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Computer Requirements

Recognizing the important role that technology plays in today’s world, St. Norbert College requires all incoming students to bring a laptop computer. The use of laptops and other educational technologies at St. Norbert will help enrich your learning experience, promote greater communication and collaboration, and better prepare you to use digital technologies in the workplace.

The only requirement is that students must bring a laptop. There is no further requirement as to the make, model, or specs. That said, whether you choose to bring an existing laptop or purchase a new one, these are our recommended specifications for a laptop computer that will satisfy the needs for most academic programs at St. Norbert College for four years.

Hardware Specification Recommendations

We recommend that St. Norbert students bring a laptop that meets these minimum specs:

Windows MacOS
Operating System Windows 11 macOS 14
Processor Type Core i5 or i7 processor Apple M2
Memory 16 GB RAM
Hard Drive 250 GB SSD
Camera integrated webcam
Warranty 3 year (or greater) parts and labor strongly recommended
Onsite support recommended, if available

Some majors require the use and installation of specialized software (i.e. SPSS, VirtualBox, etc), in which case your laptop must have at least the minimum specs provided above. Be sure to check with your adviser for specific recommendations.

Chromebooks, Tablets, and Smartphones

Generally speaking, Chromebooks, tablets, and smartphones are not suitable as a primary computing device for four years of college. However, since these devices work well for basic college-related communication and collaboration, they can be used as a supplement to a primary device.

Special Program Recommendations

Two academic programs have additional recommendations, as outlined here.

  • Art: Art majors should have a laptop that meets the recommended hardware specifications above. Apple MacBook is recommended.
  • Computer Science: Upper class (juniors, seniors) CS majors should have a laptop that meets the recommended hardware specifications. Windows laptop is recommended.


We offer a number of technology recommendations to assist in making your purchase. These recommendations include not only laptops, but software, adapters, accessories, etc.

Financial Aid

St. Norbert College allows a one-time reasonable allowance for the purchase of a laptop computer to be added to a student's Cost of Attendance (COA) calculation, if desired. A copy of an estimate or receipt of purchase is necessary. By increasing the COA, you may become eligible for additional loan money in the form of federal direct loans, federal PLUS loans or private educational loans. Please contact the Financial Aid office for more information.


For questions about laptop recommendations for specific academic programs, please contact your adviser or a faculty member in the area of study.

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