University Policy


Development, Approval and Administration of University Policies

Approval Date: 2015-03-12

Effective Date: 2015-03-12

Review Date: 2019-03-12


Board of Regents


To define a coordinated and consistent process for identification, development, approval, dissemination and administration of all non-academic University policies.


All University policy and related procedures except academic policies and regulations which are contained in the University's Academic Calendar and Board of Regents' policies which are intended to guide the operation of the Senate and the Board, respectively.


Sponsor — A senior administrator, normally a Vice-President, with overall responsibility for an assigned policy including: drafting the policy; carrying out appropriate consultation/assessment; evaluating implications of the policy including risks and costs, and seeking legal advice, where appropriate; developing and carrying out the communications plan and the implementation plan; writing any related procedures; monitoring compliance through regular review of the policy. The sponsor may designate a delegate, who must be named.

Unit — Academic or administrative unit as defined in the University Calendar.

University — Memorial University of Newfoundland.

VPC — Vice-Presidents Council.


Policies exist to ensure that the University's processes and practices align with the University's vision, mission and values, regulatory and governance environment and need for change. They describe the University's position on a particular issue. Procedures for implementation, communication and compliance monitoring should be developed for each policy.

A University policy:

  • states the University's position on issues which have university-wide application;
  • reflects and upholds the University's governing principles;
  • identifies and prescribes compliance with applicable laws, regulations, and other policies;
  • promotes operational efficiencies;
  • enhances the University's mission and institutional plans and/or reduces institutional risk;
  • provides decision-makers with limits, alternatives and guidance;
  • changes infrequently.

Non-academic University policies require the approval of the Board of Regents.

Units may develop local policies that have applicability within their unit, as long as the policies are consistent with University-wide policies and the development of the local policies follows the same principles for development, consultation, approval, dissemination and review as the University-wide policies.

Procedures facilitate the implementation of policies. Each procedure is assigned a Responsible Unit, for administration and oversight.

For new policies, the relevant procedures shall be developed and approved concurrent with the new policy development so that the policy can be implemented once approved.

For revised policies, any new relevant procedures as well as any revisions to existing relevant procedures shall be developed and approved concurrent with the policy revision.

Revising or introducing new procedures, independent of revising the linked policy(ies), requires the approval of the Sponsor and appropriate consultation, normally, through the Procedures Advisory Group.

To ensure coordination of policies and procedures, procedures, when published, will be appropriately linked to the relevant policy(ies).

Process for the Development, Approval and Administration of Policy and Procedures:

1. Approval of Concept
Any member of the University community may propose that a new University policy, or revision to an existing policy, is required. Such a proposal must contain a well-crafted rationale, recommend a sponsor for the policy, outline a timeline for development and approval, and have the support of the appropriate Head who will submit the proposal to the appropriate Vice-President. Once approved by the Vice-President, the proposal will be vetted by the VPC who, following an assessment of need, will determine whether policy development proceeds and if so will assign a sponsor; it may provide advice on how to proceed.

2. Drafting and Consultation
The sponsor has the responsibility for researching and drafting, using a common format, the policy or policy changes, drafting relevant procedures, if any (for new policies), developing a communications plan and an implementation plan. The sponsor is also responsible for carrying out appropriate consultations/assessments, for evaluating the implications of the policy including potential risks and costs, and where appropriate, for seeking legal advice.

3. Recommendation for Approval
The sponsor will forward the draft policy/policy revision (and relevant procedures, in the case of new policies) to the VPC for review and for subsequent forwarding to the President. Where appropriate, the Senate may be asked to review and assess a policy submission.

4. Implementation
Once approved by the Board, implementation of the new policy/revised policy will proceed including: communicating the approval to all relevant units and employees, arranging and delivering appropriate training, monitoring compliance, etc.

5. Review of Policies
The policy sponsor conducts a review of his/her policies every four years to identify anachronisms, gaps and potential overlaps and to monitor the effectiveness of the ongoing administration of the policies. The results of the review are reported to the VPC.

6. Review of Procedures:
The Responsible Unit conducts a review of its assigned procedures when technological, operational or organizational changes occur, or at least as often as the parent policy is reviewed, to ensure the procedures are current and relevant. 

7. Maintenance of the Policy Portfolio
The Office of the Board of Regents has responsibility for the curatorial aspects of all policies and procedures, i.e., keeping a directory of the approved policies and ensuring that they are available on the University's web site. This on-line version of policies and procedures will be the official version and there will be only one on-line version.

Incidental Amendments
The VPC has authority to make incidental amendments to policy documents, which do not alter the meaning of the policy, such as adding definitions for clarity or consistency, and making secondary changes resulting from other related policies and governance decisions being adopted.

Related Documents

Policies and Procedures Framework
Policy Proposal Template


There are no procedures associated with this policy.

For inquiries related to this policy:

Office of the Board of Regents:  709-864-3289.


The President



Previous Versions:

There is at least one previous version of this policy. Contact the Policy Office to view earlier version(s)

Approval Date: 2011-07-07
Effective Date: 2011-07-07
Approval Date: 2010-03-25
Effective Date: 2010-03-25
Approval Date: 2007-09-06
Effective Date: 2007-09-06


University Policies

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000