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Technical Requirements

Things You Need

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We are excited that you are taking the next step along your educational journey with NAU! Understanding the hardware and software requirements to run your course content, applications and classroom environment is key to becoming a successful online student.

While you can do some of your work on mobile and hybrid devices, such as Tablets and Surfaces, most of the time you need access to a desktop or laptop computer that is running Windows (10 or newer) or MacOS (Monterey or newer). It is important to have a backup plan in case the device you are using is not compatible with some software, or a website that is required to complete an assignment. Chromebooks are compatible with most programs, but may not offer the best experience, depending on configuration. Below is some general information regarding what you will need to complete your coursework.

Note that some classes will also require course specific software. In those cases, the software will either be provided, or you will need to purchase it from the bookstore, along with your books.


It is important to have regular access to a Desktop or Laptop that is running either Windows (10+ Not S), or Mac OS* (Monterey/18+).  8GB RAM or higher recommended.

A Chromebook** with at least 4GB of RAM is required. An 11 inch or larger screen is required, 14-15 inch or greater is recommended.

* The Construction Management and Information Technology programs include courses that require software which will not run natively on MacOS. You will be required to use either BootCamp, Parallels, or Fusion, with a Windows license (these are NOT included and must be purchased individually).

** The Construction Management and Information Technology programs include courses that require software which is not compatible with Chromebooks. Students entering these programs should plan on purchasing a compatible computer (see above) as soon as is practical.

High Speed Internet Connection

A high-speed internet connection is required, with speeds greater than 3 mbps down and 1 mbps up. You can go to and click on the blue "Run Speed Test" button for a free and easy test. 

Microsoft Office

MS Office is a suite of programs that includes Word and PowerPoint, as well as other useful programs. You will use these programs to complete many of your assignments. As a student, you will get Office for free. There is a walkthrough of how to get Office here.

A Recommended Browser

Though many browsers may work, we recommend you use either Chrome or Firefox. You can find more information here.

Adobe Acrobat Reader

There are some files you will need to open, called PDF files. To open and read these, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader. You can get Adobe Reader here.


Some web pages you use will require Java to run properly. You can download or update Java by going here.


If you have additional technology-related questions, please reach out to our Helpdesk by going here.

NAU Technical Support Hours:
800-548-0602 or 605-394-5049
Monday thru Friday - 7:00 am to 4:00 pm (MDT)

National American University IT Team


National American University, 5301 Mount Rushmore Rd., Rapid City, SD 57701, United States


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