6 Free Online Student Planners That Increase Productivity

Read Time: 4 minutes

Franchesca Tan

Franchesca Tan

Updated: Feb 15, 2024

A person looking at their busy calendar

Students are constantly balancing coursework, extracurricular activities and personal commitments yet, at times, still feel unproductive and overwhelmed. Since the option of slimming down a schedule isn’t always available, the importance of effective planning cannot be overstated.

Successful students recognize that a well-organized schedule is key to managing their diverse responsibilities and achieving their goals. They plan well and ahead of time. With advancing technology, traditional paper planners and sticky notes are being replaced by innovative online planning tools—tools that can be used to increase productivity.

So what exactly is a student planner and how can one use it for success? Let's explore these topics along with why using a digital planner can benefit students beyond designing a course schedule. We’ll also share our top six picks on online tools and give tips to help you pick the right one for you. 

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What Is a Student Planner?

A student planner is a system that helps students organize their academic and personal schedules. They can come in analog or digital forms, ranging from printable calendars and notebooks to online calendars and automation systems. Student planners come in a variety of formats—time-based such as weekly or monthly views, task-based like bulleted points and checklists or a mixture of both.

Why online student planners are effective

As most students already use laptops and other digital devices, embracing online student planners can enhance productivity, reduce stress and support the complexities of student life with greater ease and efficiency. These tools not only facilitate better time management but also encourage a proactive approach to academic and personal planning, laying the foundation for success in both educational pursuits and beyond.

Going beyond calendar functionalities, online student planners or college schedule makers allow users to set deadlines, prioritize tasks, manage assignments and even collaborate on group projects. The right student planner acts as a personal assistant, helping students stay on top of their responsibilities and manage their time effectively.

How to use student planners for success

While digital solutions offer more than just convenience, in the end, a tool is just a tool and it depends on who is using it and how they’re using it. 

To get the most out of student planners, make sure to regularly update and review planners to keep them current. Prioritize tasks based on urgency and importance then set realistic deadlines and reminders to avoid last-minute rushes. Take some time to explore features and functionalities that can enhance and speed up the planning process. For example, use the planner's collaboration features for group projects and integrate it with other digital tools and apps in the market.

6 Free Online Student Planners

We’ve selected the following tools based on their availability across platforms, flexible pricing options, ease-of-use and adoption in the market. These tools are also often used in the workplace, therefore giving students a head-start by using these software first-hand. Google Tasks

Google Tasks is a straightforward task management tool that integrates seamlessly with Google Calendar and Gmail. It's ideal for students who need a simple, no-frills solution to track their to-dos and deadlines. Available on web and mobile, Google Tasks allows users to create lists, add tasks and set deadlines directly from their email or calendar.

Miro

Miro is a versatile online whiteboard designed for visual planning and collaboration. It's perfect for students who prefer mind mapping and brainstorming to organize their thoughts and projects. With its intuitive design and collaborative features, Miro is an excellent tool for group assignments and personal planning alike. Miro offers a multitude of templates such as the weekly planner.

Notion

Notion is an all-in-one workspace where students can write, plan, collaborate, and get organized. It combines note-taking, task management, databases and calendars, making it a powerful tool for students to manage every aspect of their academic life. Notion also has AI features and offers customization options to cater to various planning styles and needs. Similarly, Notion templates are available to download online.

Doodle

Doodle stands out for its ability to simplify scheduling meetings and events. It's particularly useful for students who need to organize group study sessions, project meetings or any event involving multiple participants. Doodle integrates with many online calendar apps like Google Calendar, allowing students to automatically overlay their tasks and appointments to find the best time for everyone.

Microsoft To Do

Microsoft To Do is a task management app that helps students stay organized and manage their day-to-day. With features like task lists, reminders, due dates, and notes, it's a comprehensive tool for personal and academic planning. Its integration with Microsoft Office apps enhances its utility for students embedded in the Microsoft ecosystem.

Trello

Trello offers a flexible and visual way to manage projects and tasks through its card-based system. Ideal for students who thrive on visual organization, Trello's boards, lists, and cards enable users to organize and prioritize their projects in a fun, flexible, and rewarding way. 

Whether it's managing individual assignments, tracking group project progress, or planning a study schedule, Trello's features make it easy to keep everything organized and accessible. The ability to add due dates, checklists, attachments, and collaborate with others makes Trello a powerful tool for students looking to keep their academic life streamlined and on track.

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The best student planner 

The shift towards digital planning tools offers students unprecedented convenience and efficiency. Choosing the right student planner can transform academic planning, increase productivity, and reduce stress. 

Whether you prefer the collaborative whiteboard features of Miro, the simplicity of Google Tasks, the all-in-one workspace of Notion, the scheduling prowess of Doodle, the comprehensive features of Microsoft To Do, or the visualization of Trello, there's a tool out there to meet your planning needs. 

Give these tools a go, try using them together and see what works best for your needs. After all, the best student planner is the one you use consistently to achieve your goals.

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