best laptops for college

5 Best Laptops for College – Student Laptop Buying Guide

Last Updated on September 1, 2020 by Karen Maldonado

Best Student Laptops for 2020

Whether you are going back to school or studying online, now is the time to buy the best student laptop. We did all the research needed to come up with the best laptops for college students in 2020.

What makes a good student laptop?

The first thing to look for when shopping for the best laptops for college is portability. The laptop has to be lightweight and easy to carry around between classes.
A good laptop for school has to have long battery life. This will allow you to work from anywhere, indoors and outdoors, without relying on a power outlet.
Another factor we considered is a fast processor, so it will allow you to study any subject, and multitask.
A crisp, vivid screen is a must for a range of study activities, especially for outdoor visibility.
2 in 1 laptops come handy for students, especially with a digital pen where they can take notes.
In this guide, price was not the only factor, so you can find great laptops at different price points.
All the laptops we picked in this student laptop guide, have all the criteria above and more.

For students majoring in engineering see: 5 Best Laptops for Engineering Students



Our overall winner

Lenovo yoga C940
(Image credit: Lenovo)
The Lenovo Yoga C940 is the latest 2 in 1 laptop from Lenovo.
The Lenovo C940 is one of our best picks for best laptops for college. Lenovo packed so many features in this laptop to make it a top choice for students and professionals.
The Lenovo Yoga C940 is light and portable. It weighs less than 3 pounds in spite of its 14 inch screen. That is a plus for a student laptop.
The Yoga C940, built in durable metal casing, is very solid and practical for travel and students on the go.
It flips 360 degrees where you can use it as a tablet or notepad to write notes. It comes with a digital pen which is very handy in class to capture notes.
The C940 battery life is impressive at 15 hours. So you can use the laptop all day and still have some battery juice for entertainment.
In case you need to charge the battery, there is a Rapid Charge feature (with an optional 65W adapter). That gets you 80% of battery life with one hour of charging.
Screen is very vivid and crisp, this is great for students as it is easy on the eyes.
The Intel Iris Plus Graphics are great for all kinds of image intensive work. From photo and video editing to movies and gaming.
The Intel 10th generation processor can handle all this and more.


  • CPU: Intel Core i7 10th Gen
  • Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics
  • RAM: 12GB
  • Screen: 14 inch Full HD touch
  • Storage: 512GB SSD


  • Thin and light
  • 360° flip-and-fold design
  • Durable metal casing
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Fingerprint reader


  • No Micro SD slot
  • No HDMI



An affordable laptop for students

The HP Chromebook X360 14 inch laptop is a great laptop for students. HP built this Chromebook from the ground up to support students in their learning.
The HP Chromebook runs on the Chrome OS, which is cloud based. It boots up fast and connects you to the internet where you can access over 200 Android and G Suite education apps.
The HP Chromebook is durable. It has metal-reinforced corners and can survive a fall off a desk 122 cm test on plywood and 76 cm test on concrete.
The X360 laptop resists spills of coffee or other liquids.
This makes the HP Chromebook practical for students who are on the go.
The Chromebook is versatile with 360 degrees of rotation into four modes.
The HP Chromebook is classroom-ready. It has a long battery life and fast recharging.
What is nice about the HP Chromebook is the Full HD IPS display.

The HP Chromebook’s 14 inch screen is sharp and vivid and has a 178 degree viewing angle. It has a micro-edge bezel and is touchscreen.
The HP Chromebook comes with a USI universal stylus which is a great student tool for taking notes on the go.
The Keyboard on the HP X360 is comfortable and has a numeric keypad, perfect for math and accounting.
The HP Chromebook looks stylish too with a ceramic polished finish.


  • CPU: Intel Celeron N4000
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Screen: 14 inch HD touchscreen
  • Storage: 32GB eMMC


  • Thin and light
  • USI Universal stylus support
  • 360° geared hinge
  • premium metal design


  • Low-res screen
  • Storage memory low



A premium student laptop

best 13 inch laptop - Dell XPS 13
(Image credit: Dell)
The Dell XPS 13 has a touchscreen which is very vivid and bright. you can even use it outdoors. The colors are vibrant and life-like thanks to the 100% sRGB color spectrum and a 1500:1 contrast ratio.
This makes the Dell touchscreen laptop is great choice for students
The Dell XPS has high quality 4 element webcam perfect for Zoom meetings and online learning.
The battery life on the Dell 13 inch laptop is up to 19 hours (on the Full HD model), which is what every student want in a laptop.
The Dell touchscreen laptop is well designed, sturdy and well-designed. This makes it easy for students to carry it from one place to another.


  • CPU: Intel Core i7
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Screen: 13.3” 4K Ultra HD (3840×2160) Touch
  • Storage: 512GB SSD


  • 4K touch screen
  • Quality HD webcam
  • Long battery life
  • Stylish and elegant
  • Sturdy construction


  • Thin. and light



Best 2 in 1 laptop

best 13 inch laptop - HP 13 inch laptop - HP Spectre x360
(Image credit: HP)


  • CPU: Intel Core i7 
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics
  • RAM: 16GB
  • Screen: 13.3″ 4K UHD touch
  • Storage: 512GB SSD


  • 4K touch screen
  • Convertible 2 in 1 
  • HP Digital Pen
  •  Full size back-lit keyboard


  • Battery life
  • No SD card reader



Best Mac laptop for students

best 13 inch laptop - MacBook Air 13 inch laptop


  • CPU: Intel Core i3 10th Gen with Turbo Boost up to 3.2GHz
  • Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Screen: 13.3-inch Retina display with True Tone technology
  • Storage: 512GB SSD


  • Backlit Magic Keyboard and Touch ID
  • 12 hours wireless web battery life


  • SSD and RAM soldered on motherboard
  • All ports are USB-C


The Winner of Best Laptops for College

Our winner in this roundup is the Lenovo Yoga C940, which is one of best laptops for college students. It passed all our tests and criteria.
A 10th generation Intel Quad Core i7 CPU powers this laptop making it fast and capable.
The 12GB of RAM memory is great for today’s students who need to multitask. It is also runs your games without lagging.
A vivid 14 inch screen and Intel Iris Plus Graphics chip lets you enjoy video games, after school.
The 512GB solid state drive (SSD) is plenty of reliable and fast storage.
Add to this the durability and great looks which added together makes the Lenovo C940 on of our top picks.

Best Student Laptops Roundup


Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

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