USF’s policies are subject to change and apply to all students regardless of their choice of catalog.
In this section...
These policies apply to both undergraduate and graduate students.
Academic Grievance Procedures for Students
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
The purpose of this Policy is to provide all undergraduate and graduate students taking courses within the University of South Florida System (USF System) an opportunity for objective review of facts and events pertinent to the cause of the academic grievance.
II. STATEMENT OF POLICY
Review of the facts and events pertinent to the cause of the academic grievance will be accomplished in a collegial, non-judicial atmosphere rather than an adversarial one, and shall allow the parties involved to participate. All parties will be expected to act in a professional and civil manner. These guidelines are meant to govern all colleges (exclusive of the MD and DPT programs within the College of Medicine and the College of Pharmacy to the extent they maintain procedures and processes for issues regarding professionalism). However, USF System institutions may have unique titles and specific administrative levels. Accordingly, each institution shall determine the appropriate levels and titles for review at the time a student initiates an appeal ensuring that if it is determined the matter is an academic grievance there is at least one committee level review and recommendation to an administrator to accept or reject. In the case of Academic Integrity violations, the appeal or grievance of a decision or academic action regarding Academic Integrity is contained in USF3.027 Academic Integrity of Students.
III. DEFINITION OF TERMS
An “academic grievance” is a claim by an enrolled student receiving academic credit for a course that a specific academic decision or action (such as the assignment of a final grade or academic dismissal of a student or other grade assignment) has violated published policies and procedures, or has been applied to the grievant in a manner different from that used for other students.
- Academic grievances will not deal with general student complaints.
- An academic grievance must include a reference to a violation of a specific USF Policy, or an academic decision that was applied differently to the grievant than other students to be considered under this Policy.
- Only the final grades assigned in a course, final actions or dismissals by the academic unit are grievable.
- Disagreement or issues with individual test grades, responses to exam questions or general disagreement with the academic discretion or professional judgment of instructors, (defined below as including all levels of academic administrators for purposes of this Policy) will not be considered grounds for an academic grievance, except where they impact the final grade. If a student has a concern on an individual assignment, and would like some formal consideration, the student should contact the instructor to discuss the issue and may submit the concern as a
general complaint in writing to the instructor. If the student and instructor cannot resolve the complaint, the student may forward the complaint to the instructor’s supervisor and that supervisor shall review the complaint and provide a response to both the student and instructor. If the supervisor identifies a need for a review by another office or process, the supervisor may make an additional referral.
- Dismissals based on University protocols such as failure to maintain GPA, probation for academic performance or other automatic administrative actions are
“Instructor” shall mean any classroom instructor, thesis/dissertation/directed study supervisor, or the Dean or supervisor that imposes the final academic decision.
“Department Chair/Director” shall mean the academic head of a college department or the director of a program—or in all cases a “Department’s designee” appointed to handle
“Dean” shall mean a College Dean, or the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, or the Dean of the Office of Graduate School, or the equivalent as indicated—or in all cases a “Dean’s designee” appointed to handle academic grievances for the unit.
“Time” shall mean “academic time,” that is, periods when USF System classes are in session. The person vested with authority at the appropriate level may extend any of the time periods contained herein for good cause. Any extensions must be communicated in writing to all parties. For the purposes of this Policy, each step shall be afforded three (3) weeks as a standard time limit.
When a department considers a grievance according to published departmental procedures approved by the College Dean and Provost or College Dean and Regional Vice Chancellor
for Academic Affairs, as pertinent, the time line specified in this academic unit’s procedures will govern the process and no additional notice of time extension is needed.
“Written communication” shall mean communication by email to the recipient’s USF official email address of record or e-mail communication using assigned USF e-mail addresses.
The “burden of proof” shall be upon the student such that the student challenging the decision, action or final grade assigned has the burden of supplying evidence that proves that the instructor’s decision was incorrect, in all cases except alleged violations of academic integrity. See USF3.027 Academic Integrity of Students. In cases where the academic decision is based on a deficiency in or a violation of a clinical or professional standard, the deficiency or violation may be considered sufficient proof to support an academic failure or dismissal notwithstanding a student’s success in other areas of academic performance.
“Jurisdiction” Where the course (not the student’s registration status) is housed (e.g., payment of faculty salary for the course) determines the appropriate forum (institution, college or department) where the grievance will be conducted. The outcomes of the grievance should be shared with the home institution, College and Department (Program Director or Chair of the students major). In the case where there is a joint program or it is unclear where jurisdiction shall fall, the Provost (or designee) may be consulted to identify the appropriate forum for the grievance. If a student is dismissed from a course, program, college or institution, that forum may make an additional recommendation for a more comprehensive sanction across the System directly to the Provost. In the event there is a System level dismissal by the Provost, and a student wishes to appeal that system level action, the President may designate an administrative officer to review that appeal and make a final determination.
“Institution” There are three member institutions in the USF System specifically referred to as USF, USF St. Petersburg (USFSP) and USF Sarasota-Manatee (USFSM).
“Legal Representation” Neither party shall be entitled to bring “legal representation” to any actual grievance proceeding as this is an internal review of an academic decision.
IV. PROCESS STEPS:
A. Resolution Process at the Course or Department Level
1. If the grievance concerns the Chairperson/Director or other officials of the department, the student has a right to bypass the departmental process and proceed directly to the College Level.
2. The student shall first make a reasonable effort to resolve his or her grievance with the instructor concerned, with the date of the incident triggering the start of the process (i.e. the issuance of a final grade) and if the instructor determines it is feasible and may be productive, the instructor shall accommodate a reasonable request to discuss and attempt to resolve this issue.
3. If the situation cannot be resolved or a meeting with the instructor is not feasible, the student must file a notification letter within three (3) weeks of the triggering incident to both the department Chairperson/Director and Dean. This shall be a concise written statement of particulars and must include specific reference to the (a) published USF Policy, procedure or official published catalog and the manner in which it was allegedly violated and the decision that affected the student’s academic record or status based on a violation of that specific written USF Policy, procedure or official published catalog (b) a description of the manner in which the student was treated in a substantially inequitable manner and a statement indicating the remedy sought (c) supporting documentations of all claims in the grievance and (d) the effort the student made to resolve the issue with the instructor.
4. The department Chairperson/Director must determine if the matter is an Academic Grievance (a specific Policy violated or a student treated differently than others) or if the matter is a complaint regarding the course or instructor.
5. (a) If the Chairperson/Director determines that the matter is not an Academic Grievance, the Chairperson/Director will discuss the complaint with the student and/or the faculty member and must advise the Dean of the complaint and the recommended resolution if any. The Dean will then review the classification of the complaint as not subject to the Academic Grievance Process and advise the student and faculty member in writing of the Dean’s decision which may be to do one or more of the following:
1.) Implement the recommendation of the Chairperson/Director (which can include dismissal).
2.) Reject the classification and move the matter forward as an academic grievance.
3.) Make referrals to appropriate Human Resources or employee supervisor/office for intervention and/or to appropriate USF offices (such as Diversity and Equal Opportunity Office (DEO)).
(b) If the Chairperson/Director determines the matter is an Academic Grievance, the Chairperson shall provide a copy of the student’s statement to the instructor. The instructor may file a written response to the grievance and the Process will continue.
6. The department Chairperson/Director shall discuss the student’s statement as reference above jointly or individually with the student and the instructor to see if the grievance can be resolved. If the department maintains its own grievance procedure,* it should be applied at this point. If the grievance can be resolved, the Chairperson/Director shall provide a statement to that effect to the student and the instructor with a copy to the College Dean.
7. If the grievance cannot be resolved, the department Chair/Director shall notify both the student and the instructor, informing the student of his/her right to file a written request directed back to the Chair/Director within three weeks to move the grievance to a Formal Grievance Appeal. Upon receipt of the student’s request for a Formal Grievance Appeal to the College Level and the instructor’s response to the grievance (if provided), the Chairperson/Director shall immediately notify the College Dean of the Formal Grievance Appeal, providing copies of the student’s initiating grievance statement, any instructor’s written response to the grievance, and the written request from the student to have the process advanced to a Formal Grievance Appeal (which shall include additional student responses and final statement). Should the student not file a written request to move the grievance to a Formal Grievance Appeal within the prescribed time, the grievance will end.
B. Formal Grievance Appeal at the College Level
1. Upon receipt of the grievance, the College Dean will review that matter to confirm that it is an Academic Grievance. If the Dean determines the matter is not an Academic Grievance, the Dean may dismiss it (which is a final University Decision) and notify all parties in writing, or if the Dean determines that it is an Academic Grievance, within three weeks the Dean shall establish an Academic Grievance Committee. Each Dean shall appoint a College Dean or Administrator to maintain the Formal Grievance Appeals to the College Level with a recording of the final disposition. The membership of the Committee shall be constituted as follows:
a. Three (3) faculty members and two (2) students (undergraduate or graduate as appropriate to the case) shall be selected from the college by the Dean.
b. Wherever practical, the Committee shall not include members of the faculty or students of the department directly involved with the grievance, or faculty or students of the student’s major department. However, for cases involving Clinical or Professional Standard violations, the Committee shall include, when feasible, at least one member assigned to oversee or with expertise in, a clinical area.
c. The student or instructor may request to attend a Committee meeting to present a final statement to the committee. The Chairperson will designate which meeting the student or instructor may attend to present any final statement to the Committee. Only the Committee may invite additional parties such as faculty or students from the department involved with the grievance or from the student’s major department or other outside party to provide expert or other relevant testimony in the proceedings. The student or instructor may be present during the other’s final statement and may hear the additional information provided, however, neither may be present during the Committee’s deliberations. The meeting time and place is to be set by the Committee. Failure or an inability of the student or instructor to attend a meeting will not force the meeting to be rescheduled or cancelled.
d. The student or instructor may be accompanied by one individual (not to act as legal counsel or to participate in the meetings) if the student or instructor attends the meeting. The individual may be required to sign a confidentiality agreement.
e. Students may not initiate contact regarding or relating to the grievance process or outcome with any member of the Committee outside of this established process before, during or after the Committee review process and any such contact may be considered a violation of USF6.0021 Student Code of Conduct.
2. The Committee will operate in the following manner:
a. The Committee Chairperson will be appointed by the College Dean from among the three (3) faculty members appointed to the Committee. The Committee Chairperson shall be responsible for scheduling meetings, overseeing the deliberations of the committee and ensuring that full and fair consideration is provided to all parties. The Committee Chairperson shall vote on committee decisions only when required to break a tie.
b. All deliberations shall be in private and held confidential by all members of the Committee. The recommendation of the Committee shall be based on their interpretation of the evidence presented to it.
c. Within three (3) weeks of the Committee appointment, the Committee Chairperson shall deliver in writing to the College Dean a report of the findings and a recommended resolution.
d. Within three (3) weeks of receipt of the Committee recommendation, the College Dean shall provide a decision in writing to all parties (the student, the instructor and the department Chair/Program Director). The Dean’s decision shall indicate whether the decision was consistent with the committee recommendation.
e. The College Dean’s decision is a final decision and appealable by the instructor or student to the University level only in the event (1) the decision of the College Dean is contrary to the recommendation of the Committee (which will be indicated in the Dean’s decision) or (2) if there is a specific and identified substantive procedural violation of these Student Academic Grievance Procedures. Such an appeal must be made in writing to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies or Graduate Studies (as appropriate) or the appropriate Chief Academic Officer or their designee within three weeks of receipt of the decision from the College Dean.
C. Formal Grievance Appeal at the Institution Level
For this level of appeal process, the Provost/Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs or the Sr. Vice President for USF Health has delegated authority for academic grievance appeals at the Institution level to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies for appeals involving undergraduate courses and to the Dean of the Office of Graduate Studies for appeals involving graduate courses. For academic grievance appeals for grades assigned in courses at USFSP or USFSM, the appropriate Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at those Institutions may delegate authority to an Academic Administrator Officer to hear the appeal at the System Level (for the purposes of this section Administrative Officer, Graduate/Undergraduate Dean are referred to as “Administrator Officer”). In the event there is confusion as to the home for the course or in the registration status of the student within the USF System, the Provost may designate the jurisdiction for the appeal. The process steps are outlined below.
1. The student or the instructor may appeal at the Institution Level within three (3) weeks of the receipt of a decision made at the College Level, when (1) the decision at the College Dean Level is contrary to the recommendation of the Grievance Committee (2) a party identifies a specific substantive procedural violation in the application of the AGP. Within three weeks of receipt of the appeal of the decision, the Administrative Officer shall determine that the appeal is merited (there is a recommendation at the College Level contrary to the committee or the Administrative Officer concurs that there is cause to believe a substantive procedural violation in application of the AGP process may have occurred). If the Administrative Officer determines the appeal is not merited, the Administrative Officer shall advise the student, the instructor and the department Chair accordingly and that notice shall be a final University Decision. If the appeal is determined to be merited, the Administrative Officer (who may consult with the Faculty Senate and Student Senate) shall appoint an Appeals Committee consisting of three (3) faculty members drawn from the appropriate USF System Undergraduate Council or Graduate Council, and two (2) students, undergraduate or graduate (as appropriate and to be determined by the Administrative Officer).
2. The structure, functions and operating procedures of the Appeals Committee will be the same as those of the College Committee (i.e. chaired by one of the appointed faculty members appointed by the Administrative Officer who will not vote except in the case of a tie, having no representation from either party’s respective departments, developing a recommendation to the Administrative Officer, etc.).
3. Within three (3) weeks of the appointment, the Committee Chairperson shall deliver in writing to the Administrative Officer a report of the findings of the Committee and a recommended resolution.
4. Within three (3) weeks of receipt of the Committee recommendation, the Administrative Officer shall provide a decision in writing to all parties.
5. If the Administrative Officer’s decision is that a grade change is merited, the Administrative Officer shall initiate the grade change on the authority of the Provost and so inform all parties. In all academic grievance appeals, the Administrative Officer’s decision is a final University decision and not subject to further appeal within the USF System.
In those cases where the final University decision constitutes a dismissal or permanent separation from the University, a student may seek judicial review pursuant to Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.190(b)(3) by filing a petition for certiorari review with the appropriate circuit court within thirty (30) days of the final University decision. If a person seeks review with the court, a copy of the petition must also be provided to the University of South Florida Office of the General Counsel at University of South Florida, CGS 301, 4202 E. Fowler Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33620-4301.
The final outcome will vary on an individual case basis. In the case of grade appeals, the USF System reserves the right to change a student’s grade if it is determined at the conclusion of the grievance process that the grade given was incorrect. The term “incorrect” means the assigned grade was based on something other than performance in the course, or that the assignment of the grade was not consistent with the criteria for awarding of grades as described in the course syllabus or other materials distributed to the student. In such circumstances, the Dean or Provost/Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Regional Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs, or the Sr. Vice President, USF Health may file an administrative grade change. In the case of all other academic grievances, the USF System reserves the right to determine the final outcome based on the procedures detailed herein.
Record Keeping: In the event a grievance moves to a Formal College Grievance Appeal, each College is responsible for maintaining a list of informal grievances and their final outcomes.
Academic Integrity of Students
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
Academic integrity is the foundation of the University of South Florida System’s (USF System) commitment to the academic honesty and personal integrity of its university community. Academic integrity is grounded in certain fundamental values, which include honesty, respect and fairness. Broadly defined, academic honesty is the completion of all academic endeavors and claims of scholarly knowledge as representative of one’s own efforts. Knowledge and maintenance of the academic standards of honesty and integrity as set forth by the university are the responsibility of the entire academic community, including the instructional faculty, staff and students. The final decision on an academic integrity violation and related academic sanction at any USF System member institution shall affect and be applied to the academic status of the student throughout the USF System, unless otherwise determined by the independently accredited institution.
II. STATEMENT OF REGULATION
This Regulation asserts fairness in that it requires notice to any student accused of a violation of academic integrity and provides a directive for discussion between the instructor and student to seek a fair and equitable resolution. If a fair resolution is not accomplished in this discussion, this Regulation allows the student continued rights of due process.
As this Regulation contemplates several levels of administrative or academic review, students are advised to direct emails only to the single designated office identified as responsible for the current level of review. Student’s failure to adhere to this directive or ignoring specific directives provided by an administrator such as the emailing all levels of administration, multiple parties not directly involved, or tangentially involved offices may be interpreted as a waiver of the review/appeal process and a failure to follow university directives.
As the university has both Offices of Undergraduate and Graduate Studies with different standards for academic integrity, it is important to reference Section V(D).
III. APPLICABILITY & AUTHORITY
A. The following Regulation applies to all students, instructional faculty and staff who participate in administration of academic classes, programs and research at the USF System. The processes outlined in this Regulation are meant to govern all colleges exclusive of the MD and DPT programs within the College of Medicine and the College of Pharmacy to the extent that they maintain procedures and processes for issues regarding academic integrity and/or professionalism.
B. The Academic Integrity Review Process (AIRP) is independent of any other USF process or review. The determinations by the Academic Offices are final. However, this process includes mechanisms for referrals outside of the Academic process to both the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR) and the Division of Research, Integrity and Compliance (DRIC). Each of the offices has the authority to impose independent sanctions on the student that may be additional, less severe or more severe than the academic sanctions. The student will be subject to each sanction concurrently and/or consecutively and must comply with the full terms of each.
C. The student will be assigned the grade by the instructor in the course in which the student is registered. Jurisdiction of the appeal and review stays with the course; however, if the potential sanction extends outside of the College or Academic unit where the course is housed, jurisdiction is transferred to the Academic Officer with the authority to impose the greater sanction.
IV. DEFINITION OF TERMS
A. Notice shall be considered final upon email to a student’s official USF email address. Additional notice may be sent at the discretion of the parties.
B. Academic Officer (“AO”) shall mean the individual (or their designee) vested with the authority to impose the recommended academic sanctions by the instructor. The appropriate AO may vary by institution, circumstance or factual basis of each case. In the event it is unclear, the Chief Academic Officer or their designee will identify the appropriate AO. The table below is provided as a general guideline.
|Sanction:||Academic Officer (to be determined by individual cases and title may vary):||Academic Officer for Academic Integrity Appeal:|
|Course||· Grade Assignment; or· Removal from course||Instructor’s Supervisor or Department Chair||Dean of College|
|Program||· Suspension; or· Removal from Program||Chair (or Director for certain Schools)||Dean of College|
|College||· Suspension; or· Removal from College||Dean of College||Dean of Graduate/Undergraduate Studies or Chief Academic Officer|
|University or Institution||· Suspension; or· Dismissal from University||Dean of Graduate/Undergraduate Studies or Chief Academic Officer||Dean of Graduate/Undergraduate Studies or Chief Academic Officer|
C. Dean shall mean a College Dean, or where applicable the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, Dean of Graduate Studies, or the Chief Academic Officer (for those Institutions that do not have a Dean of Undergraduate or Graduate Studies) or the equivalent as indicated – or in all cases a “Dean’s designees” appointed to handle academic grievances for the unit.
D. Academic Integrity Review Board (“AIRB”): The committee that will be appointed by the Academic Officer to review the Academic Integrity finding and sanction as referenced in Section VII (2).
E. Academic Integrity Review Process (“AIRP”): The steps described in this Regulation that govern how an Academic Integrity violation will be charged, appealed and determined.
F. Student Academic Integrity Committee (“SAIC”): The group of individuals that may be identified by a University System member as trained academic integrity volunteers. These volunteers may develop academic integrity educational modules and policies and who may be available to serve on an AIRB.
G. Academic Dishonesty is the term used to define the violation of the Academic Integrity Regulation.
H. Violations of Academic Integrity: The behaviors described below are considered violations of the academic standards for both Undergraduate and Graduate students. The academic sanctions for Graduate students may be more severe.
1. Cheating is using or attempting to use materials, information, notes, study aids, or other assistance in any type of examination or evaluation which have not been authorized by the instructor.
- Students completing any type of examination or evaluation are prohibited from looking at or transmitting materials to another student (including electronic reproductions and transmissions) and from using external aids of any sort (e.g. books, notes, calculators, photographic images or conversation with others) unless the instructor has indicated specifically in advance that this will be allowed.
- Students may not take examinations or evaluations in the place of other persons. Students may not allow other persons to take examinations or evaluations in their places.
- Students may not acquire unauthorized information about an examination or evaluation and may not use any such information improperly acquired by others.
- Instructors, programs and departments may establish, with the approval of the colleges, additional rules for exam environments and behavior. Such rules must be announced in advance in a course syllabus or other advance written notice to students.
2. Plagiarism is intentionally or carelessly presenting the work of another as one’s own. It includes submitting an assignment purporting to be the student’s original work which has wholly or in part been created by another person. It also includes the presentation of the work, ideas, representations, or words of another person without customary and proper acknowledgement of sources. Students must consult with their instructors for clarification in any situation in which the need for documentation is an issue, and will have plagiarized in any situation in which their work is not properly documented.
- Every direct quotation must be identified by quotation marks or appropriate indentation and must be properly acknowledged by parenthetical citation in the text or in a footnote or endnote.
- When material from another source is paraphrased or summarized in whole or in part in one’s own words, that source must be acknowledged in a footnote or endnote, or by parenthetical citation in the text.
- Information gained in reading or research that is not common professional knowledge must be acknowledged in a parenthetical citation in the text or in a footnote or endnote.
- This prohibition includes, but is not limited to, the use of papers, reports, projects, and other such materials prepared by someone else.
3. Fabrication, Forgery and Obstruction:
Fabrication is the use of invented, counterfeited, altered or forged information in assignments of any type including those activities done in conjunction with academic courses that require students to be involved in out-of-classroom experiences.
Forgery is the imitating or counterfeiting of images, documents, signatures, and the like.
Obstruction is any behavior that limits the academic opportunities of other students by improperly impeding their work or their access to educational resources.
- Fabricated or forged information may not be used in any laboratory experiment, report of research, or academic exercise. Invention for artistic purposes is legitimate under circumstances explicitly authorized by an instructor.
- Students may not furnish to instructors fabricated or forged explanations of absences or of other aspects of their performance and behavior.
- Students may not furnish, or attempt to furnish, fabricated, forged or misleading information to university officials on university records, or on records of agencies in which students are fulfilling academic assignments.
- Students may not steal, change, or destroy another student’s work. Students may not impede the work of others by the theft, defacement, mutilation or obstruction of resources so as to deprive others of their use.
- Obstruction does not include the content of statements or arguments that are germane to a class or other educational activity.
4. Multiple Submissions is the presenting or turning in the same or substantially the same work for credit in two or more courses. Multiple submissions shall include the use of any prior academic effort previously submitted for academic credit at this or a different institution. Multiple submissions shall not include those situations where the prior written approval by the instructor in the current course is given to the student to use a prior academic work or endeavor.
- Students may not normally submit any academic assignment, work, or endeavor in more than one course for academic credit of any sort. This will apply to submissions of the same or substantially the same work in the same semester or in different semesters.
- Students may not normally submit the same or substantially the same work in two different classes for academic credit even if the work is being graded on different bases in the separate courses (e.g. graded for research effort and content versus grammar and spelling).
- Students may resubmit a prior academic endeavor if there is substantial new work, research, or other appropriate additional effort. The student shall disclose the use of the prior work to the instructor and receive the instructor’s permission to use it PRIOR to the submission of the current endeavor.
- Students may submit the same or substantially the same work in two or more courses with the prior written permission of all faculty involved. Instructors will specify the expected academic effort applicable to their courses and the overall endeavor shall reflect the same or additional academic effort as if separate assignments were submitted in each course. Failure by the student to obtain the written permission of each instructor shall be considered a multiple submission.
5. Complicity is assisting or attempting to assist another person in any act of academic dishonesty. A student will be considered to be complicit if the student is aware of an academic integrity violation, is able to report and fails to do so. In addition:
- Students may not allow other students to copy from their papers during any type of examination.
- Students may not assist other students in acts of academic dishonesty by providing material of any kind that one may have reason to believe will be misrepresented to an instructor or other university official.
- Students may not provide substantive information about test questions or the material to be tested before a scheduled examination unless they have been specifically authorized to do so by the course instructor. This does not apply to examinations that have been administered and returned to students in previous semesters.
- Students may not have a substitute take an examination or take an examination for someone else.
6. Improper use of teamwork credit is allowing your name to be included on a group project in which you did not participate. This act is considered a violation of academic integrity. For reference, general guidelines for appropriate teamwork participation include, but are not limited to the following:
- No team member shall intentionally restrict or inhibit another team member’s access to team meetings, team work-in-progress, or other team activities without the express authorization of the instructor.
- All team members shall be held responsible for the content of all teamwork submitted for evaluation as if each team member had individually submitted the entire work product of their team as their own work.
- Only those persons who participated on the team shall be named in the submission of the assignment.
7. Solicitation or Purchase is the offering, advertising or responding to solicitations or purchasing products or services designed to facilitate, support or actively contribute to the commission of an act of academic dishonesty.
8.Misrepresentation. Submitting the work of another as your own, e.g., using a ghostwriter to write a paper, thesis, dissertation; having another person complete an on-line class in your name.
9. Misconduct in Research and Creative Endeavors is a serious deviation from the accepted academic and professional practices within a discipline or from the policies of the university in carrying out, reporting, or exhibiting the results of research or in publishing, exhibiting, or performing creative endeavors. Research Misconduct means fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism in proposing, performing, or reviewing research, or in reporting research results. It does not include honest error or differences in opinion. In addition to the academic sanctions in this Regulation misconduct in research is also subject to USF System Policy 0-301, procedures and any sanctions contained therein.
- Students may not invent or counterfeit information.
- Students may not report results dishonestly, whether by altering data, by improperly revising data, by selective reporting or analysis of data, or by being grossly negligent in the collecting or analysis of data.
- Students may not represent another person’s ideas, writing or data as their own.
- Students may not appropriate or release the ideas or data of others when such data have been shared in the expectation of confidentiality.
- Students may not publish, exhibit, or perform work in circumstances that will mislead others. They may not misrepresent the nature of the material or its originality, and they may not add or delete the names of authors without permission.
- Students must adhere to all federal, state, municipal, and university regulations or policies for the protection of human and other animal subjects.
- Students may not conceal or otherwise fail to report any misconduct involving research, professional conduct, or artistic performance of which they have knowledge.
- Students must abide by the university’s policies on Misconduct in Research where applicable, which can be found in the university’s policies and Procedures Manual at the Regulations and Policies website.
10. Computer Misuse includes unethical or illegal use of the computers of any person, institution or agency in which students are performing part of their academic program.
- Students may not use the university computer system in support of any act of plagiarism.
- Students may not monitor or tamper with another person’s electronic communications.
11. Misuse of Intellectual Property is the illegal use of copyright materials, trademarks, trade secrets or intellectual properties.
12. Violation of State or Federal laws with regard to Intellectual Property is conduct that violates and does not adhere to state or federal laws concerning the fair use of copies or other intellectual property.
V. SEVERITY OF CONDUCT DETERMINATIONS & ACADEMIC SANCTIONS
A. General Guidelines:
1. Violations for USF System Undergraduate students are classified into four (4) levels according to the nature of the infraction. For each level of violation a corresponding set of academic sanctions is recommended, however, specific academic programs may include additional and different academic sanctions. These academic sanctions are intended as general guidelines for the academic community with examples cited below for each level of violation. These examples are not to be considered all-inclusive.
2. Violations for USF System Graduate Students are not classified into levels as the instructor determines the severity of the violation, the grade and recommends any more severe academic sanction.
3. Multiple Violations:
- Graduate Studies: Graduate Students who are assigned an “FF” grade will be academically dismissed from the university and will not be eligible to apply to any Graduate program at USF. Graduate Studies may have additional guidelines and protocols available online or in the Graduate Studies catalog.
- Undergraduate Studies:
- For the first “FF” recorded in an Undergraduate student’s academic record, the student will receive a letter from the Dean of Undergraduate Studies or the Chief Academic Officer informing him or her of being placed on “Academic Dishonesty Warning” for the remainder of enrollment at USF and of appeal rights for the “FF” grade. The student may also be suspended for one (1) full semester, depending upon the level of violation.
- For the second “FF” recorded, the Undergraduate Student will be suspended for one (1) full semester and readmitted only after writing a clear statement indicating remorse, understanding of the seriousness of the offense, and understanding of the importance of integrity in all areas, including academic work. A letter informing him or her of this action and appeal rights will be sent from the Dean of Undergraduate Studies.
- The Undergraduate Student may be permanently dismissed from the university for violations of academic integrity with notice of that dismissal as a part of the formal record and transcript.
- The maximum penalty for receipt of any “FF” grade may be permanent dismissal from the university for violations of academic integrity and with a notice of that dismissal as a part of the student’s formal record and transcript.
- In the event of multiple violations, sanctions may be imposed consecutively or concurrently at the discretion of the AO.
B. Severity of Academic Integrity for Undergraduate Students: For Undergraduate Students the severity of conduct is divided into levels with specific academic related sanctions. For Graduate Studies, the instructor determines severity and academic sanctions as provided in Section V(D) below
1. Level One
Level One violations may occur because of inexperience or lack of knowledge of principles of academic integrity on the part of persons committing the violation. These violations address incidents when intent is questionable and are likely to involve a small fraction of the total coursework, are not extensive, and/or occur on a minor assignment. The following are examples:
- Working with another student on a laboratory or other homework assignment when such work is prohibited (This level is appropriate if the instructor determines it is a minor infraction).
- Failure to footnote or give proper acknowledgment in an extremely limited section of an assignment.
b) ACADEMIC SANCTIONS:
- Reduction or no credit given for the original assignment.
- An assigned paper or research project on a relevant topic.
- A make-up assignment at a more difficult level than the original assignment.
- Required attendance and tuition cost for a non-credit workshop or seminar on ethics or related subjects.
2. Level Two
Level Two violations are characterized by dishonesty of a more serious character or that which affects a more significant aspect or portion of the coursework or assignment. The following are examples:
- Working with another student on a laboratory or other homework assignment when such work is prohibited (This level is appropriate if the instructor determines it is a more serious infraction).
- Quoting directly or paraphrasing, to a moderate extent, without acknowledging the source.
- Submitting the same work or major portions thereof to satisfy the requirements of more than one course without permission from the instructor.
- Using data or interpretative material for a laboratory report without acknowledging the sources or the collaborators. All contributors to preparation of data and/or to writing the report must be named.
- Receiving assistance from others, such as research, statistical, computer programming, or field data collection help that constitutes an essential element in the undertaking without acknowledging such assistance in a paper, examination or project.
b) ACADEMIC SANCTIONS:
- Failing grade for the assignment involved with the grade in the course determined in the normal manner.
- Failing grade for the course, which may be an “F” or “FF” on the internal transcript.
3. Level Three*
Level Three is characterized by violations that affect a major or essential portion of work done to meet course requirements, involves premeditation or demonstrates repetition or both, of one or more violations of Level One or Level Two violations including repeating any one or more of the following actions:
- Copying on examinations.
- Plagiarizing major or essential portions of a written assignment.
- Acting to facilitate copying during an exam.
- Using prohibited materials, e.g. books, notes, e-flashcards or calculators during an examination.
- Collaborating before an exam to develop methods of exchanging information and implementation thereof.
- Altering examinations for the purposes of re-grading.
- Acquiring or distributing an examination from unauthorized sources prior to the examination.
- Presenting the work of another as one’s own.
- Using purchased term paper or other materials (even if the source is cited).
- Removing posted or reserved material, or preventing other students from having access to it.
- Fabricating data by inventing or deliberately altering material (this includes citing “sources” that are not, in fact, sources).
- Using unethical or improper means of acquiring data.
b) ACADEMIC SANCTIONS*:
- Failing grade for the course with a designation of “FF” on student’s internal transcript.
