The purpose of the Montana University System is to deliver high quality post-secondary educational opportunities to the citizens of Montana while balancing access, cost and accountability.


The Montana University System serves the citizens of Montana and the public good through a diverse community of scholars and learners. Representing a rich academic tradition, this community prepares graduates who are inquisitive, productive, and contributing citizens not only in the State but also in the larger world community. To this end and in fulfillment of its mission, the Montana University System will


  • Exercise proper stewardship of the public trust and remain sensitive to its civic responsibility.
  • Accord priority to student learning and success, quality in instruction, research and public service programs, and efficient and effective use of taxpayers’ investment in public higher education.
  • Embrace the principle of academic freedom exercised in the context of academic responsibility toward students and the larger community.
  • Acknowledge the importance of discovery to the advancement of society and promote a learning environment that fosters critical thinking and inquiry both within and across disciplines.
  • Expect campuses to meet their civic duty and exercise leadership by serving as educational, cultural, and economic development resources within their communities, regions and the State.
  • Educationally
  • Develop an informed, educated and culturally aware citizenry that is prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st century, engage in life-long learning, and lead productive lives in an increasingly diverse and global society.
  • Serve students of all ages and from all walks of life and all Montana cultures by providing a wide range of educational experiences at the non-credit, certificate, associate, baccalaureate, master’s, specialist and doctoral levels both on the MUS campuses and through distributed learning strategies.
  • Emphasize student success, treat all students with the respect they deserve, and provide them with the services they need to be successful.
  • Foster a climate where students take responsibility for their own learning and engage in both active and collaborative learning experiences.
  • Promote programs of study that combine theory and practice, research and service, along with hands-on and creative activities.
  • Encourage all members of the university community to explore and develop international and interdisciplinary perspectives in their programs and activities and to understand the power and influence of globalization.
  • Use outcomes assessment to validate student achievement and acquisition of essential skills, e.g. excellent communication skills, facility in use of technology, ability to solve problems, capacity to work in teams.
  • Involve students in the full range of college and university activities (research, instruction, administration, public service, etc.) to enhance their learning experiences.


  • Enact policies that promote greater efficiency and effectiveness in university system programs, activities, and operations.
  • Remain steadfastly committed to the public good while relying upon a wide range of both public and private funding and support.
  • Provide academic opportunities to the citizens of Montana when and where they need them and at a price they can afford.
  • Pursue an approach that is market oriented and customer driven, while maintaining a service orientation toward both students and citizens in its management and operations.
  • Expand the use of information technology to advance student learning, increase access to educational services, and improve the management of resources.
  • Engage in collaborative relationships with business, industry, community, government and other educational entities to promote the common good and to advance learning.

Corrected as of July 7, 1999