Preferred Name Change

With the growing diversity of our campus, many students use names other than their given name for a variety of personal or cultural reasons. To better serve our students, we have created the option to add a Preferred First Name to specific University applications that are used by students.

By submitting the Preferred Name form through PAWS, I understand that:

  • The Preferred First Name replaces the Legal First Name in the following systems:
    • CAPP
    • Campus Directory
    • Class Roster
    • EAB
    • DegreeWorks
    • iCollege

Student’s legal name will remain unchanged in all other university related systems, including the student view in PAWS.

Submission Deadlines

The deadline to submit the Preferred Name request is no later than 5 p.m. on the last day of the first week of classes each semester. Refer to the Academic Calendar for specific dates.

Once submitted, the request will be processed immediately. Requests received after the deadline will be applied to the student’s record the following semester.

Students are encouraged to log into PAWS to confirm that their preferred name has been updated and to also check their GSU email accounts often for important messages from Georgia State.

Note: Preferred names will not be used in cases where the legal name is required, including but not limited to, financial aid documents, official transcripts, diplomas, payroll records, and federal immigration documents.

FAQ

A preferred name is a first name (i.e., given name) that may be chosen to be used instead of the legal first name. Students may opt to go by a preferred name that is different from their legal first name.
With the growing diversity of our campus, many students use names other than their given name for a variety of personal or cultural reasons. To better serve our students we have created the option to add a Preferred First Name to specific University applications that are used by students.
Your legal name is the name that is listed on government issued identification, your birth certificate, and/or associated with your social security or tax ID number. A preferred name is a first name used by a student that is different than their legal or given name. A student may use a preferred name for a variety of reasons. Preferred names are used internally to Georgia State University and in place of the legal first name whenever possible. The preferred name designated with Georgia State University does not change your legal or given name.
At this time, preferred names will not be displayed on PantherCards.
Yes, student requests will be reviewed by The Office of the Registrar. The University reserves the right to remove a Preferred Name if it contains inappropriate or offensive language. Preferred Names may not be used for purposes of fraud or misrepresentation. Individuals found to have abused the preferred name service may be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the appropriate University handbook.
The Preferred First Name replaces the Legal First Name in the following systems:

  • CAPP
  • Campus Directory
  • Class Roster
  • EAB
  • Degree Works
  • iCollege

No, once you have completed the Preferred Name Change Form and it has been reviewed and approved your preferred name will appear in all noted systems. We are not able to limit which systems or applications will use the Preferred Name field.
Yes, if you would like to revert to your legal name please submit your request via your PAWS account. Once the request has been reviewed and approved your legal name will replace your Preferred Name within the semester you submit the request, provided it is within the designated timeframe. If not, your preferred name will be updated at the start of the next semester.
All Preferred Name Change requests for students are managed and maintained by the Office of the Registrar. This includes request review and approval. For concerns regarding the Preferred Name Change Form and approvals, please contact the Enrollment and Registration Services Call Center at 404-413-2900.
The deadline to submit Preferred Name requests is no later than 5 p.m. on the last day of the drop add period for the semester. Please refer to the Academic Calendar for specific dates.