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Computer science student codes using a Surface laptop

March 6, 2023

The best laptops for computer science students

Don’t sacrifice functionality and processing power when choosing a laptop for your computer science coursework. Learn about the functionality that benefits computer science students most. When you’re looking for the best laptops for computer science students, here are the features to keep in mind.

What to look for in a laptop for computer science students

Computer science students spend hours using their laptops in class and at home, which makes the features of their devices crucial for their academic success. Whether you’re purchasing your own laptop or buying one for the computer science student in your life, understanding the features of a great laptop can help you make the right decision.


For students on a budget, plenty of laptops have great features and performance at an affordable price. When looking for a new laptop or 2-in-1 device, consider finding a balance between the features you want and how much it’ll cost you.


For computer science students, the processor should be one of the most important factors when choosing a laptop. Look for a workhorse processor that can handle multiple apps at once.


Along with the processor, Random Access Memory (RAM) helps your laptop run multiple programs quickly. The more RAM a device has, the faster it will run. Choose a laptop with at least 16 GB to avoid a computer that slows you down.


Choose a laptop with enough storage for all of your files and programs. For smaller and more affordable laptops, you may only have 256 GB of storage. More expensive laptops can have as much as 2 TB of storage. Then, there are some laptops that meet you in the middle. Your storage needs will vary based on how you use your computer, but remember you can always access online cloud storage for extra space.


Computer science students might need to connect their laptops to a monitor, TV, or external hard drive. Even if your laptop has only one USB port, you might be able to purchase a dock to connect multiple monitors, your charger, and other devices.


From the classroom to the library to study rooms, computer science students should choose a device that’s portable and flexible. Avoid laptops that weigh more than a couple of pounds, as they’ll likely be a hassle to carry around all day. If you have online classes or club meetings, make sure to buy a device with a good built-in webcam.

How to choose the best laptop for a computer science student

Computer science students need laptops that can handle their high workloads, from programming to data analysis. To choose one that works for you, decide what features matter the most for you and factor in how much money you’re able to invest in your device.

Surface laptops deliver powerful processors and flexible forms at a price you can afford. If budget is a top priority, consider Surface Laptop Go 3, a sleek, powerful laptop that starts at $799.99. If you want our most powerful laptop yet with twice the computing power of other models, Surface Laptop Studio 2 is for you. Compare all Surface devices or take our quiz to help you choose the laptop that will make your computer science classes a breeze.

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