background image
  • Policies & Procedures

Student Handbook

  •  
  • Policies & Procedures

  • FERPA (Family Education Rights and Privacy Act) Notice

    The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records.  They are:

    1. The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access.

      Students should submit to the Registrar, Dean, head of the academic department, or other appropriate official, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect.  The University official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.  If the records are not maintained by the University official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.

    2. The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading.

      Students may ask the University to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading.  They should write the University official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading.

      If the University decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment.  Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.

    3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

      One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; representatives of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities ("MnSCU"), including the Board of Trustees, Chancellor, Chancellor's staff; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.

      A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the Official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility. Upon request, the University discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student is enrolled, or seeks or intends to enroll.

    4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Minnesota State University Moorhead to comply with the requirements of FERPA.  The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

      Family Policy Compliance Office
      U.S. Department of Education
      600 Independence Avenue, SW
      Washington DC  20202-4605

    5. MSU Moorhead may disclose directory information of students. Directory information includes:  name, local and permanent (hometown) address, e-mail address, telephone number, major and minor fields of study, class level, dates of enrollment, full time/part time status, awards, honors (including Dean's list), degree(s) conferred (including dates), previous educational institution(s) and dates attended, photographs taken and maintained by the University for various purposes, past and present participation in officially recognized activities and sports, height and weight of athletes.

      You may refuse to permit the disclosure of directory information if you notify MSUM's Registrar in writing that you do not want such information disclosed.  This written refusal to permit the disclosure of directory information must be made within 45 days of the date you begin taking classes at MSUM.

    Students may review or obtain a copy of MSUM's FERPA Policy at the following offices: Records, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, and Vice President of Student Affairs or by visiting this following web page.

    Discrimination/Harassment Policy & Procedure

    Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination in employment and education opportunity (1B.1 Nondiscrimination in Employment and Education Opportunity). No person shall be discriminated against in the terms and conditions of employment, personnel practices, or access to and participation in, programs, services, and activities with regard to race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, or sexual orientation. In addition, discrimination in employment based on membership or activity in a local commission as defined by law is prohibited.

    Harassment on the basis of race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, or sexual orientation is prohibited. Harassment may occur in a variety of relationships, including faculty and student, supervisor and employee, student and student, staff and student, employee and employee, and other relationships with persons having business at, or visiting the educational or working environment.

    This policy is directed at verbal or physical conduct that constitutes discrimination /harassment under state and federal law and is not directed at the content of speech. In cases in which verbal statements and other forms of expression are involved, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities will give due consideration to an individual’s constitutionally protected right to free speech and academic freedom. However, discrimination and harassment are not within the protections of academic freedom or free speech.

    The system office, colleges, and universities shall maintain and encourage full freedom, within the law, of expression, inquiry, teaching and research. Academic freedom comes with a responsibility that all members of our education community benefit from it without intimidation, exploitation or coercion.

    This policy shall apply to all individuals affiliated with Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, including but not limited to, its students, employees, applicants, volunteers, agents, and Board of Trustees, and is intended to protect the rights and privacy of both the complainant and respondent and other involved individuals, as well as to prevent retaliation or reprisal. Individuals who violate this policy shall be subject to disciplinary or other corrective action.

    For the complete policy and procedure, please reference 1B.1 Nondiscrimination in Employment and Education Opportunity at http://www.mnscu.edu/board/policy/1b-01.pdf and 1B.1.1 Report/Complaint of Discrimination/Harassment Investigation and Resolution.

    Designated Officers (to address questions or concerns, file a complaint, and attain a hard copy of the policy):

    Ashley Atteberry, Director of Student Conduct and Resolution
    Owens Hall 206
    218.477.2174
    ashley.atteberry@mnstate.edu

    Sexual Violence Policy & Procedure

    Sexual violence is an intolerable intrusion into the most personal and private rights of an individual, and is prohibited at Minnesota State University Moorhead. Minnesota State University Moorhead is committed to eliminating sexual violence in all forms and will take appropriate remedial action against any individual found responsible for acts in violation of this policy. Acts of sexual violence may also constitute violations of criminal or civil law, or other Board Policies that may require separate proceedings. To further its commitment against sexual violence, Minnesota State University Moorhead provides reporting options, internal mechanisms for dispute resolution, and prevention training or other related services as appropriate.

