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7 Best Note Taking Apps for Students

7 Best Note Taking Apps for Students

There are so many note-taking apps for students and teachers to choose from! And they aren’t all equal. Some are better to save your notes, some are better for backing the notes up to the cloud and syncs them to your computer, tablet and smartphone. This is the reason why it’s so important that you pick the right one if you want to be an efficient note-taker. 

Taking notes can be a big challenge for students with learning and thinking differences. These note-taking apps can help. Whether you prefer to write with a stylus, type text, or draw with a finger, these best note taking apps makes the process as simple as using real paper.

Note-taking skills are critical in secondary school and college settings. Effective listening, clear handwriting, organized outlines and recording of key points are among the most critical note-taking skills. Skilled note taking enhances academic success. You don't want to feel constrained by your note-taking app in class. It's impossible to pick a single "best" note-taking app. Instead, we've made some suggestions that are tailored to specific users, devices and learning styles.

Here are the best note-taking apps for students, teachers and parents that will help them in all aspects of life, socially, at work and during study. 


( Android, iPhone, iPad )

Evernote is an impressive note taking app for students. Evernote lets students take notes, create to-do lists and organise their notes in one place. Evernote lets teachers to create and organize notebooks for faculty and team meetings, committees and various professional development. Its limitless uses range from planning a course to delivering a lesson plan to capturing feedback after class. It allows you to take notes, capture photos, create to-do lists, record voice reminders and makes these notes completely searchable, whether you are at school, at home, or on the go. Text notes can include embedded images, sketches, or recordings.

Evernote is a cross-platform note-taking app that’s great for processing hand-written notes and clipping articles from the web. This productivity tool can shift the way students manage information in school and the way teachers share it. Evernote can be used for creating student portfolios, lesson planning, classroom management, taking minutes of meeting and instruction. Available on the Web, Android, Mac, Windows, and iOS.

Teachers can also use Evernote for research. It allows them to collect a large number of resources without having to spend the time to fully read each one to decide if it is worth printing or bookmarking. They can also add their own notes and comments so that they can remember how they might want to apply the information. It is extremely user friendly, as long as you install the web clipper. Just right click and clip! Evernote free plan has a 60MB upload limit per month. Evernote is one of the note taking apps available across multiple devices such as Windows, Mac, iOS, or Android.

Price: Free (premium features are available)

Available for: Android, iOS, macOS, web, Windows

Download Evernote


( iPhone, iPad )

Notability is one of the most versatile apps available for note taking. This note taking app can be used in schools, home or at work. You can type or write notes on notebooks and organize them into folders inside the app. However, it also lets you annotate PDFs, which can be great for grading student papers. Notability is a fun tool for taking and organizing notes. Using this app, you can use multicolored pens, brushes and highlighters for most of your college work.

With Notability, you can type text, drag and drop images and file attachments into notes, record audio and take notes at the same time. So, you could be having a reading conference with a student, or testing their reading fluency with the audio recorder, while taking notes at the same time on your iPad. Notability is the best app for taking notes with Apple Pencil when used on either an iPad Pro or an iPad (6th generation and up). This feature can be useful for writing notes in lectures or sketching objects when on a field trip.

The ability to record, draw and take notes makes this app my favorite. This app stands out because of the workflows that teachers and students can create in order to retrieve, annotate and submit work. Notability allows for integrations with Dropbox, Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive. If teachers set up a shared folder with their class via Google Drive, students can access their documents, annotate them and push them back to their teacher via a privately shared folder. Also, students can open PDFs from any website in Notability and annotate directly on the PDF.

Price: $8.99

Available for: iOS, macOS

Download Notability

Zoho Notebook

( Android, iPhone, iPad )

Zoho Notebook is a free note taking app that gives you virtual notebooks with designer covers to store card style notes. The covers make it easy to segregate and identify different notebooks. You can also choose fonts, font size and colours as per your preference. 

The app lets you create notes in 6 categories: text notes, checklists, audio notes, photo notes, sketches and document notes. On iOS, the app integrates with Siri. You can ask Siri to search through notes, for instance. You also get tags for sorting and organizing your notes, plus options for sharing and collaborating with others. 

If you want to have your notes synced across your devices, you need to sign-up for a free account. Its not mandatory to sign up if you don't want to back up online and only want to keep notes on your current device. Overall, the free study notes app gets our recommendation to students if you are looking for a simple yet feature-rich notes app.

Price: Free

Available for: Android, iOS, macOS, web, Windows, Linux

Download Zoho Notebook


( iPhone, iPad )

Bear is one of the best note taking app for Mac, iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch for writers and note-takers. If you are looking for a replacement for Evernote or Apple Notes, then Bear is definitely one that you should take a look at, though it may not be for everyone.

