11 Good Laptops for Online College Majors [Student Guide]

In a time of online classes and distance learning, no other equipment will get you through the semester than a reliable laptop. However, it’s no secret that laptops are very expensive—especially if the specifications you’re looking for are on the higher end of the spectrum.

Our list of eleven good laptops for online college majors covers the spectrum from powerful high-end computers to ultralight portable tablets.

The majors include computer science, architecture, law, film, animation, mechanical engineering, programming, web design, civil engineering, nursing, and medical students. 

Select a major that closest fits your area of study to find the best laptop for online majors. 

Best Laptop for Computer Science Majors

1. Acer Aspire 5 A515-55-56VK 15.6” i5 Laptop for Computer Science Majors

Acer Aspire 5 A515-55-56VK, 15.6' Full HD IPS Display, 10th Gen Intel Core i5-1035G1, 8GB DDR4, 256GB NVMe SSD, WiFi 6, HD Webcam, Fingerprint Reader, Backlit Keyboard, Windows 10 Home
337 Reviews
Acer Aspire 5 A515-55-56VK, 15.6" Full HD IPS Display, 10th Gen Intel Core i5-1035G1, 8GB DDR4, 256GB NVMe SSD, WiFi 6, HD Webcam, Fingerprint Reader, Backlit Keyboard, Windows 10 Home
  • 10th Generation Intel Core i5-1035G1 Processor (Up to 3.6GHz)| 8GB DDR4 Memory | 256GB NVMe SSD
  • 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED backlit IPS Display | Intel UHD Graphics
  • Intel Wireless Wi-Fi 6 AX201 802.11ax | Backlit Keyboard | Fingerprint Reader | HD Webcam | Up to 8 Hours Battery Life

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

CS majors work with many heavy programs like Python, Java, and R Studio that require a powerful laptop to calculate computations quickly. The Acer Aspire 5 is an affordable, all-around performing laptop that can handle nearly every application you throw at it.

Though it’s one of the category’s pricier models, it’s already equipped with a 10th gen i5 quad-core CPU and 8GB of RAM. It even has backlit keys for those all-night programming sessions and an extra RAM slot in case you’ve saved up enough money for an upgrade.

Top Features

  • Up to 8 hours of battery life
  • Fingerprint reader
  • Sizeable 15.6” full HD & IPS screen
  • Multiple ports including USB 3.1 Type-C, USB 3.1 power-off charging, USB 2.0, an HDMI port with HDCP support
  • Lightweight 5.74 pounds
  • Wireless WiFi 6
  • 1-year warranty from defects

Best Laptop for Architecture Students

2. Acer Aspire E 15 15.6” Laptop for Architecture Students

Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM 15.6-Inch Full HD Notebook (Intel Core i3-7100U Processor 7th Generation , 4GB DDR4, 1TB 5400RPM Hard Drive, Intel HD Graphics 620, Windows 10 Home), Obsidian Black
5,095 Reviews
Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM 15.6-Inch Full HD Notebook (Intel Core i3-7100U Processor 7th Generation , 4GB DDR4, 1TB 5400RPM Hard Drive, Intel HD Graphics 620, Windows 10 Home), Obsidian Black
  • 7th Generation Intel Core i3-7100U Processor (2.4GHz, 3MB L3 cache)
  • 15.6" Full HD Widescreen ComfyView LED-backlit Display supporting Acer ColorBlast technology
  • 4GB DDR4 Memory, 1TB 5400RPM HDD

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

Architecture students need to use robust computer-aided design (CAD) and modeling software. Therefore, you’re looking for a laptop for architecture students with a powerful GPU and a moderately sized RAM. The Acer Aspire E 15 already has a dedicated 4GB of DRR4 RAM and Intel HD Graphics 620 GPU blended with 256GB of SSD power.

Due to the sheer number of components needed to support most modeling software, it has a bulkier build than alternative laptops. For the price, budding architects won’t find a better deal.