    For the complete policy and procedure, please reference the MSUM Sexual Violence Policy and Procedure.

    Designated Officers (to address questions or concerns, file a complaint, and attain a hard copy of the policy):

    Allegations against Employees, including Student Employees
    Greg Lemke, Director of Public Safety
    1616 9th Ave. S.
    218.477.2449
    greg.lemke@mnstate.edu  

    Allegations against Students
    Ashley Atteberry, Director of Student Conduct and Resolution
    Owens Hall 206E
    218.477.2174
    atteberry@mnstate.edu

    Alcohol & Other Drug Policy

    General Philosophy Statement

    Minnesota State University Moorhead recognizes that the misuse of alcohol and other drugs is a serious problem in our society and our community. This University seeks to create a campus environment which promotes healthy and responsible living that is conducive to the intellectual and personal development of students. The University is committed to establishing and enforcing clear campus policies regarding the use of alcohol and other drugs.

    Minnesota State University Moorhead complies with and supports the Minnesota State Colleges and University Board of Trustees policy governing alcohol and other drugs on campus, the Drug Free Schools and Community Act, the Drug Free Workplace Act, the Campus Security Act and Minnesota State law. 

    Definitions 

    1. Recognized Student Organization – any student organization that has successfully completed the recognition process as outlined in the Student Organization Handbook and registers each academic year with the Office of Student Activities.
       
    2. Travel Status – the time period from departure until return to campus by students who have obtained travel authorization through the appropriate university representative for a university sponsored student event.
       
    3. University Recognized Student Event – activities that include, but are not limited to: official meetings, practices, competitions or trips involving students (who represent divisions, departments or majors), recognized student organizations or intercollegiate athletic teams of the University.
       
    4. Good Samaritan – A student who seeks emergency services for a fellow student suffering from an alcohol or other drug (AOD) overdose.
       

    Policy Sections

    1. The use, possession, distribution, manufacture, or sale of any alcoholic beverage or illegal drug is prohibited on the campus. The illegal or unauthorized use, possession, distribution, manufacture, or sale of any controlled substance or drugs is prohibited on the campus. The possession or display of alcohol “trophies,” or other form of empty alcohol containers, is not allowed on campus. An exception for instructional purposes in accordance with Board Policy 5.18 allows for the use of alcohol in laboratory and classroom instruction or experiments.
       
    2. The use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of any alcoholic beverage, illegal drug and the illegal or unauthorized use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of a controlled substance is prohibited by individual students, recognized student organizations and athletic teams when in travel status representing the University.
       
      1. Alcohol may not be transported in vehicles that are utilized to conduct organization or university business. This includes, but is not limited to state fleet vehicles, rental or personal vehicles transporting students to a university or organization sanctioned event and/or rental or personal vehicles that will be reimbursed for mileage by organizations or the university.
         
      2. Alcohol may not be brought into, stored or consumed in the lodging facilities used by students, regardless of age, when on travel status. 
       
    3. For purposes of the National/International Student Exchange, Study Abroad and Eurospring Programs, the unlawful use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of any alcoholic beverage, illegal drug, and the illegal or unauthorized use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of a controlled substance will be determined by the law of the foreign state or country. Students are expected to comply with the laws of the foreign country. The standard applicable during travel status is to accommodate the educational aspect of exploring customs of culture of foreign countries.
       
    4. The use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of any alcoholic beverage or illegal drug and the illegal or unauthorized use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of a controlled substance by MSUM students is prohibited at all off-campus university sponsored student events.
       
