Free resources that can actually help you complete any boring paper
It’s a mistake to believe that only essays are a chore. When you enter the university, you quickly discover that research projects and literature reviews are just as annoying, if not devastating. So, what can students do about it except pulling all-nighters and hoping for the best?
Well, you can always rely on digital writing tools! Luckily, there are lots of free and useful websites you can rely on when it comes to checking your grammar, eliminating tautology, and making your sentences more readable.
We’ve gathered some of the best free resources to make your writing process easier! Just give them a try!
1. Story Toolz
The name of this site may look a bit cheesy, but it’s a useful tool if you’ve got a creative college assignment on your hands. With the help of a story idea generator, random conflict generator, and cliche buster, you can craft a new plot in a blink of an eye! There are also more boring but necessary services, such as readability and word count meters. All you need to catch your muse, in one place.
This one claims you’ll learn any word you’ll look up forever. While this might be a bit of an exaggeration, this resource is great for the times when you struggle with tautology while writing an essay. This website acknowledges that not all students are literary professionals and happily teaches all visitors new words. The fun part is you can always get a random and fancy term by clicking a short link under the search bar.
As the name suggests, this site is similar to a directory that contains quite a few news articles. They are mostly legit and informative, so they may be useful in your writing process. With this tool, all you have to do to get more knowledge from different sources is enter your keyword. After testing this search system, we can confirm that the more specific you are, the more chances you have to find what you really need.
Everybody knows about this online corrector for all kinds of written content. While the ads for it may be annoying, it’s still a cool tool for catching typos and removing wordy constructions from your academic work. It’s really one of the most useful apps for school or university. The only downside is that it will occasionally fix the same mistake back and forth, showing different reasons. In such cases, it’s better to rewrite the entire sentence.
This one is also nice for learning, especially when you have no strength or time to shift your attention from your paper before proofreading it. This is one of the simpler tools, so you might find it works better for you than Grammarly. Like its more well-advertised counterpart, SpellChecker is good for any project that has enough text to check for spelling and grammar errors.
If you want to hold an online video chat for a group of friends to guide each other while completing a group project, this is a perfect option! It works like a Discord channel, except the integration with your emails and Google Sheets allows faster and easier access to the right materials. Simple and convenient.
In the academic world, you need to check even the smallest essays for plagiarism. There’s no worse situation than having accidental “stolen content” in your work, so you need a reliable tool to prevent that. Plagiarism Checker is one of the first on the list for this purpose. It’s simple, fast, and designed solely to analyze every sentence for possible plagiarism.
If you need a credible article from a respectable journal but search engines only give you weird sites, Zotero is what you need. This tool allows you to find, save, and organize scientific resources, saving you time and effort. So, the next time your prof asks you to write a 5-page essay about the bookkeeping staff of an octopus shelter somewhere in Asia, Zotero might help you.
This is another app for finding and saving reliable sources, but this one has a great advantage. Specifically, JabRef can retrieve full information about the article or book and its author by DOI or ISBN number. If you doubt your citing and formatting skills, you can use this tool for sure. After all, science requires precision.
Didn’t you ever wish someone would post a complete guide to different formats and types of research papers online? Well, this website has granted this wish that every student probably has! It’s complete with the basics of the most popular formats like MLA and APA and section-by-section guide to creating research.
11. Grammar Girl
This is the place where you’ll find out a bit about everything, whether you want tips about the best careers you can pursue or some study advice. Those small tips can really boost your knowledge and inspire you when you most need it. All you need to do is read fun articles. Perfect for the breaks between online classes!
This informational tool is by the academic community of the Empire State University. Here, you can learn the meaning of the writing terms, look at paper types, and discover all the steps of the essay creation process. You’ll need to click quite a few hyperlinks before you can read anything, but the information you’ll get will be as specific as possible.
This is essentially a writing help center where you can go after lessons, but online. Aside from writing advice, its resources include the articles that support you when finding a strategy for your essay. Although reading them isn’t the same as attending an introductory course at your university, they’re still incredibly useful.
14. Purdue Owl
This one is a go-to option for students who need to cite some info accurately, and fast. It can help create academic quotations for books, articles, websites, movies—you name it! But did you know that this Owl has detailed writing guides that help you avoid plagiarism and sound more academic? Those can be useful when you’re not sure how to phrase your thoughts.
15. Excel Easy
If you have trouble using Sheets in academy, but your scholarships depend on your skills, we’ve got good news for you. Excel Easy explains and shows all the functions of this app, from the simplest ones to the most complex. On top of that, it literally contains 300 examples to help you out!
16. Khan Academy
This is one of the best nonprofit websites for free education. It has courses on economics, computations, arts, and more. If you’ve missed a class, but you still need to write papers on a set of class-connected topics, there’s a good chance you’ll find trusted materials there. All you need to do is reach out and search.
It’s always harder to find class-tested educational resources for science subjects. Whether it’s because they’re connected to industry or because they’re just (arguably) harder to grasp than humanities, that’s how it is. Science Prof challenges this tendency by giving you a ton of free materials for educators and students. Just download and enjoy.
If you want some tech insights from experienced professionals or just want an educational breather before editing your essay, this is what you need. TED-ED has interesting lessons organized by age and subjects, as well as a community insights section. The only downside is you might forget about time while browsing it.
The name is pretty self-explanatory. This useful website enables you to find exclusively credible articles, connect with your research community, and measure your impact as a scientist. Boasting a community of 25 million scientists, ResearchGate is a great opportunity to save time and money for scholars from all over the world.
This platform is like a nice combination of most tools we’ve seen so far. It includes curated online learning materials and creation tools, including a website builder. One of the greatest things about it is that you can add materials there yourself, so most of what you can find is for students, by students.
One of the great things about this site is that you can choose a language other than English. That feature makes Wikiversity especially useful for international students. You might think that it’s a mistake to expect too much from a free Wiki source, and you’re right. However, this resource offers solid basic knowledge, and there are times when that’s the only thing you need.
22. Google Scholar
Speaking of basic literacy, Google Scholar is a resource that everybody knows. It’s more like web-searching software than a website. What’s cool about that is you’ll get scholarly articles from across the internet based on the keywords you type in. It’s simple to use and saves hours you’d spend searching for the same materials on regular Google.
If you’re tired of watching generic documentaries and looking for the right docs about your topic, you can try taking courses from this site. Although not all the materials are free, you can find the list of accessible resources and learn from them. It’s always better to rely on organized information if you want to avoid “watery essays” and excel in classes.
This one’s a golden classic for anyone who needs free ebooks. This site doesn’t have a ton of materials about mathematics or technology, but you’ll find everything you need for classic literature assignments. Sometimes, the best way to write a perfect essay is to read the right book, and Project Gutenberg is always there to help you do it.
Shaping your perfect writing toolkit
Which tools among all those options do you really need? Is it one of them? All of them? We know such decisions can be extremely hard to make. However, it’s not like you need to pick a set number of these resources before the rest vanishes into thin air.
We recommend that you choose the tools depending on the type of your assignment. For example, Google Scholar can be useful for research, StoryToolz can help make your presentations more readable. There are also some instruments that will fit any toolkit, like Plagiarism Checker or Purdue Owl.