student using laptop

Computing Requirements

Make sure your devices meet UCSF, School of Dentistry standards

In addition to the following requirements, all School of Dentistry students are required to meet the UCSF campuswide Technology Requirements for Students. Please note that the following also meet the schoolwide hardware and operating system requirements and restrictions.

Financial Aid Note: If you need financial assistance to purchase a computer to meet the requirements outlined below, please visit Cost of Attendance - Exceptions to the Standard Student Budget - Computer Purchases.

Hardware Requirement

All students must own a computer that meets either Configuration A or Configuration B. If something is not listed as required, we offer no specific recommendations and suggest that you make purchase decisions based on your budget, features, and preference for Mac or PC.

Options

Configuration A (required if not buying a new computer)

Configuration B (required if buying a new computer)

Lists the specifications we require if you have purchased a new computer within the past 2 years and do not plan on buying a new computer. This configuration likely will not provide adequate performance through the end of your program.

Lists the specifications we require if you need to purchase a new computer. This configuration likely will provide adequate performance for 3 to 4 years.

Regardless of when you purchase your computer, plan on upgrading or purchasing a new computer 3 to 4 years later.

Specifications

Configuration A (not new)

Configuration B (new)

Processor

Intel Core i5 or i7 processor

Intel Core i5 or i7 processor. Select the newest generation available (currently 8th generation).

Memory (RAM)

8 GB or more

8 GB or more

Hard drive

256 GB or larger SSD

256 GB or larger SSD

Graphics hardware

No specific requirement

Select a graphics hardware option upgrade if available.

Printer

Yes

Yes

Security cable

Required only for portable computers that include a locking mechanism (e.g., Kensington security slot).

Required only for portable computers that include a locking mechanism (e.g., Kensington security slot).

Warranty

Not required

3 years parts and labor with on-site or in-store support

Additional Minimum System Requirements

Windows

Mac

Operating system

Windows 10 (Home, Pro, Education or Enterprise)

macOS Sierra 10.12 or later

Screen resolution

1024 x 768 or higher

1024 x 768 or higher

Note: Only genuine, U.S.-English versions of Windows Operating Systems are supported. Alternate versions of Windows 10, such as Windows RT and Windows 10 S, are not supported.

Restrictions

No Apple MacBooks or Core M Processors

Apple MacBook Air and MacBook Pro are fine, but 2015 to 2017 MacBooks have notably underpowered processors (Intel 4.5W Y-Series) and do not meet our requirements. Additionally, PCs containing Core M or Y-Series processors do not meet our requirements. If you have one of these devices we recommend that you do not use it for anything involving UCSF business, research or studies.

No Netbooks or Chromebooks

Netbooks and tablets are small, lightweight, and relatively inexpensive computing devices. They do not meet our requirements due to low processing power and lack of capabilities. The use of Chromebooks raises significant security and privacy concerns. Chromebooks are not supported by the encryption software that UCSF provides, and personal Google accounts — including Gmail — are not HIPAA-compliant. If you have a Chromebook, we recommend that you do not use it for anything involving UCSF business, research or studies.

No Tablets

An iPad or Android tablet alone does not meet our requirements; however, the use of a tablet as a companion device is fine. Dental students may take ExamSoft exams on an iPad as long as you have an external keyboard (USB or Bluetooth). Bluetooth keyboards must be paired prior to launching exam.

Minimum ExamSoft System Requirements for iPad

Hardware

iPad 3+, iPad Air+, iPad Mini+, iPad Pro

Operating system

iOS 8 and higher (only genuine versions)

Memory

500 MB of free space required to commence an exam

No Microsoft Surface or Surface Laptop

Non-Pro versions of Microsoft Surface and the Surface Laptop do not meet our requirements due to incompatible hardware and operating systems, including Windows RT and Windows 10 S. Software we require will not run on these versions of Windows. If you have one of these devices, we recommend that you do not use it for anything involving UCSF business, research or studies.

The Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 and 2017 Surface Pro are fine if equipped with an i5 or i7 processor. An external keyboard (USB or Bluetooth) is required for taking ExamSoft exams, and Bluetooth keyboards must be paired prior to launching exam. In addition, the screen resolution must be 1920 x 1080.

Additional School of Dentistry Requirements

  1. You are required to own a privacy screen and use it during ALL computer-based exams.
    A privacy screen is a filter that attaches over your device’s display to make information visible only to you. You’ll need to select one that fits your device; see 3M Privacy and Screen Protectors for examples. When not taking an exam that requires it, we do not require you to use the privacy screen. Most privacy filters detach easily, enabling you to use them only when needed.
  2. You are required to install ExamSoft Examplify software for taking exams. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are running the most recent version of Examplify at all times.
    Examplify for Mac
    Examplify for PC
  3. Your laptop must be able to operate on battery for at least three hours of normal activity (e.g., web browsing, word processing, wireless). For computer-based exams, we cannot guarantee in every case that your seat or setting will provide you with access to power.

Questions

Contact:

UCSF School of Dentistry - Learner Success Center
707 Parnassus Ave., D3215, San Francisco, CA 94143
sod.curriculumsupport@ucsf.edu Tel: 415.502.3328