Augsburg’s Written Plan for P2P/HEOA

As a result of the issuing of regulations by the Department of Education detailing the specifics of what institutions will be expected to do in order to comply with the requirements of Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA), Information Technology at Augsburg University has taken the following steps in order to demonstrate good faith in doing due diligence to comply with the HEOA regulations. The technological issues in HEOA all relate to issues surrounding the distribution of copyrighted materials. Following are the three main requirements with a brief explanation following each one stating what action steps Augsburg University is taking:

1. Make an annual disclosure that informs students that the illegal distribution of copyrighted materials may subject students to criminal and civil penalties and that describes the steps Augsburg will take to detect and punish illegal distribution of copyright materials.

ACTION: Annually, during the week following spring break, a message to students will go out from the Information Technology Department informing students about university policy related to the use of copyrighted material and the steps the University will take to enforce its policies. In addition to this message Augsburg has an Acceptable Use Policy and has implemented a specific policy to handle DMCA notices that are available on Augsburg’s student technology website.   This policy and set of procedures complies with the requirements of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

2. Certify that we have developed plans to effectively combat the unauthorized distribution of copyright material.

ACTION: Augsburg’s IT Department has implemented a system of bandwidth monitoring to help deter illegal file sharing.  Known P2P traffic classes are being monitored for both inbound and outbound for the whole community.

The University’s policy also effectively combats the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials by users of our network through a vigorous program of accepting and responding to Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) notices. An initial notice triggers a contact from IT with the alleged offender asking the individual to remove the offending material and set any outbound share settings in file sharing programs to their minimum settings.  Students are required to meet with an IT staff person to verify that they have taken these actions and to be informed as to Augsburg’s policies around illegal file sharing.  A second notice triggers the same action with the addition of encouraging the student to remove their file sharing program.  A third (and any subsequent notices) will be referred to the VP of Student Affairs for possible disciplinary action.

3. “To the extent practicable,” offer alternatives to illegal file sharing.

ACTION: IT has a link to Educause’s resource page ( that contains links to sites where students may legally download music, video and images.  This link will be available on our website both on the written plan page and the DMCA notice page.  It will also be sent in the annual disclosure email to all students.

These three actions will be reviewed annually by IT each May and revised as necessary to remain in compliance. We will use an annual student survey to assess the overall effectiveness of the University’s policy and procedures to promote the legal use of copyrighted materials. Any changes to the policy and/or procedures will take effect at the commencement of the following academic year.

Revision History 

Revision Change Date
1.0 Original Version 2/1/2010
1.1 Revision history section added 2/20/2014
1.2 Annual review 1/12/2023