MS365 For Education

MS365 (previously known as office365) is a collection of apps and services provided by Microsoft for education and business purposes. Many apps that we use on a regular basis (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint) are a part of MS365, but other apps such as Teams, OneNote, Class Notebook, SharePoint, Sway, Forms, and Flipgrid are resources to enhance and support teaching and learning(Teams has its own page).


Microsoft in Canvas

Using One Drive with Canvas

Video Tutorials – One Drive

Microsoft apps featured here are FREE for faculty, staff, and students at Loyalist College through the ms365 account. If you would like to explore courses and learning pathways for many of these apps, go to the Microsoft Educator Centre and select Higher Education.

LinkedIn Learning also has an endless number of training videos for most of these apps.

Need a free copy of MS365?

Log into to access the web version.

Select the button below to access your account portal and select Install Office.

Microsoft365 by Function and Features

File Management 101

File management (storage, organization, and sharing) is one of the most frustrating and confusing areas of our work, and remote learning and work has magnified some of the challenges in this area.

There are 4 apps we will be covering in this area. OneDrive, SharePoint, Teams, and OneNote.

Web Browser vs Downloaded app

When having to choose between web browser version and the downloaded app, I will go with the downloaded app almost every time.

OneNote, OneDrive, and Teams all have downloadable apps that you can add to your PC or Mac. The benefit of the downloaded app is that it will save information if you lose internet connection, it is easier to use, fewer steps to access it, and it usually has more features and options. The exceptions to using the app are

  • occasionally MS will provide a feature that is available on the web version first
  • having issues with the app due to updates or bug, so the web version is a handy back up
  • I only need to use it for a minute and don’t have the app downloaded
Which app/program do I want to use?

There are a few questions you need to ask before deciding which one is what you need. Honestly, they all work together as best friends, and ideally, you would use all of them for their intended use.

  1. What is the material that I am storing, and for what purpose?
  2. Who needs to access/edit, for how long, and what reasons?
  3. What level of flexibility do I need?

A way to visualize these apps

Picture an office with filing cabinets, bookshelves, personal desks, and worktables.

  • OneNote is your Personal Filing cabinet
  • SharePoint is your department/team filing Cabinet
  • OneNote is a binder or notebook that is on a bookshelf
  • Teams is the office that can hold all of these and be a place to work.

To break down these apps down a bit more, select the specific app to find out more about its functionality.

Note: MS Teams uses both SharePoint, OneDrive to save and store files, and it hosts a location for OneDrive, SharePoint, and OneNote notebooks. Teams has its own dedicated page you can visit for more information on basic use or view below for information related to file management.

OneDrive - Your Personal Filing Cabinet

Use OneDrive to  safely store, organize, and share your personal work files

To store draft copies or originals for safe keeping.

(For department or college-wide files, please use SharePoint rather than OneDrive)

It works similarly to the college’s M-Drive or P-Drive, except much easier to access and use. Once set up, your files are available on any device (Mobile, iMac, PC) that you can connect to the internet. You can decide to have a local copy of your files kept downloaded on your device or to keep a copy on the cloud that can be accessed at any time. You can also add a folder that has been shared with you to your own folder library for easy access. OneDrive is where you can find a file or folder that has been shared with your or that you have shared with others.

Sharing Files Students can upload a OneDrive link for their assignment rather than a large file to the LMS. You can also use OneDrive Shared Links for assignment you want students to access. Make sure to set up sharing permissions first.

You can also use OneDrive from any web browser, so there no need to download it on a device that is shared or not often used for work.

OneDrive Video Training

SharePoint - Your Team/Department/College-wide Shared Filing Cabinet

Use SharePoint file Libraries to safely store, organize, and share work files within a Team, your department, committee, or the College.

(For personal work files, please use OneDrive rather than SharePoint)

SharePoint is almost identical for file storage and sharing as OneDrive, but it is made for work teams rather than individuals. It also works similarly to the college’s M-Drive or P-Drive, except much easier to access and use. Once set up, your files are available on any device (Mobile, Mac/PC) that you can connect to the internet. You can decide to have a local copy of your files kept downloaded on your device or to keep a copy on the cloud that can be accessed at any time.

