Texas Tech University

Computer & Software Requirements

Minimum Laptop Requirements

The laptop should meet or exceed the following specifications.

  • Processor | Current generation Intel® Core™ i7 or i9 quad-core processor, 2.4Ghz or greater
  • Memory | 16GB RAM
  • Storage | 512GB SSD (Solid State Disk)
  • Display | 15 inch or larger, 1920x1080 or higher resolution
  • Graphics | Quadro M1200, Geforce GTX 470, AMD Radeon R9 M370X, AMD Radeon Pro 555X
  • Networking | Wireless 802.11N

Other Recommendations

  • Connectivity | HDMI connection (built in or via adapter)
  • Warranty | 3 years or greater
  • Backup | external disk or cloud storage
  • Apple Computer | non-M1 processor (SEE NOTE)
Students working on physical models and projects.

Apple Computers

Some 15-inch MacBook Pro laptops exceed the specifications for the minimum computer requirement, depending on the model chosen. A small number of software programs required for use in some courses are only available for Microsoft Windows. To use this software, Windows will have to be purchased separately and installed on the laptop. Students are responsible for obtaining, installing, and maintaining software on their computers.

Purchase Windows Home Edition online from Microsoft.

Read instructions for installing Windows using Apple Bootcamp Assistant.

At this time some of the software used in the architecture program is not fully compatible with the Apple M1 processor. The Intel processor is recommended when purchasing an Apple computer.

Overhead views of floor plans.

Helpful Tips

  • Visit notebookcheck.net to compare the performance of all components of the computer (such as the video card or CPU) being considered for purchase with those in the specification.
  • Some laptops do not allow after-market upgrades of memory, so it is necessary to buy a computer model which will perform well into the future as software tends to require more memory with newer versions.
  • Some laptop manufacturers split storage into a small initial partition and a larger secondary partition. A laptop must have a 512GB initial partition (the C: drive on Windows or boot drive on Mac OSX) to meet the computer requirements.
  • Laptops do not allow the addition of new video hardware. For the laptop to be capable of running the 3D software applications used in our program, it is important to choose a video card that meets or exceeds the minimum specifications. No laptops with only an Intel video card meet these requirements, though some laptops contain a power-saving Intel card and a performance graphics card. All that is required is that one of the installed graphics cards meets the computer requirements.
Size chart for a skyscraper.

Financial Aid Application for Purchasing a Laptop

Word | PDF

Discounted Laptops for TTU College of Architecture Students

Apple Education Store with discounts for students

Dell University Program for the College of Architecture

Creation Engine academic software discounts for students.

Coil shape within a cubed structure planning.

Software Available to Students for Free or Low Cost

Site-licensed software

AutoDesk Education Community

Adobe Creative cloud discounts for students

Microsoft Office downloads for students (enter your TTU email address as the username)

College of Architecture White Card

Assistance with Computer Problems

For computer support, visit the TTU IT help website or call 742-4357.

Limited support is available from the Architecture IT staff. Email architecture.it@ttu.edu for assistance.

Side view of a building with abstract sculptures.