- Possible suspension from the university for one (1) semester.
4. Level Four*
- All academic infractions committed after return from suspension for a previous academic honesty violation.
- Infractions of academic honesty in ways similar to criminal activity (such as forging a grade form, stealing an examination from a professor or from a university office; buying an examination; or falsifying a transcript to secure entry into the university or change the record of work done at the university).
- Having a substitute take an examination or taking an examination for someone else.
- Fabrication of evidence, falsification of data, quoting directly or paraphrasing without acknowledging the source, and/or presenting the ideas of another as one’s own in a senior thesis.
- Sabotaging another student’s work through actions designed to prevent the student from successfully completing an assignment.
- Willful violation of a canon of the ethical code of the profession for which a student is preparing.
b) ACADEMIC SANCTIONS*:
The typical sanction for all Level Four violations is permanent academic dismissal from the university with the designation of “Dismissed for Academic Dishonesty” to be placed permanently on a student’s external transcript.
C. Centralized Reporting:
1.* In all Level 3 or Level 4 violations, the instructor must send a concise written statement including details of the date, time, and incident particulars (the “Report”) to the AO to consider additional academic sanctions above the grade assignment.
2. In Level 2, 3 and 4 violations, the instructor should contact the Dean of Undergraduate Studies or the Chief Academic Officer at their institution to determine if there is an office designated to track academic integrity violations/violators (Referred to as an “AIO”). If the institution has an AIO, the instructor must send a copy of the Report to the institution’s AIO. The AIO will have exclusive access to the Reports and will only share the Reports to instructors or academic advisors in the event of multiple Reports regarding a single student. This will enable appropriate handling of multiple violations.
3. As member institutions may not have a Dean of Undergraduate Studies they may establish internal protocols for centralized reporting by an internal procedure or Policy.
D. Severity of Academic Integrity for Graduate Students
1. The Office of Graduate Studies has no levels of severity as any violation may result in immediate dismissal. Students will be held to the standards provided for Graduate Studies if those students are admitted to a Graduate degree program or Graduate certificate or any student taking Graduate level courses. The instructor will determine the severity of the offense and the appropriate grade. Any student in a Graduate Studies course who receives an “FF” grade is subject to immediate dismissal and or expulsion. The grade assignments and additional academic sanctions will depend on the seriousness of the offense and may range from the receipt of:
- An “F” or “Zero” grade on the subject paper, lab report, etc.
- An “F” in the course or activity in which credit may be earned.
- An “FF” in the course (leading to expulsion from the university).
- Academic Dismissal for any violations of academic dishonesty Regulations or Policies.
- Possible revocation of the degree or Graduate Certificate following a thorough investigation.
E. “FF” Grade Guidelines:
1. Instructors may assign an “FF” grade in specific circumstances. An “FF” grade is noted on the students USF record, indicates academic dishonesty and is only reflected on internal records. Any Undergraduate Student who receives an “FF” grade in a course is restricted from repeating the course using the Grade Forgiveness Policy. For Graduate Students, an “FF” grade will lead to permanent dismissal from the university (in cases of permanent dismissal from the university a notation may be added to the official USF transcript).
2. If a student who has been accused of academic dishonesty drops the course, the student’s registration in the course will be reinstated until the issue is resolved.
3. Any final course grade may be changed to an “FF”, “F”, or other grade depending on the instructor’s decision or the ultimate resolution of the Academic Integrity Review Process. This includes any determination of a violation of the Academic Integrity Regulation that is not detected until after the student has dropped or completed the course or during or after the Academic Integrity Review Process. The actual steps for imposing the “FF” grade (which is an internal USF System designation) shall be established by each institution’s Registrar or Chief Academic Officer.
VI. PROCESS STEPS:
1. The instructor identifies or learns of an academic integrity violation.
2. The instructor identifies the severity level of the violation (see Section V(B)).
3. The instructor determines the appropriate grade assignment and use of the guidelines (included in Section V) and identifies any additional academic sanctions that may be recommended to the AO.
4. The instructor advises the student of the grade determination and recommended academic sanctions (if applicable) either in person or by email including a set date to discuss the determination (within ten (10) days of determination of the grade if possible).
5. Final Notice of Academic Sanction by the Instructor: Within ten (10) days of meeting with the student, if the instructor determines there is a grade sanction only and no recommended additional academic sanctions, the instructor may immediately assign the grade sanction and email the student notice of this final grade sanction. If the instructor does recommend additional academic sanctions, the instructor will assign the grade sanction and advise the student and AO of those recommended additional academic sanctions considered to be appropriate to the violation (Level 3 or 4 violations will include additional academic sanctions) and the process continues as detailed below.
6. Final Notice of Academic Sanction by the AO:
- Undergraduate Students: Within ten (10) days of receipt of the recommendation from the instructor, the AO will determine any additional academic sanctions, if applicable, and notify the student by email. The student may grieve the final notice by the Department level AO and ask that it be reviewed by the College Dean, who will determine if the student’s grievance is appealable. The Dean will determine the final decision for reviews involving an assignment with alleged academic dishonesty. Appeals for final grades and sanctions will be considered by the Dean and may be appealable to an AIRB (as described in Section VII: Academic Integrity Appeal).
- Graduate Students: Graduate Studies uses an internal document which processes the request for academic sanctions up to and including dismissal and the Dean of Graduate Studies provides notice to the student.
7. Reports to a designated centralized office:
The instructor or the AO may make a referral to an internal university office responsible for tracking academic integrity violations/violators if one has been designated as detailed in Section V (C).
8. If a student files an appeal (Section VII below), the final notice will not be imposed or noted until after the appeal process is complete unless the Academic Officer feels immediate action is necessary.
9. Referral to OSRR & DRIC: The Academic Offices are responsible for the AIRP and assignment of academic sanctions. If the instructor or AO determines the conduct also rises to a violation of the Student Conduct Code or the expectations and standards of the Division of Research, Integrity and Compliance (DRIC), the instructor or AO may make a referral to those offices. The instructor or AO making the referral should notify those additional offices of any pending or final academic sanction. A determination by OSRR or DRIC is separate and distinct from the AIRP and any academic sanction. The student must comply will all sanctions imposed by each office (a lesser sanction or different determination by the conduct offices does not impact the Academic sanction).
- An Academic Integrity dismissal from the University will be reflected on a student’s official transcript.
- A grade sanction (such as an “FF”) or other lower sanction is reflected on the student’s internal USF record.
VII. ACADEMIC INTEGRITY APPEAL:
If the student identifies that the determination of the academic integrity violation or related grade assignment or sanction either (1) had no factual basis or could not be reasonably inferred by the facts as presented or (2) violated a University Regulation or Policy, the student must allege the absence of factual support or basis or the specific Regulation or Policy violated and provide it as part of an academic integrity appeal. A student who has accepted responsibility for the academic integrity violation itself (either in writing or verbally) to the instructor or administrator, may not challenge the factual basis and may only appeal the severity of the sanction imposed (See Section V(B)).
The student may appeal after notice of the final academic sanction(s) which is either: (1) the instructor’s grade determination; or (2) if there are additional academic sanctions, after those additional academic sanctions are reviewed and determined by the Dean. The student may remain enrolled in their academic program until the conclusion of the appeal process unless the Dean determines that the student may not remain enrolled and advises the student in writing accordingly. Unless an Institution or College has established and referenced an alternative academic integrity or professional standards process, the appeal process steps for academic integrity issues are:
1. Student Written Appeal: After notice of the academic sanction, the student may send a written appeal to the Dean copying the instructor by email within ten (10) days of the grade determination or final academic sanction (additional time may be granted at the discretion of the Dean as necessary). If it is unclear who the designated Dean should be, the student may ask the instructor to identify the appropriate Dean. The student’s written appeal may be an email request and must contain a concise statement of the student’s position including the factual deficiency or the specific Regulation or Policy violated. This statement should include why the student feels the determination by the instructor and/or AO was not correct and must include all documentation available that supports the student’s position.
2. Initial Review of Appeal: As general complaints or disagreements with the instructors decision are not grounds for appeal and students who have accepted responsibility at any time in the process may only appeal imposed sanctions, the Dean may make an initial review of the appeal to identify the limits of the appeal and to verify that the student has clearly identified that there was no factual basis for the instructor’s determination and/or the specific Regulation or Policy violated. If the Dean elects to make this initial review, the Dean may clarify the parameters of the appeal (sanctions only), or dismiss the appeal as insufficient. The Dean must send the student and instructor notice of this determination within ten (10) days of receiving the student’s written appeal, copying the instructor’s supervisor or department chair. This will be a final University decision.
3. Dean Appointment of Board: If the Dean does not dismiss the appeal, the Dean may move the appeal forward with or without the initial review or after the review set parameters for the appeal (if it is for sanctions only). The Dean will appoint an Academic Integrity Review Board (AIRB) composed of students and instructors or administrators at the Dean’s discretion, provided that there are at least three (3) individuals, one (1) of which is an instructor or administrator and one (1) student.
4. Selection of AIRB members: Although the Dean may select any students to serve on the AIRB, if the university system member establishes a Student Academic Integrity Committee (SAIC) at that institution, and there are SAIC members available to serve, the Dean shall select the student board members from the SAIC to serve on the AIRB at that institution. The students serving on the AIRB do not need to be from the College in which the appeal was filed. However, when possible undergraduate students should serve on AIRB for undergraduate student appeals, graduate students for graduate student appeals, clinical students for clinical student appeals, and medical students for medical student appeals.
5. Meeting of the AIRB: Unless extended by written notice of the Dean or other extenuating circumstance, the AIRB will meet within three (3) weeks from the time the Dean receives the student’s written appeal. The Dean will advise the student by email of the date, time and place of the AIRB review. If the student or instructor has a justifiable conflict, the student or instructor may make one (1) written request to reschedule the review emailed to the Dean with the reason for the request, noting any known foreseeable conflicts into the next three (3) weeks. The one-time extension may be granted at the discretion of the Dean. (The timelines provided in this Regulation may be extended at the Dean’s discretion with written notice to the student and instructor).
6. AIRB Review Steps and Further Appeals:
- At the Review, the student and instructor will each be afforded an opportunity to present their position with reasonable time limits not to exceed fifteen (15) minutes per person.
- The student may bring one (1) person to serve as an advisor; however that person may not act as a legal representative, argue, present, or participate in any active way in the review, including through communications by verbal, written or electronic promptings with the student.
- Each party may be present during the other’s position statement. Neither party may ask questions of the other, argue, or respond to the other’s statement. The AIRB may question both parties at any time during the proceedings
- The AIRB will deliberate in private and render a decision within three (3) weeks of the AIRB review and offer its determination as a recommendation to the Dean (or equivalent depending on the organizational structure of the USF institution) with copy to the student by email. The student and instructor’s concise written statements will be included with the AIRB’s recommendation. The Dean will have three (3) weeks to accept or not accept the determination of the AIRB. (a) If the Dean accepts the determination of the AIRB, that is a final university decision and there is no further review available at the university. (b) If the Dean does not accept the determination of the AIRB, the Dean must refer the matter to the university level (Deans of UGS/OGS for Undergraduate and Graduate reviews, respectively or the Chief Academic Officer (See Section IV(C)). The University Level officer (a) will have three (3) weeks to make a final determination (b) may request to review any additional information necessary or may limit the review to the initial statements provided by the student and instructor upon initiation of the Academic Integrity Appeal Review and the Dean’s Statement (c) will issue a determination in writing by email to the student, instructor and the Dean. This will be a final university decision.
7. In the event the determination and final university decision is an “FF” grade with Academic Dishonesty noted and/or a related dismissal from the College or University, the student may appeal that final university decision within thirty (30) days to the Circuit Court by way of Writ of Certiorari.
Authority: Art. IX, Sec. 7, Fla. Const.; FL Board of Governors Regulation 1.001(4)(a); s.1006.60(4)FS. History – New (BOT approval) 12-11-08. Amended 12-4-14, 1-7-15 (technical), 2-18-15 (technical), 6- 3-15 (technical).
The maximum load per semester of an undergraduate student is eighteen (18) hours (fall & spring semesters) and fourteen (14) hours (summer semester) unless approval is received from the student’s college dean. In the fall or spring semester, twelve (12) hours is the minimum load for a student to be considered as full-time.
Full-time Undergraduate Student Definition – Summer Term
Sessions “A” & “B” (6 weeks)
For Academic purposes – six (6) hours or more each session
For Financial Aid purposes – must be enrolled for twelve (12) hours (undergraduate) in any combination of sessions “A,” “B” and “C”
Session “C” (10 weeks)
For Academic purposes – nine (9) hours or more
For Financial Aid purposes – must be enrolled for twelve (12) hours (undergraduate) in any combination of sessions “A,” “B” and “C”
Students receiving Veterans’ Administration benefits should confirm their Summer Term enrollment with the Office of Veteran Services.
Undergraduates may not enroll in 6000-level courses or higher without approval of the college dean in which the course is offered.
Students are expected to attend classes. An academic program or individual instructor may require a specified level of attendance as a condition for successfully completing a course. Likewise, instructors may assign a portion of final course grades based on attendance and participation. Faculty members must inform students of attendance requirements on syllabi.
Instructors should accommodate excused absences by making arrangements with students ahead of time (when possible) or by providing a reasonable amount of time to make up missed work. Arranging to make up missed work is the responsibility of the student. For graded work that requires participation in discussions, group activities, and some labs, or other in class activities, instructors will attempt to provide reasonable alternatives that accomplish the same learning outcomes. Nevertheless, an instructor may determine that missing a certain amount of participation-dependent activities (whether excused or not) precludes successful accomplishment of learning outcomes. In cases like this, instructors, academic advisors, or academic deans may advise students to withdraw from such courses. In cases where excused absences are anticipated in advance, advice on successful accomplishment of learning outcomes can be given at (or before) the start of a term.
There are two categories of excused absences for which accommodations will be made: scheduled and unscheduled. Scheduled absences involve time conflicts that are known in advance, for which students have notified their instructors. Acceptable reasons for scheduled absences include observation of religious holy days, court-imposed legal obligations (e.g., jury duty and subpoenas), special requirements of other courses and university sponsored events (e.g., performances, athletic events, judging trips), and requirements of military service. Employment schedules, athletic training and practice schedules, and personal appointments are not valid reasons for scheduled absences. Unscheduled absences involve unforeseen emergencies such as illness, injury, hospitalization, deaths in the immediate family, consequences of severe weather, and other crises. Students should contact instructors as soon as possible in these cases. Instructors may require documentation or verification to excuse unscheduled absences.
Care will be given to schedule required classes and examinations in view of customarily observed religious holy days. No student shall be compelled to attend class or sit for an examination at a day or time prohibited by his or her religious belief.
Any student who believes he or she has been treated unfairly with regard to the above may seek review of a complaint through established Student Academic Governance Procedures (found in the Graduate and Undergraduate catalogs and those provided by the University’s Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity.)
Attendance for the Observance of Religious Days by Students
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
Pursuant to Section 1006.53 Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6.0115, the University of South Florida System (USF System) establishes the following Policy regarding religious observances.
II. STATEMENT OF POLICY
All students, faculty, and staff within the USF System have a right to expect reasonable
accommodation of their religious observances, practices and beliefs.
The USF System will, at the beginning of each academic term, provide written notice of the class schedule and formal examination periods. The USF System, through its faculty, will make every attempt to schedule required classes and examinations in view of customarily observed religious holidays of those religious groups or communities comprising the USF System’s constituency.
Students are expected to attend classes and take examinations as determined by the USF System. No student shall be compelled to attend class or sit for an examination at a day or time prohibited by his or her religious belief. However, students should review the course
requirements and meeting days and times to avoid foreseeable conflicts, as excessive absences in a given term may prevent a student from completing the academic requirements of a specific course.
Students are expected to notify their instructors at the beginning of each academic term if they intend to be absent for a class or announced examination, in accordance with this Policy. Students absent for religious reasons, as noticed to the instructor at the beginning of each academic term, will be given reasonable opportunities to make up any work missed. In the event that a student is absent for religious reasons on a day when the instructor collects work for purposes of grading (homework, pop quiz, etc.), the student shall be given a reasonable opportunity to make up such work or shall not have that work averaged into the student’s grade at the discretion of the instructor.
Any student who believes that he or she has been treated unfairly with regard to the above may seek review of a complaint through established USF System Academic Grievance Procedures (found in the Graduate and Undergraduate Catalogs) and those provided by the University’s Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity.
Documented Medical Attention for Illness
Students are excused for absences due to documented illnesses that require medical attention. While students should not attend class with infectious conditions, even if medical attention is not sought, the decision to excuse absences from undocumented illnesses is at the discretion of the individual instructor. Consideration should also be given to students whose dependent children experience serious illness. Extended illnesses may interfere with the successful completion of courses, and in such cases a student should contact their academic advisor by the deadline to withdraw from a course. After the withdrawal deadline, students may submit an Academic Regulations Committee (ARC) petition with proper documentation to request to withdraw for medical reasons. Students may find additional information through the FTIC and Persistence Advisor.
Excused Absences and Make-up Work
Students must notify their instructors at the beginning of each academic term if they intend to be absent from a class or announced examination for the approved reason as noted above in accordance with this policy. In the event that a student is absent for one of these noted reasons on a day when the instructor collects work for purposes of grading (homework, quiz, etc.), the student shall be given a reasonable opportunity to make up such work or shall not have that work averaged into the student’s grade, at the discretion of the instructor.
If excused for an absence, the student is responsible for completing all academic work, examinations, assignments, and labs within a period of time and in a manner deemed appropriate by the instructor. The manner for accommodating excused absences appropriately is in the hands of the instructor, but a student who is absent for an excused reason should not be at a disadvantage when compared to other students. The approved reasons for excused absences apply even if a student in a course has the option of dropping an assignment grade (e.g., dropping the lowest quiz score). Excused absences for other reasons may be allowed or declined entirely at the discretion of the instructor.
Even if individual absences are excused, excessive absences may threaten a student’s satisfactory completion of a course. Absences may count from the first class meeting, including for students who hope to add the class after the first day.
The University respects the need for all citizens to serve on a jury when called to duty. If a student serves as a juror, class absences will be considered excused when the student provides advance notice to the instructor, the instructor acknowledges the request, and the student provides written verification of jury selection and proof of service.
Any potential student juror may notify the court of conflicts or undue hardship and request an excuse from service. The individual student must make the decision as to whether jury service will present an undue hardship and then take the affirmative action to request to be excused from service, and may need to provide a written explanation to the court. If a student does not request to be excused and is selected to serve, the student may miss a prolonged period of time resulting in the inability to complete the academic requirements of their classes.
I. INTRODUCTION (Purpose and Intent)
Students are fundamentally responsible for their registration status. Students may make
changes to their registration status and must be aware of the academic and financial impact of those changes as provided in this University of South Florida System (USF System) Policy and other related Policies and Regulations.
II. STATEMENT OF POLICY
There are several ways that students, instructors (includes primary instructor or faculty
member) or the University may adjust student course schedules. The options available are
determined by time elapsed in the semester, university deadlines, and a student’s academic
status at the time of the requested adjustment.
A. Drops or Adds during the DROP/ADD PERIOD:
The Drop/Add Period shall begin on the first day of classes and end on the date specified
in the Home Institution catalog*, but not later than the end of the first week of classes in
the term. During the drop/add period, registered students may add to, delete from, or
otherwise adjust their schedule of courses. Additionally, students may be deleted from
class rolls based on instructor notification of non-attendance at the first class meeting. (*The Registrar at the appropriate institution may establish specific drop/add periods
consistent with Financial Aid criteria for courses and programs that follow an Alternative
Calendar or are developed for a specific identified purpose outside of the regular
Students may add courses through the regular drop/add period. Students wishing to
add courses past the drop/add period must petition through their Academic
Regulations Committee (ARC) representative in the appropriate college or by Graduate
General Guidelines for Add Exceptions: Add transactions may occur on an
exceptional basis and after the end of the drop/add period when the student:
1. Initiates the formal request to be approved at the discretion of the instructor, college,
and department, following the procedures of the ARC or Graduate Studies petition;
2.Demonstrates the exception is justified by extraordinary circumstances including, but
not limited to, administrative error; and
3. Receives approval by the ARC Representative or by Graduate Studies petition.
a. First Class Day
i. Student Voluntary Cancellation Before First Class Day
Prior to the first day of classes, students may cancel their registration by
dropping all of their courses via OASIS by the end of the drop/add period.
Failure to initiate the drop may result in fee/grade liability.
ii. Instructor Initiated Cancellation Due to Student’s Failure to Attend
All instructors teaching undergraduate and graduate courses are required to take
attendance on the first day of class and to drop students who do not attend the
first day of class. Students who experience extenuating circumstances that are
beyond their control and who are unable to attend a first class meeting must
notify the instructor via email using the course management system (i.e. Canvas)
for that course prior to the first class meeting to request waiver of the first class
attendance requirement. Although instructors are authorized to affect the drop,
students are fundamentally responsible for knowing their registration status, and
the student must ensure that his/her registration status reflects the drop by the
end of the drop/add period. For Saturday only courses or courses that begin on a
Saturday, students are expected to contact the Registrar’s Office on their
respective USF campus to drop the course(s) no later than 5:00 pm on the
USF’s distance learning students must log-in to their course(s) during the first five
(5) weekdays from the calendar start date of their online course(s). Students who
are unable to log-in to their course(s) due to circumstances beyond their control
must notify the instructor or the department prior to the calendar start date of the
course to request waiver of the first class attendance requirement.
Instructors who have failed to drop a student for non-attendance during the first
week of classes should initiate the course deletion after the drop/add period, as
soon as the instructor discovers that the student has not attended the first class
meeting and never attended any subsequent class meetings. When dropped for
non-attendance, the student may be removed from the class roll and will not earn
any grade nor credits for the course.
b. Student Initiated Drop: Students may drop courses through the regular drop/add
period (as provided in each USF System Institution’s Catalog, usually within the
first five days of each term). If the course is dropped within the drop/add period,
no entry of these courses will appear on any permanent academic records, and all
refundable tuition and fees will be returned.
General Guidelines for Drop Exceptions: Drop transactions may occur on an
exceptional basis and after the end of the drop/add period when the student:
- Initiates the formal request within the University’s required deadline;
- Demonstrates the exception is justified by extraordinary circumstances including,
but not limited to, administrative error; and
- Receives approval by the ARC Committee or via Graduate Studies petition.
a.First Ten Weeks: Students may withdraw from the USF System or from individual
courses without academic penalty for the first ten weeks of any term, except for
summer sessions; however students will remain fee liable.
b. After the Tenth Week: Students will not be permitted to withdraw from a course
to avoid fee or academic penalty after the tenth week; however, appeals for withdrawal
after the tenth week of the semester may be made to the Academic Regulations
Committee (ARC) representative in the appropriate college or by Graduate Studies
Petition within the system time (See the USF Fee Adjustment Form).
c. To withdraw, undergraduate students must submit a completed ARC petition form
to the college representative of the student’s declared major (see the ARC form).
Graduate students must submit a completed Graduate Petition form to their graduate
program Advisor. No entry is made on the academic record for withdrawals
submitted during the regular drop/add period. All subsequent withdrawals (through
the tenth week of classes in the fall and spring semesters) are posted to the permanent
academic record with “W” grades assigned to the courses and tuition and fee liability
will be assessed. Students who withdraw may not continue attending class.
d. Students who stop attending classes and do not withdraw may be assessed an “F”
grade and the University may be required to report the circumstances related to the
“F” including non-attendance or non-performance in the class to Financial Aid as
required by law.
e. Withdrawal deadlines for summer sessions are listed in the Academic Calendar and
are published in the USF Schedule of Classes for Summer terms.
f. Undergraduate students who totally withdraw while on the second term of academic
probation will be academically dismissed from the USF System. When a student is
academically dismissed, approval of the Academic Regulations Committee is required
4. Auditing Privilege
Students who wish to sit in on a class to review the course material may request approval to do so; however, the student will not be permitted to take exams nor receive grades or credit. The student’s status for that class is an audit with presence in the classroom limited to listener. A student must register to audit courses by the end of the drop/add period. Fees for audit are the same as for full enrollment for credit, except out of state tuition is not charged. The separately accredited Regional Intuitions of the USF System have unique characteristics. Students, instructors, and staff must check with their home institutions and apply System-wide policies in conjunction and consistent with the specific characteristics and guidelines applicable to those Regional Institutions.
5. Tuition and Fee Liability
a. Tuition and fees for the term shall be based on the courses remaining on the record at
the close of the drop/add period.
b. No tuition and fees shall be assessed, and no grades or credits shall be awarded, for
course(s) dropped during the drop/add period.
c. If a student adds a course or courses on an exceptional basis, tuition and fees for the
added course(s) shall be assessed.
University Sponsored Activities
The University recognizes the importance of participation in University-sponsored activities such as musical and theatrical performances, athletic competition, and debate. It also recognizes that such participation may result in conflicts with scheduled class times. It is the responsibility of participating students to provide a full list of anticipated conflicting days to instructors by the end of the first week of the term, and directors and advisors of University activity programs have an obligation to assist students with this task. Students are responsible for identifying potential absences specific to a particular class and notifying individual instructors of these conflicts, especially for conflicts with scheduled examinations. Please note that a general schedule for a team or ensemble does not satisfy this notification requirement. Students should provide instructors with addenda (e.g., end-of-season tournaments, newly scheduled events, or rescheduled events) that result in new conflicts as soon as they are available. Directors and advisors of University activity programs should consult with participating students prior to registration to help them choose courses that do not have excessive anticipated conflicts.
A student’s class is determined by the number of credits he/she has earned without relation to his/her GPA.
|1F||Freshman||0 through 29 semester hours passed|
|2S||Sophomore||30 through 59 semester hours passed|
|3J||Junior||60 through 89 semester hours passed|
|4R||Senior||90 or more semester hours passes; however, no baccalaureate degree earned here or elsewhere|
|5B||Post Baccalaureate||Baccalaureate degree-holder working on a second undergraduate program or degree|
|6M||Graduate||Student admitted to Master’s Degree Program|
A syllabus of instruction for each course is available at the beginning of each term. Among the items communicated are course requirements, materials, and objectives; expected learning outcomes; and a general grading scale. The syllabus is subject to revision due to various exigencies or to better facilitate instruction, and will not include unreasonable additions to the workload described in the original syllabus. The contents of the syllabus are subject to change with reasonable notice.
Disruption of Academic Process
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
Disruptive students in the academic setting hinder the educational process. Although disruptive student conduct is already prohibited by the University of South Florida System (USF System) Student Code of Conduct and any person may make a direct referral regarding student conduct to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR) at any time for a conduct review and possible university wide sanction. This Academic Disruption Regulation provides the steps an Instructor may take to immediately address a student disrupting a class or academic setting including restricting a student from class, assigning an academic sanction or other immediate sanction. This is considered an
Academic process and provides for academic sanctions. An Instructor may/must make additional referrals to OSSR for a more comprehensive review and additional conduct sanctions which are considered separate from the Academic process.
II. STATEMENT OF REGULATION
This Regulation provides a mechanism for the Instructor to ensure a positive academic environment.
Although academic discussion may include disagreement with the course Instructor during times when the Instructor permits discussion, it is not in itself disruptive behavior and is not prohibited; the Instructor sets the parameters for classroom interaction.
Some disruptive students may have emotional or mental health disorders. Although such students may be considered disabled and are protected under the Rehabilitation Act/ADA, they are held to the same standards of conduct as any student.
Misconduct occurring on premises of all institutions of the USF System which adversely affects the University community and/or the pursuit of its mission is already prohibited by the Student Code of Conduct and will be handled by those procedures.
III. APPLICABILITY & AUTHORITY
The following applies to all institutions of the USF System; however, non-substantive procedural modifications to reflect the particular circumstances of each separately accredited institution are permitted. Information concerning these procedures is available through the Student Affairs Office at those institutions.
References to classroom or academic area include all academic settings (in class or in academic offices, live or online, field clinical experiences, fieldtrips and the communications forums established for academic use). References to Instructor include the course Instructor, USF faculty, administrators, and staff.
A. Coordination of Process:
1. As each process contemplated by this Regulation includes several levels of administrative or academic review, students must direct emails or correspondence only to the single designated office identified responsible for the current level of review. Student’s failure to adhere to this directive such as emailing all levels of administration, multiple parties not directly involved, or tangentially involved offices may be interpreted as a waiver of the review/appeal process and a failure to follow university directives.
2. As conduct that violates this Regulation may also violate others and may result in several
referrals and/or administrative review and actions, students must be aware that several offices may be contacting them such as:
a. The College/School/Department to address alleged academic disruption;
b. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR) to address possible violation
of the Student Code of Conduct;
c. The Students of Concern Assessment Team (SOCAT) to identify how to best
coordinate the resources available to assist in addressing concerns.
IV. DEFINITION OF TERMS
A. Disruption of the academic process: Disruption of the academic process is defined as the act, words, or general conduct of a student in a classroom or other academic environment which in the reasonable estimation of the Instructor:
1. Directs attention away from the academic matters at hand, such as noisy distractions,
persistent, disrespectful or abusive interruption of lecture, exam, academic discussion, or
general University operations; or
2. Presents a danger to the health, safety or well-being of self or other persons.
B. Notice: Notice will be considered final upon sending of an email to a student’s official USF email address. Additional notice may be sent at the discretion of the parties.
V. PROCESS STEPS:
(a) Instructor Response:
1. If a student is disruptive, the Instructor may ask the student to stop the disruptive behavior and/or warn the student that such disruptive behavior can result in immediate academic and/or additional disciplinary action. Alleged disruptions of the academic process will be handled initially by the Instructor, who will discuss the incident with the student whenever possible. It must be noted that the Faculty Senate considers the traditional relationship between student and Instructor as the primary means of settling disputes that may arise.
2. The Instructor is authorized to ask a student to immediately leave the classroom or academic area and desist from the disruptive behavior if the Instructor deems it necessary.* In addition, the Instructor may extend the restriction or impose the restriction after the conclusion of the class. At the time the Instructor imposes the initial restriction or extends the restriction, the Instructors are accountable for compiling and sending the scanned Academic Disruption Incident Report (details and link to Report may be found in Section 5: Documentation and Academic Disruption Incident Report below) by email to the student’s USF email address and simultaneously, within 48 hours of the restriction to:
a. The department chair;
b. The Assistant/Associate Academic Dean of the College (as determined by the
c. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR) or the separately accredited
institution’s designated office in Student Affairs; and
d. The student (the Academic Disruption Incident Report should include notice to the
student of whether the student is permitted back in class and the conditions of that
return or the duration of the exclusion).
*If the situation is deemed an emergency that requires immediate action, the Instructor should notify the appropriate law enforcement agency as soon as possible.
3. The Instructor remains responsible for the academic sanction and communication to the
student with regard to the student’s ability to return to class, regardless the filing of the report to other offices (which is required to enable the USF System to comprehensively respond beyond the immediate academic authority).
a. If the Instructor permits the student to return after the classroom incident or is
restricting the student from the classroom pending resolution, the Instructor or his/her
designee must email, call or notify the student in person that:
i. The student is excluded and for how long (may be indefinitely, permanently or
undetermined pending review);
ii. The student has the right to request an expedited review of the exclusion
within two (2) days to the Chair of the Department.
4. Possible Academic Sanctions, Actions and Guidelines
a. Authority of an Instructor and the appropriate Chair or Assistant/Associate Dean’s Office may result in any of the following sanctions:
- Warning to the student
- Voluntary withdrawal by the student from the class(es).
- Temporary exclusion and/or permanent dismissal from the Instructor’s classroom or academic area, program, or college, pending an expedited appeal.
