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Pepperdine | Seaver College

University Policies
(Handbook 2017-2019)

The content of this chapter is applicable to both full-time and adjunct faculty.

CHAPTER X.  Administrative and Miscellaneous Policies

10.1.    Computer and Network Usage

10.2.    Confidentiality

10.3.    Copyright and Patent Policy

10.4.    Equal Employment Opportunity Employer

10.5.    Faculty Notice and Comment Policy

10.6.    Jointly-Sponsored University Events

10.7.    Pepperdine Disclosure: California Education Code Section 66270

10.8.    Proof of Employability

10.9.    Safety and Hazardous Substances

10.10.   Selection of Specified Personnel and Faculty of Pepperdine University

10.11.  Smoking

10.12.  Substance Abuse

10.13.  Use of Name and Letterhead


(Included since 1988; modified 2012; 2014)

Pepperdine University provides access to computing and network resources in order to support its instruction, research, and service missions; administrative functions; and student and campus life activities. All such use shall be ethical and consistent with the University's mission. Any other uses, including uses that jeopardize the integrity of the Pepperdine network, the privacy or safety of other users, or that are otherwise illegal, are prohibited.

Users should be aware that their uses of University computer and network resources are not private. While the University does not routinely monitor individual usage, the normal operation and maintenance of the University's computing resources require backup, logging of activity, the monitoring of general and individual usage patterns, and other such activities that are necessary for information security and the rendition of service. In addition, the University reserves the right to review, monitor and/or capture any content residing on, or transmitted over, its computers or network at its sole discretion. The University reserves the right to limit access to its computers or network, and to remove or limit access to material residing on its computers or network.

The complete Computer and Network Responsible User Policy and any technical requirements and guidelines are published at http://services.pepperdine.edu/it/policies.

(Included since 1988; modified 2014)

No faculty member shall disclose or discuss with any non-employee or unauthorized person, any confidential matter regarding the University or any of its activities or any information obtained by virtue of the faculty member's employment with the University, the disclosure of which might in any way be detrimental to the interests of the University. All University employees are required to sign a confidentiality agreement as a part of their new hire paperwork with Human Resources.

(Included since 2000; modified 2012)

Copyrightable materials which are developed by University personnel within the course of employment or which are developed with the use of University funds or facilities shall be the property of the University. For the detailed copyright and patent policy please see the information provided on the Provost's website: http://www.pepperdine.edu/about/administration/provost/content/policies/CopyrightPatent.pdf


(Included since 1978; revised 2001; modified 2012; 2014)

1. Pepperdine is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of any status or condition protected by applicable federal, state, or local law. Pepperdine is committed to providing a work environment free from all forms of harassment and discrimination. Engaging in unlawful discrimination or harassment will result in appropriate disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal from the University.

Pepperdine is religiously affiliated with the Churches of Christ. It is the purpose of Pepperdine to pursue the very highest employment and academic standards within a context which celebrates and extends the spiritual and ethical ideals of the Christian faith. While students, faculty, staff and members of the Board of Regents represent many religious backgrounds, Pepperdine reserves the right to seek, hire, and promote persons who support the goals and mission of the institution, including the right to prefer co-religionists.

It is the intent of the University to create and promote a diverse work force consistent with its stated goals and mission.

2. A full statement of Pepperdine’s Equal Employment Opportunity is posted at

As stated in the EEO Policy (Section 1 of the University Policy Manual), Pepperdine prohibits unlawful discrimination and harassment. The policy includes conduct that occurs on Pepperdine's campus, while traveling on University business, or at University related social functions, whether on or off campus. The University does not tolerate unlawful discrimination and harassment of its employees by vendors, guests and other visitors to campus.
Information on how to file a complaint is provided below. Additionally, with regard to complaints concerning sexual harassment or violence, the University's Title IX coordinators are available to address concerns or receive complaints.

Discrimination and Harassment

Title IX Coordinators

Filing Complaints


(Effective as of March 29, 2006)

The faculty and administration of the University each have strong and vital interests in the terms and provisions of faculty handbooks and in the development of policies that will advance the mission of the University and its five schools. Mutual respect and candor in communication serve as the guiding principles in all dealings between the faculty and administration, including matters of governance. As one manifestation of the University’s commitment to those principles, the administration (including the central University administration and each school’s administration) shall provide full-time faculty members with appropriate notice of no less than thirty days to review and comment on new policies, changes to existing policies or
amendments to faculty handbooks that will substantively affect the rights, roles, or responsibilities of such full-time faculty before the policy change is adopted. The administration will carefully consider all comments received before deciding whether to implement the change.

Policy changes that are mandated by federal or state law or by the University’s Board of Regents, or changes that do not substantively affect the rights, roles or responsibilities of full-time faculty (such as parking and traffic regulations, athletic event ticket policies, faculty benefits policies, Center for Human Resources policies, and travel and reimbursement policies) may not be subject to the period of review and
comment. Nothing in this provision is intended to supersede the authority set forth in the By-laws of the University concerning the right of final decision on all institutional matters.


(Accepted July 2006)

The administration of Seaver College will give the Seaver Faculty Association Executive Committee prior notice of proposed policy changes that impact the academic enterprise and are specific to Seaver College. The SFA Executive Committee can recommend modifications or amendments to proposed policy changes, and/or request that notice be given to full-time faculty members for review and comment. Comments from the Executive Committee are due within 30 days of notification; comments on matters referred to the faculty are due within 45 days of the administrative notification. When faculty notice and comment does occur, the
administration will carefully consider such comments in possible revision of the policy. This consideration of faculty opinion is not meant to supersede the authority of the University concerning final decisions on institutional matters.

Until further review, College policies shaped by committees with elected faculty representatives will be exempt from prior notice standards.

(Approved 4/24/02; Revised 10/15/03)


For many reasons, including budget and insurance and risk management, the University distinguishes between “university-sponsored events” and “non-university-sponsored events.” In brief, some events are clearly university-sponsored events (e.g., the Annual Pepperdine Lectures, Summer Youth Leadership Conference, etc.). These events, initiated by and directed by University officials, enjoy access to University facilities at minimal or no cost. Other campus events are not formally university-sponsored events. These educational events, sponsored by organizations, clubs, churches, external to the university, rent our facilities, typically through the Special Programs Office. These organizations are required to enter into a written agreement with the University and also pay fees for the use campus facilities, as determined by the Special Programs Office.

For a complete explication of the of the University policy governing University sponsored or non-University sponsored events, see http://www.pepperdine.edu/about/administration/provost/content/policies/jointeventspolicy.pdf



(Included since 2017)

As a Christian University affiliated with the Churches of Christ, Pepperdine treats everyone with the respect and kindness that we have been called to show one another. The University community is a space where lives intersect and knowledge is discovered, which fortifies the strength found in our differences and uncovers the virtues revealed in diversity, unity, and restoration. To that end, Pepperdine is committed to fostering an environment free from discrimination as described in California Education Code Section 66270 and reserves its right to remain a Christian University by favoring co-religionists in its admissions decisions.

(Included since 2000; modified 2014)

1. According to the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, employers must request documentation to establish both work authorization and the identity of new hires. The University requires certification of the right to work in the United States at the start of work. Documentation required for certification of employability is at

2. Faculty members must present documentation upon acceptance of an offer of employment or within three days of the start of their contract. Failure to provide documents in a timely fashion will result in the suspension and/or termination of the faculty member's employment.

For more information or clarification on this mandatory verification of all new hires, please refer to http://www.pepperdine.edu/hr/new-employees/proof.htm


(Included since 1991; modified 2007; 2012; 2014)

The University considers the safety of its students, faculty, staff, and visitors to be of the highest priority. Accident prevention is a function of good management and contributes to a positive educational and work environment. The quality of service at the University is directly affected by each individual's commitment to performing his or her role in a safe and efficient manner. Achieving a safe campus environment at each University location is one of the University's safety program goals.

Each department head is responsible for maintaining safe and healthful conditions in his or her area. Faculty and staff must understand that safety is given a higher priority than expedience and unsafe shortcuts are not to be tolerated. Each supervisor is charged with effectively implementing the University's safety program, as well as the safe practices uniquely applicable to the specific jobs and tasks in their department. Effective implementation includes investigating actual and potential accident causes and promptly recommending corrective measures. Performance evaluations should include the success or failure of each supervisor in fulfilling these responsibilities. All University community members are encouraged to report immediately any unsafe conditions and make suggestions to their respective supervisors or departmental safety committees, as applicable. Additionally, employees may report unsafe conditions to the Office of Insurance and Risk, Human Resources, or the Department of Public Safety.

The Safety and Hazardous Substance Policy is available in Section 30 of the University Policy Manual at http://community.pepperdine.edu/hr/policies/policymanual.htm#thirty.4.

(Adopted 1990; included since 2000; updated 2006, updated 2017)

The selection of academic officers and faculty of Pepperdine University is a process of greatest importance in fulfilling the mission of the University. The University seeks to provide the highest quality educational programs and to combine academic excellence with spiritual values as an expression of the rich heritage of Christian service, aims that are crucially important to the preservation of the highest ideals of America’s heritage. Therefore, the following procedures are designed to be followed in keeping with the principle expressed in the Mission Statement of the University. By accepting a part in the selection of certain academic officers and faculty, all individuals thereby agree to support and implement the Mission Statement in the selection process.

1. In the selection of academic officers and faculty, the University wishes to follow procedures that provide meaningful participation at each level of responsibility within the University. A spirit of mutual respect, trust, and cooperation should characterize this endeavor.

2. Under the governance structure set forth in the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws of Pepperdine University, the administration has the responsibility of leading the institution so as to assure the preservation of the University’s heritage. The Articles of Incorporation specifically state the Religious Standards Committee of the Board of Regents has exclusive authority to set guidelines with reference to employment of
faculty. The administration is responsible to this committee for following its directives.

