Essential apps for Heriot-Watt Students!

Apps for productivity, managing money, ordering food and getting about. Your life will be so much easier when you use these essential apps!

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While you’re all busy swiping right on Tinder or catching Pokémon (that’s still a thing, right?), why don’t you fill your phone with some of these must have apps for Heriot-Watt students? They’ll make your life so much easier when you arrive in September. 

Bus & Tram, Transport for Edinburgh 

You’d quite literally be lost without this one. Known affectionately as “the Bus App”, this little beauty provides real time information on when the next bus/tram is, where your nearest stop is, the routes every bus takes and updates on diversions. It even has a journey planner that lets you save locations such as home and work, and you can buy mobile tickets so you don’t have to carry change on you. (Note there’s a separate app for this called Transport for Edinburgh M-Tickets). Regardless of whether you’re living in halls or off-campus, this is a total must!  

Your Course Online

The University’s virtual learning environments will soon become your best friend. There are currently two Vision and Canvas (the Uni are moving everything over to Canvas, but some courses still use Vision). Here, your lecturers will post announcements, lecture slides, tests, motivational advice and more. It's a bit of a life saver when you need to check the date of that class test on the go, too! Now, there really is no excuse for not staying up-to-date.

Vision and Canvas will also be the website some of your lectures will be held on. Your lecturers will give you a walkthrough on how to use it too but take a minute to find your feet before jumping on the group call...and remember to wear some trousers! 

The apps are:

  • Vision: Search for Blackboard Mobile Learn
  • Canvas: Search for Canvas Student


This one’s ours so forgive us if we’re a teeny bit biased! This app links through to our website and brings you all your campus news, events, job opportunities and ticket info. If you plan to get involved with our socieities (and we really hope you will <3) get this app to stay in the loop; with it you'll be able to join socieities and purchase tickets/sign-up for events SO much easier now! 

We'll also have our election voting available through it -  having your voice heard on student issues has NEVER been easier! 

Check out our page here for the link and on how to set it up!


Referencing is one of those things you’ll learn to hate but it’s a vital part of university life. If you don’t get to grips with it then you’ll be at risk of plagiarism and that’s a big no-no. Don’t worry; your school will tell you all about it, and the library offers free workshops (Power Hours) to guide you through. The RefMe app will show you how to reference properly once you pop in your source data. You can even scan your book’s barcode on your phone and it’ll do all the hard work for you. It then manages all your references into one handy ‘project’ so you can separate your many essays and then export the final list. It’s super handy and also works on your computer as well. Word also has a reference generator which you can use in a pinch but it’s not quite as sophisticated, but you can use it in a pinch!  

There are a few other options out there like Mendeley and Endnote that also handle PDF journal articles and can be used to overlay notes on. Some are better than others and some have free versions so find one that works for you and smash those essays!  

Microsoft Teams 

Some lecturers will choose to run online lectures and tutorials (and even the odd student meeting) on Teams so, ahead of starting, it’d be a good idea to learn your way around. Teams is also great for group work as it allows you to share files and work on them together so keep it in mind for your next group project!  


These apps are a great way to get a private hire/taxi without the hassle of having to ring up. They give you a real time countdown of where your driver is and are linked to your credit or debit card so that you don’t need to worry about having cash on you. You can even split the cost of the fare with your mates so you don’t need to worry about who owes who when you get back to campus. 


SafeZone is an app with a direct call button to the on-campus Safeguarding Team in case anyone's in trouble/in danger on campus. Whether it's some light first aid for a cooking injury or you think someone's had their drink spiked, you can get direct help as soon as you need it! It also works off campus too - you can use it if you're in town or further afield and it'll let the University get help to you faster. 

Download it here! 


Yes, you will have to eventually step into the library building. In The library app lets you browse the catalogue from the comfort of your room so you can see if the book you want is available or not. This will make sure you don’t have a wasted trip! You can also log into your library account and see your outstanding loans and renew them if you wish. 


They both deliver to halls! Yay! Perfect if you can’t be bothered cooking or if you’re having a feast with your friends.  


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