Bear is downright beautiful and one of the prettier writing apps I’ve had the pleasure of using. Like most writing apps, Bear is composed of three parts: the Sidebar (on the left), the Notes List (in the middle), and the Text Editor (on the right). 

Bear doesn’t provide this notebook system. Instead, you can use a tag system (like Evernote) to manage your notes. But you can easily mimic the notebook format by using sub tag. The todo is one another nice features of Bear. You can create a task just by highlighting a line, and clicking on T. You can also move the task wherever you want in your notes. While it won’t replace task manager apps like Todoist, Wunderlist, Trello, etc., it can be convenient to have this in your notes.

Bear if you are a writer and want a simple, clean, and fast writing app that is super flexible and just works. You can find Bear – beautiful writing app for notes and prose on the App Store as a universal app for the iPhone and iPad for free.

Price: Free (premium features are available)

Available for: iOS, macOS

Download Bear


( Android, iPhone, iPad )

This great note taking app for students is best for quick notes and setting up reminders. Simplenote is a simple but neat way to coordinate all of your notes. Very simple in design, but the app allows you to add notes, add tags, share notes and make lists + tasks + reminders. 

Simplenote allows you to save notes in plain text. All you need to do is sign up for an account and you can start using it right away. Recently Simplenote has added markdown syntax. Simplenotes’ synchronization is blazing fast. Changes you make on other devices will sync nearly instantly on other devices. There’s not too much functionality around everything… but more of a blank slate approach. There's no rich text formatting, no image uploads, and no file attachments.

Price: Free

Available for: Android, iOS, macOS, web, Windows

Download Simplenote

Microsoft OneNote for iPad

( iPhone, iPad )

OneNote is a digital note-taking app that Microsoft provides to schools to create interactive collaboration sites with their students where teachers can place notes with school assignments and students use it because it facilitates the taking of notes, the collection of information. The app is best for students for any form of note-taking including mixing different recording forms. It also allows students to place notes on pages, add drawings, diagrams, audio or video recordings, and images.

Microsoft Onenote is a free app for notetaking. With OneNote, you get unlimited devices - a feature that other note-taking apps, like Evernote and Bear, keep behind a premium subscription. With OneNote you can take with you almost anywhere your class notes, work notes, articles, drawings, the shopping list. You can type, write by hand (using a stylus), clip Web pages and even scan handwritten notes or pages. Since it's a part of Microsoft's Office suite, OneNote plays well with applications such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint. This study notes app is available across all major platforms such as iOS and Android. 

Price: Free

Available for: Android, iOS, macOS, web, Windows

Download Microsoft OneNote

Apple Notes

( iPhone, iPad )

Apple Notes is a best ready-to-go iOS note taking app for Apple enthusiasts. If you're looking for an easy-to-use note taking app that's ready to go, Apple Notes is an attractive option.

Apple Notes can capture rich text and mixed media notes from practically any corner of the iOS operating system. These notes can also contain checklists, tables, images, Apple Maps locations, audio recordings, and document scans by way of the included document scanner.

Your notes are organized into a system of folders of your choosing. Subfolders can be created, but not on iOS devices. This app can also sync with iCloud, making all of your notes available across multiple devices. Apple Notes offers solid formatting features and allows cross-platform editing via the browser.

Price: Free (premium features for additional storage are available)

Available for: iOS, macOS

Download Apple Notes

Google Keep

( Android, iPhone, iPad )

Google Keep is a free note taking app best suited for lightweight users. Creating a note is easy - you can type, draw, or add an image (on mobile, you can even use your voice). If you use the Google Keep Chrome extension, you can save URLs, text, and images as you browse the web. Google Keep offers a basic, cross-platform note-taking app that plays well with other Google tools. In Gmail, Google Calendar, or Google Drive, or in a file in Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides, you can open a Google Keep sidebar to view your existing notes or create a new one. 

Everything you save in Google Keep stays synced across multiple devices that you use. One of the greatest benefits of Keep is its seamless integration with the entire Google ecosystem. The Google Keep interface looks exactly like digitized Post-it Notes.

Price: Free

Available for: Android, iOS, macOS, web, Windows

Download Google Keep

Boostnote is a prime example of a note taking app for coders. It doesn’t have all the features of a modern note-taking app (e.g. it has Markdown formatting and folder-based organization but lacks web clipping or handwritten notes) but does have what all programmers love: snippets! Boostnote is used for creating any kind of text document - or snippet note, which simply gives you a text editor for code. 

You can embed code blocks directly within normal notes, and you can create separate snippet-type notes that are specifically for collecting and grouping multiple code blocks in a single note. It also supports checkbox-based lists for task management.

Price: Free 

Available for: macOS, Windows, Linux

Download Boostnote