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Guidelines for Establishing an Academic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

October 5, 2011

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is a non-binding document between Tulane University and a partner institution (typically another university) that describes an intended course of action between the institutions. In academic matters, these activities may include, but are not limited to: exchanges of faculty, staff or students; special tuition rates; joint non-credit instruction such as workshops or conferences; or the eventual establishment of special degree programs.

Tulane does not actively seek MOUs, nor are they required in order to initiate most institutional partnerships, but it recognizes that some institutions, especially international institutions, require MOUs before proceeding with formal agreements. As a result, the Office of Academic Affairs has developed the following guidelines which should be used to develop an academic MOU prior to signing.


A draft MOU must be provided by the partner institution and translated (if necessary) into English. An electronic version is preferable.

Approval Process

The draft MOU must be approved by the following offices prior to execution:

Office of Academic Affairs
Office of the General Counsel
Center for Global Education (if an international partner institution is involved)

One copy of the draft MOU must be submitted to one of the Associate Provosts for distribution and approval. Upon execution, a signed copy of the MOU must be provided to these three offices, as well as the Office of Public Relations.

Signature Authority

Only the President, Senior Vice Presidents, or their designees shall have the authority to sign and execute academic MOUs.


The draft MOU should be submitted to the Office of Academic Affairs at least SIX WEEKS prior to the intended date of execution.

Click here for a PDF version of these guidelines.