- Academic sanction, including assignment of a final If the final determination is a dismissal from class, the grade assigned for the class will depend on the student’s status at the time of dismissal. If the student had a passing grade in the class at the time of dismissal, a grade of “W” will be assigned for the course. If the student had a failing grade in the class at the time of dismissal, a grade of “F” will be assigned for the course. These grades will become a part of the student’s permanent record. In addition, if the academic disruption results in dismissal from more than the classroom or academic area of the incident, this grading policy may be applied in all classes affected.
b. The Instructor or Academic Administrator must advise the OSRR or the separately
accredited institution’s designated office of the final Academic Sanction as soon as possible.
5. Documentation and Academic Disruption Incident Report
a. Instructors should be aware that notes of the dates, times, witnesses and details of the
incidents of disruption and the impact of the disruption on those present may be important in any future proceedings which may be necessary. The Academic Disruption Incident Report may be amended or updated at any time with additional information. The OSRR or designated office in Student Affairs requires written documentation containing factual and descriptive information. All parties are entitled to see this documentation.
b. Instructors are accountable for compiling and sending the Academic Disruption Incident
Report either by hardcopy or scanned, and sent by email to the student’s USF email address, simultaneously, within 48 hours to:
i. The department chair;
ii. Dean of the College or Designee (as determined by the College);
iii. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or the separately accredited
institution’s designated office in Student Affairs; and
iv. The student.
The form can be downloaded from the designated websites in the Academic or Student
Affairs offices and are specifically available at: http://www.sa.usf.edu/srr/docs/Acad%20Disruption%20Incident%20Report%20Form.pdf, or completed by way of memorandum containing the following information:
- Date of report
- Student’s name
- Student’s USF ID number
- Instructor’s name
- Instructor’s phone number
- Instructor’s e-mail
- Title of course, course number and section
- Date/time/location of incident
- Detailed summary of the incident, including a description of the disruptive behavior
- Action, if any, taken by the Instructor (e.g., student warned, asked to leave the class, )
- Recommended course of action and reasons for this recommendation Instructor’s signature
B. Student Response (including right to review):
1. Students must respect the immediate action taken by the Instructor. However, students do have the right to ask for a review of the Instructor’s decision or recommendation.
2. Each step in this review process must be initiated within and concluded by 48 hours of the last step. A designee may review instead of the administrative officer.
3. The student may appeal the academic decision in writing to the Chair of the Department.
The Chair must review the written appeal and decide if the student can return to the specific class and/or any academic setting. The Chair may consult with the student or Instructor or base the decision on the report submitted.
4. The student may appeal the Chair’s decision in writing to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies or Graduate Studies or the institutional officer as appropriate) for review and decision. Any decision rendered at that point must be in writing and will serve as the final and binding academic decision of the university.
5. Students should review Section III: Applicability & Authority as well as Section C: Additional Referrals and Sanctions below with regard to the possibility of multiple reviews and the need to respect the autonomy of each.
C. Additional Referrals and Sanctions:
1. Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities
Student Academic Disruptions may violate the University Student Conduct Code or possible external laws. Students will be held accountable accordingly.
Upon receipt of the Academic Disruption Incident Report or other academic referral for
disruptive conduct, the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or designated office in
Student Affairs may initiate the disciplinary process resulting in the imposition of any of the following sanctions in addition to any academic sanctions imposed (in section V(A)(4)):
- Educational sanctions to include but not limited to educational programs/classes and written assignments
- Disciplinary probation
- Provisional suspension
- Restriction from certain or all class(es), program, college, residence hall, or any part or all of USF System institutions.
2. Law Enforcement
Criminal Conduct will be handled by appropriate law enforcement agencies.
3. Sharing of Information
The Academic Office (Dean, Director or other Academic Office) that imposes the final
decision and related sanction (if applicable) will advise OSRR of any sanctions imposed by the academic area. In addition the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or designated office in Student Affairs will advise the Instructor and appropriate academic
administrators/Instructors responsible for the student’s current academic standing as soon as possible, but within two weeks of the reported incident. Only final disciplinary sanctions that affect the academic status of the student will be communicated to the Instructor(s) and appropriate academic administrators after the disciplinary process is complete.
D. Resources: direct phone contacts are provided as follows:
University Police, Non-Emergency…………………………………………(813) 974-2628
Assistant/Associate Dean’s office in schools and colleges
Department chairs and other faculty
Center for Victim Advocacy & Violence Prevention…………………………..(813) 974-5756
Counseling Center…………………………………………………………….(813) 974-2831
General Counsel…………………………………………………………..……(813) 974-2131
Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities…………………………………(813) 974-9443
Students with Disabilities Services……………………………………………..(813)974-4309
Office of Student Outreach and Support………………………………………(813) 974-6130
USF St. Petersburg
University Police, Non-Emergency……………………………………………(727) 873-4140
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs……………………………………………(727) 873-4162
Counseling Center……………………………………………………………..(727) 873-4422
Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities…………………………………(727) 873-5027
Students with Disabilities Services……………………………………………..(727) 873-4990
Campus Police, Non-Emergency (USFSM & NCF)…………………………..(941) 487-4210
Dean of Students………………………………………………………..……(941) 359-4330
Victim’s Advocate……………………………………………………………..(941) 252-5156
Counseling Center (USFSM & NCF)………………………………………….(941) 487-4254
Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities…………………………………(941) 359-4268
Students with Disabilities Services…………………………………………..…(941) 359-4714
Students of Concern Assistance Team (SOCAT)…………………………(941) 359-4714 or
Authority: Art. IX, Sec. 7, Fla. Constitution; FL Board of Governors Regulations, 1.001; 1006.60, 1006.61, F.S. History—New: 12-11-08, Amended 11-28-11, 6-25-14 (technical).
Diversity and Equal Opportunity
|Location:||ALN 172, Tampa Campus|
The University of South Florida System (USF System) community is most successful when it is based on respect and fair treatment of all people. The USF System strives to provide a work and study environment for faculty, staff and students that is free of discrimination and sexual harassment, including sexual violence. As part of the effort to maintain an environment that is comfortable for all people, the USF System establishes this Policy.
Sexual harassment, including sexual violence, is prohibited within the USF System, and complaints of such conduct are to be filed with one of two designated offices within the USF System: specifically, the Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Equal Opportunity (DIEO) or the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR). The designated office will review such complaints and provide appropriate response including counseling, mediation (in limited circumstances), and/or referral for disciplinary action, up to and including termination from employment and/or expulsion from the USF System.
Pursuant to Title IX, the University does not discriminate on the basis of sex in educational programs or activities that it operates. Such protection extends to both employees and students. Any questions or inquiries concerning to the application of Title IX may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, the Title IX Senior Deputy Coordinator, or to any of the University’s Title IX Deputy Coordinators. The most up-to-date information on the University’s Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Coordinators can be found in the webpage for the Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Equal Opportunity, located at www.usf.edu/diversity. The Title IX Coordinator is:
Cecil Howard, Chief Diversity Officer
4202 E. Fowler Avenue, ALN 172, Tampa, Florida 33620
(813) 974-0537; firstname.lastname@example.org
Discrimination and harassment on the basis of race, color, marital status, sex, religion, national origin, disability, age, genetic information, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, or veteran status are also prohibited. (Please see USF System Policy Number 0-007, Diversity & Equal Opportunity: Discrimination & Harassment).
When appropriate, the University will take steps to prevent the recurrence of harassment, including sexual violence, and to correct any discriminatory effects of harassment on the complainant and others.
General Student Grievance Process
The University of South Florida System (USF System or University) is committed to mutual respect among all constituents of the University community. This commitment includes students, faculty, staff, and administration alike. In all concerns about fair treatment, we seek to work together to understand and address those concerns in an informal setting. As there are several offices designated to address grievances throughout the University (see USF System Policy 30-053: Student Grievance Processes), with specific processes applicable to USF Health, students should first identify the topic or substance of a grievance and file the grievance with the appropriate office.
Any student concern that has a specific review process outlined in USF System Policy 30-053 must be addressed using the appropriate designated process or may be redirected to the appropriate process. As there are some grievances that may fall outside of any set Policy or Regulation or a Student may not be aware of the process availability this Policy is established as a general guideline for the USF System for students to grieve general concerns related to university departments, administration and/or staff. Most specifically, student concerns related to an academic unit’s assignment of grades or decision regarding the academic progression of a student enrolled in a course for academic credit must be addressed through the USF System Policy 10-002: Academic Grievance Procedure for Students. In addition, as each individual USF System Institution may have established internal grievance policies, the Institution specific policies shall be applied in place of, or as a first step to this Policy depending on the actual terms of the Institution policies. In addition, as individual USF System Institutions may have different levels of authority or titles, the applicable levels and titles will replace the terms of this Policy.
III. DEFINITIONS OF TERMS
- Informal General Student Complaint is the first step in the General Process and is a verbal or written claim by a student alleging improper, unfair, or arbitrary treatment by a USF System department administrator, and/or staff member or an attempt to seek guidance on how to find the appropriate office or person to assist in informally resolving a complaint with a department administrator or staff member. The Ombudsperson can be a confidential resource for students who want to discuss their options for resolving these complaints and the Ombudsperson may assist the student in resolving the issue informally or redirect the student to the appropriate office for review or formal. However, it is recommended that the student first attempt to address their complaint by discussing it with the person most directly involved with their complaint as set forth in the process below.
- Formal General Student Grievance is a written claim that may be filed if the Informal General Complaint Process does not resolve the issue and the student identifies improper, unfair, or arbitrary action by a USF System department, administrator, and/or staff member involving the application of a specific provision of a USF System regulation, policy or procedure. Formal grievance or complaints must utilize the official form.
- Time shall mean “academic time,” or “academic days” which are periods when USF System classes are in session. The person vested with authority at the appropriate level may extend any of the time periods contained herein for good cause. Any extensions must be communicated in writing to all parties. For the purposes of this Policy, each step shall be afforded three (3) weeks (21 academic days) as a standard time limit. The time line shall begin at the time of the first occurrence or at the time a student, using reasonable due diligence, should have obtained knowledge of the first occurrence of the event giving rise to the complaint. If the complaint or grievance is not presented or processed within the established limits, it shall not be considered. If a complaint or grievance is not appealed to the next step within the established time limits, it shall be considered settled (on the basis of the last answer). If, after presentation at any step, a USF System department, administrator, and/or staff member does not discuss and/or answer the complaint or grievance with the student within the established time limits, the student may treat the complaint or grievance as denied at that step and may appeal the complaint or grievance to the next step.
- Written Communication may be either e-mail or postal mail.
IV. PROCESS STEPS/SPECIFIC PROVISIONS
- Informal General Student Complaints:
- The Student must first attempt to address his/her complaint by discussing it with the person most directly involved with their complaint within the time period defined above. If the complaint is not resolved, the student may elect to elevate the complaint in writing to a Formal General Student Grievance as provided below.
- If possible, the USF System department, administrator, and/or staff member should respond by meeting with the student to attempt an agreement or resolution.
- If there is no agreement or resolution reached by a meeting, or if either party determines a meeting is not a viable alternative, the student may schedule a time to discuss the complaint with the employee’s direct supervisor. The student is responsible for providing copies of all relevant documents including emails and previous determinations from the incident and any attempt at resolution.
- The direct supervisor will review previous resolution steps, discuss the complaint with the student and other appropriate individuals, and communicate a final answer to the student in writing.
- Formal General Student Grievances:
- If the student believes that the answer or action determined by the Informal General Complaint Process has violated published policies and procedures or has been applied to the student in a manner different from other students, the student may file a formal grievance utilizing the appropriate form to the appropriate System officer as follows:
- USF: Office of the Dean of Students (In cases involving USF Health, the Dean of Students will accept the complaint and if it moves beyond level (a) below, the Dean of Students will transfer the matter for review and final determination to USF Health. USF Health will identify the appropriate reviewing officer who will provide the final determination back to the Dean of Students for record keeping purposes only).
- USFSP: Office of the Dean
- USFSM: Office of the Dean
- Grievances regarding Dean or Student Affair Administrator: If the grievance is pertaining to actions of any of the three identified persons or offices listed above, the student should file their Grievance with the Vice President of Student Affairs and Student Success or the highest level of administrative officer vested with the authority over student affairs issues at the USF System Institution.
- The Dean or System Officer (herein “Dean”) identified above will review the form and materials submitted by the student to see if the material constitutes a grievance, which must include reference to the specific policy or procedure that has been violated or applied differently to the student. If the Dean determines that the complaint does not constitute a grievance, the Dean will communicate to the student and the involved USF department, administrator, and/or staff member and the complaint and/or grievance will be considered closed.
- If the Dean* determines that the complaint and materials do constitute a grievance, the Dean shall conduct a thorough review and provide a written statement of finding to the student and the involved USF department, administrator, and/or staff member. Specific remedies will be proposed and corrective action will be recommended by the Dean. It is important to note that the Dean can only recommend corrective action and assist in communicating that action to the parties. (*In USF Health cases, this review and determination will be made by the appropriate reviewing officer with the final determination reported back to the Dean).
- If the student believes that the answer or action determined by the Informal General Complaint Process has violated published policies and procedures or has been applied to the student in a manner different from other students, the student may file a formal grievance utilizing the appropriate form to the appropriate System officer as follows:
USFSM students will be considered in Good Standing if they are currently enrolled or eligible to return to USFSM and have a 2.00 USF System GPA.
Immunization Policy USF System
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
In order to ensure the health and wellbeing of the entire community, The University of South Florida System (USF System) requires the following immunizations, prior to registration.
A. ALL STUDENTS MUST HAVE PROOF OF IMMUNITY (defined in Sec. D. below) AS FOLLOWS:
MEASLES: Proof of Immunity.
RUBELLA: Proof of Immunity.
HEPATITIS B: Proof of Immunity or signed waiver declining the vaccine.
MENINGITIS: Proof of Immunity or signed waiver declining the vaccine.
B. STUDENTS RESIDING IN ON-CAMPUS HOUSING: University Housing and Residential Education may restrict access to on campus housing or remove a person from assigned housing for failure to comply with the vaccination requirements at any time.
C. IMMUNIZATION HISTORY FORM
All students must complete and sign the USF Immunization History Form or provide supporting documentation and electronic signature on their student account.
D. PROOF OF IMMUNITY
Students must provide Proof of Immunity for each disease as follows:
a. Medical documentation of immunization with TWO (2) DOSES of live measles virus vaccine on or after the first birthday and administered at least 28 days apart. Persons vaccinated with killed, or an unknown vaccine, prior to 1968 must be re-vaccinated. Persons born before 1957 may be considered to have had a natural infection, and therefore meet the proof of immunity requirement. The documented date of immunization for measles should indicate the day, month, and year. However, month and year will suffice if the month and year indicate that the immunization was given at least 13 months after the month of birth,
b. Copy of laboratory (serologic) evidence of measles immunity (IgG rubeola titer),
c. A written, dated statement signed by a physician on his/her stationery that specifies the date seen and stating that the person has had an illness characterized by a generalized rash lasting three (3) or more days, a fever of 101˚ Fahrenheit or greater, a cough, and conjunctivitis, and, in the physician’s opinion, is diagnosed to have had the 10 day measles (rubeola).
a. Medical documentation of immunization with live rubella virus vaccine on, or after, the first birthday. Persons born before 1957 may be considered to have had a natural infection, and therefore meet the proof of immunity requirement. The documented date of immunization for rubella should indicate the day, month, and year. However, month and year will suffice if the month and year indicate that the immunization was given at least 13 months after the month of birth,
b. Copy of laboratory (serologic) evidence of rubella immunity (IgG rubella titer).
3. HEPATITIS B:
a. Medical documentation of immunization with 3 doses of Hepatitis B vaccine,
b. Copy of laboratory (serologic) evidence of Hepatitis B immunity (anti-HBs titer).
c. Signed declination (waiver) of the vaccine.
a. Medical documentation of immunization with Meningitis vaccine at age 16 or later or signed waiver of the vaccine. Declining by waiver of this vaccine is not acceptable for students in on-campus housing.
b. Signed declination (waiver) of the vaccine.
E. EXEMPTIONS WILL BE CONSIDERED AS FOLLOWS:
1. RELIGIOUS: Except for the mandatory meningitis immunization required for any student living in on-campus housing, students may request an exemption due to religious beliefs from the general immunization requirements by contacting USF Student Health Services.
2. MEDICAL: Requests for temporary or permanent medical exemptions must be submitted to USF Student Health Services by the attending physician and must include reason for exemption and duration of exemption.
3. ON-LINE COURSES: Students registered in 100% on-line courses may be exempt from the requirements of this Policy. However, if a student registers for any on-campus course at any time, the immunization requirements of this Policy will be in effect for all future courses.
In the event of a disease outbreak, students exempted from immunization requirements may be requested by the University, at the direction of public health officials, to show titer Proof of Immunity, become immunized, or remain off campus for the duration of the outbreak. All requests for exemptions will be reviewed to ensure consistency in application.
Students who fail to comply with the requirements as stated above will be blocked from registration, may be referred to Student Rights and Responsibilities, restricted from on-campus housing assignment, and/or may be subject to a registration hold. In specific circumstances a temporary override may be granted, however, vaccination requirements must be completed before further registration in subsequent terms will be permitted and current registration may be suspended if any deficiency in immunization status is identified.
|Location:||8350 N. Tamiami Trail, B116, Sarasota, FL 34243|
Parking regulations are designed to provide safe and orderly parking and to ensure emergency access to all buildings. Parking lots are available for use by students, faculty, staff and visitors. Permits are required to park at USFSM 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including holidays. Each person may purchase only one automobile permit (an additional permit for a motorcycle may be purchased). A limited number of adhesive permits are available for those with soft-top vehicles and/or special circumstances. USFSM permits may be transferred between same-owner vehicles only. If you terminate your association with USFSM for any reason, you must return your parking permit to the Parking Services Department located in Room B116 on the USFSM Campus. The departments’s regular office hours are 8:30 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday; however, office hours are extended during the first week of the academic term. Permit prices, campus maps, and a “Guide to Parking at the USFSM Campus” are available on the Parking Services website.
Violations of USFSM parking regulations may result in the issuance of parking citations and immobilization or towing of the vehicle. Any vehicle bearing a lost, stolen or altered parking permit is subject to immediate immobilization and/or towing, even if the vehicle bearing the permit is owned by the person who has reported the permit as having been lost or stolen. The vehicle owner may be subject to possible revocation of campus parking privileges.
Parking citations must either be paid or appealed within 14 calendar days of issuance to avoid incurring late fees. Any person who receives a parking citation and believes that extraordinary or mitigating circumstances warrant waiver of the fine may petition the Parking Services Department for reconsideration within 14 calendar days of receipt of the citation. Appeals must be in writing and may be submitted electronically via the USFSM Parking Services website or in person by visiting Parking Services. The Student Government Association (SGA) Judicial Branch facilitates student parking appeals at USFSM. Students may choose to have their appeal reviewed by the Parking Services Department or by the SGA Supreme Court. If an appeal is not filed within 14 calendar days from the date the citation was issued, the right to appeal is forfeited.
Failure to respond to parking citations within 45 calendar days of receipt may result in the account being transferred to a collection agency and the incurrence of additional fees. Administrative holds may also be placed on a student’s account which will prevent the student from registering for classes and receiving grades and transcripts.
Student permits are required to be purchased for the USF System campus of primary assignment. To be eligible to purchase a USFSM student parking permit, the following conditions must be met:
- USF System home campus must be designated as USFSM with the Registrar’s Office;
- Student must live within the USFSM service area (Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto, Charlotte and Lee Counties);
- Student must be taking at least 50% of classes at USFSM.
Regular USF Tampa and USF St. Petersburg parking permits are valid at USFSM; however, Park ‘n Ride or special permits from other USF System campuses are not valid on the USFSM campus. Reciprocity between USF campuses is subject to change each academic year. Parking privileges for the USF Tampa and USF St. Petersburg campuses will be posted on the USFSM Parking Services website.
Visitors Parking Permits
USFSM visitors may park in specially-designated “Visitor Only” parking spaces without a permit; however, they are required to adhere to the posted one (1) hour time limit. USFSM visitors whose university business is expected to exceed the time limitation of visitor parking may secure a free temporary permit from Parking Services, the main rotunda reception desk, or departmental office managers.
A visitor is any person who is not a member of USFSM or any USF System campus. USFSM students, faculty, staff, vendors, contractors, licensees, and those registered for any course on campus do not qualify for visitor parking privileges and may be issued citations for parking in spaces designated as “Visitor Only” parking.
Posthumous Degrees or Degrees in Memoriam
USFSM may award a posthumous baccalaureate or master’s degree to a student who was in good academic standing at the time of his or her death and who had completed all substantive requirements for the degree. The University may also award baccalaureate or master’s degrees in memoriam to a student who was in good academic standing at the time of his or her death.
To award a non-thesis degree, the student would need to have completed all courses required for the degree. Courses required for the degree, in which the student is enrolled at the time of his or her death, must have been completed to the satisfaction of the faculty so that passing grades might be posted. All other degree requirements must have been satisfied as well.
To award a thesis degree, all courses must be completed as described above and the thesis must be sufficiently complete to the satisfaction of the faculty so that certification of completion may be posted to the student’s record.
Procedures for Award of Posthumous Degrees or Degrees in Memoriam
The appropriate faculty member, on his or her own initiative or upon the request of the family of the student, may recommend a posthumous degree, or a degree in memoriam, by forwarding the recommendation to the respective college dean. If approved by the dean, the recommendation with supporting documentation will be forwarded to the Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs for approval. If approved for recommendation, the Office of the Registrar will be notified and the degree may be awarded at the next commencement ceremony or may also be presented to the student’s families in an appropriate setting.
Professional and Continuing Education
USF Sarasota-Manatee sometimes offers selective non-credit continuing education courses/programs to help individuals and organizations achieve their professional development, job training, or personal enrichment goals.
Please note that all continuing education courses are non-credit and will not transfer to another program requiring semester credits/hours.
Records and Registration
The Office of Records & Registration at USFSM, in cooperation with the USF System Registrar’s Office, is responsible for maintaining each student’s academic record from the time of admission to awarding of degree. The office provides information and services to students via OASIS, the University’s Online Access Student Information System. Using their NetID, students can register for and drop/add courses, process address changes, access registration appointment and “hold” information, request privacy statuses, view their grades, and order transcripts. Students can also browse the class Schedule Planner. Information and services are continually being added for students.
Students may receive assistance via their OASIS account, or from the USFSM Office of Records & Registration in person, via telephone, or by email.
The Office of Records & Registration provides the following services:
- Coordinates registration and drop/add activities and processes
- Reviews requests for reclassification of residency
- Processes changes of address and USF institutions
- Processes graduation applications
- Prepares enrollment verification
- Processes degree certification
- Coordinates diplomas
Students interested in requesting fee adjustments, late registration fee waivers, or posting of grade forgiveness will find information and forms on the USFSM website and in the Office of Records & Registration. Students are encouraged to contact the USFSM Office of Records & Registration with general questions concerning academic policies and procedures of their current registration or academic record. The USF System Office of the Registrar maintains the official academic records for all students and course registrations for currently enrolled students.
The student’s academic record shall not be changed after the student has graduated.
Admitted Degree-Seeking Students Registration
Continuing degree-seeking students register by appointment for their next semester’s courses during the preceding term, using the OASIS system. Registered students may make course schedule adjustments from the time of their initial registration appointment time through the first week of classes. (Deadline information is available in the Academic Calendar.)
Degree-seeking students who do not register prior to the posted deadline may late-register during the first week of classes, however, a $100.00 late registration fee is charged during this week. (See the section on fees for additional information and the appropriate term’s Schedule of Classes for dates.) To avoid cancellation of registration, fees are due for all registered courses of record on the fifth day of classes (end of drop/add period). (See Academic Calendar for dates.)
Mandatory Medical History Form is required for all students (regardless of age)
According to Florida Administrative Code Rule 6C-6.001(5), “Each student accepted for admission shall, prior to registration, submit on a form, provided by the institution, a medical history signed by the student.”
After a student has completed his/her registration on the date assigned, he/she may add courses until the add deadline specified in the Academic Calendar. See the appropriate semester’s University Schedule of Classes for detailed instructions and dates.
A student may be placed on administrative hold by failure to meet obligations to the University. When a student is on administrative hold, he/she may not be allowed to register, receive a diploma, or receive a transcript. Settlement of financial accounts must be made at the University Cashier’s Office. Each student placed on administrative hold should determine from OASIS which office placed him/her in this status and clear the obligation with that respective office.
Auditing Privileges and Fees
A student who wishes to sit in on a class to review the course material may do so; however, the student will not earn grades nor receive credit.
The student’s status for that class is an auditor and his/her presence in the classroom is as a listener. While auditors are considered “listeners” only, it is at the faculty member’s discretion whether, and to what extent, an auditor may participate in the class discussion and activities.
Audit status must be obtained during the first five (5) days of the term by filing an Audit Form with the Registrar’s Office and obtaining permission from the college/department on the campus where the course is being offered. In-State fees are assessed for all audit courses.
Cancellation of Registration
Students may cancel their registration by logging-in to OASIS and dropping all their classes prior to the end of the fifth day of classes. If fees have already been paid, the student may request a full refund of fees from the Cashier’s Office.
In the interest of openness and building trust with our students, the USF System now affords students the right to limit data usage and sharing of their information, without having to request non-disclosure of directory information under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Pursuant to the requirements of FERPA, the following types of information designated by law as “directory information” can be released, if the student has not requested privacy or non-disclosure: Name, Date of Birth, Address, Telephone, Major, Dates of Attendance, Enrollment Status, Degrees, and Prior Institutions Attended. *All other student data is considered to be protected.
Under new USF System policy which is less restrictive than privacy under FERPA, students may now request confidentiality as a way to “opt out” from having their personal contact information (i.e. name, address, telephone) disclosed to vendors, credit card companies, or outside agencies that are not providing a service that would otherwise be performed by the University. To request confidentiality, go to http://www.usf.edu/registrar/resources/privacy.aspx.
Degree and Non-Degree Definitions
Students who have been accepted into a degree program.
Students who have not been accepted into a degree program. Non-degree-seeking students may enroll and enter classes on a space available basis by obtaining appropriate approval from the degree-granting college or academic unit in which the courses are offered. Non-degree-seeking students must meet all prerequisites for courses in which they wish to enroll. Certain classes are available only to degree-seeking students and may not be available for non-degree-seeking students.
Should a student be accepted into a graduate degree program, no more than twelve (12) hours of USF system credit earned as a non-degree-seeking student may be applied to satisfy graduate degree requirements. All coursework transferred into the graduate program must have a grade of “B” or better. Any application of such credit must be approved by the degree-granting college and must be appropriate to the program. Prior to completing twelve (12) hours in a specific degree program, it is strongly recommended that a non-degree-seeking student apply for admission, and be accepted, to the degree program to continue taking courses in the program. Programs may have additional requirements. Students should check with the program of interest for more information.
Florida Residency for Tuition Purposes
This notice summarizes the provisions of Florida School Code (SB20-E) Section 1009.21 and University Policy/Procedure concerning Florida Residency for Tuition Purposes. In determining residency classification, students fall into one of two categories. They are either independent students (students not claimed on parent’s or legal guardian’s federal income tax statement or whose parents do not provide 50% or more of their support) or dependent students (students, regardless of age, who are claimed as dependents by parent or legal guardian on federal income tax statement or whose parents provide 50% or more of their support). The law requires that a U.S. citizen/permanent resident alien/independent student or a dependent student’s parent/legal guardian has established and maintained a LEGAL Florida residence for at least twelve (12) months before the first day of classes of the term for which Florida residency status is sought. The USF System is required to obtain documentation of 12 months of legal residence before a student is classified as a Florida resident for tuition purposes. A student is required to request Florida residency in writing and submit supporting documents no later than the fifth day of classes in the term for which classification is sought.
The following is acceptable, non-conclusive evidence of the establishment of a legal residence in Florida. Two documents must be dated/issued at least 12 months before the first day of classes of the term for which Florida residency is sought.
At least one (1) of the two documents must be from this list:
- Florida voter’s registration
- Florida driver’s license
- State of Florida identification card
- Florida vehicle registration
- Proof of purchase of permanent home in Florida occupied as primary residence
- Proof of homestead exemption in Florida
- Official transcripts from a Florida high school for multiple years (two (2) or more years), if the Florida high school diploma or GED was earned within the last 12 months
- Full-time, non-temporary employment in Florida for at least 30 hours per week for a 12-month period
Claimant may be provided one (1) or more documents from the following list to be used in conjunction with one document from above.
- Declaration of Domicile in Florida
- Florida issued professional/occupational license
- Florida incorporation
- Documents supporting claimant’s request for resident status, include, but not limited to, utility bills and proof of 12 consecutive months of payments, a signed residential lease agreement and proof of 12 consecutive months of payment; or an official state, federal or court documented legal ties to Florida
- Proof of membership in a Florida-based charitable or professional organization
Rent receipts, leases, employment records, tax returns, school/college records are NOT evidence of establishing a legal Florida residence. Students who are dependent on out-of-state parents or who come to Florida for educational purposes are generally ineligible for reclassification to Florida status. In rare cases, the law allows some students (e.g., military, public school teachers, etc.) who do not meet the basic requirements to be classified as Florida residents for tuition purposes. For more information about exceptional categories, contact the Admissions or Registrar’s Office.
Student Information Changes
Notifications regarding changes of address, name, residency, and citizenship should be filed promptly with the USFSM Office of Records & Registration.
Student Information Release
Pursuant to requirements of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), the following types of information, designated by law as “directory information,” may be released via official media of USF (according to USF regulation):
Student name, major field of study, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, degrees and awards received, and full- and part-time status.
The University Directory, published annually by the University, contains only the following information: student name, campus phone, campus mail stop, classification, and major field of study. The Directory and other listings of “directory information” are circulated in the course of University business and, therefore, are accessible to the public, as well as to students, faculty, and staff.
Students must inform the USF System Office of the Registrar in writing (forms available for that purpose), if they wish directory information to be withheld. Such requests must be received within the first two (2) weeks of the semester and will remain in effect until the student has not been enrolled at USF System institution for three (3) consecutive terms.
Notification to the University of refusal to permit release of “directory information” via the University Directory must be received no later than the end of the first week of classes in the Fall semester.
Transcripts of a student’s USF System institution academic record may be released only by authorization of the student online at oasis.usf.edu, or in person, or by writing to the Office of the Registrar. By law, requests must include the student’s identification number, the date, and the student’s signature. Requests can also be made through OASIS, the University of South Florida’s Online Access Student Information System—log in with your NetID and self-assigned password, which acts as your electronic signature. In order for transcripts to be issued, the student must have no financial obligations to the University. Transcripts are normally mailed/ready for pickup within two business days after the request is received.
The transcript request form can be found at http://catalog.usfsm.edu/registration/registration-forms/.
To order transcripts by mail, send payment ($10.00 per copy, check or money order only) and form to the following address:
Transcript Clerk, Registrar’s Office
4202 E. Fowler Avenue
Tampa, FL 33620-6950
To order a transcript in person, hand-carry payment (check, money order or cash) and completed request form to the USFSM Cashier’s Office located at USF Sarasota-Manatee, Room SMC-B116. Note: Transcript fees are subject to change.
Students can pick up a transcript from the Office of Records & Registration on the Sarasota campus, usually within 48 business hours after paying in-person at the Sarasota Cashier’s Office. If you order a transcript “for pickup” in OASIS, you may choose from which campus you wish to pick up.
