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Computer Requirements

Minimum Requirements for All Students

The following are required for all students (on-location and online):

Operating Systems

  • PC running Windows 7, or newer
  • Mac running OS X 10.6 or newer
  • Linux - chromeOS

Computer Speed and Processor

  • Use a computer 5 years old or newer when possible
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 2GHz processor

Additional Hardware and Software

  • Computer speakers or headphones
  • Printer

Browser Requirements

You are using an internet browser to look at this page, and you will use a browser to interact with Canvas, Google Apps, TA Toolbox or any other online service. These are some common browsers:

  • Firefox — Recommended browser (Download Firefox)
  • Google Chrome — Alternate browser (Download Chrome)
  • Internet Explorer (9 or above) — Alternate browser (already installed on all Windows computers)
  • Safari (6 or above, Mac only)

If you experience problems with any online service, please log out then log in with a different browser.

Browser plug-ins

In order to view some of the multimedia components of some classes, you will need to make sure you have Adobe Flash Player, a PDF reader, and Java installed. These are common plug-ins for most browsers, so you probably already have them installed. Here's how to check:

Word Processing

You will need a word processing program and some classes use Microsoft PowerPoint. You can use Microsoft Office (including Word, PowerPoint, and Excel), which is not free. An alternative would be to use Open Office, which is free and can be downloaded at Open Office.

Another alternative would be to keep your files in Google Documents. If you have a Google account, log in to Google Docs by clicking "Documents" at the top of your email page. Google Docs is free and can read Word, PowerPoint, and Excel files.

Mac users may have Pages. If you use Pages be sure to save your files as word documents. You can find out how, along with other resources in the Pages for Mac User Guide.

Please note: Open Office, Google Documents and Pages may only be used for coursework if files are saved and submitted as Word documents AND proper formatting is either retained or restored as required by your instructor. This is especially important if you are using mobile device technology.

Backups

If you are enrolled in a Torrey Academy course, you are required to maintain regular backups of all your work. This prevents you from losing a large amount of work.

You can purchase a portable hard drive to regularly backup your entire computer. We recommend a Western Digital Portable Drive. These drives come with automated backup software, or you can use Windows Backup which is built in to Windows 7 or Time Machine on a Macintosh. You can get a 1 Terabyte drive for under $125.

Another option is to subscribe to an online backup service. Here are a couple to try:

Internet Speed

  • High Speed Internet like DSL, FiOS, or cable internet connection

Skills

  • Basic word processing and typing skills

Please note: Computers with Parent Control Software installed may not be able to access all features of Canvas such as online conferencing. Fulfilling the above requirements does not guarantee that your computer will be able to smoothly run all the required programs.


Additional Requirements for Online Class Students

The following specifications are required, above and beyond the requirements listed above, for all students participating in online classes:

Hardware and Software

  • A unique computer for each student taking online classes (Two siblings may not share a computer for the same class)
  • Computer compatible microphone and headphone (not computer speakers) OR Headset with built-in microphone. We recommend Logitech's H360 USB Headset.
  • Built-In Camera or WebCam add on (for TA Courses Only). We recommend Logitech C270 HD Webcam.

Please note: Computers with Parent Control Software installed may not be able to access all features of Canvas such as online conferencing. Fulfilling the above requirements does not guarantee that your computer will be able to smoothly run all the required programs.