By Lou Carlozo, dealnews contributor What a student can't absorb in college classes, he can certainly learn by living on his own; and let's face it, those are the lessons that stick. Long after your child forgets the finer points of calculus and literary criticism, he'll still employ those tutorials in Advanced Bargain Hunting, which he learned out of a necessity for saving. But to keep these bright young minds as far away from the lessons of Dumpster Diving 101 as possible, dealnews has rounded up some of the best budget-friendly furniture deals we could find for college-bound kids. Read carefully and take good notes: There will be a test on this material, and those who save the most will pass with flying colors. Your Zone Mini Futon Store: Walmart Price: $99 with free shipping Lowest By: $50 Is it Worth it?: Speaking as a guy who paid $250 for his first mini-futon almost 20 years ago, this is an incredible find for the price. These futons come in either stadium blue/silver (pictured) or pink and convert into a chair, lounger, or sleeper. Keep in mind that it features a low seat height (11" from the ground), so an extra tall, lanky college kid may find it a tad uncomfortable. It also includes a polyester microfiber cover. Mainstays Metal TV Stand Store: Walmart Price: $79.88 with free shipping Lowest By: $13 Is it Worth it?: Let's face it, you have to put that TV somewhere, and having a dedicated stand allows your collegiate to keep all home entertainment items in one neat place. This particular model supports a flat screen up to 42", and also comes with two storage compartments and five shelves for holding DVD players, stereo units, and the like. The brushed nickel hardware seems plenty durable, given the overwhelming number of 4- and 5-star user reviews for the item. While it doesn't come with any sort of remote that forces your kid to clean up his dorm room, at least it encourages media center organization. Mobile Computer Tower Desk With Storage Store: Walmart Price: $59 plus $9.97 s&h Lowest By: $16 Is it Worth it?: When searching for a computer desk for students, it's wise to consider these three key characteristics: 1) a small overall footprint, 2) a sensible layout with lots of clever shelving design, and 3) wheels in case they want to change positions on a whim. This desk fits the bill on all three accounts. It features nifty storage for a printer or scanner on a shelf above the monitor screen (although a student should beware of falling printouts while slumped over from that all-nighter). Again, this item earns exceptional ratings from Walmart customers. Student Desk and 5-Shelf Bookcase Bundle Store: Walmart Price: $79 plus $7.97 s&h Lowest By: $5 Is it Worth it?: In terms of style, this set earns points for its sleek looks, available in black, alder oak, or white. Remember that you'll need to assemble the items yourself, and at this price point, you're likely getting the durability common to most pre-assembled budget furniture. That said, we've owned budget bookshelves that have lasted almost 20 years and several moves without a hitch. Target Sale: Up to 30% off furniture for small spaces + extra $5 off Store: Target Discount: Up to 30% off plus $5 off orders over $50 via coupon code "I77QSLJ2" Shipping: Most items over $50 receive free shipping Is it Worth it?: Adults who attend the Graduate School of Smart Savings know that Target has year-round deals on cool, well-designed furniture items. Plus, during the store's current "small spaces" sale, there's even a stacking $5 off coupon. Although the Carson Leaning Bookcase looks sleek for $84.99, I'm betting your student will also love the mod angles of the Dolce 4-Shelf Folding Bookcase (pictured) for $54.99 (both prices after the coupon). Lou Carlozo is dealnews' Green Dad columnist. He was most recently the managing editor of WalletPop.com and, before that, a veteran columnist at the Chicago Tribune. Follow him on Twitter— @LouCarlozo63. You can also sign up for an email alert for all dealnews features.