USFSM degree-seeking students who wish to enroll at another regionally accredited institution should have prior written approval from their college academic advisor to be certain that the work they complete will apply toward their degrees at USFSM. The transient student/cross enrollment form located at the website address www.floridashines.org should be used for this purpose.
Student Code of Conduct
I. PURPOSE AND INTENT/STATEMENT OF REGULATION
A. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR) supports the mission, goals, values and vision of the University of South Florida System (“University” or “USF”) by promoting a community that values individual responsibility and the adherence to community standards as embodied in this Regulation (“Student Code of Conduct”). Through the conduct process, OSRR engages students in personal and social responsibility.
B. OSRR’s goal is to encourage and develop standards of behavior and critical thinking that will create a community of leaders and citizens’ and enhance the USF environment for community members living, studying and working within the University. By engaging students in one-on-one interactions with staff trained in student development and through group interactions with the University Conduct Board, USF students are challenged to assess and reassess their framework of principles and behavioral norms that support a healthy community.
C. The University supports student learning and development through outreach: faculty training on student classroom conduct and managing the classroom. This prepares our faculty and students to deal with conflicts and mutually agreed upon community standards.
A. The University values a community based on the principles of inclusivity, ethics, and civility. As such, the University community expects students to behave in a manner that supports this purpose. This Student Code of Conduct is a document which describes behavior that is counteractive to this purpose and how the University will hold students accountable for those inappropriate behaviors. Student organizations are also disciplined under this Student Code of Conduct. Failure of a student or student organization to comply with federal or state laws or University regulations and policies may subject the student or student organization to appropriate civil and criminal authorities. If the student is suspended or expelled, a record of a violation of University regulations and/or policies will be maintained in the student’s or student organization’s disciplinary file in the OSRR and may be maintained in the Office of the Registrar.
B. University jurisdiction and discipline extends to conduct which occurs on University premises or which adversely affects the University community and/or the pursuit of its mission. Specifically, University officials may initiate disciplinary charges for conduct off campus when the behavior relates to the good name of the University; the integrity of the educational process; or the safety and welfare of the University community, either in its public personality or in respect to individuals within it; or violates state or federal law.
C. Students are responsible for compliance with all public laws as well as University rules, policies and regulations. Students are responsible for their guests’ compliance as well.
D. Students are responsible for knowing the information, policies, and procedures outlined in this Student Code of Conduct. The University reserves the right to make changes to the Code as necessary. Students are encouraged to check online at generalcounsel.usf.edu for the most updated versions of all policies and regulations.
E. The University strongly encourages Complainants of sexual harassment to file a complaint and note that for some persons the filing of a complaint may be compulsory. Complaints may be filed with the designated offices detailed in this Student Code of Conduct and/or in Policy 0-004 Sexual Misconduct/Sexual Harassment (Including Sexual Violence).
F. Any individual may refer a student for an alleged violation of this Student Code of Conduct by filing a written referral with OSRR. OSRR also reserves the right to initiate or follow up any investigative leads where there is reasonable belief of possible violations of this Student Code of Conduct.
G. The conduct process may be initiated against a student charged with conduct that potentially violates both the criminal law and/or the Student Code of Conduct without regard to the pending civil or criminal litigation in court or criminal arrest and prosecution. The conduct process under this Regulation may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings off campus at the discretion of OSRR. Determinations made or sanction(s) imposed as a result of this Student Code of Conduct process shall not be subject to change because criminal charges arising out of the same facts giving rise to violation(s) of University policies were dismissed, reduced, or resolved in favor of or against the criminal law defendant. Members of the University community, who commit offenses against the laws of municipalities, states, or the United States, are subject to prosecution by those authorities and may be subject to disciplinary action under University rules when their conduct violates institutional standards. Student shall not be forced to present self-incriminating evidence; however, the University is not required to postpone the conduct process pending the outcome of any civil or criminal case.
III. DEFINITION OF TERMS
A. “Administrative Hold” refers to a restrictive hold being placed on a student’s record at any point in the conduct process to assure compliance with sanctions or pending the resolution of conduct matters. When terms and conditions of sanctions have been satisfied and/or pending conduct matters have been resolved, the hold may be removed.
B. “Administrative Hearing Officer” is a University faculty or staff member designated by the Director of OSRR or the Dean of Students, or the designated University official, who will hear the case, hearing both the student explanation of events and the information presented by OSRR during the Formal Hearing.
C. “Advisor” refers to any one person chosen by the Referred Student, Charged Student, Complainants, or a witness to assist them throughout the conduct process. While an advisor may assist a student, the Advisor may not speak on the student’s behalf or otherwise take an active role in the conduct process.
D. “Alleged Victim” is a term that may be used to reflect a person that alleges any personal harm or injury from an alleged violation of this Student Code of Conduct depending on the specific facts of a case. At times, to avoid duplication or wordiness, the term victim may be used to refer to an alleged victim.
E. “Charged Student” means the student against whom the Initial Review Officer has filed official charges.
F. “Complainant” is a term used in this Regulation to refer to the person who submits a referral alleging that a student or organization violated the Student Code of Conduct. In specific cases, the Complainant may not be the actual victim or the alleged victim. Recognizing that the law provides victims and alleged victims specific rights and non- victim complainants may not have the same rights or protections, this Code will use “Complainant” as a general term and the Code will be applied to fit the particular circumstances at the discretion of OSRR.
G. “Conduct Process” refers to the entire process outlined in this Student Code of Conduct, including Initial Review, Emergency Provisional Suspension Review, the Formal Hearing, and Appeal process.
H. “Days” in terms of process is defined as the normal business day and will not include Saturdays, Sundays, or legal holidays/University administrative holidays when the campus is closed for business.
I. “Dean of Students or designee” is the individual who will hear an appeal following a Formal Hearing.
J. “Deferred” is usually used in sanctioning in reference to suspension or cancellation of housing that is suspended or withheld for, or until, a certain time or event (usually at the end of a semester).
K. “Deferred Adjudication” refers to the process when a student is responsible for a violation but the circumstance would allow for an alternative resolution of the situation. The finding is deferred by the Initial Review Officer until the completion of all requirements (sanctions and/or restrictions). In order to receive deferred adjudication, the student must begin by accepting responsibility. At the completion of all requirements the student is adjudicated “not responsible” and the case is listed on a students’ record as a dismissal after the completion of deferred adjudication.
L. “Formal Hearing” or “Hearing” is the event elected by the Charged Student which can be conducted before an Administrative Hearing Officer or a University Conduct Board after charges have been filed by the Initial Review Officer.
M. “Final OSRR Decision” is the finding rendered either upon acceptance of responsibility by the Charged Student or as rendered at the conclusion of the Formal Hearing.
N. “Final University Decision” is the finding of the Dean of Students as issued in the Dean’s Decision on Appeal Letter.
O. “Impact Statement” is an oral or written statement provided by the Complainant in cases of violent misconduct or when requested by OSRR that states the impact the incident has had on the Complainant’s personal and educational experience at the University since the incident took place. This statement is reviewed during the sanctioning portion of the Formal Hearing if the Charged Student is found responsible for a violation of this Student Code of Conduct.
P. “Informational Conference” is a meeting where the OSRR Title IX Investigator can fully review the conduct process, provide an overview of a Title IX investigation, and discuss all available resolution options with students.
Q. “Initial Review Officer (IRO)” means a University official authorized to meet with students regarding referrals made for possible violations of this Student Code of Conduct. The meeting is known as the “Initial Review Meeting”. After the Initial Review Process, the Initial Review Officer provides a Charge Letter which is either that the Referral be dismissed or that the Referral be moved forward with specific charges referencing violation(s) of this Student Code of Conduct and educational sanctions.
R. “May” is used in the permissive sense.
S. “Member of the University community” includes any person who is a student, faculty member, University official, or any other person with an ongoing relationship or involved with or employed by the University.
T. “Notice” is the written communication either by correspondence or email that provides information to a student. Notice is conclusively presumed to be final when such communication is sent to the student by official University email, and/or mailed to the address appearing on either the student’s current local address or permanent address on record with the University at the discretion of OSRR.
U. “Offense” means the action that represents a violation of this Student Code of Conduct.
V. “Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities (OSRR)” or designee is the person(s)/area designated by the USF System President to be responsible for the administration of this Student Code of Conduct. Refer to Section (IV)(I) for offices listed.
W. “OSRR Notices” (Initial Review Letter, Charge Letter, Hearing Decision Letter, and Dean’s Decision on Appeal Letter):
1. “Initial Review Letter” refers to notice from OSRR to a Referred Student, which states that a Referral has been made and informs the student of an opportunity for a meeting. If the student chooses not to attend, the Initial Review Officer reserves the right to have an In Absentia Review, at which point a Charge Letter will be sent to the student.
2. “Provisional Suspension Letter” refers to a letter sent to a Referred Student explaining that a Referral has been received and the circumstances explained in the Referral are severe enough to cause concern for the safety and well-being for the USF campus and community. This letter states that the Referred Student is immediately suspended from the University (the right to be on campus and attend in person or virtual classes) and/or from participating in official University functions, programs, intercollegiate competitions, and other student activities pending an emergency Formal Hearing. This Formal Hearing is held to determine if the Referred Student can return to campus and class while the conduct process continues.
3. “Charge Letter” refers to notice issued by the Initial Review Officer, stating that a referral has been dismissed or moved forward in the conduct process. In the case where the referral has been moved forward, the Letter will include the notice of the charges and recommended sanctions that may be accepted by the Charged Student or reviewed in a Formal Hearing, which may result in a not responsible finding or a responsible finding, which could result in greater or lesser sanctions.
4. “Hearing Decision Letter” refers to the notice from the OSRR to a Charged Student stating the Formal Hearing outcomes and sanctions.
5. “Dean’s Decision on Appeal Letter” refers to the notice from the Dean of Students, or designee, at the conclusion of the appeal process. The Dean’s Decision is considered the Final University Decision.
X. “Policy” means the written and published policies or regulations of the University as found in, but not limited to, this Student Code of Conduct, the residence halls, the library, parking, regulations governing the use of technology and information systems, those regarding the Student Identification Card, and Graduate/Undergraduate Catalogs concerning students and student organizations. Other policies include those related to building and classroom use, to dining services, to campus recreation, and to any regulation of the Board of Trustees.
Y. “Referral” means the written documentation provided to OSRR alleging that a violation of this Student Code of Conduct may have occurred.
Z. “Referred Student” is the person who has been named in the Referral provided to OSRR to have allegedly violated this Student Code of Conduct.
AA. “Student” for the purposes of this Student Code of Conduct, includes all persons, registered student organizations, or a person who has an active application for admission, housing, or any other service provided by the University, which requires student status. The term “student” includes all persons taking University courses, either full-time or part-time, pursuing undergraduate, graduate, non-degree seeking, or professional studies. Persons who withdraw after allegedly violating this Student Code of Conduct, or who are not officially enrolled for a particular term but who have a continuing relationship with the University, or who have been notified of their acceptance for admission are considered students.
BB. “Student organization” means any group of students who have complied with the requirements for registration and are officially recognized by the University as a registered organization. These include, but are not limited to, political groups, fraternities and sororities, student sports clubs (recognized by Campus Recreation), and all other registered student organizations of the University.
CC. “University” means the University of South Florida System, including any member institution affiliated with the USF System.
DD. “University Conduct Board” is a panel of faculty, staff, and students who have been trained to hear conduct cases and make decisions related to reported violations of this Student Code of Conduct. Students will make up at least one-half of the membership of any University Conduct Board Formal Hearing panel. The panel will adjudicate the conduct case, hearing both the student explanation of events and the information presented by OSRR.
EE. “University official,” for the purposes of this Student Code of Conduct, means any representative of a USF System direct service organization, USF System board, committee, office, or member of the USF System faculty, administration, or staff. According to this Student Code of Conduct, this definition includes student staff acting in accordance with their assigned duties.
FF. “University premises” includes all land, buildings, facilities, and other property in the possession of or owned, used, or controlled by the University (including adjacent streets and sidewalks).
GG. “Victim” is a term that may refer to either (1) the person who alleges any personal harm or injury from a Referred Student who committed an alleged violation of this Student Code of Conduct or (2) a person that alleges suffering personal harm or injury from an alleged violation of this Student Code of Conduct depending on the facts of a case, and alternately known as an alleged victim.
HH. “Will” is used in the imperative sense.
II. “Witness” is used to define an individual who is in the proximity of an incident and viewed the actions of said incident or who has relevant information about a given incident or actions related to a specific incident.
IV. PROCESS STEPS
A. Rules of Conduct:
Each student is expected to abide by these Rules of Conduct. These Rules of Conduct should be read broadly and are not designed to define prohibited conduct in exhaustive terms. Further, some of the below Rules of Conduct are a part of a larger University regulation or policy. When applicable, the University regulation or policy is the overarching document when referring to these Rules of Conduct. The commission, aiding, abetting, attempting, or inciting of any of the following actions constitutes an offense for which a student or a student organization may be subject to the student conduct process.
(4.01) Theft – The unauthorized taking, misappropriation or possession of any real, personal, or intellectual property or services provided, owned or maintained by the University or by any person. “Services” includes, but is not limited to, unauthorized copying of software and acts considered to be in violation of copyright laws.
(4.02) Misuse of Property – Destruction, damage, misuse, or defacing of, or unauthorized entry into or otherwise accessing University buildings or property, private property, and/or personal property.
(4.03) Misuse of Materials – Unauthorized accessing, removing, duplicating, photographing, and/or forging, counterfeiting, altering or misusing of any University material (including University intellectual property), file document or record, computer records, software, data files and similar entities owned or maintained by any member of the University faculty, administration, staff, or student body.
(4.04) Weapons, Firearms, or Explosive Devices – The illegal possession, storage, use or sale of any weapon (lethal or non-lethal), firearm, or any incendiary, explosive or destructive device. Refer to Policy 6-009 Weapons on USF System Property.
(4.05) Harassment – Conduct which creates an unsafe, intimidating or hazardous situation that interferes with the ability of a University student or employee to study, work, or carry out University functions. Refer to Policy 0-007 Diversity and Equal Opportunity: Discrimination and Harassment.
(4.06) Stalking – To follow another person or repeatedly interact with a person so as to harass that person, or a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for her, his or others safety or to suffer substantial emotional stress.
(4.07) Hazing – Hazing means any action or situation that recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student for the purpose of initiation to, admission into, or affiliation with, an organization. Any University community member who has knowledge of or has reason to believe that hazing has taken place is required to report. Refer to USF6.0023 Prohibition of Hazing.
(4.08) Disorderly Conduct – Breach of peace, such as causing a disturbance or being unruly.
(4.09) Disruptive Conduct – Actions that impair, interfere with or obstruct the orderly conduct, processes and/or functions of the University. Disruptive conduct shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
1. Interference with freedom of movement or with the right to address an audience of any member or guest of the University;
2. Impeding or interference with the rights of others to enter, use or leave any University facility, service or scheduled activity, or carry out their normal functions or duties;
3. Interference with academic freedom and freedom of speech of any member or guest at the University;
4. Actions that disrupt, endanger, or disturb the normal functions of the University or the safety of a person or persons. This includes interfering with an investigation, in any way, of OSRR.
(4.10) False Alarm – Issuing a bomb threat or other warning of impending disaster without cause. Intentional misuse, disabling, or tampering with any fire alarm or fire safety equipment.
(4.11) Threats of Violence – An intentional threat by word or act to do violence to a person or persons.
(4.12) Injurious Behavior – When one person actually and intentionally touches or strikes a person or persons against their will, or intentionally causes bodily harm.
(4.13) Reckless Injurious Behavior – Conduct that may be unintentional, but is with conscious disregard for its consequences to person(s) or property and results in actual or potential damage, injury, or harm to a person(s).
(4.14) Sexual Harassment – unwelcome conduct directed at a person based on the person’s gender or sexual orientation that is so sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it unreasonably interferes with, denies, or limits someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the college’s educational program and/or activities, and is based on power differentials (quid pro quo), the creation of a hostile environment or retaliation, which includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature. The prohibited conduct may include actions which meet the definition provided by criminal statutes such as battery or assault. Refer to Policy 0-004 Sexual Misconduct/Sexual Harassment (Including Sexual Violence).
Sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to:
(4.14)(a) Sexual Exploitation – occurs when a student takes non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another for the student’s own advantage or benefit, or to benefit or advantage anyone other than the one being exploited, and that behavior does not otherwise constitute one of other sexual misconduct offenses. Examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:
(i) invasion of sexual privacy;
(ii) prostituting another student;
(iii) non-consensual video or audio-recording of sexual activity;
(iv) going beyond the boundaries of consent (such as letting your friends hide in the closet to watch you having consensual sex);
(v) engaging in voyeurism;
(vi) knowingly transmitting an STI or HIV to another student;
(vii) exposing one’s genitals in non-consensual circumstances;
(viii) inducing another to expose their genitals;
(ix) sexually-based stalking and/or bullying may also be forms of sexual exploitation.
(4.14)(b) Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse – Any sexual intercourse however slight, with any object, by any individual upon another individual that is without consent and/or by force. Intercourse includes vaginal penetration by a penis, object, tongue or finger, anal penetration by a penis, object, tongue, or finger, and oral copulation (mouth to genital contact or genital to mouth contact), no matter how slight the penetration or contact.
(4.14)(c) Non-Consensual Sexual Contact – Any intentional sexual touching, however slight, with any object, by an individual upon another individual, that is without consent and/or by force. Sexual Contact includes intentional contact with the breasts, buttocks, groin, or genitals, or touching another with any of these body parts, or making another touch you or themselves with or on any of these body parts; any intentional bodily contact in a sexual manner, though not involving contact with/of/by breasts, buttocks, groin, genitals, mouth, or other orifice.
(4.14)(d) Unwanted or Unwelcome Sexually Oriented Attention – unwanted or unwelcome sexually-oriented remarks or behaviors, that are so sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive, on the part of a person who knows or ought reasonably to know that such remarks or behavior unreasonably interferes with, denies, or limits someone’s ability to participate in or benefit from the college’s educational program and/or activities.
(4.15) Misuse or Possession of Illegal Drugs – Failure to abide by Policy 0-610 Drug-Free Workplace. Possession, use, sale, or attempt to obtain any illegal drug. The term “drugs” includes, but is not limited to, any narcotic drug, central nervous system stimulant, hallucinogenic drug, barbiturate, or any other substance treated as such and defined by the law. Further, the unauthorized possession or use of a regulated or controlled substance, including prescription drugs and paraphernalia used for drugs is a violation. Attending class, an organizational meeting or other University event that is specific for an educational purpose while under the influence of drugs, as noted in this Section, is a violation.
(4.16) Gambling – Conducting or organizing any form of games of chance.
(4.17) Misuse of Alcohol – Failure to abide by Policy 30-023 Alcohol Policy and all University protocols and policies and state and federal law regarding alcohol. Specific Student Code of Conduct standards include, but are not limited to:
1. The sale of, or intent to sell, alcohol without a proper license.
2. Providing alcohol to any person who is not of legal age to possess or consume alcohol.
3. Possession or consumption of alcohol by persons not of legal age.
4. The operation of a motor vehicle by a person under the age of 21 while having a blood alcohol level of .02 or higher.
5. The operation of a motor vehicle, by an individual of any age, under the influence of alcohol.
6. The consumption of alcohol on streets, according to local ordinance.
7. Public intoxication.
8. Conducting an open house party which can include, but is not limited to, an event at which minors may possess or consume alcohol.
9. Attending class, an organizational meeting or other University event that is specific for an educational gain while under the influence of alcohol is a violation.
(4.18) False Information – Knowingly making a material false oral or written statement to any University official. This includes forgery, unauthorized alteration or misuse of any document, record, or instrument of identification. Also includes withholding material information from the university, misrepresenting the truth before a hearing or proceeding of the University, and making false statements to any university official.
(4.19) Bribery – Offering or accepting a bribe or inducement that would impinge upon or compromise the integrity of academic work product, student performance, or the unbiased and professional duty of faculty and staff or student of the University.
(4.20) Failure to Respond to Instructions – Failure to comply with authorized official requests (oral or in writing) from or in agreement with University officials acting in accordance with their assigned duties.
(4.21) Violation of University Policy and/or Local Ordinance, State, or Federal Law (as determined by the University) – Failure to adhere or abide by policies including, but not limited to, local ordinance, state law or federal law. Adjudication by an outside entity is not a prerequisite to a determination of responsibility by the University.
(4.22) Violation of Probation – Failure to abide by the conditions of probation which resulted from previous behavior that was deemed unacceptable at the University level.
(4.23) Complicity – assisting or attempting to assist another person in any act of violating the student code of conduct.
(4. 24) Specific Acts of Violence – An act which falls into any one of Sections listed below as 4.24(a) and 4.24(b):
(4.24)(a) Domestic Violence – Conduct that includes asserted violent misdemeanor and felony offenses committed by the Complainant’s current or former spouse, current or former cohabitant, person similarly situated under domestic or family violence law, or anyone else protected under domestic or family violence law.
(4.24)(b) Dating Violence – Conduct that includes violence by a person who has been in a romantic or intimate relationship with the Complainant. Whether there was such relationship will be gauged by its length, type, and frequency of interaction.
(4.25) Retaliation – Violence, threats or adverse action taken by a student against any individual who, in good faith, has made any allegation of sexual harassment or who has testified, assisted, or participated in any way in any investigation, review, or Formal Hearing conducted under this Student Code of Conduct or any federal or state law.
B. Stages of Conduct Process:
1. Receipt of Referral: OSRR receives a Referral that is filed within a reasonable time following the discovery of the alleged violation and no later than six (6) months after the discovery, except in extraordinary cases. A Referral may be initiated by a student, faculty member, University Police personnel, staff member, office personnel, or interested party to the University. The Director of OSRR or designee may request information concerning prior misconduct of the Referred Student from the University Police and other appropriate persons or offices. OSRR will then send the Referred Student notice of the Referral through either (1) an Initial Review Letter informing the Referred Student of the Initial Review Process, or (2) a Provisional Suspension Letter informing the Referred Student of the Provisional Suspension Process. This notice will be sent to the Referred Student’s University email account on file with the Office of the Registrar. For student organizations, this notice will be sent to the University email account of the presiding officer of the organization (President).
2. Initial Review Process:
a. If the University does not impose a Provisional Suspension, OSRR will notify the Referred Student that a Referral has been made by sending the Referred Student an Initial Review Letter. The Initial Review Letter will inform the Referred Student of an alleged incident that took place and will either request the Referred Student schedule a meeting or will inform the Referred Student that a meeting has already been scheduled. The Initial Review Letter will also include notice to the Referred Student of any interim temporary restriction or sanctions if appropriate. If the Referred Student(s) appear(s) for the Initial Review Meeting, an Initial Review as to the appropriate charges will be made by the Initial Review Officer. If the Referred Student(s) fails to appear for the Initial Review Meeting (or any step in this process), the Initial Review Officer will conduct an In Absentia Review (a review without the Referred Student present) and make a determination as to the appropriate charges to be filed and send the Charge Letter. The Initial Review Officer will conclude the Initial Review Process within six (6) weeks of Receipt of Referral, unless an extension is necessary as determined and documented by the Initial Review Officer.
3. Conclusion of Initial Review Process:
a. At the conclusion of the Initial Review Meeting/In Absentia Review, the Initial Review Officer will issue a Charge Letter, which will indicate (1) the Referral has been dismissed or (2) the Referral is moved forward with the recommended charges and sanctions. At this point, if the Referral is not dismissed, the Referred Student (for purposes of this Student Code of Conduct) now becomes the Charged Student. The Charge Letter will indicate the choices available to the Charged Student, which are to accept responsibility or to request a Formal Hearing.
4. Formal Hearing:
a. Forums – The Charged Student may elect a Formal Hearing to review the recommended charges found in the Charge Letter, understanding that the Formal Hearing may result in charges being upheld or dismissed and sanctions that are more severe or less severe than the sanctions provided by the Initial Review Officer. The University provides two (2) choices of forum for the Formal Hearing: (a) a Formal Hearing before an Administrative Hearing Officer, which includes a specific waiver of a Formal Hearing before a University Conduct Board or (b) a Formal Hearing before a University Conduct Board, which would then include a specific waiver of a Formal Hearing before an Administrative Hearing Officer. This choice must be made and submitted in writing within five (5) days of the date of the Charge Letter. In the event the Charged Student fails to notify the IRO of the election of either 1) accepting responsibility (form to be provided by OSRR) and agreeing to the terms and sanctions imposed by the Charge Letter or 2) selecting a choice of forum for the Formal Hearing, the recommended charges and sanctions in the Charge Letter will become a Final OSRR Decision. At the discretion of the OSRR, any Formal Hearing may be postponed pending the gathering of additional evidence or the outcome of a related proceeding. In cases of sexual harassment or at the discretion of the University, the University reserves the right to designate that the Formal Hearing be conducted by an Administrative Hearing Officer. The two choices of forum for the Formal Hearing are as follows:
(1) Administrative Hearing Officer Formal Hearing – If the Charged Student elects a Formal Hearing before an Administrative Hearing Officer, OSRR will assign an Administrative Hearing Officer to conduct the Formal Hearing. The Charged Student (and the Complainant in cases of sexual harassment and specific acts of violence as defined in Section 4.24 of this Student Code of Conduct) shall be notified of the person appointed to be the Administrative Hearing Officer.
(2) University Conduct Board Formal Hearing – If the Charged Student elects a Formal Hearing before a University Conduct Board, OSRR will assign a panel where students will make up at least one-half of the membership, except in cases of sexual harassment (See Section (IV)(E)). The Board members will be selected from a bank of faculty/staff and students. Any Board member assigned to hear the case, but who is not present for the presentation of information at the Formal Hearing may not further participate. However, the Charged Student has the right to choose to proceed or to request that the Formal Hearing be rescheduled if the University Conduct Board present does not have at least one-half of the membership made up of students. After the Formal Hearing, the Board will reach its decision in executive session. A simple majority of the quorum is required for decision.
b. Guidelines – When the OSRR receives a timely request (within five (5) days from the date of the Charge Letter) for a Formal Hearing, the Formal Hearing will be scheduled to take place within six (6) weeks from the date of the Charge Letter, except in circumstances which may be identified by the OSRR, which may include holidays or University scheduling conflicts. The OSRR will provide the Charged Student with guidelines and information including the rights of the Charged Student to contact OSRR and schedule a time to review the documents in the file that may be used in the Formal Hearing no less than three (3) days before the Formal Hearing, except in cases of a Provisional Suspension Review or if waived by the Charged Student. The Administrative Hearing Officer and/or University Conduct Board will have five (5) days to reach an outcome. The outcomes of the Formal Hearing held by the Administrative Hearing Officer or the University Conduct Board are recommendations to the Director of OSRR or designee. The Director of OSRR or designee will render a Final OSRR Decision within five (5) days of the receipt of the recommendations. Any differences between the recommendation and the Final OSRR Decision, and the reasons, will be presented to the Charged Student in writing.
5. Appeal Process: The Charged Student, or the Complainant in specific cases as provided in this Student Code of Conduct, may appeal in writing the Final OSRR Decision within five (5) days of the date of the letter describing the decision, except in cases where the Charged Student has accepted responsibility or the Charged Student has failed to notify the OSRR of the choice of forum for the Formal Hearing. The appeal must be written to the Dean of Students or appropriate designee at the member institution or separately accredited institution. If an appeal is granted, the burden of proof rests with the Charged Student or the Complainant to show, by a preponderance of the evidence presented, that the grounds for an appeal have been made. The Dean of Students may adopt, modify, or reject the Final OSRR Decision and/or sanctions from the Final OSRR Decision. The record of the Formal Hearing may be considered on appeal as well as any new information from the Charged Student and/or Complainant that comes to the attention of the Dean of Students. The Dean of Students is authorized to contact any participants in the Formal Hearing for clarification and the Charged Student is entitled to review the record of the Formal Hearing at the University by requesting a review time.
a. Basis of Appeal – Except as required to explain the basis of new information, the Dean shall limit the review of the verbatim record of the Formal Hearing and supporting documents for one or more of the following purposes:
(1) To determine if there were due process errors involving the University’s failure to provide the Charged Student or organization with notice or an opportunity be heard.
(2) To determine whether the sanction(s) imposed was extraordinarily disproportionate for the violation of the Student Code of Conduct, which the Charged Student was found to be responsible.
(3) To consider new information, sufficient to alter a decision or other relevant facts not brought out in the Formal Hearing, because such information and/or facts were not known to the person appealing at the time of the Formal Hearing. Outcomes of criminal or civil cases have no bearing in any aspect of the process, including the appeal.
b. When the appeal is submitted, the Charged Student must state the reason(s) for the appeal and must supply the supporting facts and the recommended solution. This is not a re-hearing of the conduct case. An appeal will not be accepted simply because a student is dissatisfied with the decision. Failure to describe the nature of the information in full detail and/or failure to list and explain at least one (1) of the three (3) bases of acceptable appeals will result in the denial of the appeal.
c. The Dean’s Decision on Appeal Letter will be rendered within ten (10) days of receipt of the appeal, except in extraordinary cases as determined by the Dean of Students. The decision made by the Dean of Students is to be rendered in the Dean’s Decision on Appeal Letter and the Dean’s Decision is considered the Final University Decision. If an appeal is not upheld, the matter shall be considered final and binding upon all involved. If the final appellate decision results in a suspension or expulsion of a Charged Student, the Charged Student will be notified in writing that the decision may be appealed by the student to an external judicial forum as provided in Section (IV)(D) below.
6. Provisional Suspension Review Process: The Provisional Suspension may be imposed by the President or OSRR upon Receipt of Referral. In certain circumstances, the University may immediately impose a Provisional Suspension at any time during the Conduct Process. The President of the University or OSRR or their designee, will have the authority to immediately suspend a student from the University or from participating in official University functions, programs, intercollegiate competitions, and other student activities (“Provisional Suspension”) by issuing a Provisional Suspension Letter. A Provisional Suspension may be imposed to ensure the safety and well-being of members of the University community or preservation of University property; to ensure the physical or emotional safety and well-being of the members of the University community; or when the student’s continued presence or use of privilege at the University is likely to pose an ongoing threat of disruption or interference with the normal operation of the University. Students issued a Provisional Suspension from the University will be provided an Emergency Provisional Suspension Review Meeting with the Director of OSRR, or designee, within five (5) days from the date of the Provisional Suspension Letter. Absent an election by the Referred Student to accept full responsibility of the alleged violation (form to be provided by OSRR), the Director of OSRR, or designee, will conduct the Emergency Provisional Suspension Review Meeting to determine whether to lift the Provisional Suspension and/or to schedule a Formal Hearing before an Administrative Hearing Officer. The decision of the Director of OSRR, or designee, will be communicated to the Referred Student via a Charge Letter. If the Director of OSRR, or designee, decides to lift the Provisional Suspension, the Referred Student may be allowed to resume certain activities on campus which may include the return to classes or university housing, if applicable. If the Referred Student fails to appear for the Emergency Provisional Suspension Review Meeting and fails to accept full responsibility in writing via the OSRR form, the Director of OSRR, or designee, will review the Provisional Suspension in the Referred Student’s absence.
