IT FAQs for Incoming Students

1.  What electronic resources will be available or provided to students?

  • Students will have access to a wireless network that is available for personal device usage with certain restrictions acknowledged within a user agreement.
  • Students enrolled in CISA, ES,CIC-JPME (iCollege), and NWC will be provided with an NDU-sponsored Google Cloud email account and associated cloud services for the duration of their academic program. This account will serve as their primary means of communicating with NDU faculty and staff.
  • Students enrolled in the JFSC JCWS program will be provided with an NDU-sponsored GC accounts.  Students enrolled in the JFSC JAWS program will be provided with an NDU-sponsored outlook account.  This account will serve as their primary means of communicating with NDU faculty and staff.
  • Students will receive a Blackboard account with username and password allowing access to this online learning management system for the content supplied by each course.
  • Students will be enabled for secure network access with a DoD sponsored CAC. There will be various NDU CAC enabled workstations available to do work with CAC enabled websites, such as Defense Travel Online (DTS). You will be able to obtain a DoD sponsored CAC on campus if you will not possess one on arrival.
  • The libraries host .mil cafés for access to restricted .mil domains.
  • Student rooms will be supplied with a wireless printer for use to those assigned to that student room.
  • Campus and school DIA representatives can assist students who need to obtain access to a classified computing environment.

2. How will students access the NDU wireless network?

·       Students should bring their personal computing device (laptop, tablet, iPad, etc.) on their first day of class. You can refer to your college welcome packet for further information about the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy.  As part of the registration process you will have to read and sign the NDU wireless user agreement.  You also need to be ‘current’ in your Information Assurance (IA) Training - see Question 4 below.

3. How will students print?

·       All course readings that do not come from an issued textbook are provided in electronic format for students to read on their personal computing devices. NDU uses Adobe PDF formats where appropriate to ensure compatibility across the multiple platforms students bring to class. Our intention is to deliver the curriculum to students in a paperless environment; however, student printers are available in designated areas in each college. Resources for printers are limited; we ask that students use them prudently throughout the year.  

4. Does a wireless, DoD network still require an Information Assurance (IA) training certificate?

·       Yes, the completion of Information Assurance (IA) training by all students is critical to maintaining the security posture of NDU systems.  Students will not be required to retake training during the Academic Year if they provide proof of (any) valid Cyber Awareness e.g., DISA, JKO, State Dept., etc.  Those not satisfying this requirement prior to their arrival will need to access the Joint Knowledge Online training website and take the JS-US024 Department of Defense (DoD) Cyber Awareness Challenge and print out the completion certificate and have it with them during in-processing.  DoD CAC holders who have taken the DoD Cyber Awareness Challenge course through JKO are requested to bring a copy of their completion certificate to in-processing for our records.  Since all users are required to keep their training current during their time at NDU, if you are enrolled in a year-long program, ensure that your training completion date is 1 June 2015 or later to ensure you won’t have to complete it again during your time of enrollment. 

·         Note:  All International Students at CISA, ES and NWC should NOT take this training until after their arrival at National Defense University (ISMO).

  • For DoD CAC holders: Go to, log in using your CAC, and read and accept the DoD warning. On the page that appears after login, click on the tab for “Course Catalog” and enter "JS-US024" into the course number search box. When the course appears, select "Enroll."
  • For non-DoD CAC holders: Go to and read and accept the DoD warning. Look for the “First Time Student/No CAC" option under "Login Options," and select the option that applies to you:
    • I have a .MIL, .GOV, NPS.EDU, DODEA.EDU or NDU.EDU address: Selecting this option will open your email client to send an email from your authorized email account address (i.e. your .mil, .GOV, NPS.EDU or DODEA.EDU address) The email is sent to the JKO help desk, and they should respond back to you with a username and password that will allow you to login to the training site and access the training.
    • I do NOT have a .MIL, .GOV or NDU.EDU address or I am a Multinational Student: Selecting this option will open your email client and open a template for you to fill in and “send” to your “government sponsor” for JKO access.  Your sponsor will then forward that email to JKO using their NDU.EDU email account, and JKO should respond back to you with a username and password that will allow you to login to the training site and access the training. Once you have logged in: on the page that appears after login, click on the tab for “Course Catalog” and type into the course number search box: JS-US024 and select “search.” Once the course appears, select “enroll.”

·       If for some reason you are unable to accomplish this training prior to your arrival, be advised that you will have sufficient time during the program’s first week (Week 0 – Orientation, Convocation, etc…) to complete this training and provide the required documentation to your college's Information Management Officer (IMO).  In case you lose your certificate or want to produce another document, the certificate, by default, is saved on JKO and you may access the system to retrieve this information.

5. Are all computers compatible with the NDU computing environment?

·       Students have exclusive control of their personal device features and type, but every device must be able to access and browse the Internet; receive, process and send email; read electronic books (mostly in PDF format); and create, edit and save documents, spreadsheets and presentations. Please be aware that devices bought in foreign countries may not work on the NDU wireless network. If you are living outside of the U.S., it is highly recommended that you wait to purchase one until you arrive at NDU and consult with your college’s Information Management Officer (IMO). Additionally, NDU cannot guarantee that devices provided by your agency will be compatible with the network, unless the student has full administrative rights to change and update the computer settings.

·       Many students rely on a tablet to “consume” information and a separate device to produce information (laptop/desktop) for their assignments. Many of our students this year have used iPads and Surface tablets with great success. Each college will provide support to register and connect your personal device to our Wi-Fi network, but please be aware that your device must run on a current operating system. For Mac users, as long as your  Macbook Air/Pro/mini is less than 6 years old, it should be running on OS-X, for iPad and Android users, the most current Operating Systems (OS) upgrades are typically free, and unless your device is “old” and won’t accept OS updates, you should be good to go. If you find that you can no longer update the OS on your device due to its age, it likely won’t connect to our network. For Windows users, operating system upgrades are usually not free so if your laptop is not running on Windows 7 or 8, you will have limited support at NDU in helping you overcome any barriers to connecting to the wireless network with your device.

·       Alert:  We have recently learned that some of our e-books (ebrary, Ebsco e-books, MyiLibrary, etc.) are NOT downloadable on devices with Window RT 8.* (many Surface tablets and other laptops).  It will not allow Adobe Digital Editions to be downloaded and installed on the device, hence they cannot download and read e-books.

6. What software will my computer require to complete my assignments?

·       Student devices should be loaded with document, spreadsheet and presentation software, such as Microsoft Office, Open Office or iWork. Students are eligible to participate in the Microsoft Office Home Use Program to obtain a student copy of the Microsoft Office Suite. Students should also protect their personal devices with anti-virus software such as McAfee or AVG Anti-Virus Free. MacAfee may be available to students at no- or low-cost through their home agency or military service, and is available via iTunes or Android Marketplace.

7. Should I buy Microsoft Office Suite/Microsoft Office Mac for my device?

·       NDU participates in the Microsoft Home Use Program, which allows students to purchase the most recent Microsoft Office Suite (Windows or Mac) for their computer at a deep discount (~$10.00). Students have exclusive control over what software to use, but their device must be able to create, edit and save documents, spreadsheets and presentations. In order to register for the Home Use program, you must have a valid NDU email address that you will receive during your in-processing along with instructions on how to access the NDU Microsoft Home Use Program.  FYI - The full MS Office Suite may not be designed to load or work correctly on some devices (such as Windows 8.*).  Before students buy, they should consult the manufacturer or the documentation to see if FULL MS office will work on their device.