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Essential Study Equipment For All Students

You don’t get a school supplies list for college, so how do you know exactly what is essential to bring with you? This list of basics should keep you well equipped for all of your study needs.


While a tablet and a phone are convenient for a lot of things, when it comes to writing papers, nothing works quite as well as a computer. A handy laptop can travel with you from the dorm, to the library, to the coffee shop.  

A Notebook for Each Course

The easiest way to organize your notes is to have a notebook for each class. Studies have shown that handwritten notes are better for learning and retaining information. When you go to class, leave your computer and tablet behind. You will have to synthesize the information as it comes in and you won’t be tempted by distractions during a lecture.

A Collection of Pencils and Pens

This may seem very basic, but these items are essential to handwritten notes, filling out paperwork, and taking exams. It is also easy for pens and pencils to wander off, so it is helpful to have a large stash. Keep them in your desk, backpack and purse. You don’t want to show up to class without one. 

Folders or Binders

While many courses are going paperless, you are still bound to get paper syllabuses, coursework and papers you need to print. The only way to keep it all straight is to store it in a binder or folder for each subject. File it right away or your dorm room will be overcome with disorganized piles. 


You will have to write papers that are longer than one page. Your professor will appreciate it if you have them stapled together.

A Desk Lamp

Poor lighting can contribute to tired eyes which makes studying even more challenging. You may find that if you have great light you will be able to study longer and with more energy. Many dorms come with desks that have built in lighting. If this is not the case for your housing, consider investing in a desk lamp. 

Highlighters, Colored Pencils

The best methods for studying don’t include highlighting text or notes. However, sometimes color coding your notes can help you organize thoughts and ideas. Colored pencils and highlighters can help visual learners internalize important material. Keep highlighters handy, but don’t use them without engaging the text.


College study supplies are pretty basic. As you are purchasing supplies, think about what is helpful for class and what is helpful around your home. Don’t overlook essential items like tape, paperclips and pushpins. You may or may not use these for your classes, but they will certainly be helpful around your dorm room. 



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