Joining InCommon is the first step toward accessing several services:
Once the joining process is complete, InCommon participants can choose the services they wish to use.
1. Are You Eligible?
Participation in InCommon is open to:
- Higher Education
Two- and four-year, degree-granting academic institutions that are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education Regional Institutional Accrediting Agency, or some national or state accrediting agencies. If you represent an institution of higher education, continue to Step #2 below.
- If you are a California Community College, please go to this page for special instructions and agreement.
- Research Organizations
A Research Organization is defined as a lab, facility, or center related to a particular federal research agency and listed on an official publicly available government listing. See the joining process specific to Research Organizations. Research Organizations are eligible to sponsor partners into the federation.
- Sponsored Partners
Business, education, and research organizations who partner with higher education may join the Federation as Sponsored
Partners. Sponsored Partners must be sponsored by the designated Executive of a current InCommon Higher Education Institution or Research Organization. If you are a business or other potential sponsored partner - or if you are a higher education institution looking to sponsor an entity, please review the process for sponsorship.
- International Organizations of higher education and any international organizations legally established outside the U.S. are welcome to join InCommon.
Our detailed eligibility criteria are found in Section 4 of the Federation Operational Policies and Practices. We'd be happy to determine your eligibility status with you. Either email email@example.com or complete the Web Application Form (this is optional).
2. Sign the Agreement
- InCommon uses Docusign to electronically sign agreements and streamline the joining process. Use this link to sign the InCommon Participation Agreement. There is a downloadable hard copy of the agreement for review purposes, but not for signing.
If you have any questions about the agreement or this process, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
- There is an agreement with a special addendum for the California Community Colleges.
3. InCommon Countersigns the Agreement and Sends a Registration Link
We will electronically countersign your participation agreement and will send a link you can use to register your organization with InCommon.
4. Payment of Fees
See the fee schedule - there is a one-time registration fee and an annual fee.
- The one-time registration fee covers the costs of vetting your organization, and identity proofing your Executive and Site Administrators.
- The annual fee supports the ongoing operations of the federation. Annual fees are prorated on a daily basis in the first year, based on the day and month in which a participant joins.
5. Register Your Executive and Administrator for Identity Verification
Use the registration link that you received to:
- Submit the names of individuals to fill InCommon-related roles:
- Site Administrators (we will identity-proof for security)
- Executive: You will have already appointed your Executive in the Agreement. If you need to change your executive, you can use this template (note: it must be on institutional letterhead).
6. Identity Proofing via Telephone
Our Registration Authority will identity-proof your Executive and Site Administrators via telephone appointment.
7. Manage Your System via the Site Administration Interface
Following the identity proofing, your InCommon Administrator can gain access to the Federation Manager interface for registering and managing your systems for interoperability within the federation.
- Post your Participant
Operational Practices (POP) [HTML version] [Word version] on your organization's website.
(After the registration process is complete, one of your Site Administrators will submit your POP URL to InCommon.)
- Review InCommon policies and practices.
The InCommon Federation wiki contains a significant amount of technical and implementation information.