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Buying a Computer

Should I bring a computer to school?

New students are not required to bring a computer to college, but K-State encourages them to do so.  For students without a computer, K-State provides several computing labs on campus, as well as the library. Most labs and the library are open long hours on weekdays, and the library is open on weekends. 

Students who do bring a computer will find it easier to do coursework, research, and communicate with instructors and other students.  K-State Polytechnic's high-speed campus data network allows access from student-owned devices in various locations, including residence-hall rooms, off-campus, and numerous locations on campus with wireless coverage.

Do I need to buy a new computer?

In many cases a computer that is a couple of years old or newer will still be able to handle the basic office suite software that is needed for most courses. More advanced applications will likely be required as you get into a major field of study. If you are planning on buying a computer, Information Technology maintains a list of general computer purchase recommendations. Please consult your department and/or advisor before making a purchase decision to ensure that your computer will work well for your specific field of study,

What software will I need?

K-State requires that computers connected to the University network use K-State's antivirus software (TrendMicro), which is provided free to all students.  Students are also responsible for keeping their operating system up-to-date on current security patches.

A good office desktop suite that includes word processing, presentation, database, and spreadsheet applications is recommended for all students. K-State provides Office365 ProPlus for free to all K-Staters;  It can be installed on up to five PCs or Macs, and on up to five mobile devices (see links below).  LibreOffice is another good open-source alternative that is available for free. 

Tools to read and annotate PDFs such as Adobe Acrobat Reader are also recommended.

Other software can be added as needed and depends on the requirements of the courses you enroll in.  Please consult your department and/or advisor for specific software recommendations.

If you have questions

Contact the Information Systems Dept., 184 Technology Center, (785) 826-2666.