Student Publications

No. 7-9  Rev. 10-20-82 Date 4-20-77



In the following policies and procedures for the governance of Weber State University student publications, it is recognized that the student newspaper, Signpost, along with other student publications, furnishes a forum for the free exchange of ideas and provides an indispensable training ground for journalism students. These student publications are essentially academic endeavors and not activity oriented. Student publications are defined as those media funded from student activity fees or other university sources, but excluding handbooks and similar published material wholly concerned with more specific kinds of data (e.g. faculty evaluations, student government handbook, etc.).
Necessary conditions for the achievement of these objectives include the following:

(1) protection of the publications from financial failure


(2) assurance against prior censorship


(3) provision for continuance of the newspaper as a student-managed operation within the purview of the university


(4) retention of its character and function as a free but responsible critic of the university community and


(5) agreement on all sides that it maintain its value as an instructional resource for those students who operate it.


A. Policies and Procedures for Broad Governance
1. Responsibility for publication of the Signpost is delegated to the chairman of the Department of Communication, with the department chairman, Signpost advisor(s), and student editors constituting the editorial board for the newspaper. The Department of Communication is the publisher of the Signpost and as such is accountable for all the newspaper policies and procedures.

2. Responsibility for the literary magazine is delegated to the chairman of the English Department, with the department chairman, faculty advisor, and student editors constituting the editorial board for the magazine. The department of English is the publisher for the literary magazine and as such is accountable for all magazine policies and procedures.

3. The Department of Communication shall prepare specific guidelines identifying all aspects of Signpost editorial policy respecting the gathering, writing, illustrating, displaying, and publishing of news and advertising. The preamble to these guidelines shall be the "Code of Ethics" adopted in 1973 by the Society of Professional Journalists. Similar guidelines shall be prepared by the appropriate department for other student media.

4. The appropriate department shall establish effective procedures for the selection, evaluation, and removal of the chief editors and business managers of student publications. Removal procedures shall be governed by safeguards assuring due process.

5. Student publications at Weber State University are guaranteed basic press freedoms and prior censorship will not be imposed under any condition.

6. A Student Media Advisory Board shall be established to serve in an advisory capacity to the Communication and English Departments.

7. The Student Media Advisory Board shall be composed of the WSUSA public relations vice president, WSUSA activities vice president,WSUSA press secretary, the WSU vice president for university relations, the dean of Arts and Humanities, and at least six persons working full-time in the mass media outside of the university. The members of the board shall be appointed by the vice president for academic affairs upon the recommendation of the dean of Arts and Humanities. Department chairs, publications and broadcasting advisors, and principal student staff members will be invited to all meetings. Terms of appointment to the board (except those serving ex-officio) shall be for two years.

8. The Student Media Advisory Board shall convene at least twice per year to critique the student newspaper, magazine, and broadcast operations; to provide professional advice and evaluation of programs and publications; and generally to strengthen the student related media programs of the university.

9. Any new concepts (such as the yearbook, other magazines, etc.) should be developed under advisement of the Student Media Advisory Board. Full responsibility should be assigned to an appropriate department as determined by the WSU vice president for academic affairs. This department will be the publisher of the new publication and will be held accountable for all of the publication's policies and procedures.

B. Policy and Procedures for Financial Support

Financial support for the Signpost, literary magazine, and other publications as advised by the Student Media Advisory Board shall come from WSUSA appropriated instructional related funds, advertising revenues, and from general appropriations to the Communication and English Departments. Normally, advisory salaries (or release time assignments) shall be born by departmental budgets, with operating budgets and student editors' wages coming from advertising revenues and student government sources.

1. WSUSA funding devoted to the Signpost, literary magazine, and other student publications shall follow current procedures for instructional related funds.

2. No WSUSA funds will be used to cover any deficit spending for the different publications. The governing department will insure that each publication operates within its approved budget.

These policies and procedures are concerned primarily with three specific areas:

(1) the nature of the broad publications governance

(2) financial support and

(3) the role of the Student Media Advisory Board in the management of the newspaper.