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The Advantages of Having a Laptop in College

Laptops are one of the greatest inventions for students looking to get more out of their college education. College is one of the most exciting times in any person’s life but it can also be one of the most stressful as students struggle to manage their newfound freedom, learn multiple new subjects, stay organized, and create a schedule that allows them to balance all of their various priorities. With a laptop, however, all of these tasks can become easier. The all-in-one design of laptops combines the screen, keyboard, mouse, speakers, and internet capabilities found in a desktop, into one lightweight package. This more streamlined design makes laptops an easily portable device that can be carried back and forth between classes along with schoolbooks. Laptops can also be used to complete research papers and other class projects while at the library, cyber café, when traveling, or in the dorm room.

Note Taking

In class, students can use their laptops in order to take notes. Note taking software allows students to organize notes by category, idea, or concept as well as import text files or link information to web pages. Some even allow students to share their notes, publish them online, and include audio and video elements to record lectures and classroom discussions. There are even speech recognition programs that will create a complete transcript of the lecture, so students can review the lecture at their leisure. For students with barely legible handwriting or those who have arthritis, or vision problems, this can make it easier to follow along with classroom work without falling behind.

Getting Organized

With a laptop, college students will also find it easier to keep up with homework and stay organized. By typing out homework assignments instead of printing them on regular paper, students can use spell checking and grammar checking programs to avoid common writing errors and can make their papers more neat and professional looking. Usually, this can also help students to avoid losing homework assignments since papers can just be printed out on the day that they are due, instead of being crushed in the bottom of a book bag or lost in a crowded dorm room. Students can also organize their work by creating various folders for different classroom subjects, and use online or software based calendars, task list, and planners in order to create schedules. These schedules can include information on dates and times for classes, when homework is due, and much more. Students can even download timers that can beep just like regular alarm clocks to wake them up each day so they are able to get up and be ready on time before a class starts. 

Supplemental Learning & Research

Maybe one of the biggest advantages of having a laptop in class is the ability to go online when in class to get additional information. For instance, a student taking a class on the First World War can access videos, diaries, pictures, facts, and other information about the war. This helps fully engage the student in the learning process, making the topic come alive and allowing the student to better process the information. Online books, articles, journals, and scholarly webpages will also help students to do extensive research on various topics in order to complete research papers and other assigned projects. Once students have saved information on their laptops this information can also be shared in multiple ways to aid in research and learning. Students can back up their files online or on thumb drives and then transfer files between different computers. They can then share this knowledge with other students when working on group projects or participating in study groups.

For college students, laptops have very few disadvantages. The deceptively simple design allows students to save time and complete multiple tasks with ease. College students can find basic laptops available from various retailers or customize a unique system that will suit their learning needs. For instance, students seeking an art degree will have different performance requirements and software needs than students enrolled in an engineering program. Computer models designed with students in mind may also include dictionaries, encyclopedias, word processing programs, and presentation programs that help students get their schoolwork done. Modern laptops are also reasonably priced and upgrades can be purchased as needed to increase performance or keep the system up-to-date. All told, a laptop is a smart purchase that can quickly become a student’s greatest asset in the pursuit of academic excellence.