Policies

OSU has policies to govern the operation of the university. They are published by the administering offices for easy reference.


General University Policies

OSU’s President and the President’s Cabinet have established general university policies to apply to faculty, staff, and students at Oregon State University. Be aware of these policies and where they reside should you find need to refer to them during the course of your career at OSU.

Computing Resources

Policies regulating use of computing resources

OSU's Acceptable Use of University Computing Resources policy ensures that computing resources are used in a manner befitting the standards of the OSU community. Educate yourself regarding the policy and use resources responsibly.

Examination Policies

The examination policies regulating group exams, final exams, exam conflict resolution, and petitions to change the time of an exam are provided in the catalog. Final and group exam schedules for current and near future terms are also available at this link.

Guidelines for Release of Email Addresses

The following guidelines, defined by the vice provost for information services and the university registrar, apply to the release of email addresses in compliance with FERPA and OSU’s policy, Acceptable Use of University Computing Facilities, which states, "The electronic mail system shall not be used for "broadcasting" of unsolicited mail (unless authorized by the department chair or unit head) or for sending chain letters. (Broadcast means more than one person as recipient; Unsolicited means without authorization.)

The communication system "shall not be used for sending of material that reasonably would be considered obscene, offensive, or threatening by the recipient or another viewer of the material." See Acceptable Use of University Computing Resources.

Authorizing Agents:

  • Unit heads can authorize unsolicited broadcast emails to recipients within the unit.
  • The special assistant to the provost can authorize unsolicited broadcast emails to faculty and staff.
  • The Registrar's Office can authorize unsolicited broadcast requests to the entire student body or to subsets of students.

Criteria for Authorization of Student Email Messages:

  • The purpose of the email must be related to the university's educational mission with specific relationship to the students being contacted.
  • The email must be memo style, not promotional, and must not appear to be advertising.
  • Parameters used for selecting the student recipients should be so defined that only students who possibly might be interested will be contacted.
  • Student surveys may be approved if the survey will provide data that will improve the unit's services or offerings to students.

Prohibited Messages:

  • Sales of any kind.
  • Anything for profit.
  • Anything viewed as advertising, even for academic or university business, even if there is no fee.

If a request is denied, the requestor will be encouraged to use postal mail.

OSU Discrimination and Harassment Policies

OSU is committed to fostering a welcoming and diverse community environment. The OSU Discrimination and Harassment policy defines the behavioral expectations of members of the OSU community.

OSU Policy of Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability

OSU is committed to providing equal opportunities for all of our students. This policy defines the university's commitment to providing equal opportunity and support to disabled students as well as faculty and staff. The offices of Equity and Inclusion and Disability Access Services are available to assist individuals with requests for access.

Prerequisite Policy

Prerequisites are established by Category II approval. No prerequisites or corequisites may be deleted from or added to a course or section without an approved Cat II. Prerequisites for a section must be in place before registration for a term begins.

Record Retention (OAR ‘s)

What records do we retain? How long do we keep them? Refer to the Oregon Administrative Rules to find out. Division 20 governs the maintenance of Student Records.

Student Bereavement

Academic Advising Council
Guidelines for Students, Faculty and Professional Staff Regarding Student Bereavement

Oregon State University (OSU) recognizes students may experience times of grief and bereavement due to the loss of someone close. The development of the Student Bereavement Guidelines was a collaborative effort of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee and Academic Advising Council, Academic Affairs and the Office of the Dean of Student Life. The guidelines are intended to help students and faculty navigate a difficult situation while supporting academic success.

Students: In the unfortunate event that you experience the loss of a parent, guardian, sibling, spouse, roommate, or other person close to you, please notify or have a friend or family member notify your instructor(s) and academic advisor(s) if an absence is needed. Should you need to be absent from classes, please remember that you are responsible for providing documentation of the death or funeral services attended to your academic advisor(s). Documentation may include, but is not limited to a memorial service program or newspaper/website obituary notice.

If you are absent, upon your return to OSU please arrange to meet with your instructor(s) and advisor(s) to discuss options and strategies for catching up with missed academic work and for completing the term successfully, if possible. Consideration for academic assistance and the opportunity to complete the course are at the discretion of your instructor(s) and dependent on the nature of the course. Your advisor(s) can also help you access support resources in the OSU community, such as the staff of Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and Spiritual Life @ OSU. OSU recognizes that in the immediate aftermath of a tragic loss, the farthest thing from your mind may be your academic situation. However, when you are ready and able to resume your studies or to take appropriate steps affecting your academic future, we in the OSU community are available to help you.

For additional information regarding absences from classes or Academic Regulations, please refer to the Dean of Student Life FAQs page: http://studentlife.oregonstate.edu/main/student-faq

Faculty: The student is responsible for providing academic advisor(s) with documentation of the death or funeral service attended. The advisor(s) will notify instructors of the receipt of documentation. Documentation may include, but is not limited to, a memorial service program or newspaper/website obituary notice. Given proper documentation, the instructor may choose to excuse the student from class absences and provide the opportunity to earn equivalent credit and to demonstrate evidence of meeting the learning outcomes for missed assignments or assessments. Consideration for academic assistance and the opportunity to complete the course through alternate arrangements are at the discretion of the instructor and dependent on the nature of the course.

In support of these guidelines, it is hoped that OSU instructors will not penalize students who have provided verification of their bereavement needs. Additionally, OSU instructors are asked to offer reasonable compensatory experiences if appropriate, to ensure that students’ academic progress in the course will not be unduly compromised. These might include extending deadlines, allowing make-up exams, recalculating the weighting of scores from other course assignments or exams, or offering an incomplete, to name a few. The Center for Teaching and Learning is available to consult with instructors about options for designing compensatory experiences (541-737-2804; ctl@oregonstate.edu). It is up to the instructor to determine what constitutes a reasonable compensatory experience in a given course.

