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Laptop requirements for Westphal students

Last Updated: June 22nd, 2022

  Notes:

  • This laptop guide is for students enrolled in Westphal College. For other colleges, see the Drexel University Information Technology Computer Buying Guide.
  • Our laptop requirements have been updated for Academic Year 2022-2023.
  • Most manufacturers are currently experiencing longer than usual lead times due to component shortages.

We know there are a lot of great options when it comes to purchasing a new laptop and narrowing it down can be overwhelming. We're here to help you choose a laptop with the right technology to empower your productivity, fuel your creativity, and bring your ideas to life.

Since 1983, Drexel University policy has required each student to have access to a personal computer. Our laptop requirements build on the University's policy and recommendations to provide personalized guidance for new design, media, creative enterprise management, and performing arts students. The requirements on this page are thoughtfully developed to help guide your purchase and find the right laptop that fits your needs.

Choose the device that's right for you

We've partnered with our faculty to determine the academic and industry standards to support your creative process and help you achieve success in your academic program.

Laptop requirements and software availability vary, so it's important to choose a laptop with the right capabilities for your area of study—whether you're curating an exhibit, editing a film, or rendering a virtual world, our device specifications make it easy to find the best laptop that will meet your needs.

Animation & Visual Effects

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or AMD equivalent Intel Core i7 Quad-core or greater or AMD equivalent
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 1TB SSD or larger
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 or greater
Camera 720p HD webcam 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Animation & Visual Effects students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Architecture

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core Intel Core i7 6-core or greater
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Dedicated with 4GB graphics memory Dedicated with 6GB graphics memory or higher
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Architecture students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Art History

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Art History students. Art History students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Arts Administration & Museum Leadership

Our online Arts Administration & Museum Leadership program also recommends a headset with microphone.

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Arts Administration & Museum Leadership students. Arts Administration & Museum Leadership students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Dance and Performing Arts

Minimum Requirement
Device type Apple laptop
Processor Apple M1 or M2 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Apple M1 or M2 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

Dance and Performing Arts students receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple

Design & Merchandising

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Design & Merchandising students. Design & Merchandising students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Design Research

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 32GB or higher
Storage 1TB SSD or larger
Graphics Dedicated with 6GB graphics memory or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Design Research students. Design Research students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Digital Media (MS, PhD)

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or AMD equivalent Intel Core i7 Quad-core or greater or AMD equivalent
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 1TB SSD or larger
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 or greater
Camera 720p HD webcam 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Digital Media (MS) students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Entertainment & Arts Management

Students in the Entertainment & Arts Management program choose an area of concentration no later than the end of spring term in your first academic year. If you have a laptop, we advise that you wait to purchase a new laptop until you've selected your concentration. If you do not have a laptop, we suggest purchasing a low cost, entry-level laptop, and to purchase a laptop that meets your concentration’s minimum requirements after you’ve selected your concentration. If you switch concentrations, you may need to purchase a different laptop that meets the minimum requirements of your new concentration.

Cinema and Television

Students choosing the concentration in Cinema and Television should purchase a laptop that meets or exceeds the requirements for our Film & Television program.

Laptop requirements for Film & Television

Dance, Performing Arts, or Theatre

Students choosing a concentration in Dance, Performing Arts, or Theatre should purchase a laptop that meets or exceeds the requirements for our Dance and Performing Arts programs.

Laptop requirements for Dance and Performing Arts

Digital Media

Students choosing the concentration in Digital Media should purchase a laptop that meets or exceeds the requirements for our User Experience & Interaction Design program.

Laptop requirements for User Experience & Interaction Design

Sports Entertainment

Students choosing the concentration in Sports Entertainment should purchase a laptop that meets or exceeds the requirements for students enrolled in the LeBow College of Business.

Laptop requirements for LeBow College of Business students

Visual Arts Management

Students choosing the concentration in Visual Arts Management should purchase a laptop that meets or exceeds the requirements for our Art History program.

Laptop requirements for Art History

Fashion Design and Fashion Design (MS)

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or greater
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics NVIDIA with 4GB graphics memory
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Fashion Design and Fashion Design (MS) students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Film & Television

Our Film & Television program recommends a Mac laptop, but the use of a Windows laptop that meets or exceeds our requirements is acceptable and compatible with your industry standard software.

