Creating a OneNote Class Notebook

Currently the only way to create a Class Notebook for the first time is via the OneNote Portal (please let me know if I’ve missed something but I can’t see it) and using a web browser. With the addition of the Class Notebook Tools on the desktop version there are quick links to the Portal pages, but on the Mac version you can only access these tools once you have opened a Class Notebook – it’s kind of strange but that’s what it’s like.
Anyway here we go –

Step 1

Go to and log in using your school email address and password.

Step 2

Look for “Create a OneNote Class Notebook” on left side of the window and click the link.

Click Create a OneNote Class Notebook

Step 3

Click the Class Notebook Sign In button

Sign in Button

Step 4

Click Create a Class Notebook button

Choose Create a Class Notebook

Step 5

Type the name of your class and click Next.
I highly recommend using a relevant name like “Science Year 9 Class 1 2016” and also include the current calendar year – it will help in the future :)

Type a Class Name

Step 6

You can now add other Teachers that can have access to the Notebook. This will assign them the same access rights as you. This is beneficial when you have teachers teaching the same subject and have different classes but you want to share the same content. I will suggest not going down the path of having all students of a Subject sharing one Notebook as this would be chaotic – it is better to create a Notebook per class. I will also add at this point (because you may be wondering), it is very easy to copy content from one Class Notebook to another.
Yes, this does mean that the added teachers can modify and delete pages, sections and content of the Notebook. (there are recovery tools btw)

Type teachers names

You can search for teachers by either typing their name or email address.

Step 7

Add the student names for the class and click next.
I always recommend holding off adding students until you have at least added some basic content. You can come back to this area at any time just by following Step 1-4.

Again this can be achieved by typing the student name or email address. If your LMS can handle exporting class email addresses into a comma delimited list, you can paste all of your class in one hit. Alternatively you can use this online tool by Stephen McConnachie. My school uses SEQTA and I can send emails to classes on bulk. When I do this it basically opens my default email client and places the student email addresses into the BCC field, I just then copy and paste the addresses into the add student box.

Step 8

Now add and remove the default Sections that each student will have.

add remove sections

With the Class Notebook Tool it has become much easier to add new sections on bulk to student sections. I would strongly consider removing the sections you are never going to use, just to remove any confusion by the students.

Step 9

The next screen provides a preview of the Notebook and how it kind of looks for teachers and students, it really is a strange step but 

¯_(◔ ‿ ◔)_/¯ . So just click next.

Step 10

After the Notebook has setup (it may take some time) you can click the link to open the Notebook in OneNote.

Open the Notebook

Step 11

During the creation stage all teachers and students should receive an email that contains a link to the Class Notebook. In early days I found this unreliable, but now it seems to work every time. It also seems to consistently send new emails as you add students or teachers to the Notebook. You can also copy a link to share with other teachers and students that you would like to have access to the Notebook – this could be then added to a LMS or the like.

Step 12

You can always come back to the Class Notebook creator to add teacher and students to the class or get the share link, just follow through Steps 1-4.

Again, I always recommend holding off adding students until you have at least added some basic content.

Once you have completed this you will have a Class Notebook that resembles what I discussed in the OneNote Class Notebook Overview.

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