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Stand Up!

We’ve all heard about the dangers of sitting for too long. Are there quiet places on campus to study on a laptop while standing up that are comfortable for someone over five-foot-six-inches tall? Although super cool, the counter height tables in the Research Commons are too low.

—The Standing Grad Student

What a great question! Yes, indeed, sitting is verboten now. It was hard to get a definitive list of standing opportunities on campus, but here are a few options to get you started: As you mentioned, the counters in the Research Commons. They have outlets and space for your laptop, but are low for taller students. Could you just stack some big, heavy books and make yourself a stand? The Odegaard Library also has counters, with the same pros and cons as before. The H-Bar coffee shop in the Physics Astronomy Building has tall tables and counters, but is not exactly a formal studying space. The Suzzallo Lobby and Allen North both have desktop computers on counters, so if you can work on a UW computer, that might be an option. We’ll post this question on the Graduate School Facebook group page and solicit suggestions.

And don’t despair, some sitting is not bad; and sometimes sitting feels so good. If you don’t have a standing desk, just stand up at regular intervals. This alternative position also definitely looks doable. Good luck!

Ask the Grad School Guru is an advice column for all y’all graduate and professional students. Real questions from real students, answered by real people. If the guru doesn’t know the answer, the guru will seek out experts all across campus to address the issue. (Please note: The guru is not a medical doctor, therapist, lawyer or academic advisor, and all advice offered here is for informational purposes only.) Submit a question for the column →