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Each Office 365 Group has a set of features and tools to make collaboration and communication more efficient and accessible. All Groups have the following features:

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The distribution-list aspect of Groups is a group email address, and all emails and Skype Instant Messages to the Group can be found in the Conversations tab. The Conversations list can be opened in a number of ways, but the easiest option is to access it from your personal inbox. Follow the steps below to access your Group emails.

  1. Log-in to your Office 365 account.
  2. Select the Outlook icon from your portal.

  3. When your inbox opens, locate the Groups folder in the left sidebar.

  4. Select the Group name to access its inbox.

  5. The Group page opens and the Conversations are displayed by default. Scroll through the list to view all emails to the Group and between all Group members.


Group members will receive Group emails and notifications in their personal inboxes if that option was selected when the group was created.


Each Office 365 Group has its own OneDrive account with up to 1 TB of cloud storage. This allows Group members to access, edit, and share documents easily. All members of the Group have the same access to the Group OneDrive, so all members can edit, upload, and share the documents located in the Group OneDrive.

It can be a little confusing the first time you try to access your Group files. This is because the University uses OneDrive for Business as its cloud storage system, but when you access your Group files the top of the page says “SharePoint." SharePoint Online is where all Office 365 Groups are housed; by using SharePoint Online, Office 365 Groups are integrated with other Microsoft applications like Delve, Sway, Planner, and Yammer. This means that users can access their Group documents from both OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online. 

To access Group files:

  1. Log in to your Office 365 account.
  2. Select the SharePoint icon from the homepage.

  3. A new Sharepoint tab will open. Your Group might be listed on the main page for you, but if you don’t see it enter the Group name in the search bar at the top left of the page and hit Enter to search for it.

  4. Select your Group from the search results.

  5. Your Group SharePoint site will open and at the top of the page is a star icon that says Not following. Click this icon to Follow your Group; this allows you to easily access your Group files from your individual OneDrive account instead of going through SharePoint each time.

  6. To access your files from your Group SharePoint site, click the Documents link on the left sidebar. This will open your Group files.

Now that you’ve Followed your Group in SharePoint, you can access your Group files from the OneDrive app in Office 365.

  1. Log in to Office 365 and select the OneDrive icon from your portal.

  2. Select the Group name from the left sidebar to display the Group files. 

You can also view the Group files by clicking on the Files tab anytime you see the main Group menu.

You can then open the full Group OneDrive by clicking on (...) and selecting Site



You should store critical work documents in an Office 365 Group instead of your individual OneDrive account. If you ever leave the university, your individual OneDrive account and all of the files stored there will be deleted. Group files are not deleted when members leave the university.


A calendar is created automatically for every Group in Office 365. This allows all Group members to see and receive invitations to events and online meetings, and every member of the Group can add, edit, and delete calendar items. To open your Group calendar:

  1. Log-in to your Office 365 account.
  2. Select the Outlook icon from your portal.

  3. Select the Calendar icon from the navigation bar at the bottom of Outlook. 

  4. Your personal calendar will open by default. Select the Group name from the left sidebar to also display the Group calendar.

  5. You can also open the Group calendar by clicking on the Calendar icon anytime you see the Group menu.


The Group Notebook is a good place for Group notes, meeting minutes/summaries, weekly reports, and other information the whole Group needs access to. You can access your Group Notebook via OneNote.

  1. Log-in to your Office 365 account.
  2. Select the OneNote icon from the portal.

  3. Choose the Group Notebook from the list of Notebooks associated with your account.

  4. You can also open the Group Notebook by clicking on the (...) and selecting Notebook anytime you see the Group menu.


Planner is an app focused on productivity and time management. Similar to the Trello application, Planner allows you to create customized, informative tasks that can be assigned to Group members. This can help streamline workflows and manage student workers, among other uses. To access the Group Planner:

  1. Log-in to your Office 365 account.
  2. Select the Planner icon from the portal.
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  3. Select the Group name from the list of plans on the left menu.
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  4. You can also open the Group Planner by clicking on the Planner tab anytime the (...) and selecting Planner anytime you see the Group menu.
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