Laptop Requirement*for students entering in Fall 2014 or later
The WVU Reed College of Media requires its entering freshmen and transfer students (journalism or strategic communications majors) to have their own laptops for use in journalism and strategic communications classes and projects.
Students will also be expected to have access to either a digital camera or a smartphone with a photo resolution of at least 5 megapixels for work they will create in class. It must be able to capture both still photographs and video. This decision was made to help address the growing need for digital skills in the media professions and for our students’ need for continuous access to software for individual and collaborative work.
The College is a Mac-based environment, but students may also use PC (Windows) laptops, as long as they have the minimum specifications, which are noted below for both operating systems. v
Mac Operating System Requirements
15” Macbook Pro Retina $2,479* (minimum specifications recommended for Journalism majors with interests in visual and/or television journalism)
- 2.8GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 4.0GHz
- 16GB 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
- 512GB Flash Storage
- Intel Iris Pro Graphics and NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M with 2GB of GDDR5 Memory
13” Macbook Pro Retina display $1,669* (minimum specifications for all others)
- 2.8GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 4.0GHz
- 512GB Flash Storage
- Intel Iris Graphics
- Backlit Keyboard (English) & User’s Guide
* Prices current as of Spring 2015 from the online Apple Education Store.
Minimum Windows Operating System Requirements**
- Intel Core i5 or i7 CPU or AMD equivalent
- 8GB RAM (or more highly recommended)
- 500GB ATA 100/7,200 RPM hard drive is preferred Students should also consider a 1TB external HD for backup and storage
- A graphics card supporting higher resolution than 1024×768 (32-bit). (1 GB dedicated, non-shared, memory for card is recommended)
- DVD-ROM Drive would be helpful for some courses
- Windows 8.1 Professional or Windows 7 Professional
**Expected cost for this system is approximately $1200.
Adobe Creative Cloud is required of College of Media students. Through a special licensing arrangement, Adobe Creative Cloud is available to WVU students for about $70 dollars per year at http://it.wvu.edu/services/slic/softwarelist . On this site you can find links for other software, including Microsoft Office, which is free to WVU students.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Will financial aid be available to help pay for the laptop or other equipment?
Q. What happens if I have problems with my laptop?
For warranty information, see the WVU Technology Support Center webpage at http://it.wvu.edu/it-units/tsc/purchase/.
West Virginia University offers PC/MAC repair services on campus for all computer brands. For Apple and Dell computers that are under warranty, repairs are given priority and provided at a nominal cost. (See http://it.wvu.edu/it-units/tsc/services for a list of repair policies and prices.) If a student is without his or her computer for an extended period of time because of a repair issue, the College will provide a loaner laptop that can be used during College of Media classes, but the laptop must be returned to the College at the end of each class period. The College continues to maintain desktop computers that are available to students during open lab hours as well.
Q: Can I print wirelessly from my laptop?
Q: What if I am not yet a major in the College?
For more information regarding the College’s laptop requirement, contact the College of Media’s technical support staff at Brett.Collins@mail.wvu.edu.