Best Student Laptops for School and UniversityWe're here to help you work out what laptop you need and where to get it at a great price!

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Got to Buy a Laptop for School or Uni and Don’t Know Where to Start?

Then start right here. Here are the Best Student Laptops for the Best Price!

Choosing a laptop can be tricky and honestly, sometimes understanding the specs is like deciphering a secret code. If your child, teenager, university student or even yourself if you are a mature age student like me, is in need of a laptop for the new school year then you’re in luck because we have put together the ultimate laptop buying guide for you.

10 Best Student Laptops for School and University | Stay at Home Mum

What to Consider When Buying a Student Laptop

A laptop is not a cheap purchase so it is important to do your research first, there is nothing worse than spending a fortune on a computer only to realise later that it is not capable of doing what you need it too. Back in the day of CD-ROMs, I bought a laptop for a course that I was doing, I only realised a few months into my studies that it didn’t have a disk drive so I couldn’t access any of the information that I needed, it was an expensive lesson but now I make sure I check everything before I make my choice.

Before you start shopping around there are a few things to consider:

What Is The Primary Use for the Laptop?

What does the laptop need to do? If it is for a university course what subjects will it be used for? For example, if it is for a design course you may require a touch screen with a stylus for drawing. What software will the laptop be using? A lot of engineering and design courses use AutoCad which comes with its own special requirements. If the laptop is for a primary school student then the laptop may only need to do the bare minimum, running Microsoft Word etc.

Your school or university should provide you with a spec sheet or similar for the computer requirements the student will need.

Your Budget:

How much do you actually want to spend on a laptop?  For primary school and early high school – there isn’t any point in purchasing an expensive laptop – no only can they get damaged, ruined or stolen (you know what kids are like) – but laptops really will have a life of about three years before they become obsolete.

You can purchase a perfectly good budget laptop for students for under $500.

If $500 is out of your budget – have a look at our section on refurbished laptops – a great way to get a great laptop at a fantastic price!

Does Your School Have Specific Requirments?

While laptop requirements for primary school students are generally pretty straight forward, highschool requirements maybe a little trickier to navigate. Check what software your teen will need to use for each subject and where the laptop will be stored, if it will be in their school bag being thrown around all day then you may need to look at more durable models.

Is The Software Compatible with What the School or University Uses?

For most students, Microsoft Windows is an essential program so it is important to make sure that the laptop you choose is compatible and has these programs installed. While a variety of laptops come with Microsoft Windows built-in, Apple products run on macOS however, you can add Windows to them as well. Chromebooks are generally not compatible with Microsoft Windows.

Core Processing Unit (CPU)

The Core Processor unit is essentially the brain of the laptop. A laptop with a powerful CPU will be able to do more complex tasks and run faster so it may suit university students more but children who are mainly using their laptop for Microsft Windows, and exploring the internet will be fine with a less powerful CPU.

Random Access Memory (RAM)

Not having enough RAM makes it hard to complete even the simplest tasks on a laptop. A decent laptop will run efficiently on 4GB of RAM but 8GB is even better and then for the more expensive models you should expect at least 166GB.

Storage

How will the files be stored? Will they be stored on the cloud, on a hard drive or on the laptop itself? If you are planning on storing all of your files on the laptop then you may want to consider a laptop with SSD (solid-state drive) storage, this will also help it run faster.

Size

What size screen is required? If your university student is doing graphics or photo editing then they may require a larger screen. Also consider the weight and dimensions of the laptop you are purchasing, will it fit in your child’s backpack? Is it too heavy for them to carry around all day?

Battery Life

If your student needs to use their laptop all-day and does not have access to power in class to charge it then you may need to consider choosing one with greater battery life. Laptop batteries vary but after a complete charge, they should last between 1 to 10 hours, though some of the more expensive ones can last as long as 18 hours.

Other Things to Consider:

  • Is the laptop lightweight to carry around with them?
  • What operating systems are required?
  • Do you need accessories with the laptop?

What is the Cheapest Laptop That Does Just About Everything?

Our Pick:  Kogan Atlas 10.1″ 2-in-1 D500 Touchscreen Laptop

Price: $359.99 with free shipping

If you are after a reliable base model laptop that does not cost an arm and a leg, our pick is the Kogan Atlas 10.1” 2-in-1 D500 Touchscreen Laptop. This laptop is light and compact so it is perfect from carting around from class to class. The Intel Celeron Processor N3350 gets the job done and the Micro SD slot provides and extra storage option if needed. It has all the basic needs, at a good inexpensive price.

