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Pepperdine | Seaver College

Technology Requirement

Frequently Asked Questions

About the Requirement

To Whom Does This Requirement Apply?

This requirement applies to all incoming Business majors entering under the 2003/2004 Seaver College catalog or later, including first-year and transfer students. It applies to all major programs within the Division: Accounting, Business Administration, and International Business. Contract majors who are required to take AC 314, BA 212, BA 216, or BA 452 fall under this requirement.  All other contract majors should consult with the Business Administration Division.

The requirement does not apply to Business students who entered Seaver College under the 2002/2003 catalog or earlier, but those students are strongly recommended to purchase a qualifying Windows-based wireless notebook computer.

Although this requirement technically doesn't apply to non-Business majors, all students who pursue a minor, emphasis, or concentration in Business must pay close attention to any business course requirements. A number of business courses require students to bring a Windows-based wireless laptop to each class session. Please consult with the appropriate business professor to identify any course technology requirements.

Catalog Year Notebook Computer Requirement?
2003/2004 and after Yes, Required
2002/2003 and before No, but Strongly Recommended

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Why Adopt a Wireless Notebook Requirement?

The Business Administration Division is firmly committed to building technology across its curriculum. Technology plays a vital role in the modern business world, from research to presentation, reporting to decision making. To prepare students for their future professions, the Business Division has adopted a wireless notebook computer requirement.

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Which courses have a technology pre-requisite?

You will find your laptop useful in almost every class for notetaking, research, presentations, and team projects. However, there are a number of courses that require every student to bring a laptop to class. These courses include:

Course Number Course Description
AC 314 Advanced Cost Analysis and Systems
BA 212 Computing Applications for Business
BA 216 Statistical Analysis for Business Decisions
BA 452 Quantitative Analysis

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Are There Minimum System Specifications for These Wireless Notebooks?

Yes. You will be required to own a Windows-based wireless notebook computer that meets Pepperdine University's minimum specifications.

The division also alerts students that our building is on a hill. Students may be better served by a 12" or 14" laptop weighing in around 4-5 lbs. Remember, the purpose is mobility.

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Does the Division Recommend a Particular System?

Yes, the Business Administration Division strongly recommends the Dell Latitude wireless notebook. These computers are available for purchase through the Pepperdine University Computer Store.

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Why Strongly Recommend Dell Latitude Notebooks?

We strongly recommend Dell for many reasons.

  1. Industry Leader. Dell is a market leader within the computer industry. With consistently strong earnings and significant market share, it is not a fly-by-night operation. Also, Dell's Latitude series of notebooks is built for corporate and education customers that demand powerful, durable machines with long product lifecycles. In fact, the Latitude is the only notebook to survive PC Computing's "Torture Test" seven years in a row.
  2. On-Campus Support. Pepperdine University's Information Technology department is committed to on-campus technical support. It has built a strong relationship with Dell, centered on quality support and aggressive academic pricing. Information Technology's support staff includes Dell-certified technicians that are located on-campus to diagnose and repair Dell systems. And the IT Help Desk (ext. 4357 or H-E-L-P) helps students resolve many general computer issues over the phone.
  3. Consistent Platform. Classroom time is valuable. To make the best use of each class period, our faculty will teach to two primary standards. First, we will teach to the Microsoft Windows standard. Not only is this due to core business software that is only available on the Windows platform, but it also permits our faculty to develop a single, consistent set of in-class software instructions. Second, we will teach to the Dell Latitude standard. Hardware features vary from computer to computer. For example, to activate the VGA port on the back of a Dell Latitude to project a PowerPoint presentation, a student would toggle Function-F8. The same process will differ on other systems. To maximize class time, our faculty will teach to the Dell Latitude hardware standard, and students with other systems will be responsible to refer to their instruction manuals to achieve the same outcomes.
  4. Other Objectives. Dell notebooks offer many other advantages. They are built with mobility in mind, they offer advanced graphics, and the warranty includes international support options. This is key for our International Business students who are required to study abroad.

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Does the Business Administration Division Also Require Software?

Yes. All Business students will be expected to own Microsoft's Office 2013 or newer.

Other course-related software will be included with the respective textbook(s), if applicable.

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I Entered Before the 2003/2004 Catalog, Does This Requirement Apply to Me?

This requirement does not apply to students who entered or transferred into the division prior to the 2003/2004 catalog. At the same time, we strongly recommend that students consider the purchase of one of the bundles.

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I am a Pre-Business Major, Does This Requirement Apply to Me?

If you entered Seaver College under the 2003/2004 catalog or later, this requirement applies. All students within the Division, including Pre-Business and fully-admitted majors, must own a Windows-based wireless notebook computer that meets the university's minimum specifications.

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Are There Any Exceptions to This Wireless Notebook Requirement?

There are no exceptions to this requirement at this time. All Business Division students who entered under catalog year 2003/2004 or later must own a Windows-based wireless notebook computer that meets the university's minimum specifications.

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When Do I Purchase? How? How Much?

Students may purchase one of Seaver College's recommended student notebook bundles through the Pepperdine University Computer Store.

Please contact the Computer Store for prices and options.

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Are There Any Added Benefits to Purchasing a Dell Latitude System Through the Computer Store?

Yes. First, the Latitude systems are available at a special academic discount. You should notice a considerable savings by purchasing a system through the Pepperdine University Computer Store.

