Student Laptops

10Civil and Architectural Engineering and Construction Management

Minimum Laptop Specifications 2017 - 2018

 The following laptop configuration was developed by the Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering and Construction Management.  These are recommended minimum configurations.  Students may also want to consider a 1TB or larger USB external hard drive for backing up their computer system.

  • Current Generation Intel® Core™ i7 Processor or higher (i7-7700 or higher, non U series processors)
  • 16GB RAM or higher
  • HDMI port and cable for external monitor/projector
  • 1TB hard drive minimum, SSD+HDD recommended
  • DVD±RW (internal or external)
  • Audio (required), webcam and mic (recommended)
  • Gigabit Ethernet (internal or external) recommended

Wireless 802.11g/n (minimum), 802.11 ac dual band (recommended)

Dedicated WORKSTATION class video card required (nVidia Quadro or AMD FirePro/Pro)

  • Civil Engineering/Construction Management - nVidia Quadro M1200M workstation video card or higher
  • Architectural Engineering - nVidia Quadro M2200M workstation video card or higher

A laptop configuration meeting the above specifications is available from Dell with student discounts included at The base configuration satisfies the civil engineering/construction management specifications. Architectural Engineers will need to customize the configuration by selecting the "Nvidia Quadro M2200M w/4GB GDDR5" option under "Video Card" on the components (first) tab.

Students with laptops that do not meet these minimum requirements will not be prohibited from enrolling in courses, but their ability to participate in classroom activities and to complete assignments may be severely hampered.  Workstation class video cards are strongly recommended due to engineering software being designed to support or require workstation video card acceleration. Support for students with laptops that do not meet these requirements will not be provided.

As an additional consideration, students are expected to use their laptops over the course of several years. Due to the nature of how laptops are used, an extended warranty may be a worthwhile option to consider. 

Macintosh Laptops

The College of Engineering and Applied Science Office of College Computing does not officially support Mac OS X. If a student choses to purchase an Apple laptop, it should meet the similar specifications listed above or “MacBook and MacBook Pro (Apple) configurations 4 or 5” as published by the College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning (DAAP), link below. The relevant Macintosh specifications are on the third page of the linked PDF file, below. Additionally, they should be able to run Apple Bootcamp with Windows 10 Professional 64-bit for software that may require a Windows platform, as detailed in the second link, below.  A Thunderbolt 3 to HDMI adapter will also likely be needed.