| 03.18.2018

BbLearn, UI app


Emily Vaarstra | rawr reviews

Walking around the University of Idaho campus, there are a majority of students with smartphones, tablets or other devices such as iPods. These devices have become  an integrated part of the advancing technological culture in which college students are submerged.

With this large focus on having everything at one’s fingertips, universities have joined the trend of creating apps where students can access essential school-specific tools at the touch of a screen.

There are three helpful apps available to UI students —Blackboard Mobile Learn app, the official University of Idaho app and the Outlook Web app to access Vandal mail accounts.

BbLearn app

The Blackboard Mobile Learn (BbLearn) app is a well-organized tool where students can access their classes and course content on the BbLearn website directly from their smartphone or tablet.

One of the best features for this app, especially for  Type-A personalities, is each class is color-coded on the dashboard. After touching the class of choice, there is access to all the same folders and discussion boards that are on the online Bblearn website.

Documents and PowerPoint presentations can be accessed directly from the app in a special BbLearn designated format. Students can also reply to discussion boards without opening up their laptop or using a computer.

Other useful BbLearn app features include receiving class announcements and grade access as well as a direct link to Dropbox.

University of Idaho app

The UI app has everything university related stuffed into one place. Surprisingly, it is easier than navigating  the actual UI website.

Students can access their grades, schedule, the directory, maps, news, announcements, calendars, pay stubs, Vandal athletics and the UI home page directly from the app’s start screen. Students can even sign into their Vandal account as soon as the app opens up.

Each tab is set in separate bars listed down the page. The tabs can be set in an icon view making navigation as easy as touching the tab of choice and getting a direct link from there. The app  saves students the extra clicking and searching it takes to navigate the website.

Outlook Web app

UI students know how important it is to be able to constantly access Vandal mail. Such as  when professors send out last minute emails that class is canceled or they provide essential links that are needed for the class that very day, and it is not fun being the only one who didn’t check their Vandal mail before showing up to class.

With the Outlook app, students have access to their Vandal mail immediately where they can open emails in their inbox and reply if necessary.

Students can also open up attachments from this app to read directly from their smartphone or tablet. There is even an option to organize emails into certain folders. The one downside is that you cannot open up drafts or trashed email in case you accidentally dumped an important email.

Vandal life can be  easier with these three easy-to-navigate and student-convenient apps. And with more and more college students using smartphones and devices every day, you don’t want to be left behind in this rapidly advancing technological world.

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