Student Conduct and Community Standards

Students at OSU are expected to behave in a manner consistent with the code of Student Conduct and Community Standards, which stresses abiding by the law and treating one another with dignity and respect. Please familiarize yourself with the established standards and conduct yourself in a manner that will maintain and grow the special community that exists at OSU.

Student Jury Duty Service

Guidelines for Faculty and Professional Staff Regarding Student Jury Duty Service

Oregon State University supports students’ civic and legal responsibilities if called to serve on a jury while enrolled at OSU. Within this context, students who are called to serve on a jury should consult with their faculty and academic advisors about the impact of their jury service on their academic progress. In appropriate cases, students may ask the court to defer their service to a later term. In the event a student serves on a jury, the student is responsible for reporting her/his service and expected absences to instructors as soon as possible.

In support of this service, OSU faculty should not penalize students who have provided verification of their jury duty assignment under course attendance policies. Additionally, OSU faculty are expected to offer reasonable compensatory experiences to ensure that students’ academic progress in the course will not be unduly compromised. These might include extending deadlines, allowing make-up exams, or recalculating the weighting of scores from other course assignments or exams, to name a few. The Center for Teaching and Learning is available to consult with faculty about options for designing compensatory experiences, 541-737-2804; ctl@oregonstate.edu. It is up to the instructor to determine what constitutes a reasonable compensatory experience in a given course.

If a student is forced to withdraw from a course or a term due to a prolonged term of service on a jury, the university will work with the student to mitigate any potential institutional academic and/or financial hardship. Under these guidelines, university offices may consider jury duty among the legitimate reasons to consider granting an exception to policies regarding student financial obligations. Again, it will be up to the student to initiate changes in her/his enrollment in consultation with academic advisors, the Office of the Registrar, Business Affairs, Housing and Dining Services, and the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships.

Faculty may contact Susie Brubaker-Cole, Associate Provost for Academic Success and Engagement, with questions, 541-737-6164.

Students Called to Active Military Duty

The university has developed a policy to provide options to those students being deployed to active military duty. The deployment page under Current Students on the Veterans page has further details.

Unauthorized Peer-to-Peer File Sharing and Other Copyright Infringement

The university takes copyright infringement seriously. As set forth in the Acceptable Use of University Computing Resources Policy, all students must abide by federal and state copyright laws when using university computing or network resources. The unauthorized publishing or use of copyrighted material on the university computer network is strictly prohibited and users are personally liable for the consequences of such unauthorized use. This specifically applies to Peer-to-Peer or P2P file-sharing of copyrighted music and movies. Students should be aware that by engaging in unauthorized sharing of copyrighted material, they not only violate university policy, but they may also be held criminally and civilly liable by federal and/or state authorities.

Under current copyright law, criminal cases of copyright violation carry a penalty of up to five (5) years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Civil penalties for copyright infringement include a minimum fine of $750 for each work. Oregon State University will subject students who violate this policy to discipline as appropriate. For a first-time violation of this copyright policy, students are required to pass a copyright quiz within 72 hours or else their network access is disabled. Repeated infringement is subject to disciplinary action by the office of Student Conduct and Community Standards, up to and including expulsion from the university.

Click to see the entire policy regarding Unauthorized Peer-to-Peer (P2P) File Sharing and Other Copyright Infringement.

Undergraduate Planned Educational Leave Program

The Undergraduate Planned Educational Leave Program is designed to allow a student to pursue other activities that will assist them in clarifying their educational goals, such as job opportunities and experiences away from campus, military deployment, time to resolve personal or medical problems, or other similar pursuits. The PELP allows an undergraduate student to temporarily suspend their academic work for a period of time (in accordance with AR 13a, 13b, and 13c), and resume their studies with minimal procedural difficulties. Utilization of PELP reserves the student’s right to keep their original academic catalog active during their absence. PELP should be used if the student will be absent for four or more terms.

The PELP is available to students who meet the following conditions:

  • Must be an undergraduate student.
  • PELP may only be requested one time in the course of a student's academic career (Military deployments are an exception to this limitation. All military personnel who are deployed for military service may submit a voluntary leave request for each deployment.)
  • PELP petitions must be file before the end of the next regular academic term (Fall, Winter, Spring) after the last term attended.
  • Students who have been suspended from OSU for academic and/or conduct reasons are not eligible for PELP.

Important Things to Know about PELP:

  • PELP can be applied to as many as six consecutive regular academic terms (not including the summer terms).
  • Submitting a petition for PELP does not withdraw a student from their courses for the current or future terms.
  • There is a $25 non-refundable application fee.
  • PELP began with the 2011–2012 academic year (Summer 2011). Any former OSU students who attended OSU prior to the 2011–2012 academic year and have been absent for four or more consecutive regular academic terms will be held to OSU’s prior policy that resets the academic catalog to the catalog in effect at the time they return to OSU.
  • A notation of the dates of any approved leave will be indicated on each student’s official transcript.
  • Students receiving financial aid need to contact the Financial Aid Office.
  • International students and student athletes should work with their respective advisors prior to filing for PELP.
  • Any student who utilizes PELP and does not return by the specified term will be inactivated and required to file for readmission, resulting in the appropriate adjustment to their catalog term in effect at the time they return to OSU. This will change their baccalaureate core, degree, and major requirements.

To apply for PELP:

  • Complete the PELP petition.
  • Obtain all required approvals.
  • Return the completed form to the Office of the Registrar (B102 Kerr Administration Bldg.) for review.