Students from across the University in different departments have shared their top tips when using technology to study.
This page summarises these tips so you can make the most of your University experience.
Learn how different file formats can help you!
The Best File Formats tutorial is full of things you didn't know! Once you've learned these tips, you'll be using them all the time.
I found the tutorial very helpful and was interesting to see how we can adapt the documents provided to best fit our needs. I struggled with reading research papers a lot this year as there is a lot of text in a very compact format; the information on text-to-speech would be helpful for this. All the information provided was new to me. The 2 tables on page 4 about “Reading PDF documents” and “Reading EPUBs” were very helpful as they were straightforward and easy to navigate.
I have learned a lot about how technology may improve reading by examining the many reading tools, including ePUB, HeadingsMap, SwiftRead, ScreenShader, BeeLine Reader, and Immersive Reader. These tools have helped me explore complicated documents more effectively and have taught me the value of flexibility and accessibility in reading resources. Magnification and reflow features have reduced eye fatigue and improved reading comfort. Additionally, the ability to hear text read aloud has helped me focus better and adapted to my learning style. These encounters have finally strengthened my understanding of how technology may improve reading experiences and make them more flexible and accessible. Every day, I am learning more and more about accessibility and learning tools in the apps and interfaces I use daily. It's actually more than what I use it for.
I personally did not know much about the ePUB, I thought it was only for the Apple products, but it turns out it has a lot of functionality other than being an Apple supported document type. ePUB files bring numerous positive impacts to the reading experience. Their flexibility ensures easy access across devices, while features like navigation by headings save time in navigating through documents. The ability to magnify and reflow text reduces eye strain, and customizable background colors enhance user comfort. Most notably, the option to listen to the text with read aloud features makes ePUBs highly accessible. Learning to use this feature is a positive skill since ePUBs are compatible with Apple's Book app which makes it a lot easier for those who are using Apple as their main phone. In summary, ePUB's adaptability and user-friendly features make it a powerful format that significantly improves the reading experience.
Nathan from the Department of Electronic Engineering shares his top tips:
Anna from the Maths Skills Centre shares her tips for sharing what's on your screen - ok, we know she's not a student, but the tips are really useful!
This could be useful to zoom in on part of your screen to take a screenshot, or to show to a tutor while maintaining social distance.
You can take a screenshot to create an image of what's on your screen - you can save this image or copy it into another document.
To take a screenshot on a Mac:
Rhys and Natassja from Economics tell us the tools they use to help with notetaking:
Rowan from Biochemistry shows us their favourite features in Read&Write:
It helps you to pick up mistakes really easily and just makes it much easier to check your spelling, check your grammar, check your style, check your sentence length. The screen masking tool highlight lines that I’m reading; this is particularly useful at night when I might be a little bit more tired and need a little more help to pick out my lines. – Rowan