Policies and Permissions

What is a University Policy?

A university policy is a mandatory action that meets some or all following criteria:

  • Connects the university's mission to individual conduct;
  • Establishes specific requirements for members of the campus community;
  • Ensures compliance with applicable laws and regulations;
  • Promotes operational efficiencies and reduces institutional risks;
  • Pertains to more than one division of the university.

Visit the WWU Policy and Procedures site for a full list of university policies.

Procedures and Practices

Aerial view of Old Main, a brick building, surrounded by colorful trees

Representing the University

Before taking on work or an initiative that represents Western and its brand to external audiences, whether as part of a Western-led effort or through a partner organization, please refer to and follow these instructions.


News Media

When asked to participate in interviews with a member of the media or an external organization as an official representative of Western, please contact University Communications for support and assistance. They can be reached at news@wwu.edu.


Advertising the institutional brand is managed by University Marketing. This includes paid digital and traditional media. Western staff who are interested in advertising should consult with University Marketing to seek assistance and ensure message and brand consistency. They can be reached at creative@wwu.edu.

Digital Profiles

Creating public profiles on behalf of Western should be managed through University Communications. This includes, but is not limited to, social media profiles and any profile created on an external site or service.

Claiming institutional web presences or properties on behalf of Western is handled by University Communications. This includes but not limited to mapping services, Google My Business, college referral site listings, and more.

Before creating a digital profile on behalf of Western, contact University Communications

Websites or Web Applications

Creating institutional websites or web applications on behalf of Western is handled by WebTech. This includes but not limited to sites hosted on the wwu.edu domain via Drupal, WordPress, or other technology. Any websites or web applications associated or linked to the University’s domains should be accessible, and administration rights should be made available to a member of WebTech.

For questions on web hosting and University domains, contact WebTech at web.help@wwu.edu. For more information on accessibility, visit designsystem.wwu.edu/accessibility.

Sharing Creative Assets

Creative Assets are defined as any brand-related files, images, documents, or communications, such as Western's logo, branded creative works, messaging, or strategy documentation.

The exchange of media files should be conducted on official Western-appointed email exchange and file-sharing accounts.

Any sharing of media, such as Western's logo, with external organizations or individuals should be first vetted by University Marketing. They can be reached at creative@wwu.edu.

Permissions/Release Form

Western’s Permission/Release form details the rights and responsibilities of both the student and Western and should be provided in either electronic or physical form, to Western staff, faculty, and alumni (who are not covered by FERPA) and Western students whenever recognizable images of their likeness are used for commercial or external purposes in print or electronic media.

Learn More About Obtaining Photo/Video Permissions


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is designed to protect confidential student records. Some photographs and videos of students are considered a form of ‘student record,’ and thus subject to the limitations imposed by FERPA.

Learn More About FERPA in Relation to Photos and Video

Use of Sculptures in Images

Western owns the sculptures on campus but does not own the copyright for the sculptures, or photos/images of the sculptures. Special permission must be obtained for use of images of these sculptures.

Learn More About Western's Sculpture Collection


Both third-party entities and WWU departments, programs, and offices must adhere to WWU’s trademark licensing program guidelines when creating and distributing branded promotional items. 

All entities intending to create and distribute promotional items that include the university's trademarks must go through WWU’s Trademark Licensing Program.

Licenses are required for goods meant for sale that feature any WWU logo or mark and all of the words such as Western Washington University, Western, WWU and Vikings. It also includes items in which there may be a likelihood of confusion regarding the origin of the goods, such as the use of the words "Western" or "Western Washington" in the school colors, or the use of a likeness of a Viking to imply affiliation with the University. If the marks are to be on products used for giveaways or for internal use, it is recommended that departments, offices, or programs use a licensed vendor to produce the item.