Texas A&M University has entered into an agreement with Google to provide Google Workspace for Education, which includes Gmail accounts. Use of this service is governed by university policies as well as the terms and conditions of the contract with Google. Texas A&M University acts as the administrator of user accounts on behalf of Google.

Potential users of Google Workspace for Education at Texas A&M ("the Service") are encouraged to read this entire document carefully. By using the Service, you acknowledge and agree to the following:

Core Apps & Consumer Apps Agreements

Core Apps Agreement: Texas A&M University has an agreement with Google to use its core apps. Core apps include: Gmail, Calendar, Drive (Docs, Sheets and Slides), Groups, Sites, Forms and Chat. There are no ads in Google Workspace for Education Core Services, and core service data is not used for advertising purposes. The first time you logged into your Texas A&M Gmail, you agreed to terms of service that cover your use of the Core Apps.

Consumer Apps Agreement: Texas A&M University has enabled some Consumer Apps for the campus. Consumer Apps are additional services provided by Google that Texas A&M enabled to improve your experience using Google Workspace for Education. The first time you use any of the Consumer Apps, you will be asked to agree to a separate set of terms and conditions that cover those products. Please note that these products are not covered by the same agreement that governs use of the Core Apps and using them with your Texas A&M account is equivalent to using a personal Google account. The data created while using these apps is not owned by the university and is indexed by Google and may be used to serve ads.

No one at Texas A&M is required to use any of the Consumer Apps and choosing not to use them will in no way affect your use of the Core Apps.

Acceptable Use

Users of the Service must follow both Google’s Acceptable Use Policy and Texas A&M University SAPs and Information Security Controls. The following additional provisions apply:

  1. Restrictions on Use: The Service is appropriate for many academic uses as well as some business and administrative uses. The Service is not appropriate for:
    1. Data controlled for export under Export Control Laws (EAR, ITAR).
    2. Certain types of Personally Identifiable Information (PII), including Social Security Numbers, credit card numbers, and bank or financial account numbers.
    3. Data classified as Critical according to the Texas A&M data classification standard.
    4. High-Risk Activities in which loss or inappropriate disclosure of the data would result in significant consequences in terms of economic loss, loss of trust, or legal liability.
  2. Data Sharing: Users of the Service can allow others to access data for the purpose of sharing and collaboration. Do not share data with anyone who does not have the appropriate authority to view it unless the data is of a public nature.
  3. Records Retention:
    1. State Records: The content and function of documents determine whether it is a state record. State records are subject to Texas A&M System and University records retention requirements. More information can be found in System Regulation 61.99.01 Retention of State Records
    2. User Control: The user controls the retention of data. The user may delete messages, documents, and other materials at any time.
  4. Security: All users of the Service must still comply with university IT security policies. More information can be found in the following documents:
    1. Google Workspace for Education Security and Privacy Statement
    2. Texas A&M University Rules and Standard Administrative Procedures and the Information Security ControlsGoogle Apps for Education Security and Privacy Statement
    3. Privacy: All users of the Service must comply with all Texas A&M University privacy requirements and responsibilities.
    4. Monitoring and Disclosure of Email: Texas A&M University has the authority to monitor or disclose user data under certain circumstances. Google provides Texas A&M University the ability to do so. All student and employee email messages may be subject to disclosure in audits and investigations, as well as legal or regulatory proceedings.
    5. Texas Public Information Act: If you are an employee of Texas A&M University, any documents you save or publish using the Service may be subject to the Texas Public Information Act (aka “Open Records”). Texas A&M University will manage any open records or other legal requests. (A description of Google’s approach to a government request for user data is addressed in Google’s Approach to Government Requests for User Data).
  5. Other Information:
    Advertising: Data generated by using the Service (mail, calendar, drive, etc.) will not be used by Google for marketing purposes nor will the data be shared with third parties. Google does not cross-reference data between the Google Workspace for Education environment and your personal Gmail account.

Privacy Statement

All requirements and responsibilities related to the security and privacy of information remain whether that information is maintained locally or in Google Workspace for Education. For example, any document you save or publish in Google Workspace for Education may be subject to privacy laws, such as FERPA and HIPAA. Google provides a list of commonly asked questions regarding their approach to security and privacy (Google Security and Privacy FAQ).

Items of Note:

  • If you are employed by the University, please be aware that any documents you save or publish in Google Workspace for Education may be subject to the Texas Public Information Act (aka “Open Records”). Texas A&M University will handle any open records/government requests. A description of Google’s approach to a government request for user data is addressed in an official blog post.
  • When using Google Workspace for Education, the user controls the retention of data. The user may delete messages, documents, and other materials at any time. Once a user deletes an item from their trash, it cannot be recovered after five days.
  • Google Workspace for Education is a product suite distinct from personal Google products (Gmail, calendar, search, etc.). Google does not cross-reference data between the Education environment and the public environment.
  • Data generated by using Google Workspace for Education (mail, calendar, drive, etc.) will not be used by Google for marketing purposes nor will the data be shared with third parties.

If you have questions about the privacy of Google Workspace for Education at Texas A&M, please contact Technology Services.