    5. As members of the University community, students who live or visit off-campus are expected to behave responsibly when off-campus. University community members violating civil or criminal law may be subject to University conduct procedures for the same conduct when the conduct occurs off campus but adversely affects the educational, research, or service functions of the University. Students should be aware that a student’s unlawful use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of any alcoholic beverage, illegal drug and the illegal or unauthorized use, possession, distribution, manufacture or sale of a controlled substance cited by local law enforcement may be reported to the University. If reported, the University will take appropriate disciplinary action under this policy.
       
    6. The following advertising and promotional activities are prohibited:
       
      1. Using alcoholic beverages as awards or prizes in connection with university sponsored student events;
         
      2. Alcohol promotional activities and advertising associated with university sponsored student events; (this includes, but is not limited to, such items as: cups, t-shirts, beverage can coolers, and any other items carrying alcohol/beer advertising);
         
      3. Advertising of alcohol or illegal drugs appearing in university controlled or affiliated publications including university affiliated web sites over which it has editorial control. 
       

    The University does not regulate content or advertisements in autonomous student-edited publications, such as student newspapers, but encourages the editorship to not include advertising that promotes the high-risk use of alcohol such as happy hour drink specials, two for ones or other advertisements that encourage rapid and excessive consumption of alcohol.

    Exceptions

    For instructional purposes in authorized laboratory and classroom instruction or experiments (accordance with MNSCU Board Policy 5.18)

    For one-time use of alcoholic beverages at specific University events when authorized by the President (in accordance with MNSCU Board Policy 5.18)

    A Good Samaritan exception for violations of the alcohol/other drug policy will be recognized and honored. A student, who may be in violation of the alcohol/other drug policies but comes to the aid of another student by seeking professional help, will not be cited for an alcohol/other drug university conduct violation. This exception will not be granted to those who flagrantly or repeatedly violate the University’s Alcohol and Other Drug Policy.

    For legal and responsible* use of alcoholic beverages by students in travel status while attending events, such as banquets, when the use of alcohol has been approved by the sponsoring organization and where properly licensed Third Party Vendors provide sales of alcohol, which are staffed only by the employees of the host site or the Third Party Vendor. Students who legally consume are prohibited from operating vehicles following consumption.

    Further restrictions or allowances of legal and responsible* use of alcohol may be applied to students or student groups on travel status based on the specific program’s needs and direction of the faculty or staff supervisors/advisors.

    *Non-responsible use is defined as behavior that disrupts the University community, endangers the health or safety of self or others, results in damage to University or personal property, or requires the intervention of University or community resources. Examples of non-responsible use includes but is not limited to disorderly conduct, excessive noise, violence, threats, vandalism, or intoxication that leads to intervention by University personnel, law enforcement personnel, or medical personnel. 

    Sanctions for individuals in violation of the policies on alcohol & other drugs:

    The University reserves the right, based on the severity of the incident, to automatically refer a student to a higher level (i.e. a student’s first violation may result in Level Two or Level Three). Parental notification, in accordance with the University’s FERPA Policy § IV (A)(5), may occur. At the discretion of the hearing officer, a student may be assigned a combination of disciplinary sanctions as defined in this policy and the Student Conduct Code. Students who fail to follow the policy procedures will be subject to a registration and grade hold and may face separation from the university. The following sanctions accumulate during a students college career.

    Level One: Students will receive a written warning and will complete an online education program. Student will also complete an assessment and educational session with the Chemical Health Educator. There will be a mandatory fee of $75.00, which will appear on the MSUM billing statement.

    Level Two: Students will be placed on university disciplinary probation and will meet with the Chemical Health Educator to determine the appropriate level of intervention. Intervention could be individual or group setting. The mandatory fee is $150.00, which will appear on the MSUM billing statement.

