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Tools You Need: Evernote for Academics

Updated: Jun 30, 2023

We're here to help suggest some tips and tools to help you work smarter and lean into this new years with greater intentionality and productivity. Let me introduce you to Evernote, the digital tool that helps you tackle your notes, schedule and tasks all under one roof. I've put the hours in with Evernote and haven't looked back since and I plan to continue using the tool in 2022. So here is a run-down in case you want to change up your note-taking approach too.

What are the main features of Evernote?

So currently, I am on the premium membership. It's does everything I need it to do and costs little more than a coffee a month - it probably saves me time to enjoy more coffee - like my logic here? So there are a few wins with the platform I want to point out.

Tasks: I love writing notes but hate the aftermath of working from a notebook. I'm scrappy and thoughts lose their organised form very quickly. With Evernote, I can open a note and add a dedicated task within that note. Nothing huge there. But here is the win, your tasks also get added to a master task list which you can access outside of that note. I love this feature. It allows me to focus in meetings organise tasks but I can also view the bigger picture through my master to-do list at the start of the week. With tasks, you can add deadlines, assign the task, flag it and add reminders.

Notes - the tag feature is great (it helps you to stay focused on your note-taking but you can create connections with other themes and ideas too). It's a nice way to join the dots with different notes but still be able to dive into the detail. Now there is something to be said for manually taking notes with a paper and pen and I do still jump back to that ever so often but I find it great when I can take a snap of my notebook and attach it to my Evernote note - best of both.

The dashboard: this is such a powerful tool and a great first window on your morning desktop - see your schedule (yep just plug in your diary), see your master task list, access your most recent notes all with a click or two.

The above is just scratching the surface but what I would say is that these tools are meant to help you work smarter so they should save you time not add to it or become a chore. If you are serial paper and pen note taker it's worth exploring the hybrid benefits of Evernote. Evernote benefits from full sync so you are always up to date regardless of device.

Quick use functions - I have my Evernote set up so I can add tasks and notes quickly on the go. As someone who started out on Apple Notes for that sole purpose, Evernote gives you that instant accessibility, it's a great tool to get stuff out of your head but importantly feed those notes into a more organised and holistic structure. There is also an option to send emails direct to your Evernote account.

Device usability?

Download to your Mac as an app (if you’re one of those Microsoft types, respect - I struggle to find my way around a MS desktop these days), via the app on your iPhone, your tablet and if all fails, you can access online via the Evernote website. This was key for me as one of my work devices does not offer full flexibility to download apps I choose.

Getting started?

If you are juggling a large volume of tasks and need to be able to focus on each one Evernote gives you the space to do it. I find it great for managing teams as I can keep structured running notes with colleague projects and activities so I don't drop the ball and can easily pick up where I left off. The free Evernote tool is great to test out but I would recommend the personal subscription at £5.99 for greater customisation and the fact you can sync across unlimited devices. That does the job for me. I have two laptops for work, two mobiles, an IPad and so far Evernote is the only tool that has worked seamlessly for me and not upset those IT folks. For me, right now, Evernote is here to stay.

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