What to Look for in a Laptop for College Use

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If your children are growing up fast and college is beckoning, it will be a time of momentous change in the family. The school run will become a distant memory as your teenagers fly the nest for the first time and begin their journey into academic adulthood. One of the key considerations at this point in their lives is to prepare them for a fulfilling and successful college life. In today’s world, the purchase of a laptop for college work is an integral part of this journey. A modern laptop will be vital to ensure that they can complete their assignments effectively and research topics online. Here are some key points to consider before equipping them with this important piece of tech for their studies.

What course will they be taking?

The course that is being studied at college will have a significant impact on what type of laptop to choose and what features to look for. For instance, if your child is perusing a computer science degree, they will need a laptop that can handle programming applications, such as Eclipse or Android Studio, and this will require the need for a more powerful processor and larger amounts of RAM to manage these tasks. Graphics design courses also require the need for computing power for CAD-based applications and the more advanced features of photoshop. Conversely, courses that are more research and learning based which do not require the regular use of specialized applications may mean that a laptop with lower specs (and a more affordable price) is more suitable.

Consider the weight and build quality

One thing most college students will have in common is that they tend to take their laptops everywhere. From lectures to visiting fellow students, their laptops will certainly do some traveling over the course of the degree program. To make this easier for them, it makes sense to pick a lightweight but durable machine when choosing laptops for college. One key factor in durability alongside rugged laptop design is to have a solid-state drive (SSD). Older or ultra budget laptops are less likely to have this feature, and the key difference in SSD is that they can cope with more bumps and knocks without being damaged as they have no moving parts unlike older HDD hardware. Another consideration is to get a decent quality laptop bag or rucksack to protect the computer on its travels.

Will it also be used for gaming?

It is a fact of modern life that a lot of students love to game on their laptops. While gaming should not get in the way of their studies, it is a popular pastime to unwind after lectures and stay connected with close friends who may have gone to other campuses. If this is the case with your family member, then this should also be a determining factor in the choice of laptop. As with intensive graphics design applications, gaming requires a higher-performance graphics card and a CPU with a minimum of four cores to allow for speedy processing. Consider in addition that a 1080p screen resolution is necessary as a minimum spec to allow for high-definition gaming.

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