Microsoft Office & Other Software for Students


Pacific University does not provide Microsoft Office for students. However, there are low cost or free ways students can obtain Office or Office alternatives. 

SPSS is available to students via Apporto virtual desktops, and other software may possibly be reimbursed by academic departments.

Student Need for Office

Many Pacific University students will be required by their instructors to do activities that involve the manipulation of document, spreadsheet or presentation files that are in Microsoft Office formats. In some cases, Microsoft Office alternatives (see next section) that can open Microsoft Office format files and save in (or export to) those formats are sufficient. However, there may be instances where students are required to use features that are only available in Microsoft Office applications.

Office Alternatives

The following applications can open and save in (or export to) Microsoft Office formats:

  • Google Apps (Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides) which are available via to all students logged in to Google with their Pacific accounts.
  • Open Office, a free open-source software suite.
  • Apple iWork (Pages, Numbers, Keynote) which is free on all Apple computers running currently supported operating systems.

Computing Labs

Microsoft Office is available in all UIS-supported computing labs and common area computers.

Office 365 Web for Students

Microsoft offers a free version of Office 365 for anyone with a .edu email address. Pacific University students who sign up can get free access to the web based versions of Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Pacific students cannot, however, get free access to the downloaded (non-web-based) versions of these apps.  Pacific University does not control accounts and does not have the ability to make changes to those accounts.

Purchasing Office

Multiple vendors offer Office purchases or subscriptions. UIS recommends:

  • Microsoft 365 Personal subscriptions.
  • Office Standalone License from ThinkEDU.
    • This license is a one time purchase and download. If your change computers or your computer dies you will have to purchase it again.
    • As of 3/2024 the version available at thinkedu is Office 2021 it will go end of life October 2026 and no longer receive security updates.

University Funding for Student Office

Typically, Pacific University does not pay for students to have Microsoft Office. The one exception is where students need Office for a research project they are doing. In those cases, academic departments may choose to reimburse students for their personal purchase of Microsoft Office. Students are responsible for making the purchase and maintaining licenses or subscriptions (the University never purchases Office on behalf of a student). For more information, see your academic or research advisor.

Other Software

UIS makes SPSS available for students via Apporto.  No other software has been made available.  In some situations academic departments may reimburse students for the purchase of software as described for Office above.  In these cases, the budget authority authorizing the purchase should seek out a note of approval from UIS to satisfy technology purchasing pre-approval requirements before reimbursing the student..


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Article ID: 126951
Mon 2/1/21 11:48 AM
Wed 3/27/24 11:05 AM