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Self-Service Password Reset

Self-Service Password Reset allows you (students, faculty, retired faculty, and staff) to reset, unlock, or change your College of Charleston password on your own, without the assistance of the Helpdesk.

To use this service, you must first register your account using a phone number and personal email address. You may also choose to download and use the mobile authenticator app as one of your validation methods instead. This is the information that will be used to validate your identity should you need to reset or change your password in the future.

Register, Reset, or Change

Register Your AccountTo use Self-Service Password Reset, you must first register your account.

Reset Your Password - If you forgot your password, and need to create a new one.

Change Your Password - If you know your password, but want to change it.

Resources and Tutorials

[Video] Microsoft's overview of Self-Service Password Reset

[PDF] Step-by-step instructions of how to register your account for Self-Service Password Reset 

[Mobile Authenticator App] Link for downloading and installing the Microsoft Authenticator App for your Android, iOS, or Windows Phone.

If you need further assistance with Self-Service Password Reset, contact the IT Service Desk by email, chat, or phone 843.953.3375.

Frequently Asked Questions about Self-Service Password Reset

1. I haven’t had a chance to set up Self-Service Password Reset; or I started the process, but did not complete it. Now, I can’t access any Office 365 applications.

All users must register their accounts for Self-Service Password Reset. In addition, if you do not register your account with two validation methods during the setup process, you will continue to receive prompts asking you to do so and may not be able to access Office 365 applications, including Outlook. Once you have successfully registered your account, you will not be prompted again for at least six months (when the system will prompt you to verify that your information is still up-to-date).

2. During the Self-Service Password Reset registration process the mobile authenticator app automatically defaults as a validation method, do I need to use the app?

You do not need to use the mobile authenticator app as a validation method. You can change the methods you would like to validate with by clicking Choose security info and first changing the Second Method from phone to email, then changing the First Method from authenticator app to phone (see steps 2 and 3 of instructions).

3. I would like to use the mobile authenticator app as a validation method, how do I set this up?

If you chose the mobile authenticator app as a validation method, you will need your computer and mobile phone to set it up. Install the Microsoft Authenticator app on your Android, iOS, or Windows Phone at Once installed, open the app, on the Accounts screen, select Add account. Then, select Work or school account and scan or manually enter the QR code displayed on your computer screen (see step 4 of instructions).

4. I don’t have a personal email address to use. What should I do?

We recommend setting up a free email address such as a Gmail account. Setting up a free Gmail account ( for example, only requires a first name, last name, and birthday (phone number is optional). 

5. I don’t have a mobile phone number or don’t want to use mine for this process.

You can use a mobile, office, or home phone number to set up Self-Service Password Reset. However, using an office or home phone for validation may limit your ability to change your password in the future if that line is not available. Information Technology is looking into alternatives that can be substituted for the use of mobile phones in special cases.

6. I have Multi-Factor Authentication set up through my bank and this seems like a similar process. What’s the difference between Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) and Self-Service Password Reset (SSPR)?
MFA is a two-step process that requires users to verify their identity using a secondary method after entering their username and password, each time they are performing sign-in transactions from off campus. MFA adds an additional level of security for protecting accounts. MFA has not been rolled out to the campus as a whole, it has only been enabled for a few groups, such as Information Technology, IT Ambassadors, and Senior Leadership who have opted in to the service. We hope to offer MFA to faculty and staff in the spring.
 In contrast, SSPR is a one-time registration process. Once setup, users can reset, unlock, and change their College of Charleston passwords in the future, without contacting the IT Service Desk.