    Level Three: A student with a severe violation or a third violation of the Alcohol and Drug Policy during his or her college career is subject to a minimum of one semester suspension from the university unless extraordinary circumstances exist. Upon re-admission following a suspension, any further alcohol or drug violation may result in expulsion from the University. The University reserves the right to waive suspension in the event that the student agrees to a referral to a licensed treatment facility for assessment and follows all recommendations. Any costs will be the responsibility of the student. The Chemical Health Educator may assist the student in facilitating the process. 

    Sanctions for organizations in violation of the policies on alcohol & other drugs: 

    Organizations found in violation of the alcohol and other drug policy may be prohibited from conducting social functions and solicitation and acceptance of new members, and university recognition may be on probation. Sanctions will be educational in nature and last for a duration of time determined by the sanctioning body or University official. The University reserves the right to suspend or revoke university recognition of the organization.

    Based on the severity of the incident or in the case of multiple violations for the alcohol and other drug policy, university recognition will be suspended for a period of no less than three years. The University reserves the right to revoke university recognition of the organization. In addition to the university’s Student Alcohol and Other Drug Policy, departments and student organizations may have established rules that are more restrictive and indicate additional sanctions for violations. Sanctions may include action such as suspension from an activity, a team, or organization.

    For further information on the Alcohol & Other Drug Policies, visit the AOD website: www.mnstate.edu/aod

    Parental Notification Policy & Procedure 

    Students experience a variety of positive and negative challenges when transitioning from their home environment to college life. Sometimes these challenges interfere with students’ academic achievement and may include alcohol and/ or drugs. MSUM’s goal is to partner with families in assisting with students’ transitions. The 2008 Minnesota Legislature amended the Education Data section of Minnesota Statute to address the issue of postsecondary institutions notifying parents of their students’ drug or alcohol offenses.

    This allows, but does not require, MSUM to disclose disciplinary violations based on drug or alcohol use or possession if the student is under the age of 21 at the time of the violation. Disclosure is only based upon a student signing a release and identifying the specific person(s) the information may be released to. Upon a student being found responsible for violating the University Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy, the Office of Student Conduct and Resolution will send out a letter to the identified parent/guardian stating the occurrence of an incident, the student’s sanctions, and information regarding future behavior.

    A student may sign this release in the Student Affairs or Office of Student Conduct and Resolution, Owens Hall 206, during regular business hours or sign and fax it to the Student Affairs office at 218.477.4324. The release is also on the Student Conduct and Resolution web page. For questions regarding this release, please call 218.477.2174.

    Students can sign the release even if there is no current record or disciplinary violations regarding drug or alcohol use or possession. The release is good for one year only from date of signature. A new release must be signed each year. 

    Drug Offense Conviction Statement

    Students convicted of possession or sale of illegal drugs for an offense that occurred when receiving Title IV aid, are ineligible for future financial aid.  Eligibility is suspended for one or more years, unless the violator completes an approved drug rehabilitation program that includes random drug testing.

    Smoking & Tobacco Use Policy

    Philosophy

    Minnesota State University Moorhead is committed to creating a clean, safe, and healthy living, learning, and working environment, for all students and employees of the University. 

    Policy

    Smoking, tobacco use, and tobacco sales (including the use or sales of smokeless tobacco products) are prohibited on University-owned, -operated, -or leased property, and in University-owned, -leased, or -operated vehicles.

    Definitions

    Smoking: The burning of any type of lighted pipe, cigar, cigarette, or any other smoking equipment, whether filled with tobacco or any other type of material.

    Smokeless Tobacco Products: Smokeless tobacco consists of the use of snuff, chewing tobacco, smokeless pouches, or other forms of loose leaf tobacco. 

    Cessation Programs and Services

    To support MSUM students and employees who wish to reduce and/or quit using tobacco products, a variety of tobacco cessation resources and services are available (see http://web.mnstate.edu/aod/tobacco.cfm). 

    Policy Enforcement

    Enforcement of this policy will depend upon the cooperation of all faculty, staff, and students not only to comply with this policy, but also to encourage others to comply with the policy, in order to promote a clean, safe, and healthy environment in which to work, study, and live. The University will provide the campus community with training opportunities designed to assist and prepare students and employees to help one another comply with the policy.

