42 College Hacks Everyone Should Know By Senior Year

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This post is all about college hacks.

college hacks

Now that I am a senior in college, I realize just how much I didn't know going into my freshman year. I've learned SO many college hacks that would have made my life a million times easier if I would have learned them freshman or sophomore year of college.

I put a huge list together (and asked my friends too) of the best college hacks that we've learned the last four years.

These are the best college hacks that everyone should know about before their senior years.

College Hacks You NEED To Know:

1. Take advantage of student discounts! 

There are sooo many amazing student discounts available from some of your favorites places. This is my ultimate favorite college hack just because who doesn't love saving money?

I use almost all of these and it's saved me so much money. I am already sad that once I graduate I have to pay full price for all these services ugh. I'm hoping that I can make it last as long as possible ;). 

1. Spotify (this also includes Hulu!)

2. Apple Music

3. Amazon Prime Student 

4. Movie Theaters (like $6 Student Thursdays)

5. Museums 

6. Shopping! (especially online!)

2. Buy extra long chargers.

Seriously this has saved me so many times. There are never enough plugs, especially in dorm rooms and apartments, so having a long charging cord that can reach you is crucial. 

The worst is when you're studying or laying on the couch and all you want to do is scroll through your phone but it's about to die. And then your charger doesn't reach. 

A long phone charger will be something you realize you need way more than you would think trust me! 

3. Reheat pizza with a glass of water in the microwave to prevent soggy crust.

This is a drunk hack that you will appreciate at 2am after coming home from the bars.

I love leftover pizza as much as the next person but the WORST is when you reheat it and it gets all soggy. It just isn't the same. 

Don't worry... you'll never have to eat soggy leftover pizza again. This college hack is one of my favorites! Just fill a cup with a little water and put it in the microwave with the pizza and it soaks up any moisture. No more soggy crust! 

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4. Keep your dorm or apartment smelling fresh with a laundry sheet.

My least favorite thing is when I walk into my room and it smells bad. This hack is so easy and lasts so much longer than an air freshener. 

Just put a laundry sheet on a fan or your air conditioner and there you go! It smells so much better. 

5. Loft your bed for more storage.

Lofting your bed or using bed risers gives you so much extra storage! This college hack is so helpful especially when living in the dorm and basically no room to put anything. 

Being able to put a few more storage bins under your bed makes keeping things organized a lot easier. 

6. When giving a presentation, make a friend ask you a question you already know the answer too.

I absolutely hate public speaking so anything that makes it easier I am here for. There are usually Q&A portions after presentations so if you have a friend in class, definitely tell them to ask you a question. 

This college hack makes it so much less nerve-racking and it will make you sound like you really know your stuff!  

7. Build your GPA in your first years when classes are easier.

You'll thank yourself senior year for this one. 

Going from high school to college is a hard transition but freshmen year classes are definitely the easiest of your 4 years. 

Work hard your first few semesters and do as well as you can. It only gets harder. Having a good start will give you some cushion for when your classes are tougher and it's more difficult to get As. 

8. Eat at as many free food events as you can.

OMG there are sooo many opportunities for free food. And trust me, you'll want to eat at every one. 

Food is expensive, especially if your like me and want to eat out all the time. 

The first few months of school there are so many events to get free food. New club meetings, networking events, Homecoming week, etc. Go to these! You'll save a ton of money on meals and the food is usually super good too πŸ™‚

9. Rent your books on Amazon.

I will honestly never understand how a single book can cost over $200. That makes no sense! 

The good thing is is you can usually rent your books on Amazon rather than paying an absurd amount of money at your school's bookstore. 

Before buying them at school, check Amazon Rentals and compare prices. This college hack has saved me sooo much money throughout college. Just make sure you send it back before the rental deadline! 

I've also used Chegg and really like them because you get a ton of free product samples in the box they send you with your books haha. 

10. Go to office hours! 

Your professors LOVE when students come to office hours. More often than not, they are sitting their bored, waiting for someone to come talk to them. 

If you are struggling at all or have any questions, I highly recommend stopping in to office hours. It's definitely intimidating at first, but after you do it once, you'll realize that your professor is actually their to help and wants you to succeed. 

This is also great to network and get to know your professors. Who knows, you might need their help after graduation! 