Top Features

  • 15.6” Full HD widescreen LED screen
  • Up to 12-hours of battery life
  • 1 TB hard drive
  • Fast 802.11ac wireless
  • Acer ColorBlast technology has more than twice as many colors as an average laptop
  • Webcam

Best Laptop for Law Students

3. Acer Chromebook 15 CB315-1HT-C4RY Laptop for Law Students

Acer Chromebook 15 CB315-1HT-C4RY, Intel Celeron N3350, 15.6' Full HD Touch Display, 4GB LPDDR4, 32GB eMMC, 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2, Google Chrome
342 Reviews
Acer Chromebook 15 CB315-1HT-C4RY, Intel Celeron N3350, 15.6" Full HD Touch Display, 4GB LPDDR4, 32GB eMMC, 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2, Google Chrome
  • Chromebook runs on Chrome OS - an operating system by Google that is built for the way we live today It comes with built-in virus protection updates automatically boots up in seconds and continues to stay fast over time (Internet connection is required)
  • All the Google apps you know and love come standard on every Chromebook which means you can edit download and convert Microsoft Office files in Google Docs Sheets and Slides
  • With the Google Play Store you can access a rich library of apps games music movies TV books magazines and more all from your Chromebook

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

  Unlike most degrees on the list, law students don’t need a lot of computing power or high-end graphics due to their intended profession’s documental nature. As such, a laptop with decent CPU power and battery will be more than enough.

An Acer Chromebook 15 will be the perfect laptop for law students. It has 4GB of RAM, an Intel HD GPU, and 32GB of storage. Note, however, that it’s a Chromebook, so it runs on Chrome OS as opposed to your usual Windows. Chrome is designed for faster processes in exchange for limited features.

Top Features

  • 15.6” Full HD IPS
  • Touch display
  • Up to 13-hours of battery life
  • Two full-sized speakers
  • Weighs 5.84 pounds

Best Laptop for Film Students

4. HP Omen 15-ax250wm Laptop for Film Students


HP Omen 15-ax250wm, 15.6' Full-HD IPS Display, Core i7-7700HQ QC Processor, NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti 4GB Graphics Card, 12GB Memory, 1TB Hard Drive
61 Reviews
HP Omen 15-ax250wm, 15.6" Full-HD IPS Display, Core i7-7700HQ QC Processor, NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti 4GB Graphics Card, 12GB Memory, 1TB Hard Drive
  • 15.6" Full-HD IPS Display
  • Intel Core i7-7700HQ (2.8 GHz base frequency, up to 3.8 GHz with Intel Turbo Boost Technology, 6 MB cache, 4 cores)
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (4 GB GDDR5 dedicated) Graphics Card

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

Much like architectural students, film students also need a laptop with a powerful GPU to edit, render, and export videos quickly. A film student needs to pay attention to their display specifications for quality viewing.

The HP Omen 15 has an i7 CPU, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, and a full 15.6 inch of anti-glare IPS display. If you weren’t aware, IPS is the ideal display standard that gives you full RGB coverage. Most budget laptops come in TN (whose color isn’t very good), so Omen 15 is your best bet.

Top Features

  • 12GB of RAM DDR4-2400 SDRAM
  • 1 TB hard drive
  • Bang and Olufsen audio
  • Red backlit keyboard
  • 12.3 ounces
  • 1-year manufacturer warranty

Best Laptop for Animation Students

5. Razer Blade 15 Laptop for Animation Students

Sale
Razer Blade 15 Base Gaming Laptop 2020: Intel Core i7-10750H 6-Core, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, 15.6' FHD 1080p 144Hz, 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, CNC Aluminum, Chroma RGB Lighting, Thunderbolt 3, Black
465 Reviews
Razer Blade 15 Base Gaming Laptop 2020: Intel Core i7-10750H 6-Core, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, 15.6" FHD 1080p 144Hz, 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD, CNC Aluminum, Chroma RGB Lighting, Thunderbolt 3, Black
  • More power: The 10th Gen Intel Core i7-10750H processor provides the ultimate level of performance with up to 5.0 GHz max turbo and 6 cores.
  • Supercharger: The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti graphics is a blazing-fast supercharger for today’s most popular games.
  • More frames: Incredible performance paired with the fast 144Hz 15. 6" full HD thin bezel display helps edge out the win.

