9 Best Laptops For Graduate Students

Best Laptops For Graduate Students

One thing to bear in mind is that those who are pursuing a doctorate or even a Master’s degree deserve the right laptop. This is because they have a trailer load of paperwork that needs attending to within hours.

The fact is that the professors here usually ask for essays, dissertations, or most times, research papers. And, all these demands for long hours of fact-checking methods and data gathering.

In other news, it is a laptop with high-quality performance that will not disappoint at any time of the day that the graduate student needs.

Understand that, aside from one’s academic level, a good electronic device like a laptop is quite necessary as it makes one’s learning quite easier. Over ninety percent of college students make use of laptops as they sit in class

They practically use it in taking notes, researching, and processing words. It is your trusted laptop that will accomplish every one of these tasks.

The Best Laptops List You Can Buy

Some of the best laptops for graduate students that you can purchase out there are:

1. HP Spectre x360

The first thing to note about the HP Spectre x360 is that it comes in a compact size and is a 2 in 1 laptop. Most people, love its performance, innovation, and the power it wields.

HP Spectre x360 is a 15-inch display laptop that is portable and light enough for graduate students without letting them strain their eyes. Irrespective of whether you are using the laptop to listen during lectures or just chilling with it, its Olufsen and Bang quad speakers deliver premium sounds.

Interestingly, you can make use of this laptop in roughly four different modes amongst which you will find the laptop and tablet mode. Also, it comes with a digital pen that helps one in taking notes
For more important specifications, the HP Spectre x360 makes use of the tenth generation Intel i7-10510U processor. Its WSD storage is 1 TB while this makes use of DDR4 RAM.

You will love the fact that comes with an inbuilt webcam that helps to make the user stay connected with their friends, classmates, and family.

In all, this laptop makes use of Bluetooth 5 and WiFi 6 technology. The battery life is up to sixteen hours though this is highly dependent on the model you purchase. The HP Spectre x360 weighs roughly five pounds, thus placing it on the heavy side.

2. Dell Inspiron 16 Plus

If you need a high-value laptop with top-notch performance then the Dell Inspiron 16 plus is the best bet. It features a 16-inch display, Intel H-series CPUs, and not to forget its Nvidia GeForce RTX graphics.

Best believe that this is a powerful laptop that is capable of delivering graphics of roughly 1080p. While most people claim that this laptop takes over a small piece of the market between the Inspiron 5000 and the XPS 17, the fact remains that the 16 plus has the market to itself.

You will love the fact that this laptop comes with an aspect ratio of 16:10 as a 3K display system. It runs in the eleventh generation Intel Core H-series CPUs Processor. Interestingly, it is a highly affordable system.

It comes with just one display option but has a strong aluminum build. While its key travel is not as deep as you might expect, it surely has a bigger and heavier footprint. More so, the speed of its Processor is at 2 3 GHz.

In all, Dell Inspiron 16 Plus acts as a replacement for the Inspiron 15 Plus. Though it has the same performance hardware as the Dell XPS 15, it comes with a bigger display but the battery size stays the same.

3. Apple MacBook Air 2020

It is noteworthy to state clearly that this is one of the best laptops for graduate students as it is made available on a flexible budget. Apple is making a game-changer with its M1 silicon chip.

This chip makes it perform better than ever as it comes with a good performance and smart battery life. While it is not the cheapest option for graduate students, it surely works with a slightly bigger budget.

It is ideal for grad students because its true tone technology and Retina display give off clearer and brighter images. More so it produces light that can be adjusted to match the color temperature of any environment you find yourself in.

Since most people overlook the keyboard, grad students cannot do that as they will spend most of their time typing. The MacBook Air 2020 offers a backlit feature on its keyboard.

It is possible to even write in low conditions and you can type as fast as you want without being bothered about the sounds made by the keyboard. This laptop is portable and has decent battery life.

Do not be confused by its size because it is lightweight while the battery can last between fourteen to twenty hours with just one charge.

Nevertheless, the MacBook Air 2020 has a RAM of 8GB to 16GB unified memory and a storage of 256GB which can also be upgraded to a 2TB SSD.

4. Microsoft Surface Pro 8

The Microsoft Surface Pro 8 runs on the platform core i5 processor and weighs 1.96 pounds. It is the eleventh generation Intel CPU and has a 13 inches vivid display.

