Laptop Requirements for Incoming IBT students – 2017

For students entering the IBT program at North Park, here are the official requirements for laptops. Please be sure to review the requirements carefully before making a purchase.

Hardware Requirements

MAC: Any Apple Macintosh laptop currently available for purchase meets hardware requirements for the IBT program at North Park.

PC: For Windows-based PC laptops, the following are minimum hardware requirements:

  • 13″ Screen
  • 1024×768 resolution
  • Intel Core2 Duo 1.73 GHz (or equivalent, eg. AMD product)
  • 4 GB Memory
  • 250 GB Hard Drive
  • Wireless Network Adapter (must support 802.11 n)
  • Microsoft Windows 7 or 8

Software Requirements

MAC and PC: Regardless of the type of computer you purchase, the following programs must be installed.

  • Microsoft Office – Home and Student edition
  • NOTE: Any current version of Office with Word, Excel, and Powerpoint is suitable.  The Professional edition of Office is not required nor recommended.
  • Anti-virus protection

Power Requirements

If (and only if) the laptop being purchased has a battery life of 5 hours or less, a second battery must be purchased.  Students will require the use of their laptops for 7 hours each day at North Park. Access to power outlets for charging during the school day is not guaranteed and is not normally provided.


We strongly recommend that:

  • an extended warranty providing next-day (or immediate in-store repair) be purchased
  • a high-capacity USB key (> 4 GB) or external hard drive be purchased for file backup
  • your laptop be added to the list of items covered by your home insurance policy
  • A second battery be purchased, even if your laptop battery can last longer than the 7hr minimum requirement.

A Note About Netbooks/Tablets

North Park does not recommend the purchase of “netbooks” for use in the IBT program at North Park.  These computers, while inexpensive, typically have extremely small screens and keyboards.  Students will use their laptop for many hours each day for the next four years.  In our opinion, netbooks are not ergonomically sound and do not typically stand up to the amount of daily use that can be expected in the IBT program.  In addition, most netbooks do not meet the minimum hardware requirements for the IBT program, as noted above.

A Note to MAC Users

Students who choose to purchase a MacBook will need to install Microsoft Office (for MAC) onto their MacBook’s.  Also, the Grade 9 Geography course requires the use of Windows based software, so MAC users will need to partition their hard-drives and install Windows on their computers for this course. Visit for information on this.  Also, students new to MACs should visit for a beginner’s guide.

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