Welcome to Iowa State!
As a new student, it’s hard to be successful without the right tools and technology. This webpage will guide you through a list of technology tasks to complete (your Tech-list). Completing these tasks will ensure that your technology is set-up properly and securely, so you don’t encounter issues logging into your Iowa State accounts. Be sure to complete steps 1-3 of your Tech-list before Student Orientation. Though family and peers are welcome to assist, we recommend completing these steps yourself, so you start getting comfortable with Iowa State systems and processes - like the Okta application dashboard and multifactor authentication.
If you run into challenges completing your Tech-list, don’t hesitate to contact Iowa State’s best resource for technology service and support - the IT Solution Center. The IT Solution Center is here to help all Cyclones, even those who have not yet arrived on campus. You can contact the IT Solution Center by calling 515-294-4000, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or visiting them in person at Parks Library on campus.
1. Register (set up) your Net-ID
What is a Network-ID (Net-ID)?
Most simply, a Network-ID (Net-ID in short) is the group of characters before the "@" sign of your Iowa State email account. For example, a student named Alex Doe might possess the ISU email address "email@example.com," and the Net-ID "alexdoe."
Why is your Net-ID important?
Your Net-ID is important because it serves as your unique identifier for Iowa State accounts. In fact, many ISU accounts to which students have free access are automated to recognize ISU Net-IDs as accepted login credentials.
How to register (set up) your Net-ID
In order to obtain an ISU Net-ID, you must have a University ID number, issued from the university. First, go to https://asw.iastate.edu. Then click on “Need to register for a Net-ID" under with the box labeled "Register." Fill in your required information, including your ISU card number. Record your Net-ID and password in a safe location, so you do not forget these credentials. Note, it will take a few days to process your Net-ID.
2. Access your Okta dashboard
What is Okta?
Okta is Iowa State's centralized identity and application dashboard. It is the "hub" of most all login activity. When Iowa State users log-in to Okta, they can access a vast collection of other account applications - without having to input their login credentials again.
Why is Okta important?
Okta is important because it allows you to log-in to your apps quickly and securely. Some of the applications available to Iowa State students through Okta include the Microsoft Office online, Webex video conferencing, OneApp (for apply for scholarships), Cybox and more.
How to access and set up your Okta dashboard
3. Activate your Multifactor Authentication
What is multifactor authentication (MFA)?
Multifactor Authentication (MFA) is a way to protect your Iowa State login that requires knowing more than just your password. After inputting your password, you are prompted to complete a second login step.
Why is multifactor authentication important?
Multifactor authentication is important because it provides better protection against phishing in case you get tricked into putting your password into a malicious site. You are also better protected against password reuse, meaning if you use the same passwords for multiple sites and accounts, hackers can no longer easily break into your primary email. Enabling MFA also allows you to reset your password by yourself, without having to contact IT staff for help.
How to activate your multifactor authentication
- To activate MFA, go to login.iastate.edu and click on the "Activate Multifactor Authentication" tile. Read the information about MFA and click "Activate" at the bottom, which will log you out. Log back in and follow the prompts to set up your preferred verification method, to determine what else besides your password you will input for a secure login. Your verification options are:
- Okta Verify Mobile App (A push notification to your smart phone, see instructions here)
- Google Authenticator Mobile App (A rotating code from an app on your smart phone)
- Text Message Code (A code via SMS)
- Voice Call (Landline or cell phone)
- Yubikey (hardware security token, that can be purchased from the ISU bookstore)
- Click on "Setup" for the specific type of verification method you want to enable and follow the instructions. We recommend that you set up at least two verification methods for flexibility. As this is your first time logging in, you may also be asked to provide a secondary e-mail address or a phone number, for self-service password resets.
4. Log into your AccessPlus account through Okta
What is AccessPlus?
AccessPlus is Iowa State's platform for accessing your important and confidential university information. AccessPlus is separate from Okta; in fact, AccessPlus is available as an application you can pin to your Okta dashboard.
Why is AccessPlus important?
- AccessPlus is important because it contains some of your most vital university information and offers a wide range of services pertaining to your enrollment. Through AccessPlus, you can:
- Manage your CyCash account
- View and pay your university bill ("U-bill") online
- Register for classes
- View class schedule
- Perform actions related to Financial Aid
- Receive ISU alerts related to activity on campus
- And more
How to log into your AccessPlus account through Okta
- To login to AccessPlus, you must first choose a login method. The preferred login method for students, faculty, and staff is their ISU Net-ID. University ID may be used; a Social Security number login is available, but discouraged.
- Once you have selected your preferred Login Method, enter the corresponding Login ID and password, and click the Login button.
5. Log into your CyMail account through Okta
What is CyMail?
CyMail is the name of Iowa State's email service. Students are automatically granted a CyMail account at no cost when enrolling in the university. Your Net-ID compromises the first section of your CyMail address. For example: Student Alex Doe's Net-ID is "alexdoe" and their email address is "firstname.lastname@example.org".
Why is CyMail important?
CyMail is important because it is your primary source of contact for university information. You will receive emails from professors, the office of financial aid, campus community groups, and even the President's office. Google Account services are also included with your CyMail, including Google Drive, Google Photos, Google Maps, and more.
How to access CyMail through Okta