7. Conclusion of Provisional Suspension Review Process – Conclusion of Provisional Suspension Review Process: At the conclusion of the Emergency Provisional Suspension Review Meeting, the Director of OSRR, or designee, will issue a Charge Letter, which will indicate (1) the Referral and the Provisional Suspension have been dismissed and/or lifted; (2) the Provisional Suspension is lifted and the Referral is moved forward with the recommended charges and sanctions; or (3) the Provisional Suspension is continued and the Referral is moved forward with the recommended charges and sanctions. For purposes of this Student Code of Conduct, if the Referral is not dismissed, the Referred Student now becomes the “Charged Student.” If possible, the Charge Letter will include a tentative Formal Hearing date (set no sooner than three (3) days or longer than six (6) weeks from the Emergency Provisional Suspension Review Meeting, unless the Charged Student waives the review period and the Director of OSRR, or designee, is able to schedule the Formal Hearing sooner or more time is needed as determined by the Director of OSRR, or designee, with notice to the Charged Student before the end of the six (6) weeks). At any time in the Provisional Suspension Review Process, a student may elect to accept responsibility (form to be provided by OSRR) and agree to the terms and sanctions imposed by the Charge Letter. If the Charged Student accepts responsibility following the Emergency Provisional Suspension Review Meeting, the Charged Student is electing to waive all rights to a Formal Hearing and is requesting the Director of OSRR, or designee, make a Final OSRR Decision with regard to the substantive charges, and is accepting that determination as a Final OSRR Decision with a waiver of appeal rights except to the severity of the sanction, which the Charged Student may appeal. If the Charged Student does not elect to accept responsibility, a Formal Hearing to review the recommended charges found in the Charge Letter will take place with an Administrative Hearing Officer, unless the Charged Student elects a University Conduct Board.
C. General Principles of Conduct Process:
1. General Principles. Unless otherwise specified:
a. All proceedings will be closed to spectators.
b. No irrelevant information should be discussed or considered in the Formal Hearing.
c. This document provides the process and evidentiary guidelines for this internal University process. Civil and Criminal rules of evidence and procedure do not apply.
d. The Administrative Hearing Officer or Chairperson of the University Conduct Board has the discretion to allocate time allotments for the Formal Hearing and testimony time.
e. At the conclusion of the appeals process, the decision of the Dean of Students or the appropriate designee is a Final University Decision and there are no further internal University appeals.
f. After the Final University Decision, a student may seek judicial review pursuant to Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.190(b)(3) by filing a petition for certiorari review with the appropriate circuit court within thirty (30) days of the Final University Decision. If a person seeks review with the court, a copy of the petition must also be officially served to the University of South Florida Office of the General Counsel at University of South Florida, CGS 301, 4202 E. Fowler Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33620-4301.
g. Charged Students and Complainants may have an advisor of their choice present; however, University employees who have a potential conflict of interest are not to serve. The advisor may be present to speak with and advise the Charged Student/Complainant, but may not speak on behalf of, act as attorney, present the case for, nor otherwise participate directly in the Initial Review or in the Formal Hearing. It is the Charged Student’s/Complainant’s responsibility to make appropriate arrangements for travel, costs, and attendance for the advisor. The Initial Review or the Formal Hearing shall not be delayed due to scheduling conflicts of the chosen advisor.
D. Rights of Charged Students and Complainants:
1. Rights of the Charged Student:
a. Provision of Proof – The provision of proof shall be the duty of the OSRR. The level of proof for a decision shall be “preponderance of the evidence,” that is, from the evidence/information submitted, it is more likely than not that the Charged Student did commit the violation(s) for which the student has been charged, and shall not be the strict criminal law standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
b. Record – A Formal Hearing shall be recorded by audio tape or video. Deliberations shall not be recorded. The record will be the property of the University. A Charged Student and the Charged Student’s Advisor may not record any proceeding.
c. Review of Information – The Charged Student may review the evidence in the possession of the University that will be presented against the Charged Student at the University under the direction of OSRR. The University has the right to request to review any information the Charged Student intends to present at least three (3) days (excluding legal holidays) before the Formal Hearing. Pertinent records, exhibits and written statements may be accepted as information for consideration by the Initial Review Officer or Formal Hearing forum.
d. Presentation of Information – The Charged Student may present evidence on the Charged Student’s own behalf.
e. Question Witnesses (Applicable to Formal Hearing) – The Charged Student may hear and submit questions to be used to question adverse witnesses who testify at the Formal Hearing, except in the certain cases of violent or sexual misconduct, which may require specific protocols to be followed. The Charged Student may submit questions for the Formal Hearing three (3) days before the Formal Hearing to OSRR. The Administrative Hearing Officer or Chairperson of the University Conduct Board will determine if the questions relate to the alleged incident and are appropriate to be presented at the Formal Hearing before presenting them to the witnesses. The Charged Student may hear adverse witnesses who testify at the Formal Hearing and submit questions to be asked of those witnesses. In the event a scheduled witness does not appear, a written statement may be submitted at least three (3) days before the Formal Hearing. However, if the written statement is submitted in less than three (3) days before the Formal Hearing, once notified of the written statement, the Charged Student may request a continuation to permit the three (3) day review of the newly provided evidence or may affirmatively waive the three (3) day review requirement. The Charged Student must be provided an opportunity to respond to the statement.
f. Right to Challenge Impartiality of:
(1) Administrative Hearing Officer – The Charged Student and the Complainant in certain circumstances have the right to challenge the impartiality of the Administrative Hearing Officer in writing to OSRR within three (3) days of notification (or in cases of an emergency nature within twenty-four (24) hours of the scheduled Formal Hearing). An Administrative Hearing Officer whose impartiality is challenged by reasonable rationale will be excused. Indiscriminate impartiality challenges shall entitle the OSRR to proceed without regard to the challenge. If an Administrative Hearing Officer is excused, at the discretion of the OSRR, a new Administrative Hearing Officer will be assigned if time permits. Otherwise, the Formal Hearing will be rescheduled. No students may contact, directly or indirectly, any Administrative Hearing Officer regarding this process before, during, or after the Formal Hearing and a violation of this restriction may be considered a violation of this Student Code of Conduct.
(2) University Conduct Board Member – The Charged Student and the Complainant in certain circumstances have the right to challenge the impartiality of any Board member in writing to OSRR within three (3) days of notification (or in cases of an emergency nature within twenty-four (24) hours of the scheduled Formal Hearing). A Board member whose impartiality is challenged by reasonable rationale will be excused. Indiscriminate impartiality challenges shall entitle the panel to proceed without regard to the challenge. If a Board member is excused, at the discretion of the OSRR, the Formal Hearing will continue as scheduled, provided there is at least one student and one faculty/staff member on the panel. No students may contact, directly or indirectly, any Board member regarding this process before, during, or after the Formal Hearing and a violation of this restriction may be considered a violation of this Student Code of Conduct.
g. Response to Presented Information – The Charged Student shall not be forced to present testimony or respond to questions.
h. Decision Based on Presented Information – Decisions of the University Conduct Board or Administrative Hearing Officer shall be based solely on the evidence presented, including any file referencing prior misconduct or meetings with the Charged Student in the custody of the OSRR.
i. Decision in Writing – Decisions of the University Conduct Board or Administrative Hearing Officer, including findings of fact and a determination of sanction, if any, shall be presented to the Charged Student in writing within ten (10) days following the Hearing in a Hearing Decision Letter.
j. Enrollment Status – The Charged Student’s enrollment status will remain unchanged pending the Final OSRR decision, except in cases of Provisional Suspension. The Final OSRR Decision will reflect how the enrollment status of the Charged Student will be treated between the Final OSRR Decision and a possible appeal to the Dean and the Dean’s Decision. A Charged Student shall remain eligible to attend classes and University activities pending the Final OSRR Decision, which shall indicate if recommended sanctions are to be imposed immediately (in case of suspension or expulsion or to protect the health or safety of the University) or deferred until after the appeal is concluded. In cases where the President or President’s designee determines that the health, safety, or welfare of the Charged Student or the University community is involved, a Charged Student’s privileges within the University, including the ability to attend classes or engage in University activities, may be suspended on an interim basis. If a Charged Student’s privileges are temporarily revoked as described in this paragraph, but the Charged Student is subsequently found not responsible for the violation, the University must:
(1) Correct any record of the change in enrollment status in the Charged Student’s permanent records and reports in a manner compliant with state and federal laws; and
(2) Refund to the Charged Student: a pro rata portion of any charges for tuition and out-of-state fees, as appropriate, if the temporary revocation or suspension of the Charged Student’s ability to attend classes lasts for more than ten (10) days.
k. Failure to Appear – If a Charged Student fails to appear for any Hearing, the matter may be resolved in the Charged Student’s absence.
2. Rights of the Complainant:
a. Formal Hearing Questions – The Complainant shall have the right to submit a list of questions to OSRR for use during the Formal Hearing. The OSRR shall ask the Charged Student the questions provided the OSRR determines the questions relate to the alleged incident and are appropriate to be presented at the Formal Hearing.
E. Additional Rights of Charged Students and Complainants in Cases of Alleged
Violent Conduct and Sexual Harassment: In cases of sexual harassment (as defined in Section 4.14 of this Student Code of Conduct) and specific acts of violence (as defined in Section 4.24 of this Student Code of Conduct), the Charged Student and the Complainant, shall be notified of the persons selected to hear the case during the Formal Hearing. Additionally:
1. Violent Conduct Cases: In cases of alleged violent conduct, injurious behavior, and in specific cases of sexual harassment, the following additional rights shall be provided to the Complainant:
a. The Complainant shall be notified of the available assistance within the University.
b. The Complainant shall be notified of additional offices that may be contacted to request a change in residence hall, academic assignments, reassignments, no contact orders, counseling or other interim accommodations that may be available to address specific immediate concerns.
c. The Complainant shall have the right to submit an impact statement to the OSRR for use during the sanctioning portion of the conduct process.
d. The Complainant shall have the right to be present during all fact-gathering aspects of the Formal Hearing, notwithstanding the fact that the Complainant is to be called as a witness. In extraordinary cases, alternate arrangements may be made for the Complainant to participate in the Formal Hearing without being present in the same room.
e. Upon written request from the Complainant, the OSRR will inform the Complainant in writing of the outcome of the Formal Hearing within ten (10) days from the conclusion of the Formal Hearing/appeal process (Final University Decision) unless extraordinary circumstances exist. In the event the Complainant is deceased as a result of the crime of offense, the information shall be provided, upon request, to the next of kin of the alleged Complainant.
2. Sexual Harassment Cases: In cases of sexual harassment (as defined in Section 4.14 of this Student Code of Conduct and including sexual misconduct, gender based discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence and stalking), the Complainant and the Charged Student’s rights include the following additional guidelines:
a. Informational Conference – The Charged Student and the Complainant may each participate individually in a voluntary Informational Conference. The purpose of the Informational Conference is to provide an opportunity for representatives of the University to review any allegations, charge(s), and possible sanctions, and explain both the Title IX and conduct processes and any alternate forms of dispute resolution that may be available to the Charged Student and the Complainant.
b. Informational Conference Materials – The Complainant shall be provided by OSRR or the Title IX Office, information regarding efforts to address sexual harassment on campus, the alternative forms of reporting available and the name and address of the University Title IX Officer and resources available.
c. Formal Hearing Forums – If a Formal Hearing before a University Conduct Board is requested by the Charged Student and no objection is raised by the Complainant, the University may provide such Formal Hearing. If the Complainant requests a Formal Hearing without student representation, the forum will be an Administrative Hearing Officer Formal Hearing.
d. Participation in Formal Hearing – If the matter is referred as a conduct violation and the matter moves to a Formal Hearing, the Complainant may also be permitted to participate in the Formal Hearing to the extent allowed by state and federal privacy laws. Such participation may include the presence of an adviser, the ability to present information and witnesses in the Formal Hearing, and the right to avoid self-incrimination.
e. Evidence at the Formal Hearing – The Complainant, Charged Student or other individuals providing evidence for the Formal Hearing shall be provided an opportunity to provide information or present evidence during the Formal Hearing to be considered in determinations and sanctions in a manner that avoids direct contact with the other individuals participating in the Hearing. Depending on the type of Formal Hearing, this may be a written statement, a verbal representation or active participation in a Formal Hearing.
f. Interim Accommodations – The Complainant may have interim immediate accommodations as noted in Section (IV)(E)(1)(b) above as deemed appropriate.
g. Impact Statement – In the event the Charged Student accepts responsibility or is found responsible, any Impact Statement provided by the Complainant will be considered by the Administrative Hearing Officer and/or University Conduct Board members in recommending or issuing the disciplinary sanction(s). While the Impact Statement is not binding, the impact described in the statement together with the totality of the circumstances including the Charged Student’s conduct record, should be considered by the University official(s) involved in recommending or determining the appropriate sanction(s).
h. Notice to the Complainant and Right of Complainant to Appeal – The Complainant shall be notified in writing of the outcome of the Formal Hearing within ten (10) days (unless there are extraordinary circumstances that delay notice) of the determination, and the Complainant may appeal the decision of the Formal Hearing through the established appeal process in this Student Code of Conduct. The Complainant shall be notified of any subsequent changes to the Final University Decision.
i. Right to Elect a Review or Appeal of Final University Decision – In sexual harassment cases the Complainant may have the right to elect a review or appeal of the Final University Decision; and the appeal process granted to the Charged Student as set forth in the Appeal Process Section (IV)(B)(5) of this Student Code of Conduct will be provided to the Complainant at that time.
F. Sanctions: Any of the following sanctions may be imposed on a student or a student organization:
1. Warning Letter: An official notice that states that if there is a repeated violation of University policy, rules or regulations, the student can expect additional conduct sanctions.
2. Restrictions: Conditions imposed on a student that would specifically dictate and limit future presence on campus and participation in University activities. The restrictions involved will be clearly identified and may include but are not limited to a University order forbidding the Charged Student from all contact with the Complainant. Restrictions may also apply to denial of operating a motorized vehicle (including golf carts) on campus, access and use of University services, and presence in certain buildings or locations on campus.
3. Restitution: A payment for injury or damage.
4. Financial Aid Impacts: A restriction on or revocation of financial aid where appropriate pursuant to law or NCAA policy.
5. Alcohol and/or Substance Use Educational Sanctions: These educational sanctions may be comprised of online educational modules, in person assessments and follow-up meetings, or external assessments.
6. Other Appropriate Sanctions: Such as mandated community service, fines, educational programs (payment of associated fees), and written assignments.
7. Conduct Probation: An official sanction that places the student’s enrollment dependent upon the maintenance of satisfactory citizenship during the period of probation. When probation is imposed as a sanction, the student should be advised of the consequences of violation of probation. Any student placed on conduct probation may be restricted from participating in certain University activities as specified by the Director of OSRR or designee or as regulated by other University departments.
8. Housing Cancellation: The immediate cancellation of a Charged Student’s housing contract. Upon the termination of the contract, the Charged Student is restricted from all USF residential facilities (dining halls are not included in this restriction). The Charged Student will be responsible for any fees associated with the cancellation of the housing contract.
9. Deferred Housing Cancellation: A cancellation of a student’s housing contract imposed at a definite future date or time. Upon the termination of the contract, the Charged Student is restricted from all USF residential facilities (dining halls are not included in this restriction). The Charged Student will be responsible for any fees associated with the cancellation of the housing contract.
10. Suspension: Termination of a student’s privilege to attend the University for a specified period of time. This may include a restrictive order that would exclude the person from campus. In cases where the student resides on campus, the student will be given reasonable time to vacate the residence halls (i.e. 24 to 48 hours).
11. Deferred Suspension: Suspension imposed at a definite future date or time.
12. Expulsion: Permanent termination of a student’s privilege to attend the University. This may include a restrictive order that would exclude the person from campus. In cases where the student resides on campus, the student will be given reasonable time to vacate the residence halls (i.e. 24 to 48 hours).
G. Parental Notification:
1. The University is committed to the success of its students both inside and outside of the classroom. Therefore, it is the University’s goal to maximize students’ learning and development, and promote student health, safety and welfare. In this regard, the University has implemented a Parental Notification process. Parental Notification permits the University the right to inform parents or guardians when their dependent student, under the age of 21, has been found in violation of Policy 30-023 Alcohol Policy and/or Policy 0-610 Drug-Free Workplace.
2. In non-emergency situations, parents of dependent students, under the age of 21, may be notified in writing, at the discretion of the OSRR. However, in emergency situations, parents may be notified by an immediate phone call from a University Official. These guidelines do not preclude Parental Notification for other University policy violations that may endanger the health, safety and wellbeing of a student or other individuals in the University community. In addition, Parental Notification may occur in health and safety emergencies, regardless of the student’s age or dependent status.
3. Students, whose parents are to be notified under these guidelines, will be informed before such notification occurs and given an opportunity to initiate contact with their parents if and when possible.
H. Discipline Records and Retention Policy: The following applies to individual student disciplinary records.
1. Maintenance of Records:
a. Student discipline records are maintained in the OSRR.
b. All discipline records in all formats (paper, computer, audio, etc.) will be destroyed in accordance with this current Discipline Records and Retention policy/Section (IV)(H).
c. OSRR maintains all student discipline records in accordance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). OSRR will abide by all laws requiring privacy with regard to the student conduct process. This privacy extends to all OSRR staff, including the University Conduct Board and individual Initial Review Officers. In cases involving alleged violent misconduct or injurious behavior, OSRR will inform the Complainant, whenever appropriate, of the outcome of the Hearing.
d. A student may choose to sign a release form granting OSRR staff permission to discuss information related to the student’s disciplinary file with any individual that the student designates. This form is available in the OSRR. Although this form may provide access to information to a third party, the student remains the primary responsible party for compliance. As the audio records of a Formal Hearing may include multiple student names and/or Complainant information, the audio file may need to be transferred and redacted by the University with all related costs the responsibility of the student.
e. Any educational institution requesting conduct information about a current or former University student is required to submit the request in writing. If a non- educational agency is requesting information, those requests must include the signature of the student granting the release of information related to the student’s disciplinary record.
2. Destruction of Records:
a. Records resulting in a discipline sanction of expulsion or suspension from the University will be permanently maintained in the OSRR.
b. All other discipline records are maintained for one (1) year from graduation. In the event that a student matriculates, but does not graduate, the OSRR will retain the record for five (5) years from the last date of attendance.
c. No personally identifiable record(s) will be kept after a record has been designated for destruction. Statistical data will be maintained but all information that would identify an individual is removed.
d. All paper records will be destroyed by shredding or other similar process. Computer files will be modified in a manner so that only statistical data that cannot identify an individual is kept. Non-paper information (i.e. audio recordings) will be destroyed in a manner that will ensure that the information cannot be traced to any individual or any discipline case.
I. Member Institutions: The foregoing applies to all three member institutions of the University; however, non-substantive procedural modifications to reflect the particular circumstances of each member institution are permitted. Information concerning these procedures is available through the student affairs office at those member institutions. For more information regarding the procedures of each member institution, please refer to the following websites:
- USF (Tampa): http://www.sa.usf.edu/srr/page.asp?id=69
- USFSP: http://www.usfsp.edu/dos/sc/
- USFSM: http://catalog.usfsm.edu/student-engagement/student-rights-and-responsibilities/
J. Review of Student Code of Conduct: A student conduct advisory group, a committee consisting of faculty/staff and students appointed by the Vice President for Student Affairs and Student Success, or designee, shall periodically evaluate this Student Code of Conduct.
Authority: Art. IX, Sec. 7, Fla. Constitution. Fla. Board of Governors Regulations 1.001, 6.0105; Sections 1006.50, 60, 61, 62, 63, Florida Statutes.
History–New 9-23-85, Formerly 6C4-6.021, Amended 5-27-92, 7-26-92, 12-2-92, 12-29-94, 4-11-99, 9-27-05, Formerly 6C4-6.0021 F.A.C., Amended 6-5-08, 6-25-09, 9-22-11, 12-02-13 (technical), 1-6-14 (technical), 6-23-14 (technical), 5-14 15 (technical), 8-19-16 (technical)
Student Records Policy
- Introduction. The policies and procedures outlined in this Regulation are designed to implement the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act [“FERPA,” 20 U. S. C. s.1232g] and Sections 1002.225 and 1006.52, Florida Statutes pursuant to which the University of South Florida System (USF System) is obligated to inform students and parents of their rights to review and inspect education records, to challenge and seek to amend education records, to control disclosure of education records, and to complain to the FERPA Office (violations of FERPA) or to the appropriate court for violations of privacy if applicable. The USF System has placed the responsibility for administration of this Regulation with its FERPA Coordinator who is the University Registrar.
- Definitions. The following definitions of terms apply to the construction of this Regulation:
- Student: An individual who is registered for an on-or-off campus (including on-line courses) program leading to the award of academic credit or degree from USF System institutions. “Student” does not include individuals participating in the Common Learning Network, Language Institute, Gifted programs, Speech and Hearing Clinics, non-credit Continuing Education programs or USF Health degree students who are not attending as an enrollee.
- Education Records: Those records which are maintained by the USF System and employees/agents of USF System institutions which contain information directly related to a student. “Record,” as used herein, includes any information or data recorded in any medium, including but not limited to handwriting, print, digital/electronic images, magnetic tapes and disks, film, microfilm, and microfiche. “Agents,” as used herein, means any individual who, pursuant to express or implied authorization, represents and acts for the USF System. The following types of records are expressly exempt from the definition of education records:
- Sole Possession Records: Personal record of USF System employees/agents which meets the following test:
- It was created by the USF System employee/agent as a personal memory aid; and
- It is in the sole possession of the USF System employee/agent who created it; and
- The information contained in it has never been revealed or accessible to any other person, including the student, except the USF System employee’s/agent’s “temporary substitute.” “Temporary substitute,” as used herein, means an individual who performs on a temporary basis the duties of the USF System employee/agent.
- Employment Records: Records which are used only in relation to an individual’s employment by the USF System. However, the following are education records rather than employment records:
- Records relating to a student’s employment by the USF System if the position in which the student is employed depends on his/her status as a student.
- Records relating to a student’s employment by the USF System if the student receives a grade or credit based on his/her performance as an employee.
- Pre-attendance records-Records relating to an individual’s application for admission to the USF System prior to his/her actual attendance as an enrolled student in the program for which application was made. This includes records relating to an application for admission to one of the colleges within the USF System prior to the individual’s actual attendance as an enrolled student in that college. (Although not considered education records, Section 1006.52, Florida Statutes does define Applicant Records and provides that such records are confidential and exempt from Sections 119.07(1), Florida Statutes and 24(a), Art. I, Fla. Constitution.
- Alumni Records: Records created and maintained on an individual as an alumnus/alumna of the USF System.
- Law Enforcement Records: Records created and maintained by the University Police which are used solely for law enforcement purposes, are maintained apart from education records, and are not disclosed to individuals other than law enforcement officials of the same jurisdiction; provided that, in addition, no member of the University Police shall have access to education records except where this Regulation authorizes release without the student’s prior written consent.
- Health records: Records of the University’s Student Health Services and Counseling Center which are used only for the provision of medical, psychiatric, or psychological treatment and which are kept separate from education records.
- Sole Possession Records: Personal record of USF System employees/agents which meets the following test:
- Personal Identifier: Any data or information that relates a record to an individual. This includes the individual’s name, the name of the individual’s parents, or other family members, the individual’s address, the individual’s social security number or official University ID and any other number or symbol which identifies the individual, a list of the individual’s personal characteristics, or any other information which would make the individual’s identity known and can be used to label a record as the individual’s record as determined by the USF System
- Annual Notification.
- Each USF System campus/institution will publish annually in the graduate and undergraduate catalogs a notice of student rights under FERPA and Sections 1002.225 and 1006.52, Florida Statutes.
- The notice will include, but not be limited to, the following:
- The right of the student to inspect and review his/her education records.
- The intent of the USF System to limit the disclosure of information contained in a student’s education records to the following circumstances:
- With the student’s prior written consent; or
- As an item of directory information which the student has not refused to permit the USF System to disclose; or,
- Under the FERPA and Florida Statutes provisions which allow the USF System to disclose information without the student’s prior written consent.
- The right of a student to request the USF System to amend any part of his/her education record which he/she believes to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of his/her privacy or other rights; and, should the student’s request be denied, the right of the student to a hearing to present evidence that the record is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of his/her privacy or other rights.
- The right to report violations of FERPA to the Family Policy Compliance Office of the U.S. Department of Education, and to bring an action in Florida Circuit Court for violations of Section 1002.225, Florida Statutes.
- The locations where copies of this Regulation are available to students.
- Locations of Student Records. Student confidential information may be maintained throughout the USF System and there is no prerequisite for information to be maintained in aspecific place for it to be considered a student record. However, as a general practice records are maintained in the following areas:(In the event the campus/institution does not have a separate office for each function as indicated, contact the campus/institution Registrar for assistance in determining the specific record custodian.) Admission records and cumulative academic records are located in the University document management system.
- Admission records are maintained until scanned at each campus/institution within the USF System. The custodians for such records are the Directors of Admissions.
- Cumulative academic records are located in the Office of the Registrar or equivalent office at each campus/institution within the USF System. The custodian for such records is the University Registrar or equivalent individual at each USF System institution.
- Medical records are located within the Student Health Services offices at each campus/institution within the USF System and the custodian for such records is the Director, Student Health Services.
- Psychological/Psychiatric counseling records are located in the Counseling Center at each campus/institution within the USF System and the custodian for such records is the Director, Counseling Center.
- Student employment records are located in the Division of Human Resources at each campus/institution within the USF System. The custodian for such records is the Director, Division of Human Resources.
- Financial aid records are located in the University document management system. Paper records are maintained until scanned at each campus/institution; electronic records are maintained indefinitely in the University document management system. The custodian for such records is the Director, University Scholarships & Financial Aid Services, SVC 1102, 4202 Fowler Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33620.
- Financial records are located in the Division of Finance and Accounting at each campus/institution within the USF System. Electronic records are maintained in the document management system.
- Cooperative education and placement records are located in the Career Resource Center at each campus/institution within the USF System and the custodian for such records is the Director, Career Development Services.
- College records are located in the college dean’s office and/or departmental offices of each college or department and in the faculty offices at each college or department and the custodian for such records is the appropriate dean, department chairperson, professor, instructor or lecturer.
- Disciplinary records are located in the Office of Student Affairs at each campus/institution within the USF System and the custodian for such records is the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students.
- Continuing Education records are located in the Office of the Registrar at each campus/institution within the USF System and the custodian for such records is the University Registrar.
- All records relating to students enrolled in the University’s College of Medicine are located in the appropriate College of Medicine office, and the custodian for such records is the Office of Student Affairs, College of Medicine, University of South Florida, MDC 54, 12901 Bruce B. Downs, Tampa, Florida 33612.
- Records relating to students previously enrolled in the New College program of the University of South Florida are now located at New College of Florida, Office of Records & Registration, 5800 Bay Shore Road, PMD-115, Sarasota, Florida 34243-2109.
- Occasional records, student education records not included in the types or systems listed above, such as copies of correspondence in offices not listed, etc., the FERPA Coordinator will collect such records, direct the student to their location, or otherwise make them available for inspection and review.
- Procedure to Inspect Education Records.
- Students who wish to inspect and review their education records should submit a written request to the appropriate record custodian or to the FERPA Coordinator. The request should identify as accurately as possible the specific records the student wishes to inspect and review. It may identify records according to the types listed in subsection (4) of this Regulation, as records located at specific places, or as records under the custodianship of specific USF System employees/agents identified by title. Records listed in this Regulation as “occasional records” should be identified in terms which will make it possible for the FERPA Coordinator to locate them and make them available for the student to inspect and review.
- The FERPA Coordinator or the record custodian shall either permit the student to immediately inspect and review his/her education records or advise the student when and where the records will be available for inspection and review. Access to education records requested in compliance with this Regulation shall be granted within a reasonable period of time, but in no case more than thirty (30) calendar days after the FERPA Coordinator or the record custodian receives the student’s written request. The FERPA Coordinator or the record custodian or his/her designee shall have the right to be present while the student inspects and reviews the records. Upon reasonable request, USF System institutions shall furnish the student with an explanation or interpretation of his/her record.
- Upon reasonable request and demonstration to the FERPA Coordinator that the failure to provide the student with copies of the requested education records will effectively deny the student the right to inspect and review such records, USF System institutions will arrange for the student to obtain copies of such records. In the event that the student has an unpaid financial obligation to a USF System institution, he/she shall not be entitled to transcripts or copies of education records.
- When records contain personally identifiable information about more than one student, a student may inspect only that information which relates to him/her.
- The USF System reserves the right to refuse to permit a student to inspect and review the following education records:
- The financial records of the parents of the student or any information contained therein.
- Statements and letters of recommendation prepared by University officials or submitted with the student’s application for admission which were placed in the student’s records before January 1, 1975 or for which the student has waived his/her right of access in writing; provided, however, that if such statements and letters of recommendation have been used for any purpose other than that for which they were originally prepared, the student may inspect and review them.
- Those records which are excluded from the definition of “education records” under this Regulation.
- Copies of Education Records.Generally, students may review records at the time and place designated by the USF System. Providing copies of Education Records is a discretionary decision on the part of the USF System except as provided below. If copies are to be provided the following fees may be charged:
- Fees. The Institutions within the USF System will charge the following fees for copies of education records:
- Transcripts: Official transcripts-$10.00 (or as set by current USF System Policy or Regulation.) The USF College of Medicine does not charge a fee for this service. The USF System reserves the right to deny transcripts or copies of records not required by FERPA in any of the following situations:a. The student has an unpaid financial obligation to the USF System.b. There is an unresolved disciplinary action against the student.c. There is an unresolved litigation between the student and the USF System.
- Copies of general education records (not certified or official transcripts):
- Fees: The fee charged for FERPA-required copies of education records or those records provided at the discretion of the USF System shall be the amount permitted by statute. Extensive search for records may involve additional costs for search and retrieval. When administrative costs of collecting fees exceed the copying amount, the FERPA Coordinator shall be authorized to waive or charge such fees.
- Required Copies: Copies of education records are required by FERPA under the following circumstances:
- Failure to provide such copies would effectively deny the student the right to inspect and review his/her records; or
- The USF System has disclosed information from the student’s education records under authority of the student’s prior written consent and the student requests a copy of the information disclosed; or
- The student requests copies of records the USF System has disclosed to other schools where the student seeks or intends to enroll.
- Fees. The Institutions within the USF System will charge the following fees for copies of education records:
- Directory Information.
- Designation of directory information. The USF System hereby designates the following described personally identifiable information contained in a student’s education record as “directory information” in order that the USF System may, at its discretion, disclose the information without a student’s further prior written consent:
- The student’s name.
- The student’s local and permanent addresses.
- The student’s local and permanent telephone listing.
- Date and Place of Birth.
- The student’s classification and major field of study.
- The student’s participation in officially recognized activities and sports.
- The weight and height of members of athletic teams.
- The student’s dates of attendance, part-time or full-time status, degrees and awards received, and most recent previous educational agency or institution attended.
- The student’s photographic image.
- Other similar information as identified by the USF System as appropriate and defined in the notice described in (b) below.
- Publication of Directory Including Student Directory Information: The USF System proposes to publish for each academic year a University Directory which will contain certain items of directory information with respect to students who are registered during the Fall Semester of such academic year. A student may request to be excluded from this published University Directory by completing the request for privacy as described below.
- Release of Specific Directory Information: The USF System may release directory information upon specific request unless a student completes the Request for Privacy as set forth below.
