Monday, August 2, 2010

Start the Semester Prepared…and Activate Your CougarMail

Whether you are a new or returning student to SCC this semester, make sure you are prepared for the first day of class. Over the summer, the college updated operating system software and Microsoft Office software in all classrooms and labs on campus. We are now running Windows 7 and Microsoft Office 2010 campus wide. If you are taking courses that involve this software, you will want to be prepared. For instance, all of the Microcomputer Applications courses and individual Office application courses will be using Office 2010. If you want to be able to do homework at home, you will need to purchase the 2010 software. If you are not able to do that, there are open labs in the Tech Building, Social Science Building, and Library.

The best deal for the Windows 7 and Office 2010 software is at http://www.ultimatesteal.com/. This site is for students only, so you will need to use your CougarMail address (yourID@my.stchas.edu or any .edu address). If you haven’t set that up yet, it is well worth your time to do so. At this site, you can purchase the Windows 7 upgrade for just $29.99 and the Office 2010 Professional software for $79.95. These purchases are digital downloads; if you want a DVD backup of the software, you will pay just a little extra. Either way, you will want to back up the software in case you need to reinstall. As a reference, the Windows 7 upgrade is $199.99 and Office 2010 Professional is $499.99 at Office Depot. The version is very important, especially if you are taking Microcomputer Applications or any of the individual Office software courses. If you buy the Home and Student or Home and Business versions of Office 2010, you will not get Access. This is a common issue in the Microcomputer Applications course – students do not buy the correct version of Office and are caught off-guard when it comes time to cover the Access chapters. Without the software, you will need to complete homework for those four weeks on campus or somewhere you can use Access 2010.

Another perk of your CougarMail address is access to a 25 gig SkyDrive and Office Live. This is convenient because the SkyDrive is the equivalent of carrying 8 to 10 flash drives; but you do not have to keep up with all of those, worry about leaving them in another computer, or dropping them on the parking lot on the way to class. With Office Live you also have access to the basic features of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint online (along with OneNote). These limited features are not enough to get by without buying the Office 2010 software if, again, you are taking Microcomputer Applications or any of the individual Office application courses; but it is still a handy tool for starting documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. You can put the finishing touches on them when you get to your own computer or one of the open labs. There is even a SkyDrive option under Save As in Office 2010, so it makes using this resource even easier. And the best part…there is no charge for any of this. You just need to activate your CougarMail.

Here are a few tutorials for using Office Live, the SkyDrive, and a link to help for setting up your SCC CougarMail.





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