider this 99-cent iPhone download from a company called MoneyTree Online Services. All listed universities include map locations, school information, year established, number of undergrads and postgrads, photos, and access to the school’s official websites. From U of Alberta to York U, the app also includes many French-based universities, such as Université de Montréal and Laval U. Android users might opt for Universities, a free app from developers Das & Kalyan.