Yes, the fall semester is actually here, and ACI is ready with numerous internal workflow tools as well as compatibility with other popular platforms to support student and faculty research. But while there are numerous options for content saving, organization, and sharing in the ACI Scholarly Blog Index, one growing use that may surprise you is that of Evernote for research in academia.
For example, in the article Using Evernote for Academic Work in his think blog, PhD Candidate Malcolm Keating gives some great examples for using Evernote in academia, including a sneak peek at his Dissertation notebook (your custom collections are called notebooks in Evernote). In the blog Anthropod, anthropologist Dr. Lorena Gibson talks about Using Evernote for ethnographic fieldnotes, while historian Dr. Kevin Gannon writes about using voice-to-text in Evernote as a research hack in The Tattooed Professor. Apparently, Evernote is popular for genealogists as well; in his High-Definition Genealogy blog, Thomas MacEntee posts about his conference lecture on Evernote for genealogists.
And Evernote use isn’t just for the social sciences. In the Inside Higher Ed Technology and Learning Blog post Using Evernote in the Lab, PhD student Hannah Peacock describes how she uses Evernote’s functionality in a cardiovascular sciences lab. Chemist Dr. Richard Apodaca notes in his blog Depth-First a comprehensive list of the pros and cons of using Evernote as an electronic lab notebook in his post Evernote as an Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN). (Even law isn’t immune: in his LawSites blog, attorney Robert Ambrogi describes himself as an “inveterate Evernote user”.)
Based on its growing use and applications for research and resource collection, we thought you might benefit from a quick guide on using Evernote in your ACI research.
Just click on any thumbnail to view a larger screenshot in a new tab or window.
When you’re on an article-level page, you’ll see several sharing options in the Add This toolbar right off the bat, including email and print along with common social media options such as Twitter and Facebook… but Evernote is also one of these options. To save a blog post to Evernote from an individual blog post page, first click on the red plus sign in the upper-left corner, just above the post abstract.
When you click on the red plus sign, a drop-down menu will offer further common platforms, such as Google, Reddit, and WordPress. The icons shown will usually vary in-session depending on the platforms you’ve used during that session, so once you’ve used Evernote, you might find it along with the print and email options (screenshot above), or along the secondary options (screenshot on left). For now, if you don’t see the Evernote option – and you won’t if you haven’t used it recently – just click on the More selection next to the red plus sign at the bottom.
From here, most of the apps and compatible platforms will be in alphabetical order. We say most because a small group of the most newly-added or newly-modified apps may appear in a second alphabetical list at the bottom. Just scroll down alphabetically to locate the green Evernote elephant icon, and click on Evernote.
At this point, you will be prompted to login to Evernote if you’re not already logged in. After that, or immediately if you are logged in, you’ll be able to choose the notebook (or collection) that you want to save that ACI blog post to, along with tags that you can set for any resource saved to Evernote. In the example on the left, you’ll see that I’m saving this ACI post to an Evernote “notebook” called Blog Posts: Educational Technology. (You can always save now and just create, or modify, your desired notebook later.) Type in your tags as words or phrases separated by a comma. You may find it helpful to add an “aci” tag to ACI posts saved to Evernote, in case you ever want to track by source location in one click.
You can opt to return to the ACI blog post just saved, but here is what it looks like if you opt to visit your Evernote collections. You’ll be taken to that post item at the Notes level in Evernote. Notice that a link to the blog post, sharing options, and all organizational metadata are immediately available, and you can easily edit any of them.
If you click on the notebook icon shown on the left of the above screenshot, this will take you to your Notebooks page. You can see my various ACI blog notebooks set up on the left. This view can be helpful in determining how you might want to reorganize your collections, or whether renaming a collection might help you to more readily identify each resource saved in those groups. It’s also easy to move a post from one collection to another or make other modifications to organize your content.
Evernote also has various tools that work well in your ACI search session. One common tool is the browser extension; the one in the screenshot shown here is the Web Clipper tool for Google Chrome. When I’m on an ACI blog post page, I can click on the Evernote web clipper icon in my browser to add that post to Evernote. The view is a little different, but as you can see, the same options are provided to help you to organize your saved posts as before.
While some Evernote users only use the web version to access their content, some also choose to download the Evernote desktop application. The appearance and functionality are very similar to that shown in the screenshots above, but this does allow you to access your notes and general collection information without web access. To the left you’ll see what our ACI post looks like in the desktop application.
Finally, you can also use Evernote to save numerous post results from an ACI search results page. For example, the screenshot on the left shows the red plus sign option on the left of the screen, which I can then click to locate and select the Evernote sharing option as before. By doing this from the search results page, I can then assure that my saved link in Evernote will always take me to the most recent – and live – view of that ACI search.
Here’s another view of my search results link from within Evernote. In this example, I wanted to save the results for a specific publication, and by saving to Evernote this way, I can always follow the saved link to return to the results for that blog.
There are other ways to use Evernote in your ACI research. One example is to use the custom Evernote email in your account profile to email yourself that post from the sharing options in the first screenshot above. However, as Amit Agarwal notes in this Digital Inspiration post, Evernote implemented a cap recently that only permits five emails with the standard account. However, he points out that you can use the app connector IFTTT as an effective workaround for direct emailing to Evernote.
Are you an Evernote fan? Visit the ACI Scholarly Blog Index today and see what cool strategies you can find to enhance your scholarly blog research, and be sure to post your favorites in the comments below.