Microsoft Power Apps

Power Apps is a low-code app development tool within the Microsoft 365 applications and add-ins, designed for the creation of custom apps via the use of app templates, services, and connectors, as well as third party sources. Apps can be accessed from the browser or the Power Apps mobile applications.

Examples of how you might use Power Apps include:

  • Create an app to keep track of your daily tasks with Planner
  • Create an app to collaborate and meet with your study group with OneNote
  • Create an app to monitor feedback with Microsoft Forms
  • Create an app to that can pull in reports from PowerBI


How It Works

Creating an App

When creating an app, a developer or “maker” can choose from three types of apps:

  • Canvas - Design and build a business app from a canvas in Microsoft Power Apps without writing code in a traditional programming language such as C#. Learn More
  • Model-driven - Much of the layout is predetermined and primarily designated by the components you add to the app. Learn More
  • Portal (Web) - Create a website and customize it with pages, layout, and content. Learn More

Within the app designer, a maker can add a data source then use Excel-like expressions to add logic easily.  Finally, publish once your app is ready to use. See the Power Apps Quick Reference Guide for details.



A power platform environment is a space where a maker stores and manages their apps and related business data. By default, all licensed Northwestern users have access to the Personal Productivity and NU Users External Approved environments. Feinberg users have access to the Personal Productivity and FSM Users environments.

Data protection policies are assigned to each environment to manage the flow of Northwestern’s O365 business data to external platforms:

  • Personal Productivity environment: does not allow data to be passed from any M365 service (Exchange, SharePoint, OneDrive for Business, etc) to an external platform (i.e. Google)
  • NU Users External Approved environment: allows data to be passed to an external platform
  • FSM Users environment: does not allow data to be passed from any M365 service (Exchange, SharePoint, OneDrive for Business, etc) to an external platform (i.e. Google). Data flow exceptions will be reviewed by FSM IT
  • Microsoft Teams environments: Microsoft Teams environments allows for users to create apps and flows using the Power Apps application from within the Teams desktop client. A Dataverse is automatically provisioned when the app is installed and is uniquely mapped to the team. Capacity limitations within Northwestern’s tenant, require that these Teams environments adhere to specific governance policies managed by Northwestern IT Collaboration Services. When an environment is created, the person creating the environment will receive a request to provide the business justification within 30 days of its creation. Environments unused after 90 days will be deleted. Support resources for Microsoft Teams environments

NOTE: If you plan to share your app, please contact Collaboration Services for guidance.


Available to

  • Students
  • Faculty
  • Staff



There is no cost to use the Standard Power Apps license.



Northwestern offers the Standard Power Apps license which allows for a limited number of app runs executed by the user per month. This license excludes the use of Dataverse/Common Data Services (CDS), custom connectors, and premium connectors which are offered through the Power Apps Premium license.


Power Apps Add-On Licenses

Power Apps Premium (was Power Apps per user)
Provides maker with access to Dataverse and use of premium and custom connectors for building unlimited apps and websites (PowerPages). Available for purchase through iBuyNU via CDW. This license is an annual subscription, renewed in July. Current price is $98.64. Annual prices are prorated for partial year subscriptions.


How to Request Service

  • If you have Shopper access, you may purchase the Power Apps Premium license from iBuyNU.
  • If your team or department has someone who assists with software purchases, you may wish to contact them. Otherwise, click on the Request Service button.


Getting Started

  1. Go to and sign in to Microsoft 365 with your NetID and NetID password, as necessary.
  2. From the Microsoft 365 home page, click All apps.
  3. From your list of available Microsoft 365 apps, select Power Apps.


Support Resources

  • While Northwestern IT supports the installation of Microsoft 365, support is not offered for individual applications. Please see the Power Apps Quick Reference Guide or refer to the Microsoft and LinkedIn Learning resources listed below for specific information.


Dataverse for Teams Environments

 LinkedIn Learning

Request Service


Service ID: 240
Tue 1/10/23 7:56 PM
Fri 9/15/23 1:57 PM