- Request for Privacy-General Directory Information: Students have the right to request Privacy to prevent the disclosure of “directory information, “either in the Directory or upon request. The USF System will publish in the Schedule of Classes or Graduate and Undergraduate Catalogs for each academic term the above list, or a revised list, of the items of information it proposes to designate as “directory information.” Students must notify the FERPA Coordinator in writing if they refuse to permit the University to:1. Include their information in a published student directory.2. Release directory information about themselves to any third party.Such notification must be received by the FERPA Coordinator no later than the end of the second week of classes of the academic term or the student will be deemed to have waived his/her right of refusal until the next academic term. When the FERPA Coordinator receives a student’s refusal to permit the University to disclose “directory information” about that student, the FERPA Coordinator will notify the appropriate records custodians of the student’s action. The records custodians will not make any further disclosures of directory information about that student without the student’s prior written consent except to the extent authorized by FERPA and Florida Statutes. Students registering during the Fall Semester will receive notification of their “privacy” rights under FERPA. Students must either notify the FERPA Coordinator in writing or update their individual privacy status at https://www.registrar.usf.edu/privacy/ to prevent disclosure or publication of directory information in the University Directory; such notification must be received by the FERPA Coordinator no later than the end of the second week of classes of the Fall Semester or the student will be deemed to have waived his/her right of refusal with respect to the University Directory until Semester One of the next academic year. The USF System will not release information contained in a student’s education records, except directory information, to any third parties except its own officials, unless those third parties agree that they will not re-disclose the information without the student’s prior written consent. In addition, section (8)(g) below sets forth the terms of the FERPA Waiver Request Form which authorizes the release of non-directory information to designated individuals.
- Requests for directory information. All requests for directory information about students should be referred to the FERPA Coordinator.
- Designation of directory information. The USF System hereby designates the following described personally identifiable information contained in a student’s education record as “directory information” in order that the USF System may, at its discretion, disclose the information without a student’s further prior written consent:
- Use of Education Records. All custodians of a student’s education records and other University employees/agents will follow a strict policy that information contained in a student’s education record is confidential and may not be disclosed to third parties without the student’s prior written consent except as otherwise provided in this section.
- University officials shall have access to student education records for legitimate educational purposes.
- “University official,” as used herein, means:
- A person currently serving as a member of the Florida Board of Governors or USF Board of Trustees.
- A person under contract to the Florida Board of Governors/USF Board of Trustees/USF System or the Florida Department of Education in any faculty or staff position in the USF System.
- A person employed by the USF Board of Trustees as a temporary substitute for a staff member or faculty member in the USF System for the period of his/her performance as a substitute.
- A person employed by the USF Board of Trustees or under contract to the USF Board of Trustees to perform a special administrative task for the USF System. Such persons may be employed as secretaries, clerks, attorneys, auditors, and consultants. They shall be considered to be University officials for the period of their performance as an employee or contractor.
- A person who is designated by a University official by way of written agreement that incorporates all FERPA and state law privacy obligations and who is performing a specific function considered a function that serves a legitimate educational interest on behalf of the University.
- “Legitimate educational purpose,” as used herein, means a University official’s need to know in order to:
- Perform an administrative task outlined in the official’s position description or contract; or
- Perform a supervisory or instructional task directly related to the student’s education; or
- Perform a service or benefit for the student such as health care, counseling, student job placement, or student financial aid.
- “University official,” as used herein, means:
- Under the following circumstances, University officials may make disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records without the student’s consent:
- To another college or university where the student seeks or intends to enroll.
- To certain federal and state officials who require information in order to audit or enforce legal conditions related to USF System programs supported by federal or state funds.
- To parties who provide or may provide financial aid to the student in order to:
- Establish the student’s eligibility for the financial aid; or
- Determine the amount of financial aid; or
- Establish the conditions for the receipt of the financial aid; or
- Enforce the terms of the agreement between the provider and the receiver of the financial aid.
- To state or local officials in compliance with state law adopted prior to November 19, 1974.
- To an individual or organization under written agreement or contract with the University of South Florida System, USF Board of Trustees, or the Florida Board of Governors for the purpose of conducting a study on the USF System’s behalf for the development of tests, the administration of student aid, or the improvement of instruction.
- To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions.
- To parents of a student if the parents claim the student as a dependent under the Internal Revenue Code of 1954. The USF System will exercise this option only on the condition that evidence of such dependency is furnished to the FERPA Coordinator by the parents executing an Affidavit of Dependency.
- To comply with a lawfully issued subpoena or judicial order of a court of competent jurisdiction. The USF System will make a reasonable effort to notify the student before it makes a disclosure under this provision.
- The result of a disciplinary proceeding may be released to the victim of the student’s crime of violence.
- All requests for disclosure under the nine (9) circumstances listed above, where the USF System may disclose personally identifiable information without the student’s prior consent to third parties other than its own officials, will be referred to the FERPA Coordinator or appropriate records custodian.
- University officials are authorized to make necessary disclosures from student education records, without the student’s prior consent in a health or safety emergency if the University official deems:
- The disclosure to be warranted by the seriousness of the threat to the health or safety of the student or other persons; and
- The information disclosed is necessary and needed to meet the emergency; and
- The persons to whom the information is disclosed are qualified and in a position to deal with the emergency; and
- Time is an important and limiting factor in dealing with the emergency.
- University officials may not disclose personally identifiable information contained in a student’s education record, except directory information or under the circumstances listed above, except with the student’s prior written consent. The written consent must include the following:
- A specification of the information the student consents to be disclosed; and
- The person or organization or the class of persons or organizations to whom the disclosure may be made; and
- The date of the consent.
- The student may obtain a copy of any records the USF System discloses pursuant to the student’s prior written consent.
- The USF System will not release information contained in a student’s education records, except directory information, to any third parties except its own officials, unless those third parties agree that they will not re-disclose the information without the student’s prior written consent.
- The USF System may release any and all information to individuals known and designated by the student to receive his/her information upon the student duly executing a FERPA Waiver Request Form authorizing the USF System to disclose their information to those whom the student has authorized. The FERPA Waiver will remain in effect while the student is actively enrolled in the USF System or until such authorization is revoked.
- University officials shall have access to student education records for legitimate educational purposes.
- Records of Requests for Access and Disclosures Made from Education Records.
- All requests for disclosures of information contained in a student’s education record or for access to the record made by persons other than University officials or the student or those requests accompanied by the student’s prior written consent will be submitted to the FERPA Coordinator or appropriate records custodian. The FERPA Coordinator or appropriate records custodian will approve or disapprove all such requests for access and disclosures and, except for requests for directory information, he/she will maintain a record of these actions.
- This record of requests/disclosures shall include the following information:
- The name of the person or agency that made the request.
- The interest the person or agency had in the information.
- The date the person or agency made the request.
- Whether the request was granted and, if it was, the date access was permitted or the disclosure was made.
- The University will maintain this record of requests/disclosures as long as it maintains the student’s education record.
- Procedures to Request Amendment of and Challenge Education Records.
- Students have the right to, in accordance with this Regulation, request amendment of and challenge the content of their education records.
- The term “incorrect” is used herein to describe a record that is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the privacy or other rights of students. A record is not “incorrect,” for purposes of this Regulation, where the requestor wishes to challenge the evaluation reflected by the grade an instructor assigns for a course.
- The term “requestor” is used herein to describe a student or former student who is requesting the University to amend a record.
- Students who believe that their education records contain information which is incorrect should informally discuss the problem with the record custodian. If the record custodian finds the information is incorrect because of an obvious error, and it is a simple matter to amend it to the satisfaction of the requestor, the record custodian may make the amendment.
- If the record custodian cannot amend the record to the requestor’s satisfaction or if the record does not appear to be obviously incorrect, the record custodian will:
- Provide the requestor a copy of the questioned record at no cost; and
- Ask the requestor to initiate and provide the record custodian a written request for the amendment; such written request must identify the information which the requestor believes is incorrect, must state why such information is incorrect, and must be dated and signed by the requestor.
- The record custodian will send the request, together with a written explanation of his/her refusal to amend the record to the requestor’s satisfaction, to the FERPA Coordinator. The FERPA Coordinator will examine the request, discuss it with appropriate USF System officials, including the person who initiated the record, the USF System General Counsel, and other persons who might have an interest in the questioned record. At the conclusion of this investigation, the FERPA Coordinator will summarize his/her findings, make a recommendation for USF System’s action, and deliver the request, the record custodian’s written explanation, his/her summary of findings, and his/her recommendation to the USF System President (President).
- The President will instruct the FERPA Coordinator whether the record should or should not be amended in accordance with the request. If the President’s decision is to amend the record, the FERPA Coordinator will advise the record custodian to make the amendment. The record custodian will advise the requestor in writing when he/she has amended the record and invite the requestor to inspect the record.
- If the President’s decision is that the record is correct and should not be amended, the FERPA Coordinator will prepare and send the requestor a letter stating the decision. Parents and eligible students who need assistance or who wish to file a complaint under FERPA or the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA) should do so in writing to the Family Policy Compliance Office, sending pertinent information through the mail, concerning any allegations to the following address: Family Policy Compliance Office; U.S. Department of Education; 400 Maryland Avenue, SW; Washington, D.C. 20202-5920; Phone: 1-800-USA-LEARN (1-800-872-5327).
- In the event the education records are not amended to the requestor’s satisfaction, the requestor shall have the right to place with the education records a written statement explaining, commenting upon, or disagreeing with information contained in the education records. This statement shall be maintained as part of the student’s education record for as long as the USF System maintains the questioned part of the record. Whenever the questioned part of the record is disclosed, the student’s written statement shall also be disclosed.
- Right of Waiver of Access.The USF System may request a waiver of access to evaluations and letters of recommendation related to admissions, employment applications and receipt of honors. While such a waiver may be requested, requests for waivers do not constitute a pre-condition for admission, financial aid, or any services or benefits. Upon request, students who have waived access to such items can receive a listing of all individuals providing confidential recommendations or evaluations.
Authority: Art. IX, Sec. 7, Fla. Constitution; Fla. Board of Governors Regulation 1.001; 1002.225, 1006.52 FS.
History – New (BOT approval) 4-19-83, Formerly 6C4-2.021, F.A.C., Amended 3-15-92, 1-7-93, Formerly 6C4-2.0021, F.A.C., Amended 10-3-12 (Technical), Amended 11-10-15 (Technical).
Testing and Final Examinations
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
Examinations in academic subjects are, for most courses, an integral part of the learning process and one part of a procedure for evaluating student performance and determining grades. The University of South Florida System (USF System) requires certain standards for the examination process in order to protect the academic integrity of courses and the best interests of both the student and instructor. Although this policy primarily addresses examinations for undergraduate courses, graduate courses with final exams during the examination week should follow the schedule for exams that is provided with the course schedule for that academic term.
II. APPLICABILITY & AUTHORITY
This Policy does not apply to the USF Health Colleges.
III. STATEMENT OF POLICY
A. Testing in General
In each academic course the student is expected to undergo a meaningful testing and evaluation that will reveal the student’s intellectual growth in the subject matter covered or otherwise reflect the achievement of the course objectives.
The instructor has the responsibility of maintaining a fair and impartial testing and examination procedure, has the right to define and structure the testing process, and shall not be restricted as to form, style, or content of the examination. It is the policy of the USF System that all students facing an examination (of any type) shall have equal notice of said examination. The USF System regards the routine use of all or part of the same formal examination for successive academic terms as unsound policy except when used with adequate safeguards such as a random selection of questions from a large pool.
B. Designated Reading Days
Effective, Spring 2016, two instructional days of the Fall and Spring terms will be determined and designated Reading Days for all courses including semester length distance learning courses. Alternate calendar courses may not include designated Reading Days and students electing to take those courses should refer to their syllabus or instructor direction.
Accordingly, classes will not be scheduled on those two days. Refer to the University Catalog (Policy 10-059) for specific dates and calendars for each academic term.
C. Final Course Examinations
The last six (6) days of the Fall and Spring semesters shall be set aside for final examinations and any final examination of a comprehensive nature must be given during this designated period. The period of two hours shall be allotted for each final examination.
1. Exceptions to Final Course Exam
Take-home final examinations, papers, projects, practicums, and competency examinations are exceptions to the above rule and may be scheduled for completion at any time at the discretion of the instructor.
2. Final Exam Matrix
The Final Exam Matrix for the Tampa Main Campus (Matrix) is designated to facilitate a conflict-free schedule for greater student success in the exam process. All Tampa Main Campus courses must comply to the Matrix as it is published with no deviations. All make-up exams, either for block exams or the individual exams, will be scheduled during the time period allotted for students that require a make-up exam.
If a student has a direct conflict of scheduled examinations that are scheduled according to the Final Exam Matrix or the exam schedule available at a USF System Institution, the student may petition the appropriate instructor to reschedule one of the student’s examinations. If a student has three or more examinations scheduled on the same day, the student may petition the appropriate instructor to reschedule one of the student’s examinations or the student may elect to take all exams on the same day. If a make-up exam is requested, it will be scheduled during the make-up exam time as posted on the Final Exam Matrix.
The “appropriate instructor” in case of examination time conflicts shall be determined by the following ordered list of priorities:
a. If a student has an exam conflict between courses offered on different campuses or institutions within the USF System, the course on the student’s home campus has priority.
b. Block finals have priority over non-block finals. When two block finals conflict, the higher numbered course takes priority.
c. Apart from block finals priority, examinations for graduate level courses have priority over examinations for undergraduate level courses.
d. Apart from block finals priority and within the level of the courses, undergraduate or graduate, examinations for numerically higher numbered courses have a priority over lower numbered courses.
e. If after applying items 1 through 4, there remains a conflict, priority shall be given to the course with the prefix closest to the beginning of the alphabet.
f. The instructor of the course not receiving priority shall provide for a make-up exam either in accordance with the designated make-up exam periods or at a mutually acceptable time for both the instructor and the student during the exam period.
The final examination schedule shall be published in the same manner and place as the schedule of classes.
Tobacco and Smoke Free University
I. PURPOSE AND INTENT
The University of South Florida-Sarasota Manatee (USFSM) has a vital interest in maintaining a safe and healthy environment. Therefore, it is the Policy of USFSM to provide a tobacco and smoke free environment for our students, faculty, staff, vendors and visitors.
II. STATEMENT OF POLICY
USFSM is a tobacco and smoke free campus. Tobacco use, distribution, or sale, including, but not limited to, smoking and chewing is prohibited. This Policy covers all buildings, property and grounds where USFSM business is conducted. For the purposes of this Policy only, the USFSM campus is defined as any and all space shown on the map referred to in Section IV. Faculty, staff, students, vendors and visitors are not allowed to use any tobacco products within this area.
“Tobacco” is defined as any product made of tobacco including, but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, pipes, bidis, hookahs, and any and all chewing tobacco products. “Smoking” is defined as inhaling, exhaling, burning, carrying or possessing any lighted tobacco product. “Tobacco Use” means the personal use of any tobacco product whether intended to be lit or not, which shall include smoking as defined above, as well as the use of an electronic cigarette or any other device intended to simulate smoking, and the use of smokeless tobacco, including snuff, chewing tobacco, smokeless pouches, or any other form of loose-leaf smokeless tobacco, and the use of unlit cigarettes, cigars, and pipe tobacco.
IV. CAMPUS BOUNDARIES
For the purposes of this Policy only, the USFSM campus boundaries are shown on the map
included herein titled USFSM CAMPUS BOUNDARY MAP – EXHIBIT A.
V. SMOKING ZONES
There are no designated smoking areas at any USFSM location.
Enforcement of this Policy depends upon the cooperation of all faculty, staff, students, vendors and visitors not only to comply with this Policy, but also to encourage others to comply with the Policy. Anyone who is in violation of the Policy (including faculty, staff, students, vendors or visitors) should be politely reminded of the Policy and asked to comply by discarding the tobacco product. Any student who continually refuses to abide by the Policy may be considered in violation of the student Code of Conduct and subject to its disciplinary procedures. Continuing violations by any faculty or staff member will be handled through normal University processes.
All attendees at non-University or public events, such as conferences, meetings, public lectures, social events and cultural events using USFSM facilities are required to abide by this Policy. Organizers of such events are responsible both for communicating this policy to attendees, and for its enforcement.
Tuition and Fees
Registration tuition and fees are assessed in accordance with University Board of Trustees rules, per USF System Regulation 4.0102, and are subject to change without prior notice. The USF System will make every effort to advertise any such changes if they occur.
Tuition and fee rates are posted on the websites for the USFSM Cashier and the USF System Controller. Schedules/Fee Statements are not mailed to the student. It is the student’s responsibility to review their financial account for accuracy and pay their tuition and fees in full by the appropriate due date as stated at http://www.usf.edu/business-finance/controller/student-services/deadline-dates.aspx. Failure to do so may result in cancellation of the student’s registration.
Unless the student has received a tuition and fee payment deferment (i.e., Financial Aid or Veterans), tuition and fees are due by the fifth day of each academic term. Students may view and/or pay their current term tuition and fees online by accessing the “Tuition, Fees & Payments” menu option in OASIS at https://webauth.usf.edu. Cash, checks and money orders are accepted at the USFSM Cashier’s Office for payment of tuition and fees. Checks, made payable to USF, may be mailed to the USFSM Cashier’s office, but must be postmarked by the U.S. Post Office, not office metered, by the applicable fee payment deadline. The University cannot be responsible for lost or misdirected U.S. Postal mail. Payment of tuition and fees by MasterCard, Discover or American Express debit or credit cards must be made online through OASIS. Please note that the University no longer accepts Visa cards for payment of tuition and fees. E-checks are also accepted through OASIS.
Excess Hours Surcharge
In 2009, the Florida Legislature implemented Section 1009.286, Florida Statutes to encourage students to complete their baccalaureate degree as quickly and efficiently as possible. It established what is commonly referred to as an “Excess Credit Hour Surcharge.” The provisions of this section became effective for students who entered a Florida community college or a Florida state university for the first time in the 2009-2010 academic year and thereafter. The bill requires universities to add a surcharge to each credit hour taken in excess of the total hours calculated, based on a percentage defined in law. See the following table:
|Students Entering as FTIC SUS (First Time in College State University System of Florida) or FTIC FCS (First Time in College Florida College System)||Fees to be Charged|
|Prior to Fall 2009||None|
|Fall 2009 – Summer 2011||50% for credits above 120% of total program hours|
|Fall 2011 – Summer 2012||100% for credits above 115% of total program hours|
|Fall 2012 and thereafter||100% for credits above 110% of total program hours|
The surcharge is assessed only on the tuition portion of the semester hour cost, not on the fees. The number of total program hours required for the baccalaureate degree will be identified by the student’s declared major. This is typically 120 semester hours, although some programs have been approved to require more than 120 semester hours. For further information, see the Board of Governors Regulation 7.003(21).
Note: No institution may waive the excess hours surcharge as the language of the statute is mandatory.
Repeat Course Surcharge
Initiated by the Florida Legislature (H.B. 1545 of 1997) to reduce costs, Section 1009.285 Florida Statutes requires that all state universities must monitor undergraduate student progress and charge students the “full cost of instruction” for certain repeats of undergraduate courses. This policy became effective in Fall 1997 and requires USF System Institutions to charge students a substantial per credit hour surcharge when they attempt a course three or more times within the USF System, unless the course is specifically designed to be repeated or is required to be repeated by their major. Requirements to earn a passing or higher grade than previously earned in a course do not exempt the surcharge. Students will be required to pay the surcharge in addition to the appropriate in-state or out-of-state tuition rates. It is important to note that all attempts count, including withdrawals after the first week of classes and courses with incomplete grades.
The USF System may grant exceptions to this rule based on extenuating circumstances and financial hardship. However, the USF System may only approve one appeal per course. Documentation, regardless of the situation, must be submitted with the request for a waiver of this surcharge. Extenuating circumstances are those circumstances determined by the University to be exceptional and beyond the control of the student and may include, but not be limited to, the following:
- Serious illness
- Documented medical condition preventing completion
- Death of an immediate family member
- Involuntary call to active duty
- University error
- Other emergency circumstances or extraordinary situations
The criteria used by the USF System for determining financial hardship should include, but not be limited to, qualification for federal need-based financial aid. Students with other documented financial hardships may also be considered.
The student must complete a Fee Adjustment Request Form and indicate that the request is for a waiver of the repeat course surcharge. They must also submit a statement that explains their request and provide all documentation relating to it. The completed form, with documentation, should be submitted to the Office of the Registrar for consideration.
Florida Prepaid College Program
Students participating in the Florida Prepaid College Program are responsible for paying all tuition and fees not covered under their Florida Prepaid Plan by the applicable payment deadline to avoid being assessed a $100.00 late payment fee.
Tuition Deferment for VA Students
The tuition deferment program for Veterans is set up through USF and the VA. Due to VA payments being delayed at times, a tuition deferment gives the student and the VA an extra 90 days past the start of the semester to pay for a student’s tuition and fees, per the Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018, Section 103PL 115-407. For more information, contact USFSM Veteran Services.
Intern Certificate of Participation
Individuals who have supervised interns, and who have registered for courses during an academic term, may present their Intern Certificate of Participation to the USFSM Cashier’s Office. The Certificate of Participation entitles holders to a waiver of only matriculation fees for a maximum of six (6) credit hours of instruction during a single academic term. Certificates are valid for three (3) years from the date of issuance. Tuition and fees not covered by the Certificate of Participation must be paid by the fifth day of the academic term in order to avoid assessment of a $100.00 late payment fee.
Employee Tuition Program
The USF System Employee Tuition Program authorizes full-time USF System employees who are appointed to permanent established positions to enroll in USF credit courses for a maximum of six (6) credit hours per academic term. Summer sessions A, B, and C are considered to be parts of one academic term. The employee must be appointed prior to the first day of class and expected to be employed full-time past the end of the academic term for which enrolled. For additional information, please visit the Human Resources website.
Senior Citizen Tuition Waiver Program
Florida residents who are 60 years of age or older as of registration day, and have lived in Florida for the last 12 months, may enroll, on a space-available basis, in certain undergraduate and graduate courses without paying fees. The Senior Citizen Tuition Waiver covers a maximum of twelve (12) credit hours per academic term and is applicable only if the student registers for these courses during the designated registration period. Due to the audit status, academic credit is not awarded, examinations are not required, and grades are not assigned. A parking permit, purchased from USFSM Parking Services, is required.
Students need not be present in order to register for courses; the Application and Registration worksheet may be submitted by mail, fax, or in person. It is the student’s responsibility to complete and submit the waiver forms allowing sufficient time for the forms to reach the Registrar’s Office by the registration deadline. Forms submitted after the registration deadline will not be processed.
Some courses require college approval, prerequisites, or have other restrictions which may limit registration. The necessary permits should be acquired in advance of registration. Additionally, the permits may be submitted electronically in OASIS by the issuing college. Under no circumstances will notes on plain paper without college letterhead be accepted.
Students may not pre-register for courses in which they plan to use the Senior Citizen Tuition Waiver. The waiver will not be processed if a senior citizen pre-registers and then submits a Senior Citizen Tuition Waiver form for those courses.
More information about the program can be found at the Office of the Registrar’s website. The Application Packet and Registration worksheet are on the USFSM Registration website, usfsm.edu/registration/.
Cancellation for Non-Payment of Tuition and Fees
Students not on an authorized deferred payment of tuition and fees and who have not paid their tuition and fees in full by the USF System designated payment deadline date will have their registration for the academic term canceled and will be dropped from classes. Students dropped from classes will receive no credit for courses taken during the academic term.
Returned Checks for Registration Tuition and Fees
A student’s current term registration is subject to cancellation if a check or an e-check presented in payment of tuition is returned to the University by the bank unpaid. A $100 Late Fee Payment and a $25 administrative charge will be assessed on any registration check returned to the University unpaid. Dishonored fee payment checks and associated fees must be paid within 10 calendar days to avoid cancellation of a student’s registration for the academic term.
Reinstatement from Cancellation for Non-Payment of Tuition and Fees
Students who successfully petition for reinstatement from registration cancellation due to non-payment of tuition and fees will be assessed a $100.00 late registration fee and a $100.00 late payment fee. Upon approval for reinstatement, all fees and other debts owed to the University must be paid in full before academic reinstatement will be affected.
Payment of Accounts Due the University
Charges assessed to students for loss or breakage of University equipment and/or books, fines, and other fees are due immediately. Delinquent accounts may be considered sufficient cause for cancellation of registration. USF System regulations prohibit registration, or release of transcripts, diplomas, or grades for any student whose account with the University is delinquent. Delinquent accounts may be turned over to a collection agency, and all collection costs, including legal fees, will be added to the student’s account balance. Financial aid from a succeeding academic year cannot be used to repay prior academic year debts.
Refund of Tuition and Fees Payments
The following refunds, less deductions for unpaid debts to the University, are authorized. A Refund Request Form must be completed to initiate the refund process. The form may be submitted to the USFSM Cashier’s Office or mailed to the address indicated on the bottom of the form.
- One-hundred percent (100%) of registration fees and tuition will be refunded if notice of withdrawal from the University is approved prior to the end of the drop/add period and written documentation is received from the student.
- Twenty-five percent (25%) of registration fees and tuition paid, less building and capital improvement fees, will be refunded if notice of withdrawal from “ALL” courses from the University is approved prior to the end of the fourth week of classes (Summer term is prior to the end of the third week of classes) and written documentation is received from the student.
- There is no refund of late registration and late payment fees unless a waiver has been approved.
Fee Adjustment Under Exceptional Circumstances
One-hundred percent (100%) of tuition and fees may be refunded if, within six (6) months of the end of the academic term to which the refund is applicable, a student who has withdrawn or dropped a course completes and files a Fee Adjustment Request Form with supporting documentation clearly citing extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control with the Registrar’s Office. The Registrar’s Office will review the form based on the following criteria:
- Illness of the student, confirmed in writing by a physician, of such severity or duration to preclude completion of the course(s).
- Death of the student or immediate family member (i.e., parent, spouse, child, or sibling), confirmed by death certificate and obituary indicating the student’s relationship to the deceased.
- Called to active military duty, involuntary or voluntary, confirmed by military orders.
- A situation in which the USF System is in error, confirmed by the appropriate USF System official in writing on official USF System letterhead.
- Other exceptional circumstances beyond the control of the student which precluded completion of the course(s), accompanied by both an explanatory letter and verifiable written documentation clearly supporting the student’s explanation.
Special requests for an extension of the six (6) month deadline must include specific facts supported by written explanation and verifiable documentation. These requests must indicate special circumstances beyond the control of the student which clearly impaired the student’s physical or mental ability to correct their academic/financial record at the USF System.
Pursuant to Public Law 102-325, the Higher Education Amendments of 1992, students attending the University for the first time who withdraw are entitled to a pro-rata refund of tuition, fees, room and board.
A student who receives financial aid and subsequently changes enrollment status which results in a refund in accordance with this section will have the appropriate share of the refund returned to the USF System financial aid programs in accordance with the Financial Aid Policy on Refunds and Repayments.
USF System Regulation USF3.0120: Financial Aid
USF System Regulation USF3.0121: Financial Aid Administration, Distribution and USF of Financial Aid Resources
USF System Policy 10-013: Financial Aid Policy on Refunds and Payments
USFSM makes every effort to ensure that all qualified students have access to an education. All student financial aid programs are administered or coordinated through the USFSM Office of Admissions and Financial Aid. The above website provides step-by-step guidance through the financial aid application process and lists all deadlines. The Office of Admissions and Financial Aid communicates important information regarding your aid via OASIS and official USF e-mail throughout the year.
The USF System Online Access Student Information System (OASIS) allows students to monitor the status of their financial aid from application to disbursement of funds. OASIS can be accessed through your USF NetID at http://my.usf.edu.
The first step in obtaining financial aid is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Be sure to list the University of South Florida System school code 001537 to receive your information. All students wishing to receive financial aid are encouraged to start the financial aid process as early as possible each year (beginning October 1). The USF System priority FAFSA deadline is January 1. Many programs are funded on a limited basis, so it is to your advantage to apply early. Priority application dates and detailed information regarding financial aid are provided each year on our website.
Tuition deferments are automatically posted for qualified financial aid applicants. Please check with the USFSM Office of Admissions and Financial Aid for eligibility. Upon satisfaction of eligibility criteria, financial aid will be credited to student accounts after the drop/add period. Monies in excess of charges will be electronically deposited to each student’s checking account via eDeposit, or checks will be mailed to student’s local address.
If you withdraw from USFSM, either officially or unofficially, before the end of a semester, you may be required to repay all or a portion of the aid you received. For detailed information on the Federal Return of Title IV Funds requirement visit http://www.usf.edu/financial-aid/know-this/withdraw.aspx.
The Office of Admissions and Financial Aid office at USFSM provides prospective and currently enrolled students with a central location to access scholarship information. The office monitors the Florida Bright Futures Scholarships and a variety of privately-funded scholarships made possible through the generosity of friends and alumni of the University. The Financial Aid office also manages the scholarship renewal process for students who have been awarded scholarships through USFSM. An online search for USF System scholarships can be found on the Financial Aid webpage.
The USF System Office of Undergraduate Admissions and the USFSM Office of Admissions and Financial Aid offers a number of scholarships based on academic merit to students planning to enter USFSM for the first time as a Freshman or an upper-level transfer student. These scholarships are highly competitive. The criteria noted for the various scholarships are used as minimum starting points for consideration and meeting or exceeding the minimum requirements will not guarantee selection. For non-Florida residents, a limited number of out-of-state tuition waivers are available based on academic performance.
New freshmen and transfer students are advised to contact the USFSM Office of Admissions and Financial Aid about the individual college scholarship opportunities. A list of scholarship opportunities can also be accessed by using the USF System Scholarship Search on the Financial Aid website.
Veterans Affairs (VA) Benefits
|Location:||USF Sarasota-Manatee: SMC B106
USF Tampa: SVC 2127
|Telephone:||USF Sarasota-Manatee: (941) 359-4291
USF Tampa: 813-974-2291
|Telephone:||VA Work Study at USFSM (941) 359-4291|
|Website USF Tampa||http://www.veterans.usf.edu/|
The USF System is approved for the education of veterans, eligible dependents, members of the selected reserve, and active-duty personnel who are eligible for benefits under public laws now in effect. All degree programs currently offered at USFSM are approved by the State Approving Agency.
Students who may be eligible for benefits are urged to contact Veterans Services for information, procedures, and forms as early as possible. To initiate, change, or renew benefits at USFSM, a request must be submitted through that office every semester.
To be eligible for full-time VA benefits at USFSM, undergraduate students must enroll for 12 or more semester hours, and graduate students must enroll for 9 or more semester hours each normal academic term. Pro-rated benefits are available for students enrolled less than full-time.
VA regulations require that students take only courses that are applicable to their degree program or other approved programs and make satisfactory progress toward their degree. Students should log on to USF Veterans Services web site for information on various programs/services and VA rules and regulations. Under no circumstances will the VA pay benefits to a student taking a course by audit. It is the student’s responsibility to inquire concerning all VA rules and regulations and to report any change in number of registered hours, change of majors, or adding a double major or dual degree which affects his/her benefits. Additionally, VA benefits will be terminated for students who are dismissed for academic or disciplinary reasons and can only be reinstated after academic counseling.
The VA toll-free number is 1-888-442-4551.
USF ID Card
The USFCard, the official identification card of the University of South Florida, provides electronic verification and validation for a variety of USF System services and functions. University policy requires that all students, faculty and staff members carry the USFCard while on campus. Students may be denied the use of USF System services (i.e., library services, obtaining tickets for USF System sporting events) if they are not in possession of their USFCard. The USFCard may also be used for printing services in the Information Commons at USFSM. Value can be added to the USFCard at usf.edu/bullbucks. The USFCard may be obtained at the USFSM Cashier’s Office located in room B116. Legal identification (i.e., driver’s licence, passport, or state/federal government photo identification card) must be presented to obtain the USFCard. Additional information pertaining to the USFCard can be found at it.usf.edu/services/usfcard.
Undergraduate Policies & Regulations
In this section...
