Preferred Name

A preferred name is the name a person wishes to be known as, especially if this name is different than their legal name. NDSU students, faculty and staff have the opportunity to set a preferred first name that best matches their self-identity.

Prospective Students

The offices of Admission, Student Success Programs, and Residence Life will use Preferred Name for the following communications sent from their departments. If Preferred Name is not provided, the Legal/Given First Name will be used in all communications prospective students and family members receive from NDSU. The use of Preferred Name will change once a student is enrolled in NDSU courses (see Current Students section below).

Prior to enrollment, if a Preferred Name is provided it will be used in:

  • All email, phone and text message communications to the student
  • All email, phone and text message communications to the student's family
  • All print communications including students’ official admission decision letter(s)
  • The mailing address of all mailed (print) communications
  • On the student's application and housing dashboards
Current Students

Preferred first names can be set independently by the student (see instructions below). For example, this could include a nickname based off a legal first or middle name, or a chosen name that best matches a person's gender self-identity. Individuals with names that include letters outside of the English alphabet can use those letters in their preferred names. If there is a desire to change a preferred last name, students need to contact Registration and Records.

Preferred names appear in many of the electronic systems students, faculty and staff use, including:

  • Blackboard Learning Management System
  • Online Directory
  • Class Roster/Grade Roster
  • Advisement Report
  • Diploma
  • Email display name*

*Please note: to change your actual email address and NDUS user ID to match your preferred Email display name, you will need to complete the steps on the following website to change your directory information.

  1. Log in to Campus Connection
  2. Click on the Profile tile
  3. Select Personal Details
  4. Click on the name with the Preferred type
  5. Update Preferred name, click "Save"
Legal Name Changes

If you wish to change your 'Legal' name in Campus Connection, you must complete a Name Change Request Form (available on the Forms page) and provide official documentation to the Office of Registration and Records, 110 Ceres Hall.