Laptop for school?

  1. I will be in the actual nursing program this fall and I am wondering if I should purchase a laptop to take notes on in my classes. Here is a little information: I type faster than I write; there will be a couple of hours between each of my classes; each of my classes will have 80 students.

    Will I be out of place if I take notes on a laptop? Has anyone experienced students taking notes on a laptop while in class? Is it annoying for the other students (I am looking for a very quiet keyboard)?

    Should I use a PDA for notetaking or laptop. The only problem that I can think of with using a PDA is that I won't be able to download my notes until I get home. If I had a laptop I could use the notes right away.

    Thanks for your help.

    Alana Temple
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   LLDPaRN
    Alana
    First, congratulations for getting into the nursing program! . I would say you should wait and see how your classes are before buying a laptop. Although it is more convenient than a desktop, dragging it to and from class could get old real fast (not sure how long/far you have to travel from home to school). As for the lectures, you may not have to take as many notes as many instructors now use PowerPoint for their lectures and often provide printed copies of the slides for their students, so you don't have to take as many notes (that's what they did in my master's program). The benefit to taking your PDA is that you could buy a keyboard and also the program "Documents To Go"--that way you can type any notes right into Microsoft Word then hot-sync when you get home. Also, a PDA and PDA keyboard are much smaller than a laptop! As I said above, I would wait and see how much info you are provided during lectures--do you have any friends who went thru the program before you? Maybe they can give you an idea of what lectures are like and how much notetaking you have to do.

    As far as whether you would be out of place taking notes on a laptop, my gut feeling is that you would not--from what I've heard, many students take their laptops to class these days.

    Good luck and give me an update as to what you finally decide

    Laurie
    Not-so-newly-minted MSN
  4. by   Alana
    Thanks for your quick reply. I commute 1 hour each way to school. I will be at school from 7 - 5:00 every day. My main goal is to do as much of my studying inbetween classes so I can spend some time with my kids after school. I thought that if I got a notebook computer, I would be able to write papers, make up study sheets and keep track of my notes.

    Thanks again for your reply, it is helpful. I will keep you informed with my decision.

    Alana
  5. by   Berta
    Hi Alana,
    I am planning to use my husbands old laptop. From previous experience, I won't use it in class. I will use it afterward in the library to retype my notes. I would get too distracted trying to use it in class, plus I am parinoid that the thing will crash and I'll lose all my notes. I think the other factor that scares me is that it could get broken or stolen. We've had a lot of issues at my school with nursing notebooks being taken, I'd feel terrible if the laptop got stolen.
  6. by   francine79
    In my opinion, I feel that writing notes is alot better than typing. When you type you aren't really "thinking" about the material. Your just beating away at the keyboard. However, when you write notes, you are thinking about the material which in the end, I believe, helps you out alot more as far as knowing the material.

    I used to read the book and sit at the computer and type my notes because I'm such an organized freak. However, I realized after I was done I didn't have a clue what I'd read or typed.
  7. by   ava'smomRN
    I agree with francine79
    I take notes on regular pen and paper or on my palmtop since it has handwriting recognition. If i write my notes, I will usually type them onto my computer when i get home, and if i use my palmtop i download it to my computer. I dont like the idea of putting my notes directly onto the laptop because i dont actually read them. But it's a good idea to use a palm top, i will put my notes on it and since it's so small i can carry it anywhere. you can also buy the little memory sticks, and save the info to the memory rather than the palmtop(like a floppy disk)
  8. by   Wren
    When I was in nursing school (ok....I am dating myself now) laptops weren't really an option :wink2: but I did go home and type my notes. I am one of those people who learn by reading and outlining the material I am trying to learn and I also type very fast. Since you are going to be spending your day at school, I think you'll benefit from having a laptop, even if you only use it at the library or the coffeeshop.

    It might not hurt to wait until school starts though and see what the resources at the school are like. Some nursing schools have computer labs and you can bring your own disks and use their computers.

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