Towson University is a member of the University System of Maryland (USM), which comprises 12 institutions, two regional higher education centers and a system office.

A Board of Regents, consisting of 17 regents appointed by the governor, has oversight over the USM campuses and institutes.

The president and his or her designees are responsible for the day-to-day governance of the university. The University Senate and its committees develop university policies and procedures, with the senate also serving in an advisory capacity to the university president.