A computer is an essential tool for PAUL/UNH students. Based on recent surveys, 100% of PAUL Freshmen own a computer. We anticipate that you, too, will arrive on campus in the fall with a computer. If you have not yet purchased a computer, we have a several recommendations.
We believe that there are significant advantages to laptops, compared with desktops. Based on the same survey noted above, 95% of freshmen own a laptop computer. Laptops provide portability and thus, they can be used in dorm rooms, apartments, and other places on campus, such as the library and Memorial Union Building (MUB). Laptops enable students to work in groups more easily, and laptops can be used in appropriate classrooms. Classrooms in McConnell Hall have hard-wired access and/or wireless access to the UNH network.
- We recommend a Windows-based computer (Windows 7) to ensure maximum compatibility with PAUL applications and course requirements. If you do choose an Apple computer, be aware of the tradeoffs; specifically, there is course-specific software for certain courses that runs only on Windows computers.
- Microsoft Office Professional (the version containing the programs Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Access). We recommend Microsoft Office 2007 or 2010 Professional. It is important to do a complete installation of these packages and to bring with you the actual installation CD for Office; some courses use add-ins that do not get installed with a default installation. The UNH Computer Store (http://www.computerstore.unh.edu/) has very good educational pricing for Microsoft Office Professional. Note that the “Student & Teacher” (or similarly named) edition does not include Microsoft Access (the database program); Access is used heavily in some courses.
- With a laptop, be sure to get both Ethernet (wired) and wireless networking capability. All dorms are equipped with Ethernet (wired) capability. The Memorial Union Building and parts of the Library currently have wireless capability. Paul College (where most PAUL classes are held) has full wired access, and all classrooms have wireless capability.
- You can, of course, purchase a computer from many places. However, we are working with the UNH Computer Store to provide laptops configured to meet our specifications. Please check this PAUL web site after June 1 for information (http://paulcollege.unh.edu). We expect the pricing on these laptops will be very competitive, especially after taking into account the enhanced warranty and other post-purchase services. Packages will be available beginning around June 1. If you are considering buying elsewhere, be sure that you follow the minimum specifications in the list above. To get an accurate and comparable price, be sure you include all recommended software and hardware. We also suggest an extended warranty for a laptop computer.
More information about the vendors and the computer bundles is available here.