Abstract The level structure of 189Os has been studied by (d, p), (d, t) and (d, d') reaction spectroscopy at E d = 12.1 MeV. Assignments of a number of levels at excitation energies below ≈ 1700 keV are given. The assignments are discussed in terms of a unified model based on the Nilsson model including pairing, rotational motion and attenuated Coriolis coupling. Deviations between predicted and experimental excitation energies and wave functions are generally found to be consistent with trends observed in 187Os and in the odd W isotopes. Evidence for the existence of collective non-rotational states is found from the (d, d') reactions. Results of ( 3He, α) and high resolution γ-ray and conversion electron studies were also included at various stages of the investigation to supplement the data from the deuteron induced reactions. Comparisons between calculated and measured B(E2) values are found to indicate an intrinsic quadrupole moment of the ground-state band of ≈ 5.0 b, in agreement with values in adjacent even Os isotopes. Details of the Coriolis coupling calculations are given.