Users are provided with Windows 11 and this system has been considered to be a greater upgrade in the line of Microsoft surface laptops. It behaves similarly to a tablet because of its detachable keyboard
As a versatile device, users can get to customize their RAM size as well as the CPU power to their liking. The latest models of the Pro 7 can be seriously configured to have either a tenth or eleventh Gen core i5 or core i7.

More so, it can be configured to even have the most current Intel Evo core processors. You can configure your RAM from 4GB to 32GB, and the storage size can be configured from 128GB to 1TB.
This laptop is rated amongst the best laptops for graduate students because of its portability and battery life. When paired with a stylus, it easily converts into a tablet. This means it can replace your school supplies like highlighters, textbooks, and even pens.

In all, you can use this system to run 3D models in CAD software using good framerates that are in the viewport.

3. HP Pavilion x360 2 in 1

As one of the best laptops for graduate students, the HP Pavilion x360 works with an eleventh-generation Intel Core i5-1135G7 processor. It allows for the ideal combination that makes the laptop unstoppable.

More so, it comes with a 16GB DDR4 memory and SSD storage of 1 TB. With the HP Pavilion, you are sure of getting a faster performance of up to fifteen times than your normal hard drive.

It comes with a display of 14 inches as well as stunning visuals. The hood of this system is completely slathered in warm gold and at its center, you will find a reflective HP logo. The hood’s edges and deck curve outwards and inwards when they meet.

Thus, they create an hourglass design. You will find a pavilion logo on this system. It comes with a fingerprint reader that is located on the right side of the touchpad. And, the bezels are made to be slim.

In all, you can follow this laptop into a tent and even convert it to tablet mode. Even though converting it will show that its bottom and top parts do not exactly line up the bottom is a bit magnetic so it will stay in a particular position.

You will find a good number of ports on this system which includes a USB 3.0 port, headphone jack, security lock slot, and power button.

6. Samsung Notebook 9 Pro

As an amazing laptop, this laptop comes with a 15 inches full HD resolution at 1920×1080. It also has a touch screen panel plus a stylus pen. It makes use of the fantastic AMD Radeon 540 Graphics plus a graphic memory of 2GB GDDR5.

As an eight-generation Intel Quad-Core i7-8550U Processor, it runs at a speed of 1.8GHz. And it has up to 4GHz and 8 MB SmartCache plus a 720p HD webcam. The performance rate is high and its storage capability allows students to store their pdf files and projects without any hassle.

It comes with a superb battery life consisting of a 4 cell Li-ion polymer that lasts between twelve to fourteen hours. As for its connectivity, it makes use of one USB-C that is up to 5Gbps, 2 USV 3.0, a card reader, 4K display with an optional adapter, and a nice headphone-out/mic-in combo.

In all, you can work around a budget to purchase this amazing laptop when you get to grad school.

7. MSI Prestige 14 Evo

One thing to note about the MSI prestige 14 Evo is that it is capable of bringing together the ideal combination of smart battery life, groundbreaking performance, and immediate wake from its sleep mode.

With this system, you will get to experience immersive displays and amazing colors that are integrated with Intel Iris Xe graphics. The battery is fast charging and you can keep your workspace free of clutter with its thunderbolt 4 which allows you to connect your laptop to both accessories and power with just one cable.

It comes with an inbuilt Intel Wi-Fi 6 technology and is verified by the Intel Evo platform. It runs on the eleventh generation Intel Core i7 processor which enables it to deliver great performance.

This is a lightweight laptop that comes with a micro SD card reader and Thunderbolt 4 ports. This system is crafted for the future as it is ultra-thin and has a light aluminum chassis. Now, you have a portable and stylish laptop.

In all, this laptop is priced reasonably and its 180-degree hinge allows it to be easy to share ideas and content with people.

8. Asus Vivobook S15

This laptop has been able to earn recognition because of its innovative design and of course, next-level operations. It is capable of shining due to its quality build and affordable price.

It runs on an eleventh-generation Intel Core i7-1065G7 quad-core processor. It functions fairly well when compared to laptops with similar CPUs. Its quad-core processor is capable of handling diverse tasks simultaneously. This means you can easily take notes as you browse the Internet with several tabs open.

It comes with 16 GB RAM and lots of power as well as memory for intensifying tasks and even gaming. Its secondary screen offers users swift access to features and programs. The screen measures 5 65 inches.

Interestingly, it has a sturdy tilt design that places the keyboard in an ergonomic position for long typing. With the backlit keyboard, you can efficiently work without having to turn on extra lights.

The Asus Vivobook 15 runs on a speed range of 2.4GHz and 5GHz. With its WiFi technology, you are provided with extended coverage for all tasks.

