Galveston College Computer Requirement Information
Beginning with the fall semester of 2020, all students will be required to have a computer for their classes.
Computer Specifications (Recommended minimum computer specifications)
Beginning in the fall of 2020, a computer is required for every class at Galveston College. *** Recommended minimum student computer specifications*: A laptop or notebook (mobile workstation) with the following minimum specifications*:
Screen Size: 13” to 15”
Display Resolution: 1920 by 1080
Memory: 4 GB to 8GB
Processor: Intel Core i3 – equivalent or better
Hard Drive/Storage: 256GB SSD
Keyboard: Standard Integrated Keyboard
WIFI: WIFI enabled
Other: Integrated webcam, microphone, and speakers**
Examples: Minimum examples include, but are not limited to:
- Dell Inspiron 14-3000
- Dell Inspiron 15-3000
- Dell Inspiron 5000
- Dell Latitude 3500
- HP Notebook 15
- HP 250 G7
- Equivalent or better computers are acceptable
*Students enrolling in high technology or engineering programs of study should check with their instructor for additional and/or other computer requirements.
**Instead of using your computer’s microphone and speakers when participating in an online discussion in public places (such as the College library), headphones (or earbuds) with an integrated microphone are recommended.
***Financial aid recipients may purchase with financial aid funding to cover this purchase, while other students may have access to the Galveston College Emergency Scholarship or the Laptop Loan Program. Please contact the Financial Aid Office for additional information.
Laptop Loan Program
Beginning in the fall of 2020, a computer is required for every class at Galveston College. This program was established to assist students who need off-campus computing resources during this rapid shift to online instruction. This program attempts to close the gap between those students with financial need for computing resources who do not have the financial assistance.
Galveston College’s Financial Aid Office in collaboration with the Information Technology (IT) Office provides the Laptop Loan Program to students. The Laptop Loan Program allows qualified students to borrow laptop computers from the IT department for use during a long (fall or spring) semester, saving students hundreds of dollars in college costs.
Students who do not have access to the following computer equipment, which is required to run Zoom (for web conferencing) and Canvas, may benefit from borrowing a laptop:
· Windows or Mac OS X operating systems (Google Chromebooks, iPads, iPhones, and Android tablets and phones do not support Canvas)
· A webcam
· A microphone
Applications to apply for the Galveston College Laptop Loan Program can be completed online HERE.
2020-2021 Laptop Loan Program Application
In order to be considered, students must meet the following criteria:
· Must be enrolled in an eligible program. Non eligible programs include, but are not limited to
– Non Degree Seeking, Transient, Leisure, Dual Credit, Early Admission, “Pre” programs and all Continuing Education programs
· Must be enrolled in a minimum of (3) credit hours
· Your enrollment for the semester must be paid in full, or have satisfactory payment arrangements with the Business Office
· Have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher
· Have no academic holds
· Have no financial holds
If a laptop and/or accessories are damaged, lost, stolen, or not returned while checked out by the student, the cost of repairing or replacing this laptop, and/or accessories be assessed a dollar amount of no less than $20 and no more than $600 depending on the degree of damage.
Charges that are accrued as a result of violations of these policies will result with a hold put on the Galveston College student account and will prevent the student from register for a future term, receive an official transcript, or receive a diploma until paid in full.
Abuse of laptop loan privileges may also result in disciplinary action and the inability to borrow laptop computers in the future.
Failure to return the laptop within the semester deadline date or at the time of complete withdrawal, or at the time the student stops attending courses, will be considered failure to return Galveston College property and appropriate action will be taken.
No form of illegal or illicit activities are allowed with the laptop. (i.e., hacking, pirating, viewing or downloading illegal or illicit content, etc.).
If any illegal activities occur with this laptop, the student may be subject to disciplinary rules and regulations of Galveston College, as well as referral to criminal authorities.
If a student withdraws completely from Galveston College or stops attending all of their courses, the laptop will need to be turned in immediately.
Galveston College provides computer resources for the purpose of accomplishing tasks related to the mission of the college. Authorized users are allowed to use the college’s computer resources for school related and incidental purposes, subject to the College’s Computer Use policy and other applicable college policies, and state and federal law. For additional information concerning the College’s computer usage policy and/or procedures, please consult the Galveston College Catalog and/or Student Handbook.
