Preferred and Lived Name Usage Policy

The purpose of this policy is to outline the University of California Davis School of Medicine’s (the School) policy and process for students’ use of preferred or lived name where available and applicable. The School supports the choice of using a lived or preferred name. Reasons a person might use a lived or preferred name include to reflect an individual’s gender identity, the use of a nickname, the use of a name that reflects a cultural, religious, or familial preference or practice, or to distinguish oneself from someone with a similar name, among others. 

All medical students, faculty, and staff

Not applicable                         



  • Legal Name: A name appearing on an official government-issued/affiliated document or system.
  • Lived name: A self-chosen or personal and/or preferred professional name used instead of a legal name.
  • Preferred name: Preferred name, like lived name, is a self-chosen personal and/or professional name used instead of a legal name.  

An individual’s lived or preferred name will be the default and published on University of California documents or displayed in information systems that do not require a person’s legal name as outlined below as examples in Procedure A.

A medical student may initiate the usage of a preferred or lived name in public (e.g., organization websites) or semi-public systems where names are visible to other students, instructors, faculty, and campus officials (e.g., student dashboards, class rosters, etc.). UC Davis allows changes to the first name of a student within the university’s information systems to include a preferred name in addition to the student’s legal name. It is further understood that the student's preferred name should be used in university communications and reporting, except where the use of the legal name is necessitated by university business or a legal requirement. A preferred or lived name will appear instead of, or in addition to, a legal name in some university records and documents. Records such as paychecks and financial aid documents, that require the use of a legal name, will not display a preferred name. Whenever possible, the preferred or lived name will be used.


To establish preferred or lived name usage, some systems require student initiation and other systems require a staff member to manually update the change. These processes and point-of-contact entities are subject to change.

  1. Systems that currently only allow the use of legal names:
    • Electronic Medica Record (EMR)
    • Insurance portal
    • Financial Aid systems and documents
    • Payroll records
    • National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME)
  2. The following systems provide specific ways to establish preferred or lived name usage. These require the student to initiate the process.
  3. To establish preferred or lived name usage for the systems that follow, please send an email to the School of Medicine’s Registrar’s office (
    • AAMC
    • Banner official/unofficial transcripts and diplomas (Preferred/Lived names on diploma and transcripts started in 2023)
    • Elentra
    • ExamSoft
    • IClicker
    • myRecordTracker
    • MedHub
    • Poll Everywhere
    • Student Badge 
    • Student Records
    • Student Rosters – Internal and External (External sites require a government-issued ID with legal name, but staff will provide a roster with preferred names)

Office of Medical Education

UC Davis Policy 320-25, Gender Identity and Lived Name
Name and Gender Changes at UC Davis
UC Davis Office of the Registrar, Update Personal Information
University of California UCOP Gender Recognition and Lived Name Policy
Harassment and Discrimination Prevention Program Policies and Procedures
Harassment and Discrimination Prevention Program Non-Discrimination Statement
UC Davis Principles of Community

Office of Medical Education

Faculty Executive Committee
Office for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
Office of Medical Education*
Office of Student and Resident Diversity

September 2023 (enacted); annual review cycle

* Indicates the Policy Owner