Computer Recommendations

Computer recommendations


Following are Helena College's recommendations on computing device ownership for students. Devices include desktop, laptop, notebook and netbook computers.

Student ownership of and/or permanent access to a computing device is required at Helena College. Students benefit greatly from the ability to work and access online information and services at any time and from any place. Helena College is committed to providing access to computing resources for students on both campuses. For more information about specific considerations, please visit the Helena College website

Considerations when selecting a computing device

Helena College does not maintain a list of supported computer vendors and specifications to guide student computer purchases since such recommendations are typically out of date upon publication. 

The College is committed to platform independence, focusing support on technologies like web-based applications and wireless network services that ensure access and usability for a broad range of computers and operating systems. In most cases, any reasonably up-to-date computer running any reasonably current version of Microsoft Windows, Apple MacOS or Linux operating system will meet a student's needs.

Additional considerations

  • Students should expect to own multiple computing devices during their academic career that reflect increasingly specialized requirements of their field of study as well as general technological advances.

  • Students considering a computer purchase for advanced work in a particular field should consult with the academic department of their major field for specific recommendations prior to purchase.

  • Students should consider portability in device selection. Laptop, notebook and tablet computers allow more portability than desktop computers, but with decreasing levels of functionality. Students may find it beneficial to own a combination of computing devices to satisfy demands for both functionality and mobility.

  • General specifications of a computer should look similar to the following
    • 8+ GB RAM
    • 240+ GB SSD Hard Drive
    • 4 core CPU
    • Windows 101 Pro/Edu/Enterprise
      • Windows 11 Home has some restrictions and may not work in some cases for what the student needs in class.  Please check with your instructor.
Helena College Chat