You are here: American University Provost Memorandums of Agreement (MOA) Frequently Asked Questions

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Ellen Klene
Senior Director of Contracts and Administration

Office of the Provost 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016 United States

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA)?
An MOA is a written document describing a collaborative relationship between two parties wishing to work together. An MOA serves as a legal document that details the obligations and commitments of the parties and allocates and minimizes each party’s risks. 

When is a MOA needed?
American University requires an MOA to be in place with partners before faculty, staff and students can engage in any collaborations, including but not limited to research, educational and professional development services, student exchanges and any other academic activities. 

Can anyone start a MOA with another partner?
American University encourages faculty and staff to enter into partnerships that would benefit the university in furtherance of its mission. Each unit/school has designated staff members who are familiar with the MOA process. Faculty and staff considering a partnership with another organization should contact the designated persons in their unit/school and work with them in this process. 

How do I know who can help me with a new MOA in my unit/school?
Check the MOA contact list on this website to find the contact information for your unit's/school's MOA person(s). If you do not find a contact person listed for your unit, please contact your budget staff member or the Office of the Provost's MOA Administrator.

Is there a standard MOA template that I should be using?
Yes, the official MOA templates are found on this website. These have been approved by the Office of General Counsel. 

How do I submit a MOA for review and approval?
MOAs are to be submitted for review and approval through the MOA SharePoint system. Only designated persons have access to this system. If you are not an MOA designated person, you must work with your unit's designated person on the process of developing the MOA and submitting it for review and approval. Please see the Guidelines Governing MOAs for the whole process which should be followed when creating an MOA.

Whom do I contact to confirm if the organization I would like to start a partnership with already has an MOA with AU?
You can contact the MOA Administrator at the Office of the Provost to confirm if an MOA already exists with that organization.

Who is authorized to sign an MOA for American University?
The Office of the Provost oversees the MOAs for units under Academic Affairs. All MOAs that have an academic component are to be reviewed and signed by the University Provost. The Vice Provost for Academic Administration also has the power of attorney to review and approve MOAs on behalf of the Provost.

What if the agreement has nothing to do with academic programs?
If you must sign a contractual agreement for goods or services to be provided to the university, please contact the Procurement Office and work with the Senior Director, Procurement and Contracts. If you are still unsure where the agreement you are trying to initiative would fall, please contact the MOA Administrator within the Office of the Provost.

Still have questions? Contact the MOA Administrator at