The IT department's role in the legal education process is primarily one of support. Technology is a tool which when applied to the process of education should enhance and facilitate the endeavor. Our job in IT is to support the School of Law community with regard to technology in whatever form it may arise.
An online system that allows faculty, staff, and students to submit technology work requests is in the initial stages in production. Requests for assistance can currently be submitted to help.uark.edu which will dispatch an e-mail to the appropriate University IT staff.
Recommended Computers For Law Students
Besides taking notes, creating documents and accessing digitized legal resources one of the most important functions your laptop will serve during your law school career will be to take exams. Currently we utilize ExamSoft’s Examplify software. Before purchasing a laptop please check the minimum requirements for use with Examplify. PLEASE NOTE we do not currently support the use of iPads or other tablets for examinations.
- Intel – Windows 11 compatible 10th generation Core mobile processor or better
- AMD - Windows 11 compatible Ryzen 5 Zen+ or Zen 2 processor or better
While you may purchase a laptop with Intel’s 10th generation i3 mobile processor, popular on many new PC based low end laptops, I would spend the extra money for the i5 which will serve you better over your law school career. Similarly, with AMD based CPU’s I would recommend a recent generation Ryzen 5 processor. I would not invest in an older Core 2 Duo, 7th or lower generation Intel based iCore, Athlon, A12, A10, A8, A6, A4 , Phenom or Zen based laptop. PLEASE NOTE that the exam software that we currently use does not support devices that utilize ARM based processors such as a few of the new Surface Pros that Microsoft offers.
- 8 GB or more
Regardless of your processor speed, the easiest way to enhance the performance of your computer is to equip it with copious amounts of RAM. 8 GB is the minimum recommended for use with either Windows 10/11 or macOS.
- 250 GB or more
You may wish to purchase a larger drive if you store music, video, and/or photos on your computer. If you are purchasing a new computer seriously consider purchasing a solid state drive (SSD) over a standard hard drive (HDD) as you will see significant performance increases.
Support for HD graphic output is recommended. Onboard and discrete video card capabilities are wide and varied. If you hope to utilize your laptop for in-class presentations, make sure that there is an external video output and, if possible, a digital output such as DVI, HDMI (preferred) or even Display Port. Many laptops are moving away from supporting the varied input and output ports in favor of USB-C ports which can, with the proper adapter, support video output amongst others. Most new Apple Mac laptops fall into this category. Again HDMI is preferred.
- Active/TFT LCD or OLED - Screen resolution should be at least 1280 x 768.
The size of your display is a personal choice. If possible avoid displays with a highly reflective finish.
There are few areas within the law school that are without wireless coverage. The 802.11b, g, n and ac standards are supported currently.
- Windows 10 (Alternate versions of Windows 10 and Windows 11, such as Windows RT and Windows 10 and 11 S, are NOT supported at this time.
- macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or better
Please note that Chromebooks and certain low cost netbooks do not meet the minimum specifications currently needed to take exams or run Office 365 apps. Invest in the latest operating system and software. This will prolong your system’s viability and give you as hassle free a computing experience as possible.
Word Processing Software
Microsoft Word as part of the Office 365 suite (See Below)
A 3 or 4 year warranty will cover your laptop from manufacturer’s defects for the duration of your legal studies and may also cover it as you study for and take your state’s bar examination.
Protect your investment. Don’t throw your new laptop in your backpack with all of your books as laptops are constructed from materials that are not rigid enough to survive the weight and stress of being crammed in among your books.
As a student of the University of Arkansas you will be granted use of the Office 365 suite for the duration of your scholarly endeavor.
Wireless printing allows students to print to designated printers directly from their laptops within the walls of School of Law. Note: not all file types are supported. Only PDF, Word, Excel and PowerPoint files are currently permitted. Follow the instructions located here to print from the web at http://printsmart.uark.edu.