Marc Saltzman’s Top Tech Tips for Students (PLUS GIVEAWAY!)
It’s crazy to think that in grade three, my daughter already needs to be thinking about technology at school. Her teachers have given us a number of resources for teaching her to type properly, they have regular computer time, they work on tablets, and in grade two she was already creating PowerPoint presentations. When I tell her that I didn’t have the internet until I was in university, she’s totally blown away.
For older kids, technology is an absolutely necessity. High school and post-secondary students need to balance school workloads, extracurricular activities and more, so the tools they use to help keep everything running smoothly are imperative.
Marc Saltzman shares the following tech tips to help your student navigate their life effectively.
Back it up
There’s nothing worse than accidentally losing all your work – because of a hard drive crash, nasty virus or power surge. It’s crucial for students to back-up their important files – it’s not always possible to recover lost essays and presentations, and let’s be serious – the second draft is never as good as the original. Take advantage of free cloud services, such as OneDrive, which gives you 7 gigabytes of safe storage, allowing you to upload, share and edit files from PCs, phones and tablets in real-time. These services give students piece of mind, plus they can access their work anywhere, on any device.
The right stuff
You don’t need to be an A-student to know productivity and flexibility are a critical components of academic success. With busy class and after-school schedules, students need tools that help them make the most of study time and group work, wherever and whenever that may be.
Microsoft’s Office 365 Home ($99/year or $10/month) gives students tried and true programs like Word, Excel and PowerPoint, plus OneNote for note-taking and research, Outlook to manage email and calendars, OneDrive for storage and sharing, and Skype for Skype-to-Skype and Skype-to-phone calling.
Students can install Office 365 on up to five devices, be they PCs, Macs, iPads, Windows tablets or mobile phones, and you get four additional accounts – so parents can use it for organizing the household or working on the go. Each user also gets 1TB of cloud storage with OneDrive, which translates to 1 million Office documents and 175,000 photos!
Protect your mobile device
Be sure to put safeguards in place to keep your data safe. There are a number of free apps that can help you remotely lock, wipe clean or better yet, locate a missing smartphone or tablet.
Some options include Find My Phone (Windows Phone), Find My iPhone (iPhone), Android Device Manager (for Android) and BlackBerry Protect (BlackBerry) – but you need to set this up before it’s too late.
Parents should talk to kids about staying safe on-the-go. Whether it’s the school’s free wireless network or a local coffee shop, students should be careful when using public Wi-Fi, or “hotspots” – they’re not as secure as you might think. These open Wi-Fi connections are fine for research, checking your Facebook or reading emails, but resist the urge to do things like online banking or shopping.
Some Wi-Fi networks can appear to be legitimate — when in fact they’re a fake. Nearby criminals can create “rogue” networks that look legitimate but they’re out to defraud users. A good rule of thumb: when in doubt, check with the establishment to confirm their official network name.
Students can save money and space by purchasing a hybrid device that packs the power of a laptop in the body of a tablet. These computers come in a couple of flavours: lightweight tablet-first options, such as the Surface Pro 3, are great for doing all of the things we love to do on our tablets – watching videos; checking social feeds; playing games – but add a keyboard and you’re ready to work. It’s truly the best of both worlds.
The other option is often referred to as a 2-in-1 or convertible device. Most 2-in-1s resemble a laptop at first glance – equipped with a QWERTY keyboard and trackpad, attached to a screen – but when your schoolwork is done, the screen twists back, folds down or detaches from the keyboard altogether so you can use the device as a touchscreen tablet.
Here’s a little info about Office 365 Home:
• Office 365 Home enables you to install the latest full desktop version of Office applications, on up to 5 PCs or Macs, in addition to 5 Windows tablets or iPads—so you can use all the features offline as well as online.
• You can share your subscription benefits, such as installing the full Office applications and extra online storage, with 4 other family members, and sharing your subscription benefits across your household is simple, as well as a great value.
• You can purchase it for only $10/month or $99 for the year
• Office 365 includes full installed Office applications – Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher, and Access* so whether your kids are writing their book reports or essays in Word or building a class presentation in PowerPoint, Office 365 has all of the applications they need. OneNote is an awesome tool for students – it’s great for taking class notes and organizing research for projects.
• With an active Office 365 subscription, you never have to worry about upgrading your Office, because you always have access to the latest Office applications, features, and services.
So now that you’re all informed, how about winning a copy of Office 365 HOME (ARV $99? Enter below for your chance to win!