Student Laptop Recommendations and Financial Reimbursements

Purpose


To meet the academic expectations associated with remote classes this Spring 2021 semester, many students may need to purchase a personal computer.

The goal of this program is to provide financial assistance to students who plan to purchase a computer, as well as providing the hardware and software standards and recommendations to ensure the computer purchase meets individual academic needs.

Thanks to the generosity of University donors, all students purchasing a computer to meet academic expectations associated with remote classes during the Spring 2021 semester are eligible for a reimbursement of up to $200 to assist with this purchase.

Once you have purchased your laptop, please email a photo of your receipt along with your student ID number to [email protected]. That email will serve as your request for reimbursement up to $200. Reimbursements awarded will be credited to your student account and refunded via direct deposit or check.  Reimbursements via direct deposit will be processed twice weekly—getting the funds to you sooner.  Reimbursements via check are mailed out once weekly on Fridays.  To sign up or review your direct deposit, log into MyFSU, click on the Student tab, MyAccount Quick Link, then the Direct Deposit Quick Link.  Be sure to see “Your Direct Deposit information has been changed” to confirm you updates were submitted successfully.

IT Services has provided the following recommendations for student computing devices and strongly recommends the use of a Windows device for academic coursework unless the academic program specifies another device is required. 

Although IT Services recommends the laptops below, you do not have to purchase one of the recommended laptops to be eligible for the $200 reimbursement.  Any student who recently purchased a computer to meet the academic expectations for Spring 2021 may also be eligible for the $200 reimbursement.   

Application


This standard applies to students that already have a laptop or plan to purchase a laptop to use as a student at Ferris State University.  

Exceptions


Some academic disciplines, such as Technology, Game Design, Science, Art and Design, may have higher or additional requirements.  Please check with your academic program for any special requirements concerning hardware and software. 

For questions about the recommended laptops, please contact the appropriate vendor.  If you have questions regarding financial reimbursement, please contact [email protected].

Windows Devices


Windows devices are recommended for academic coursework unless another device is specified by the academic program. Dell devices can be purchased directly through the Member Purchase Portal at a discounted rate. Students will need to create an account and complete the purchase using their Ferris.edu email address to qualify for the discounted pricing. IT Services has provided recommendations for technical specifications below.

Standard Laptop

Recommended for email, Microsoft Office, Internet use, lightweight software applications (i.e. Adobe Reader, iTunes).

  • Current Windows Operating System*
  • Intel i5 processor
  • Minimum 8GB RAM (Memory)
  • Minimum 256GB SSD (Solid state drive)
  • Integrated graphics
  • Integrated webcam and microphone
  • Wireless Connectivity
  • In good working condition
  • Administrator account access**

Advanced Laptop

Recommended for programs using Adobe Creative Cloud applications, Autodesk applications, and other graphic intense applications, i.e. game design software.

  • Current Windows Operating System*
  • Intel i7 processor
  • Minimum 16GB RAM (Memory)
  • Minimum 512GB SSD (Solid state drive)
  • Discrete graphics card with at least 4GB of dedicated VRAM
  • Integrated webcam and microphone
  • Wireless Connectivity
  • In good working condition
  • Administrator account access**

Shipping times vary by device and specifications.

*Please check with your academic program to confirm any special requirements concerning hardware and software. Chromebooks and similar browser-based computers do not meet this standard.

**All personal computers will provide this by default.  If your computer is owned by your employer or other entity, you may not have an Administrator account.

Apple Devices


If an academic program requires or a student desires to purchase an Apple device, these can be purchased directly through the Apple Education Store at a discounted rate. Students will need to complete the purchase using their Ferris.edu email address to qualify for the discounted pricing. IT Services has provided recommendations for technical specifications below.

Standard Laptop

Only recommended if the academic program suggests or requires macOS. Good for email, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint ONLY), Internet use, lightweight software applications (i.e. Adobe Reader, iTunes). Printing via Equitrac in the Residence Halls is not compatible with macOS Catalina and beyond.

  • Current Mac Operating System*
  • Intel i5 or Apple M1 processor
    • Note: Apple’s M1 processors may have compatibility issues with some software
  • Minimum 8GB RAM (Memory)
  • Minimum 256GB SSD (Solid state drive)
  • Integrated graphics
  • Integrated webcam and microphone
  • Wireless Connectivity
  • In good working condition
  • Administrator account access**

Advanced Laptop

Only recommended if the academic program suggests or requires macOS. For programs using resource intensive software such as Adobe Creative Cloud, Autodesk (see Mac-compatible applications), and game design applications, IT Services strongly suggests verifying the applications required are compatible with macOS. Printing via Equitrac in the Residence Halls is not compatible with macOS Catalina and beyond.

  • Current Mac Operating System*
  • Intel i7 or Apple M1 processor
    • Note: Apple’s M1 processors may have compatibility issues with some software
  • Minimum 16GB RAM (Memory)
  • Minimum 512GB SSD (Solid state drive)
  • Discrete graphics card with at least 4GB of dedicated VRAM
  • Integrated webcam and microphone
  • Wireless Connectivity
  • In good working condition
  • Administrator account access**

Estimated shipping is approximately 2-3 weeks.

*Please check with your academic department to confirm Operating System requirements as they may use programs which specifically require either Windows or Mac. Chromebooks and similar browser-based computers do not meet this standard.

**All personal computers will provide this by default.  If your computer is owned by your employer or other entity, you may not have an Administrator account.

Chromebooks


Chromebooks provide a low-cost computing device solution; however, these are not recommended by the University at this time.  While it is possible to install the Microsoft Office mobile apps from the Google Play Store or use the Office applications online through a web browser, these versions will not be as robust as the full desktop Office application. Google’s operating system cannot run Windows software and is limited by what is available for download in the Google Play Store. Furthermore, Respondus Lockdown Browser is known to have issues and students with Chromebooks who need to take a quiz using the Lockdown Browser would need to seek a different device to use for these quizzes.