Intellectual Property Policy

Intellectual Property Policy for the College of William & Mary

The Commonwealth of Virginia requires that all State colleges and universities must have patent and copyright policies. These policies define the ownership of patents and copyrights, collectively "intellectual property created by State university employees and students.

The terms of this policy can be varied by specific contracts executed by the owner of the intellectual property under this policy.

This policy reflects judgments that are based on governing law, existing technologies, and the current goals, culture, programs and teaching practices of the College of William and Mary (the College). The appropriate policy will evolve as these factors change over time. In particular, practices involving the role of course software and related technologies are currently in a period of rapid change, and appropriate intellectual property policy in that area may change as well. As a result, the Provost will guide a process to review the policy every three years.

Be it resolved, that upon recommendation of the President, the Board of Visitors adopts this Intellectual Property Policy for the College of William and Mary in Virginia (effective October 23, 2007.)


The purpose of this policy is to define the ownership rights in copyrightable works of authorship and patentable inventions that are created by employees and students of the College, including the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS). The policy specifies conditions under which the College claims ownership of intellectual property.