In this week's article, we will be showing you how to make use of free NUS resources that you may or may not be using. This might be useful for you if you are an exchange student coming in halfway through the semester, or even for existing students who are looking for free resources but yet unsure of how to obtain them.
Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus
You must be thinking: I already have Microsoft pre-installed on my Windows laptop / computer, why do I need this? Well, this is slightly different than that Microsoft that we are all used to.
First, Office 365 ProPlus bundles all core Office productivity applications including: Access (PC only), Excel, OneDrive for Business, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher (PC only), Skype for Business and Word. These applications can seamlessly connect and be used with cloud services like Microsoft Teams or Skype Online, across multiple devices (up to 5). Essentially, it makes all of these applications incredibly easy to access on various cloud services - kind of like Google Drive!
But the second benefit is the cost savings. It will be extremely useful for MacBook or Windows (should you not have it already) users who don't want to spend 100 over dollars on buying the license. This means that as broke college student, you will be able to save that money but yet have the full experience of working easily online.
Find out the step-by-step instructions here:
Have you ever felt envious of your project groupmates for having the premium Zoom license, whereas you are stuck with the "40-minutes basic plan", and you can never really be the host of these meetings?
The good news is, NUS offers licensed Zoom pro accounts for students with teaching duties (TAs, CCA leaders). Even if you are not a TA, but you are a CCA leader, or is involved with an event that requires the licensed Zoom account, then this is for you! With the licensed Zoom pro account, you can hold Zoom meetings for an unlimited time, ability to record your meetings onto the Cloud (in case your 7-year-old laptop fails on you), streaming services to Social Media (Facebook, YouTube), expanded administrative controls, and better user management as a whole.
All you have to do it fill in the form (only works if you have never filled in the form before), and wait for your licensed Zoom account!
It will take up to 3 working days for the administrators to approve of your application, but once it is approved, you should your plan type change on the top right hand corner of your zoom profile (see below).
This is one of the, if not, most important website / free resource for your entire NUS journey. Given that you will probably have to write a lot of essays, do a lot of research (for non-FASS students), or extract data from some nebulous void, NUS Libraries should be your number one place to visit.
Even without signing in, you are able to have access to a plethora of resources, and you can click on the "Advanced search" function to filter for the information that you need.
Advanced Search Function Page
Furthermore, you might have come across websites that lock the articles that you are looking to cite in your next assignment. This can be circumvented by attempting to look for our institution on the log in page of the website, and more often than not, you can usually gain access to these articles because NUS partners with these website to help you with your research.
Gaining access to the article / academic journal
The last feature of NUS libraries would be the NUS Proxy Bookmarklet, a function that automatically inserts the NUS library proxy stem into a URL, E-Book or E-Article. This is for those who use Google Scholar, and are often met with the issue of the article being locked and just being unavailable for viewing. But fret not, because NUS Proxy Bookmarklet will help you check if the required title is within NUS' subscription, and you will never have to find yourself in such a situation again!
Check out how to install the Proxy Bookmarklet:
And here's the link for NUS Libraries in general:
The next is Notion. Keeping the platform free for students was an initiative by Notion, where they partnered up with NUS (any other educational institutes globally) to bring this platform to you. Do note that it is not technically a NUS free resource, but it is something accessible using your NUS email!
If you don't already know, Notion is one of the most popular applications that boasts a myriad of components like databases, kanban boards, wikis, calendars and reminders. It allows for users to connect these components together, and personalise your workspace. It is exceptionally useful for note taking, timetable planning, workspace creation, resource sharing and many more.
For the full experience, the Personal Pro plan is highly recommended, but it comes at the price of $4/month, and in the grand scheme of things, it might not seem like a lot, but why pay for it when you can get it for free?
There will be no additional costs, and the personal pro plan will be entirely free!
NUS offers a lot of available and free resources for students like me and you. Once you know where to look for them, it will most definitely drastically improve the way you study in a COVID-era, and even in a post-COVID era (crossing our fingers!) where you will still find use for these resources one way or another.
By the time you see this article, we will be on the tail-end of recess week, and mid-terms are just looming around the corner - but press on, you can absolutely do it! We hope that this was useful for you; adios, and good luck!