Frequently Asked Questions


Why do I have software on my laptop that I do not use?

The University does not purchase software licenses for every program on each laptop. Instead UW-Stout purchases what is called concurrent licensing, which means the University purchases a certain number of licenses and a license is only in use while a student is actively using the software. For example, if the University purchased 250 licenses of Minitab, a maximum of 250 student users could use the software at the same time. All applications are provided to all students to aid with the management of the program and to give every undergraduate access to all technology tools.


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Why can't I pick my laptop type?

The computer platform (Apple or HP) is determined by the faculty leadership of each major with input from their industry council to best prepare students for the workplace. The eStout program administers that academic decision and therefor does not allow students to choose their own platform. There are no exceptions.

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Why don't students with Macs pay more?

Although on average Apples do cost more than most Windows-based laptops, unlike in a retail environment, the disparity in cost to UW-Stout is typically not significant. One year the cost of the Apple laptops was actually slightly less than the new business-class HPs. The operational overhead to administer nominally different rates would increase the cost to the program to students.

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How are students involved with the eStout program?

Students were the driving force in the creation of the eStout program and continue to participate in surveys and focus groups. The data gathered guides changes in the program. The Laptop Transfer Program was actually a result of student input. Much of the technical support for the eStout program is performed by students employed by ASK5000.

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Why do students with double-majors, one being a Windows-based major and the other an Apple major, receive HPs?

The decision to provide "mixed-major" students with Windows-based laptops was an academic decision made when the eStout program was implemented. As with platform determination, the eStout program merely administers that academic decision without exception.

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Can students buy used laptops?

No. At the end of a laptop's two-year lease cycle the laptops are returned to the vendor. The University does not wish to become a computer vendor.

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Can students who are leaving Stout prior to graduation buy their assigned laptop?

No. Laptops are not available for purchase and must be returned by the last day of the last enrolled semester.

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Do graduates get to keep a laptop?

An eStout student officially graduating may have an opportunity to receive a laptop at no additional cost upon graduation; this is called the Laptop Transfer Program. Students who have participated in the eStout Program with a minimum of 32 qualifying credits and are officially graduating from UW-Stout may be eligible to participate in the program. The University transfers ownership of the laptop to the graduate.

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Do graduates who participate in the Laptop Transfer Program receive support from ASK5000 after graduation?

ASK5000 does not support laptops after transfer/graduation. The University transfers ownership of the laptop to the graduate. Some computers have warranty remaining and support services may be available from the manufacturer.

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Do I have to participate in the eStout program? Can I opt out?

Participation in the eStout program is not optional. If registered for eStout credits the per-credit fee will be assessed. Opting not to pick up the laptop will not result in removal of the per-credit fee. This policy is similar to the textbook policy.

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Will I always receive a brand-new computer?

Some students may receive a year-old computer. This is not a new practice; Stout strives to use existing inventory in order to be fiscally and environmentally responsible. Year-old computers are in excellent condition and priority is given to students graduating in the next 9 – 16 months to minimize the inconvenience of swapping for the transfer program and ensuring they have ample access to support resources prior to participating in the Laptop Transfer Program.

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