Microsoft Licensing: Microsoft 365 Education A1, A3, or A5 License Overview


The University System of New Hampshire uses Microsoft solutions for mail, productivity, scheduling, business analysis, security, and much, much more. Microsoft 365 Education licenses are divided into three types: A1, A3, and A5. There are dozens of nuances among each license, but this article will call out some of the most notable differences.


What are the different license types?

The Microsoft 365 Education A1 license is the most basic license type. It grants access to Microsoft 365 Apps for Education (formerly Office 365) through your web browser. It includes an Exchange Mailbox with 50GB of storage, access to Teams, SharePoint Online, OneNote, and OneDrive.

The Microsoft 365 Education A3 license is like A1 but allows installation of Microsoft 365 Apps for Education on your workstation. These licenses grant a 100GB Exchange Mailbox and access to Microsoft Bookings for faculty and staff. This license also improves general account security in many ways behind-the-scenes.

Lastly, the main benefits of the Microsoft 365 Education A5 license are vastly improved security and compliance capabilities, most of which are behind-the-scenes for Enterprise Technology & Services system administrators and support staff. Examples include malware contact tracing, applying sensitive data labeling and encryption/sharing policies, and automated threat protection. More user-facing features include Teams dial-in conferencing, MyAnalytics which is used to augment work-life balance and task management, Power BI Pro, a powerful data visualization tool.

Microsoft has a full description of the Microsoft 365 Education A1, A3, and A5 licenses here:

How are licenses assigned?

Due to the terms of our license agreement, the University System of New Hampshire must assign Microsoft 365 Education A5 licenses to staff defined as "Education Qualified Users," while all other accounts were given the Microsoft 365 Education A1 license. Enterprise Technology & Services staff are currently provisioning licenses using employee roles and carefully watching and analyzing the impact.  Notably, faculty emeritus, sponsored users, and auxiliary accounts (pool, secondary, service) accounts were assigned Microsoft 365 Education A1 license. Certain adjunct positions may have been assigned this license as well.

Need Additional Help?

If you find you are unable to perform certain tasks due to your Microsoft 365 license, there are a few solutions available.


Article ID: 2439
Mon 9/28/20 4:33 PM
Wed 3/31/21 12:53 PM
Applicable Institution(s):
Granite State College (GSC)
Keene State College (KSC)
Plymouth State University (PSU)
University of New Hampshire (UNH)
USNH System Office