11. Drink Pedialyte to lessen a hangover.

Alright, this may sound weird but I stand by this college hack 100%. If you are of drinking age, Pedialyte is pretty much the cure to a hangover. 

Drink it before you go out and after and you'll feel like one hundred bucks the morning after. And trust me, I get the worst hangovers of all time. 

12. Figure out what time of day you are most productive and take advantage of that.

I am such a morning person so I've learned to schedule my classes right away in the morning and do as much as I can before dinner. 

Some people like to stay up late and wake up late. And that's great! Schedule your classes in the afternoon when you are most productive. 

I've learned that if you don't schedule around your most productive time, you end up skipping class or just being lazy and tired. Listen to your body and follow that! 

13. Set your phone screen as your schedule the first week of classes. 

I am so bad at remembering my schedule so this was such a good college hack! It's so much easier to do this than to log in to your school's site and find it. It saved me so much time. 

14. The proper way to wrap a Mac charger. 

I didn't know how to wrap my computer charger for like 3 years into college. This blew my mind lol. This college hack will save you a lot of tangled cords! 

15. Go to class!

It is sooo easy to get in the habit of not going to class. But it's also super easy to get behind. The stress is not worth it. 

Go to class and learn! That's what college is all about. 

16. Bring a door stop when moving into the dorms.

I didn't do this and honestly I probably would have gotten to know a lot more people on my floor if I did. Having your door open is such a great way to tell your neighbors that they are welcome to come in and hang out! 

17. Check out people's leftovers on move out day.

When people are moving out they realize they have a lot of stuff that they don't use or don't want anymore. Check the common areas of your dorm or apartment building for things that people left behind! 

I've found everything from mini fridges to really cool posters. It's like a free garage sale!

18. Don't procrastinate.

The freedom of college makes it so easy to procrastinate and put work off. Stay on top of things! 

It will save you so much stress later in the semester. Cramming at the last minute is the worst and will ultimately hurt your grades. Trust me, I've been there. 

19. Find someone more productive than you and study with them. 

I love going to the library with other people that have their sh*t together. It makes me feel guilty when I'm not doing work which makes me so much more productive. 

One of the best motivators is finding a group of super hard-working people and doing work with them.

20. Only print on campus.

Having a printer sounds nice but honestly it's just a money pit. There are so many places on campus to print for free! 

You don't think of the paper and ink that you'll have to buy and it really does add up. Find the closest printer to your classes or where you live and go there when you need to print! 

21. Try to keep your Fridays as open as possible.

Trust me when I say you will not want to do ANY work once it hits Friday. Try to schedule as little class as you can so you don't have a packed day. 

This college hack helped me a ton once my classes got harder. Monday - Thursday I would be on my grind and would end up burning myself out by Friday. 

It's also great to have a 3 day weekend every week! How great does that sound?

22. Make eggs in the microwave when you're feeling lazy.

I am sooo lazy when it comes to cooking. This college hack has made my life 100x easier in the morning. All you need is a mug, eggs and a microwave! 

This is SO helpful for people living in the dorms too! 

23. Fancy up your Ramen Noodles. 

Everyone knows Ramen Noodles is a classic college meal. I mean how much easier can it be? 

These steps give you a way to switch up the classic Ramen meal to make it a little more home-cooked. I hope these recipes makes you feel a little less lazy! 

24. Know how you study best.

In your first year, test out different ways of studying - flashcards, rewriting notes, rewatching lectures, color coding, etc. Everyone learns differently and it helps so much to figure out how you study most effectively. 

I personally like Quizlet but need to actually print out the Quizlet sheets since I am a visual learner who needs to hold paper in my hand (weird but shows I figured out how I study best!!).

Once you figure out how you study best, studying gets a lot easier and quicker. Your exams will also go a lot better! 

25. Buy a Brita.

Wherever you are living, I always recommend getting a Britta. It honestly just makes your water taste so much better (which is why I love it) but it also makes sure your water is clean which is great too lol.

We used this college hack all the time in the dorms because who knows what's in the water there. 

26. Use free transportation. 

I wish I utilized this college hack more throughout college. Uber is so easy to get in the habit of using to get places and I definitely am guilty of that. 

But trust me, it adds up FAST. 

At my school, you could get a bus pass for free if you were a student. This saves so much money and the bus goes everywhere! Highly recommend looking into free transportation on your campus before you spend an arm on a leg on Ubers lol. 