Laptop computers are limited in quantity and are borrowed on a first come, first serve basis to eligible students.
Applications take 3-5 business day to review. Once approved or denied, the student will be notified via Whitecaps email.
Approvals with instructions on checkout and pickup will be sent via Whitecaps email beginning the week of August 17th.
Laptop pickups will begin the week of August 24th by appointment only. The link to setup the appointment will be provided in the approval email.
Financial Aid Recipients
Financial Aid recipients (Pell, Loans, Scholarships, state grants, etc.) must use their offered funds first to purchase a computer/laptop or other required electronic equipment and software. If the total of the offered funds falls below the total cost of the tuition, fees and required books/software purchases, then they have the option to apply for the Galveston College Emergency Scholarship or the Laptop Loan Program. Contact the Financial Aid Office at 409-944-1235 or firstname.lastname@example.org to check your funds availability.
Microsoft Office 365
Galveston College provides free Microsoft Office 365 to students while they are actively and currently enrolled in courses of one credit or more. The service includes Office 2016 software downloads on up to 5 devices and 1 TB of OneDrive storage space. Students can activate their account at Microsoft Office 365.
Please refer to the Whitecaps Email and Microsoft Office 365 instructions for a guide to activate the account. Other helpful video training can be found at Microsoft 365 Basics Video Trainings.
Canvas All students should be logging into Canvas daily to check your assignments, grades, and communication from your instructors. If you are having trouble accessing Canvas or features within Canvas, please reach out to the Distance Education department at DistanceEd@gc.edu and they will assist you further. If you do decide to email the Distance Education department, please make sure to include:
· Your name
· Phone number
· Galveston College ID number
· Description of the issue you are having in Canvas
Make sure that you are checking your Whitecaps email regularly. Vital communication from the College will be sent to your Whitecaps email, including any replies to questions sent to DistanceEd@gc.edu.
Make sure that you have gone through the Canvas New Student Orientation if you have not done so already. The orientation is a quick and easy way to get familiar with the functions of Canvas. You can then find the New Student Orientation in the form of a link at the top of your Canvas Dashboard.
User ID and Password Information for Canvas:
Your Galveston College student ID is GC followed by your student ID, and your initial password is the same password you used to log into the Whitecaps portal.
Username – As provided to you by Admissions (EX. GC0123456)
Password – Login assistance is available through the GC IT Service Desk, 409-944-1352, Regents Building, R-120.
Galveston College students should check their Whitecaps email several times daily. The College will make official announcements via Whitecaps email first. Students must use their Whitecaps email address to contact Galveston College advisers and staff. For guidance logging in use the Whitecaps Email and Microsoft Office 365 instructions. For help with email, contact email@example.com or visit https://gc.edu/access-your-student-email/.
Reduced Cost or Free Internet Access
As colleges across the country move classes and services online, access to reliable internet service is critical. Below is a list of several companies providing free or low-cost internet access during the current emergency. This is list is for informational purposes only. Galveston College does not have any affiliation or contract with any of the services listed below. For questions about the services listed below, contact the company directly.
