What a strange year this has been. For those just starting university, or those returning to complete their degree, uni-life can be a difficult adjustment. Most students are studying at home or in their student digs, and attending seminars and lectures online. Even socialising with new friends has moved to online video calling sites like Zoom.
Working remotely can be a challenge for anyone, especially when you’re in a new city for the first time- or sharing a room with your younger sibling at home! But with the right tech and gadgets, completing your degree can be a more efficient and enjoyable experience. You can keep up with friends, assignments and attend meetings easily – keeping you well connected. Whether you’re staying at home or in halls, we’ve come up with some must-have devices to help you with your studies and social life this semester.
Of course, for most students a computer of some sort is an essential piece of kit. No matter what stage in your degree you’re at, having a reliable and fast computer is a great way to stay on top of research projects or essays. Laptops are a great option for many because it means you can take it to lectures or study sessions in the library. If you’ve chosen to complete your degree at home this year, then you have more options for what device you can use. Instead of a laptop, you could get a desktop PC instead to provide you with great speed and functionality.
If it’s a laptop you’re looking for, then we’d suggest a laptop that has an inbuilt webcam for video calls and attending student virtual parties. So that you can work effortlessly and play movies and games without hassle, you should go for a laptop with a screen of 14-inches or more. You’ll also want a computer that has a great battery life, nowadays you can easily find a laptop with over 10 hours of battery-life. Great for when you’re doing some last-minute revision in the library, you won’t need to worry about losing charge! A good laptop will also have a solid amount of memory and extra USB ports for different memory sticks.
A small form factor PC could also be a great option. If you’re currently staying at home, but planning on moving to university next year, then having a mini desktop could be a great alternative to a laptop. Small and compactly built, these computers pack a lot of superb features. They take up such little room, so if you share a space with an annoying sibling, you can easily move it out of the way if needs be. These smaller towers provide users with the same power as a traditional desktop PC. All you’d need is a monitor and peripherals to complete a great set-up for your studies.
“Peripherals” is a posh word for extras such as keyboards, mice and anything else you might need to improve your overall experience with your computer. Even if you own a laptop, having a separate mouse and keyboard can really improve your comfort when writing or browsing the internet for long periods of time. If you own a desktop PC, then peripherals are a must have. You can now find keyboards and mice that are adapted to make you more comfortable, such as wrist-rests and ergonomic features. And for all you lefties out there, you can even pick up a left-handed mouse!
Other things to consider is a laptop stand. Having one will help keep your laptop screen at eye level for a better viewing angle when you’re video calling your Mum to ask how to use a washing machine. A good laptop stand can also keep your laptop well ventilated and keep your workspace tidy.
If you’re wanting work even more efficiently when you’re at uni, then you should consider having a dual monitor set up. Having an extra monitor connected to your desktop or laptop could help you to easily multitask different projects. It could also improve your viewing quality for when you want to watch a movie! Having a dual monitor is easy to set up and is more affordable than you’d think. If you need more information about setting up dual monitors, you can watch this video!
If you like gaming or listening to music when you’re trying to relax, then you should invest in a great pair of headphones. This also means that you won’t disturb other people when you’re listening to your favourite playlist whilst studying.
Are you sitting comfortably?
Working at a desk for long periods of time can get uncomfortable. It’s important to have the correct chair for when you’re sitting at your computer writing those long essays. A good office chair will have height adjustability options and supportive arm rests. And if the chair spins, then that’s even better! You can find a great quality office chair for less than you’d think! So, you can start spinning to your hearts content.
We hope you’re settling into your studies, whether you’re staying in halls or at home. We’re sure these gadgets and tech essentials will help you with your workloads and keeping in contact with your friends! For more information about going back to uni, have a read of these articles below.