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EIU Office of Internal Auditing

#91 - Student Publications

Approved: May 20, 1992

Monitor: Vice President for Academic Affairs

General Guidelines

Student publications, a student newspaper and related publications, an annual, and a literary magazine, are under the general administration of the University President through the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Operations are generally supervised and governed by policies established by the Student-Faculty Student Publications Board.

Student publications are designed to provide students with the opportunity to communicate information and to express ideas and serve as support for academic programs.

The University endorses the principle of freedom of expression and recognizes obligations, legal and ethical, common to all publications of high quality. Responsible communication is expected to be the goal of student publications.

Advisory Responsibility

The University advisors of student publications are responsible for promoting high quality of the publications and will make recommendations to the Publications Board on the recruitment and selection of staff.

The advisor of a student publication is expected to subscribe and adhere to the Code of Ethics of the College Media Advisors as revised October 1983.

Editor-Advisor Copy Responsibility

The advisor of a student publication is responsible for exercising prudent advising in all areas, including those of libel and/or obscenity in copy or graphic material proposed for publication. An advisor has the responsibility to guide and advise student staffs in striving to achieve professional standards of conduct. It is not the intent that an advisor restrict or inhibit the airing of unpopular views and tedious subject per se. It is the intent that freedom of the press be afforded within the confines of the law.

Should a question regarding publication content not be resolved by the advisor and the editor, or should any student or members of the publications staff believe that decisions regarding copy or graphic materials have not been resolved satisfactorily, then an appeal in writing may be submitted to the Publications Board.

Should resolution not occur at the Publications Board level, then either the editor, the advisor, and/or the Publications Board may submit a request to the President, or designated representative, for review and resolution.

Student Staff Responsibility

The foremost principles to which the University commits itself are academic freedom and freedom of the press. These principles are an affirmation of the conviction that the search for truth is conducted best when all are given the opportunity to be heard.

Each student publication staff member has the right to free expression of unpopular and unorthodox ideas provided he/she remains within the bounds of constitutionally protected expression. The following principles are suggested as guidelines to those associated with student publications.

  1. Confident reliance upon intelligent discussion as opposed to coercion and diatribe and distortion;
  2. Courage to express honest conviction and readiness to raise sensitive issues;
  3. Respect for the opinions of others;
  4. Competence and accuracy in observing and reporting, in interpreting and writing;
  5. Regard for honesty, courtesy and good taste; and
  6. Avoidance of defamation of character, slander, malice and bad taste.
  7. Editorial policy will be the specific responsibility of the staff of each publication.

New Student Media Organizations

Proposals for the authorization of new student publications and/or the discontinuance of existing ones shall be submitted first to the Publications Board. Recommendations of that body will be considered by all pertinent advisory bodies and staff prior to ultimate decision by the President of the University.

Complaint Procedure

Any student(s) who wishes to present a matter concerning student publication may do so by written communication to the Publications Board. It is recommended that the student publication distributed most frequently on campus include, at least once each academic term, an announcement by the Publications Board of this procedure. The announcement shall include the name and address of the person to whom the matter may be presented.

Financing of Publications

Student publications are funded through the University operating budget, Student Activity Fees, revenue from advertising and subscriptions and other external funds.

Publications approved for financing through the use of student activity funds must submit annual budgets to the Publications Board which shall have jurisdiction over recommending the allocation of funds under University procedures for the administration of such funds.

The submission of the budget requests to the Publications Board shall be the responsibility of the Coordinator of Student Publications. The Publications Board shall forward the request to the Vice President for Academic Affairs who may confer with the Vice President for Student Affairs before making a recommendation to the President.

Funds derived from other sources, such as advertising, shall be considered a part of the budget of each publication.

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