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Office 365 educational license comparison

Office 365 Educational License Comparison: A1 vs A3 and A5

Microsoft has become the foundation of most educational institutions. Communication and scheduling are handled through Outlook. Documents are created and sent in Word format. Presentations are developed and presented through PowerPoint. The list goes on and on—Microsoft Office is essential for academics. Every student, teacher, and staff member relies on Microsoft software to complete daily tasks. In order to support this, educational institutions need to effectively navigate the available Microsoft licenses and software packages. This Office 365 Educational License Comparison provides a guide for Microsoft Educational Licensing, comparing the various options so that educational organizations can find the best fit.

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Price Comparison for Office 365 Educational and Academic Plans

License Student Cost / Month Faculty Cost / Month
Office 365 A1 Free Free
Office 365 A3 $2.50 $3.25
Office 365 A5 $6.00 $8.00

Microsoft Educational Licensing Options

Microsoft educational licensing allows educational institutions to provide access to Microsoft products and services at a more affordable cost. When an organization agrees to buy in volume under the agreement guidelines, they get a flexible method for purchasing the products and services they need—a tailor-made tech solution. With several different licensing options available, institutions should base their decision both on their size and how they would like to acquire the services.

Small To Midsize Academic Organizational Licenses

Open License For Academic

This license is convenient for many organizations because it allows the institution to get all of the software and cloud services they need in a single transaction. Under the agreement, the organization can choose the licenses they want and purchase them through an authorized reseller of their choice.

  • Offerings: Transactional cloud services, on-premises software
  • License Term: Two years
  • Coverage: As-needed
  • Minimum Commitment: Five licenses/L&SA, 1 user subscription license, or Azure pay-as-you-go
  • Organization Size: 5-499 on-premises software users; 1+ cloud services user
  • Licenses, Software, And Services Offered: Cloud services user subscription license, on-premises software license, Software Assurance (optional)
  • Price Level Determination: Single price level
  • Payment Options: Upfront payment (1-2 years)

Open Value Subscription For Education Solutions

This agreement comes at a lower up-front cost than the Open License option, while still offering similar benefits. OVS, though, provides the subscription-based licensing to allow for a few additional features for students within the academic institution.

  • Offerings: Cloud, on-premises software
  • License Term: 1 or 3 years
  • Coverage: Organization-wide
  • Minimum Commitment: At least 1 Desktop Platform Product or cloud services license for 5+ students or FTE
  • Organization Size: 5-999 students or FTEs
  • Licenses, Software, And Services Offered: Cloud services user subscription license, on-premises software license, non-perpetual license for on-premises software, Software Assurance (included)
  • Price Level Determination: Based on student or FTE employee count
  • Payment Options: Upfront payment (1-3 years)

Midsize To Large Academic Organizational Licenses

Enrollment For Education Solutions

This license offers institutions both stability and flexibility. They get guaranteed coverage of the Education Platform Products they use with the ability to annually update their user count. Through this agreement, organizations also gain the freedom to order different/new products when they need them, enhanced student benefits, and the option of free licensing.

  • Offerings: Commitment-based cloud services
  • License Term: 1 or 3 years
  • Coverage: Organization-wide
  • Minimum Commitment: 1+ Education Platform Product user subscription license for 1000+ users
  • Organization Size: 1,000+ users or students
  • Licenses, Software, And Services Offered: Cloud services user subscription license, on-premises software license, non-perpetual license for on-premises software, Software Assurance (included with some on-premises products)
  • Price Level Determination: Based on user count
  • Payment Options: Upfront payment (1 to 3 years)

Select Plus For Academic

This license provides the most freedom for larger institutions. It allows individual departments and affiliates to obtain the software that they need, rather than having to license the technology for the entire organization. Licenses can also be acquired at any point during the coverage. This agreement also offers simplicity by covering the entire organization under a single account and leaving the agreement term open.

  • Offerings: Transactional on-premises software
  • License Term: Non-expiring
  • Coverage: As needed
  • Minimum Commitment: 500 points/product pool/year
  • Organization Size: 250+ users
  • Licenses, Software, And Services Offered: On-premises software license, Software Assurance (optional)
  • Price Level Determination: Single price level
  • Payment Options: Upfront 1 to 3 years

Small To Large Academic Organizational Licenses

Microsoft Cloud Agreement

This pay-as-you-go agreement allows organizations to get the cloud services that they need through a Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider. There are a variety of different options to fit every institution’s requirements. Further, the provider will be able to assist with the entire process, from purchasing to deployment to use.

  • Offerings: Transactional cloud services
  • License Term: No required term
  • Coverage: As needed
  • Minimum Commitment: 1 user subscription license or Azure pay-as-you-go
  • Organization Size: 1+ user
  • Licenses, Software, And Services Offered: Cloud services user subscription license
  • Price Level Determination: CSP-set price
  • Payment Options: Upfront payment (monthly)

Office 365 educational license comparison

Microsoft Office 365 For Education

Office 365 for public, private, and charter schools is free. The only requirement is proof that the school is accredited as an academic institution. However, while many of the tools in the software are free, there are some more advanced Office 365 versions that come at a price—some schools may want to consider the benefits these versions could bring.

Office 365 A1

Price

  • Students: Free
  • Faculty/Staff: Free

Features

This version of Office 365 is free. Included in this package are information protection, compliance tools, email, Microsoft Teams hub for class collaboration, and video conferencing. It also comes with:

  • Outlook (online only)
  • Word (online only)
  • Excel (online only)
  • PowerPoint (online only)
  • OneNote
  • Exchange
  • OneDrive
  • SharePoint
  • Skype for Business
  • Teams
  • Sway
  • Forms
  • Stream
  • Flow
  • PowerApps
  • School Data Sync

Office 365 A3

Price

  • Students: $2.50/user/month
  • Faculty/Staff: $3.25/user/month

Features

A3 comes with all of the A1 features, as well as desktop versions of the Office applications, and more tools for security and management. A3 also includes:

  • Publisher
  • Microsoft Access
  • Bookings

Office 365 A5

Price

  • Students: $6.00/user/month
  • Faculty/Staff: $8.00/user/month

Features

A5 offers everything in A3, plus more intensive security management, additional analytics tools (through Power BI), and advanced compliance.

Learn More about Microsoft Educational Licensing

Agile IT has vast experience in Office 365 in both the public and private sector. We reduce costs and increase value for schools seeking to move to a modern classroom. We also have comprehensive experience in making cloud migrations easy, having moved over 1,500,000 accounts to the cloud.

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