Microsoft is about to make getting a university education a little more affordable. Today, the company announced a new version of Office 365 specifically for students whose school doesn’t use Microsoft’s online productivity suite.

Faculty and staff can get their hands on it in the first quarter of 2013. But if you’ve got essays and projects looming and you can’t wait till then, Microsoft says you can “buy Office University 2012 or Office University for Mac 2011 and receive a free subscription to Office 365 University when it becomes available”.

A four-year subscription will cost $79.99 and give you access to Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, Publisher and Access. To break this down a bit further for you, that’s a whopping $1.67/month. I’m sure you can justify this one to your parents.

It’s interesting that Microsoft is putting the emphasis on subscriptions now. To be honest, I wish something like this was available when I went to university. My student debt shakes its fist at you, Microsoft!