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Google Workspace - Enabling Google Workspace Apps at CU Boulder

CU Boulder has already enabled many, but not all, of the Google Workspace applications/add-ons for use by campus. As new releases become available, or as users find current applications/add-ons that have not already been enabled, users may ask to have them enabled for use. OIT accepts requests to enable additional applications/add-ons. Requests for additional applications/add-ons are reviewed on a case by case basis. The following describes the process for requesting the enabling of an additional application/add-on, how OIT determines if the application/add-on can be enabled, and summarizes applications/add-ons that have already been reviewed but not enabled.

Which Google Workspace applications/add-ons are already enabled for use at CU Boulder?

Many Google Workspace applications/add-ons are already enabled and ready to use. Please review the full list at on OIT's Application Description page.

How can I request the enabling of an additional Google App/add-on?

If you are aware of a Google app/add-on you would like to have enabled, please contact the IT Service Center at oithelp@colorado.edu or 303-735-4375. Please include the following:

  • The name of the app/add-on you would like to have enabled.
  • The URL of the app/add-on you would like to have enabled.
  • A general description of why you would like to have access to the app/add-on.
  • A general description of how you would make use of the app/add-on.

How does OIT decide if a Google App/add-on can be enabled?

Many factors go into the decision for enabling a new Google app/add-on for use by CU Boulder. There is no guarantee that OIT will be able to turn on a new application/add-on. Here are some of the considerations OIT makes to determine suitability:

  • Google Contract Issues: The CU Boulder Google contract, and the specific protections documented in the contract, only applies to Google “Core Services” which includes Gmail, Calendar, Groups, Drive (including Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Forms), Sites, Contacts and Talk/Hangouts. The contract includes important data protection statements and sets relationship expectations between Google and CU Boulder that allows OIT to administer the CU Boulder Google Workspace environment reliably, consistently, and in a way that meets regulatory compliance. Non “Core Services” that are not covered by the contract do not necessarily include these protections. Therefore, any additional non “Core Service” requested must include careful consideration for how it will be used by the university before any decision can be made on the suitability for enabling the application/add-on. Additional information about Google Workspace Core Services can be found on Google's Services Summary page.
  • Accessibility Issues: CU Boulder and OIT must understand and document the accessibility considerations for the application/add-on before enabling. If the application/add-on has significant accessibility issues, it may not be suitable for university use and not enabled until Google addresses the issues.
  • University Affiliated Content Issues: Content hosted within any CU Boulder Google App can give the appearance of association with and representation of the University of Colorado, whether intended or not. If access to the content includes general public access, OIT, the Office of Information Security (OIS) and University Counsel may review the ability to publish information publically and determine the Google App cannot adequately protect the representation of the university.
  • Data Issues: Since the CU Boulder Google contract only covers “Core Services”, the data protections detailed within the contract do not apply to enabling additional, non “Core Services” Google Workspace. The separately specified “Terms of Service” that the university must agree to when enabling these non “Core Services” do not necessarily include required protections for  confidential information (as per federal legislation such as FERPA or HIPAA protected information), protecting intellectual property rights, defining termination conditions including what happens to any data stored within the enabled Google App, as well as other important contract considerations such as indemnification, effective court of law, and other issues typically written into a contractual agreement.  Due to this lack of protection, OIT must consider how the enabled Google App will be used by CU Boulder faculty, students and staff and the type of data that will be stored. If the use of the application/add-on would make use of data that would require specific protections in place, and if the “Terms of Service” do not adequately address data protections, the Google App/add-on cannot be enabled.
  • Administrative Issues: OIT has finite staffing resources for administering Google Workspace. If a Google App would require an administrator to create and/or manage the access and use of the application/add-on, the additional management overhead may prohibit OIT from enabling unless/until staffing resources for overseeing the additionally enabled Google App are allocated.

The requirements and intended use for each Google App are unique and must consider all of the issues prior to deciding the suitability for use by CU Boulder.

Current Status: Accessibility Considerations

In the summer of 2014, CU Boulder created an IT Services and Applications Accessibility (ITSAA) project to make rapid progress towards improving accessibility compliance. The project will include the assessment, documentation, and remediation of accessibility considerations of the CU Boulder Google Workspace environment. Until the already enabled CU Boulder Google Workspace meet the deadlines and goals of the ITSAA project, requests for enabling additional Google Workspace will be delayed until after the accessibility efforts conclude.

Which specific Google Workspace applicaitons/add-ons have already been considered?

  • Classroom: OIT has reviewed requests to enable Classroom and cannot enable the application. CU Boulder provides Canvas as the supported LMS.
  • YouTube: OIT has reviewed requests to enable YouTube and cannot enable the application.
  • Google Voice: OIT has reviewed requests to enable Google Voice and cannot enable the application.
  • Google Wallet: OIT has reviewed requests to enable Google Wallet and cannot enable the application.
  • Google Home: OIT has reviewed requests to enable, but at this time will not be turned on.