Honestly, I am not too sure if I am writing this piece to help other students or myself but alas here we are. If you are not a natural-born researcher then writing a thesis feels like a daunting task however be happy that you are in a world that is so technologically advanced. Techies have banded together to make a 70000-130000 character paper easier to navigate.

So here goes the list of 3 apps that had made my thesis writing much simpler. Make sure to read until the end, I have two special mentions that can be added to the list.

Connected Papers

Connected Papers has many functions that help you find and note down papers that are within the field of study you are researching. These are my favourite functions:

  • Graphs: It gives you a visual overview of a new academic field. Once one specific paper is entered the algorithm builds the user a graph of similar papers in the field. Connected Papers analyzes an order of ~50,000 papers and selects the few dozen with the strongest connections to the origin paper.
  • Timely: Finding papers on newly researched topics like Machine Learning is difficult. This application allows you to search and visually discover important recent papers.
  • Bibliography: Never leave referencing for the end. Connected Papers references your bibliography according to required standards.
  • Discover: You can find historical works on your field of interest using the software.


Have you ever just wanted to get the gist of an academic article? Well, Scholarcy summarizes research papers, creates interactive flashcards and highlights key points. Let’s look into some of my favourite features:

  • Suggests background reading is suggested: Do you know too little about a subject? Scholarcy helps you get up to speed by generating a background reading list. It also indicates key terms and abbreviations in the text so you can look them up while reading.
  • Highlights important points: Scholarcy’s unique Robo-Highlighter™ automatically highlights important phrases and contributions made by the paper.
  • Creates a referenced summary: It summarises the whole paper with references, rewriting statements in the third person, making it easier to cite the information correctly in your report, essay or thesis. The summarization technique can be completely customized. The number of words, the level of highlighting, and the level of language variation can all be customized.


I cannot be the only person who sometimes gets stuck trying to paraphrase a great point made in a paper. Quillbot changed this for me. It is a paraphrase and summarizing tool that’s helped millions of students reduce their writing time in half by rewriting any sentence, paragraph, or article using AI. It can integrate directly into Microsoft® Office, Google Docs, and Google Chrom. Its functions include:

  • QuillBot’s paraphrasing tool: can instantly improve your writing, cut unnecessary words, and help you deliver a clear message.
  • Built-in thesaurus function: helps you find the right synonym for the sentence you are writing.
  • Enhance Clarity And Meaning: through its various writing modes that help you write the way you want.
  • Vocabulary Enhancements: through its Word Flipper you can change more (or less) of your writing instantly.

And the special mentions go to what I call the lazy learner and editor apps.

  1. Speechify

Originally designed for ADHD and Dyslexia clients, this app has changed the lives of many graduate students lives. It can take any text and read it out loud using computer-generated text to speech voice. So if you are on the move, you do not have to leave your research behind.


  1. Grammarly

I am sure we have all used Grammarly at least once! It’s a cloud-based writing aid that checks for errors in spelling, grammar, punctuation, clarity, engagement, and delivery. It uses artificial intelligence to detect and find a suitable replacement for the error it discovers. It also allows users to personalize their language style, tone, and context.


Written by Tshimangadzo Nemurangoni with some guidance from Anicca Harriot’s Twitter thread.