    In the case of a violation, the person will be informed of the University Smoking and Tobacco Use Policy. Should that person continue to violate the policy, the aggrieved party should contact the appropriate office: for University employees, the person's immediate supervisor; for students, the Office of Student Conduct and Resolution; and for those not associated with the University, Public Safety. 

    Policy Exceptions

    1. An exception for instructional purposes allows for the use of tobacco products in laboratory and classroom instruction/ experiments, or artistic purposes. All research, educational, and/or artistic purposes that involve the use of tobacco on campus must be approved in advance by the President and his/her designee. Such use must be preceded by reasonable advance notice to the public.
       
    2. This policy does not apply to specific activities used in connection with the practice of cultural activities by American Indians that are in accordance with the American Indian Religious Freedom Act, 42 U.S.C. sections 1996 and 1996a. All ceremonial use exceptions must be approved in advance by the President of the University or his/her designee.

    Academic Honesty

    The University expects all students to represent themselves in an honest fashion. In academic work, students are expected to present original ideas and give credit for the ideas of others. The value of a college degree depends on the integrity of the work completed by the student.

    When an instructor has convincing evidence of cheating or plagiarism, a failing grade may be assigned for the course in which the student cheated. Instructors also may choose to report the offense, the evidence, and their action to the Dean of their college or the Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs. If the instructor (or any other person) feels the seriousness of the offense warrants additional action, the incident may be reported to the Director of Student Conduct and Resolution. The Director of Student Conduct and Resolution will follow procedures set out in the Student Conduct Code. After the review of the case and a fair, unbiased hearing, the Director of Student Conduct and Resolution may take disciplinary action if the student is found responsible (see Student Conduct Code for details).

    A student who has a course grade reduced by an instructor because of cheating or plagiarism, and who disputes the instructor’s finding, may appeal the grade, but only by using the Grade Appeal Policy, which states that the student must prove the grade was arbitrary, prejudicial, or in error. 

    Class Cancellation

    In case of a severe weather the University may either cancel classes or close.

    1. Class cancellation - All classes are cancelled and students are excused. The University’s services remain open.
        
    2. University closed - All classes are cancelled (students excused). The normal University operations and programs are closed. Essential services must be maintained.

    To determine if the University has cancelled classes or closed check MSUM web page at www.mnstate.edu, or listen to local (Fargo/Moorhead) radio and TV broadcasts. Emergency information is also available from the Public Safety Office (218.477.2449). The University makes a determination to cancel or close based on a number of safety and weather considerations. Students should always check local weather and road conditions and make a personal judgment relative to their location and circumstances prior to travel.

    Grievance/Complaint Process

    This general procedure is applicable only to those administrative actions for which no special grievance procedure has been established. Special procedures have been established for certain academic (e.g. graduation, grades), student conduct, discrimination/harassment, and employment related matters. Students desiring to appeal actions or procedures of University administrative offices must meet with the following officials, continuing up the hierarchy as necessary to resolve the issues. 

    Academic Affairs

    1. Department Chair of the academic discipline in which the problem arose
    2. Dean of that college discipline
    3. Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
    4. President 

    Administrative Affairs

    1. Director of specific area
    2. Vice President for Administrative Affairs
    3. President 

    Student Affairs

    1. Director of specific area
    2. Vice President for Student Affairs
    3. President 

    Appeal of Undergraduate Academic Policies

    Academic Appeals can be filed to seek waiver of a graduation or Liberal Arts and Sciences Curriculum requirements, retroactively withdraw from a course (after the withdrawal deadline has passed), and other similar situations. Appeals to retroactively withdraw cannot be accepted if five years have passed since the course in question was taken. Students can inquire in the Records Office (Owens 104) whether an appeal is appropriate in their situation.