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising


Animation laptops are some of the most expensive computers and for a good reason. Not only do they need a very powerful and fast GPU and CPU to render projects efficiently, but an exemplary RGB display and a massive storage capability. 

The Razer’s Blade 15 is a true bargain given it’s loaded with technology. It has an i7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, 256GB of SSD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660, and a 15.6-inch FHD edge-to-edge display.

The Razer Blade is a more affordable laptop for animation students than many $2,500 options because of its shorter battery life at six hours max. Good thing designing and creating animation doesn’t require students to be on the move.

Top Features

  • .78 inches thin
  • Ultralight 4.7 pounds
  • Anodized with CNC Aluminum
  • WiFi 6
  • Gigabit ethernet
  • Thunderbolt 3
  • Ports: HDMI, USB type-A and type-C

Best Laptop for Mechanical Engineering Students

6. MSI GF63 Thin 9RCX-615 Laptop for Mechanical Engineering Students

MSI GF63 Thin 9RCX -615 15.6' Gaming Laptop, Intel Core i5-9300H, NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti, 8GB, 512GB NVMe SSD, Win10
272 Reviews
MSI GF63 Thin 9RCX -615 15.6" Gaming Laptop, Intel Core i5-9300H, NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti, 8GB, 512GB NVMe SSD, Win10
  • Display: 15; 6 inches FHD (1920 x 1080), IPS Level, 60Hz, 45 percent NTSC, Thin Bezel
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 9300H 2; 4: 4; 1GHz
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti 4G GDDR5

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

Mechanical engineering students use processor demanding CAD software for much of their work. They can offset some of the cost by getting a laptop that doesn’t need the biggest and heaviest battery since they use it as a desktop alternative. Much of the creation, presenting, and submitting work is done at home or in the office. An engineer probably doesn’t need a travel laptop for on the go. Therefore, your options are a little broader. This can save money for those frugal consumers. 


The MSI GF63 MSI GV62 is a multipurpose laptop that can be used for gaming, CAD design, and even coding. The battery life is only around 7ish hours, but the laptop easily compensates with a 15.6” inch IPS, 8GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti GPU, and 515GB solid-state storage.

Top Features

  • Ultra-lightweight 4.10 pounds
  • 0.85 thin
  • Optimized to run noticeably cooler and quieter
  • Single-lit keyboard
  • Brushed aluminum chassis
  • 3D surround sound

Best Laptop for Programming Students

7. Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop for Programming Students

Lenovo Legion Y520 Gaming Laptop - i7-7700HQ, 16GB RAM, 256GB PCIe SSD, NVIDIA GTX 1060 (6GB), FHD IPS 1920x1080
38 Reviews
Lenovo Legion Y520 Gaming Laptop - i7-7700HQ, 16GB RAM, 256GB PCIe SSD, NVIDIA GTX 1060 (6GB), FHD IPS 1920x1080
  • 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad Core Processor (6MB Cache, up to 3.8 GHz)
  • 16GB DDR4 RAM / 256GB PCle Solid State Drive
  • 6GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Graphics

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising


For aspiring programmers, the most essential feature is CPU power and speed. The higher your CPU, the more processes you can run at a time, making it ideal for coding.

The Lenovo Legion Y520 touts an impressive i7-7700HQ CPU, 16GB DDR4 RAM, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 GPU. They’ve included a fast 512 GB SSD storage drive.

Its only downside is how the colors aren’t 100% accurate, especially on more high-resolution images, but you don’t need that for programming.

