Various Georgia Tech courses, such as Capstone and Senior Design, provide students with valuable real-world experience through their work on projects in collaboration with external companies. These projects sometimes necessitate Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) to protect sensitive data or intellectual property shared by the companies.

It's important to emphasize these projects are strictly academic, focused on the evaluation of student work for educational purposes. They do not involve research collaborations or services rendered by Georgia Tech or its students. Legal Affairs plays an important role in facilitating student academic  NDAs, ensuring these agreements align with the course objectives and legal requirements. 

Legal Affairs has developed a standard agreement that protects the company’s confidential information while also meeting the requirements of Georgia Tech as a state agency. 

Student Academic NDA Process

Here are a few essential steps to help navigate the Student Academic NDA process:

  1. Talk with the Company
  • Determine if the project involves proprietary information and if an NDA is required.
  • If an NDA is needed, please follow the instructions below to submit the NDA routing form to Legal Affairs.
  • Note: Use of the standard GT Student Academic NDA often expedites the NDA process.
  1. Submit the Student Academic NDA Routing Form
  1. Preparation and Negotiation of the NDA
  • After receiving a completed routing form, Legal Affairs drafts the NDA and negotiates it as needed to facilitate its execution with the company.
  1. Execution of the NDA
  • Legal Affairs oversees the signing process. 
  • Note: Only authorized signatories can sign contracts on behalf of Georgia Tech. For more information on signature authority and authorized signatories, please visit: Signature Authority Legal Topic. 
  • Once the NDA has been signed by the company and Georgia Tech, Georgia Tech students and employees participating in the project will need to sign related documentation, confirming their agreement with the NDA.

Alternatives for Student Academic NDAs

If an agreement cannot be reached between Georgia Tech and a company regarding a Student Academic NDA, students have two options:

  1. Select an Alternative Company – Students may choose a different company for their design project, one that doesn’t require an NDA or that agrees with Georgia Tech’s NDA terms.
  2. Individual NDA with the Company – Students can individually enter into an NDA with the company. In such instances, the following is recommended:
    1. Carefully read the NDA: Each student should carefully read the terms and conditions of the individual NDA to ensure they fully understand and can comply with them.
    2. Obtain permissions for project discussion: The company must allow students (e.g., via written permission or NDA revisions) to discuss confidential information with Georgia Tech faculty, staff and team members for project evaluation and completion.
    3. Understand the risks: Students should understand the potential risks of entering individual NDAs and determine if they’re willing to accept them. The primary concerns are: 
      1. Personal liability: Potential personal liability could occur if the NDA terms are breached.
      2. Sharing restrictions: Individual NDAs restrict discussing or sharing the company's confidential information with Georgia Tech faculty, staff, or team members, as these agreements are exclusive to the student and the company.
    4. Note: Georgia Tech faculty must be allowed to review final projects for grading. Also, Georgia Tech does not facilitate these individual NDAs between students and companies.  Georgia Tech students needing legal representation for individual NDAs can schedule an appointment with an external attorney through the GT Student Government Association (SGA) Legal Advising Scheduler at