    Students complete the appeal form and return it to the Records Office, along with appropriate supporting documentation. The Academic Appeals Committee reviews student appeals and approves or denies them. Students whose appeals are denied by the Committee may appeal to the Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs whose decision is final. 

    Grade Appeals

    Grade Appeals are covered under a special grievance process, which is outlined below.

    1. A student has a right to expect thoughtful and clearly defined approaches to course grading, but it must be recognized that varied standards and individual approaches to grading are valid. Course grading methods should be thoroughly explained to students at the beginning of the semester and must appear on the course syllabus.
        
    2. In a course grade appeal, only arbitrariness, prejudice, and/or error will be considered as legitimate bases for an appeal.
       
      • Arbitrariness: The grade awarded represents such a substantial departure from accepted academic norms as to demonstrate that the instructor did not actually exercise professional judgment.
          
      • Prejudice: The grade awarded was motivated by ill will, and is not indicative of the student’s academic performance.
          
      • Error: The instructor made a mistake in fact, or failed to give students adequate notice of grading policies.
          
      • If a student believes that discrimination or harassment was a factor in the determination of the course grade awarded, a complaint should be filed with the Title IX Coordinator/Director of Student Conduct & Resolution under Minnesota State Colleges and Universities policy, 1B.1 Nondiscrimination in Employment and Education Opportunity.
       
    3. A student may appeal a grade reduced for academic dishonesty through the Course Grade Appeal Policy.
        
    4. The Course Grade Appeal process must be initiated by the student prior to the close of week six of the following semester. If the student moves to the formal process that must be done before the end of the semester in which the appeal was initiated. In cases where an incomplete was originally assigned, an appeal must be made within six weeks of the date the final grade is posted by the Registrar’s office and available to the student on the web. In this latter situation, if the student moves to the formal process, that must be done during the first ten weeks of the next academic year term.
        
    5. Normally, the Course Grade Appeal process will be completed during the semester in which the appeal is filed.
        
    6. The Course Grade Appeal Process 
       
      1. The informal steps:
         
        1. The student will discuss the issue with the instructor, and may consult with the department chairperson, in an attempt to resolve the matter.
            
        2. If the matter is not satisfactorily resolved, the student will discuss the issue with the dean in whose college the course was offered. If the matter cannot be resolved informally, the student may choose to file a formal appeal. 
         
      2. The formal grade appeal:
         
        1. The student will request a Course Grade Appeal form from the dean. The student will submit it along with any supporting documentation to the dean. The student should keep a copy. The dean will send a copy of the Appeal form and supporting documentation to the instructor.
            
        2. The dean will talk to the instructor and to the student to attempt resolution.
            
        3. If no resolution can be reached, the dean will appoint an ad hoc committee and will serve as a resource for the committee. The committee will consist of one faculty member from the academic department offering the course, two faculty members from other departments within the college, and two upper division students who are majors in fields represented in that college. The dean shall designate one of the faculty members as chairperson.
            
        4. The instructor of the course will submit a written response to the appeal using the form provided and such other materials as the instructor chooses to enclose. A copy of those materials will be given to the student. However, any material protected by data privacy statutes will be redacted. 
            
        5. The ad hoc appeals committee performs an investigative role and may request additional written information from the student and/or the instructor through the committee chairperson or the dean.
            
        6. Based on the information gathered, the committee will prepare written findings with regard to the issues raised in the appeal, that is, the alleged arbitrariness, prejudice, and/or error on the part of the instructor. The committee will speak to one or more of the criteria as the basis for its findings. The committee chairperson will forward written findings to the student, to the instructor, and to the dean.
            
        7. The instructor and the student may each respond in writing to the dean that the committee’s findings are acceptable or unacceptable. If either does not respond
          within seven days, the dean will assume that the committee’s written findings are acceptable to that person.
            
        8. If no resolution has been reached, the dean will review the written findings of the committee and the responses of the instructor and the student. The dean will
          then make a recommendation to the vice president for academic affairs, attaching the committee’s written findings, written materials gathered, and the parties’ responses. A copy of the dean’s recommendation to the vice president shall be provided to the student and the instructor.
            
