Technical Requirements

Northcentral University uses electronic communications. Students must have email access with the capability to send and receive attached files. Students must also be able to navigate the World Wide Web. We recommend the following hardware requirements:

  • Intel P4 (minimum of 2 Ghz) or faster processor
  • Minimum 512 MB RAM, 1GB or greater is recommended
  • Minimum 20 GB of free hard disk space, 40 GB or greater is recommended
  • CD-ROM drive, thumb drive and external hard drive
  • Minimum of 56 Kbps or faster modem, Broadband (high-speed at 144 Kbps or faster), DSL, Cable or better is recommended
  • Color monitor, keyboard, mouse and access to a printer

Computer Equipment

Computers and other peripheral equipment can be purchased through Northcentral's Computer Purchase Program offered by Dell. Costs vary depending on the system components you select. Students will need an Internet Service Provider (ISP) and an email address. It is recommended that a local Internet Service Provider, in the area where the Student or Faculty Mentor resides, be contacted who can provide technical assistance should it be needed. We require the following software applications for PC systems:

  • Minimum of Microsoft Windows XP or Vista, Microsoft Windows 7 is recommended
  • Minimum of Microsoft Office (Word, Excel and PowerPoint) 2003, Microsoft Office 2007 or above is recommended
  • IE 8, Firefox 3.6 or Safari 4.0
  • Adobe Reader 9 or latest version and Adobe Flash Player 10
  • High-quality antivirus software

We require the following software applications for MAC systems:

  • MAC OS X is recommended 
  • Microsoft Office 2008 for MAC or above
  • Firefox 3.6 or Safari 4.0
  • Adobe Reader 9 or latest version and Adobe Flash Player 10
  • High-quality antivirus software

A virus is a program that can destroy information on your hard drive and/or external drive(s). The virus may corrupt just a single file, or it may corrupt multiple files, including the system files needed to run your computer. Viruses can be transferred to your computer by using someone else's file that you obtained, usually via a floppy disk, or as an email attachment. It is important to use a virus checker to detect viruses that may exist. Software such as Norton AntiVirus, locates known viruses and warns the user of their existence. Since new viruses are constantly being created, it is important to regularly update your list of known viruses.

Northcentral uses standardized Rich Text Format (.rtf) and Postscript Document File (.pdf) for information the University sends out. This assures the widest compatibility. Northcentral works with Microsoft Word, which normally has a .doc or .docx extender on files it creates, and provides direct readability for prior versions of Word and several other word processors. Adobe Acrobat Reader may be useful for accessing information on the Internet, and is recommended.

Download the latest version of Microsoft Internet Explorer (free) at

Download the latest version of Adobe Acrobat (free) at