Top Features

  • Anti-glare LED-backlit full HD display
  • Backlit keyboard
  • WiFi AC
  • Weighs 5.2 pounds
  • 3 USB ports (2 on the left side and one on the right side)
  • 1-year manufacturer warranty

Best Laptop for Web Design Students

8. Asus ZenBook 13” Ultra-Slim UX325JA-DB71 Laptop for Web Design Students

ASUS ZenBook 13 Ultra-Slim Laptop, 13.3” FHD NanoEdge Bezel Display, Intel Core i7-1065G7, 8GB LPDDR4X RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD, NumberPad, Thunderbolt, Wi-Fi 6, Windows 10 Home, Pine Grey, UX325JA-DB71
75 Reviews
ASUS ZenBook 13 Ultra-Slim Laptop, 13.3” FHD NanoEdge Bezel Display, Intel Core i7-1065G7, 8GB LPDDR4X RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD, NumberPad, Thunderbolt, Wi-Fi 6, Windows 10 Home, Pine Grey, UX325JA-DB71
  • 13.3 inch wide-view Full HD 4-way NanoEdge bezel display
  • Latest 10th generation Intel Core i7-1065G7 Core Processor (8M Cache, up to 3.9 GHz) with Intel Iris Plus graphics
  • Windows 10 Home

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising


Web designers need laptops that combine an animator’s GPU requirement (though not as intensive) and a programmer’s CPU. Designers use graphic software like Adobe to create your UI and programming software like Atom to write code.

The Asus ZenBook 13 is the best of both worlds. It is equipped with the latest i5 Intel processor, 8GB DDR4 RAM, and 512GB SSD based storage. All the graphics on the system are handled by the built-in Intel HD 620 GPU, which uses device memory as video memory to make graphics-intensive processes go much faster.

The Asus ZenBook 13-inch is so light and portable that it will fit in almost any rolling tote or cart for teachers or students. 

Top Features

  • Ultra-lightweight 2.62 pounds and 13.9mm thin
  • Up to 22 hours of battery life
  • Fast charge: Charge up to 60% in 40 minutes
  • WiFi 6
  • Built-in IR camera for facial recognition
  • Ports include Thunderbolt 3 USB-C, USB Type-A and MicroSD, and HDMI

Best Laptop for Civil Engineering Students: Dell XPS

9. Dell XPS 15 7590 Laptop for Civil Engineering Students

Dell XPS 15 7590, XPS7590-7572SLV-PUS, 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H, 15.6' 4K UHD (3840 X 2160) OLED, 16GB DDR4-2666MHz, 256GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 4GB GDDR5 (Renewed)
15 Reviews
Dell XPS 15 7590, XPS7590-7572SLV-PUS, 9th Gen Intel Core i7-9750H, 15.6" 4K UHD (3840 X 2160) OLED, 16GB DDR4-2666MHz, 256GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 4GB GDDR5 (Renewed)
  • 15.6" 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) OLED InfinityEdge anti-reflective Non-Touch 100% DCI-P3 400-Nits Display
  • 9th Generation Intel Core i7-9750h (12MB Cache, up to 4.5 GHz, 6 Cores)
  • 16GB DDR4-2666MHz, 2x8G

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

Any civil engineering laptop for students needs powerful specifications to run CAD software used for designing public structures. It also needs to have a lasting battery so students can carry it with them to eventual on-site projects.

Aside from a 9th generation i7 Intel processor, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 GPU, this laptop’s power delivery system design is built with multiple transistors.  The transistors allow the machine to operate at different voltages. This means that depending on the power the software needs, the laptop will draw the right amount of voltage to keep itself at an optimal charge.

Top Features

  • 15.6 inch OLED screen
  • 256GB solid-state drive
  • Weighs only 5.51 pounds
  • Ports: Thunderbolt, two USB 3.0, SD card reader
  • 802.11bgn wireless
  • 90% of the laptop can be reused or recycled

