Google Groups: Request a Group

Google Groups, a tool for a team of users to quickly collaborate with one another either via email, or any of Google's various applications, is available with Google Apps for the University of Minnesota.

Google Groups is all about helping users connect with people, access information, and communicate effectively over email and on the web. With members of your team all in the same group, Google Groups makes it easy for sharing things like Google Calendars and Docs with one another.

Users are assigned roles that determine what they can do within a group. Participants subscribe to groups and participate in group discussions, and group managers create new groups and manage group members and roles, discussions, and other settings.

Group Formats

There are four Group Formats available:

  • Web Forum: An online forum where members of the group can post and reply to posts. A web forum is designed primarily to allow users to interact with the group through the web user interface. Initially, these forums have web-only features (e.g., tagging of posts) enabled. Users post topics through the web interface, but can receive updates via email as well.

  • Q&A Forum: An online forum where questions can be posed and members can answer. A Question and Answer forum allows members to post questions and follow-up answers. Members can identify which answers are the best, and also mark questions they are interested in. As with web forums, users must post through the web interface, but are able to receive updates via email.

  • Email List: An email service to contact large groups of people in a single email without exceeding Google's sending limits. An email list allows users to post from the web or through email. This is a mailing list group. It is the most common type of Google Group.

  • Collaborative Inbox: An inbox shared by the Group so that multiple people can be responsible for response to emails. A collaborative inbox allows members of a group to manage the workflow state of topics within the group. These groups have specific features and permissions set. If you choose to not use these features, they will need to be disabled individually.

Groups may not be used:

  • for unsolicited mass mailings;
  • to promote commercial products, services, or organizations; or
  • for purposes which violate University policies, local ordinances, or state or federal laws.

Group Types

U of MN Google Apps users may request groups for official University groups and personal groups through the online request form available on the Google Groups Request site (https://it.umn.edu/google-groups-request-group).

These groups are subject to the policies set forth by the University's Acceptable Use of Electronic Resources, FERPA and HIPAA.

Requests are usually granted within one business day.

Note: Groups made through groups.umn.edu will not be managed by the University and will end with @googlegroups.com. You must use the request forms to receive an @umn.edu address.

Official University Groups

  • Official University group requests can only be made by University staff and faculty, to conduct University business.
  • Request group by using the Official University Group Form.

Official University Course Groups

  • Official University course groups can be requested by instructors and TAs.
  • Official University Course Groups membership is based on University records and are updated at noon and 8pm everyday via a script.
  • Adding people to the Group that are not on the Official Course List can be added by OIT upon request (contact the HelpDesk).
  • Docs and Google calendars can be shared with students enrolled in a course.
  • Request group by using the Official University Course Group Form.

Personal Groups

  • Personal groups are available to everyone at the University, and can be used for any number of reasons, including study groups, social clubs or family lists.
  • Request group by using the Personal Group Form.


After you have received confirmation that your group has been created, you can manage your group.  To access your groups, go to groups.umn.edu or go to your University Gmail account, click on the Apps Launcher, then select Groups.

NOTE:  we cannot convert existing accounts into Google groups