The logo and text that reads Office 365 are on the left-hand side. The right-hand side contains an image of a tablet.

Getting Started with Office 365

This page will guide you through the basics for your mail, calendar, and contacts in Office 365. The system has been updated with a new design, but it still has features and functionality that you may have used with other web-based email.

Note: Office 365 uses pop-up windows so please be sure that your browser allows pop-ups.

  • For videos and tutorials to help you get started with Office 365, please click here.
  • For guides on setting up Office 365 on Android, iOS, or Windows phone, please click here.
Login to Office 365

Go to and click the blue “Login to Office 365” button, or from the Queens College homepage ( click on Login to… on the top right hand corner of the page and then click on Student email.

The screencap of the login screen for Office 365. The sign in portion is visible. It has a textbox to enter your username and password.

Type your complete email address and password. Your new email address will be your CUNYfirst Username followed by and your password is your CUNYfirst password.

Note: All usernames in CUNYfirst follow this pattern: Firstname.LastnameXX, where XX are the last two digits of your CUNYfirst ID. Example:

If you want to be able to close your browser window and remain logged in to Office 365 until you sign out, click “Keep me signed in”. For security purposes, it is recommended that you use “Keep me signed in” only on private computers, and never on public or shared computers.

Click on the Sign in button.

Notifications, Navigation, and Settings

Office 365 starts in the Outlook tab for your email

A screencap of the inbox inside an Office365 account. The left-hand side has a sidebar with options such as inbox, sent items, drafts. The right-hand side has an email inside the inbox.

At the top of Office 365, you’ll find a set of tabs that will take you to the different tools of your Office 365 account.

Click on the different tabs to switch to other areas of Outlook Web App.

A closeup screencap of all the tools on your Office 365 account. They read Calendar, People, Tasks, Newsfeed, OneDrive.

A screencap of the placeholder vector image of a person. It is located at the top right-hand side of the previous screencap. Use this area to change your personal information and sign out of your account.


A screencap of the placeholder image of a gear. It is located next to the vector image of a person on the right-hand side. Use this area to change settings and options.


Create a new message by clicking on the new mail icon.

Folders will be on the left hand side of your screen. The folder list includes the folders in your mailbox and Favorites. It may include other folders, such as archive folders.

You can hide this pane by clicking the chevron icon at the top.

You can expand and collapse folders in this view by clicking the triangle icons next to the folder names.

Search Window
Type what you want to search for here, such as the name of a person you want to find messages from, or text that you want to search for to find a particular message.

A screencap close-up of the search bar.

A list of messages in your Inbox or the current folder is in the center column. Each entry in the list view has additional information, such as how many messages there are in a conversation and how many are unread, or if there is an attachment, flag, or category associated with any messages in the conversation.

When a conversation is selected, you can delete it, add a flag, or add a category by clicking the icons. At the top of the list view are filters that you can click to quickly find messages that are unread, that include your name in the To or the Cc line, or that have been flagged. In addition to the filters, you’ll see the name of the folder you’re viewing and the view that you’ve selected.

The reading pane is on the right side of the screen, where the conversation that you’ve selected is displayed. You can respond to any message in the conversation by clicking the links at the top of the message.

Open an item in a separate window
By default, you read and create items in Office 365 either in the reading pane, or in a window that overlays the main window. For most items, to open them in a separate window, simply double-click the item in the List pane.

To open a message that you’re reading in a separate window, click the extended menu icon and select open in separate window.

For more extensive tutorials on email, please visit Microsoft’s Learning Center.

Click on the Calendar tab to open your calendar.

Create a new event by clicking new event. An event can be an appointment, a meeting, or an all-day event.

A closeup screencap of the calendar.

Use the mini calendar to navigate from one date to another. Shading will show you what days you are currently viewing and darker shading marks the current date.

A closeup screencap of the “My Calendars” navigation.

You can view more than one calendar at a time. This section lets you add other people’s calendars and select which to display.

A closeup screencap of navigation that has the following text links: day, work week, week, month. Below it the words “share” and “print” are written and aligned to the right-hand side. Select the view you want, and share or print your calendar.

For more extensive tutorials on using the Office 365 calendar, please visit Microsoft’s Learning Center.

This is where your contacts are stored. From here, you can find, create, and edit your contacts. Also, you can search for contacts in your organization’s directory.

Create a new contact by clicking new contact.

A screencap with the following links that are all placed in one column. My Contacts is the first section with “Contacts” underneath. The second section is “Directory” with “All Rooms, All Users, All Distribution Lists, All Contacts, Offline Global Address List” underneath.


All the places you can find contact information.

Search People

Type a person’s name here to search for them in your contacts and in your organization’s directory.

Screencap of the search bar.

The list of contacts for the current directory is in the center column. The contact card for the selected person is on the right side pane.

Click the icons to send a message or create a meeting request for the person displayed. A small screencap of two icons. One of the icons is an envelope in a circle and the other is a calendar in a circle.

Changing Your Office 365 Password

To change or reset your Office 365 password, follow the instructions below.

  1. Go to
  2. Click on the Change Password link.
  3. Enter your User ID or your Empl ID, your old password, and your new password. Click OK.

Note: If you forgot your User ID and your Empl ID, then try to proceed
as a “First Time User.” This will not create a new account, but will
simply regenerate your previous account.
Passwords Must Be:
– Between 8 and 12 characters long
– Contain at least 1 upper-case letter
– Have at least one number (1, 2, 3, etc.) or special character (&, %, !)
– Cannot be one of the last 4 passwords you’ve used
Remember that your Office 365 Password is an identical copy of your CUNYfirst Password.

If after following above instructions correctly you cannot login to Office 365 with your NEW Office 365 password, try to login with your OLD Office 365 password, which is your OLD CUNYfirst password. If unsuccessful, try to login with your NEW Office 365 password at later time.

If you need further assistance, contact the Helpdesk at 718-997-4444 or


OneDrive is cloud based storage and access to the web based Office 365 suite.

For more information click on the link provided on-screen after clicking on OneDrive.

An image of a screencap that reads “Welcome to OneDrive @ CUNY, the place to store, sync, and share your work. Documents are private until shared. Learn more here. Dismiss”.

Click on new to create a new file in your preferred application.

A screencap of the options when you click “new” in OneDrive.

Installing Office on Your Desktop

You can use your Office 365 account to install Office on up to FIVE devices (PCs, Macs and mobile devices).

To start the install click the Settings gear and then Office 365 settings.

On the left hand side click on Software.

For more information on installation requirements and help click on the link at the bottom of the Office 365 screen that reads Review System Requirements.

Click on Install.

This will now install the latest version of Office on your device.