Laptops: NUI Galway School of Computer Science requires all students to have exclusive use of a laptop for use in lectures and labs, for home use of online materials and for participation in online sessions.

Guidance on laptop selection

The School of Computer Science offer some basic guidance when choosing the correct laptop to help find the balance between our requirements and your budget. Laptops used for Computer Science subjects require a higher spec than casual laptop use however that does not necessarily mean the most expensive models. For operating systems, Windows, Mac, and Linux will all meet the requirements of the course however please note that Apple and Android tablets, Chromebooks, and similar devices will not meet the minimum requirement. 

Hardware

                    Minimum            Recommended

CPU           Dual-core            Quad-core

RAM          8GB                     16GB

Disk           256GB                 512GB SSD

For health and safety reasons, prolonged use of a laptop without an external display, keyboard and mouse should be avoided.  

An external mouse and keyboard are required. A webcam and microphone are required (built-in ones are sufficient). 

A USB-C connector which supports DisplayPort over USB-C and Power Delivery is recommended, in order to dock the laptop with the new docking stations available in someof our labs, which offer charging, an external display, and a high-quality wired network connection (For referece, here is a link to the Dell Docking Station WD19: https://www.dell.com/support/article/en-ie/sln316828/how-to-use-and-troubleshoot-dell-docking-station-wd19?lang=en). Note that not all laptop USB-C ports support such docking. 

Software

Most software used in our programmes is free and open-source. Other necessary software such as Microsoft Office and VMWare is provided by NUI Galway at no cost to registered students. 

Price Discounts

Many manufacturers and suppliers offer discounts to students and it worth asking prior to purchase. The Higher Education Authority offer links to obtain some discounts: https://www.heanet.ie/store , some of which may require your NUI Galway account info.  

As part of the package of COVID supports for higher and further education institutions, the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science has allocated funding to support disadvantaged students in the higher education sector in accessing ICT devices. Please follow this link for details on the scheme

Any student who does not qualify for the above scheme and cannot afford a suitable laptop is welcome to contact us confidentially at ComputerScience@nuigalway.ie, as we will have a small number of laptops in the School available for long term loan. 

*All prices based on research 3rd September 2020

Examples of laptops meeting recommended requirements 

€980 : https://www.lenovo.com/ie/en/laptops/thinkpad/thinkbook-series/Lenovo-ThinkBook-13s-IML/p/XXTBXTM1335

€1900 https://www.apple.com/ie-edu/shop/buy-mac/macbook-pro/13-inch-space-grey-1.4ghz-quad-core-processor-with-turbo-boost-up-to-3.9ghz-256gb

Examples meeting minimum requirements (no DisplayPort over USB-C and Power Delivery)

€310 (when configured with no Windows) https://www.lenovo.com/ie/en/laptops/lenovo/v-series/Lenovo-V15-AMD/p/88LG80V8034

€450 https://www.asus.com/ie/Laptops/ASUS-Laptop-15-M509BA

Examples meeting minimum requirements (with DisplayPort over USB-C and Power Delivery)

€700 https://www.dell.com/en-ie/work/shop/laptops/latitude-3410/spd/latitude-14-3410-laptop/s002l341014ukie?view=configurations

€1150 https://www.apple.com/ie-edu/shop/buy-mac/macbook-air/space-grey-1.1ghz-dual-core-core-i3-processor-with-turbo-boost-up-to-3.2ghz-256gb

Further recommended impartial advice

Enhancing Digital Teaching & Learning Project:  https://edtl.blog/for-students/buyers-guide/