Computing Priorities: Research and Instructional

Policy Number: 
Reason for Policy: 

This policy outlines the university’s priorities regarding computing necessary to support research and instruction.

Responsible Office: 

Chief Information Officer (541-346-1702) and Office of the Senior Vice President and Provost (541-346-3186).

Enactment & Revision History: 

10 November 2015 - Revised by the university president

01 July 2014 - Became UO Policy by operation of law (former OUS Policy 29)

24 February 1984 - Adopted by the Oregon State Board of Higher Education

  1. STRATEGIC VISION: The University shall develop and regularly update a strategic plan that is designed to place it at a competitive level of computing support to research and instruction.
  2. APPROPRIATE COMPUTING SUPPORT: The University shall maintain an appropriate computing environment to support all aspects of the University's mission and to remain competitive in research and instruction. With respect to teaching, this includes but is not limited to maintaining a suite of instructional software and hardware that will enable the effective use of technology in the classroom and as part of the broader pedagogical goals of education at the University. With respect to research, this includes but is not limited to maintaining an inventory of research computing infrastructure on campus with an eye toward identifying more efficient use of computing resources for all variety of computing needs, including but not limited to scientific computing, enterprise-level data management, and other research uses.
  1. EVALUATION OF COMPUTING RESOURCES: In the development, acquisition, and customization of new and existing computing infrastructure (including but not limited to software and hardware), those managing and purchasing resources should evaluate their systems on the basis of technical performance, support needs, and other usual measures. In addition, these evaluations should also involve inquiry into, and decisions on the basis of, the social and ethical impacts of computing infrastructure, including but not limited to: privacy, security, accessibility, usability, and sustainability. This is understood to imply that efforts should be made to develop and acquire systems that are: amenable to or implementing privacy-enhancing and confidentiality-preserving technologies where personally-identifiable data of any kind is at stake, designed with embedded security features, are affirmed by relevant user populations on campus to be more rather than less usable (particularly in the case of instructional computing solutions), and that do not needlessly consume energy.
  2. INSTRUCTIONAL COMPUTING PRIORITIES: Faculty making use of instructional software and hardware in their classes shall make use of existing university resources in the case that these are sufficient for their pedagogical needs. In cases where curriculum and learning needs would be enhanced in significant ways by employing third-party software or hardware, instructors shall make every reasonable effort to insure that the gains from these resources justify any associated expense, and that any such computing resources are employed consistent with university, state, and federal data policies (including but not limited to rules protecting privacy and confidentiality of personally-identifiable information). In cases of the instructional use of third-party software or hardware, instructors shall be attentive to any additional financial burdens for students required to purchase software and should make every reasonable effort to select systems that do not require students to pay for technology subscriptions, purchases, or licenses.
  3. FACULTY TRAINING: The development of basic computer literacy on the part of faculty should be considered an aspect of professional competence and is considered a faculty responsibility. To assist faculty in meeting this responsibility, the University is committed to offering regular training opportunities pertaining to both research-related and teaching-related computing, and considers participation in these trainings a form of service involving a contribution to faculty development.
  • Volume IV: Finance, Administration and Infrastructure
  • Chapter 6: Information technology