This website contains official Policies, Procedures, and Standards applicable to the UNC Chapel Hill community.  This site is maintained by the Office of Ethics Education and Policy Management and is currently undergoing significant updates and changes. If you have a question about this site or the new Policy on Policies, please contact our office.

UNC-Chapel Hill’s Policy on Policies (POP) became effective on January 7, 2017 and replaces the previous Policy Development, Approval and Publication (PDAP) policy.  The new Policy on Policies creates a structure for consistency and clarity in UNC-Chapel Hill policy and supporting standards and procedures.

The following definitions apply:

Policy: A Policy at UNC-Chapel Hill is a written statement that mandates, specifies, or prohibits behavior in order to express basic values of the University, enhance the University’s mission, ensure coordinated compliance with applicable laws and regulations, promote operational efficiency, and/or reduce institutional risk. It includes criteria as mandated by the UNC-Chapel Hill Policy template. Clear ownership of the Policy is required—the owner should be a specific role within the Policy issuing unit.

Standards: The minimum acceptable limits or rules that may be used to achieve Policy implementation. While Procedures provide specific instructions for units (e.g, how to use specific applications to encrypt data in the HR department), Standards set overarching minimum requirements that must be met by all (e.g., minimum encryption strength for use with sensitive information throughout the university). Standards are created at the unit level and changes are not required to go through the same review or approval process as Policies, but Standards that impact multiple units may need additional review or feedback before being implemented.

Procedures: The specific operational steps required to accomplish an action that necessitates specific instructions. Procedures often pertain to implementing Policy. Procedures may also provide guidance for behavior on issues that are not dictated by Policy. Procedures are created at the unit level and changes do not go through the same review or approval process as Policies, but Procedures that impact multiple units may need additional review or feedback before being implemented.

University Policy: Has application throughout the University, informs someone outside the issuing unit of rights and responsibilities, or regulates the actions of the unit as it interacts with other units on campus.

Unit Policy: Has application only within the issuing unit (e.g. applies only to unit employees, staff, students and others working for or studying at the unit). A Unit Policy can create additional specifications, requirements, or restrictions but cannot contradict a University Policy, Procedure, or Standard.