From Flash Drives to the Cloud: How Virtual Memory is Benefiting Students

Students are constantly on the move – traveling back and forth to school to attend class, meeting with student groups and organizations on-and-off-campus, all while balancing other commitments, such as work and family. To be successful in anything, it’s important to be organized. It’s all about being as efficient as possible and working smarter.

By utilizing the cloud, or cloud computing, everything can be stored in one place, and students can effectively organize and share documents, presentations and ideas. If you’ve emailed something to yourself so that you can access a document from home (versus work or school), you are already using a form of cloud computing.

The idea is that by utilizing the cloud, students can access items from anywhere on any device, allowing for maximum organization, collaboration capabilities and efficiency.

Have you ever had to work on a group project or presentation? If so, you’ve experienced how incredibly difficult it can be to compile slides and documents. Storing everything on the cloud can alleviate this issue. Fumbling to compile files creates an environment for mistakes and stress – neither of which is necessary.

In addition, most students are familiar with using a USB flash drive; however, even with the large storage capabilities and portability the device offers, there are still limitations. There is a limited amount of space which can be an issue when working with high resolution pictures or documents.

Also, USB flash drives can also be misplaced or forgotten, which is unfortunate if you need it for class, group work or a presentation. Students using the cloud have unlimited space to store documents on the Internet, there is no need to worry about backing items up as they are already saved on multiple servers around the world, and best of all, you cannot lose or misplace the cloud.

As long as students are able to access the Internet, they have access to their work.

So, where can students start storing documents if email storage is just the beginning of cloud computing?

  • Try Google Apps Standard, which is a cloud-based productivity suite that helps you connect with your team and get work done from anywhere on smartphones, tablets, Mac’s, PC’s, notebooks, etc. This is free for up to 50 users. Students can manage contacts, calendars and documents.
  • Google Docs saves you from needing to remember which computer, file, drive or USB flash drive you saved your final paper on. Google Docs also allows you to share documents with specific individuals, groups or make them public. Since all of the information is centralized, you can actually work on the same document with a group of people at the same time. This is an amazing benefit for group projects.
  • Google Notebook allows students to create mobile locations for notes, which is great for organizing, safekeeping and sharing.

Ultimately, by using the cloud, students can store data that will be useful throughout their entire academic career. The resources that you’ve created, organized and stored will also help you launch into a successful professional career.

Stacey Ommen

Stacey Ommen is an Admissions Manager for the School of Business at Rasmussen College in Tampa, Fla. She has worked in higher education for nearly four years. Stacey also has a B.S. in Marketing from St. Cloud State University.

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