Bringing A Computer to Hampshire

The College strongly encourages you to bring a computer to campus. Laptops are recommended for flexibility and convenience, and can be used in your residence and around campus.

Computer Purchasing

As a Hampshire student, you can purchase computers and software at an academic discount. Log in with your Hampshire username and password and follow the Dell or Apple websites links for educational personal purchases. While we don't recommend any particular models, we do recommend:

  • 3-year extended warranty
  • Laptop case and lock
  • External hard drive or another method for back-up

For questions about computer purchases, don't hesitate to get in touch with Rae Ann Wentworth-Cadieux.

Planning to Work in Video, Sound, Animation, Digital Photography or Design?

Most media classes at Hampshire run on Macintosh computers. You can use a PC, but you will probably experience some problems moving back and forth. Another thing to consider is that, in our experience, a student's first year is usually not the best time to purchase a high-end computer for media work. Technology and our own desires change too fast to make the machine you purchase now truly useful to you for your Division III work later. It may make more sense to use something basic your first year and save your money for later. We do recommend you have your own external firewire (not USB) hard drive, but that, too, can wait until during your first semester. Read more about the Jerome Liebling Center equipment and contact John Bruner with any questions. And again, this is only applicable to students planning to work in film, video, etc.


The Student Diagnostic Center provides support for student computer systems. Support includes assisting with troubleshooting and resolving software or hardware related problems and providing basic instruction on use.

Be sure to bring your original operating system and software with you if it came separately. If you encounter a problem and we need to help you reinstall your system, we'll need the legal copies to do so.

Anti-Virus Software

The College requires that you have up-to-date anti-virus software installed on your Windows based computer. We recommend Microsoft Security Essentials for Windows. We do not require anti-virus on a Mac, but recommend ClamAV for those who want to have anti-virus software on their Macs.