Students, both undergraduate and graduate, are of primary concern to all faculty members, and students' academic needs are of primary importance to the Department.  Students participate in various Department committees including the Undergraduate Program Committee (UPC), Graduate Programs Committee (GPC), and those ad hoc committees where students' viewpoints are useful and appropriate.  Student appointments to committees are made by the Chair in consultation with the FAC and the faculty members involved in and affected by a specific committee's work.

  1. Advising

    Faculty are required to advise and counsel undergraduate and graduate students on academic matters.  General advising at the undergraduate level is coordinated by the Undergraduate Advisor who serves as the Department representative for College and University functions related to undergraduate programs and activities.  Individual faculty members are responsible for providing academic counseling to undergraduate students assigned to them and to other undergraduate students who seek such advice, as needed.  Student advising at the graduate level is conducted by the student's "major professor" and the student’s dissertation committee members.

  2. Student Academic Misconduct

    The University’s Administrative policy regarding student cheating and plagiarism is included in the University Policy Register. (See, University Policy Register 3342-3-01.8)

  3. Student Grievance and Academic Complaints

    The University’s policies and procedures which govern student grievances and student academic complaints are included in the University Policy Register.  (See, University Policy Register 3342-4-02.102, 3342-02-3 and 3342-8-01.4)

    Student complaints and problems should always be resolved at the lowest level possible.  A student should always consult with her/his professor first. If the complaint cannot be settled, the student should consult the Chair.

    If the involved parties do not reach resolution at this point, the student, professor, or Chair may request that the grievance be heard by the Student Academic Complaint Committee (SACC), augmented by a student member appointed according to college procedure.  After hearing both the student and the professor, the SACC will make a recommendation to the Chair for resolution of the issue.  If the grievance is not satisfactorily settled at the department level, the student or faculty member may appeal to the Dean.

  4. Student Grades


    1. Within the first two weeks of each semester each student shall receive from each instructor a written or web page description of the nature of the course, with a list of class responsibilities including those things upon which the student will be graded, the grading scale, the weights attached to each part of the course, assigned papers or projects, and a statement of policy regarding class attendance.
    2. Each faculty member may be requested to justify any grade given any student.  The syllabus and formal modifying announcements to the class constitute the basis for grades.
    3. Clarification and adjudication of grades should be requested during the semester immediately following the one in which the grade is given.  In the case of spring semester grades, students may request clarification and justification through the following fall semester.
    4. Formal complaints against an instructor's grading practices should be based, insofar as possible, on claims that the instructor is not consistent with his or her own standards as outlined in the syllabus.
    5. In case of a grievance on grades, the student should first talk to her/his course instructor.  If not satisfied, the student should talk to the Department Chair.
  5. Transfer Credit Procedures

    The Chair is responsible for the evaluation of undergraduate transfer credit and may consult with a faculty member who teaches the specific course or courses at issue.  Questions of transfer credit for other subject areas should be referred to the College office.

    Graduate transfer credit is evaluated according to the process described in the current Graduate School Catalog.  Both masters and doctoral transfer credit may be accepted if the criteria are met and the student's adviser, the Graduate Programs Committee, and the Dean approve the transfer credit.

  6. Privacy of Student Records

    The Chair is responsible for ensuring that all members of the Department comply with all laws and University Policies which govern the privacy of student education records, including but not limited to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).  These regulations require, among other things, that faculty members keep thorough academic records and forbid the posting of grades by name, social security number or any other system which might identify a student with her/his education record.  For further information, contact the University’s Office of Legal Affairs.

  7. Student Evaluations

    All courses are evaluated each semester, including summer sessions, using the approved Student Survey of Instruction (SSI).  Faculty members are informed of the day and time for the evaluation and graduate students administer the SSIs under the direction of a Department staff person.  SSIs are returned in a sealed envelope to the Department office.  The Department Administrative Assistant arranges for the appropriate scoring of SSIs according to the approved group norms for the Department.  SSIs are not available to individual faculty members until after grades are submitted to the Registrar.  SSIs and the results are maintained in the Department office and are available for faculty review.  SSIs for Regional Campus faculty are administered and maintained by the campus at which the course is taught.

  8. Attendance

    The course instructor shall remind the student that he or she is accountable for the material covered in a course, regardless of his attendance record or of the validity of his reasons for absence.  Course instructors are obligated neither to give makeup examinations for unexcused absences nor to provide extra help for work missed due to unexcused absences.

  9. Course Organization and Grades

    Course instructors must provide students within the first two weeks of the course with a written or web page syllabus, the number and tentative dates of examinations, reading assignments, and such other requirements set by the instructor.  At least one exam will be scheduled and returned to students before the course withdrawal deadline.  For the meaning of grades the student should be referred to the current catalog.  Penalties for cheating and plagiarism are detailed in the University Policy Register, Section 3342- 3‑01.8.

  10. Teaching

    If a student (or group of students) wishes to register a complaint about quality of teaching the complaint should be registered with the course instructor and then the Department Chair if she/he could not reach a resolution with the instructor. The Chair will then discuss the complaint with the instructor concerned.