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Student Computer Initiative

A computer is considered essential for study at VCU and personal ownership of a computer is required for enrolled students. However, iPads, netbooks, Chromebooks, Android-based tablets, eReaders, and other similar devices may not be able to run the software needed for some programs and/or specific courses. A personal laptop with Microsoft Windows or Apple macOS, is the most suitable option for a student’s primary computer. Additionally, a Microsoft Surface Pro or MacBook Air may not be sufficient. Students are advised to contact their school for program-specific computing requirements.

Whether you're bringing a laptop you already own, or buying a new one, it should meet these criteria.

  • Have an Intel Core i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 series or greater/equivalent CPU
  • Have at least 8GB of RAM
  • Have a solid state drive (SSD) with at least 250GB of storage
  • Have at least one USB (type A) port and WiFi
  • Have a webcam and microphone
  • Run a current, supported version of Microsoft Windows 10 or macOS

Also strongly encouraged:

Available to Currently Enrolled Students:

  • Current versions of Microsoft Office and Windows 10, as well as Adobe Creative Cloud available through VCU's OnTheHub webstore.
  • Other academic licensed software options such as SPSS, JMP, Mathematica, and more available through VCU Software Center.

students-laptop [View Image]

Minimum computer requirements for new students

View all General Requirements by School.

View graphic version