Policy FAQs

1.  What is a policy? 

A policy is a governing principle that mandates or constrains actions.  A University policy affects or applies to the personnel or operations of more than one operating group or department.  A University policy should be reviewed by the members of the University Officers Group and approved by the University Policy Committee.  An internal policy applies to personnel and operations subject to one operating group or department, provided that these policies are consistent with University policies and other superseding policies.  An internal policy should be approved by the individual member of the University Officers Group in charge or his/her designee.  More information can be found on the Policy Definition page.  

2.  What is the role of the Policy Specialist?

The Policy Specialist facilitates the University's policy governance framework, organizes and maintains the University's on-line repository of policies, serves as a resource for University departments throughout the policy process, and assists departments with policy review and renewal.  As liaison to internal policy-making groups, the Policy Specialist communicates the University's policy approval process, and assists with the communication to the University community of all policy changes.  

3.  How do I find a policy?

The Policy Repository is searchable.  Enter keywords into the search box [upper right hand corner] to search the contents of the repository.  You may also browse by category (e.g.. Human Resources or Faculty) or view all posted policies in alphabetical order.  If you need assistance, you can call the Policy Specialist at (574) 631-6411 or send an email to policy@nd.edu.  

4.  How can I get a copy of a policy?  

Many of the policies are files in portable document format (PDF) or MS Word format (DOC).  Those policies can be downloaded and printed.  Others listed are actually links to policies posted on departmental websites, and you can use your browsers print function to print.  

5.  How do I get clarification on a policy?  

Normally, you should contact the responsible office that owns the policy.  If the responsible office is not obvious, you can contact the Policy Specialist for guidance.  Any unresolved questions should be directed to the Office of General Counsel 9574) 631-6411.  

6.  Is there a standard University policy format?

You can use the Standard Policy Template and Policy Scope Statement to guide the development of a policy and ensure that you identify and consult those who might be affected.  Use of the Standard Policy Template and Policy Scope Statement are encourages, but not mandatory.  

7.  How are new policies developed?

The Policy Specialist is available to provide guidance to the responsible office, and together they determine the need for a policy.  The responsible office, committee, or task force prepares a draft policy and submits it to the sponsoring member of the University Officers Group for review.  Once the sponsoring member approves, the draft is submitted to the Policy Specialist for review by the General Counsel.  For University policies, the Policy Specialist works with the University Officers Group for final review and the University Policy Committee to arrange approval.  A detailed Policy Development & Approval Process flowchart is available here.  

8.  If my department has existing policies that should be placed in the Policy Repository, what do we do?  

If your University policy is defined in #1 above, contact the Policy Specialist to arrange addition to the Policy Repository.  

9.  We have policies that are on paper.  How can I get them into the Repository?

Policies can be added to the Repository by emailing a copy of the policy to the Policy Specialist.

10.  We have policies on our own website, but they are University Policies.  How do we get them into the Policy Repository?

Notify the Policy Specialist, who will put a link to the policy on your website into the Policy Repository

11.  The responsible office has a different version of the policy posted on its website than the one in the Policy Repository.  Which one is the official policy?  

If you see two different versions of the same policy, notify the Policy Specialist, who will work with the responsible office to reconcile the different versions and ensure that the latest one is posted.  

12.  My department has policies that are commonly understood but not written down anywhere.  Can I get help transitioning them into written policies?  

The Policy Specialist can work with you to draft and approve your policies.