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Technology Requirements

The College of Creative Arts and Media has special recommendations for hardware and software.

Students in most of our majors and programs may choose between the basic system requirements or a high performance system. The high performance system options will provide faster processing speeds, better graphics display and more file storage space.

Unless otherwise noted, students may use a Mac-based or PC (Windows) laptop, as long as they have the minimum specifications noted below. Chromebooks are NOT acceptable for classwork, as they do not meet the specifications listed. Visit the WVU IT Services website for general guidelines and information about discounts and software available to students on behalf of the university.

Basic Systems

  • MacBook Air or MacBook Pro installed with current macOS
    • Apple M2 or M3 Processor
    • 8GB unified memory (minimum)
    • 256GB SSD storage (minimum)
  • Windows-based machine with operating system 10 or newer
    • 8 GB RAM
    • Intel Core i5, AMD Ryzen 5 processors

High Performance Systems

  • MacBook Pro installed with current macOS
    • M3 Processor
    • 16GB unified memory (minimum)
    • 512GB SSD storage (minimum)
  • Windows-based machine with operating system 10 64-bit (or newer)
    • 32GB unified memory (minimum)
    • 14th gen Intel Core (i9 or better) or AMD Ryzen (7 or better)
    • 512 GB of hard drive space (minimum)
    • Graphics cards with 8GB RAM

Software


School of Art and Design

Hardware

  • Interior Architecture and Fashion Design and Merchandising majors should consult these specialized computer requirements
  • Students enrolled in the BFA Art and Design Digital Art and Animation and Graphic Design areas of emphasis must use the high performance MacBook system noted above.
  • Game Design and Interactive Media students may choose either MacBook or Windows-based system, but must have the high performance specs.
  • Art History and Museum Professions and Art Therapy majors may choose either a MacBook or Windows-based system; the basic requirements are sufficient for these majors.
  • All other School of Art and Design students are required to use the MacBook specs, but may choose either the basic or high performance MacBook Pro system requirements listed above.

Software

  • All majors in the School of Art and Design will need Adobe Creative Cloud (WVU student subscriptions are available at a discounted rate).
  • Sophomores, juniors and seniors in the BFA Art and Design Graphic Design area of emphasis will need the Adobe Font Folio 11 (Education Essentials Student and Teacher Edition)

Reed School of Media and Communications

Hardware

All students in the Reed School of Media and Communications are required to have their own laptops for use in classes and projects. Students may use a Mac-based or PC (Windows) laptop, as long as they have the minimum specifications noted above.

Software

Many classes in the Reed School use Adobe Creative Cloud (WVU student subscriptions are available at a discounted rate).


School of Music

Hardware

  • Students in Music Composition majors, and those taking electronic media or music technology courses must choose one of the high performance options (either Mac or Windows-based are acceptable).
  • All other students in the School of Music may choose from any of the hardware options mentioned above.

Software

  • All music students need fonts that include music symbols, such as Maestro Times, Opus, or CSTwo/CSThree.
  • Music Notation (MuseScore, Notion, Finale, Sibelius, or Dorico acceptable) is recommended for music students and required for all composition students.
  • Music students need a recording program with the ability to adequately record lessons, practice sessions, student teaching practice sessions, etc.
  • Students in music recording courses will need ProTools (purchase or monthly subscription).

Additional Components:

A full-spectrum pair of headphones (on-ear or over-the-ear) is required for School of Music students, due to the nature of course assignments.


School of Theatre and Dance

Hardware

  • Students in the Theatre Design and Technology majors must choose one of the high performance options (either Mac or Windows-based are acceptable).
  • All other Theatre and Dance students may choose from any of the hardware options mentioned above.

Software

Theatre Design and Technology students will need:

  • Adobe Creative Cloud (WVU student subscription available at a discounted rate).
  • Quicktime
  • Sophomores through seniors will need Sketchup and Vectorworks/AutoCAD (Student version available for free. Confirm with CAD instructor for version needed.)