- Academic Certificate
- Academic Major
- Academic Minor
- Academic Probation and Academic Dismissal
- Academic Regulations Committee
- Academic Renewal
- Academic Residence
- Associate in Arts Degree
- Change of USF Institution
- Credit by Examination
- Dean’s List & Regional Chancellor’s List
- Declaration of Major
- Degree Progression
- Double Majors and Dual Degrees
- Foreign Language Requirement Policy
- Grades, Scholarship Requirements, and Review Procedures
- Graduation Application
- Graduation Requirements
- Honors at Graduation
- Independent Study
- Mandatory Course Attendance at First Class Meeting
- Mid-Term Grades Posting
- Repeat Coursework
- Second Baccalaureate Degree (USFSM Transfer Students)
- Summer Enrollment Requirement
- Total Withdrawal
An organized set of courses offered as a distinct area of study that leads to specific educational or occupational goals. Certificates may consist of courses that are part of a major or courses that are created outside of a major. Students should obtain prior approval with the specific requirements and forms from the college and department in which the certificate is offered. Certificates are recorded on the transcript. A certificate of completion is awarded, not a diploma.
Each undergraduate certificate conforms to these University requirements:
1. Students must be admitted as undergraduate degree seeking or non-degree seeking to be eligible to receive an undergraduate certificate.
2. A minimum of 12 semester hours of credit used to satisfy the requirements of a certificate must be from USF courses; at least 50 percent of the required coursework must be earned from the institution awarding the certificate.
3. USF coursework for a certificate must have a minimum GPA of 2.00. Some undergraduate certificates have higher minimum GPA requirements.
An organized curriculum offered within a degree program. A major shall be reasonably associated with the academic discipline within the degree program under which it is offered and shall share common core courses with any other majors within the same degree program. The major is the student’s primary field of study. The number of credit hours for a major for each degree level shall be established by the USF System member institution in accordance with State regulations and SACSCOC minimum requirements. The degree program majors are recorded on both the transcript and the diploma.
Students choose their academic major based on a variety of reasons including the student’s areas of interest and abilities, past academic achievement and in preparation for a specific profession. A student may not have a major and a minor in the same program. College courses used in the major will not apply to the minor.
An academic minor is an optional complement to a bachelor’s degree in a particular field, leading to specific educational goals. Students interested in a particular minor should obtain the specific requirements from the appropriate colleges. Minors are recorded on the transcript and the diploma.
Each academic minor conforms to the University requirements:
- A minimum of eight (8) semester hours of credit used to satisfy the requirements of a minor must be from USFSM courses.
- A student may not have a major and a minor in the same program.
- College courses used in the major may not apply to the minor.
- USF System institution coursework for a minor must have a GPA of at least 2.00.
- USFSM undergraduate degree-seeking students are only eligible for minors offered at USFSM. Students at other USF system institutions are not eligible to receive minors at USFSM.
- A minor can be applied for and received only in conjunction with applying for and receiving a baccalaureate degree, except for students who have already received a baccalaureate degree from USFSM. Those students may earn certification of a minor by taking additional undergraduate coursework at USFSM and applying for the certification. Students who choose to pursue this option must submit the Post-Baccalaureate Minor application to their academic advisor within the first twenty (20) class days of the term they expect to complete the minor requirements.
Academic Probation and Academic Dismissal
The first time an undergraduate student’s USFSM GPA falls below a cumulative 2.00, the student will be placed on Academic Probation (AP). From the beginning of academic probation, the student must maintain at least a 2.00 GPA each term, and may not totally withdraw from any semester without cause.
Any student who withdraws from all classes after the fifth day of classes while on Academic Probation will be academically dismissed. Once on academic probation, academic advising prior to registration is mandatory each semester until the student is removed from probationary status. The student may remain on Academic Probation indefinitely as long as the student maintains a GPA of 2.00 or greater each semester. If at any time while on academic probation, the student’s semester GPA falls below a 2.00, the student will be academically dismissed from the university. Once academically dismissed, a student may only return to USFSM under the University’s Academic Renewal Policy. If academically dismissed from USFSM a student may not return to USFSM as a non-degree-seeking student.
Within their first year, first time in college (FTIC) students will be granted a one-time only academic dismissal deferment, allowing an additional semester of enrollment. Students will work with the USFSM FTIC and Persistence Advisor to create a plan for academic success in the deferred semester. It should be noted that deferring academic dismissal will not extend financial aid canceled due to poor academic performance.
The determination and notification of probationary status or academic dismissal will be made by the Registrar’s Office on the student’s semester grade report and academic record. A student who attends another college or university following academic dismissal will be classified as a former student returning and readmission will be based on the total record accumulated from all colleges and universities attended.
Once a student’s semester and overall GPA is at or above 2.0, the academic probation status will be removed.
If a student is academically dismissed or falls below a 2.00 GPA from USFSM and subsequently receives a BA/BS from another four-year institution, that student, when accepted to the University with the post-baccalaureate status, will have his/her academic record cleared.
Academic Regulations Committee
The Academic Regulations Committee (ARC) serves as a board of appeal for USFSM students who wish to secure waiver or modification of University-wide academic regulations. The ARC meets regularly and reviews petitions submitted by undergraduate and non-degree students. Undergraduate and non-degree students must petition and secure approval from the ARC to return to the University after having been academically dismissed or leaving on probation, to receive special consideration regarding an academic regulation, including late or retroactive drop of a course, late registration or late add of a course, deletion of a course, and/or withdrawal from a term.
The ARC will re-examine petition decisions on appeal when the student provides new and substantive information directly related to the petition or evidence that an error was made. A final ARC decision may be appealed through the College Dean or designee.
The University has implemented a statute of limitations on student petitions for retroactive adds, drops, withdrawals, and registration. A student will be limited to two (2) calendar years (six academic semesters/terms) for such appeals, whether the student is in attendance or not.
To petition the ARC, completed forms should be submitted to the office of Academic and Student Affairs, C107. A consultation with the Persistence advisor is required prior to a petition’s submission to the ARC. Students may contact their academic advisor for details regarding their submission. The appropriate forms may be obtained on the website or from the academic advising office. Students will receive notification of the committee’s decision by email to their USF account.
The University’s Academic Renewal policy allows students previously dismissed from the university, or former students returning with a USF GPA below 2.00, to renew their pursuit of baccalaureate degrees without the responsibility of having to overcome the entire burden of low grades and low grade point averages. To facilitate this opportunity, students who qualify for Academic Renewal may, with the approval of the ARC, have portions of their academic record excluded from calculation of their grade point averages (GPAs). The entire academic record, however, will continue to be reflected on their transcripts, even though a selected portion will not be counted in their GPAs. Students approved for Academic Renewal are admitted with the same terms of academic probation and dismissal as other undergraduate students. Academic Renewal will only be applied to a student’s academic record one time at USF. Students returning to the University under Academic Renewal may incur excess hours and associated monetary penalty.
Academic Renewal I (ARI)
Students who have been academically dismissed, or former students returning with a USF GPA below 2.00, may petition the ARC to return to the University under ARI. A student may be re-admitted to USFSM under ARI, after completing all requirements for the Associate of Arts degree or equivalent (including general education and the State Communication and Computation Requirements formerly known as Gordon Rule) at a two-year or four-year college. ARI students will enter USFSM as an upper-division student, and their USF grade point average will be calculated from that point forward. While ARI is required for students who have earned less than 60 credit hours, it is not restricted to those students. In order to graduate following re-admission under ARI, all campus and major residency and degree requirements must be met. Students who are admitted under ARI may be excluded from admission to limited-access programs and will not be considered for University Honors at graduation unless they meet the criteria using all grades earned.
Academic Renewal II (ARII)
ARII is available to students who were academically dismissed, or former students returning with a USF GPA below 2.00, and have 60 or more earned credits from the USF System or other institutions of higher education. These students may be re-admitted to USFSM under ARII after a break in USF enrollment for a full academic year (fall, spring, summer). Students may choose to complete major prerequisites at a non-USF institution during this time, but are not required to do so. Students who choose to take courses at a non-USF institution should meet with the academic advisor of their intended USFSM major prior to enrolling in courses elsewhere. In order to be considered for readmission under ARII, the student must submit a request to the ARC who will make the final decision regarding readmission. Following readmission under ARII, the student will have their USF GPA calculated from that point forward. In order to graduate, following readmission under ARII, all campus and major residency and degree requirements must be met. Students readmitted under ARII may be excluded from admission to limited access programs and will not be considered for University Honors at graduation unless they meet the criteria using all grades earned.
USF System Regulation
Any credits transferred from a USF System Institution must be processed as transfer credits from any regionally-accredited institution.
Registration and successful completion of at least thirty (30) of the last sixty (60) semester hours at the USF System Institution (home institution) from which the degree is to be conferred. In cases of emergency, a maximum of six (6) hours of the final thirty (30) semester hours may be completed by correspondence or residence at another accredited senior institution with the approval of the academic dean. Exceptions to the home institution rules in this paragraph may be made for students who are enrolled at other universities in USF-approved exchanges, study abroad programs, co-op training programs or correspondence courses from the University of Florida. CLEP credit does not count toward academic residence;
Beginning fall semester 2012, must complete successfully at least 50% of the required courses in the major in courses offered by the USF System Institution conferring the degree. In cases of hardship or lack of course availability, individual exceptions may be approved by the respective College Deans or designees to help ensure timely graduation.
Associate in Arts Degree
Upon the student’s successful completion of the minimum requirements for the Associate in Arts degree, the University of South Florida (University/USF) will present the student who has properly made application with an appropriate Degree.
- To receive the Associate in Arts, the student must complete sixty (60) hours of university credit; at least twenty (20) of the last thirty (30) credit hours or a total of thirty-six (36) credit hours must be completed at USF. The minimum grade point average must be 2.00 based on work attempted at USF. In addition, a transfer student must have a GPA of 2.00 or higher when combined with transfer work accepted and evaluated by the USF Office of Admissions. Physical Education and military science credits do not count toward the Associate in Arts degree. All students must satisfy the General Education Requirements of USF and must satisfy the requirements listed in Florida Statutes Section 1007.25 and in State Board of Education Rule 6A-10.030, prior to receiving an Associate in Arts Certificate.
- Beginning with students initially entering a Florida College System institution or State University System institution in 2014-2015 and thereafter, coursework for an Associate in Arts degree shall include demonstration in competency in a foreign language pursuant to Florida Statute 1007.262 (Also known as USF’s FLENT requirement).
- In order to receive an Associate in Arts degree, students must submit a graduation application prior to the application deadline. The deadline to apply in each semester is stated in the Academic Calendar in the catalog. The graduation application is available online in OASIS.
- The Associate in Arts degree must be awarded prior to the term that the student becomes eligible for the baccalaureate degree.
- Final processing for the Associate in Arts will be done after grades are processed at the end of the semester for which the student applied. All work, including transfer work, taken in that semester will be evaluated with respect to the requirements for the Associate in Arts degree.
- Any incomplete grades shown on the permanent record of an Associate in Arts applicant at the time grades are processed will be treated as an “F” in the calculation of grade point average. Transfer students who completed a substantial portion of the Associate in Arts degree requirements at another institution in the Florida College System will be encouraged to notify that institution of the additional USF credits that may be transferred to that institution towards conferral of that degree. If the former institution will not confer the Associate in Arts degree with the addition of USF transfer credits, but is eligible for the Associate in Arts degree at USF, then the USF institution will confer the Associate in Arts.
- The General Education Requirements will be based on the approved University policy in effect in the catalog year the student chooses according to the University policy regarding the choice of catalog. The consideration of whether or not General Education Requirements are met will be made without consideration of the student’s choice of major at the time he/she applies.
- University of South Florida credit hours will be broadly defined to include USF sponsored student exchange programs and the University of Florida Correspondence Division. The grades from these institutions, (except those earned through the University of Florida Correspondence Division) are recorded on the permanent record at USF, and included in the grade point average calculation, and will be counted in the student’s grade point average as work attempted at USF for the Associate in Arts degree.
- An applicant who has not been enrolled at USF for three (3) semesters may be contacted to ascertain whether or not that applicant meets the residency requirements.
- In approving any application for the Associate in Arts degree, satisfactory/unsatisfactory grades will be accepted according to the approved University policy in effect during the terms of the student’s enrollment without regard for the student’s declared major. Students must be aware that if they have taken any courses on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis where such grades are not acceptable by the college of the major, the students may be required to repeat particular courses for a traditional letter grade or take additional courses for a traditional letter grade to meet the college requirements.
- All University of South Florida colleges with undergraduate programs will accept the Associate in Arts from USF. That is, the student will be placed, at least, at the junior level and will be considered to have met the University’s General Education Requirements. The applicability of the courses taken by the student toward his/her major program will be determined by the college of the student’s major. Similarly, any special requirements for a student’s professional certification (e.g., Education and Engineering) are not necessarily met by the Associate in Arts Certificate, but could be included as part of the General Education Requirements. Thus, students should check with their colleges concerning meeting any special requirements in an efficient manner.
- The awarding of the Associate in Arts degree is posted on the permanent record but does not alter the calculation of the grade point average nor does it interrupt the accumulation of the student’s record.
- Students who follow a baccalaureate degree program as recommended by a college will not necessarily be eligible for the Associate in Arts degree prior to the completion of ninety (90) credit hours.
Specific Authority 1001.74, 1001.75, 1007.25, FS., Art. IX, Fla. Constitution and Resolutions issued by the FL Board of Governors. Law Implemented 1007.23, 1007.25 FS.
History – New (BOT approval) 4-19-90, Amended 8-19-90, 10-27-92, 9-19-93, formerly 6C4-3.019 F.A.C., Amended 7-27-07, 11-25-15 (technical), 5-31-16 (technical).
Change of USF Institution
The University of South Florida System consists of three separately accredited institutions – USF Tampa, USF St. Petersburg, and USF Sarasota-Manatee. Each Institution has unique policies as well as unique degree and residency requirements.
To help ensure that students are on track to graduate and are less likely to have excess credit hours, students are required to apply if they choose to change their USF home institution. Procedures may be found by visiting ugs.usf.edu/system/change-of-institution. The request to change institutions must be signed off by the student and approved by the incoming USF institution.
All first time in college students (FTIC) students must have completed at least three consecutive semesters, not including summer (i.e., fall, spring, fall), at their current institution before change of institution requests will be processed.
Credit by Examination
A student who feels they have already acquired the basic content of a course on their approved schedule should inquire about credit-by-examination. Some exams are offered through the College Level Examination Program (CLEP) and others may be offered within colleges. Interested students should obtain additional information from their advisors or Testing Services.
Credit earned through one examination program may not be duplicated by another examination or course. The following limitations should be recognized:
- CLEP credit will not satisfy USFSM’s residency requirement.
- Credit for the General Natural Science examination will be granted for non-majors only.
Certain General and Subject CLEP Examinations may be found at http://www.uc.usf.edu/testing/ and may apply to the General Education Requirements. Some programs do not award credit toward the degree for certain CLEP examinations, and certain graduate or professional schools such as law, medicine and engineering may not grant equal recognition to students with extensive examination credits. An academic advisor should be consulted to ascertain the applicability of a specific CLEP examination toward a student’s degree requirements and the advisability of taking the examinations in a student’s specific situation.
Students may also refer to collegeboard.org as a source of additional CLEP information.
I. INTRODUCTION (Purpose and Intent)
In order to provide greater flexibility and opportunity for students to shorten the time required to obtain a baccalaureate degree, the University of South Florida System (USF System) grants credit-by-examination equivalencies for the following acceleration mechanisms: Advanced Placement (AP), Advanced International Certificate of Education Program (AICE), International Baccalaureate (IB), College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), DANTES/DSST and Excelsior College exams.
II. STATEMENT OF POLICY
The University of South Florida System awards credit-by-examination based on the minimum guidelines as established by the Articulation Coordinating Committee (ACC) available on the flvc.org website, pursuant to Florida Statute 1007.27(2), and approved by the State Board of Education and Board of Governors.
Effective fall 2009, a maximum of 45 credit hours in any combination of the examinations provided by the Advanced Placement (AP), Advanced International Certificate of Education Program (AICE), International Baccalaureate (IB), College-Level Examination Program (CLEP), DANTES/DSST and Excelsior College exams will be accepted by the USF System. Course equivalencies for credit-by-exam are posted on the Undergraduate Studies website. Students who enter the USF System with more than 45 credit hours of examinations completed will work with an appropriate academic advisor to determine the most advantageous selection of the credits to be applied. Any requests for an exception to the 45 hour rule must be submitted to the Dean of Undergraduate Studies within thirty (30) days of first attendance.
Credit earned through these examination programs also applies toward satisfaction of the nine (9) credit hour Summer Attendance Requirement but only if the student enters the USF System with nine (9) or more credit hours from all acceleration programs combined (i.e. the listed examination programs plus Dual Credit).
The University of South Florida System will accept credit-by-examination included on transcripts from all accredited colleges, provided the scores earned are at or above the minimums as stated by the ACC.
Regional campuses and separately accredited institutions may have unique characteristics. Students, faculty and staff must check with their individual campuses and apply policies in conjunction and consistent with the specific characteristics, guidelines or procedures applicable to those campuses.
Dean’s List & Regional Chancellor's List
Full-time undergraduate students who demonstrate superior academic achievement during one (1) semester will be honored on a “Dean’s List” or “Regional Chancellor’s List.” To be eligible for this recognition, a student must complete at least twelve (12) hours of USF System courses in a given semester. The hours must be graded (A-F) with no incomplete grades, S/U grades, missing grades, or withdrawals during the semester.
The Dean’s List shall consist of students with a USF System term GPA of 3.90 or above.
The Regional Chancellor’s List shall consist of students with a USF System term GPA of 4.00.
The college dean in which the student is majoring will recognize the academic honor. Students who receive the honor will have it posted to their official transcript.
Students registered in the Office of Students with Disabilities Services whose approved accommodations include a reduced academic load are eligible by meeting the above parameters with at least nine (9) hours of graded USFSM courses completed in the semester and the recommendation from that office, to be confirmed by the College Dean.
Declaration of Major
It is advantageous for students to make early decisions about their majors to be on-track toward their degrees and to graduate in a timely manner. Students are urged to declare a major upon entry to the university. If they are unable to formally choose or declare a major or a pre-major, they should meet with an academic advisor or career counselor to determine a program that best matches their interests.
FTIC (First Time In College) students must be officially declared in a major or a pre-major before they register for more than 36 credits, including credit earned via Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, or Dual Enrollment coursework. Students will not be allowed to register for further credit coursework at USFSM until they have declared a major or pre-major.
Transfer students should declare their majors upon entry to USFSM. Transfer students who have not declared a major (or pre-major) and who have completed 75 or more credit hours of college coursework will not be allowed to register for further credit coursework at the university until they have declared a major or a pre-major. Students transferring in 75 or more credit hours will be required to declare a major (or pre-major) at the time of admission.
Many resources are made available by the university to assist students in making career decisions and choosing their majors. Information about these resources is readily available from academic advisors or the Career Center.
All students desiring to change their major should consult the Advising Office in SMC-C107.
Undergraduates must complete the Online Graduation Application and the Online Graduating Senior Survey by the official University deadline for the term in which they expect to graduate. Degree application deadlines are available in the Academic Calendar.
Students who have completed all the requirements for their degree will be required to graduate. Exceptions may be approved by college deans or their designees for up to two additional semesters but not to exceed 10 semesters total to complete a degree (eight semesters for the major and two additional semesters) to allow students to complete approved second majors or to complete clearly defined objectives to enhance qualifications for employment or graduate and professional programs. Exceptions may be made for part-time students. Unless undergraduate students receive approval from the Assistant Vice President for Student Success of an exception to the graduation request, USFSM may move the student through to graduation and confer the degree earned.
Students should be approved to pursue minors only if the minor can be completed without extending the time required for the students’ initially projected graduation date and without exceeding their Excess Credit Hour Surcharge (ECHS) threshold. Students in programs without available elective hours will not be approved for minors, unless an exception is approved by the College Dean or designee. Students are expected to demonstrate academic success (appropriate GPA for program, completion ratio, and success in prerequisites, core, or other related coursework for current major and requested minor) before they can be approved for a minor. Students will apply for a minor in the last term of enrollment provided the student will have completed all of the remaining course requirements for the minor in that term.
Students may be approved to pursue dual degrees and second majors only if they are able to complete both programs within no more than two additional semesters but not to exceed 10 semesters total to complete a degree from the initially projected graduation date or within the ECHS threshold for dual majors or dual degrees. Second majors are awarded only in conjunction with the receipt of a baccalaureate degree. Students are expected to apply for a second major or degree only after demonstrating academic success (appropriate GPA for both major programs, completion ration, and success in prerequisites, core or other related coursework for current major and second major or degree). Students will typically be approved for a second major or dual degrees before exceeding 96 credit hours (not counting in the latter any credit from examination or dual enrollment). The students’ program of study is delineated on the application form and must be reviewed by both program advisors prior to submission for approval. Third majors will only be allowed in exceptional circumstances when the student can complete within the above criteria.
No degree will be conferred if a charge of academic dishonesty or student conduct violation is pending and the penalty could be dismissal, expulsion, failing grade or any combination of the above, until the charge is resolved and degree requirements are met.
As per USF System Regulation USF3.007 successful completion of at least 25% of the total credit hours required for the degree must be in courses offered by the USF System Institution conferring the degree. Students are expected to graduate within the minimum number of semesters appropriate to their academic work completed at the time of their admission and the extent to which they are able to be enrolled full-time.
Double Majors and Dual Degrees
Double Undergraduate Major
Students may elect to graduate with two majors. In that event, they must apply independently to each college and be assigned an advisor in each discipline. The student must meet all requirements of each major separately. Both majors must reside at USFSM. In declaring a second major, the student will be charged the Excess Credit Hour Surcharge required by the state for excess credit hours beyond the official limit (after 110-120 percent of those allowed for the first major, up to thirty credit hours allowed for the second major). Both majors will be awarded in the same term at the completion of the degree. The student will not receive two degrees.
A student may drop a course(s) during the drop/add periods (first five days of classes) and no entry of the course(s) will appear on any permanent academic records. No tuition or fees will be assessed for course(s) dropped within that period.
Students may also withdraw from courses between the second and tenth week of the semester, except for summer sessions. All applicable registration fees must be paid for the course(s) and a “W” grade will reflect on the permanent academic record. Students who withdraw may not continue attending class. Withdrawal deadlines for summer sessions are listed in the Academic Calendar and are published in the USF System Schedule of Classes for summer terms. Appeals for withdrawals after the tenth week of the semester must be made to the Academic Regulations Committee.
Undergraduate students are limited to a total of five (5) course withdrawals while enrolled as a degree-seeking or non-degree seeking student at USF System institutions. Course withdrawals are limited to three (3) courses for students with less than or equal to sixty (60) semester credit hours, and two (2) courses for students with more than 60 semester credit hours. Only in extenuating circumstances will approval be granted for more than five (5) course withdrawals. Appeals for additional course withdrawals due to extenuating circumstances must be submitted to the Academic Regulations Committee for review.
Effective Fall 2016, all students will be limited to two (2) withdrawals from graduate courses while enrolled as degree-seeking or a non-degree seeking at USF. Requests for withdrawals from graduate level courses are submitted via the Withdrawal from Course Request form. Only in extenuating circumstances will approval be granted for more than two graduate course withdrawals. Appeals for additional graduate course withdrawals due to extenuating circumstances must be submitted via the Graduate Petition Form.
Under specific conditions, consideration for refund of tuition and fees may be requested if a Fee Adjustment Request form accompanied by verifiable supporting documentation is submitted to the Office of the Registrar at USF Tampa within six (6) months from the end of the semester to which any refund would be applicable.
Foreign Language Requirement Policy
All students pursuing a B.A. degree must satisfy the college-level foreign language requirement, which in Florida is met through satisfactory completion (C or better) of a second-level language course. USFSM accepts many languages to fill this requirement; students seeking to have credit accepted or to demonstrate competency for exemption, should discuss this with their academic advisor.
At USFSM, students can meet the foreign language requirement through the study of two (2) languages:
Spanish Course Sequence (accepted in all degree programs)
- SPN 1120 Beginning Spanish I (4 credits) – for those with no previous Spanish language experience
- SPN 1110 Introductory Spanish for High Beginners (3 credits) – an alternative to SPN 1120
- SPN 1121 Beginning Spanish II (4 credits) – must be completed or exempted
American Sign Language Course Sequence (accepted in some degree programs)
- ASL 2140C Basic American Sign Language I (4 credits)
- ASL 2150C Intermediate American Sign Language (4 credits)
Spanish Language Placement
In Spanish, it is possible to exempt one or both courses through a placement test. The placement test assesses the student’s skills level to indicate the appropriate class for the student to enter. By taking the placement test, students can avoid spending time, effort, and money on unnecessary classes.
Students must take the placement test
- If they have taken one (1) or more years of high-school Spanish,
- If the test indicates that one’s skills level is equal to accomplishment of SPN 1120, one may exempt that course and enter SPN 1121.
- If the test indicates that one’s skills level is below the accomplishment of SPN 1120, one may take SPN 1110 (3 credits) to raise one’s competency to what will be needed to enter SPN 1121. Or one may elect to take SPN 1120 (4 credits), but if one elects this option, one will earn only an S/U grade.
Students may take the placement test
- If they grew up speaking Spanish with family and friends
- Depending on one’s assessed skills level, one may exempt none, one, or both courses.
- If they took SPN 1120 at USF more than two terms previously
- If the test indicates that one’s skills level is below the accomplishment of SPN 1120, one may retake SPN 1120 if qualified for “grade forgiveness”
- Or one may pay to audit SPN 1120 or SPN 1110 as space allows.
- If they took college Spanish elsewhere.
- If the test indicates that one’s skills level is below the accomplishment of SPN 1120, one may pay to audit SPN 1120 or SPN 1110 as space allows.
Spanish Language Competency Levels
The USFSM Spanish language placement test identifies four levels of language competency, based on the National Proficiency Guidelines of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL, 2012).
||A student whose performance on the placement test is rated as “Novice-Low” will be placed in SPN 1120.|
||A student whose performance on the placement test is rated as “Novice-Mid” will be placed in SPN 1110.|
||A student whose performance on the placement test is rated as “Novice-High” will be placed in SPN 1121.|
|A student whose performance on the placement test is rated “Intermediate-Low” or above will be exempt from taking Spanish courses to meet the foreign language requirement.|
Grades, Scholarship Requirements, and Review Procedures
USFSM is interested in each student making reasonable progress towards his/her educational goals and will aid each student through guidance and advising. To make students aware of their academic progress, the University has enacted a system of grading and policies of Academic Probation and Academic Dismissal that indicates whether or not a student is showing sufficient progress toward meeting degree requirements. Notations of Grades, Academic Probation, and Academic Dismissal are posted to the student’s academic record.
When a student is academically dismissed from the University and is ineligible to re-enroll, it may be in his/her best interest to re-evaluate educational goals with a college academic advisor. If poor academic performance has resulted from extenuating circumstances, or significant time has elapsed and the student has gained adequate maturity and motivation, a petition to the Academic Regulations Committee can be submitted for permission to re-enroll. See “Academic Regulations Committee” for information on petitioning.
Grade Forgiveness Policy
USFSM’s grade forgiveness policy permits an undergraduate to repeat a course and have the repeated grade computed in his/her GPA in place of the original grade, providing the repeat grade is posted as “D-” or higher (exception – see Honors at Graduation) and is higher than the first grade. Normally, grade forgiveness may only be applied to a specific course that a student chooses to repeat. No course taken on the S/U grade basis may have the grade forgiveness applied. Under unusual circumstances, a different but similar course may be used if the substitute course has been previously approved by the college dean and is on file in the Office of the Registrar.
The grade forgiveness policy cannot apply to any course in which the grade of “FF” has been recorded.
Any undergraduate or non-degree-seeking student who wishes to implement grade forgiveness must:
- Complete a “Grade Forgiveness Request Form” (available on the Office of the Registrar’s website) for each course to be repeated. It is recommended that the student meet with his/her academic advisor to determine if a grade forgiveness is appropriate.
- Adhere to the following conditions:
- A limitation of applying grade forgiveness to three USF System courses with no more than one repeat per course.
- With prior approval of the college dean, a course different from a course on the approved list may be substituted in the following cases:
- 1. The substitute course is a change in prefix, number, hours, or title, but not a substantive change in content from the original course.
- 2. The substitute course replaces a course no longer offered by the institution.
- The repeated course must be taken under the standard grading system (A – F) and the latest grade must be posted as “D-” or higher (grades of S/U are not permitted) and be higher than the first grade.
- All grades remain on the transcript. The original course grade will be annotated with “E” to indicate that the course has subsequently been repeated and the original grade is not computed in the GPA.
- Individual colleges may have further restrictions; therefore, the student should consult with his/her college.
- This policy is applicable to undergraduate and non-degree-seeking students only, and applies to 1000-to-5000-level courses. Once students have been awarded a bachelor’s degree from USFSM, they may not repeat a course and be forgiven the original grade, taken prior to graduation.
- The policy applies only to courses taken originally at USF System and repeated at USF System.
Effective Fall semester 2000, a plus/minus grading system was implemented with the corresponding quality points. The use of the plus/minus grading system is at the discretion of the individual faculty member.
A student’s measure of academic achievement is recorded on the academic record based on the following grading system:
|E||Course repeated, not included in GPA|
|CF||Cancelled financially, course was cancelled due to financial reasons|
|CMU||Cancelled, missing grade that has turned to a “U”|
|IA||Incomplete, grade points not applicable|
|IB||Incomplete, grade points not applicable|
|IC||Incomplete, grade points not applicable|
|ID||Incomplete, grade points not applicable|
|IF||Incomplete grade changed to Failure|
|IU||Incomplete grade changed to Unsatisfactory|
|M||Missing grade/No grade submitted by instructor, grade points not applicable|
|N||Audit, grade points not applicable|
|S||Satisfactory, grade points not applicable|
|U||Unsatisfactory, grade points not applicable|
|W||Withdrawal from course without penalty|
|WC||Withdrawal for extenuating circumstances|
|Z||Indicates continuing registration|
Grade Point Average
USFSM grade-point average (GPA) is computed by dividing the total number of quality points (see grading system section) by the total hours attempted at institutions in the USF System. The total quality points are figured by multiplying the number of credits assigned to each course by the quality point value of the grade given. Credit hours for courses with grades of “I”, “IU”, “M”, “N”, “S”, “U”, “W”, “Z”, and grades that are preceded by an “E” are subtracted from the total hours attempted before the GPA is calculated.
Credit hours for repeated USF System coursework will be awarded only once per course unless the course is a university-approved repeatable course. “D” and “F” grades, however, for repeated USF System coursework will be counted in the computation of the student’s GPA as many times as those grades for that course are recorded. If a student originally earns a “C” or higher in a course that may not be repeated for additional credit and earns a “C” or higher on a subsequent enrollment, the new grade is not computed in the USF System GPA unless the forgiveness policy is being applied.
“I” Grade Policy
An “I” grade indicates incomplete coursework and may be awarded to graduate and undergraduate students. (Undergraduate rules apply to non-degree-seeking students.) It may be awarded to an undergraduate student only when a small portion of the student’s work is incomplete and only when the student is otherwise earning a passing grade. Until removed, the “I” is not computed in the GPA for either undergraduate or graduate students.
The time limit for removing the “I” is to be set by the instructor of the course. For undergraduate students, this time limit may not exceed two academic semesters, whether or not the student is in residence, and/or graduation, whichever comes first. “I” grades not removed by the end of the time limit will be changed to “IF” or “IU,” whichever is appropriate. If an instructor is willing, he or she may accept work from a student after an “I” grade has changed to an IF or IU grade, and assign the student a final grade in the course, unless the student has graduated.
