Should I Bring a Computer to College?

Should you bring a computer with you?

Flickr user: Leo Leung

Wondering whether you should bring a laptop to college or not? Wonder no more! While we can’t give you an exact answer, we are able to bring up points you may not have thought about. In the end, it’s going to be up to you to make the decision, but we’re happy to help along the way.

Computer Access

Many schools provide computers on campus for students to use free of charge. The student might need to provide a university ID or login information but then can use the computers as they wish. This is great for students who enjoy doing their work on campus, but either don’t have or don’t want to bring their personal computer to campus with them. Some schools also provide laptops for students to check-out for the day or week. Because laptops can be somewhat expensive, this is a great resource for students who wish to save money.

Notes

Another thing to consider is how you prefer to take notes. If you like to handwrite your notes (which helps with memorization and engagement), you could survive just fine without a laptop. However, if you prefer to take notes on a computer or tablet, it might be worth the investment to have your own. Using your own computer can be handy for keeping your notes organized in one place, making them easy to find. By typing your notes, they will also be easier to share with others and read if you have poor handwriting. On the flip side, some computers can be heavy and a bother to bring to class. They might not feel like they would be an issue, but think about how far you may need to carry them.

What kind?

Next, there’s the age-old question of Mac versus PC. The best answer I can give you is to keep using what you are accustomed to. If you grew up in a PC household, it’s best to stick to those devices. Your first semester isn’t the one to do a virtual 180. If you’re concerned about what the school uses, don’t be. They’ll provide cords and systems to allow compatibility, no matter what system you are using. Don’t worry about what other people are buying; get what’s best for you.

Cost

Again, you’ll want to keep in mind the cost of a personal computer. If you decide a computer is best for you, start saving early and save extra. It can be worth it to invest in a spendier product if it has the right programs for you, but be sure to take good care of it so you won’t have to pay for any damages to it. A good computer should be able to last you the majority of your college years.

Although we can’t give you the perfect answer to whether or not you should buy a computer for college, hopefully, we helped you consider things you hadn’t already thought of. Use our college match tool to see what schools match with you best, and look into the technology and resources they provide.

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