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The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide for Adult Learners

gift guide for adult learners

The holidays come with plenty of delicious food and cheery festivities . . . and stressful gift buying. You want to give your loved ones something practical that they’ll actually use. But it’s easier said than done!

We might not be able to help you choose the perfect present for your Great-Aunt Ida, but we do have some gift ideas for the adult learner in your life. When it comes to gifts for college students, we’ve got you covered.

We talked to adult college students to round up this list of holiday gifts for adult learners. One of them is sure to bring a smile to your loved one’s face this holiday season!

13 Holiday gifts for adult learners

1. A tablet

Adult college students are constantly on the go between work, class and home life. A tablet gives them a portable way to keep all of their notes with them so they can go from work meetings to class without breaking a sweat. Your adult learner will love the Surface 3 tablet. It’s compatible with a keyboard for writing papers and a stylus if they’d prefer to take notes the old fashioned way!

2. Restaurant gift cards

Adult learners are responsible for their education and putting food on their family’s table. It can be a lot to handle! Help them out with a gift card to their favorite restaurant. Whether they’re getting food for the whole family or they’re grabbing a bite to eat in between work and class, this is one gift they’ll be sure to appreciate.

3. Resume editing services

Once graduation day is behind them, adult learners still face the challenge of finding a job. Help them kick off their career by giving them a free round of resume editing! Your loved one will thank you for a thoughtful gift that also provides a huge confidence boost as they apply for jobs.

4. Headphones

Adult learners have to squeeze studying into their day wherever they can find the time . . . and that doesn’t always mean they’re guaranteed peace and quiet. A pair of quality headphones can block out distractions and help them concentrate with their favorite tunes. These Edifier H650 headphones are lightweight and perfect for on-the-go college students.

5. A wireless printer

College classes come with plenty of homework. Adult learners don’t always have time to run to the library every time they need to print a paper, and no one likes fighting with outdated technology at home. Give them an upgrade with a wireless printer like this HP Envy 5540! Students will always get their homework done on time thanks to this all-in-one printing machine.

6. An ink cartridge refill subscription

The ink cartridges in that wireless printer won’t last forever. An Instant Ink subscription will come to the rescue so your adult learner is never stuck with an empty ink cartridge an hour before a big paper is due. This practical service means one less distraction to take your favorite adult learner away from their studies.

7. Meal planning services

Your adult learner may rely on take-out, but we all need a home-cooked meal once in a while. Meal planning services like Blue Apron make it easy for adult college students to whip up a gourmet meal for their family without cutting into homework time. These services deliver fresh ingredients and recipes right to your doorstep—what more could a busy college student ask for?

8. Free babysitting

Every parent needs a breather from their kids once in a while, and that’s especially true for adults who have gone back to college. Give them a night off parenting duty by offering your babysitting services! Whether they choose to get some homework done or enjoy a rare night on the town, they’ll jump at the chance to have some grown-up time.

9. House cleaning services

Adult learners are living the ultimate balancing act as they juggle family, work and school. It’s easy for routine household tasks to fall to the bottom of their priority list. Hiring a cleaning service to spruce up their home is sure to brighten their day! They’ll be thinking of you as they study in their sparkling clean home.

10. A first class backpack

Adult learners are often schlepping books and papers from work to class with no time to stop home in between. They need a bag that can hold its own and looks professional enough for the workplace. The Brookline bag and the Cambridge bag from Lo and Sons are both sophisticated options for working college students.

11. Contributions toward academic regalia

Students expect to spend money on tuition and books, but academic regalia is one expense that often catches them off guard. Those fancy gowns and mortarboard graduation hats don’t come cheap! Your favorite adult learner will walk a little lighter at graduation thanks to your chipping in for their regalia costs.

12. An Amazon Prime subscription

With its free two-day shipping, Amazon Prime is a great treat for adult learners. Whether they’re using it to buy textbooks or stock up on household supplies, there’s no doubt that this service will save them time and money!

13. A coffee maker

Adult college students rely on caffeine to get them through everything from midterms to their kids’ soccer tournament, but they don’t always have time to battle long lines at a coffee shop or wait for their morning jo to finish brewing at home. This Bunn coffee maker solves that problem–it brews a full pot in 4 minutes flat!

Spreading good tidings & cheer

You’ll be sharing the joy this holiday season thanks to these 13 gifts for college students. The adult learner in your life will be thrilled with these practical gifts they’ll use on a daily basis as they balance school, work and family.

Are you an adult learner? Send this gift guide to your loved ones to give them some great gift ideas. Be sure to share any ideas we forgot in the comments below!


Ashley Brooks

Ashley is a freelance writer for Collegis education who writes student-focused articles on behalf of Rasmussen College. She believes in the power of words and knowledge and enjoys using both to encourage others on their learning journeys

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