SharePoint has can also provide an intranet site for programs. This is usually connected to a Team account and can be used to enhance the Teams experience and usage.

OneNote - Your Personal or Shared Notebook/Binder

OneNote is a unique app that uses OneDrive’s file storage system to allow users to create content and store copies of files with that content.

OneNote is a virtual binder that has divider tabs and pages that can be worked on independently or collaboratively.

For Teaching practices, OneNote’s Class Notebook acts as an all-in-one learning platform or environment that allows for extensive sharing, collaboration, and assessment opportunities as well providing students with access to all of there files in one location. This can integrate into many LMS platforms and all MS Team channels.

MS Teams - Your Virtual Office or Workspace

Use MS Teams File feature to safely store, organize, and share work files within a Team, your department, committee, or the College.

MS Teams uses SharePoint and OneDrive for its file management systems, but it can also provide a common location to add OneDrive and other files storage applications tabs so that a Classroom, Professional Learning Committee, Department, or Organization can access and work synchronously without leaving the workspace. (See OneDrive and SharePoint for more details about these apps)

Upload and find files in Team Channels

Chat and Share Files in Teams 

Load files for the Class Team

Share a file with the students in the Class Team

Pin a file as a tab in the Class Team

Create folders for the Class Team

OneNote Class Notebook in Teams

For training on File Storage in MS Team, check out this LinkedIn Learning course: Microsoft Teams: Working with Files (Sign in through MyLoyalist for free access to LinkedIn Learning)

MS Teams

MS Teams Icon and Link to ResourcesMS Teams is a virtual work environment that has real word applications for both the vocational and the educational environment.

Here are some uses for Teams in the Teaching and Assessment area

  • Learning Environment with industry functionality
  • Video Conferencing for Synchronous Classes
  • Assessment and Grade Centre for projects that need to be outside of the LMS (working with Industry Partners in real time, cross program application etc)
  • Office Hours through Chat
  • Group work in Channels or Breakout Rooms
  • You let us know how you are using it!

As a constantly improving and expanding tool, the MS Teams of last year is not the Teams of tomorrow. Check in occasionally to see the new functions and options available to you. Because MS Teams has so many use cases, we have given it its own page on top of the resources provided below. The Icon Link at the top of this section will take you to the main page. The supports and resources are extensive, so explore and enjoy!

MS Forms - Surveys, Quizzes, and Tests

MS Forms MS Forms Icon and Link is like Survey Monkey, Poll Everywhere, Polly and Google Forms and other survey features; however, it is also a powerful tool for Formative and Summative assessments. Because it is built directly into Loyalist’s suite of Office365 apps, it is a more secure tool for our students and our college.

Forms can be for anyone (in and outside Loyalist), those with emails, or specific users. Many release and control options are also available.

There are many options including

  • multiple choice/true & false
  • Text, (long and Short)
  • Rating
  • Date
  • Ranking
  • Likert
  • File upload
  • Net Promoter Score
  • Section

Branching is available for some question types.

You can use Forms inside many platforms including

MS Word - For just about everything...

Microsoft Word Icon and LinkMicrosoft Word is likely the most used app in educational settings. As will all of our MS365 products, it is free for ALL faculty, staff and students. It is available on PC, MAC, IOS, and android as an app or through a web-browser. The online Word is nearly at the same functionality as the download app.

Check out the Intro to Word webpage to explore Accessibility, Collaboration, Researching, etc. as well as Videos, Training, and Supports for the educational setting.

Check out the Training session in LinkedIn Learning

Remember to sign into LinkedIn Learning through

MS Excel

Microsoft Excel Icon and LinkMS Excel is one of the most powerful tools in the MS365 suite.

It can be used in any learning experience that requires organization and sorting of information that is data text or other. Excel has grown from a digital spreadsheet to a program that creates pivot charts, graphs, forms, sign-up sheets, and more. Over the past few years, the functionality has expanded, and Excel now works with other apps such as Word and PowerPoint.

