Microsoft 365 Accounts for Students

November 9, 2021

The Microsoft 365 for Students project is currently piloting with the Cockrell School of Engineering. During the pilot, the project team successfully created the new my.utexas.edu email subdomain and auto-provisioned 5000 student accounts. The foundational work completed by the team sets the stage for the upcoming academic year. The pilot will expand to additional colleges and units for the spring 2022 semester, and all students by summer of 2022. 

The University of Texas at Austin is excited to offer students a Microsoft 365 account. Currently, students are required to manually create an account using the Microsoft Web Portal to take advantage of these accounts and the suite of applications available in the Microsoft environment. To reduce this barrier to entry and provide access to Microsoft tools on day one, this project will allocate a Microsoft 365 account to all students before class instruction begins (by August 1st, 2022). Providing access to applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Exchange Online, Teams, and OneDrive will give students the tools needed to succeed in their academic careers at the university. 

Learn more about your Microsoft 365 account

Some of the benefits of Microsoft 365 for students include:  

  • Enhanced faculty/student and student/student collaboration: Most faculty are already using Microsoft 365 in some capacity and some have begun integrating these tools into their teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic. Students can also experience the positive impact that enhanced collaboration can have on student group work and official student organization work. 

  • Canvas/Teams integration:  Canvas and Microsoft have announced a partnership to develop an enhanced integration between the two platforms.  By onboarding students to Microsoft 365 and Teams now, students will have a more streamlined experience as these two platforms come together.  

  • Marketable skills: The ability to use the full power of Microsoft 365 alongside the Microsoft Office suite (the default productivity suite for most public and private sector employers) will help better prepare students for the technology skills required in the workforce.  

  • No Additional Cost Access to Microsoft 365: By claiming your Microsoft 365 account, students can access all of the Microsoft tools for no additional cost. This includes the online versions of these tools so students can log in and access their tools and files from any device.  

Goals

The primary success criteria for auto-provisioning student Microsoft 365 accounts will be:

  1. Successfully provision Microsoft 365 accounts for Engineering students in the Fall of 2021 

  1. Provide a management platform giving students the ability to identify and edit their Microsoft 365 accounts

  1. Establish policies and workflows including but not limited to account creation, decommission, and information barriers

  1. Develop an online resource hub for stakeholders to educate them on the service

  1. Create a recognized brand for Microsoft 365 accounts making it easy to identify

  1. Extend Pilot of Microsoft 365 accounts to additional colleges in Spring of 2022 

  1. Successfully provision Microsoft 365 accounts to all students during New Student Orientation for Fall of 2022

Timeline

The pilot begins with Cockrell School of Engineering in Fall 2021 and expands to other colleges and units through Spring of 2022. Launching campus-wide during New Student Orientation for Fall of 2022.