Photo ID

To expedite the delivery of your ID card, Harvard University ID Card Services requires all incoming students to use the ID Card Photo Submission Application.  This online application allows you to submit your photograph online prior to your arrival, so that your ID card can be ready for you at Orientation.  Your ID card is vital for accessing places and services around campus such as housing, dining, libraries, athletics, and more. To expedite the delivery of your ID card, submit your photograph online, using the Harvard University ID Card Web Application.  The following instructions have been provided by ID Card Services at the Campus Service Center:

If you have a current or previous affiliation with Harvard (e.g. student or employee) that required you to have a photo taken, we can use that photo on your student ID card.  If you do not submit a new photo by the deadline, we will use your existing photo. If you want a different photo used, please follow the instructions provided to submit a new photo.

Instructions for the ID Card Photo Submission Application:

1.) Have your picture taken.
You need a digital photo that would be appropriate for official identification and meets the following criteria:

  • Current color photo
  • White smooth background; no other people or objects in photo
  • Sufficient lighting with no shadows
  • Front view; full face filling at least 80% of frame
  • Cropped from just above the top of head to collarbone
  • Eyes open and visible and no glare on eyeglasses
  • No hats or sunglasses
  • File format must be .jpg
  • Photo size must be 280×296 pixels
  • File size cannot exceed 50KB
  • If your uploaded photo is smaller than the photo frame on the page you need to upload another photo.

If adjustments are needed to your photo, you should use photo editing software.  If you do not have one; such software,, and are free online photo editing software which you can use without downloading.

Harvard University does not endorse these websites but they are free and easy to use. Ensure that your photo formatting edits do not distort your image. If you need help with the editing email ID Card services at

2.) Claim your HarvardKey (if you haven’t already).

  • In order to log in to upload your photo, you’ll need a HarvardKey. HarvardKey is the University’s unified login system that is used by websites and Internet applications across Harvard. If you already have a HarvardKey from a prior affiliation, you do not need to claim a new one; simply log in using your existing login name and password.
  • To claim your HarvardKey, visit and follow the instructions. You’ll need your eight-digit HUID to make your claim. Please note that your HUID is confidential and should not be shared. If you do not have an HUID, you will receive this number before the Photo ID deadline.

3.) Upload your photo.
Next, log into the Harvard University ID Card Photo Submission Application at
using your HarvardKey credentials. Click the browse button and locate the photo you wish to use for your ID card. Click on “Upload.”

4.) Submit your Photo.
View your uploaded photo. If this is the photo you want to appear on your ID card, click “Submit”.  If you do not want this photo to appear on your ID card, click “Cancel” and upload another photo.  Be aware that your submitted photo will also be utilized in such places as online directories and databases.

5.)  Your photo will be reviewed.
When your photo has successfully been submitted, it will be reviewed by ID Card Services.  That office will email you at your official Harvard email address within two weeks to let you know whether your photo has been approved or rejected.  If it has been rejected, you will be asked to submit a new photo. Please watch for one of these emails so you know if you need to resubmit another photo.

6.) Receive your ID card.
You will receive your ID card at check-in on July 1st. At that time, your identity and photo will be validated. You must bring a government-issued photo ID, such as a passport or a driver’s license, in order to receive your ID card. You will not be given your ID card without some form of official documentation.

By submitting your photo online, you will avoid waiting in line to have your photo taken after your arrival on campus and then waiting again for delivery of your ID card.

If you have any questions, please read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).  If you would like to contact ID Card Services with questions, send them an email at Please type “Photo Upload” in the subject line.