Faculty with appointments longer than one year, and full- and part-time staff positions whose work require computers, are provided with a new computer every four years. Other faculty and staff may be provided with second-tier computers.
Faculty may choose between Macintosh and Windows, laptops and desktops. Other employees will receive Windows desktop computers by default unless their work requires an alternative. Alternative arrangements will be made in consultation with the employee's supervisor.
Faculty are encouraged to use startup funds for the purchase of their first computer. IT will cover the cost of the computer at replacement, which typically takes place in three to four years.
Emeriti who are granted use of office space may retain a college-owned computer with the normal replacement cycle while they continue to have an office space on campus. Emeriti who are not granted office space should discuss their computing needs with IT Support Services. Phone and walk-in support is available for emeriti who need assistance using services provided by Amherst College.
Features and Benefits
An IT Support Services staff member will set up and install your computer in your office. If your computer is in the four year replacement cycle, the old computer must be retrieved and will be reused for other College needs.
Before installation of a replacement computer, you must back up your current data files. In addition to the operating system, the computer will come preinstalled with most of the applications software you will need to do your work. Other software is available for download or distribution over the campus network.
Faculty and staff offices are wired for Ethernet network access and telephone access. Faculty offices are also wired for cable TV access. Because your office will probably have a single Ethernet connection, you may need to make special arrangements if you have more than one computer that needs a wired or Ethernet network connection. Many library carrels are also wired for Ethernet and phone service.
Wireless a.k.a. Wi-Fi access is available throughout the campus. If you experience wireless issues in your office please contact the IT Help Desk and report the problem so we can investigate it for you.
Faculty and staff members normally use department-based network printers and/or Multi-Function Devices (MFDs) which can copy, print, scan and fax as applicable. Public printers are also available to students, faculty and staff in the Seeley Mudd computing center, the library and other locations. Faculty members may request a USB connected desktop printer at department expense.
Printer repair service differs from department to department. Contact your Academic Department Coordinator or administrative computing liason to find out how to get your printer repaired.
Amherst provides access to a variety of standard software. Support for specialized software is generally limited and shared with the academic departments using the software.
If you would like any additional software available to your students, please contact Academic Technology Services. The student lab configurations are usually established well in advance of the beginning of the semester.
Viruses and Malware
Anti-malware/antivirus software will come pre-installed on your Amherst computer. Our current anti-malware software that we support is called ESET. It is your responsibility to make sure that the your Amherst computer has anti-malware software installed and working. If you suspect a virus infection or malare problem, immediately turn off your computer (if you can) and contact the IT Help Desk. See our Virus & Malware: Essential Security information about ESET software, how to install it and how it works, and for detailed computer security information.
To get help with any computer or network issue, please call the IT Help Desk at x2526 or email helpdesk at amherst.edu. The person on the Help Desk will make sure your problem is routed to the appropriate IT staff member for resolution.