UMass Boston

Request a Computer

Need a computer? IT can help!

Please select the option below which best fits your need.

“I need to request a computer for a new hire”

New hires may be eligible for a university owned computer. Fill out this form to start that request process! 

Note, you will be asked to log in to submit the form. Click the blue "Use My School ID" button and enter your UMass Boston username and password.

Web form: New Hire Computer Request

“I need to purchase a computer through my own funds”

If you are purchasing a computer through your own funds, the Computer Lifecycle Policy requires less scrutiny on your purchase, and you can make the purchase yourself through BuyWays. This includes grant funding, RTF, Startup funds, or lab fees. This does not include your departmental GOF fund.

For purchases made with RTF, Startup funds, or lab fees, IT does a partial review to ensure that you are ordering a Dell computer, and if not, we must first collaborate on creating a support plan to offset the reduced support that IT can provide to other manufacturers. This support plan is encouraged but not required for grant purchases.

For all these purchases, including grants, we also have a few small requirements for how the purchase is made, described below.

The University's computer asset management inventory system can automatically import information about computers purchased through BuyWays so that all university-owned computers can be recorded properly. For this automatic importing to happen, your BuyWays requisition needs to be structured in a particular way.

For RTF and Startup purchases, IT will review the model you selected to evaluate what support our technicians can provide. IT has staff who are trained to support in hardware issues of Dell computers. If you need to purchase a device from another brand, there is less support that we can provide and a plan must be created to account for that. If your are in this situation, please contact to discuss your plans before submitting the Buyways requisition.

Three-step instructions for BuyWays Computer Purchases

NOTE: Please submit separate requisitions for each device type
  1. Commodity Code
    • Commodity Code should always be “Equipment - Information Technology (All)” on the primary IT Asset
    • For all other accessories, docks, warranties, etc. please use code “Computer Supplies”
  2. Accounting Code
    • The account key should always be – "Computer/Laptops/Tablets” for any IT asset that will be tagged with a UMass Boston Barcode.
    • For anything else like accessories, monitors, etc can use "IT Equipment"
  3. Cart Name
    • Follow this naming convention with four bits of info each separated by a " - " (space, dash, space)
      • An explanation of these placeholders is below.
    • DEVICE:
      • "LAPTOP" - for laptops
      • "TABLET" - for iPads and other tablets
      • "SERVER" - for servers
      • "COMPUTER" - for any other computer, including desktops, AIO, iMac, etc.
    • INC#:
      • The incident ticket number relevant to this purchase
      • If no ticket number, you can skip this field
      • Optional: any other note or description you want to add
      • It's helpful to list the end user of this computer here, if relevant
    • Two examples of correct cart names:
      • COMPUTER - INC0112358 - For John Doe
      • LAPTOP - ABC Grant Computer

If you have any questions about this, please send an email to and

“I need to have my current computer repaired/reimaged”

If your computer is damaged or has significant usability issues, we can help! The technicians in our IT Desktop Support team are expert troubleshooters and can make a big difference in your experience in using a computer for your job.

Note, you will be asked to log in to submit the form. Click the blue "Use My School ID" button and enter your UMass Boston username and password.

Web form: Computer Repair Request

“My current computer can’t be fixed and needs to be replaced”

If your computer is damaged beyond repair, and the technicians in our IT Desktop Support team can't fix it, they will recommend you request a Computer Replacement.

Note, you will be asked to log in to submit the form. Click the blue "Use My School ID" button and enter your UMass Boston username and password.

Web form: Computer Replacement Request

“I need a computer, but not for a reason listed above”

If you need to request a computer for a new hire or a grant, or if you have a current computer and need it repaired or replaced, please go back and select one of the other options above.

If you need to request a computer for some other reason, please fill out the form in the button bellow.

Note, you will be asked to log in to submit the form. Click the blue "Use My School ID" button and enter your UMass Boston username and password.

Web form: Other Computer Request

“I'm a student and need a computer”

Only UMass Boston employees are eligible for a computer through this Computer Request process. IT offers several ways for you to access a computer. Check out the Chromebook Loaner Program linked below, and also see additional options for you also listed on that page.

