IT Resources for Students

What is Multi-factor Authentication?

Every time you use a username and password to sign in to an online service, you are using these credentials to “authenticate” yourself, i.e. to prove to the service that you are who you say you are. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds an additional layer of authentication to your username and password by asking you for a second “factor” in addition to your password.

The second factor is usually in the form of a code that is sent to your mobile device in real-time – enter your username and password, receive a code, enter the code, and now you are successfully logged in.

By adding a second layer of authentication, you are protected against someone else getting into your email account even if they know your password.

How is MFA used at CUNY?

MFA is required for logging into Microsoft Office 365 ( using your CUNY Login ( Office 365 is used at SPH for email access, and for access to Microsoft Office applications.

How does this work?

The first time you log into your account you will be prompted to set up the second authentication factor. It is highly recommended that you complete this process from a web browser on a computer, and not from a mobile device.

You will have three MFA options to choose from –

  1. Using the Microsoft Authenticator app on an iOS or Android mobile smartphone or tablet. Available for download from the Apple and Google App Stores. This is the recommended and most convenient option
  2. Typing a code in response to an SMS text message sent to your cell phone
  3. Receiving a voice telephone call to a pre-configured number and typing in the spoken code

Need more information?

For a great overview of Multi-factor Authentication on Office 365, check out this video from Microsoft – What is: Multifactor Authentication.

Additional information on how CUNY uses can be found on the CUNY Website or CUNY IT Help.

If you have additional questions, and would like to speak with someone, please get in touch with the SPH IT Helpdesk – (646)364-9555

Outlook email (


Your student email address is yours for life. You can use it to gain access to MS Office Suite while you are an active student.

Please email the helpdesk ( if you need a password reset.

Find instructions on how to add Office 365 to your mobile device here.



New users must “claim” their CUNYfirst accounts. The system verifies your identity against your Student record. Claim your account here.



How to access Blackboard: Go to and click LOGIN at the top right corner. Select Blackboard from the drop-down. Use your CUNYfirst username followed by and your CUNYfirst password to login. For example, if you log into CUNYfirst as george.washington76, you will log into Blackboard as

To update your email address, login to Blackboard. In the Home tab, under Tools, click “Update Email”. The email address you enter will be the primary account to receive Blackboard course-related notifications.

If you have any issues logging into Blackboard, please email

SPH Domain Account (sph\)

Used for WiFi, logging into lab computers, and remote access to Library resources. Please email the helpdesk ( for password resets.

Access to Library Resources

Requires SPH domain account credentials. For more information and to access to library services, click here.

Computer Labs/Laptops

Access to SPH computers requires SPH domain account credentials.

Open workstations are available in the 5th and 7th floor student lounge areas. Room 707 on the 7th floor is a computer lab and is accessible when classes are not in session. Students can borrow laptops for the day (due back at 10pm the same day), from the IT Helpdesk located on the 5th floor. Students will need an SPH ID to borrow.

The following software titles are available to all SPH students.

See the CUNY information security policy, Use of University Data in the Cloud.

Be sure to check out our software manuals at

MS Office Suite

Through your Office 365 email

Microsoft Authenticator App

Available from the Apple and Google App stores.



Contact the SPH IT Helpdesk


Contact the SPH IT Helpdesk

ArcGIS Online

Contact the SPH IT Helpdesk


Contact the SPH IT Helpdesk for account activation.


Accessed using your SPH domain account. The SPH IT Helpdesk can reset your domain account password if needed.




The SPH SharePoint Intranet provides a secure, web-acessible, portal to store confidential data, and documents, that is hosted in the SPH DataCenter. SharePoint is available to all CUNY SPH faculty, staff, and students.
Login using your SPH domain credentials (e.g. sph\JSmith)
For training, and setting up new team sites, please send a request to the SPH Helpdesk (
A Quickstart Guide to the SPH SharePoint environment can be found here.




Web print requires SPH domain account credentials. Print from your own devices (while on SPH Wi-Fi).

Web printing can only be used to print PDFs or images. For MS Office files (e.g. a Word Document), first save to pdf, and then submit to the printer.

All active students are granted $35 in printing credits at the beginning of every term (Fall, Spring, Summer). Printing costs $ 0.03 per impression (2 sides of the same page = 2 impressions).

A student printer is located in the 5th floor student lounge area. The printer can be accessed from one of the workstations in that area, or using web print.

CUNY Virtual Desktop


CUNY-wide Software Licenses