Computer Buying Tips for Lumberjacks

Buying a computer for your time here at SFA can be confusing and challenging. This article will provide you with tips on choosing a computer that will meet your needs and not waste money.

Check With Your Academic Advisor

There may be software that is required for your major or area of study so be sure to check with your Academic Advisor to see if that is the case. If there is software required for your area make sure the computer you purchase AT LEAST meets those requirements. If there is not a software requirement for your major and you just need to run standard software such as Microsoft Office then you will be fine with a Windows or MacOS based computer. Stick to the known name brands for best results such as Dell, HP, Lenovo, Apple, ASUS, etc.

Plan on Spending $200/Year

A personal computer is almost a requirement for students these days and as such you want to make sure the computer you purchase is of acceptable quality. In order to ensure that, a good rule of thumb is to plan on spending about $200 for every year you plan on being here at SFA. If you are on the 4 year 15 to Finish plan then that would be around $800. Be sure to stay away from bargain level computers that sell for $500 or less as they often have inferior quality components, are not able to run current software and are not designed to be repaired should they break. Be sure to stay away from Chromebooks. They are a neat backup device but Chromebooks will not be able to run Microsoft Office and usually have compatibility issues with other systems in place at SFA.

Prepare A Budget

Plan on having a maximum amount of money that you are able to spend on a computer and then plan on spending all of it. The more RAM you have the better. The larger hard drive you have the better.  A  more expensive solid state hard drive is better than a less expensive spinner style hard drive. The idea by spending your entire budget is that you are "future-proofing" your computer. The more money you spend up front results in the computer not becoming unable to run new software.

Install Microsoft Office Free of Charge

Microsoft Office is the approved productivity software suite for SFA and is available free of charge to students in mySFA. One the Home Tab in mySFA just click on the "Office 365" button on the screen to access Microsoft Office 365 and the installers to download and install the software on your computer.

Call The Help Desk

If you have additional questions regarding the selection of a computer for use at SFA please contact us at the Help Desk.


Article ID: 110922
Fri 6/26/20 11:21 AM
Wed 1/18/23 1:22 PM