Technical Requirements

Review this page before beginning your Gies College of Business online course. 


 In order to successfully complete an online course,  you should have the ability to:

  • Access your email account
  • Send and receive emails with attachments
  • Download and upload files
  • Install programs on your computer (Computers that you share with others, such as those in a library or computer lab, will typically not allow you to install software.)
  • Save files to your computer’s hard drive and retrieve them later
  • Perform a web search and use a web browser to navigate various websites


  • Internet Connection: All students must have access to a wired, high-speed network connection (DSL or cable). A wired connection is better than a wireless connection. For many online activities, a wireless connection will suffice — but you may need a wired connection to complete online tests and quizzes. This is especially important If you’re spending the semester in another country. 

Find out more at the Illinois Online Computer/Technical Requirements page. 


All online students are expected to have certain essential software.  This includes, but isn’t limited to:

  • Operating system (i.e., Windows, Mac OS)
  • Browser (Firefox and Safari work best with Compass)
  • Zoom 
  • Microsoft Office for Windows or Microsoft Office for Mac. Microsoft Office includes Microsoft Word and PowerPoint, which are essential for nearly all online courses. Excel may also be required for some courses.
  • Virtual Private Network: All students can access UIUC’s VPN, but this is especially important for study abroad and off-campus students. To install the VPN, see the VPN instruction page.

Some courses may require that students purchase additional software (such as Pearson’s MyLab or McGraw-Hill’s Connect) or install free software on their computers. Review your course syllabus for any unique software requirements.

For discounted software pricing, you may visit the University Webstore

Please note: It’s important to install updates and patches of all required software as soon as they are released. Using outdated software may keep you from fully participating in your online course. 


All online courses in Gies Business begin with an Online Orientation to familiarize students with the design of the course and the types of activities involved.  The Online Orientation requires completion of a few short activities and must be finalized prior to the first day of class.