Guide to NameID Formats and Attributes Available from the UW IdP

Last updated: May 30, 2024
Audience: IT Staff / Technical

This document describes the NameID formats and attributes that can be released by the UW Identity Provider (IdP) to  SAML relying parties (e.g. Shibboleth SPs).


In addition to providing user authentication and single sign-on (SSO) for web applications, SAML provides the capability for an IdP to release additional user information to an SP at authentication time. The user information is presented as a nameID and assertion attributes. Attributes are useful for access control decisions and personalization within the SP application. When integrating an application with SAML, it is helpful to know which NameID formats and attributes are available, where they come from, and what they look like. This guide provides that information.


NameIDs are returned to an SP in the IdP’s authentication response. They are enclosed within the <Subject></Subject> block of XML.

SAML Format
Example Value1
default urn:oasis:names:tc:SAML:2.0:
An identifier that is generated with a new value for each authentication.
nameIDPersistentID urn:oasis:names:tc:SAML:2.0:
An identifier that is computed and stored once for each user/SP
combination. The same value will be released each time a user
authenticates from the same SP but different values will be released
if the user also authenticates from other SPs.
eppnNameID urn:oasis:names:tc:SAML:1.1:
ePPN2 as a NameID
idNameID urn:oasis:names:tc:SAML:1.1:
uwNetID3 as a NameID jsmith
uwEduEmailNameID urn:oasis:names:tc:SAML:1.1:
uwEduEmail4 as a NameID

1 All NameID formats the UW IdP releases have three parts: IDP entityID|SP entityID|value. For example, an eppnNameID might look like|| Only the last part is shown in the “Example Value” column.
2 See ePPN description in table below.
3 See uwNetID description in table below.
4 See uwEduEmail description in table below.



Attributes are returned to an SP in the IdP’s authentication response. They are enclosed within the <AttributeStatement></AttributeStatement> block of XML.

Some attributes provided by the UW IdP are defined by the eduPerson specification.

  • You request release of attributes via the UW Service Provider Registry. See instructions for requesting attributes for more information.
  • In the table below, “SP Registry Name” is how the attributes are labeled in the UW’s SP registry.  “FriendlyName” and “Name” are how the attributes are labeled in the SAML response from the IdP.
  • The attribute “FriendlyName” from the IdP can be mapped to any Service Provider attribute “ID” by configuration in the attribute-map.xml file. The Service Provider attribute “ID” is what will be populated into web server environment variables. There is rarely a good reason to change the “ID” to anything different from the default “FriendlyName”.
  • Multi-valued string attributes normally show up in the environment as a string of semi-colon separated values.
  • Several attributes are sourced from the Person Directory Service (PDS). See the PDS Attribute Reference for more information.

Table 1. The information in this table is specific to personal UW NetIDs. For shared UW NetIDs, the IdP can only release UW NetID-based, uwRegID, and displayName attributes. A bolded SP Registry Name value highlights cases where the attribute name used in the SP Registry interface differs from the “FriendlyName” released by the IdP.

SP Registry Name FriendlyName Name Type Source Example Value
affiliation eduPersonAffiliation urn:oid: multi-value string PDS: eduPersonAffiliation member;staff;employee
attributePersistentID1 eduPersonTargetedID urn:oid: string computed See nameIDPersistentID in table above.
awsname RoleSessionName string computed as ePPN
awsrole Role string computed from group memberships in the u_weblogin_aws stem arn:aws:iam::227741503957:role/sandbox-myteam
awssession SessionDuration string IdP 43200
cn cn urn:oid: string PDS: “uwPersonPreferredFirst uwPersonPreferredMiddle uwPersonPreferredSurname” will be used if available, otherwise PDS: cn. John P. Smith
displayName displayName urn:oid:2.16.840.1.113730.3.1.241 string PDS: displayName John P. Smith
displayNameAndPronouns displayNameAndPronouns urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.52 string PDS: displayName (PDS: uwPersonPronoun) John P. Smith (he/him/his)
email mail urn:oid:0.9.2342.19200300.100.1.3 string Returns first match from:
PDS: uwEWPEmail1 (employee)
PDS: uwSWPEmail (student)
Computed: contain alternate emails for employees self-managed inside Workday and
employeeNumber employeeNumber urn:oid:2.16.840.1.113730.3.1.3 string PDS: uwEmployeeID 880000000
entitlement_lib2 eduPersonEntitlement urn:oid: multi-value string computed urn:mace:dir:entitlement:common-lib-terms
entitlement_sln eduPersonEntitlement urn:oid: multi-value string computed
ePPN eduPersonPrincipalName urn:oid: string computed
ePTID3 eduPersonTargetedID urn:oid: string computed
givenName givenName urn:oid: string PDS: “uwPersonPreferredFirst uwPersonPreferredMiddle” will be used if set by user, otherwise PDS: uwPersonRegisteredFirstMiddle John P.
gws_groups4 isMemberOf urn:oid: multi-value string GWS