        9. The vice president for academic affairs, or designee, will review all the materials, and will make a recommendation to the President, or designee, who shall make the final decision. Copies of the vice president’s recommendation to the President shall be provided to the student and the instructor.
            
        10. The final decision may take the form of a:
          • recommendation to the instructor and/or
          • change of grade and /or
          • determination that no action is warranted.
           
        11. If at any time during the formal Course Grade Appeal Process resolution is reached, the Course Grade Appeal Process terminates. 
         
       

    In addition to the formal resolution processes described in this section, students are encouraged to pursue informal avenues. Each College has a student advisory board, whose members are available to consult with students and provide advocacy, advice, and assistance. Student Advisory Board members are posted in the College Deans’ offices.

    Student Absence Policy

    Students are expected to attend all class meetings unless they are ill or officially excused as the result of participation in a university function. However, faculty members may or may not take roll in their classes, and they may or may not lower the marks of students for the sole reason of unexcused absences. If a faculty member has a practice of penalizing for nonattendance, he/she must (a) announce the policy regarding the penalty for nonattendance in writing during the first week of class, (b) not penalize the student for nonattendance unless the student is absent without official excuse for more class periods during the term than the number of periods the class meets each week (or more than two class periods during a summer session), (c) maintain accurate attendance records, and (d) submit in writing to the Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs the explicit class attendance policy statement. As a point of clarification, if a student has an unexcused absence for a class session during which an examination or other graded exercise is scheduled and the student has more unexcused absences than the number of times the class meets each week, this policy permits the faculty member to reduce the student’s grade for the sole reason of the unexcused absences and for failure to complete the graded assignment.

    In cases of individual absence due to jury duty or other legal obligations, the student must notify his/her faculty instructors prior to the absence. Each faculty member will determine the work to be made up and any effect on the course grade. For military absences, see the MSU Moorhead Bulletin index under military withdrawal, or refer questions to the Records Office.

    In the case of individual absence due to health or other emergency, the student must notify his/her faculty instructor as soon as feasible. Each faculty member will determine the appropriateness of the absence, all work to be made up, and any effect on the course grade.

    When an official university activity conflicts with scheduled classes, students participating in the official activity will be regarded as excused. Within the limits of feasibility, an excused absence assures a student the right to make up the missed class requirement(s). The nature, time, and place of the make-up work are at the discretion of the instructor. Official university events are those that are approved by the appropriate dean, athletic director, or vice president. At least two weeks prior to the activity, lists of participating students should be distributed to those affected faculty members by the faculty member or organization advisor who will be overseeing the university activity. In the case of conflict about the appropriateness of an absence or the feasibility of the student making up missed work, the faculty members involved should confer directly; the student should not be expected to mediate the conflict. In cases where the faculty members involved cannot agree to a solution, the dean(s) of the respective colleges can be called upon to mediate.

    Students wishing to appeal academic decisions or policies further may do so by appealing in writing to the Academic Appeals Committee (Owens 104). 

    Academic Advising & Students' Responsibilities

    All students are assigned an academic advisor who will provide guidance related to academic planning, course scheduling, career opportunities, and academic policies and procedures. Both the student and the advisor bear responsibility for the success of the advising relationship.

    Students can expect that their advisors:

    • Have knowledge of the university curriculum requirements and are able to provide accurate information;
        
    • Are informed about university policies, procedures, support services, and resources;
        
    • Are reasonably available for consultation by having posted office hours and/or appointment times;
        
    • Have knowledge of career opportunities and appropriate graduate programs in their fields; and
        
    • Will refer the student to specialized institutional and community resources when necessary.

