Policy Manual


The Office of General Counsel maintains the policies contained in the Appalachian State University Policy Manual which are applicable to all faculty, staff, students and visitors of the University.

University Policies are developed, reviewed, revised, approved and published in accordance with the standards and procedures specified in University Policy 101, Policy on Policies.

The following are recently revised or newly implemented Appalachian State University policies:


Record Retention

The UNC System Records Retention and Disposition Schedule (the “Schedule”) is a tool for the staff and faculty of Appalachian State University to use when managing the records in their offices. This schedule lists records commonly found at Appalachian and gives an assessment of their retention value by indicating when, and if, those records may be destroyed.

Under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 121-5 and N.C. Gen. Stat. § 132-3, no Appalachian employee may destroy University records without the consent of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (DNCR). The Schedule is the primary mechanism used by the DNCR to give consent. Records, regardless of medium, not listed in the schedule may not be destroyed without direct approval from the DNCR. For more information on the Schedule and for questions on the destruction of records, please visit the following website Appalachian’s Records Management.

Revised: Dec 16, 2019

Public Records

Under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 132 et seq., public records may be released to the public upon request. Public records are defined as any document, regardless of physical form or storage location, that is made or received in the scope of conducting University business.

Records held in any medium may be considered a public record, including but not limited to documents, papers, letters, maps, books, photographs, films, sound recordings, electronic data-processing records, artifacts, and electronic communications.

Although a wide range of University records may be considered releasable to the public, Federal and State law preclude certain records from being released. Such records generally include, but are not limited to:

  • Personnel Records, under Article 7 of N.C. Gen. Stat. § 126;
  • Research Records, under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 116-43.17; and
  • Student Records, under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Appalachian is committed to operating in an environment of openness, transparency and cooperation with members of the public while observing the integrity and confidentiality of content that is not designated as a public record. In order to ensure Appalachian’s commitment to openness and integrity are met, the University has developed a process for facilitating public record requests. For more information please visit the following website University Communications – Public Record Requests.

Revised: Dec 16, 2019

Intellectual Property

Appalachian State University encourages faculty, staff, and students to participate in scholarly research and creative activities that create knowledge and enhance the education of our students and community. Intellectual property is a general term that describes a wide variety of works created by a musician, artist, author, inventor, or researcher. These works must be original creations manifested in a tangible form that can be legally protected. Intellectual property law includes the rights of patent, trademark, trade secret, and copyright protection. These rights protect the creator of the work, and the University, from infringement and use by third parties. Both Appalachian and the University of North Carolina system have established policies and procedures to balance the interests of the public, the University, and the respective inventor(s), author(s), or artist(s) in intellectual property arising from research and creative activities conducted by employees and students.

Employees and students using university resources or creating intellectual property in the course and scope of their employment have a duty to disclose such intellectual property created or discovered. To complete an intellectual property disclosure form please visit https://researchprotections.appstate.edu/intellectual-property-ip/ip-forms. The process for disclosing the creation of intellectual property at the University for employees and students is detailed in the University’s Intellectual Property Transfer Policy https://policy.appstate.edu/Intellectual_Property_Transfer. For questions or more information, please feel free to reach out to the Office of Research Protections.

Revised: Dec 16, 2019

First Amendment

Appalachian State University (“University”) is a supporter of the concepts of free speech and academic freedom and acknowledges the differences between speakers, opinions, and beliefs. Still, the University must balance respect for and obligation to the First Amendment of the United States Constitution against an institutional culture of respect for thought, belief, and community similar to what other universities face across the nation. Despite this challenge, the University’s policies and procedures ensure that faculty and students will remain free to learn, study, and gain knowledge inherent within the academic pursuit of higher education consistent with applicable state and federal law and The University of North Carolina’s Campus Free Speech & Free Expression policy. The UNC Campus Free Speech and Free Expression can be found at UNC Policy 1300.8 – Policy on Free Speech and Free Expression Within the University of North Carolina System.

Facility Use

Appalachian State University encourages the free exchange of ideas on its campus while assuring that other important University interests and activities are not infringed upon or disrupted. As such, the Facility Use Policy is designed to support the University’s educational mission by establishing procedures for University-affiliated and non-affiliated persons and groups, who seek to use buildings or grounds owned, leased, or operated by the University. More specifically, this policy is adopted for the orderly use of University facilities and property by University departments, recognized student clubs and organizations, University affiliated groups and persons, and non-University affiliated groups and organizations and persons, as well as to establish parameters and procedures governing the use of the property owned or controlled by Appalachian State University. Appalachian State University’s Facility Use Policy can be found at https://policy.appstate.edu/Facility_Use. Appalachian State University’s Facility Use Policy derives its authority from the  UNC Policy Manual 100.1, Section 502.