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IE BUMPER Eligibility for Ohio State Username

Before you can begin using OSU services like BuckeyeLink, Applicant Center, OSU Wireless, University E-mail, or Carmen, you must activate your identity (your Ohio State Username and Password). This username and password is also used by alumni to manage their lifetime e-mail forwarding. This is a one-time process using the Self-Service site at

Note: Alumni are not granted access to OSU systems (such as Buckeyelink, Carmen, advising reports/unofficial transcripts, or library services) with this password. For help accessing the OSU Library resources as an alumnus, please contact The OSU Alumni Association.

Who is eligible

Individuals currently employed by the university, students who are enrolled or who have been admitted to The Ohio State University, and applicants are eligible to activate an OSU identity. It is important you do this since your Ohio State Username is required for most university communications, scheduling classes, viewing grades online, accessing financial aid information, and many other online services.

How to activate

Activating your identity is a two-part process consisting of requesting an activation code and then logging in with your activation code and completing the required steps.

Open your browser and go to the Self-Service site at

Follow the instructions below as appropriate.

Request an activation code

  1. Click Activate Now.

  2. If this is your first visit to the Self-Service site and you do not yet have an activation code, click I need an Activation Code.

  3. Type your Ohio State Username (your lastname.#), your first name, last name, and date of birth in the spaces provided. Click Next.

  4. Select whether you would like to receive your activation code by e-mail or by postal mail. Click Next.

    Note: If you don't have an e-mail or postal mail address on file, you will be able to select a Service Desk option. In this case, you must contact 8HELP at 614-688-4357 and provide the proper information about your identity to receive your activation code.

  5. Select the address where you would like to have your activation code sent (you must select one to proceed). Click Next.

    Note: For Security Reasons, your full address will not be displayed. If no correct address is listed, click the My Information is Incorrect link. Follow the instructions to update your contact information. Once you have a valid address, return to My OSU and repeat the process of requesting an activation code.

  6. Verify your selection for delivery of the activation code. Click Submit.

  7. Click OK at the confirmation screen.

Activate your identity

  1. Go back to, and click Activate Now.

  2. Click I have an Activation Code.

  3. Type your lastname.# and the activation code you received in the spaces provided. Click Next.

  4. Read the policy information displayed. Click I agree to proceed with the activation.

  5. Select a security question from each of the 5 (five) drop-down boxes and provide a corresponding answer. Click Submit to proceed.

    Note: Case-sensitivity is not important; you can use both upper- and lowercase characters.

  6. Create a password using a minimum of  8 (eight) characters including three of four of these character sets: capital letters (A-Z); lowercase letters (a-z); numerals, and special characters (!?%&#).

    1. Type the password next to New Password.

    2. Re-type it next to Re-Enter New Password, and click Submit.

      Note for applicants: If you have not yet been admitted to Ohio State, step 6 is your last step. Your username is activated and you may check your application status within 15 minutes at All others, continue on to step 7.

  7. Check where your e-mail is currently being delivered (except applicants). The default for students is BuckeyeMail and for faculty/staff, the University E-Mail Service. If you are an admitted applicant, any e-mail addressed to your is delivered to your applicant "admissions" email address until changed.

    Note: Faculty and staff should be aware of their college or department's preferred e-mail delivery method and policies. Even if you're permitted to use a non-OSU delivery address, there are limitations. Switching will result in hindered global calendar and address list functionality, although any calendar and e-mail information already stored on the University E-mail service will remain and will be available via web access.

    1. Faculty/staff and students: Either leave the default address selected, or if you are aware of the possible issues and still want to proceed, select Deliver my e-mail to the following address. Provide a non-OSU e-mail forwarding address (e.g., Gmail, Yahoo, etc.).

    2. Lifetime E-mail Forwarding users: Select Deliver my e-mail to the following address. Provide a non-OSU e-mail forwarding address.

    3. If you made a change to e-mail delivery, review the details and then click OK.

    4. Verify a message saying the change was successful appears. E-mail forwarding should be effective in about 15 minutes.

  8. At this point, you should see a green box with the message "Your identity has been activated." Most services should be available to you in about 15 minutes.

    1. Review the information about wireless and password synchronization.

    2. Be sure to click Log Out before walking away from your computer.

If you have read the article above and are still experiencing difficulties, please contact the IT Service Desk.
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