9. Acer Aspire 7

If you never knew, the Acer Aspire 7 series has been available in the Americana and European markets for a while before getting to India. It is a powerful version of the famous Acer Aspire 5.

It comes with the Nvidia GTX series graphics and Intel’s H series CPU. Its selling point is its price, build, and looks. One can mistake this system to be just a Regular office laptop until you take a closer look.

It does not come with RGB backlighting or flashy red accents, instead, it comes as a plain-looking chassis. It has an all-plastic build while the lid has a brushed finish. Though it is not as solid as an all-metal laptop, it is good enough as a budget laptop.

You can open this laptop with one hand and the hinge gets to open to roughly 180 degrees. It does not come with narrow bezels although they are not so obtrusive. This laptop weighs 2.15kgs which is normal for a 15-inch laptop.

At its left, you will find the Kensington lock slot, HDMI 2.0, two USB 3.2, and USB Type-C. At the right, you will find the DC power jack, USB 2 0 type A, status LEDs, and even a combi audio jack.

This laptop comes with a WiFi 802.11 module and the current Bluetooth 5.0. The keyboard has decent tactile feedback and its touchpad is available with windows precision drivers.

In all, this is one of the best laptops for graduate students that is pretty affordable.

Buying Guide For A Best Laptop For Graduate Students

Some of the things you should consider when trying to purchase a laptop as a graduate student include:

The CPU and RAM

It is amazing to note that the computer processors in laptops have been worked upon and improved greatly over time. So, depending on why you eat to buy a laptop, almost all CPUs will work for your regular workloads.

As for the RAM, it is vest to stick with the rule that says more is better. It is not advisable to purchase a laptop that has less than 8GB RAM. Since RAM are not often user upgradeable, it means that whatever you buy is all the machine has to offer.

The RAM is what determines the number of things you can run at a time and it is available in capacities between 4GB and 32GB. Ensure you look at the correct specifications before your big purchase

The screen

A grad student will spend most of their time looking into their computer screen. This means that your screen will be among the things you have to consider. Some people prefer laptops with matte screens while others prefer glossy screens.

However, the most important thing is the brightness and resolution of the screen. Note that, you do not have to purchase a 4k laptop and the screens that are between thirteen and seventeen inches do not need to be better than the 1540p resolution to be fantastic.

But, you should move away from a laptop that has a display of less than 1080p. When it comes to the brightness, 250nits is the absolute minimum as anything lower will not be good.

The keyboard

When purchasing a good laptop, it is advisable to place your fingers on the keys to test it as you will use the keyboard in typing all your documentation, emails, and diverse articles.

One thing everyone avoids is being stuck with a keyboard that will make your hands tire out quickly or a keyboard that keeps making you have spelling mistakes. Nevertheless, most of the brands out there sell laptops with high-end keyboards.

The battery life

Since laptop manufacturers are known for offering inflated variety life numbers, it is hard to know if you will end up with a good battery. But, you will find it somewhere within the technical specs of the laptop.

You should not buy a laptop with less than 35Wh battery capacity no matter the advert you see out there. When they say a laptop will last for roughly twenty hours, it only means it will last under certain conditions.

And these conditions entail barely seeing what is on your screen and some other things you will have to compromise. Always consider the battery life as this is very vital.

Best Laptops For Graduate Students FAQs

Do I need a laptop as a graduate student?

The short answer is yes. As for the long answer, understand that even regular college students need laptops for their day-to-day activities. As for graduate students, laptops will help them work efficiently and stay up to date with projects and emails.

What is the best laptop I can buy as a graduate student?

The best laptop you can buy will be dependent on your usage and the specifications of the laptop. If you need a laptop that lasts for a long time, then go through our list to find laptops with high battery capacity.

However, if you need a laptop that you can store files without hassles, then purchase one with a big RAM.

Do the best laptops for graduate students have to be expensive?

No, they do not. In our outline above, we have both expensive and affordable laptops. You can take a look at your budget and make your choice. The laptop you buy does not need to break your account as there are decently priced laptops that can do the job you need them to do.


On a general note, we have provided you with some of the best laptops for graduate students. Ensure you read through our list and pick a laptop that fits with your budget to have a good graduate school experience.

Read more: Best Laptops For Physics Majors

Kendrick Norbert

Kendrick is a technology writer who enjoys exploring the latest technologies and sharing what he learns with others. Kendrick offers readers the most reliable information and features about laptops by using the expertise of our research team.

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