homedept5 homeDepartment urn:oid: string PDS: uwEmployeeHomeDepartment OFFICE OF PROGRESS
mailstop mailstop urn:oid: string PDS: uwEmployeeMailstop 359000
phone6 phone urn:oid: string PDS: uwEWPPhone1 +1 206 221-5000
preferredFirst preferredFirst urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.47 string PDS: uwPersonPreferredFirst John
preferredMiddle preferredMiddle urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.48 string PDS: uwPersonPreferredMiddle P.
preferredSurname preferredSurname urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.49 string PDS: uwPersonPreferredSurname Smith
registeredGivenName registeredGivenName urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.32 string PDS: uwPersonRegisteredFirstMiddle
(does not incorporate preferred name)
registeredSurname registeredSurname urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.31 string PDS: uwPersonRegisteredSurname
(does not incorporate preferred name)
scopedAffiliation eduPersonScopedAffiliation urn:oid: multi-value string PDS: eduPersonAffiliation
surname surname urn:oid: string PDS: uwPersonPreferredSurname will be used if set by user, otherwise uwPersonRegisteredSurname Smith
title title urn:oid: string PDS: uwEWPTitle1 Technical Lead
uwEduEmail uwEduEmail urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.45 string Computed:
uwNetID uid urn:oid:0.9.2342.19200300.100.1.1 string PDS: uwNetID smith
uwPronouns uwPronouns urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.51 string PDS: uwPersonPronoun he/him/his
uwRegID uwRegID urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.24 string PDS: uwRegID B778D7CE539311D6B3850004AC494FFE
uwStudentID uwStudentID urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.21 string PDS: uwStudentID 1234567
uwStudentSystemKey uwStudentSystemKey urn:oid:1.2.840.113994.200.20 string PDS: uwStudentSystemKey 000524591

1 attributePersistentID is the most common way to use the persistent id attribute. It replaces the SAML1 ePTID.  TargetedID and PersistentID vales are equivalent. PersistentID is constructed using the IdP entityID, the SP entityID,  and an opaque ID for the user.
2 The entitlement_lib always generates a value of “urn:mace:dir:entitlement:common-lib-terms
3 ePTID is a SAML 1 construct that has been replaced with PersistentID in SAML 2. You probably want nameIDPersistentID or attributePersistentID instead.
4 The IdP doesn’t normally release all groups to an SP. You will need to specify the particular group(s) or stem(s) that are of interest to your application.
5 Departmental affiliation based on an employee’s supervisory org in Workday.
6 Does not include student whitepages phone number data at this time.

Default Behavior

By default, the UW IdP will release a few attributes to any UW SP, where “UW SP” is defined as any SP registered in UW DNS with a domain name ending in or These attributes are:

  • uwNetID
  • ePPN
  • affiliation
  • scopedAffiliation

By default, the UW IdP will release the following attributes to any SP that is registered in the InCommon Federation or in eduGain, and that is designated with the Research & Scholarship (R&S) Category:

  • ePPN
  • ePTID
  • givenName
  • surname
  • mail

No attributes will be released by default to other SPs. Additional attributes may be requested by any UW or non-UW SP administrator.

UW IdP signs the overall SAML response, not each SAML assertion. If your SP expects the SAML assertion(s) to be signed and/or encrypted, we can configure this as a special case.

By default:

  • Responses ARE signed
  • Assertions ARE NOT signed
  • Assertions ARE NOT encrypted

By request:

  • Responses can be unsigned
  • Assertions can be signed
  • Assertions can be encrypted