Must-have Anki Add-ons for Medical Students in 2020

We all know med school is tough and the amount of information required to memorize is tremendous. So obviously the question begs why not make it easy on yourself and use some powerful tools?

Anki is an open source flashcard software. If you’re here, you likely know how popular it is among med school students. Since it’s open source, anyone can build on top of it. So we decided to compile a list of most popular add-ons we heard from our users!

You can find the free add-ons on the Anki website to improve your Anki experience.

There are hundreds of add-ons by other Anki users. With every Anki update, more functionality is added, especially through support of more add-ons.

We have categorized these Anki add-ons to make it easy to find what you are looking for. While these Anki add-ons are great for med students, they can be used by other students or casual learners as well.

To install an Anki add-on, go to the tools menu and then Add-ons, then click on Browse & Install and paste in the code. Here’s also a video that explains this process.

With that, let’s get started.

Gamification

These add-ons will bring some fun to your learning habits.

Pokemanki

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Very popular (73 upvotes)

Description: The Pokemanki add-on will keep you motivated to use Anki by letting you catch and train Pokemons inside your deck. It gives you a hatchable Pokemon egg for each lowest-level deck that you start learning. Your Pokemon will keep on leveling up as you review and learn the cards in the deck. They might even evolve.

You can access your Pokemons under your Stats screen. They will be above all your figures and charts. You will be able to see Pokemons for specific decks and their origin. Just review the deck to keep on training them.

Anki code: 633922407

Kitten Rewards

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Somewhat popular (15 upvotes)

Description: Kittens rule the internet, and they have taken over Anki decks as well. Kitten Rewards is an Anki add-on which acts as an excellent learning motivator. This add-on has a simple concept: it adds a “cute kitten” on the congrats screen after a deck is finished. So if you lack motivation to study, use this add-on to get back on track.

What’s more? You can upload your own kitten pictures as well :)

Anki code: 1627107763

Anki Fanfare

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Somewhat popular (14 upvotes)

Description: Anki fanfare is another cool add-on if you want to add a particular theme to your flashcard review. For example, there’s a trout theme and a Bruce Lee theme. The trout theme shows pictures of trout, and the Bruce Lee theme shows you sayings from the Master. Be like water?

It has so many themes that you can use with your cards. Simply download a particular theme and unzip it to “fanfare/user_files”.

Users have reviewed this add-on writing that they get a “dopamine hit” every time they finish a card.

Anki code: 2073603704

Anki Habitat

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Somewhat popular (14 upvotes)

Description: A little RPG magic always does the trick. No, we are not talking about Skyrim — you might never do any learning around Skyrim. But this little RPG integrated into the Anki software can take you a long way when it comes to finding a little motivation while reviewing those cards.

Anki Habitat is supported across platforms. It works by adding points to your Habitica stats as you progress through your cards. With these points added to your Habitica character, you can battle your friends and slay monsters.

It’s a really cool add-on if you already use Habitica. If not, give it a try and motivate yourself to achieve your goals. Over 2,000,000 people are having fun through Habitica while achieving their goals.

Anki code: 1758045507

Productivity

Some Anki plugins to boost your productivity and ace your card review.

Polar Connect - PDF and Incremental Reading with Anki Sync

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Very popular (45 upvotes)

Description: Polar is a document manager, reader, and learning tool all in one. Have you ever had to study from a book or a website and then create flashcards based on what you’re reading? Well, Polar is your tool. With Polar, you can auto-convert any annotation, highlight, or comment in one click into a flashcard.

The Polar add-on for Anki establishes a communication channel between Polar and Anki to easily sync flashcards from Polar to Anki.

Finally, Polar simplifies managing a reading list with tags, groups, reading progress tracking, and more

Anki code: 734898866

More Overview Stats

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Popular (38 upvotes)

Description: As the name indicates, this Anki plugin adds more stats to your overview page. This way you can keep track of your learning progress. It even adds colors to the labels for a different touch to the Anki stats page. When you hover over the colors, they show you the cards in the following order: new, learn, review, buried, and suspended.

Anki code: 2116130837

Batch Editing

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Popular (66 upvotes)

Description: The Batch Editing add-on for Anki adds a new menu item to the card browser, which allows you to do two things: Batch-add information/media to a specific field, batch-replace the contents of any particular field.

The changes that you make are applied to all selected notes that are featured in the field.

Here’s an instructional video on how to use this add-on.

Anki code: 291119185

Visual upgrades

Visual upgrades to Anki enhance the way it looks, giving it room for more memory cues and helping you learn faster.

Night Mode

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Very popular (383 upvotes - I mean, seriously, who doesn’t love night mode?)

Description: The history of night modes can be traced back to Windows Phone 7. The feature was added to the now-dead OS to reduce battery consumption as entirely black pixels didn’t emit any light on OLED screens. Since then, night mode as a feature in apps and software has come a long way.

