O.2 What technology is used?

O.2 What technology is used?

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Technical Requirements for Online Courses

Technical Requirements for Online Courses

Recommended Technical Requirements for "Frustration Free" Computing

To review minimum technical requirements for individual statistical software packages, please visit the technical support pages of the individual vendors. See Statistical Software page.


Operating System

Windows 10
Mac OS 10.11 (El Capitan) or higher

Note: While the course management system, interactive online conferencing tools, links to course notes and special example materials can all be accessed using either a PC or a Mac, Minitab and SAS are both PC products only. For courses where submitted work or examples primarily involve Minitab or SAS, students are strongly recommended to have access to a PC with this software.

Processor Intel i3 or equivalent; 2GHz or higher
Memory 2 GB of RAM or higher
Hard Drive Space 2 GB free disk space

Chrome is the preferred browser for students in the program to use.

Check Canvas's Which browsers does Canvas support? page to review the requirements for accessing the full range of the Canvas Course Management System features.

Or, check the Canvas Computer Specifications if your course is in Canvas.

Cookies and JavaScript must be enabled. Pop-up blockers should be configured to permit new windows from Penn State web sites.

Acrobat Reader [Download from Adobe]

Internet Connection Broadband (cable or DSL) connection required. At least 2 Mbps download speed and 2 Mbps upload is required for exams proctored through Examity—test internet speed at www.speedtest.net
Printer Access to graphics-capable (inkjet or laser printer)
DVD-ROM May be required for installation of SAS
Sound Card / Speakers Required (a headset with microphone recommended - see below)
Monitor/Video Card

15" monitor; Capable of at least 1024 X 768 resolution, 1,000:1 contrast ratio

Webcam and Microphone Built-in or external webcam and microphone required for courses that have exams proctored through Examity. Also, some courses (STAT 507, STAT 557, STAT 580, STAT 581) may involve students making use of the video conferencing software.  For these courses, a headset with a microphone is required. (a video camera is not required).

Some Courses (STAT 414, STAT 415, STAT 502, and others) require students to have immediate access to a scanner or copy machine that will copy written work involving complex formulas into .pdf files that can be sent in an email as attachments or uploaded into Canvas assignments.  STAT 414 would require such access due to the amount of complex formulation students would be involved in authoring. 

Please Note: Immediate local access to a printer/scanner is essential when students are taking proctored exams in STAT 414 and STAT 415 through Examity.

Please Note: Many office copy machines and some printers have this capability built-in. 

Courses with Proctored Exams

For courses using Examity you must meet the following technical requirements.

Examity® System Requirements

  • You must take the exam on a desktop computer or laptop (tablets, Chromebook and cell phones do not meet our requirements).
  • Desktop computer or laptop (tablets, Chromebook and cell phones do not meet our requirements)
  • Webcam and microphone (built-in or external).
  • Connection to network with sufficient internet speed: at least 2 Mbps download speed and 2 Mbps upload. Hot spots are not recommended. Test internet speed at https://www.speedtest.net/
  • Browser with pop-up blocker disabled

Use this Examity System Check to determine if your computer is ready:

Examity Computer Readiness Check

Reaching Examity® 24/7 Support

  • Phone: 855-392-6489
  • Email: support@examity.com
  • Live Chat: Click on the live chat link located at the top and bottom of your Examity® portal.

Take a Screen Capture

Take a Screen Capture

In the online environment, being able to capture graphs, images and equations is an important skills for assignments, discussion forums and even troubleshooting issue with your instructor to the help desk.

Most new operating systems come equipped with some sore of screen capture tool. Here are the basic ones.

Windows Windows

Using Keyboard

  • PrtScn: Another option is to use the print screen ("PrtScn") function which will copy your entire screen, then paste into Word and crop down to only the necessary part of the screen.
  • SHIFT + S: (Windows 10 only)

Using built-in tool

  • Snipping Tool: Computers with Windows Vista and later will have a snipping tool. This will allow you select a portion of your screen. Then, you can copy it and paste it.

macOS macOS

Using Keyboard

  • + shift + 4 : This will allow you to select a portion of your screen. By default, this saves your screenshot as a graphic

Using Built-in tool

  • Grab: This tool will allow you to capture, the entire screen or just a selection.

Once you have your image you can then upload it to Canvas or add it to your document.

Uploading an image to a Canvas Forum or Quiz

As a student in our online STAT courses you may have to upload an image to a discussion, quiz or assignment in Canvas. Canvas provides a way to upload directly from their rich content editor.

View the step-by-step procedures in the Canvas documentation.

How do I embed images from Canvas into the rich content editor as a student?

Working with Images in Documents

Cropping a picture in Word

There are times where you have to crop your screenshot to only show certain parts of the image in your document.

How to Crop an Image in Word (Microsoft Support Site)

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