ITS Online

Faculty Purchasing Recommendations

Below are the ITS recommendations for faculty research account purchases for desktop computers, laptops, software and printers.

ITS support only extends to systems owned by the Law School. All equipment purchased with Law School funds remains the property of the University and must be purchased by ITS.

Office Equipment

Faculty are provided with a standard Dell computer and monitor, and a desk-side printer for their office. Research funds can be used with the Dean’s approval to supplement or replace equipment in faculty offices.

What Can I Purchase with Research Funds?

The Law School purchase policy limits the use of faculty research funds to pay for technology equipment for business use outside the office.  

  • Faculty who want to purchase more than one device can purchase: 
    • One laptop of any size or one desktop.
    • One laptop of a different size.
    • One iPad.
    • No two laptops of the same size.
    • The research allowance will be charged an additional fee of $2,000 upon purchase of the third item.
    • The additional fee would also be charged in a year in which any of the three pieces of equipment is upgraded, but no more than once in any one year.
  • All purchases must be covered with current year research funds.
  • Equipment purchases that are not recommended by ITS may require special approval from the Dean.
  • Visiting faculty cannot use their research funds for desktop computers, laptops, or iPads.

Please note: PDA’s, iPhones, smartphones, cellphones, cellular network cards or their services are not provided by ITS and are currently not reimbursable from research funds.

Purchasing Deadlines

If you are buying a new system, please make your purchase requests by the end of April for the current fiscal year. This is necessary in order to complete all transactions prior to the annual invoice deadline.

We get a large number of requests at the end of the fiscal year, so please submit your requests as early as possible to avoid delays in setting up your new equipment.

What Happens to My Old Equipment?

If you are replacing a desktop or laptop purchased with research funds, you have the option of returning the equipment or purchasing it from the Law School. If you are leaving the Law School, you may return the equipment or purchase it.

Purchasing Process

  1. Review the recommended systems below and contact David Roush ( with your choices and/or questions.
  2. David will submit your purchasing request to Ernie Gonsalves for approval.
  3. After approved, your equipment will be ordered and delivered to the Law School.
  4. ITS will install software, configure your system, and contact you to migrate data/settings from your old equipment.

It will normally take about one month to receive your new computer. You should expect longer delays during the following periods:

  • January, September, and December (start of semester)
  • Late April & May (high volume of end-of-year purchases)

ITS Recommended Systems

All systems below are designed to be supported by ITS for at least four years and to or exceed the recommendations of ISC, Penn’s central computing organization, for desktops and laptops.

Windows Laptops

All Dell models come equipped with Windows 7 Enterprise, an integrated Webcam & Microphone, 802.11a/b/g/n wireless card, Bluetooth, internal DVD+/-RW drive (writes CDs & DVDs), and a 3 year next business day, onsite warranty.

See the table below for a side-by-side comparison.  The Surface Pro 3 Tablet uses the new Windows 8.1 OS.

  Tablet Fullsize Midsize Small
Model Microsoft Surface Pro 3
Dell Latitude E5550
Dell Latitude E7450 Dell Latitude E7250
Dimensions 11.5” W x 7.93” D x .36” H 14.8” W x 10.1” D x .9” H 13.3” W x 9.12” D x .8” H 12.5” W x 8.3” D x .76” H
Weight 1.76 lbs 4.71 lbs 3.43 lbs 2.76 lbs
Display 12” (2160 x 1440, 216 ppi) 15.6” (1920x1080, 141 ppi) 14” (1920x1080, 157 ppi) 12.5” (1366x768, 125 ppi)
Processor Intel i7 3.3GHz (dual) Intel  i5 2.2GHz (dual) Intel i5 12.3GHz (dual) Intel i5 2.3GHz (dual)
Memory 8GB 8GB 8GB 8GB
Hard Drive 256GB 500TB 500GB 256GB
Graphics Intel HD Graphics 5000 Intel HD Graphics 5500 Intel HD Graphics 5500 Intel HD Graphics 5500
Est. Price $1650 ~$1300 ~$1400 ~$1600

Mac Laptops

All Mac models come equipped with Mac OS X 10.9, an integrated Webcam & Microphone, 802.11ac wireless card, Bluetooth, and a 3 year mail-in warranty.