    Advisors expect that students:

    • Will make and keep appointments;
        
    • Will prepare for advisor appointments by bringing their degree audit report (DARS) to the appointment and giving thoughtful consideration to life/career goals, fields of study, and personal interests;
        
    • Will keep the advisor informed when there are changes in objectives, course selection, academic plans, or progress;
        
    • Will maintain up-to-date personal records of academic progress and will resolve discrepancies on official grade reports and/or other university documents; and
        
    • Recognizes that they bear the ultimate responsibility for the development and implementation of their academic plan of study, including meeting graduation requirements.

    Student Email Policy

    Email is an appropriate and preferred method for official communication by MSUM with students. All official University business will be conducted via "mnstate.edu" email accounts. Email communication to students will be sent to the mnstate.edu email address exclusively. Students are expected to receive, read, and act in a timely manner, in necessary.

    Course Syllabus Policy

    Policy Statement

    The course syllabus is prepared to clearly notify students of course content, course requirements, and course expectations.

    Dissemination to Students

    Each student enrolled in a course shall be provided a course syllabus during the first week of class. For courses offered in a condensed format, the timeframe for distribution will be adjusted accordingly. 

    Syllabus Elements

    The required course syllabus elements follow; optional elements appear in italics and items underlined are required under Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board Policy 3.22, Course Syllabi. 

    1. Course Number, Title.
    2. Instructor
      Department
      Office Building/Office Number
      Office Telephone
      Email Address
      Office Hours
      Classroom Building and Room Number
      Website.
    3. Course Description. (The description should be taken from the MSU Moorhead Bulletin; include pre-requisites, credits, and lecture/laboratory breakdown.)
    4. Required Texts/Readings.
    5. Conceptual Framework. (This is required for every syllabus for education courses.)
    6. Course Objectives/Student Learning Outcomes.
    7. For Liberal Arts and Sciences Curriculum (LASC) Courses: The LASC Competencies addressed by the course. For Writing-Intensive Courses: The Student Competencies from LASC Competency Area 1B-Written Communication extended by the course.
    8. Instructional Strategies: (List the strategies that you use in this class, e.g., discussion, small group work, role play, and so on.)
    9. Course Requirements. (Include all extra-curricular events with times/dates, if possible.)
    10. Evaluation Standards/Course Grading Policy.
    11. Course Outline.
    12. Other. (Any additional information that you feel is important.)
    13. Attendance Policy. (Include if applicable; see MSUM Student Absence Policy)
    14. Academic Honesty. (See Student Policies, Student Handbook).
    15. Special Accommodations. (From the Disability Services Office): Students with disabilities who believe that they may need an accommodation in this class are encouraged to contact Greg Toutges, Coordinator of Disability Services, at 477.4318 (voice) or 1.800.627.3529 (MRS/TTY), Flora Frick 154, as soon as possible to ensure that accommodations are implemented in a timely fashion.

    Online Communication

    Students are encouraged to become actively engaged in the University community. Social networking websites, e.g. Facebook, MySpace, and Xanga provide additional means for students to connect with one another. Communication on these sites is considered a public forum and can be viewed by anyone. To support personal safety and guard against identify theft, students are cautioned against including class schedules, birthdates, cell phone numbers, and addresses on their profiles. While the University does not monitor such sites, suspected violations of law or University policy online may be submitted to campus officials and police for investigation. 

    Skateboarding, In-Line Skating, & Bicycle Policy

    It is the responsibility of Minnesota State University Moorhead to reduce hazardous conditions and the destruction of property belonging to or under the control of the university. The sidewalks and grounds of Minnesota State University Moorhead have been traditionally shared with all members of the Moorhead community. Restrictions on use have been rare and only imposed when matters of safety and security were the main concern. As the recreational use of skateboards, in-line skates and bicycles has increased greatly, so has the concern over the safety hazards and the damage they have created.

    Skateboards, in- line skates, and bicycles are prohibited from operation inside any university building and are permitted on university property for the purpose of transportation only. For the complete policy and procedure, please reference the MSUM Skateboarding, In-line Skate, and Bicycle Policy at http://web.mnstate.edu/adminaff/files/policies/skateboard.cfm