Preferred Name Guidelines

Use of Preferred Names

Portland State University supports the use of preferred names for students, faculty and staff while maintaining the official, legal name required for academic records and data integrity.

This effort is in support of:

  • the transgender and gender-inclusive population at PSU;
  • the desire for faculty and staff to be known by a professional or published name; and
  • the desire for a casual name reference from the PSU population at large.

Preferred Name Display

Currently, the following systems will display preferred name instead of legal name:

  • PSU Faculty Staff Directory - search and display of name
  • D2L - Desire2Learn greeting and display during student interaction
  • Google Apps @ PSU - Display name associated with email, calendar, Google docs
  • DataMASTER Class Roster reports - will display Preferred Only or both Preferred and Legal
  • Banweb - class rosters and grading rosters

Preferred Names for Students - First Name Only

Current students may add or change a preferred first name by submitting the View/Update Preferred Name form, located online in the PSU Information System.

Students who wish to change their legal name with the university may do so by downloading, completing, and submitting the Student Information Change Form, along with proof of name change to the Office of the Registrar.

Preferred Names for Faculty/Staff - First and/or Last Name

Non-student employees may self-identify preferred first and/or last name, in addition to their legal name as presented on their Social Security Card.  Employees may add or change a preferred name by submitting the View/Update Preferred Name form, located online in the PSU Information System.

Employees who wish to change their legal name with the university may do so by visiting the Human Resources Office with their new Social Security Card.

Preferred Name Data Standards

Requests to add or change a preferred name are limited to once per term for students. Preferred names must adhere to database character standards used by university systems.
 
Although students and employees are generally free to determine the preferred names they wish to be known by, inappropriate use of the preferred name policy (including but not limited to avoiding a legal obligation or misrepresentation) may be cause for denying the request. PSU reserves the right to remove a preferred name if it is used inappropriately.

First Name Override

If you would like to use a different first name, in order to affirm your gender identity, but have not made a legal name change, you may submit a First Name Override form. This will ensure that your legal first name will not appear alongside your preferred first name on class rosters or in other university spaces.

There are several records that will continue to reference your legal first name, including official transcripts, financial aid documents, tax documents, payroll reporting, and immigration documents. If you are a student wishing to override your legal first name submit your completed form to the Queer Resource Center or the Registrar's Office. If you are staff or faculty, submit your completed form to Human Resources. We will need to verify your identity and legal name by reviewing your government-issued ID, such as a driver's license, Social Security card, or passport.