Intellectual Property Policy


Dedicated as it is to teaching, learning, and creative activity, The College of Idaho respects the intellectual property of those outside the College and seeks to clarify rights and responsibilities pertaining to intellectual property created by members within the College community. The purpose of this policy is to delineate the specific allocation or sharing of intellectual property rights.


Intellectual Property for the purposes of this policy is any of the following:

  1. Copyrightable material that is the product of creative and scholarly activity. Examples include but are not restricted to such written materials as manuscripts, manuals, books, plays, poems, and articles;
  2. images in print, art media, photography, or electronic format; music such as sound recordings, lyrics, or musical scores; and computer software such as programs, smart phone applications, databases, web pages, and courseware.
  3. Patentable works such as machines, processes, materials, biological agents, devices, and software excluded from copyright.
  4. Trademarked and service-marked materials such as words, names, logos, domains, slogans, or words adopted by the College in its own promotional identity.

Respect for the Intellectual Property of Others

All members of the College community shall be individually responsible for the proper and fair use of the intellectual property of others. It is incumbent on the individual to know and to apply sound scholarly principles in crediting others for their ideas in the spirit of the College of Idaho Honor Code. The individual is likewise responsible for the fair use of copyrighted materials. Pirating or other unauthorized use of such materials is strictly prohibited. Failure to abide by the principles of properly credited and fair use of such materials subjects a member of the community to possible sanction under disciplinary policies in place elsewhere within the College.

General Rule for Protection of Community Members' Intellectual Property

The College of Idaho encourages creative work by all its members. All work in the normal course of educational activity that does not involve a specific and substantial outlay of College funds or of College-administered funds from an external agency are the property of the author, inventor, or creator, except as indicated below. Where ownership of intellectual property is to be owned by the College, the author, inventor or creator will reasonably cooperate in the execution of any applications, notices, assignments or other documents necessary to acquire, perfect or register the intellectual property in the name of the College.

    1. Commissioned Works of Non-Employees
      Work products contracted for from outside parties are, unless otherwise stipulated in writing, the intellectual property of the person contracted. For the College to own the intellectual property of non-employees, such ownership must be stipulated in the contract commissioning the work.

    2. Commissioned Work from Faculty, Employees or Students
      It is sometimes in the College's interest to commission work from members within its community for its own purposes—e.g., for celebration or promotion. Such works, whether paid or unpaid or submitted subject to the terms of a competition, shall belong to the College, unless otherwise so specified in writing by the College.. For example, a student poem created in a classroom or during free time belongs to the student (under the General Rule), but a poem selected as winner in a “125th College Anniversary Poetry Contest” belongs to the College unless the terms of the contest expressly provide otherwise. A faculty member's painting done as part of normal creative activity belongs to the faculty member (again, under the General Rule), but a poster commissioned from that same faculty member to advertise a College event belongs to the College. For commissioned works owned by the College, the creator is granted a retained limited license to incorporate his or her work into portfolios or other promotional materials to advertise or promote the creator's work. The terms of such limited license do not permit commercial use or commercial reproduction of the work.

    3. Institutional Works
      The College retains ownership of works created for College purposes in the course of the writer's, inventor's, or creator's day-to-day employment. Any such work assigned to staff artists, programmers, video camera operators, or communications personnel as part of their regular duties belongs to the College. Students paid or given specific academic credit by the College for videotaping or blogging cede their intellectual property rights to such materials to the College. For these works also, the creator is granted a retained limited license to incorporate his or her work into portfolios or other promotional materials to advertise or promote the creator's work. The terms of such limited license do not permit commercial use or commercial reproduction of the work.

    4. Scholarly or Research Projects Specifically and Substantially Funded by the College or Outside Agency
      Sometimes the College devotes substantial resources to a project by special dedication of additional funding or by a significant allocation of support staff, instrumentation, or facilities. Where the funding or support for such projects comes from an outside agency or foundation, the researcher or creator must abide by the intellectual property provisions, if any, stipulated by the funding agency. College staff can help in interpreting such policies, but it is the final responsibility of the grantee to understand and to abide by the intellectual policy provisions of his or her grant. If the agreement does not specify ownership of the intellectual property, the College's General Rule will prevail.
      Where the specific and substantial funding or support comes from College resources, the College will ask participants to sign an agreement on allocation of intellectual property rights as between the College and the participants.

    5. College of Idaho Name, Seal, or Logos
      Faculty, staff, and students may use The College of Idaho's name, seal, logos, or other marks to identify themselves and the institution in the course of official College business, in accordance with standards described in the College's visual identity guidelines (available from the Office of Marketing and Communications). For personal purposes, no seal or logo may be used. Personal use of the College name must be restricted only to purposes of identification: e.g., “Jane Doe, Professor of Physics, The College of Idaho”; or “John Doe, Class of '83, The College of Idaho.” No use of College identifiers that might imply College endorsement or responsibility for events or activities shall be allowed except by the express, written consent of the President. Any and all use of the College name, seal, logos, or other marks for commercial purposes is prohibited unless approved contractually by the Vice President for Finance or specifically authorized in writing by the President.

Note: The above policy was drawn from policies promulgated by Tufts University, Washington and Lee University, and Reed College. None of these policies were copyrighted.