Computer Specifications

Updated 4/29/13

Gellersen Center and the Donald V. Fites Engineering Innovation Center both have 802.11n wireless networks. For this reason, many students will find it convenient to bring a laptop computer with an appropriate wireless network card installed. This network should be compatible with all new laptops with wireless network capabilities.  If you have questions or concerns please e-mail Laura Sanders, Assistant Dean for Student Success, at

2013-14 Recommended Computer Specifications

These recommendations should serve as guidelines for new PC purchases, but are not absolute.  Purchase a desktop or laptop computer based on your needs and circumstances.  Feel free to e-mail any questions you may have to the Director of Engineering Information Systems at

New Computer Specifications

Operating System--Microsoft Windows 7 or Windows 8 (see Software note below)

Processor--   All Intel and AMD processors currently available on the market are acceptable.  Intel i5 or i7 processors are preferred

Memory- 4GB is acceptable; 8GB is preferred

Hard Drive--500GB or larger

Graphics Card--512MB or larger

Network Card--A network card is required to connect your computer to the campus network. A wireless network card should also be included in a laptop.

Software--An office productivity suite such as Microsoft Office Student Edition is recommended. This can be purchased from your computer vendor or at the campus bookstore.  Google Docs, which is free, will work for many tasks, so if you are on a tight budget you can try using Google Docs on your own computer and Microsoft Office, when necessary, on College of Engineering lab computers.  You could always evaluate your needs for Microsoft Office later.

Notes on Software

The College of Engineering has an agreement with Microsoft which allows its enrolled students to download certain Microsoft software titles free of charge.  The most widely downloaded of these include Windows 7, Windows 8, Project, and Visio.  Students can license each of these titles one time per every two years they are enrolled.

In addition to this free software, all university students are able to license Microsoft Office 365 University at a discounted rate.  A subscription good for four years that can be used on up to two computers can be purchased for $80, provided the licensee has a .edu e-mail address.  An Office 365 subscription can be purchased at this rate from vendors such as Amazon and Best Buy, or directly from Microsoft’s website.