Engineering Workstations (EWS)



The majority of instructional computer labs within the Grainger College of Engineering are managed and maintained by Engineering IT. Lab management includes the management and provisioning of hardware, software and printing services. This currently includes more than 1,450 workstations in 109 locations.

Within this area, there are two basic types of labs: the traditional Engineering WorkStations (EWS) labs that are open for general use/class instruction; and departmental instructional labs, where use is limited to one or more particular classes.


This document focuses on general use EWS labs. For specific locations covered see: Lab Hours and Locations


The following are the primary features of EWS Labs:

  • High-performance workstations with 3D graphics acceleration and dual monitors.
  • Diverse array of Engineering-specific software packages along with common everyday applications.
  • Consistent user experience (storage, printing, software) across multiple lab locations.
  • Reliable instructional environment ready for teaching.
  • Prompt and consistent patching/maintenance of workstations.
  • Lab workstation replacement on a four-year cycle.
  • Consulting for instructors to evaluate software and hardware needs.
  • Some labs available 24/7 to students during Fall & Spring semesters excluding University Holidays
  • Labs can be reserved for course/RSO use.

Available to

Login access to instructional labs is restricted to registered students within the Grainger College of Engineering and non-engineering students taking Engineering courses, as well as Grainger College faculty and staff.

Labs are supported for undergraduate instruction only, research use of EWS labs is not supported, or permitted by many software licenses.

Service Hours

Requests will receive a response within one business day, Monday through Friday, 8:30am to 5:00pm, excluding University holidays. 

Support Contacts

Submit a Help Request
Time Critical Support:  217-333-1313


For the most part, Engineering IT instructional labs are a service funded by the Engineering Surcharge fee paid by Engineering students. As such, EWS labs are open for use by anyone listed in the “available to” section of this document, free of charge.

Special, non-standard hardware and software requests are funded by the requesting department.

Service Terms

Users of this service agree to the following:

  • Labs adhere to nightly and weekly maintenance windows, as defined by our EWS Policies.
  • Engineering IT reserves a WEEKLY major patch window every Monday morning between midnight and 5am for scheduled patching and a reboot.
  • Workstations are re-imaged as needed (minimum annually) to install new software or fix bugs.
  • Engineering IT reserves the right to refuse support on hardware (including peripherals) or software that is significantly past end-of-life.
  • Additional EWS lab policies are located on the EWS Policies page.

New Service Requests

Grainger College of Engineering instructors and staff may reserve labs for instructional purposes by visiting the Engineering Workstations page.

Requestors are asked to view the availability of a space through the Reservation Calendar and then submit a Reservation Request.

Instructors that would like to have software installed in a lab should submit a Software Request.

For general issues and troubleshooting requests, please submit a Help Request

Please note that Engineering IT typically does not fund specific software requests for a given class. For more information, please see our Software Purchase Consultation details. Software installations (including testing and deployment) require a minimum time frame of two weeks, but may take more depending on time of year, complexity of the software requested, and workload.

General Service Inquiries

Elaine Robbins
Assistant Director for Instructional Services

Related Services

Subscribers to this service may be interested in these additional services:

For a broader view of instructional-related IT support offerings from Engineering IT and on campus, please contact our Instructional Technology Facilitator, Rob Bennett.


Software Purchase Consultation details
Engineering Workstations page (includes software request form)
EWS Policies Page
EWS Lab Hours and Locations