The Student Laptop Initiative aims to put in place the policies and support services required to enable UQ’s aspirations for high-value classroom experiences, using technologies where coordinators choose to take advantage of them.

This initiative is endorsed by the DVC(A) and led by Dr Sam McKenzie (ITaLI) in collaboration with ITS and the Library.

Project overview

The goal is for all university students to own a laptop so that they are able to study anywhere, anytime. Small screen WiFi-enabled portable devices, such as tablets or smartphones, can be used for some learning activities. However, the same devices are not ideal for writing significant pieces of assessment (e.g. 1000+ words) or completing digital exams, due to small screens, keyboards and security constraints. Therefore, PC and Mac laptops are required to accommodate the full range of learning experiences across a student’s degree.

By removing the barriers of software and laptop ownership, we provide UQ staff and students the flexibility they need to become more resilient and adapt to future changes that affect the way we learn and teach.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do students access the software that my course requires?

UQ is changing the way it provides software to staff and students. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted that students and staff need to be able to access software, from their own laptops, in any location and that it is no longer suitable to require them to access them through on-campus computer labs.

The UQ Digital Workspace (UQDW) provides approved students and staff access to software applications or full desktop environments using any device from any location with an Internet connection.

As teaching staff, please ensure that the software you use in your course is available to both staff and students anywhere, anytime. If you are unsure, please review the list and submit a request to UQDW.

 

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What if students don’t have a suitable laptop?

All UQ students should have access to a laptop. The UQ Student Laptop Scheme is designed to assist all current students who require a study laptop on a permanent basis. If students don’t have access to a suitable device for their studies, they can:

  • get a short-term laptop loan (ranging from one week to a whole semester), and/or
  • apply to receive a brand new free laptop from UQ.

As teaching staff, please ensure that your students are aware of the UQ Student Laptop Scheme by providing them with the information at the start of the semester.

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Considering that most students already own a laptop, why do we need a policy for all students to have one?

To provide an equitable experience for all students, students need access to their own, individual/personal laptop to complete their studies. For instance, students cannot share a device to sit a digital exam.

By implementing a policy whereby students are required to own a laptop, UQ can communicate these requirements when students enrol in their program of study and provide support structures for students who are experiencing hardship.

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  Resources

For students:

For students and staff:

Contact

All enquiries about the Student Laptop Initiative can be addressed to Dr Sam McKenzie: