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Pepperdine | Seaver College

CHAPTER VIII.  Administrative and Miscellaneous Policies

8.1.   Computer Crime

8.2.   Confidentiality

8.3.   Copyright and Patent Policy

8.4.   Equal Employment Opportunity/Nondiscrimination

8.5.   Faculty Notice and Comment Policy

8.6.   Harassment (Sexual)

8.7.   Jointly-Sponsored University Events

8.8.   Proof of Employability

8.9.   Selection of Specified Personnel and Faculty of Pepperdine University

8.10.   Smoking

8.11.    Substance Abuse

8.12.    Use of Name and Letterhead


(Included since 1988)

All computer users are advised that any misuse of University computers may be a felony under California Penal Code Section 502. The misuse of University computers includes, but is not limited to, illegal access to computer facilities; access or copying files or programs without the copyright owner's permission; use of computer resources for unauthorized purposes, to defraud or extort another, or to obtain money, property, or services with false or fraudulent intent, representations, or promises; or maliciously access, alter, delete, damage, or destroy any computer system, network, program, or data. For additional information consult the Computer Network Responsible Usage Policy at http://services.pepperdine.edu/it/policies/usagepolicy.htm.

(Included since 1988)

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.

(Included since 2000)

a. 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. Written works or software created by faculty members in discipline-related areas will be excepted from this
general rule and will be viewed by the University as the property of the author. The University shall, however, be entitled to use of the software without payment of copyright royalties or fees of any kind for use by the University for its purposes.

b. “Copyrightable materials” include the following: written works such as books, journal articles, texts, glossaries, bibliographies, study guides, laboratory manuals, syllabi, tests, and proposals; lectures, musical or dramatic compositions, and unpublished scripts; films, filmstrips, charts, transparencies, and other visual aids; video and audio tapes; live video or audio broadcasts; computer programs; pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works; sound recordings; and other similar materials.


Every invention or discovery or part thereof that results from research or other activities carried out at the University or that is developed with the aid of the University’s facilities, staff, or funds administered by the University shall be the property of the University. As a condition of employment or enrollment and
attendance, every invention or discovery shall be assigned to the University.


There may be instances in which University personnel create materials or inventions which would be University property under the terms of this policy but which the creator believes were created under unique circumstances deserving of special consideration. In such instances, personnel may submit a written petition explaining the exceptional circumstances to the vice president over his or her department. The appropriate vice president will review the petition and issue a written determination regarding ownership rights in the material. If this determination is unsatisfactory to the petitioning party, final appeal may be made to the office of the president of the University.


(Included since 1978; revised 2001)

1. Pepperdine University is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of any status or condition protected by applicable federal or state law in the administration of its educational policies, admission, financial assistance, employment, educational programs, or activities. 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.

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

3. The University Equal Opportunity Officer is responsible for the coordination of nondiscrimination efforts and the monitoring of employee and student complaints alleging discrimination. The Equal Opportunity Office is located in the Charles B. Thornton Administrative Center at Malibu; the telephone number is (310) 506-4208.  Grievances should be directed to the appropriate school or department, and complainants are encouraged to exhaust those procedures before seeking relief outside the University.


(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.

(Included since 1989; modified 2000; revised 2002)

It is the policy of Pepperdine University to condemn any and all conduct on the part of its employees which encompasses sexual harassment. In order to provide the University's academic community with a clearer statement of the proper standard of conduct for its members, a policy prohibiting sexual harassment has been established. A statement of the policy is found at http://services.pepperdine.edu/hr/resources/policies/policymanual.htm#11-5

Assistance and counsel are available through the University's Equal Opportunity Office, x4208, or the Center for Human Resources, x4397.

(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/JointEventsPolicy.pdf

(Included since 2000)

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. The Dean's Office is responsible for the record keeping of all the documents provided by the full-time and part-time faculty at the time of hire. Therefore, faculty members identity upon acceptance of an offer of employment or within three working days from the time they begin work. Failure to provide required 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

(Adopted 1990; included since 2000; updated 2006)

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 division chairperson to be selected by the chairs. 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 Division Chairperson

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 chairperson 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.

(Included since 1988; modified 2000)

As a general policy, Pepperdine University discourages the use of tobacco. Smoking is not permitted in any University building, including faculty offices and the faculty dining room. This includes hallways, breezeways, patios, balconies, loading docks, and doorways. Smoking is prohibited within twenty feet of all entrances to University buildings and ventilation systems. Smoking is also prohibited in all University-controlled vehicles and indoor and outdoor athletic or other on-campus events.

(Included since 1989; modified 2000; revised 2001)

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 student workers.

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/hr/policies/manual/#33-0.

(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.