Iowa State University

ITInformation Technology

Students Get Office 365 ProPlus for Free

This news item expired June 2, 2014. It may contain out-of-date information.

Some of the world's most popular productivity software is now available to ISU students for free. Office 365 is a collection of Microsoft enterprise-level tools, all hosted in the cloud. Office 365 ProPlus is a way to provide students access to this latest Office software.

Michael Lohrbach, Senior Systems Analyst in IT Services: Systems & Operations, said that the lack of a subscription fee is possible due to previous contractual agreements with Microsoft.

Through this program, users will be able to install software on up to five devices of their choice. Windows, Mac, and even mobile devices will support the subscription.

In October, Microsoft approached ITS with this offer "kind of out of the blue," according to Lohrbach. Microsoft started the program in early December, ITS jumped on the opportunity.

"We wanted to do the legwork to be ready to move forward with it if we desired. The potential financial savings to campus seemed to be large. That, along with the idea of students being able to have more software on more computers was one of the biggest driving factors," Lohrbach said.

Office 365 ProPlus for Students is an add-on for Office 365, but setup is relatively familiar. Students can log in to Office 365, see their ProPlus license, and download the latest version of Office (currently 2013). Previous versions of the software, like Office 2010, are also available for download.

While free to all registered Iowa State students, the benefits of the ProPlus program will be severed when an individual leaves the university. It is the understanding of ITS that the software will continue to function in a read only mode until the user opts to purchase a license or personal subscription. Should a new version of Office come out when the user is still a student, upgrading to that version will be free.