It’s one the best Anki add-ons for medical students as they can recharge their deck review (even at night) by modifying Anki to having an all-black background. The add-on gives you the option to automatically (timer) or manually turn on the night mode. You can even invert colors of images or latex formulas and define custom color substitution rules.

Anki code: 1496166067

Button Colors

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Very popular (111 upvotes)

Description: If you need some rigorous learning done through Anki, then you might as well use some colors. You must know that the Anki’s deck page has buttons defined as ‘Good’, ‘Easy’, and ‘Again’ to update the time between iterations on a card.

This add-on only imitates the impact of colors on humans: red is known to pose a bit of danger, and you are good to go when things are green. This add-on makes the “Good” button green and the “Again” button red.

“I’m a simple man. I see colours, I click like.” — add-on review.

Anki code: 2494384865

Full Screen Toggle

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Somewhat popular (14 upvotes)

Description: Medical studies require a high amount of focus. There are so many new terms coming in, and you wouldn’t want to entertain any distractions as you try to get through them.

This add-on does what it says — it adds F11 key binding so that you can toggle full screen on Anki. You can also find this feature in the Tools menu. With this add-on at hand, you can cast all the distractions aside.

Anki code: 1612375712

Customize Keyboard Shortcuts

Updates: Frequent

Popularity: Popular (44 upvotes)

Description: The Keyboards Shortcuts add-on is designed to increase your efficiency on the Anki app. It allows you to change the shortcuts on the main page, the editor window, the review window, and the deck browser window.

You can head over to Tools > Add-ons> Custom Shortcuts and click Config to change each shortcut inside Anki.

Anki code: 24411424

Usability

The add-ons under this category add extra features to the way you use Anki. With these add-ons in action, you can do much more than just reviewing your deck.

ImageResizer

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Popular (67 upvotes)

Description: The whole point of Anki is to make memorization more efficient. Now imagine this: you plan out your cards, add images, and at the review time, you realize that the pictures are too small or big.

With the ImageResizer add-on, you can resize all the images to the desired format and make sure that the image size is not a problem anymore. To change the shortcut and the size of the photos you are using, click on Tools, and then go to ImageResizer. The add-on page has a great tutorial to figure out exactly how to use this add-on to your advantage.

Anki code: 1214357311

Image Occlusion Enhanced

Updates: Frequent

Popularity: Very popular (159 upvotes)

Description: Have you ever had to remember body parts from an image? Probably… :) A quick and effective way to remember these names is by hiding parts of an image in your card and then testing your knowledge of that hidden information.

The Occlusion Enhanced Addon is designed to do just that. You can use it to memorize things better by hiding labels in a diagram, and then revealing them. The cards generated under this add-on are described as ‘mage-based cloze-deletions’.

There’s even a series of video tutorials on how to use the add-on.

Anki code: 1374772155

AwesomeTTS

Updates: Infrequent

Popularity: Popular (74 upvotes)

Description: The AwesomeTTS add-on makes it easier for medical students to learn new terms by adding speed to their card decks. It has the option to store MP3 or speech to the collection. And yes, you can generate MP3 files on the go.

Click here to find their documentation, including their usage, service, and configuration.

Anki code: 427598962

Batch Download Pictures From Google Images

Updates: Frequent

Popularity: Somewhat popular (10 upvotes)

Description: Wouldn’t it be great if you can batch download pictures to Anki through an add-on so that you can later use them in your cards? This add-on for Anki downloads pictures from Google Images into a destination field. You also get to select how many pictures to download and choose the maximum height and width for them.

The add-on is fast and takes about 3 seconds to download a picture.

Anki code: 561924305

Web Browser - Search terms, Import texts and images automatically

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Somewhat popular (24 upvotes)

Description: Web browsers can be a distraction. You sit with Anki open on your computer, and next thing you know, you are browsing memes on Reddit ;)

This add-on prevents you from opening your computer’s web browser by installing a native browser to Anki. It has a simple browser that lets you search words on the internet and then later import the information to your card.

Anki code: 864545277

Review Heatmap

Updates: Regular

Popularity: Popular (50 upvotes)

Description: While studying, it’s always great to track your progress. Anki does come with some stats that you can look at, but the Review Heatmap add-on gives you an advanced tracking functionality. It’s a great Anki plugin for med students as it shows you your daily review averages, days learned, current streak, and longest streak.

The newest release for Anki 2.1 is still in Beta, and you can download it from here. This Anki plugin also integrates well with the Night Mode add-on.

Anki code: Suggested download from the beta page on GitHub.

Summary

Here you have it folks. These Anki add-ons for medical students can save you valuable time and totally redefine the way you use Anki to learn and retain new information. Most of these plugins come with great support and documentation to make their usage as easy as possible.

If you have other add-ons you think med students should use, do let us know.

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