Quick Overview – Excel in Education LinkedIn Learning 3m 31s

Deep Dive –Excel Essential Training (Office 365/Microsoft 365) 2h 17m

PowerPoint - Design, Present, Record and More

MS PowerPoint PowerPoint Icon and Link to Resource Page is familiar to most of you as the basic electronic version of Chalk and Talk or a lecture tool.  Although it is a great resource for lectures, it is also now a very interactive and dynamic tool that can help you make your classes engaging, or as an Asynchronous learning tool as well.

It now can have built in quizzes, interactive polling tools, and “Voice and Picture Over” for prerecorded classes. It can also be opened much like a word document to create interactive smart art diagrams or be used to house media. Student can now use the Presenter Coach to practice their presentations and get feedback on the pacing, pitch, filler words etc.

On the PowerPoint help & learning page, you can explore all these features and learn how to use them.

Go to the MS Educators PowerPoint Resource Page or the selections below from LinkedIn for more training and resources.

LinkedIn Learning

Quick Overview – PowerPoint in Education 6m 51s

Deep Dive – PowerPoint Essential Training (Office 365/Microsoft 365) -2h 37m

OneNote Class Notebook - One-Notebook to Rule them All

OneNote Icon and Link to resources OneNote is an extremely versatile app that can act as a scrapbook, binder, notebook, or canvas. It can use excel functions for math as well as the integrated math solver, MS Forms, and tables. It is the best inking platform in Microsoft, and it seamlessly synchronizes between devices in real time.

OneNote in the Classroom

OneNote has some special functions for use in the classroom including

  • Private workbook for each student (as the teacher, you can access them all in one place)
  • a collaboration space for group and entire class activities
  • access to a read-only resource library
  • a teacher space to store your resources

As a faculty, you can send out pages to every student or groups of students so that they can each have their own copy. It is the virtual version of hand-outs.

Other interesting features

Tracking Progress: The Class Notebook allows for live monitoring of the student’s work as they complete assignments in their own workbook or in the collaboration space for group work. You can see what each student is writing, and their colour coded initials show up beside what they have done so that even in group work areas, you can still see each student’s individual contribution. There is a constant tracking of work so that you can go back to see if there have been alterations or to monitor progress.

Inking and Math: For those who have a device with a stylus, you can use OneNote as a canvas for mark ups, sketches, math equations and so on. It can convert your handwriting, shapes, and equations into text and objects to clean them up. For courses with math and equations, OneNote allows you to complete math functions within the app as well as provide step by step breakdown of the math equation. There is also a recording feature that allows students to play back each individual step so that they can follow your process.

Training and Resources

LinkedIn Learning

Quick Overview – OneNote for Educators 1m 27s

Quick Overview – Class Notebook Feature 6m 1s

Deep Dive = OneNote for Windows 10 Essentials 1h 23m

Microsoft Resources – Get startequickly

SWAY - Create Webpage for ePortfolio, Presentations, Interaction and more

Microsoft Sway IconMicrosoft Sway is a unique and highly overlooked product that allows faculty and students to create work that will present in a webpage style layout. It can be a created from existing content such as a Word Document, or a PowerPoint, or be fully created within the Sway environment. Starting from a document that you are familiar with but would like to add some visual aspects and interactive components might be a good place to start with SWAY rather than starting from an empty template.

Sway is a great tool for presenting a Resume and Cover Letter, Portfolio, Business Report, or anything else where you want a visually engaging element to what you are presenting.

Click the SWAY icon to take you to the MS Educators resource page for SWAY.

If you would like some Training on SWAY, you can do that through MS Educators or LinkedIn Learning

Sway Essential Training LinkedIn Learning

Sway course in the Microsoft Educator Center.

Flipgrid - Simple, free video discussions to make learning fun, fulfilling, and empowering.

Flipgrid Getting Started

Flipgrid is a video discussion and engagement tool that is quite new to the Microsoft app collection. For people who remember, I think of it like speaker’s corner on City TV. The student has the ability to produce their own video submission as well as comment on others if you choose. It can be moderated and kept private in cases where comments and sharing are not part of the learning objectives.  It can provide an opportunity for expanding the universal design in our courses by providing this as an alternative to written discussion, test or assignment.