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or Apple M1 chip Intel Core i7 6-core or greater or Apple M1 or M2 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip Dedicated with 4GB graphics memory or higher or Apple M1 chip
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Operating system PC: Windows 10 Pro PC: Windows 10 Pro
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

Film & Television students receive educational discounts from Apple, Dell, and Lenovo.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Game Design & Production

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or AMD equivalent Intel Core i7 Quad-core or greater or AMD equivalent
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 1TB SSD or larger
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 or greater
Camera 720p HD webcam 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Game Design & Production students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Graphic Design

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple 16-inch MacBook Pro laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 6-core or greater
Memory (RAM) 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics AMD Radeon Pro with 4GB graphics memory or higher
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

Graphic Design students receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple

Interior Architecture & Design

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core Intel Core i7 6-core or greater
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Dedicated with 4GB graphics memory Dedicated with 6GB graphics memory or higher
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Display Anti-glare or matte display (recommended)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Interior Architecture & Design students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Interior Design

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core Intel Core i7 6-core or greater
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Dedicated with 4GB graphics memory Dedicated with 6GB graphics memory or higher
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Interior Design students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Music Industry

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple 16-inch MacBook Pro laptop
Processor Apple M1 or M2 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Apple M1 or M2 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

Music Industry students receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple

Photography

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop
Processor Apple M1 or M2 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

Photography students receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple

Product Design

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Dedicated with 4GB graphics memory or higher
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Product Design students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Retail & Merchandising

Our online Retail & Merchandising program also recommends a headset with microphone.

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Retail & Merchandising students. Retail & Merchandising students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Screenwriting & Playwriting

Our Screenwriting & Playwriting program recommends a Mac laptop, but the use of a Windows laptop that meets or exceeds our requirements is acceptable and compatible with your industry standard software.

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or Apple M1 chip Intel Core i7 6-core or greater or Apple M1 or M2 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip Dedicated with 4GB graphics memory or higher or Apple M1 chip
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Operating system PC: Windows 10 Pro PC: Windows 10 Pro
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

Screenwriting & Playwriting students receive educational discounts from Apple, Dell, and Lenovo.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Television & Media Management

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Television & Media Management students. Television & Media Management students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Urban Strategy

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Integrated Intel graphics or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Urban Strategy students. Urban Strategy students also receive educational discounts from Apple.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

User Experience & Interaction Design

Minimum Requirement
Device type  Apple laptop or  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i5 Quad-core or greater or Apple M1 chip
Memory (RAM) 16GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD or larger
Graphics Dedicated with 2GB graphics memory or higher or Apple M1 chip
Camera 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

User Experience & Interaction Design students receive educational discounts from Apple, Dell, and Lenovo.

Shop Apple Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Virtual Reality & Immersive Media

Minimum Requirement Recommended
Device type  Windows laptop  Windows laptop
Processor Intel Core i7 Quad-core or AMD equivalent Intel Core i7 Quad-core or greater or AMD equivalent
Memory (RAM) 16GB 32GB or higher
Storage 512GB SSD 1TB SSD or larger
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 or greater
Camera 720p HD webcam 720p HD webcam
Wireless Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band) Wi-Fi 802.11 ac/a/n (dual-band)
Warranty & service 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection 3-year or 4-year extended support Accidental damage protection

Save with our valued partners

We've partnered with Dell and Lenovo to offer preconfigured laptops with exclusive discounts for Virtual Reality & Immersive Media students.

Shop Dell Shop Lenovo

Undeclared Design & Media

Students in the Undeclared Design & Media program choose a major no later than the end of spring term in your first academic year. If you have a laptop, we advise that you wait to purchase a new laptop until you've chosen your major. If you do not have a laptop, we suggest purchasing a low cost, entry-level laptop, and to purchase a laptop that meets your major’s minimum requirements after you’ve selected your major. If you switch majors, you may need to purchase a different laptop that meets the minimum requirements of your new major.

Keep your device up and running

You may have the option to purchase extended protection and accidental damage coverage for your device. We recommend you make sure you're covered if something goes wrong.

Work worry-free and minimize out-of-pocket repair costs with an extended warranty for hardware coverage. Get covered for things like spills, drops, and cracked screens with accidental damage protection.

Keep your files safe

Losing data because of malware or a computer problem is discouraging and can set back your academic progress. You might lose months of writing, planning, creating, designing, and innovating. However, a little prevention can go a long way to avoiding this ordeal.

To help save you lots of time and aggravation, we recommend that you use a secure cloud service, such as Backblaze or Carbonite, to back up your data. Keep your files safe from malware, human error, theft, and hardware failure—if something happens to your device, you don't have to worry about losing your files.

We recommend these accessories

Make the most of your device with these recommended accessories.

  • USB-C multiport adapter
  • Headset with microphone
  • Bag or sleeve
  • Additional power supply

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