Specifications:

  • CPU: Intel Celeron Processor N3350
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 64GB
  • Display: 10.1″
  • Size: 260 x 182.5 x 25 mm
  • Weight: 1.11kg
  • Price: $359.99

Stockist>

Most Affordable Laptop Computer for School

 

Best Discount Everyday Student Laptops Under $500:

These are the laptops that are designed for both primary school and high school – they have all the basic features, but no specific high-tech add-ons.  They aren’t particularly powerful but they are great for all the basic tasks and applications a student will need.  Best of all – most of them (except one) are under $500.00.

At a basic level – these laptops will:

  • Browse the internet
  • Send and receive emails
  • Have Microsoft pre-programmed
  • Video Streaming

Here are our picks!

  1. Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 3i Chromebook 11″ $449.00
  2. Asus 14 inch Celeron-N4020/4GH/64GB eMMC Laptop $369.00
  3. HP14-DB0006AU 14″ Chromebook (32GB) $379.00
  4. Asus VivBook E203 11.6″HD Laptop (64GB) $339.00 (via Amazon Australia)
  5. Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 14″ HD Laptop (64GB) $449.00
  6. Acer Spin 1 SP111-33-C3YD 11.6″ 2-in1 Touchscreen Laptop (64GB) $499.00
  7. HP 12b-CA0008TU 12″ Chromebook (64GB) $499.00
  8. HP 11 G4 11.6″ Chromebook OS Laptop $239.00
  9. Lenovo Chromebook S340 14″ FHD (64GB) $399.00

On top of this – to get the best deals – look at:

  • The best online deal sites 
  • Take advantage of any student or school discounts offered
  • Retailers selling discontinued laptops
  • Consider a refurbished laptop (see the next paragraph for details!)

Where to Buy a Cheap Laptop | Stay at Home Mum

Consider a Refurbished Laptop For a Really Good Deal;

There are many companies that are now providing excellent refurbished laptops online that will be more than suitable for a student.  They do sell quickly though – we have listed where you can find the latest ones here:

What to look for in a refurbished laptop?

Make sure you look at a refurbished laptop that still has a warranty (at least 12 months).  Any imperfections or problems should be outlined in the description.  Look for an A-Grade Refurbished unit to get the very best laptop you can!

Ten Of The Best Laptops On The Market Today

1. HP 250 G7 15.6″ Celeron 3867U 4GB RAM 128GB SSD Win 10 Home Laptop

  • Best for Primary School and Early High School Students

The HP 250 G7 15.6″ Celeron 3867U 4GB RAM 128GB SSD Win 10 Home Laptop is a great option for students who are not completing onerous tasks. It has a 2 x USB ports and an HDMI port, making it great for presentations or sharing information. Plus it is under $500 – so pretty well priced for a laptop.

  • CPU: Intel Celeron 3867U processor
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 128GB SSD
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Size: 37.6 x 2.25 x 24.6cm
  • Weight: 1.78kg
  • Price: $459.00
  • Best Price: Kogan

Best Student Laptop

 

2. Acer Aspire 5 15.6″ FHD Win 10 Laptop (i5-1035G1, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Black) – Australian Model

  • Best for University Students

The Acer Aspire 5 15.6″ FHD Win 10 Laptop (i5-1035G1, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Black) is a fantastic mid-range laptop. With 8GB RAM and 256GB, your student will be able to work at an efficient speed. This laptop has 1920 × 1080 resolution and crisp sound so it is great for video editing.

This is a bit more expensive at $899 – but it does have additional functions that are more suited to University Students.

  • CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G1 Processor
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB SSD
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Size: 36.3 x 1.79 x 25cm
  • Weight: 1.8kg
  • Price: $899.00
  • Best Price: Kogan

Best Student Laptops

 

3. Apple 13.3″ MacBook Air 2020 MWTK2 (1.1GHz i3, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Silver)

  • Best for University Students

The MacBook Air is so easy to operate and the Intel Core i3 1.1GHz Dual-Core Processor means that they will be able to have multiple tabs open at once. It features great programs for study including Keynote and Pages. If your child/university student needs Microsoft Windows it can be purchased and downloaded with ease.

Of course, being an Apple product – it is more expensive – but these things seriously rock – so if budget isn’t such a big deal – this is a fantastic choice!

