Journalism CreativityKit FAQ

What is CreativityKit?

CreativityKit logo

CreativityKit is a curriculum innovation program for all incoming undergraduate journalism students that provides the software technologies to prepare students for their career while allowing them to use their own personal equipment. This ensures equal access to the storytelling tools they need. CreativityKits facilitate collaborative journalism so classes may embed themselves within communities and capture the news as they witness it, for an immersive, real-world learning experience. It also instills students with the mindset and skillset to succeed in the all-mobile, all-the-time demands of journalism today. CreativityKits, coupled with an iOS device (iPhone or iPad), let students develop their mobile technology expertise from the essentials of backgrounding, writing, and newsgathering, to extensive, multi-dimensional, and engaging production and distribution of their work.

Journalism happens within newsrooms and without them. Emerson journalism students will work with this “mobile newsroom” setup from their first course to their last.

Why have the CreativityKit program?

The CreativityKit standardizes and improves access to technology for everyone. Students get familiar with a digital journalism workflow so that more classroom time is devoted to learning how to gather news, telling compelling stories, and receiving meaningful critiques of their work. As journalistic storytelling becomes more complex and enriched, from serial podcasts to data-driven visuals and immersive and interactive experiences, Emerson journalism keeps pace thanks to the CreativityKit program. Feedback from students using the CreativityKit shows strong satisfaction with how they enhance classroom learning and improve their technical skills in journalism reporting and producing assignments.

What is the cost of CreativityKit?


First-year journalism students will be required to bring a laptop computer to campus that meets the specifications set forth by the Journalism faculty.

Our current standard is:

MacBook Air M2, 13 inch, eight-core CPU, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD -- currently $999

For students looking for a more robust system with a fan, improved speakers and microphone, and a faster processor, we recommend:

MacBook Pro M2, 13 inch, eight-core CPU, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD -- currently $1199

These systems will be available for purchase at a discounted rate through the Apple store via this link, under 'Recommended Systems':

Purchase Macbook Pro CreativityKit on the Apple Store

These computer specifications have enough power that it is expected to last all four years at Emerson. If you already have an Apple laptop, it may or may not be powerful enough to handle the software you will be using in the journalism program, so its specifications should be reviewed. If you are unfamiliar with your laptop specifications, you can reach out to the Emerson Help Desk to provide information to IT to review its capabilities.

Hardware/iOS Device

It is strongly recommended that Journalism students arrive on campus with an iOS device (iPhone or iPad). The Journalism curriculum is designed with the assumption that students will capture media, edit, and publish on their own iOS mobile device. Non-iOS device workflows will not be supported by the curriculum. Students who do not have an iOS device will have access to borrow from a limited pool of iPhones available through the Equipment Distribution Center.


Emerson College subsidizes all CreativityKit software. Final Cut Pro and Adobe Creative Cloud will be available for your MacBook upon matriculation to Emerson College. The software packages provided by the College will defray more than $1,000 in costs.

What if I need financial assistance to purchase the CreativityKit laptop?

Applicants must demonstrate financial need as determined by the Office of Financial Aid. Log into your Admission Portal to submit your application. Students starting their program in the fall should submit their application by 8/21/2023. Students starting their program in the spring should submit their application by 1/4/2024.

I already have a laptop, but it does not meet these specifications. Why can't I use it?

The hardware above is specified to properly run and load applications that are required in the Journalism curriculum for all four years of the program. Standardizing the Journalism program’s laptops and software makes it easier to collaborate on projects and send students learning materials. This permits the Journalism Department to raise classroom expectations to help students reach a higher level of achievement at graduation, and minimizes the need for technical troubleshooting across multiple platforms.

Are journalism students required to participate in the CreativityKit program?

Yes. By standardizing technology, the journalism program is able to progressively provide students with more challenging assignments in digital newsgathering and storytelling. All new journalism majors are required to adopt the CreativityKit program in order to successfully complete the program.

What happens when I graduate or if I change my major?

When you graduate or if you elect to leave the journalism program, IT administrators will remotely remove any software licenses that were provided by Emerson College.

More questions?

Please contact Journalism Department Administrative Associate to the Chair, Christopher Wilson at

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