This is the third in a series of tips for new law students wondering what computer to buy for law school:
I’ve been curious about using a Tablet PC in law school. These are laptops that allow you to write on the screen and hold them like a tablet of paper. The Student Tablet PC blog discusses the benefits that Tablet PCs have for students in its Tablet PC FAQ.
I have never used a Tablet PC and I have never seen one in law school. However, a Tablet PC could be useful to law students in many ways. With a Tablet PC a law student could—
- Download cases from WestLaw or Lexis and underline, highlight, or make notes right on the case
- Draw diagrams the professor writes on the board directly into the law student’s notes
- Easily make arrows from one note to another to show a relationship
- Scan notes into your Tablet PC and easily flip between them and your notes
- Utilize the additional features for Tablet PCs in Microsoft OneNote
- …and probably more.
After law school, a Tablet PC could be useful to practicing attorneys. There are times that using a laptop would not be appropriate, but holding a Tablet PC like a notebook and taking notes on it would be acceptable. And when you get back to the office, your notes are already on your computer—you don’t have to enter them onto the computer.
One drawback to Tablet PCs is they are more expensive than regular laptops. Here is a Tablet PC under $1,000, but it is not as thin as more expensive Tablet PCs.
I would recommend a Tablet PC to new law students because of the benefits a Tablet PC seems to offer law students. But since I haven’t used one, this recommendation may not be worth much.
Have any of you used a Tablet PC? Have you seen other law students use them? Or do you have an opinion on using Tablet PCs in law school? If so, please post a Comment here.