Becoming a professional really begins before graduation. You have to start applying for jobs, making connections with those in the industry, and creating that perfect resume – and in most cases, this involves using the Internet in a smart way.
You need to be able to navigate your way around the web quickly and efficiently so you can hunt for a job while finishing that final term paper. This will be so much easier if you have the right browser extensions.
If you don’t know what a browser extension is, now’s your chance to learn. Here are three terms that are sometimes grouped together when discussing browser shortcuts and functionalities:
- Extension: Extensions add new features to a browser. An example of an extension would be a pop-up blocker. Extensions generally don’t cross over into different browsers. In other words, downloading a Firefox extension would not work if you were using Google Chrome.
- Add-on: This term refers to little pieces of code, or what look like little buttons, that are added onto a browser’s toolbar to help give you shortcuts to certain online programs. For example, I have a Buffer add-on that allows me to schedule tweets quickly and easily. Add-ons are usually browser specific, so an add-on that works on Firefox will likely not work if you’re using Chrome.
- Plug-in: This term refers to third-party software that enables you to interact with a certain program. A common plugin would be Adobe Flash Player or QuickTime to play videos.
Whether you realize it or not, you likely have extensions, add-ons, and plug-ins installed to your browser. The reason these terms are often used interchangeably is because each installation process is similar. All you need to do is Google whatever you want to add to your browser, and you’ll be directed straight to the page you need. Whether it’s an add-on or plug-in really doesn’t matter to the average user.
Today we’ll focus exclusively on extensions. As a recent college graduate, I know college students often take what they can get. Anything to make that term paper go faster and anything to make the weekend come sooner is accepted!
These extensions will help you study so you can move onto the more fun parts of being in college:
1. Strict Pomodoro: This extension helps a student focus on the task at hand. It allows you to set a timer and either block certain sites or allow only certain sites to be used during that block of time. This keeps students away from Facebook, Twitter and reading about the latest football injuries. This extension works with Google Chrome.
2. Wired-Marker: This extension allows a student to highlight things he/she reads online. More and more professors are beginning to send readings electronically, often forcing a student to either print out a huge 20-page packet for highlighting or forgo the highlighting altogether. This extension solves this problem. It works with Firefox.
3. DownThemAll!: Students often download a large number of programs and documents. This extension accelerates these downloads by up to four times, can download multiple parts of a file, and can pause files without losing data. This is a Firefox add-on.
4. Memorize!: This is probably one of the most helpful browser extensions around. A student can enter a list of questions that he/she needs to study, and then extension will have these questions pop up throughout the day while you’re surfing the Internet. How cool is that? The questions will stop when you get them all right or when you manually stop the extension.
5. Googlepedia: You will get Google and Wikipedia search results side by side with this extension. Although professors may not let you cite Wikipedia, it sure comes in handy when you need a little definition.
Different fields of study require different tools to help, but the extensions above work great for every college student in need of a little assistance.
Don’t forget that if you come across an extension that works for one browser, you can usually find an almost identical extension for other browsers.
Do you have a favorite browser extension that helps you in school? Share the link with us in the comments!
Amanda DiSilvestro is a writer on topics ranging from social media to human resources payroll services. She writes for an online resource that gives advice on topics including advice for college grads to small businesses and entrepreneurs for Resource Nation.