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Ah, the universal question... What do you NEED it to do... That's a question only you and your professors and course requirements in the future can answer.

Overall, I don't think you'll have a problem. IMO, your biggest hurdle may be a professor who insists on submittals in either .doc or .docx format. I've yet to stumble on to a word processor that is 100% compatible with MS Word in this respect. The same probably applies to Excel spreadsheets, and I know it happens with PowerPoint. A friend just tried to open a PowerPoint doc using both the latest version of Impress from Libre Office and Open Office, and it was a royal pain.

But as someone mentioned, try to stay away from complex documents as they will be more problematic.

My suggestion would be to submit your papers in PDF format. While LO, OO, MS Office, and lots of programs offer PDF file export, not all programs have that export feature. But on the Mac Mini you say you will be using, it doesn't matter. When you are ready to create the final document for submission to your professors, from ANY program, select Print. In the lower left corner of the dialog box is a PDF button. Click on it, and you'll be able to create and store a PDF on your hard drive, and anyone with a PDF reader can read and annotate (mark it up electronically) the file and return it to you. Then, on the Mini, simply open the file in Preview and you should be off to the races.

FYI, the iWorks apps are not a "default". They are not included with Macs when you buy the computer, they are purchased through the App Store. If you were to save and submit a file in Pages file format, your professor would also need to have Pages in order to read it . However, all three programs will save a document in MS Office file formats. Be aware that you will need to know what features are supported between the programs. Keynote has features that are unsupported in PowerPoint, and I'm sure the reverse is true.

Pages 09 does have comments, I don't know about the current version. I've read in the past in a Mac magazine that Apple removed some features from the current iWorks offerings.

The fact that OU has the software installed implies their professors (at least a portion of them) have no problems with files created with the Mini. Ask your professor. :-)

Mac OS X 10.8.5
Firefox 36.0.4
Thunderbird 31.5
"My brain is like lightning, a quick flash
     and it's gone!"

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