If you are switching from a PC, you should be prepared for the following differences.

  • DVD writers are sold separately
  • You cannot open WordPerfect files
  • Warranty service requires mailing in your equipment or visiting an Apple Store
Model MacBook Pro 15 inch MacBook Pro 13 inch MacBook Air 13 inch
Dimensions 14.13” W x 9.73” D x 0.71” H 12.35” W x 8.62” D x 0.75” H  12.8” W x 8.94” D x .68” H
Weight 4.46 lbs 3.46 lbs  2.96lbs
Display 15.4” (2880x1800, 220 ppi) 13.3” (2560x1600, 227 ppi)  13.3” (1440x900, 128 ppi)
Processor Intel i7 2.2GHz (quad) Intel i5 2.4GHz (dual)  Intel i5 1.4GHz (dual)
Memory 16GB 8GB  8GB
Hard Drive 256GB 256GB  256GB
Graphics Intel Iris Pro Graphics Intel Iris Graphics  Intel HD Graphics 5000
Est. Price ~$2100 ~$1600  ~$1600


Model OptiPlex 9020 Small Form Factor

24.0 inch Dell UltraSharp U2413 (1920 x 1200, 94 ppi)

27.0 inch Dell UltraSharp U2713H (2560 x 1440, 109 ppi)

Processor Intel® Core i7-4770 3.4GHz (quad)
Memory 16GB
Hard Drive 1TB
Video Intel Integrated HD4600 (1 DisplayPort, 1 DVI)
Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 Enterprise
Optical Drive Internal DVD+/-RW (writes CDs and DVDs)
Hardware Support 3 years,
next business day, onsite
Estimated Price

~$1000 for PC, $500 for 24” LCD, $700 for 27” LCD

Warranty Renewal for Existing Systems

Faculty who you plan on keeping their systems over three years should purchase an additional warranty. One additional year costs approximately $150 and two years is approximately $250. If you would like a quote, please contact us.

Additional Software

Additional software can be purchased on a per license basis.

  • Corel WordPerfect: $45
  • Adobe Acrobat Pro: $99
  • EndNote: $249
  • SAS: $85 per year
  • SPSS: $85 per year

Additional software is available through the Office of Software Licensing.

Dictation Software

  • Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred: $199
  • Headset for Dictation: $79


ITS recommends the 16GB WiFi + WiFi model for the majority of business and research functions. If you plan on storing several HD movies for offline viewing on the iPad, a 32GB model may be needed.

Size 9.7” diagonal, 1lb
Screen 2048-by-1536-pixel resolution
Connectivity: Wi+Fi, 3G, 4G LTE
Camera: 5-megapixel iSight rear camera, VGA FaceTime front camera
Battery 10 hours WiFi, 9 hours 4G


  • 16GB WiFi + 4G Verizon: $629
  • 32GB WiFi + 4G Verizon: $729


Penn Computing: Apple iPad

Recommended Printers

Personal Printer HP LaserJet M401dw 35 ppm $300
Multifunction Printer
HP LaserJet M425dn 35 ppm $450

External Backup Drives

Please note: ITS now adds an external backup drive for all home desktop and laptop purchases, unless faculty have already purchased one with their research funds.

Custom Configured Systems

If you opt to go outside of ITS’s recommended systems, it may require special approval from the Dean.

Penn Computer Connection

The Penn Computer Connection sells laptops and desktops at an academic discount. Please goto the Computer Connection website for more information (requires PennKey authentication).

HP Printers

For alternate HP printer models, please visit the HP Printers website.

Dell Computers

  1. Build and configure your own system from the Dell Higher Education Online Store.

  2. Select the specific model you wish to configure and select your options, then click Update Price when done.

  3. After you have configured the system to your satisfaction, update the price one final time, and then click Save E-Quote at the bottom of the page.

  4. A new page will open, asking you for your information. For the fields marked E-Quote Name and Description, please enter your full name. Note - Please fill in only the fields marked with the red asterisk.

  5. Your Configuration and E-Quote will be mailed to you. Please save this email; it will be necessary when you are ready to purchase your system. This E-Quote will save your exact pricing and configuration for 30 days, making your configuration easily retrievable. Once you have the quote, forward it onto to continue the process.

Please keep in mind that customizing your system may hinder the ability of ITS to support the system.


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