Online Colleges that Offer Laptops

Online Colleges That Offer Laptops (1)

The usage of technology in schools has skyrocketed since the early 2000’s. The majority of college classes now require students to have personal laptops. Obviously, a computer is a requirement for online courses, but some universities have gone as far as mandating that students have a laptop before enrolling in classes. Sadly, this requirement hinders certain students from enrolling.

In order to help students qualify for classes and save money, many colleges are now offering free laptops to students who attend online classes. The cost of the laptop is often packaged with the tuition payment or assessed as a one-time or ongoing fee. Some schools allow students to borrow school laptops that are to be returned to the school upon graduation. Both of these options allow students to have a laptop so they can take college courses online. Whatever the agreement, students can enjoy cost-savings running from $300-$2,000 by choosing a university that offers laptops.

17 Online Colleges Offering Free Laptops to Students

Below is a list of 17 of the most popular online universities that provide laptop programs.

If your college is not on this list, they still might offer laptops or iPads. Contact your advisor to ask about your school’s laptop program.

7 Online Colleges that Offer iPads Only

7 Online Schools offering deep discounts on laptops for students

Most colleges and universities offer some sort of discount for students to purchase both software and hardware needed for classes. If you do not see your school listed here, contact your school or search their website for “computers” or “laptops”.

Laptop Program Types

There are several laptop program options that colleges offer their students. Here are the three most common types with their explanations.

Loaner Laptops

Students are given to laptops to use while they are enrolled at the school. The laptops must be returned upon graduation, transfer, or leaving the school. The laptop is not technically free to own, but free to use.

Early Graduation Gifts

A school will allow a student to use the laptop while enrolled. If the student completes the program, then the school gives the ownership to the student. If the student leaves the school, it must be returned. The computer belongs to the school until the student graduates. This is an added incentive to graduate.

Payment Plans

Some colleges set up payment plans by which the student gradually pays off the price of the laptop. This allows students to spread their spending throughout their college years. The payments may be tacked on as a school fee or as a separate bill. This option is more like a rent-to-own laptop program. By the time the student graduates, the laptop will belong to him or her.

Why do online schools give students free laptops?

A student with a laptop is a student that can study and do homework wherever they may be.

Online schools know that students need a laptop or PC in order to do any online work. Since all the classes are online, it only makes sense that this needed utility be provided by the school. Offering a free laptop to their students allows students to not have to worry about another big, out of pocket expense in order to enroll. By removing this barrier to entry, online colleges give students a chance to enroll wherein they may not have before–all due to the fact that the student could not afford a laptop. There is also the monetary benefit to both colleges and students. In essence, if a laptop is the only thing holding you back from attending a specific university, they are happy to oblige you as a full tuition paying student.

Typical Technology Needs for College Students

It has become common-place for teachers to require technology to be used in and out of the classroom. The technology needs for each type of major or program differs. For example, graphic design courses will require a laptop with a good graphics card, music production classes require a good sound card and a lot of RAM, while a business course may require nothing more than a basic laptop with Excel and Word.

The table below offers cost guidelines for some of the technology that students may need for their programs.

Windows Laptop Dell Latitude E7440 Touch $1,949
Windows Ultrabook Acer Aspire $1,450
Apple Laptop Top of the line MacBook Pro with Retina display, OS X $1,999
Apple Laptop Ultra Notebook MacBook Air $800
Chrome OS Samsung Chromebook 2 (Wi-Fi, no hard drive, cloud storage) $351
Apple Tablet iPad Air $499
Android Tablet Samsung Galaxy Note $549
Windows Tablet Dell Venue 11 Pro $499
Amazon Fire OS Amazon Kindle Fire HDX $379
Android Phone Samsung Galaxy S5 $199
Apple Phone Apple iPhone 5s $199
Windows Phone Nokia Lumia 925 $299
Laptop Lock Cable, combination lock $20-$40
Noise-cancelling headphones Headphones or in-ear buds $25-$550
Smart Pen Livescribe 8GB Sky Wi-Fi Propack $199.50
Laptop-cooling Pad Logitech N315 Portable Lapdesk $19.95
MiFi Verizon Jetpack 4G LTE Mobile Hotspot $19.99, plus monthly service fee
USB Flash Drive Kingston Digital DataTraveler SE9 64GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive $28

Online Colleges That Offer Laptops FAQs

Q1: When is the laptop received?

A1: Laptops are typically given to new students the day the student becomes an official student of the online college in which they enroll.

Q2: Do you get to keep the laptop?

A2: The laptop is property of the university. Some universities allow the students to keep the laptop. Others require the laptop to be returned. The majority of online colleges that offer laptops allow students to keep the laptop upon successful graduation from their college.

Q3: What if the laptop gets lost or stolen?

A3: Generally, if a student loses the laptop or it is stolen, the student pays for it at a reduced rate. The student has to report the stolen laptop to the police. Once the report is filed by the police, a replacement laptop may be purchased at a reduced rate.

Further Resources:

Best College Laptop Guide on LaptopNinja.com

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  • Nayla
    August 13, 2016 at 7:40 am

    I need a laptop

    • Edsmart
      September 14, 2016 at 8:43 pm

      You can contact one of the schools above that offers laptops to their students. If you do not see your school of choice, reach out to your current or prospective college(s) to ask about their laptop programs. If they do not offer free laptops, you may be able to still borrow the laptop for the semester(s) in which you are enrolled.

    • mike
      September 20, 2016 at 9:23 pm

      I need a laptop I am disabled I don’t have a lot of money trying to find a job

    • August 20, 2017 at 6:01 pm

      I need laptop start school

    • Jose
      September 24, 2017 at 5:32 am

      I need a laptop for school

  • Brittany
    October 23, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    I am looking for the best online school which has a excellent program for physical therapy majors. I will need a laptop and printer as well so I will be able to work from home. In the fall is when I will be looking to start my classes. I’m a working mother so I am busy majority of the time; I just need help finding the best school!

    Thank You for your time!

  • KERA
    November 17, 2017 at 6:37 pm


  • Jessemere ford
    November 21, 2017 at 1:24 am

    Hello ,im jessemere ford, i am havinga hard time getting a lsp top to attend , my physiology classes. A laptop is only thing stoping me from starting online classes,can you help me.

  • Misha Ndupu
    November 21, 2017 at 7:35 pm

    I’m looking for the best online school which has a excellent program for medical coding , I need help getting my diploma first. I can’t afford a laptop and printer so I can work from home. I just need help finding the right school!

  • Michael Stephens
    December 24, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    I need a laptop to start the process I got a grant and would accept any help in getting one

  • Cassidy Gensert
    January 13, 2018 at 5:39 am

    Hi I am trying to find a laptop for college classes and I have found one that actually takes payments. I start classes in August and tight budgeting right now.

  • Curtis Callaway
    January 16, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    May I Please be considered for a Loaner Laptop so that I can start training with online courses. Thanks..

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