DreamSpark: Does my school have to be listed to get the Microsoft DreamSpark software in US?

All Students at all accredited higher education institutions in US are eligible for DreamSpark. There is no specific work necessary on the school's part to 'enroll'.

Given that there is No single method of verifying a student status across all higher-ed institutions in the US, there are a number of mechanism that DreamSpark uses:

  1. For Universities that are in the InCommon federation and implement the Shibboleth protocol, the verification is done by the school

    • Only these schools are listed on the DreamSpark site

  2. For students who are members of 'International Student Identity Card (ISIC)

    • student submits their name and ISIC ID #

  3. National Students Clearing house verification

    • Student submits their name, school name and DOB

  4. manual verification

    • student submits their name, email and student ID/Tuition receipt

Just to reiterate, only schools that are in the InCommon federation and implement Shibboleth protocol are listed with their name on the DreamSpark site but all higher-ed students from other schools use the mechanisms 2,3,4 listed above to get their DreamSpark software.

On the DreamSpark site just below the list of schools is the following statement-- click on it to get verified.

Other Verification Options
Particularly for students in France, Switzerland and the US.

So, No your school does not have to be listed on the DreamSpark site for a higher-ed student in US to get the DreamSpark software just click on the Other Verification Options button and get verified as a student.

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