Laptop or PDA???

  1. Okay, this may seem like a silly question--in fact; I'm not even sure I'm posting it in the correct place.

    Anyhow, I'm trying to decide if I need to purchase a laptop for school. I'm starting in August and will be commuting. I've heard that some nursing students prefer PDA's. Anyone out there use either? What are the benefits of having one or the other?
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  2. 16 Comments

  3. by   HisTreasure
    Quote from jennielynn
    Okay, this may seem like a silly question--in fact; I'm not even sure I'm posting it in the correct place.

    Anyhow, I'm trying to decide if I need to purchase a laptop for school. I'm starting in August and will be commuting. I've heard that some nursing students prefer PDA's. Anyone out there use either? What are the benefits of having one or the other?
    I have a PDA, and there is nothing really I can't do on it. It's much more travel-friendly than my *old* laptop. As a matter of fact, there are many, many wonderful programs for nurses on the PDA, which are downloadable as demos, and install to a memory stick. May I suggest you do a search (top button) for PDAs. You will get like six pages worth of threads, which will give you virtually all the information you could possibly need. Good luck!
  4. by   jennielynn
    Thanks a million for the info! I just don't want to be too quick to spend my money unless I know I'll get good use out of it!!!
  5. by   RNNoMore
    If it's a choice between the two, I'd go for PDA. Laptop batteries run out much too quickly to be of much use when you are at school all day (know from experience - mine only just gets me through my Microbiology lecture).

    I'm presuming you've already got a desktop computer at home for writing papers and doing research. If not then you can buy both a desktop AND a decent PDA for the price of a laptop

    Paint
  6. by   IowaKaren
    You can buy a lot of pencil's and paper for much cheaper. I found having a small voice recorder to be nice, but really, too many hours to re-listen to classes. Just be a good student and don't miss classes or clinical, read your material, and study from notes taken in class will bring you success if you want it bad enough. It isn't easy but you can do it!
  7. by   jennielynn
    Thanks for the answers gang! I do have a desktop @ home. And I don't think I'll be using a laptop for taking notes. It's much faster for me to write (and sticks in my brain more) to take notes. I will have time in between classes for research and such--but we have a computer lab and library equipped for that!

    I've read certain places that pda's are becoming more popular among the medical fiels. Ijust didn't know how helpful they'd be for a nursing student!
  8. by   HisTreasure
    Quote from jennielynn
    Thanks for the answers gang! I do have a desktop @ home. And I don't think I'll be using a laptop for taking notes. It's much faster for me to write (and sticks in my brain more) to take notes. I will have time in between classes for research and such--but we have a computer lab and library equipped for that!

    I've read certain places that pda's are becoming more popular among the medical fiels. Ijust didn't know how helpful they'd be for a nursing student!

    That really depends on you. I am a computer nerd, so it is great for me. I have my Pepid, Taber's, RNotes, Netter (anatomy), 4.0Student (keeps track of assignments, notes, and keeps a running tally of your grade as you input assignments), Merck manual, Big Clock, some other med programs, and a couple of games for mental relaxation. I have a 16 MB internal, 128 MB memory stick installed. Do what is best for you. Search ebay, though. I got my Sony Clie SJ22 for under $50 including S&H and my memory card was $25 with S&H. Both were new in package!
  9. by   raven31
    i have both and laptop is the way to go. can't do much on a pda.
  10. by   LauraLou
    I have a PDA. I bought a keyboard for it and use it to take notes in class. I also have a medical dictionary, medical abbreviations, Pepid and other software on it that I use while at school. It fits in my purse, so I don't have to worry about leaving it in the classroom during breaks, like a laptop. I love mine!
  11. by   Loraineo
    Hi
    While I was in school I used a laptop. Took it to the hospital when I was getting pre-assignment and typed everything in it right there. I was able to cut my care plan/preassigment time in half. Also since I saved all of these each year got easier because I already had a lot of the disease done. Everyone is different so this one worked for me.
  12. by   RedSox33RN
    I just bought a laptop about a month ago for nursing school, and since then, I've only used my desktop a few times. I hate being "stuck" in one place now, at the desk.

    I do plan on getting a PDA though. I got a fairly big laptop from Dell - no lightweight. I can't imagine hauling to every class, and someone mentioned the battery - they do run out quickly, even with all the power-saving options on. Plus I've heard about all the great software and drug books for them, so it seems like a logical next step.

    I did buy the laptop so I could do homework in Word and stuff like that. I have a long commute, and may stay over at a friend's if the weather is nasty, so it will be good to have my laptop.
  13. by   GPatty
    I prefer my laptop. I take it with me and am able to do all sorts of neat things on it. The battery does run out too quickly though. I never thought to download Tabers or things like that on it though!
    What a great idea!
    What else do you all have on your laptops?
  14. by   jennielynn
    So, if I decide to buy a laptop--I can still download all that great stuff onto it just like a PDA, right? Please excuse me if I sound clueless--I'm really not computer-savvy; YET!!!

    I must admit; a pda sounds very appealing--especially since I won't have to carry around a bunch of extra books. I was just worried that it would become as expensive as a laptop until I got done downloading all the programs I would need.

    A laptop sounds appealing because I can use it in between classes when the library computers are full. I also have a 45 minute commute and if need be--I can spend the night in the dorms if I get caught in bad weather.

    I guess eventually I will have both--just wondering which is more practical to buy now!

    You can buy extra batteries for the laptops, right???

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