See options for student computers

“I need to purchase computer accessories”

Only university-owned computers (including desktops, laptops, and tablets) fall under the Computer Lifecycle policy and Computer Request process. Any other technology purchase can be made freely. This includes accessories like keyboard and mice, external monitors and docking dongles, etc. 

We can help advise you on the purchase of any accessories if you have questions, just as the IT Service Desk! The most common accessory question we get is about external monitors and docking dongles:

External Monitor

IT provides an external monitor with all desktop computers but not laptops. If you need an additional monitor, your department must buy it directly through Buyways.

Buying two monitors? You'll likely need a Docking Dongle too, see the section below.

If your department is looking to purchase an external monitor, IT recommends the Dell 27in USB-C Hub Monitor, model number P2722HE. This has Display Port & HDMI input, built-in speaker, adjustable height, swivel, tilt & pivot. This does not have a built-in web cam so that must be purchased separately.

Docking Dongle

Most laptops provided by IT don't need a dock or adapter to run an external monitor. Using the built-in ports, IT's laptops can support a dual-screen setup (one screen built into the laptop and the second being the external monitor). If you want a three-screen setup, you will need a docking dongle to support the two external monitors.

If your department is looking to purchase a dongle, here are IT's recommendations. For Apple computers: StarTech Docking station, model DK30CHHPD. For Windows computers, Dell Docking station, model WD19S 180W. Your Mac and Dell laptop must have the USB-C Port output for connecting to the Docking station, so confirm that before buying.

Please contact for any questions about this process.

If a new computer is needed, the UMB Computer Lifecycle Policy describes who is eligible for which category of computer, as summarized below.

Newly hired tenure-track faculty, and staff hired into newly created positions (ie, not replacing a previous employee) are eligible to receive a recently purchased computer from IT’s Standing Inventory, including the option of either a Standard Dell or Standard Mac. The specific models and specs for these computers are defined in the policy document Appendix.

Newly hired employees replacing previous employees, or other scenarios where a new computer is needed, are eligible to receive a repurposed computer from IT’s Standing Inventory.

Employees who work on campus full-time are eligible for a desktop computer, while employees who's jobs are approved for working remotely are eligible for a laptop.

For any other computer need, or for one of the above scenarios where the provided option is insufficient, an exception process exists to request an alternative. Exception processes require the department to document their unmet need and justify a proposed exception. Exception requests must be reviewed and approved by the department head, area vice chancellor, and the CIO. If the exception is to request a new purchase, the exception must also be approved by the Division of Administration and Finance. An exception will come out of a standard Computer Request, so please make whichever selection above seems to best fit your need, and discuss any alternate needs in the course of your consultation.

Inventory of Available Computers

At the Computer Request Consult, we will review what options are available to you based on your situation, which will come from one of four possible categories. If the category of computer available to you doesn't meet your need, we can collaborate on initiating an exception process to request one of these options as well.

View IT's Standing Inventory

When Requesting a computer, you have four options available:

  • New computers are a recently purchased, unused computer, which we maintain a supply of on-campus, as listed in the Appendix Section 5 of the Computer Lifecycle Policy
  • "New Old Stock" computers are a slightly older computer than what we would buy as a New Computer, but is still never used by another user.
  • "Repurposed" computers are devices which were previously in use by another user on campus, but have been turned back into IT for redistribution. Repurposed computers meet IT's Minimum Viable Computer Specifications as described in section 2.2 of the UMB Computer Lifecycle Policy, meaning they still have new enough hardware to run supported versions of their operating systems, and still getting security patches. These devices are thoroughly cleaned both physically and digitally before being redistributed.
  • An alternative to requesting a new computer from the options above, is to have IT Desktop Team renew your current computer, including possibly replacing lower speed or capacity parts with newer and more capable components. IT Staff are trained to repair computer difficulties, both hardware and software, and often can improve your experience in using your computer.

If your computer has usability problems, there are often many ways that a trained technician can greatly improve your experience in using it. Get in touch with us, describe the problem, and we'll do whatever we can to resolve your issues. Report difficulties with your computer to the IT Service Desk