Technology Resources FAQ for Undergraduate Students

The information here provides answers to questions frequently asked by undergraduate students about technology resources available to them in support of remote learning.  The questions and answers also address changes to IT services and resources for Fall 2020 that are a result of Covid-19 social distancing guidelines.

For all students

I need to purchase a new computer or tablet. Does Princeton have a computer program for students?

Yes. Princeton’s program, known as the Student Computer Initiative (SCI), offers both Apple and Dell computer models, as well as a tablet. You can view program and model details online at www.princeton.edu/sci

Aid students can find more information about pay and loan options on the Undergraduate Financial Aid Computer Purchases web page.

Note to international students attending remotely:  It is recommended that you purchase your computer locally rather than through the SCI program. The vendors who supply the computers in our SCI program are unable to deliver, or are experiencing long delays in delivery, to international locations at this time. Please log into the SCI Store to view recommended computer specifications. Students who were planning to purchase an SCI computer using the financial aid option should contact Lexi Samuel a.samuel@princeton.edu in the Financial Aid office to discuss alternative purchasing plans. 

For more information about the SCI program, search the Princeton Service Portal for ‘SCI Fall2020’ or Contact Us.

How do I access academic software (like MATLAB and STATA) previously available on OIT cluster computers?

With Vi-Lab and a standard computer browser, faculty, researchers, and students can access academic software such as Mathematica, Matlab, Perl, R, R Studio, Scientific Workplace, Stata and Office 365, to name a few. Access Vi-Lab at princeton.apporto.com.

Is software available for my computer?

Yes. Go to www.princeton.edu/software for a list of software that is available for download. Here, you’ll also find instructions for installing and using the software. Through Princeton’s site and volume licensing, many software packages are available at no charge to faculty, students and/or staff. If you have questions, send email to oitstore@princeton.edu.

For more information about software you can download, search the Princeton Service Portal for ‘Software Fall2020’ or Contact Us.

I need Adobe Creative Cloud for my coursework. Where can I get it?

Adobe Creative Cloud (CC)  is available to students at a discounted rate of $19.99 per month. Visit the Adobe website for more details. 

For financial aid students, the Books and Personal allotment can be used to cover the monthly cost for Adobe Creative Cloud.

For students off campus

I need financial support to help cover the cost of Internet service. What should I do?

For aid students, the Books and Personal allowance in the at-home and off-campus aid budget has been increased by $450 above the typical on campus amount in order to help with the cost of basic technology services, such as Wi-Fi service. For many families receiving need-based aid, this will reduce the amount due to Princeton, freeing up part of the parental contribution to cover this expense. For high-need students, this amount may be part of a credit available on the student account. For questions, please contact the Financial Aid office at faoffice@princeton.edu.

Internet service is not reliable where I live. What should I do?

We have a tool and tips to help you. The Tiger Speed tool checks your Internet performance from where you are to Princeton. You can give it a try here, tigerspeed.princeton.edu.

For tips to improve your home network performance, search the Princeton Service Portal for 'Tiger Speed.' If these tips don't work and problems persist, contact the OIT Solutions Center by phone, email or chat for a consultation. 

For aid students, the Technology budget can be applied to the cost for improved Internet service by your Internet Service Provider (ISP). 

If you continue to have difficulty, please contact your Dean or DOS.

I need access to online library resources to complete my coursework. How do I do this from off campus? 

There are several ways to access online library resources from off campus. See the Princeton University Library website for the appropriate tools for “Using Library Resources from Off-Campus.”  For library-related questions, you can also contact the Library's Ask Us! support resources. 

My computer or tablet is broken. What should i do?

At this time, OIT cannot fix technology for students who are off-campus. However, technology specialists can help advise on issues and potential avenues for repair. Contact the OIT Solutions Center by phone, email or chat. An OIT technology specialist will consult with you on the issues you are experiencing and provide advice.

I have a temporary need for a laptop or a tablet. Can I borrow one?

If you need a temporary computer while yours is being repaired, you can arrange to borrow one from the OIT Technology Loaner program. Contact the OIT Solutions Center by phone, email or chat to inquire about the loaner program and options.

If extenuating circumstances are creating learning challenges for you, please contact your Residential College Dean/DOS, as they can help provide academic support. 

A note to international students attending remotely: Unfortunately, we cannot ship loaner laptops internationally. If you have an immediate need, please contact your Residential College Dean/DOS to discuss options.

I need a printer or scanner. What should I do?

Financial aid students should refer to the Undergraduate Financial Aid Computer Purchases web page for information about purchasing printers or scanners.

For students on campus

Are the OIT computing clusters open?

Due to the COVID-19 social distancing guidelines, the OIT Computing Clusters are closed and computers have been removed from these locations across campus. The computers, academic software, printing, and scanning services previously provided at our cluster locations are now being offered in other ways.

For more information about the campus clusters, search the Princeton Service Portal for ‘Clusters Fall2020’ or Contact Us.

Are printers available?

Printers and printing supplies for student use are provided in all dorms and at the Frist Campus Center. For locations see “Campus Clusters: Getting Started.”

For more information about printing on campus, search the Princeton Service Portal for ‘student printing Fall2020’ or Contact Us.

My computer isn’t working. What should I do?

To start, contact the OIT Solutions Center by phone, email or chat and request assistance with your computer. An OIT technology specialist will consult with you on the issues you are experiencing. If your computer can be repaired, you will receive a Work Order number and instructions for dropping off your computer at the OIT Solutions Center in the Frist Campus Center. An OIT technical specialist will be available to accept your computer for repair services. When repaired, your computer will be available for pickup from the same location.

I have a temporary need for a laptop or a tablet. Can I borrow one?

If you need a temporary computer while yours is being repaired, you can arrange to borrow one from the OIT Technology Loaner program. Contact the OIT Solutions Center by phone, email or chat to inquire about the loaner program and options.

If extenuating circumstances are creating learning challenges for you, please contact your Residential College Dean/DOS, as they can help provide academic support.

For more information about the Technology Loaner program, Contact Us.

I need a headset for remote learning. What should I do?

Purchase a headset. For financial aid students, the Books and Personal allotment can cover the cost for the headset.

If you have an immediate need for a headset, please contact the OIT Solutions Center by phone, email or chat to inquire about other options.

I am on campus and returning home for Thanksgiving and don’t have reliable Internet access. What should I do?

For aid students, the Books and Personal allowance in the on-campus budget for students departing for Thanksgiving is $100 above the typical on-campus amount to help with the cost of basic technology services, such as Wi-Fi, for the three week period. For many families receiving need-based aid, this will reduce the amount due to Princeton, freeing up part of the parental contribution to cover this expense. For high-need students, this amount may be part of a credit available on the student account at the beginning of the term. For questions, please contact Financial Aid at faoffice@princeton.edu.

Don't see your question?

Don't see your question about information technology listed?  We'd like to help.

For answers, you can search the Princeton Service Portal at www.princeton.edu/service. To view the technology services that are of particular interest for the fall, search the knowledge for 'Fall2020.'

The OIT Support and Operations Center (SOC) is also available to help by phone, email or chat.