Computing & Information Services

Computing Information for Students

Computers in coursework

Students at Reed use computers in almost every area of the curriculum, and this will be especially true during the 2020-21 academic year. Reed’s academic plans are evolving, but for most students their coursework will require some amount of online learning. 

For the 2020-21 academic year, every student should have a laptop with a currently supported operating system, capable of running Microsoft Office, email, modern web browser, and Zoom.

For up-to-date academic information, visit:

Technology recommendations for students

A majority of the Reed community chooses to use Macintosh computers, but Windows and Linux systems will also work. The following Mac or Windows specifications should be sufficient for most students:

Minimum laptop specs:

  • Mac OS 10.14 or later
  • Windows 10 Pro, Enterprise, or Home
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD (preferred) or hard drive
  • Dual core processor
  • Webcam
  • Headphones

Recommended laptop specs:

  • Mac OS 10.14 or later
  • Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise
  • 16GB RAM
  • 256GB SSD or 512GB SSD (preferred)
  • Quad core processor
  • Webcam
  • Headphones
  • Extended warranty (including accidental damage and spill coverage)

Additional accessories may be beneficial for extensive online learning:

  • iPad with stylus
  • External keyboard
  • Mouse
  • 20” or 24” external monitor

Where to buy recommended technology

Apple computers, iPads, and accessories can be purchased through the Reed Computer Store.

  • Visit Reed’s Apple Affiliate Store to place orders and have them shipped directly to you. You can order Reed’s recommended bundles, or create a custom order.
  • Note: After August 1, we recommend that you have your order shipped to your Reed College mail stop at:
    <your name>
    Reed College MS <your mailstop number>
    3203 SE Woodstock Blvd
    Portland OR 97202-8199

For more information about purchasing through Reed visit the Reed Computer Store or email computer-purchase@reed.edu

Dell computers with Windows 10 work well on the campus network.

Make sure new Dell laptops have at least Windows 10, an i5 processor, and a 256GB SSD

Computing facilities for students

Campus computer labs, known as information resource centers (IRCs), will not be open for fall 2020 due to COVID-19 concerns. However, much of the specialized software normally provided in the IRCs will be available through our virtual lab system. More information is available on our Virtual Computer Lab page.

Printing on campus

Printers are provided for student use in residence halls and elsewhere on campus. Printing is billed automatically to student accounts at 8¢ per side for B&W, 35¢ per side for color. All students are given a $25 allotment for printing with the expection of seniors, who are given $45. If you choose to bring your own printer to campus, be aware that its wireless functionality is not compatible with the campus network. For more information please, visit our Printing at Reed page.

Smart Devices

Students are also allowed to bring smart devices such as google homes, smart lightbulbs, and amazon echos. However, there is limited support for these devices and wireless functionalities are not always compatiable with the campus network. For more information, please visit our Smart Devices page.

Where to get computer help

Computer User Services (CUS) provides all sorts of computer help to students. The CUS help desk can assist with software issues including installing and using software, printing, and using the lab computers. The help desk is open until midnight on school nights. CUS also operates an Apple-certified hardware repair shop and can repair your Mac no matter where you bought it. For Windows hardware repairs, we suggest that you work with your manufacturer. If your Windows computer is out of warranty, we can recommend a local repair shop. Reed's help desk, repair shop, and computer store are all located on the first floor of the Educational Technology Center (ETC).

More information about computing and computer support

You can find more information about computing at Reed by visiting our web sites:

If you have specific questions about what kind of computer to purchase, contact the Reed College Computer Store at computer-purchase@reed.edu or 503-777-7253.