While most students bring their own computer to college, for others it is an extreme financial hardship. InsideHigherEd.com published an article on “Serving the Laptopless Student.” The article comments on how some schools are getting rid of computer labs to create spaces where students can use their own laptops. Other schools are continuing to add computer lab spaces for those students who don’t have their own.
If purchasing a computer or lap top before heading off to college is a concern for you, be sure to check with the technology department at the school you are interested in. Find out how many computers are available for public use and what is the usual wait time to use a computer. Also, ask about the programs that run on the public computers. Will it have everything you need to complete your coursework? Find out what the printing policies are at the public computer labs. Will it be really expensive for you to print a 20 page paper?
Finally, be sure to ask if the school has any discount programs available before purchasing a computer at an outside store. Some schools have made “deals” with companies to sell computers on campus at a discount rate.