Next, since Pepperdine University is an authorized Dell repair center, students who own a Dell computer -- regardless if purchased through the Computer Store or Dell Direct -- may seek on-campus repair service.

Finally, remember that classroom instruction will focus on the Dell Latitude hardware standard. Students may own or purchase systems from other manufacturers, but those students will be responsible to refer to their owner's manual or the manufacturer's Web site to achieve the same in-class outcomes on their computers.

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Apple Laptops

Why Can't I Use an Apple Laptop Computer?

Our platform requirement is driven by our curriculum. Many of the core applications that the Business Administration Division uses for statistical analysis and simulation are not available for the Apple Macintosh platform. These packages have also been identified as incompatible or unreliable with Windows-on-Mac emulation applications such as VirtualPC. Even with dual-boot or virtualization tools, this software may not run and is not currently supported by Apple or the University. Given these issues, we cannot support multiple platforms. Therefore, we have standardized on Windows 7 running on hardware designed for Windows. We strongly encourage all students to consider a Dell Latitude laptop for the best level of support during your academic career.

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What About the New Intel-based MacBooks with "Boot Camp"?

The division is aware of recent hardware changes in Apple's laptop lineup. While these changes are very promising, currently Apple laptops still do not meet our division requirements. Even though users may be able to run Windows on their Mac laptops, this does not change the fact that Apple laptops were designed to be Apples not Windows machines.

Given this fundamental support problem, all incoming students are expected to own Windows-based PC laptops that meet the university's minimum specifications. Apple laptops do not satisfy our requirement.

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What Problems Exist with Apple's "Boot Camp" Solution?

We have tested an Apple MacBook Pro and confirmed a number of issues that have been acknowledged by Apple Computer and others.

The top three reasons why Apple laptops do not meet our requirements:

  1. No Support. While Apple makes the BootCamp software available, the company does not provide any support for BootCamp or Windows on Mac laptops.
  2. Designed to be Macs. MacBooks are designed to be Macs, not PCs. They lack two-button mouse operation. They lack useful keys such as Del, Page Up, Page Down, Home, End, Insert, etc.
  3. Overheating. This is a critical flaw. The Beta version of BootCamp does not provide proper power and heat management. Mac laptops running Windows will build up excessive heat. In time, the Intel processor will shut itself off due to extreme heat -- crashing the computer.

Here is a list of the BootCamp issues we are aware of. This is not an exhaustive list.

  • No two-button mouse built-in.
  • Heat dissipation not working properly in Windows on Mac.
  • Power management is not optimized and users report faster battery drain in Windows.
  • No dedicated Delete key; the Apple delete key is a backspace. Must remap keyboard.
  • iSight camera does not work in Windows; will crash computer.
  • Bluetooth does not seem reliable in Windows.
  • Apple Remote Control does not work in Windows.
  • The Windows "Show Pointer Location" feature doesn't work.
  • Plugging in headphones does not disable the internal speaker.
  • USB/Firewire ports are disabled in Windows "locked" mode.
  • Issues writing to Windows partition. NTFS is the best Windows format for reliability and security. Mac OS can read NTFS, but cannot write to NTFS.
  • When rebooting to start Mac or Windows, the date information is frequently lost on both platforms; must reset clock.
  • MacBook Pro sudden motion sensor doesn't function.
  • MacBook Pro ambient light sensor doesn't function.
  • Users have complained that on wake from sleep Windows loses its brightness settings.
  • Users have complained that laptop will not stay in sleep mode; reports that Windows will wake from sleep by itself.
  • Users have complained that they cannot switch users properly; reports that mouse and trackpad fail to operate after switching users in Windows.

The lack of Apple support for BootCamp and Windows on Mac remains the #1 issue for our division.

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I'm Not a Business Division Major, Does This Requirement Apply to Me?

Technically, no. This requirement only applies to Business Division majors.

However, if you intend to minor or pursue an emphasis/concentration in Business, your program may include a number of business courses that will require you to bring your own Windows-based wireless laptop to classes. Please review the list of known courses or consult with the appropriate business professor to identify any course-specific technology requirements.

Also, if you enter as "undeclared," please plan your computer purchase carefully.

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I'm Pursuing a Business Concentration/Emphasis in a Different Major, Does This Requirement Apply to Me?

Technically, no. This requirement only applies to Business Division majors.

However, your program may include a number of business courses that will require you to bring your own Windows-based wireless laptop to classes. Please review the list of known courses or consult with the appropriate business professor to identify any course-specific technology requirements.

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I am Pursuing a Business-Related Contract major, Does This Requirement Apply to Me?

Please review the main eligibility notice for information about contract major information.

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I Plan to Change My Major to Business, Will This Requirement Apply to Me?

Yes, this requirement applies to all Business Division majors. Once you change majors, you will be required to own a Windows-based wireless notebook computer that meets the university's minimum specifications.

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What if I Already Own a Windows-based Wireless Notebook Computer?

To meet the Business Administration Division's requirement, your notebook computer should comply with the university's minimum specifications. You may be able to upgrade your existing computer to meet these minimums. Contact your system manufacturer or the store where you purchased your computer for upgrade options. If your computer cannot be upgraded to meet the minimums, then you should purchase a new computer.

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I Own a Windows-based Desktop Computer, Why Can't I Use That?

Desktop computers do not fulfill our requirement. In a number of classes, you will be expected to bring your notebook computer to take notes, make presentations, or complete in-class coursework. A desktop system doesn't offer the mobility required by the division.

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