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36 Life Hacks Every College Student Should Know

Time to get some life skills you won’t acquire in a lecture hall.

1. Use the snack incentive while studying.

2. Save time studying by listening to recorded lectures at twice the speed.

You can use a program like Audacity or VLC media player to do this.

3. Take notes using different colored pens.

This will fire up your visual memory. It also looks pretty and makes taking notes more enjoyable.

4. Build up your GPA in the beginning semesters when classes are easier.

Don’t slack off on the easier classes just because they’re a breeze. You’ll want those easy A’s to balance out the harder classes come junior and senior year.

5. Learn how to make coffee without a coffee maker.

You’ll need disposable cups, a coffee mug, a coffee filter, coffee, rubber bands, and hot water to create this magical alchemy.

6. For an easy breakfast, make scrambled eggs in the microwave using a coffee mug.

And it only takes up a minute and a half of your precious time.

Spray the mug with nonstick cooking spray, crack two eggs into the mug, and add some shredded cheese and a splash of milk. Place in microwave for 45 seconds. Stir. Heat for another 45 seconds. Stir again to make sure it’s cooked thoroughly.

7. A binder clip keeps beverages neatly stacked in a tiny mini-fridge.

8. When you’re too lazy to do dishes, use a tortilla as a plate or bowl.

Tortillas are also cheaper than bread.

9. Living off campus with a few friends? Get a better Wi-Fi signal from your router with this beer can trick.

Watch this video to get the full directions.

10. Invest in a laptop lock.

College = basically a den of thieves. Get one here.

11. Save space in your tiny closet by hanging multiple garments with soda pop tabs.

12. File your clothes to save space.

13. Stop rampant pen hijacking by stealthily hiding a blue ink cartridge in a red pen.

No one wants your crappy red pen.

14. Hang your photos and dorm posters with washi tape.

It’s pretty, and it won’t take the paint off the wall.

15. Use Visa gift cards to get free trials online.

16. When it’s hot out, hang a damp towel hung over an open window to cool down a stuffy dorm room.

tsmall / Flickr

17. Construct-a-Straw makes for the easiest cocktail ever.

18. Post-it notes will keep Cheeto-dust buildup on a grimy keyboard at bay.

19. For impromptu dance parties, fit an iPhone into an empty plastic soda bottle.

The bass will be clearer, and the volume will be much louder.

20. If you’re a heavy sleeper, putting your phone into a glass will amplify the sound.

21. Heat two bowls at once in the microwave with this handy trick.

Sharing is caring, and this tip automatically makes you the best roommate.

22. Turn your laptop bag into a backpack.

23. Wrap a warm beer in a damp paper towel and place in the fridge for 15 minutes.

It’ll be cold enough to drink when you take it out.

24. Keep your dorm room or apartment smelling fresh and clean with a dryer sheet.

A fan works, too, if you don’t have an AC unit.

25. When giving a presentation, set up a friend to ask you a question that you already know the answer to.

You’ll look like you really know your shit.

26. Use “meme font” for presentations.

27. Make a simple meal with a coffeemaker.

28. Get the Wi-Fi password to most establishments by checking the comments on Foursquare.

29. Drink in public the smart way.

30. Sneak liquor into any festival or outdoor event in a hollowed-out baguette.

31. Snack like a boss.

When reaching in a bag of potato chips is more work than you are willing to do.

32. Reheat pizza in a microwave with a glass of water.

It prevents toppings from going dry and keeps the crust CRUSTY.

33. Use 3M hooks to mount a tablet wherever you want.

Have a spontaneous Tim and Eric marathon ANYWHERE.

34. Have short charger cords? Need a power strip near your bed? Tape it to your nightstand.

It’ll keep the cords from getting all tangled on the floor and plugs will be less likely to come out. Just poke holes in the tape.

35. If your laptop is overheating on your lap, flip one of these over and set the laptop on top.

Instant bed lapdesk!

36. And finally, become the master of Maruchan gourmet.

College is an opportunity to learn things, and in particular, how to become an ordained shaman of Ramen.

The book based on this post, Amazing Food Hacks: 75 Incredibly Easy Tips, Tricks And Recipes To Amp Up Flavor by Peggy Wang, is out August 19, 2014 on Clarkson Potter.


Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Powell’s.

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