3. Within the policies established by the regents, the administration and the faculty will cooperate in the selection of specified personnel as outlined in the following paragraphs. It is understood that each committee will have the responsibility to consider qualified, available candidates, to evaluate fairly the various candidates, to prepare summaries of the strengths and weaknesses of all candidates who are given serious consideration, and to submit their recommendations in writing to the administration. It is further understood that the procedures outlined in this document constitute a method of having the faculty make recommendations about hiring for various positions and not a mechanism for faculty voting, in the expectation that the vote will be tantamount to a decision. The administration will make final decisions and appointments, but will do so after considering the recommendations of the appropriate committees. In such instance of a position to be filled, potential candidates for the position may be proposed by the faculty and/or the administration.

4. In the event a vacancy exists in the office designated as chairperson of any committee, the president or the provost of the institution will select the individual to serve as chairperson. In the event that any administrative officer included below as a member of a committee is unavailable due to a vacancy in the office, the administration may appoint another administrator to serve on the committee.

a. Dean of Seaver College

In the event that Seaver College seeks to fill the post of dean, the administration will appoint a review committee. The provost of the University will serve as chairperson of the committee. This committee will be limited to a maximum of seven members, three of whom include the following: the president of the Faculty Association, the president-elect of the Faculty Association, and one academic divisional dean to be selected by the divisional deans. The administration will have the responsibility of deciding on the four other members, at least one of whom shall be a faculty member of Seaver College.

The process for selecting an Associate Dean is not specified.

b. Academic Divisional Dean

In the event that Seaver College seeks to select an academic division chairperson, a review committee will be appointed according to the following procedures. The Dean of Seaver College will serve as chairperson, and the committee will be composed of four other members: the Associate Dean of Seaver College and three faculty members from the appropriate division. Two of the faculty members will be selected by the division faculty and one by the president and provost of the University. As a part of the procedures in evaluating those who are being considered for the position, the chairperson of the review committee will consult all of the  full-time faculty of the appropriate division before making a recommendation.

c. Faculty

In the event that an academic division of Seaver College seeks to appoint new faculty, a review committee will be established. The chairperson of the committee will be the divisional dean of the academic division and the committee will be composed of three members: an Associate Dean of Seaver College and two full-time faculty members selected by the division, preferably from within the particular discipline in which new faculty are sought. Every candidate pool should seek to include women, persons of color, and members of the Churches of Christ. As part of the evaluation process, the chairperson will consult all full-time faculty in the discipline in which the new faculty member is to be selected. Other full-time faculty in the division will be notified by the chairperson of the proposed appointment and will be given an opportunity to express their opinions. All candidates when given an on-campus interview will make at least two presentations: one to the faculty and another to students. The Dean of Seaver College shall be an ex officio member of the committee.

10.11.  SMOKING
(Included since 1988; modified 2000; 2012; 2014)

All Pepperdine University campuses are smoke-free at all times and smoking, including e-cigarettes, is strictly prohibited with the exception of any limited, designated areas where smoking may be permitted for some period, while moving toward the goal of a 100% smoke-free campus. This prohibition includes but is not limited to the interior of University facilities, outdoor areas, and undeveloped property, as well as in any vehicle owned, leased, or operated by the University. Also, the sale, distribution, and advertisement of, or sponsorship by tobacco products is prohibited anywhere on campus, at University-sponsored events, or in publications produced by the University. This policy applies to all persons on a Pepperdine University campus.

All members of the University community share in the responsibility of adhering to and enforcing this policy. The success of this policy depends upon the thoughtfulness, consideration, and cooperation of those who smoke and those who do not. Informational rather than punitive enforcement is the intent of this policy. However, repeated violations of the smoking policy, such as smoking on campus other than at a designated smoking location, may result in intervention by the Department of Public Safety, discipline by the supervisor in the case of an employee, or discipline by the applicable dean's office in the case of a student.

For detailed policy please visit: http://community.pepperdine.edu/hr/policies/policymanual.htm#thirtyfour.

(Included since 1989; modified 2000; revised 2001; modified 2012)

In keeping with the mission of the University and its commitment to provide an alcohol and drug-free environment, a policy prohibiting substance abuse has been established. This policy applies to all employees, including those persons who are classified as faculty members, staff members, and students.

The University provides assistance to those employees who are dealing with personal and family drug or related problems. (See Faculty Benefits section of this handbook.) The University's policy prohibiting substance abuse may be found at http://www.pepperdine.edu/about/administration/provost/content/policies/substabuse.pdf or http://community.pepperdine.edu/hr/policies/policymanual.htm#5-2.

(Included since 1988)

Faculty members, either individually or collectively, shall not, without the written consent of the University administration, use any name or logo of the University in connection with any activity of any kind beyond the scope of their duties as employees of the University.

Full-time faculty members may, as part of their professional role, need to write letters on behalf of students to support research efforts or recommend students to graduate schools. Such letters may be written on University letterhead as long as they are signed by the professor. Under no circumstances may a student be permitted to use the University's name or letterhead for the purpose of supporting his or her own academic work.