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Disposition Instructions

CAUTION: A state record may not be destroyed if any litigation, claim, negotiation, audit, open records request, administrative review, or other action involving the record is initiated before the expiration of a retention period for the record.  Disposition may not begin until the completion of the action and the resolution of all issues that arise from it, or until the expiration of the retention period, whichever is later. 

Open a new Records Disposition Log (RDL) and complete the form in Word. 

Note: If the form doesn't launch, check your download folder.  Some browsers are no longer automatically opening documents.

Step 1: Enter the name of the employee who is authorized to maintain and dispose university records (this cannot be a student).  Include the employee's title, contact information, and where on campus the office is located.


Open the RRS

Step 2:  Open the University's Records Retention Schedule (RRS).  Find the series that matches the records you wish to dispose.  Read the narrative to verify your records match the series description.  Note the retention period, and prepare to list only those records which have met the required retention period.

Columns 1, 2, and 3: Enter this information exactly as it appears on the RRS. Account for all copies of the record when preparing for disposition - paper and electronic. Only one line is required for each record series; there is no need to separate years or provide detailed inventories.


Hint: When looking at a records series on the Records Retention Schedule, scroll down until you see the blue table.  That information will help you complete the RDL correctly.

Check retention calculations

Columns 4 and 5: These dates indicate which records are to be disposed.  See the RRS for instructions for which dates to use in these columns. 

Use the Quick Retention Calculations (PDF) to determine which records have met the required retention period; dispose of records through that end date.  This list changes 3x a year, so be sure to check the effective dates on any printouts.

The document titled Entering Dates on the RDL (PDF) may also be useful.  If retention is defined by fiscal year, provide fiscal year (FY) dates.  If retention is defined by semester, list semester and year in those columns.

Note: If the documents aren't launching, check your download folder.  Some browsers are no longer automatically opening documents.

Common retention periods in effect through August 31, 2022:

  • FE+3   Dispose of records through FY2018.
  • AC+2   Where AC=end of semester, dispose of records through Spring 2020 (Spring 2022 was the last full semester completed.)  This date will change on the first day of Fall 2022 classes.
  • AC+5   Where AC=date of separation, dispose of records for individuals separated through the end of the previous month in 2017. (For example, if you are filling out an RDL in April 2022, you can dispose of records through March 2017.)
  • AC+7  Where AC=last semester attended, dispose of records through Spring 2015. (Spring 2022 was the last full semester completed.) Use this guideline for student-related records with a 7-year retention.



Column 6: Measure how many records are being disposed.  For paper records, measure the stack and report in inches.  For digital records, report however the system allows (number of files, amount of space freed, etc.). 

Indicate disposition method

Column 7: Indicate how the records will be disposed. Note that any sensitive or confidential information must be shredded; only public information can be discarded in the trash or recycled.  When in doubt, shred.

*Retention periods marked with an asterisk means those records may belong in the University Archives. 

e-Mail the RDL

Step 3: STOP.  Once the first two sections are complete, save the completed form and forward the Word document as an attachment via e-mail to for review and approval of the log.

Do not print, sign, or scan the document.  Please send your log as a Word document attached to an e-mail.

Wait for approval.  In most cases, this will only take a few hours.  Once approved, the records manager will sign your form and return it to you via e-mail.

Dispose records.
Print approved RDL, add date(s) and sign

Step 4: When you receive the approved form, you may proceed with disposition of the records as listed. 

Once records disposition is finished, print the form and write in the date(s) the records were disposed in column 8.  Sign the form to verify that disposition is complete.

If transferring records to the University Archives, include a copy of the signed RDL with the records.

Send original via campus mail

Step 5: Send the original signed form to Records Retention, Alkek Library 580, via campus mail. The records manager must retain the original signed Records Disposition Logs for ten years.


Once the original RDL is signed and mailed via campus mail,
the process is complete!