Laptop Requirements

The department has a requirement that all students have a notebook computer. Most Construction Management classes emphasize cooperative projects/assignments, and a notebook computer provides the required mobility to facilitate collaboration. In today’s construction environment, computing is an integral component with the computer being the standard tool. A notebook computer is the key to having computing capability available at all times and all locations. 

If you are experiencing financial hardship and are unable to afford the technology you need to be academically successful you can contact the Financial Aid and Scholarship Office to determine if there are any resources available to assist you.  

Follow this link to Financial Aid.


A note about Mac laptops. 

We get a number of people asking about using Mac vs a PC. The CM department highly recommends that the student purchase a PC as many of the programs will not run on a Mac. Buying a Mac computer for use in the Construction Management department will ensure that you will have difficulty in completing assignments.


  • If you do not recommend Macs, then why does the CM computer lab use Mac desktops? These are wiped of their Mac software and only run the CM department software image, which is Windows. The CM department does not recommend running a student laptop this way.
  • Can I purchase a computer with a smaller processor than your recommendations? Each year we go over the processing needs of the required software and use that to determine the minimum requirements of a laptop. When projecting, we also assume that the student will have this laptop for 4 years and that the software needs will more than likely go up.
  • Where can I get programs such as Word, PowerPoint & Excel?
    Students can go onto the CAED Tech page and look under the "Software" section.
    *Note- Do not click on the "Computer Requirements" link above the "Software" title. This will take you to a set of requirements that is NOT for CM*

Recommendations: updated 5/26/21


Processor: Intel Core i7 (8th generation) or better

Memory: 16 GB RAM

Display Card: 4GB GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) or better.
*You may see something like 6GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Graphics on the box. As long as the number in front of GB is greater than 4 your graphics card will be acceptable.*


Disk Space: 1TB


Screen Size: While a 15" screen is acceptable, remember that you will be looking at large spreadsheets and plans. A 17" may be a bit heavier, but will be easier on your eyes.


For more information on computer systems, please contact the University Bookstore or visit the computer tab of their web site at Additionally, you may visit Dell University for Cal PolyMicrosoft Education or Costco.

Students can get windows 10 free through The CAED tech team can help you download this to your new computer. 

If you have any further questions, please phone or email the Construction Management Department.

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