  • CPU: Intel Core i3 1.1GHz Dual-Core Processor
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB of SSD storage
  • Display: 13.3″
  • Size: 30.41 x 0.41-1.61 x 21.24cm
  • Weight: 1.29kg
  • Price: $1,499
  • Best Price: Kogan

Best Student Laptop

 

4. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 13.5″ (256GB, i5, 8GB RAM, Black) – AU/NZ Model

  • Best for University Students

The Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 is perfect for running more sophisticated software. This computer would be great for students studying design or engineering.

CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G7 Processor

  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB
  • Display: 13.5″
  • Size: 308 x 223 x 14.5mm
  • Weight: 1.28kg
  • Price: $1,759.00
  • Best Price: Kogan

Best Student Laptops

 

5. ThinkPad L380 Yoga – 8th Gen Intel

  • Best for Technical Students in High School and University Students

With a battery life of 12 hours and rapid charging time, the ThinkPad L380 Yoga – 8th Gen Intel is perfect if your student needs to use it all-day. It has multiple USB ports making it easy to share files and back up documents.

  • CPU: 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 8GB
  • Display: 13.3″
  • Size: 321.8 x 224 x 18.8 mm
  • Weight: 1.46kg
  • Price: $1,099.00
  • Stockist: Lenovo

Best Student Laptops

 

6. IdeaPad C340 15″ – 10th Gen Intel

  • Best for Engineering and Graphics Students at University

The IdeaPad C340 15″ – 10th Gen Intel is light yet powerful, the stylus and touchscreen allow you to draw freely whenever inspiration strikes making it the ideal laptop for students studying Art, graphics, engineering, even game design.

  • CPU: 10th Gen Intel Core i3-1005G1
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 4GB Soldered + 4GB DIMM DDR4-266
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Size: 328 x 339 x 17.92 mm
  • Weight: 1.75kg
  • Price: $1,599.00
  • Stockist: Lenovo

Best Student Laptops

 

7. ASUS D509BA 15.6″ A9 Windows 10 Notebook

  • Best for University Students

The ASUS D509BA 15.6″ A9 Windows 10 Notebook has a huge screen with a vivid HD, anti-glare display. This laptop is a little heavier and bulkier so it would be more suitable for university students.

  • CPU: AMD A9 9425 3.1Ghz
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 512GB SDD
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Size: 360.2 x 234.9 x 22.9 mm
  • Weight: 1.8kg
  • Price: $729.00
  • Available At: PLE Computers

Best Student Laptops | Stay at Home Mum

 

8. ASUS 14-Inch VivoBook Flip 14 TP401MA-BZ212TS 2-in-1 Laptop

The ASUS 14-Inch VivoBook Flip functions as a laptop and a tablet, it is perfect for taking notes and writing up assignments. It is light and compact so would fit easily into your child’s backpack.

  • CPU: Celeron N4020
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 128GB
  • Display: 14″
  • Size: 327 x 226 x 15.4 mm
  • Weight: 1.5kg
  • Price: $698.00
  • Available At: Catch

Best Student Laptops | Stay at Home Mum

 

9. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon G7 14in FHD i5-10210U 8GB 256GB Win10P Laptop

  • Best for University Students

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon G7 is mega-machine packed into a super light little laptop. It has a whopping 18.3 hours of battery life with rapid charging, 8GB RAM and a powerful CPU so it won’t slow you down when you’re on a deadline.

  • CPU: Intel Core i5 10th Gen.
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Storage: 256GB
  • Display: 14″
  • Size: 323 x 217 x 14.95 mm
  • Weight: 1kg
  • Price: $1,693.00
  • Available At: Catch

Best Student Laptops | Stay at Home Mum

 

10. ASUS Chromebook Flip C214 11.6″ Celeron Touch Screen Notebook

The ASUS Chromebook Flip C214 has been specifically designed for school students, it is durable with an all-round rubber bumper, spill-resistant keyboard and ultratough hinge. It folds into a tablet for easy viewing and has a stylus for drawing.

  • CPU: Intel Celeron N4000 1.1GHz
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Storage: 32GB
  • Display: 11.6″
  • Size: 292.1 x 198.12 x 20.32 mm
  • Weight: 1.17kg
  • Price: $699.00
  • Available At: PLEComputers

Best Student Laptops | Stay at Home Mum

 

Whether you choose a base model or a higher end laptop, it is a good idea to get at least a 1-year warranty just in case. It is also wise to invest in some good anti-virus protection software as kids often don’t know what they are clicking on. If you are unable to find a brand-new laptop within your price range, Kogan and Catch also offer refurbished computers with a grading system to help you understand the condition of the machine.

Here’s to a great school year with an awesome new laptop!

 

 

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