27. Use binder clips to keep chargers in place. 

I hate when my charger is so short and falls on the floor when I'm studying or in bed. This college hack is sooo easy and makes your charger actually stay where you want it to. So helpful!

28. Place clothing vertical to save space. 

This college hack is great when you are low on storage! You can fit sooo much more in your drawers by placing things this way. 

If you are living in the dorms or a small apartment with limited space, this is a great way to save space. And it looks so organized! 

29. Tape a laundry cheat sheet to your hamper.

I still don't remember what cycle to put my laundry on and I'm a senior lol. This college hack will ensure that you never mess up your laundry because you'll always have a cheat sheet with you! 

30. Use a picture frame as an easy dry erase to-do list.

I love making to-do lists and staying organized. This college hack is so easy if you have an extra picture frame lying around. 

This is so simple and it looks great too!

31. Keep your books and notes and sell them to people that are taking the class after you.

I've been doing this college hack since freshmen year (since I have a younger sister) and keep all my class materials to either give to younger students or sell to people. 

This way you can make money off of material you otherwise would have thrown away and you're helping another student! Good karma πŸ™‚ 

32. Make your own coffee.

When I think about the large amount of money I spend on coffee from Starbucks a year makes me question my life lol.

This is the easiest college hack but is so tempting not to do. Seriously if you are on any sort of budget, making your own coffee will save you SO much. And it's so easy to find what a good combination that is either similar or the same to what you would order at a coffee shop. 

Keurigs or Nespresso machines are a great investment that will make it easy and fast to make a great cup of coffee. 

33. RateMyProfessor.com

This is the BEST website to use when you're signing up for classes. People rate their professors on different things like difficulty, work load, etc. 

Before choosing your classes, I definitely recommend checking this website out to make sure that you're not getting yourself into a super hard class. People are very honest on this site so it will help you a ton. 

34. Listen to recorded lectures at 1.5x speed. 

If you have recorded lectures that you have to watch or are rewatching to study, watch at 1.5x speed. You really can't tell that much of a different and it makes it go sooo much faster. 

35. Copy your keys.

Once you start living on your own, you're going to have keys that you're most likely going to lose at some point (I've already gotten locked out of my apartment so many times). 

Most keys say "Do Not Duplicate" but I promise a locksmith will definitely still duplicate lol. Having a copy will save you so much trouble for the time when you are finding your original. 

36. Check grade distributions. 

Before signing up for classes, especially classes that you are taking just for extra credits and you want to be easy, check grade distributions from your school's registrar. 

I always use this college hack when looking for classes. This will show you the portion of students that get As, Bs, etc. This can help show you how easy the class will be and what your chances are of doing well. 

37. Make time to exercise.

I know we've all heard about the Freshmen 15. Well it's real. 

You have so much more time in college but it's easy to feel like you need to study all the time. Exercising actually helps a ton with productivity and your mood.

It's definitely something you should really try to incorporate into your schedule! 

38. Cooking with a coffee maker.

This is a GREAT college hack for you college freshmen! What better than an appliance that can make your coffee and your dinner? 

39. Don't forget to sleep! 

Guys sleep! I feel like college students have a stereotype that they don't ever sleep. Which some people really don't BUT it's so important!!!

It actually is proven that you retain information better when you get a good night sleep. All-nighters are never a good idea. And who doesn't love their sleep?

40. Get the Mint app to help budget.

I got this app this past summer and it's been so helpful. You can set budgets for yourself for different categories like eating out, bars, shopping, etc. And then it tracks your spending. 

It gives you a weekly summary of your spending and it's made me see that I spend waayyy too much money.

If you're on a budget, you should definitely download Mint! 

41. Bring cash out instead of your debit card. 

I have saved sooo much money doing this. If you are of age and are going out on the town, or if you're just going out to dinner with friends, bring a limited amount of cash out. 

This way you literally can't spend a lot of money because you only have a certain amount! Whenever I bring my debit card out, I always tend to spend way more than I planned to. 

Definitely try this college hack out if you're on a budget or want to save some money! 

42. Have fun!!! 

College goes by wayyy too fast. Don't forget to have fun! Don't take yourself too seriously and don't be afraid to mess up. You only have 4 years and stressing over the small things is not worth the time! 

Live these four years to the fullest! 

This post was all about the best college hacks.

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