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Software Recommendations & Site Licenses

things to consider when purchasing software

Site License
A site license means that the software may be used on any BC owned computer without cost to you. Boston College has site licenses for a number of software titles.  Please refer to the software list.

Reduced Pricing & Aggregation
In some cases, software costs can actually be reduced by purchasing additional copies. For example, the cost of nine licenses for a particular title is around $720.00 or $80.00 each. But the cost of ten licenses is only $576.00 or $57.60 each. This price difference occurs because the tenth unit reaches a quantity level where the price per unit drops. To continue this example, further per unit price drops occur at 25, 50, 100, 250, 500 and 1000 licenses. This type of pricing exists with many software applications.

In other cases, the University's Licensing Agreements dictate a cost that does not change based on individual or even group orders. For example, Boston College receives the highest level of discount for Adobe products because of the school's buying history. Therefore, the aggregation has been done at the university level and the price will not be affected by the quantity of individual orders. Other examples of contracted pricing include some Microsoft titles such as Project and Visio.

The Licensing staff ( can work with you to coordinate purchases so that you and BC can obtain the best pricing. Please contact them about software that you want to purchase or may be interested in buying in the future so that they can try to aggregate software purchases.

Multiple Installations
Some software vendors permit software to be installed only on computers owned by BC, and some license agreements permit use on home computers as well. Please read and understand the license agreement, especially where it can be installed, before purchasing software.

Maintenance Agreements
Maintenance agreements are often an option when buying software that is more than a few hundred dollars. Maintenance agreements are usually less than 25% the purchase price. The main reason to purchase a maintenance agreement is that software upgrades are sent as they are released, and thus there is a savings as opposed to buying the software each time a new version is released.

Support is often a part of a maintenance agreement. Support allows you to ask the vendor questions about the use of the software.

Will your students need access too?

To request that software be installed on computers in O’Neill Library, email To request software for the Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE) classrooms, email ITS and the CTE work with faculty in the spring to purchase software to be installed for the following academic year. Additional requested software will be purchased if funds are available.

man with question markNeed help selecting software or hardware? 
An ITS staff member will work with you to determine which software or hardware best fits your needs. Use the consultation request form.