Ways to use Flipgrid in the Classroom

  • Elevator Pitch – You have a chance to introduce yourself to the hiring manager of the company you want to work for.
  • Discussion/debates – Have student respond to a topic or each other
  • Do a test verbal – Have the option for students to complete all or parts of their test verbally
  • Explain your answer – Have student explain answers from a test or assignment to get a deeper learning experience (helps to reduce academic integrity issues as well)
  • Present your project – Have student present a project and have student give feedback or rate them.
  • Present your portfolio – Have student present a physical or virtual portfolio as part of career or placement preparation.
  • What you liked best – Have students give feedback on an experience or topic. This can be private or shared.

Other uses – Student Video Presentation, Icebreakers, Posting Instructions, demonstrations, reflections etc.

Limits – Any video length up to 10 minutes max. Works on all computer platforms and mobile devices that have internet access.

Process: Mobile – Download app and sign in. PC/Mac – Sign in with username. Follow the instructions.

Flipgrid can be embedded into the LMS, sent as a link (email/announcement), or used through MS Teams.

Trainings from the Microsoft Educator Center

Introduction to Flipgrid

Engage and Amplify with Flipgrid

Discover the Flipgrid Discovery Library

Beyond the basics with Flipgrid

Hearing Related

Explore the various Tools built into MS365 that are related to Hearing.

Vision Related

Explore the various Tools built into MS365 that are related to Vision.

Neurodiversity Related

Explore the various Tools built into MS365 that are related to Neurodiversity.

Mobility Related

Explore the various Tools built into MS365 that are related to Mobility.

Mental Health Related

Explore the various Tools built into MS365 that are related to Mental Health.

Immersive Reader +

Immersive Reader Link 🎓 Check out this free course to learn about Immersive Reader and how it can be used in classrooms and schools:

Immersive Reader is Microsoft’s tool for assisting with language comprehension and accessibility. It is integrated into multiple MS365 apps, including Word, OneNote, Outlook, Office Lens, Microsoft Teams, Forms, Flipgrid, Minecraft Education Edition and the Edge browser. It provides all students and faculty the opportunity to customize their experience through the various features such as Read Aloud, Dictation, Focus Mode, Grammar/Editor, and much more. It assists with Vision, Hearing, ESL, Dyslexia, ADHD, understanding sentence structure, Grammar/spelling checker and translation.

Many of these features will be cover separately on this webpage (Dictate, Editor, Translate, Read Aloud, Read Aloud Math, Focus, Cortana) , but these all work together to be part of the Immersive Reader Platform.

✅ Introduction to Immersive Reader:

✅ Immersive Reader support:

✅ More Immersive Reader video content:

✅ Microsoft Education webinars: ✅ Immersive Reader interactive guides:…

✅ Take Immersive Reader into your class:…

✅ Get connected with Microsoft Store trainers for Remote Learning Support:

MS Read Aloud

Read Aloud LinkRead Aloud is the most available feature in Immersive Reader. It is now available in almost all of Microsoft’s main products as well as integrated into the MS Edge web browser.

Captions and Translations

Microsoft has built in Translations and Captions options in many of its apps.

For presenting, PowerPoint has Live Captions and Translations available. You can also add Closed Captions or Subtitles to media within PowerPoint

For Live Classes, Teams also has Live Captions as well as Transcripts for Meeting Recordings through Stream.


Microsoft TranslatorMicrosoft Translator is available as feature in Immersive Reader, in the MS Edge browser, as an interactive web service, and as an app on android and IOS Devices. It is now available in many of Microsoft’s main products by default.


Microsoft Dictate Icon and LinkMicrosoft Dictate is available as feature in Immersive Reader, and as its own tab in MS Word, Outlook, OneNote, and PowerPoint. The is the main Speach-to-Text tool for Microsoft products. It provides students and faculty the opportunity to complete their work verbally rather than by typing.

Need more? Feel free to reach out to the service desk or CLLAE for more support.