|Spectrum||Spectrum Internet® Assist – Get high-speed internet at an affordable price. Spectrum Internet Assist is available exclusively to qualified households. FEATURES – Spectrum makes it simple for qualified households to sign up for low income Internet assistance. Free Internet modem; High-speed Internet at 30 Mbps; No data caps; No contracts; Optional in-home WiFi service at $5/mo.|
|REQUIREMENTS – One or more members of your household must be a recipient of one of the following assistance programs: National School Lunch Program (NSLP); Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) of the NSLP; Supplemental Security Income (for applicants age 65+ only); Programs that do not qualify for Spectrum Internet Assist: Social Security Disability (SSD), Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), and Social Security Retirement and Survivor Benefits are different from Supplemental Security Income and do NOT meet eligibility requirements.|
|Internet Essentials from Comcast||New Applicants? It’s easy to get affordable high-speed Internet at home with Internet Essentials. New customers will receive two months of free service in response to the Coronavirus emergency. You may qualify if you are eligible for public assistance programs such as the National School Lunch Program, Housing Assistance, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, and others. Learn how to get connected today!|
|Xfinity WiFi||Xfinity WiFi – With millions of hotspots, you can stay connected at your favorite places. Enjoy Xfinity WiFi at no additional cost – it’s included with your Xfinity Internet service; Save on your wireless data plan; Get access to new security features at select hotspots across the country|
|Cox||Cox is offering reduced fees and eliminating data usage overages (link is external) to help low income and those impacted from Coronavirus challenges, like seniors and college students. Cox customers also have free access to Cox WiFi hotspots.|
|AT&T||AT&T is providing free access to its WiFi hotspots throughout the country. They are offering unlimited internet data and internet access for limited income households for $10 a month through the Access from AT&T program.|
Library and Learning Resources
Galveston College David Glenn Hunt Memorial Library services are accessible online. Students, faculty and staff can access academic eBooks to support curriculum, reference eBooks, leisure eBooks, article databases, eJournals, eMagazines, research guides, video tutorials and eCourse reserves. The library also has a live chat service available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Students can schedule individual online reference appointments, as well. All virtual services are accessible in one place for students, faculty and staff.
The Distance Education Library Resources Online Guide is designed to help students at a distance or taking online courses locate and use Galveston College library’s online resources and research tools. Students can access the guide at Distance Education Library Resources. For assistance, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or view the library’s FAQ page https://gc.libanswers.com/.
Question and Answers - Laptop Loan Program
1. Who is eligible to borrow a laptop?
To be eligible, you must be a student enrolled at Galveston College with a minimum of three (3) credit hours toward your eligible program during the Fall 2020 semester. All eligibility criteria must be meet before approval for the Laptop Loan Program.
2. Do you need an instructor or advisor referral?
No, you can apply directly. Click on the link above once it is made available. Be sure to provide all information requested and that you meet all eligibility requirements.
3. Can I keep the Laptop for Spring 2021?
Yes, if you were approved and borrowed a laptop through the Laptop Loan Program for the Fall 2020 you can reapply for Spring 2021. More details will be posted for renewing your Laptop for Spring 2021 in October 2020.
4. If I borrow a laptop, when is due back?
Your borrowed laptop will be due back to the IT Service Desk beginning December 7th and no later than December 18th. You can turn in the laptop at any point in the semester before December 18th. If at any point you withdraw completely from Galveston College or you stop attending your courses, the borrowed laptop will be due back immediately.
5. I heard some colleges are giving away laptops. Is this laptop mine to keep?
No, this is a loan of college equipment. When you pick up the device you’ll sign a form stating you accept the valuation of the computer as we’ve assessed it, and that you will return the device on or
before the due date, in the same condition, or a hold will be placed on your account for the assessed value. We need these devices back to continue supporting students.
6. Does it cost anything to borrow the laptop through the Laptop Loan Program?
Checking out a laptop is a free service for Galveston College students registered for Fall 2020 classes. It will be handled like borrowed equipment from Galveston College, and students will receive notices for due dates, extensions and other information to their Whitecaps email. The only costs that would be incurred is if the device is lost, stolen, damaged or otherwise not returned in its original state.
7. How long can I use the borrowed laptop?
You can use the mobile device for the current semester and with the option to renew your application for the Spring 2021. More details will be posted for renewing your Laptop for Spring 2021 in October 2020.
8. Who do I call if I need technical support?
Please contact the Galveston College IT Service Desk (R-120) during normal operating hours for hardware related issues with your loaner laptop. Limited support is available for troubleshooting applications necessary for classwork, labs, and examinations. Please check with your instructor first for information for your class.
If it is determined that the laptop’s hardware is in need of repair and it is not the fault of the user due to accident, misuse, or otherwise, the student must arrange a time with the IT Service Desk to bring it in for repair, either onsite or through the manufacturer. You can contact them at email@example.com or 409-944-1352.
9. What if I need internet access?
At this time there is no hardware resources provided by Galveston College to provide internet access to students in need. Please check the Other Resources tab for community information on internet access.