Applicable WSU policies and procedures


  • Proposals: All proposals for extramural support must be submitted through the Office of Research Support & Operations. An electronic routing and approval form (eRex) is required as the first step in the proposal submission process.
  • Grant awards: Grant awards must be made to “Washington State University” and must be signed by our authorized institutional official. See ORSO Guideline 1: Proposal Review, Processing, and Submission.
  • Gift Policy: Only designated personnel may accept gifts on behalf of the University from any source. Gifts solicited from any domestic or international individual or organization should be disclosed to the WSU Foundation.
  • Informal Agreements: Informal or unofficial agreements to restrict publication or sharing of research results are not permitted. WSU policy prohibits acceptance of publication restrictions in research, except in the case of unusual exceptions negotiated by University officials who have delegated authority to accept contracts and grants.
  • IT Security Laws: When traveling, know your destination’s IT security laws and practices with respect to monitoring of internet activity and accessing personal devices.
  • Loaner Laptops: Protecting your data while traveling is very important. Check with your department to see if a sanitized “loaner” laptop is available to help avoid exposing your data to inspection.
  • Intellectual Property: All employees are expected to promptly disclose all intellectual property and any improvements to existing intellectual property to the WSU Office of Commercialization through the Inventor Portal. Faculty should remind members of their group to do the same. Inventions must also be reported in federal grant progress reports.


Travel abroad

Detailed guidance regarding international travel can be found here.

Best practices for data security when traveling abroad

Protecting your data while traveling is very important. Know your destination’s IT security laws and practices. Some governments may monitor and store internet activity or copy data from your device without your consent. At your port of entry, some government authorities may request access to your electronic devices and accounts.

External Resources:

Bringing items and technologies abroad

Remember that everything you take with you while traveling abroad is considered an export, even if you bring it back. Before taking any WSU-owned items abroad (including laptops and corresponding software), and well in advance of travel, please contact WSU’s Export Control Officer to determine if an export license may be required for the particular country to which you are traveling. Many items will not require a license, or will qualify for a license exception, but this will depend on the items/technologies as well as the foreign entities and institutions involved. Add link to Export Control page.

Obtaining a Visa for international travel

WSU travelers engaged in WSU activity outside the United States must travel with the appropriate immigration documentation, including passport and visa where required. Non-U.S. citizen members of the WSU community who will return to campus following international travel should consult their sponsoring institution for required documents, signatures and US entry visa requirements. For assistance with obtaining the appropriate visa, use WSU’s preferred visa processing vendor, CIBT visas, via WSU’s CIBT Portal. WSU travelers may also refer to the Office of Global Support Service’s outbound travel visa site for information and guidance on visa categories and the general application process.

Safety and risk management

WSU travelers are encouraged to carry documentation related to their current travel (invitation letter, itinerary, etc.), even when using a valid entrance visa previously received, such as a multiple entry or year visa. WSU travelers are encouraged to review current travel alerts or advisories posted on the U.S. State Department’s website as well as the traveler’s respective home country’s embassy’s website (when applicable), for guidance on travel risks. When traveling to high risk countries, all academic appointees, staff, and trainees should follow the guidelines for travel to high-risk countries and register their travel with the University. Please see the International Travel Registry website for further information.


International visitors

Detailed guidance regarding international visitors can be found here.

Visiting scholars and researchers

WSU fully supports the hosting of visiting scholars and researchers from abroad. However, it is important to perform restricted party screening before issuing an invitation and sponsoring a visa, and to ensure that the proposed activities may be legally performed at WSU. Please contact the Office of International Programs Global Services Department for assistance with restricted party screening for international on-campus visitors at

It is also important to ensure that Visiting Scholars/Researchers understand WSU’s Patent Policy and limits on their use of WSU-owned Intellectual Property after they have returned to their home institutions.


It is important that all scholars and visitors on campus have the appropriate authorizations, especially when WSU is the sponsoring institution. For WSU-sponsored students or scholars, all U.S. immigration procedures should be coordinated through the WSU Office of International Programs. Once on campus, any change in the student or scholar’s department, field of study, access, funding, or any other immigration affirmations must be reported and coordinated through International Programs; otherwise they risk jeopardizing their visa status.

Lab tours

WSU welcomes visitors to the campus, including tours of our state-of-the art research facilities. Best practices for all international visitors include the following steps:

  • Perform restricted party screening on visitors prior to providing the tour.
  • Maintain a log of visitors to the lab.
  • Ensure that no confidential or proprietary information is visible at the time of the tour.
  • Prohibit the taking of photographs/video of lab equipment or lab set-up.
  • Do not permit visitors to insert thumb drives or other media into computers during the tour.
  • Ensure that visitors are escorted throughout the tour.


Intellectual property

Inventions and improvements to existing intellectual property must be promptly disclosed to the WSU Office of Commercialization through the Inventor Portal. Faculty should remind members of their group of this requirement. It is essential to disclose inventions properly before publishing or publicly presenting any material related to your invention. Failure to disclose your invention to WSU prior to publicly presenting or publishing your work may limit the ability to obtain patent protection outside the United States.

Intellectual property developed under a sponsored research agreement is subject to WSU policies on intellectual property [see Executive Policy 38 – University Policies on Intellectual Property, Technology Transfer, and Commercialization and Faculty Manual Section IV G. (Patent Policy), IV H. (Copyright Policy)].

Partnering with international institutions or organizations

Academic MOUs with foreign institutions should be reviewed by the Office of International Programs prior to signing. As part of this review process, the Office of International Programs will screen for restricted parties and institutions. Collaborative research MOUs should be routed through the Office of Research Support & Operations for review and signature. Most importantly, only those with appropriate signatory authority should be signing international agreements on behalf of WSU.


Outside activities

Washington State University encourages professional outside activity that allows the expertise of University faculty and staff to be available to society without interfering with University programs or academic freedom, and without leading to conflict of interest. For additional information, please see the Financial Conflict of Interest website and Executive Policy #27 University Research Personnel Conflict of Interest, Technology Transfer, and State Ethics Requirements.

For faculty members, approval is required for certain activities that go beyond ordinary relationships arising from normal duties, professional affiliations, and consulting agreements. Please see the WSU Faculty Manual Section IV D., Policy on Compensated Outside Service by Faculty Members and Section IV E., Extended Professional Activities.

Each WSU employee having commercial involvements in areas related to his or her University responsibilities must submit an annual summary of those activities to the approving supervisor as described in WSU Business Policies and Procedures Manual section 60.44.


Acceptance of sponsored projects and gifts

WSU supports its work in part with extramural support (grants and sponsored projects) and with gifts.

  • Extramural Support: All proposals for extramural support must be submitted through the Office of Research Support & Operations (ORSO). External support may include, but are not limited to, grants, contracts, subcontracts, funded collaboration agreements, clinical trial agreements, testing agreements, and service agreements. Awards must be made to “Washington State University” and must be signed by an authorized institutional official. Please see ORSO Guideline 1: Proposal Review, Processing, and Submission for more information.
  • Gifts: Only designated personnel may accept extramural support or gifts on behalf of the University. A gift is a voluntary contribution of external support by a donor to WSU, without any requirement of return for the contribution, whether economic or other. Gifts are processed through the WSU Foundation (WSUF). For guidance on determining whether incoming funding is extramural support or a gift, please see ORSO Guideline 5: Sponsored Projects and Gifts Guidelines.
  • Determine how the Donor/Sponsor shall provide funding to Washington State University Foundation (WSUF) or to Washington State University (WSU). Private gift funds must be processed through the WSUF. Private grant funds may be processed through either WSUF or WSU.