Best Laptop for Medical Students

10. HP Pavilion x360 14” 2-in-1 Touchscreen Laptop for Medical Students

2020_HP Pavilion x360 14' FHD Touchscreen 2-in-1 Laptop, Intel Core i5-1035G1 (Up to 3.60GHz), 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Webcam, 802.11ac, HDMI, Bluetooth, Fingerprint Reader, Win10, w/Santax Accessories
10 Reviews
2020_HP Pavilion x360 14" FHD Touchscreen 2-in-1 Laptop, Intel Core i5-1035G1 (Up to 3.60GHz), 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Webcam, 802.11ac, HDMI, Bluetooth, Fingerprint Reader, Win10, w/Santax Accessories
  • 10th Gen Intel Core i5-1035G1 mobile processor 1.0GHz (with Max Turbo Speed of 3.6GHz);Ultra-low-voltage platform. Quad-core, eight-way processing provides maximum high-efficiency power to go. Intel Turbo Boost Technology delivers dynamic extra power when you need it.
  • Beautiful 14" Full HD multitouch screen:The 1920 x 1080 resolution boasts impressive color and clarity. Touch, tap, glide and make the most of Windows 10. IPS technology for wide viewing angles. Energy-efficient WLED backlight.
  • 8GB DDR4 Memory for full-power multitasking; 256GB PCIe SSD + 16GB Optane Solid State Drive (PCI-e) Save files fast and store more data. With massive amounts of storage and advanced communication power, PCI-e SSDs are great for major gaming applications, multiple servers, daily backups, and more. Get up to 15x faster performance than a traditional hard drive.

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising

A medical student’s needs are similar to a law student’s. They don’t need high specifications to do their college work. However, it’s ideal to buy a laptop for medical students that are portable as well. It may need to be used in a lab or while showing as a resident.

The HP Pavilion x360 14” 2-in-1 touchscreen laptop is multifunctional. It’s built with a sturdy but flexible hinge that allows it to be folded outward to look like a tablet. The x360 is lightweight and weighs around 3lbs, and is ultra-thin.

Top Features

  • Weighs only 14 ounces and is 0.71 thin
  • 256GB PCIe solid-state hard drive
  • 801.11ac wireless
  • Fingerprint reader for security

11. Best Laptop for Nursing Majors

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 2-in-1 Laptop for Nursing Majors

2020 Latest Lenovo Chromebook Duet 2-in-1 Tablet/Laptop 10.1' FHD+ (1920 x 1200) IPS Touchscreen- MediaTek Helio 8-Core P60T 4GB RAM 64GB eMMC Webcam WiFi ARM G72 MP3 Chrome OS + iCarp USB C Toggle
76 Reviews
2020 Latest Lenovo Chromebook Duet 2-in-1 Tablet/Laptop 10.1" FHD+ (1920 x 1200) IPS Touchscreen- MediaTek Helio 8-Core P60T 4GB RAM 64GB eMMC Webcam WiFi ARM G72 MP3 Chrome OS + iCarp USB C Toggle
  • This ultraportable 2-in-1 Chromebook includes a fast and stable plug-and-play detachable keyboard enabled with 5-point pogo pin and magnet design
  • Take it with you everywhere! Thin and lightweight the Chromebook Duet offers up to 10 hours of battery life
  • The unique dual-tone design with aluminum alloy on the tablet is a standout design With sophisticated fabric texture on the stand cover you'll be stylish productive and practical

Last update on 2020-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising


Nursing majors need a laptop with two features for their profession: reliable battery life and portability. They take their laptops everywhere they go, whether that’s around the campus or tasked to observe and take notes in a medical facility.

We recommend the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 10.1”. It’s one of the lightest laptops in the market at less than 2 pounds. The Chromebook Duet is extremely portable with a screen size of 10.1 inches and a battery life lasting 10 hours to run applications like Microsoft Office and nursing programs.  Some additional features include WiFi, Bluetooth, webcam, and a backlit keyboard.

Top Features

  • Ultraportable thin and lightweight laptop
  • Touchscreen w/USI pen compatibility
  • 10.1 FHD IPS display
  • Solid-state hard drive

Good Laptops for Online College Summary

There is a good laptop for online college majors, no matter your specialization. You just have to consider the tasks that you need to perform, the necessary specs, and, of course, its price. Do your research, and you’ll choose the right one.

Alternatively, while in college, you can use the laptop to make extra money at home by selling crafts, online tutoring, and other activities to help pay for college—just an idea for those closet entrepreneurs.

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