System requirements

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Once you are a University of Hertfordshire student, you will be able to access technical support for standard hardware and software.

System requirements

You need access a suitable computer and a good reliable Internet connection to study online.

Most modern PCs and Macs (less than five years old) should be fine. As a guide, you need a minimum of:

Minimum system requirements
ComponentRequirementEstimated costs (UK prices 2016)
Desktop or laptop computer

Operating system:

  • Windows 7 or later
  • Mac OS X 10.7 Lion or later


  • 800 MHz or faster processor *
  • 20GB free disc space *
  • 2GB RAM *
  • CD / DVD drive

*requirements could vary depending on software needs

Some of our courses require the use of Microsoft Software. Mac users will need to use BootCamp with Windows in order to use these. Therefore, students must ensure their Mac has an Intel processor and that it can run BootCamp. For more information please see 'Windows on a Mac'.

Starts at £250
Display1024 x 768 minimum Starts at £50

Headset with microphone recommended
Built-in speakers and microphone if using a laptop

Starts at £15

A web cam with a minimum  640x480 video pixel resolution (web cams built into laptops or monitors are acceptable)

Starts at £5
E-mail AccountRequired - you will be asked to provide an email address upon application£0
Broadband Internet Connection2mbps is the minimum required to experience a variety of internet services at a reasonable level of qualityStarts at £10/month
Web browser


  • Google Chrome
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Safari (Mac)

Various Adobe plugins (Connect, Flash, Reader) may be required.

Your tutor will advise on any additional software you will need.


Microsoft Office 365, includes Word, Excel, and PowerPoint (Provided by the university).

Computer Science Students will have access to the Microsoft Imagine portal through which a range of operating systems and developer tools can be downloaded.

You may be asked to download and use freeware / trail applications depending on your programme of study.

Provided by the University at no cost to students / Free
Additional Requirements for Creative Arts Programmes
HardwareA scanner or digital camera, in order to digitise your handmade workStarts as £50
Video EditingBasic video editing software, such as Windows Movie Maker or iMovieFree with most operating systems
Other SoftwareYou will also need whatever software you wish to use to produce your work. This will differ depending on the kind of work you hope to produce during your studies. Almost all students find that they need Adobe Photoshop. Illustration students hoping to produce vector-based work will also need either Adobe Illustrator or Corel Draw. Graphic Designers will likely require Adobe InDesign.

Adobe offers a variety of Creative Cloud packages, with discounts for students.

Start at £15.49 a month.

For more information please visit the Creative Cloud pricing website.

Office 365 for everyone

All full-time and part-time students will have a Microsoft Office 365 account for the duration of their time at the University.

Office 365 is a powerful suite of tools which offers familiar applications like Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, plus others which may be less familiar to you like Skype for Business (also known as Lync) for online meetings, and OneDrive for storing and sharing documents.

Office 365 gives you:

  • Full, installed Office applications Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Publisher, and OneNote on up to 5 PCs or Macs.
  • Office on tablets and phones for the Office experience on up to 5 tablets and 5 phones.
  • Online versions of Office including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • File storage and sharing with 1 TB storage.

What IT skills are required?

Basic IT skills are a requirement for anyone wishing to study online. For example, you will need to be confident using an internet browser, communicating via email and using Microsoft  Office tools (e.g. Word, Excel) or equivalent. An ability to learn and adapt to new technologies is also important, for example, you may be asked to participate in a virtual classroom session, contribute to a discussion forum or complete an online assessment/test (depending on your programme of study).