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DU Research & Scholarship

Office of Research & Scholarship

Intellectual Property

Technology Transfer

Student IP


When do I own my IP?

As a general rule, students will own the things that they create. If you create something on your own time, outside of DU, that creation belongs to you. Additionally, anything that you create as an ordinary part of class (essays, poems, presentations, etc.) belongs to you as well. If your work in class is part of sponsored research project, you will own your creations unless the sponsor of the research project has made a different agreement.

When does the University own my IP?

In accordance with DU's Intellectual Property Policy, the university will own student-created IP if the student is provided with substantial university assistance. Substantial assistance occurs when students are given resources that are beyond the scope of those that are ordinarily provided. This would include extensive guidance from faculty or staff or access to resources that are not available to students during typical coursework. Use of DU's libraries, computers, or classroom spaces will NOT constitute substantial use.

Who owns IP in a senior design project?

Because this is considered class work and not "substantial assistance," the same rules of ownership will generally apply: student creations in a senior design project will belong to the student, not to DU. However, industry partners in the senior design program may have an agreement to own IP resulting from their sponsorship. Your supervising faculty should be able to tell you if such an agreement exists.