Faculty/Staff (Admin) Computing

Each year the Reynolds College of Arts and Letters (RCOAL) earmarks funds for faculty and administrative computing upgrades. Historically, RCOAL was expected to upgrade 25% of its faculty computers each year so that in the span of four years the entire faculty was upgraded once. RCOAL has chosen to include staff in computer upgrade plans as a means to effectively keep departmental offices running smoothly with appropriate computing equipment. What follows are the guidelines RCOAL uses to determine the annual list of computer upgrades for full-time faculty and staff. This is a working document that will evolve as the College develops new and better ways to handle equipment upgrades.

General Philosophy

The philosophy that guides RCOAL's computer upgrade plan consists of several key values:

  1. Adequate professional support. Faculty and staff should have what they need to meet the requirements of their job.
  2. Responsible stewardship of funds. RCOAL should spend these funds in the most cost effective way possible.
  3. Balance. RCOAL should strive to find the appropriate balance between computer upgrade needs and the general equipment needs.

Upgrade Structure

Computer users are divided into two categories: Standard and Advanced. See Table 1 for full descriptions. All faculty and staff must be assigned to one of these categories. Department heads or their designees will compile an upgrade list based on either a rotation system or a waterfall system. However, all departments must make assignments according to the general philosophy and the policies stated below.

Individuals at the advanced level may get computers beyond the standard configuration, but a rationale must accompany these requests. Since the university’s standard configuration is now a fairly powerful machine, the intermediate user category has been removed. Standard users will get either a standard configuration computer or an appropriate recycled computer. Department heads may wish to request an upgrade of components for an existing computer for an individual scheduled for an upgrade. All computers recycled to faculty and staff within the College will count as one of the allotted upgrades for the department of the person receiving the recycled computer. Department heads will be asked to justify any recyclable computers not used in the upgrade process.

Table 1: User Level Definitions and Corresponding Computer Configurations
User Level Professional Duties Configuration
Advanced Animation, high resolution image manipulation, computer-assisted drawing (CAD), multimedia design, high-end web design, non-linear video editing, audio recording and editing Customized PC/Mac
Standard Desktop publishing, page layout design, low resolution and/or limited image manipulation (Photoshop), PowerPoint, standard web design, music notation, smart accompaniment, online courses, word-Processing, standard office functions, Internet and email computing Standard configuration PC/Mac

Recycled PC/Mac computer


  1. If the department has recyclable computers, these must be considered first before asking for new computers at the standard level as appropriate. However, all recycled computers must meet the minimum standards listed below.
  2. Upgrade funds will be used for computer units only (CPU and monitor, or in special cases for notebook computers). Peripherals such as printers, scanners, software, etc. will be moved to the appropriate academic equipment list and department heads may prioritize accordingly. Memory, processor and drive upgrades (internal to CPU) may be included on the upgrade list.
  3. All requests above the standard must be accompanied by rationale explaining what advanced activities the user must perform.
  4. Requests for notebook computers are strongly discouraged because they are difficult to recycle, tend to be more expensive to repair, are limited in their ability to be upgraded and accessed for maintenance, are more prone to damage and theft, and generally do not have as long a life-expectancy as desktop units. Departments are encouraged to secure communal notebook computers for faculty/staff or to check-out notebooks from the Dean’s office or Provost’s office. However, if a faculty member and his or her department head can make a compelling case for why a notebook computer is needed in a specific teaching or research situation for which there are no other available equipment funds, then the department head may submit to the Dean a request for a notebook in lieu of a desktop computer. If the request is approved, a notebook computer will be purchased.
  5. Communal use of peripherals such as scanners and printers is strongly encouraged where appropriate.
  6. Advanced level computers have a price cap of $2,000. Departments may pay difference of more expensive computers.
  7. Upgrade funds cover only the initial equipment purchase. Repairs and part/theft replacements during the equipment life are the responsibility of the department owner.

New Standard Configuration

Table 2: RCOAL's Standard Computer Configurations
Mac PC
Apple 21.5" iMac

4-year ARA warranty
Negotiated campus volume model similar to the campus standard All-In-One desktop.

5-year warranty

Minimum Configuration

Table 3: RCOAL's Minimum Computer Configurations
Mac PC
Intel processor, 2+ GHz


256GB Hard Drive

21" monitor

macOS Mojave (10.14)
Intel Core processor, 2+ GHz


256GB Hard Drive

21" monitor

Windows 10 (current build)

RCOAL Admin Computing Records

Planning (FY22)

Full-time faculty and staff who received a new computer in FY18 are due for the next computer hardware upgrade this summer in advance of the next academic/fiscal year.

Upgrade schedules

Upgrade schedules are available for each department. Tech reps should review with department heads and alert committee and dean's office of changes.


View all previous upgrade records.

RCOAL Tech Calendar


  • IT Council will solicit SCUF proposals in January with a February deadline.


  • News of SCUF allocation decisions should come in late April.
  • Faculty/Staff computer upgrade schedules will be available for review by RCOAL administrators in mid-April.
  • Faculty/Staff computer upgrades and final RCOAL SCUF purchases occur in late April thru May.


  • Approved SCUF purchasing can occur once funds are transferred in early July; however, major lab upgrades are normally scheduled the following spring, the end of the fiscal year, to maximize summer installation time.
  • IT Council approves latest ITAC recommendations and actions regarding instructional technology standards
    • No new classroom upgrade solicitations for foreseeable future. If non-SCUF funding is procured, consult with FCTL's CIT and RCOAL ITSS (Angela Barker) to plan any new classroom upgrades.
    • Read further outcomes and reports online.