Welcome to Great Falls College MSU! We know that getting started with all of the technology as a new employee can be a bit overwhelming, so this page has been developed to walk you through the process of setting your password for the first time and how to log into and use the resources provided to you. 

Click on each of the steps, in order, and follow the instructions provided. If you run into trouble, please contact the Technology Assistance Center for help. Our contact information can be found at the bottom of this page. 


Employees have 2 main IDs that are used to access most services and software on campus. 

MSU ID (also called GID) -  is in the form of 8 numbers preceded by a - (-01212121). 

NetID -  is in the form of letter 2 numbers letter 3 numbers (a12e345). The NetID is used to login to most campus resources. 

Your supervisor, division director, or division admin assistant should have provided you with your MSU ID and NetID.  

Claim Your NetID

  1. In your web browser, go to https://www3.montana.edu/netidclaim/.
  2. Enter your MSU ID with the dash and click Submit.
      • If you do not know your MSU ID, you can click I don't know my MSU ID and you will be asked to provide your last name and last four digits of your Social Security Number. 
  3. Enter your date of birth in the format mm/dd/yyyy and click Submit. (example: July 21, 1996 would be 07/21/1996)
  4. The screen that follows should show your NetID. It should look similar to a12e345. 

Set Your Password

  1. If you have just claimed your NetID, you can simply click on Self-Service Password Portal on the page that shows your NetID. Otherwise, in your web browser, go to https://password.gfcmsu.edu and click on the blue Go to Password Portal button.
  2. We first have to create a profile in the password portal. To do that, click on the Go to Setup Tool button.
  3. Enter your NetID, obtained from step one, and click the Continue button.
  4. Enter your MSU ID and date of birth in the same format as earlier but without the slashes mmddyyyy and click Continue.
  5. Select and configure your Authentication method(s). These are what you will use to login to the password portal to set or reset your password. 
      • 5 Challenge Questions - You are required to configure 5 challenge questions.
      • Email - (optional, but recommended) Provide an email address to use to receive a verification code.
      • Text Message - (optional, but recommended) Provide a cell number that can be used to receive a verification code.
      • Note: You only need to setup one authentication method however, you are required to setup challenge questions regardless.
  6. You should be back at the start page of the password portal. To set your password, click Go to Reset Tool.
  7. Enter your NetID and click Continue.
  8. Select one of the authentication options (you may have 1, 2, 3, or 4 depending on what you setup in step 5).
      • Authentication with Challenge Questions - You will be asked to answer 3 of your 5 challenge questions to proceed.
      • Authenticate with Text - You will click Send Pin and wait to receive a text message with a pin code. Once received, enter it in the box and click Continue to proceed.
      • Authenticate with E-Mail - You will select an email address (if you entered more than one previously), click Send Pin, check your email for the pin code, enter it in the box, and click Continue.
  9. You should see a page that has a list of password requirements and boxes to enter your password and confirm your password. 
  10. Enter your desired password in both boxes and click SubmitPlease note that the list of requirements will change as each requirement is met, with the exception of the bottom one. 
  11. You should see at least 2 lines showing a status as the password is updated. They will say Enterprise LDAP and GFCMSU. Wait for them both to show success before navigating away from this page.


All GFCMSU staff and faculty are assigned an @gfcmsu.edu email account and provided with access to use and install Microsoft Office 365 for free on up to five devices, which includes supported Windows and Mac computers, iPads and supported Android tablets, and iPhones and supported Android phones. In addition, you can sign in and use the web based versions of Microsoft Office applications on any computer with a supported web browser.

Sign Into Microsoft Office

  1. In your web browser, go to https://login.microsoftonline.com/.
  2. Where it asks for you to enter an "Email, phone, or Skype" enter your NetID@gfcmsu.edu and click Next. For example, if your NetID is a12b345, you would enter a12b345@gfcmsu.edu. It is very important that you enter it exactly as described or you will not be able to login. Note: This looks like an email address but it is not your email address. That will be discussed in a later step.
  3. Enter the password that you created using the password portal from step 2 and click Next.
  4. From here, you can use all of the Microsoft Office applications in your web browser, access your student email, or install Microsoft Office to your Windows or Mac computer.

Access Your @gfcmsu.edu Email

Now that you are logged into the Microsoft Office Portal, you can access your email by locating and clicking on the Outlook icon. 

Tip: Go to https://outlook.office.com and login with the same credentials as above to go straight to your student email.

Find Your Email Address

Your email address should have been provided to you by the I.T. Department or your supervisor.

  1. Login to the Microsoft Office Portal and go to Outlook, as described in the previous steps.
  2. Click on the small circle in the upper right corner of the page that shows your initials.
  3. Click View Account.
  4. Near the top middle of the page you should see your initials and your name. Below your name is your official GFCMSU.edu email address. It will be your FirstName.LastName@gfcmsu.edu (atticus.finch@gfcmsu.edu). In some cases your email address may contain a number at the end (atticus.finch7@gfcmsu.edu). In rarer instances it may be your FirstInitial.LastName@gfcmsu.edu (a.finch2@gfcmsu.edu). In any case, what shows here is your official student email address. 


Brightspace, sometimes referred to as D2L or Desire2Learn, is the official learning management system used by the four Montana State University campuses. Each campus has their own instance and may use the built-in tools differently or use integrated software services. For this reason, it is important to attend any orientation events or new faculty training, typically provided by our Instructional Designer, Becky Sullivan.

Sign Into Brightspace

  1. There are 2 separate addresses that you can use to access GFCMSU's Brightspace. 
      • Primary - https://elearning.gfcmsu.edu - This one is hosted on campus as part of the college website and should be used primarily. Also, reachable by going to https://www.gfcmsu.edu, clicking on Faculty & Staff, and clicking on the small orange B on the navigation menu.
      • Alternate  - https://gfcmsu.desire2learn.com - This address is not hosted on campus. So, if you are unable to reach the college website for any reason, you should try this address.
  2. To login, visit one of the login pages, enter your NetID (example, a12b345), enter the password you set in step 2, and click Login.


Please note the following:
Faculty cannot login to Brightspace until the day after they are enrolled in courses through Banner.
New instructors who are enrolled in a future semester will not be able to login to Brightspace until 7-8 weeks prior to the start of that semester. If this applies to you, a temporary account and sandbox course shell may be created for you to use to learn Brightspace and develop course curriculum prior to your permanent account creation.
You may login to Brightspace but see only some or none of your courses listed. This can be for a couple of different reasons: the upcoming semester is more than 8 weeks from now, you have not returned your Letter Of Appointment, or you have returned your Letter Of Appointment but it has not been processed by the registrar's office yet. Once you are attached to the course and showing as such in the Banner Web course schedule, you will have access to the course in Brightspace later that day, typically within 2-3 hours.


Software and Services Available To Staff and Faculty

Please click on the button below for more information about the software and services available to staff and faculty. 

Software and Services

The Technology Assistance Center is located in Suite R263. 
Hours are 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
For assistance call 406-771-4440.
Contact the I.T. Department by email at helpdesk@gfcmsu.edu
Contact the eLearning Department by email at elearning@gfcmsu.edu.