Whether or not the student is in residence, any change to “IF” grades will be calculated in the cumulative GPA and, if applicable; the student will be placed on appropriate probation or academically dismissed. Students are not required to re-register for courses in which they are only completing previous course requirements to change an “I” grade. However, if a student wants to audit a course for review in order to complete course requirements, full fees must be paid.
“M” Grade Policy
An “M” grade is automatically assigned as a default grade when the instructor does not submit a grade for a student. (Undergraduate rules also apply to non-degree-seeking students.) Unless a change of grade is submitted, the “M” grade will remain on the transcript and will not be computed in the student’s GPA.
S/U Grade System
Course with No-Option
Certain courses have been designated as S/U courses. The “S” and “U” grades are used to indicate the student’s final grade. These S/U only courses are identified with (S/U only) after the course definition in this catalog. No grading system option is available to students or faculty in these courses.
Courses with Option
The following restrictions may apply to any undergraduate course taken on an S/U basis by a student:
- Required courses in the major may not be taken on an S/U basis.
- Specifically designated required courses in the distribution requirements of the student’s college may not be taken on an S/U basis.
- Courses to satisfy the Writing (Communication) and Mathematics (Computation) Requirements, formerly known as Gordon Rule, may not be taken on an S/U basis.
- Courses to satisfy General Education may not be taken on an S/U basis.
- Courses to satisfy USF’s B.A. foreign language requirement may not be taken on an S/U basis.
- All elective courses for the major and all elective courses in the distribution requirements and all other free elective courses may be taken on an S/U basis except where:
- The certifying college restricts the number of courses that may be taken on an S/U basis in any one or all of the above areas or restricts the total number of S/U courses that can be accepted for all of the above areas.
- The certifying college specifies that certain courses may not be taken on an S/U basis.
- The instructor of a course refuses to allow the course to be taken on an S/U basis.
Mechanism for Assigning S/U Grades
The method by which a student receives an “S” or “U” grade in an option course will consist of the following:
- A written agreement signed by both instructor and student shall be filed with the USFSM Office of Records and Registration as may be designated by the college. The college shall set the deadline (no later than the last day of classes for the term) for the student to decide if he/she wishes to take the course on an S/U basis.
- The instructor shall assign final letter grades “A”, “B”, “C”, “D”, “F”, or “I”, but will transmit to the Registrar “S” or “U” consistent with the following:
- Letter grade, “A”, “B”, “C”, or “C-“ shall be equivalent to a letter grade of “S.”
- Letter grades “D” or “F” shall be equivalent to a letter grade of “U.”
- “S” and “U” grades are not computed in the student’s GPA.
In order to graduate, a student must submit a graduation application for the bachelor’s degree. The graduation application for the bachelor’s degree is available online in OASIS. Inquiries concerning approval or denial of graduation should be made to the appropriate academic advisor.
This application must be submitted in the term of expected graduation by the deadline noted in the academic calendar. This allows time for ordering academic regalia for participation in the graduation ceremony, certification of graduation by the end of the term, inclusion of name in the graduation bulletin, and timely ordering of the diploma.
Students who submit the graduation application after the posted deadline but prior to the last day of classes for the academic term, and who are determined to have met all graduation requirements in that semester, may have their graduation posted that term. Late student applications may not be processed before the next term’s registration period if they have not met all degree requirements.
Applications received after the last day of classes will result in the graduation being posted at the end of the following academic term. If a student applies for graduation and is not approved, a new application for degree must be submitted by the deadline in a new term. In order for the degree statement to appear on a student’s academic record, the student must file the aforementioned application whether or not participation in the commencement ceremony is desired.
It is the student’s responsibility to clear all “I” grades (in-completes) in courses required for graduation and to provide official transcripts of all transferred coursework needed for graduation at least three (3) weeks prior to the end of the term in which he/she expects to graduate.
A student applying for a second undergraduate major must do so within the same deadline set for applying for a degree.
Students applying for a minor must complete the following:
- Apply for the minor online in OASIS; listing both the minor and the college responsible for the minor on the application; and
- Have no “I” grade in required courses.
For purposes of honors recognition at the ceremony, students must have a 3.50 GPA before the term in which they plan to graduate to have honors recognized publicly at the commencement ceremony.
Although applications will be accepted until the last day of classes for the semester of graduation, students applying late will jeopardize their chances of having met all requirements and be denied graduation as a result.
In addition to the USF System requirements, USFSM minimum requirements for graduation consists of completion of the Core Curriculum.
USF System Regulation USF 3.007
A student is academically eligible to receive a Baccalaureate degree from individual institutions in the University of South Florida System (USF System) when a student completes the requirements of entities including (1) the Board of Governors (BOG), (2) the USF System, (3) the Program, College or Institution requirements, and (4) general academic approval by the University. The requirements are outlined in more detail below.
(a) Satisfactory completion of general education requirements consisting of a minimum of:
- Thirty-six (36) semester hours in the subject areas of communication, mathematics, social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences, including:
- Six (6) semester hours of English coursework (formerly known as Gordon Rule courses) in which the student is required to demonstrate college level writing skills through multiple assignments and six (6) additional semester hours of coursework with similar writing requirements. Students awarded college credit in English based on their demonstration of writing skills through dual enrollment, advanced placement, or international baccalaureate instruction shall be considered to have satisfied this requirement to the extent of the college credit awarded.
- Six (6) semester hours of mathematics coursework (formerly known as Gordon Rule courses) at the level of college algebra or higher. Applied logic, statistics and other computation-based coursework that may not be offered by a mathematics department may be used to fulfill three (3) of the six (6) hours required by this section. Students awarded college credit based on their demonstration of mathematics skills at the level of college algebra or higher through dual enrollment, advanced placement, or international baccalaureate instruction shall be considered to have satisfied this requirement to the extent of the college credit awarded.
- For students entering the University as a first-time-in-college student beginning Fall term 2015, at least one (1) course from each of the general education subject areas listed below in this section. These courses comprise the general education core as required per section 1007.25(3), Florida Statutes.
- One of the following courses in Communication: ENC X101 English Composition I; orA course with an ENC prefix for which ENC X101 is a direct prerequisite.
- One of the following courses in Humanities: ARH X000 Art Appreciation; or HUM X020 Introduction to Humanities; or LIT X000 Introduction to Literature; or MUL X010 Introduction to Music Literature/Music Appreciation; or PHI X010 Introduction to Philosophy; or THE X000 Theatre Appreciation.
- MAC X105 College Algebra; or MAC X311 Calculus I; or MGF X106 Liberal Arts Mathematics I; or MGF X107 Liberal Arts Mathematics II; or STA X023 Statistical Methods; or a mathematics course for which one of the above general education core course options in mathematics is a direct prerequisite.
- One of the following courses in Natural Sciences: AST X002 Descriptive Astronomy; or BSC X005 General Biology; or BSC X010 General Biology I; or BSC X085 Anatomy and Physiology I; or CHM X020 Chemistry for Liberal Studies; or CHM X045 General Chemistry I; or ESC X000 Introduction to Earth Science; or EVR X001 Introduction to Environmental Science; or PHY X020 Fundamentals of Physics; or PHY X048 General Physics with Calculus; or PHY X053 General Physics I; or a natural science course for which one of the above general education core course options in natural science is a direct prerequisite.
- One of the following courses in Social Sciences: AMH X020 Introductory Survey Since 1877; or ANT X000 Introduction to Anthropology; or ECO X013 Macroeconomics; or POS X041 American Government; or PSY X012 Introduction to Psychology; or SYG X000 Principles of Sociology.
NOTE: Students who transfer into a state university or between state universities shall be required to meet the above general education core requirements if the students were classified as first-time-in-college at their original postsecondary institution Fall Term 2015 and thereafter. Any course accepted by an institution in the Florida College System or State University System as meeting the general education core at that institution shall be accepted as meeting the core requirements at all institutions. All credit earned by other transfer students shall be evaluated by the receiving institution on a course-by-course basis to determine core equivalency. Credit earned through an acceleration mechanism in Section 1007.27, Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6.006, will meet the related general education core course requirement.
(b) Civic Literacy
Baccalaureate degree-seeking students initially entering a state university fall semester 2018 and thereafter must demonstrate competency in civic literacy through one of the following options prior to graduation:
(1) Successfully passing either POSX041 American Government or AMHX020 Introductory Survey Since 1877. Each of the courses must include the following competencies:
- Understanding of the basic principles and practices of American democracy and how they are applied in our republican form of government;
- An understanding of the United States Constitution and its application;
- Knowledge of the founding documents and how they have shaped the nature and functions of our institutions of self-government; and
- An understanding of landmark Supreme Court cases, landmark legislation and landmark executive actions and their impact on law and society.
(2) Achieving the standard score on one of the following assessments:
|U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Naturalization Test – Civics (U.S. history and government) with supplemental questions||60|
|Advanced Placement Government and Politics: United States||3|
|Advanced Placement United States History||4|
|CLEP American Government||50|
(c) Updates or changes to State and BOG Requirements. The USF System must comply with any updates or changes to state mandates or BOG requirements. The USF System will incorporate those changes in this Regulation by technical amendment as quickly as possible. However, at all times, including what may be an interim processing time, students will be held to the most current standards established by the BOG or state law.
(2) USF System Requirements. In addition to Florida Board of Governors and/or state requirements, the USF System has the following USF specific minimum requirements that are designed to assure the academic integrity of the degree programs at each System Institution:
- Successful completion of a minimum of 120 unduplicated semester credit hours through university coursework, acceleration mechanisms, and/or transfer credit, including courses specifically approved as repeatable for credit within the System (e.g. practica, ensembles and field experiences);
- A minimum adjusted grade point average (GPA) of 2.00 on all course work taken at the USF System Institution from which the degree is conferred and an overall 2.00 average on all college-level work attempted;
- Satisfactory completion of major requirements in a chosen degree program, including additional requirements set by the USF System Institution and college offering the degree;
- Successful completion of at least forty-two (42) semester hours in courses numbered 3000 and above;
- Successful completion of at least 25% of the total credit hours required for the degree must be in courses offered by the USF System Institution conferring the degree;
- Registration and successful completion of at least thirty (30) of the last sixty (60) semester hours at the USF System Institution (home institution) from which the degree is to be conferred. In cases of emergency, a maximum of six (6) hours of the final thirty (30) semester hours may be completed by correspondence or residence at another accredited senior institution with the approval of the academic dean. Exceptions to the home institution rules in this paragraph may be made for students who are enrolled at other universities in USF-approved exchanges, study abroad programs, co-op training programs or correspondence courses from the University of Florida. CLEP credit does not count toward academic residence;
- Beginning fall semester 2012, students must complete successfully at least 50% of the required courses in the major in courses offered by the USF System Institution conferring the degree. In cases of hardship or lack of course availability, individual exceptions may be approved by the respective College Deans or designees to help ensure timely graduation;
- To help ensure that students are on track to graduate and are less likely to have excess credit hours, students are required to apply to change USF institutions (USF, USFSM, USFSP) and follow the appropriate procedures. All FTIC students must have completed at least three consecutive semesters, not including summer (i.e., Fall, Spring, Fall), at their current institution before change of institution requests will be processed. The request to change institutions must be signed off by the student and approved by the incoming USF institution.
- Students who have entered a university in the State of Florida University System with fewer than sixty (60) hours of credit are required to earn at least nine (9) hours prior to graduation by attendance in one or more summer terms in courses offered by a USF System Institution or any one of the State University System of Florida institutions. This requirement may be waived in cases of unusual hardship to the individual;
- Satisfaction of the foreign-language admissions requirement by having two (2) sequential units of the same foreign language in high school, or eight (8) semester hours of the same foreign language in college, or documented equivalent proficiency; and
- The student’s degree program (major) will appear on the baccalaureate diploma. (If a student satisfies all requirements for two (2) majors, including admission, prerequisite, core, etc., both majors may appear on the diploma).
(3) Program, College, or Institutional Requirements: All students must be aware of and satisfactorily complete any additional requirements that may be required by a specific program, college or institution from which they are graduating as set forth in handbook, catalog, or other published criteria.
(4) General Academic Approval: Successful completion of academic coursework constituting the student’s program of studies, minor, honors thesis, or certification examination does not guarantee award of the baccalaureate degree. Faculty judgment of the academic performance of the student is inherent in the educational process in determining whether the award of the baccalaureate degree or admission into a higher level degree program is warranted.
Authority: Art. IX, Sec. 7, Fla. Constitution; Fla. Board of Governors Regulations 1.001, 6.016, 6.017; 1007.25, F.S.
History – New (BOT approval) 10-6-75, Amended 7-3-79, 2-22-82, Formerly 6C4-3.07, F.A.C. Amended 4-19-90, 8-19-90, 12-2-92, 8-10-93, 7-17-94, 7-20-95, Formerly 6C4-3.007, F.A.C., Amended 2-21-11, 9-21-11, 07-25-12, 7-9-15 (technical), 2-22-16 (technical).
Honors at Graduation
To be considered for honors at graduation, a baccalaureate candidate must have completed at least forty (40) credits of graded upper-level work within the USF system institutions. In addition, a student must have earned a grade point average of 3.50 or higher for all graded coursework attempted within the USF System Institutions, and 3.50 GPA in all post-secondary coursework.
For those students in programs requiring multiple clinical experiences (such as Education), a baccalaureate candidate must have completed at least thirty (30) hours of graded upper level coursework and have earned a grade point average of 3.5 or higher for all graded coursework attempted within the USF System Institution. In addition, to be eligible for honors, all students who have post-secondary work elsewhere must have an overall GPA of 3.50 or higher counting all courses within the USF System institution as well as all transferable work attempted at other institutions.
The grade forgiveness policy within the USF System or other institutions and plus/minus grades awarded at other institutions will not be applicable in computing the GPA for honors. In addition, students with a record of academic dishonesty appearing on any transcripts may graduate from a degree program after meeting all degree requirements, but will not be eligible for honors at graduation, including the honor of graduating from the Honors College or a college honors program.Criteria for Honors at Graduation:
- Cum Laude (with honor): 3.50 USF System GPA or higher AND 3.50 – 3.69 overall GPA
- Magna Cum Laude (with high honor): 3.50 USF System GPA or higher AND 3.70-3.89 overall GPA
- Summa Cum Laude (with highest honor): 3.50 USF System GPA or higher AND 3.90 overall GPA or higher
In addition, each college dean has the option to select on the basis of exceptional achievement 1% of the college’s graduates or 1 student per semester for graduating with distinction.
For purposes of honors recognition at the commencement ceremony, students must have a 3.50 GPA before the term in which they plan to graduate to have honors recognized publicly at the commencement ceremony.
NOTE: The GPA is not rounded up when determining honors at graduation (e.g., 3.69 is not the same as 3.70). The forgiveness policy at USF and other institutions and plus/minus grades awarded at other institutions will not be applicable in computing the GPA for honors. In addition, students with a record of academic dishonesty appearing on any transcript(s) will not be eligible for honors at graduation.
Undergraduate students wishing to take a course by independent study must contact their academic advisor and the instructor of the course for permission. The instructor specifies the requirements to be completed by the student including tests, periodic class attendance, term papers, etc.
Not all courses in USFSM may be taken by independent study. The respective colleges have jurisdiction in the determination of which courses may be taken in this manner.
The regular grading system applies to all independent study students. Grades earned by independent study have the same status as those acquired through regular class attendance. Students taking a course by independent study must register for the specific course section in the regular manner.
Mandatory Course Attendance at First Class Meeting
This policy has been put into effect so that USFSM may effectively utilize classroom space and to ensure that all students have maximum opportunity to enroll in classes where demand exceeds availability of seats.
Students are required to attend the first class meeting of undergraduate courses for which they registered prior to the first day of the term. Names of students who register prior to the first day of the term are shown on the first class roll in Canvas for each course section. The first day class roll is used by professors to drop students who do not attend the first day of class. Students having extenuating circumstances beyond their control and who are unable to attend the first class meeting must notify the instructor or the college prior to the first class meeting to request waiver of the first class attendance requirement. Please note that the Registrar’s Office does not add students to any courses. Students are required to add their courses via OASIS. To avoid fee liability and academic penalty, the student is responsible for ensuring that they have dropped or been dropped from all undesired courses by the end of the 5th day of classes. Refer to USF System Policy 10-006.
Mid-Term Grades Posting
I. PURPOSE & INTENT
The University of South Florida System (USF System) is committed to providing the necessary information to enable students to manage their academic progress. This Policy is one of many university initiatives directed at assisting students in effectively meeting their academic goals.
II. STATEMENT OF POLICY
It is the student’s sole responsibility to be aware of their academic standing and grade status in all courses. In an attempt to assist the student in evaluating his academic status mid-term, the University requires Instructors to submit midterm grades electronically for each student enrolled in 1000, 2000 and 3000 level courses. Instructors may choose to not report mid-term grades for alternate calendar courses, study abroad, directed studies, internships and other courses that do not follow the normal course schedule for the academic term, although they are encouraged to do so if appropriate. This is a courtesy to the student and failure of an instructor to post the mid-term grades will not be grounds for a student academic grievance nor will it be justification for a retroactive drop as the student is presumed to be aware of current academic status.
III. PROCESS STEPS
The Midterm Grade Reports are submitted after Week 7 or, for summer courses, soon after the midpoint of the time period that the course is conducted. The purpose of the Midterm Grade Report is to provide students in 1000, 2000 and 3000 level courses with information on whether they are making sufficient progress toward meeting the course requirements. This information is available to students in OASIS as a progress report for all students in Lower Level and early Upper Level courses. This Early Warning System provides midterm grade information that assists students and their advisors in determining if academic progress is sufficient in the course at a time where the student may be permitted to drop the course (although beyond the drop/add period resulting in fee liability) and receive a “W” for the course. This is an academic action only and does not support any financial refund or adjustment and students will remain responsible for all applicable registration fees for the course(s). The academic action will permit a “W” grade to reflect on the student’s permanent academic record. Students who drop may not continue attending class. Drop deadlines for each semester and summer sessions are listed in the Academic Calendar and are published in the USF Schedule of Classes.
The credit hours for a course that has been repeated may be counted only once toward the minimum 120 semester credit hours (earned hours) required for graduation. All credit hours (except when grade forgiveness is applied) are calculated in the GPA. For information regarding fees for repeat course work, refer to the Repeat Course Surcharges section of the catalog.
Second Baccalaureate Degree (USFSM Transfer Students)
A student who has already graduated from an accredited four-year institution must earn a minimum of an additional thirty (30) semester hours of USFSM undergraduate courses to apply toward his/her second baccalaureate degree. Students must also meet the University’s regular graduation requirements, as well as the requirements of the college awarding the degree and the residency requirements.
Summer Enrollment Requirement
All students entering USFSM with fewer than sixty (60) hours of credit are required to earn at least nine (9) hours prior to graduation by attendance in one or more summer terms in courses offered by a USF System Institution or any one of the Florida State University System institutions.
The University may waive the application of this rule in cases of unusual hardship. A student who wishes to have the rule waived must complete a “Request for Waiver of Mandatory Summer Enrollment Form” available in the USFSM Office of the Records & Registration. After submission of the form to the Office of the Records & Registration, the student will be notified by email of the action taken.
Students may withdraw from the USF System without academic penalty for the first ten (10) weeks of any term, except for summer sessions, due to extenuating circumstances (ex. documented illness, family death, etc.) To withdraw, a student must submit a completed ARC petition for total withdrawal. No entry is made on the academic record for withdrawals submitted during the regular drop/add period (first 5 days of classes). All subsequent withdrawals (through the tenth week of classes in the fall and spring semesters) are posted to the academic record with “W” grades assigned to the courses.
Withdrawal deadlines for summer sessions are listed in the Academic Calendar and are published in the USF System Schedule of Classes for Summer Terms.
Undergraduate students who withdraw while on final academic probation will be academically dismissed from the USF System. When a student is academically dismissed, approval of the ARC is required for reentry.
Graduate Policies & Regulations
The University of South Florida System regulations provide information, services, and tools for locating, commenting on, challenging, promoting, and evaluating all USF System regulations. Regional campuses and separately accredited institutions may have unique characteristics. Students, faculty, and staff must check with their individual campuses and apply system-wide regulations in conjunction and consistent with the specific characteristics and guidelines applicable to those campuses. Regulations are required for matters subject to the Florida Board of Governors regulation development procedure.
All policies in the USF System are promulgated through the process established in USF System Policy 0-001: Issuance of Policies.
The USF System is currently comprised of three institutions separately accredited by SACS (USF Tampa, USF Sarasota-Manatee, and USF St. Petersburg). Each of the separately accredited institutions may initiate policy consistent with USF System policies, established laws, regulations and governance requirements. Each policy issued in the USF System must follow the established format.
Students may be academically dismissed from their graduate degree program for a variety of reasons. Once processed, the student’s status will be changed from Graduate Degree Seeking to Non-Degree Seeking. A change to Non-Degree Seeking status could adversely impact financial aid. Dismissal cannot be retroactive. The effective date will be entered into the student’s record by the USF System Office of the Registrar as the First Business Day after the end of the Semester, except in cases of academic dismissal due to academic dishonesty or disruption of academic process. Some of the reasons for academic dismissal include:
- Failure to successfully satisfy requirements to meet Conditional Admission by the deadline established by the program.
- Receiving an “FF” grade
- Failure to maintain “good standing”
- Failure to make satisfactory progress
To be readmitted, the student will need to reapply for admission, meeting the admission criteria in place at the time. Graduate students who are assigned an “FF” grade will be academically dismissed from the University and will not be eligible to apply to a graduate program at any USF System Institution.
Change of Graduate Degree Program Request
A Change of Graduate Program Request will NOT be considered for graduate students in their first semester of study. Only a continuing graduate student enrolled for study in a particular program who wishes to change to another program at the same or lower level may complete the Change of Program Request Application. It is up to the discretion of the student’s new program to determine if a Change of Program is appropriate and will be granted. Students may obtain the Change of Program Request Application on the USF Sarasota-Manatee website. This form must be signed both by the current program and the new program, after which it must be submitted to the college for approval. If approved by the college, the change of program form is then sent to Records and Registration for processing. NOTE: Some programs may require another application to be submitted because the Change of Program Request Form does not contain sufficient information for them to make a decision. Students should check with the College before completing any paperwork.
Students may, with the approval of their graduate degree program, transfer credits from any regionally accredited institution into their graduate degree program, as long as the majority of the credits are earned at the institution granting the degree. Credits obtained from USF System Institutions will be calculated into the GPA at USF Sarasota-Manatee and will be noted on the transcript as the grade earned. Credits from other regionally accredited universities are not calculated into the GPA at USF Sarasota-Manatee.
- Only credits with a grade of B or better may be transferred.
- Credit for coursework expires seven (7) years after receiving the credit.
- There is no time limitation for courses from a completed master’s degree or professional degree applied toward a doctoral degree.
- The graduate degree program / department will be responsible for evaluating, approving, and initiating the transfer as soon as possible at the time of admission.
Note – Students taking courses at USF System Institutions other than their home USF institution should seek the approval of their graduate program director prior to taking the courses to ensure that the courses are eligible for transfer.
Transfer of Credit Table
To Graduate Certificates
To Masters or Ed.S. Degree
|Graduate Courses taken as an undergraduate but not applied to completed undergraduate degrees (undergraduate courses may be accepted if in compliance with graduate minimum hours policy)||Discretion of the Graduate Degree Program, if taken at USF System. Up to one course if not taken at a USF System Institution.||Discretion of the Program if taken at USF. Up to 12 credits if not taken at USF System institution.|
|Graduate Courses applied to undergraduate degrees||None||None (Discretion of the Program for approved Accelerated Degree Programs)|
|Non-degree-Seeking Status||Up to one graduate course||Up to 12 graduate hours*|
|Certificate Coursework (Graduate Degree-Seeking Students)||Up to one graduate course (1 course may be applied to up to 2 certificates)||Up to 12 graduate hours*|
|Uncompleted Master’s or Ed.S. Degree||Discretion of the Graduate Degree Program, if taken at a USF System Institution. For transfers from non-USF Institutions, up to 49% of required credits may be transferred in at the discretion on the Graduate Degree of Certificate Program.|
|Completed Master’s or Ed.S. Degree||Specific course requirements in common across both degree programs may be waived with the substitution of other approved coursework at the discretion of the program.|
|Uncompleted Doctoral or completed Professional Degree||Discretion of the Program||Specific course requirements in common across both degree programs may be waived with the substitution of other approved coursework at the discretion of the program.|
|Completed Doctoral Degree||Courses from a completed doctoral Degree may not be transferred to a Graduate Certificate or a Master’s Program. For USF and non-USF System specific course requirements in common across both degree programs may be waived with the substitution of other approved coursework at the discretion of the program.|
*a maximum of twelve (12) credits can be transferred to a degree regardless of the source(s)
**Programs that wish to transfer credit from a completed doctoral program to a professional program must submit the proposal to the Graduate School for approval.
Academic Standards and Grades
In Good Standing
To be considered a student in good standing, graduate students must:
- Maintain an overall minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) in all courses taken as a graduate student, and
- Maintain an overall minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) in all courses taken in each of the student’s degree-seeking programs.
No grade of C- or below will be accepted toward a graduate degree. Students must meet the requirements to be in good standing to graduate. All “I” and “M” grades must be cleared for graduation to be certified. Students who fail to maintain good standing may be placed on probation or academically dismissed.
USF Sarasota-Manatee does not commit itself to offer all the courses, programs, and majors listed in this catalog unless there is sufficient demand to justify them. Some courses may be offered only in alternate semesters or years, or even less frequently if there is little demand.
For a listing of the most current USF System approved course descriptions refer to the Course Inventory Database.
Prior to clearance for the degree, candidates must perform satisfactorily on a comprehensive examination or an alternative method designated by the academic unit to measure student competency in the major area. Students must be enrolled for a minimum of two (2) hours of graduate credit during the semester when the comprehensive examination is attempted. If the exam is attempted between semesters, the student must be enrolled for a minimum of two (2) hours of graduate credit in the semester before or following the exam.
Cross-Listing 4000/6000 Courses
When courses are cross listed it is expected that the 4000 and 6000 courses will have distinct syllabi demonstrating different depth and breadth of the subject matter as reflected in the course requirements. The courses presuppose different audiences, and the intention is to offer them at distinct levels.
Graduate students must meet all of the requirements of USFSM graduate degree requirements, as specified in the USFSM Graduate Catalogs, as well as any College or Program degree requirements. Students must be in good standing to graduate. College and Program degree requirements are approved by USFSM Academic Program’s Committee. Each Catalog is published and in effect for the academic term(s) noted on the title page.
A student may drop a course(s) during the drop/add periods (first five days of classes) in order for the course(s) not to appear on any permanent academic records. No tuition or fees will be assessed for course(s) dropped within that period. Courses may not be dropped after the last day of classes except in cases of University Administrative error.
Dual Degree Programs
A student may wish to pursue two (2) degrees simultaneously. Upon approval by the appropriate College Dean(s) and Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs, a prescribed number of courses (generally no more than nine (9) hours of core or basic courses) required for one degree may be applied to another degree that requires the same courses, without repetition or alternative courses. Contact the College for procedures for applying for a Dual Degree program.
Enrollment during Semester of Graduation
Students must be enrolled for a minimum of two (2) graduate hours during the semester of graduation.
All graduate degree-seeking students must be continuously enrolled. Continuous enrollment is defined as completing, with grades assigned, a minimum of six (6) hours of graduate credit every three (3) continuous semesters. Colleges and programs may have additional requirements. Students on an approved leave of absence are not subject to the enrollment requirement for the time approved for the leave. See also the Time Limitation Policy.
Enrollment for Graduate Teaching and Research Assistants
Graduate Teaching and Research Assistants should be full-time students. Exceptions must be approved by the College Dean and the Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs.
Full-Time Graduate Student Definition
Graduate Students taking nine (9) or more hours toward their degree in the fall or spring semester, or taking six (6) or more hours in the summer semester, will be classified as Full-Time students for academic purposes. For financial aid requirements, contact the Office of Financial Aid.
Graduate Grading System
In this section...
Continuing Registration Grades (Z)
The “Z” grade shall be used to indicate continuing registration in multi-semester internship or thesis/dissertation courses where the final grade to be assigned will indicate the complete sequence of courses or satisfactory completion of the thesis/dissertation. Upon satisfactory completion of a multi-semester internship the final grade assigned will be an “S.”
Note: Graduation will not be certified until all courses have been satisfactorily completed. No grade changes will be processed after the student has graduated except in the case of university error. Procedures requiring petitions are processed through the college Dean’s office.
Grade Point Average (GPA)
The GPA is computed by dividing the total number of quality points by the total number of graded (A-F) hours completed. The total quality points are figured by multiplying the number of credits assigned to each course by the quality point value of the grade given. The GPA is truncated to two decimals (3.48) and is not rounded up.
Credit hours for courses with grades of I, IU, M, MU, N, S, U, Q and grades which are preceded by T (Transfer) are subtracted from the total hours attempted before the GPA is calculated. Graduate students are not eligible for grade forgiveness. All grades earned, regardless of course level, will be posted on the transcript. If a student retakes a course, both grades will be used in the determination of the GPA. Courses taken at USF as non-degree-seeking are not computed in the GPA unless the courses are transferred in and applied to the degree requirements. The program and the college must approve such actions.
Grades for transfer credits accepted toward the degree program will not be counted in the GPA unless the coursework in question was taken as a non-degree-seeking student at a USF System Institution and meets the requirements stated above (see Transfer of Credit section).
Definition: An Incomplete grade “I” is exceptional and granted at the instructor’s discretion only when students are unable to complete course requirements due to illness or other circumstances beyond their control. This applies to all gradable courses, including pass/fail (S/U).
Students may only be eligible for an “I” when:
- majority of the student’s work for a course has been completed before the end of the semester
- the work that has been completed must be qualitatively satisfactory
- the student has requested consideration for an “I” grade as soon as possible but no later than the last day of finals week.
The student must request consideration for an Incomplete grade and obtain an “I” Grade Contract from the instructor of record. Even though the student may meet the eligibility requirements for this grade, the course instructor retains the right to make the final decision on granting a student’s request for an Incomplete. The course instructor and student must complete and sign the “I” Grade Contract Form that describes the work to be completed, the date it is due, and the grade the student would earn factoring in a zero for all incomplete assignments. The due date can be negotiated and extended by student/instructor as long as it does not exceed one semester from the original date grades were due for that course.
The instructor must file a copy of the “I” Grade Contract in the college that offered the course by the date grades are due. The instructor must not require students to either re-register for the course or audit the course in order to complete the “I” grade. Students may register to audit the course, with the instructor’s approval, but cannot re-take the course for credit until the I grade is cleared.
An “I” grade not cleared within the next academic semester (including summer semester) will revert to the grade noted on the contract. “I” grades are not computed in the GPA, but the grade noted on the contract will be computed in the GPA, retroactive to the semester the course was taken, if the contract is not fulfilled by the specified date. When the final grade is assigned, if applicable, the student will be placed on academic probation or academically dismissed (refer to Automated Academic Probation Procedures for information). Students cannot be admitted to doctoral candidacy or certified for graduation with an “I” grade.
- student has a “B” in the course, not including the grade for the missing assignment, therefore is eligible for an “I”
- student’s grade, including a zero for the missed work, would be a “D”
- student and instructor complete the “I” Grade Contract, assigning an “ID” (Incomplete +”D” grade)
Deadline Agreed Upon in Contract (e.g. two weeks)*
If the student completes the work as agreed upon in the Contract by the noted deadline
- instructor submits a change of grade
- student earns final grade comprised of all completed coursework
If the student does not complete the work as agreed upon in the Contract by the noted deadline
- “I” automatically drops off and the grade of “D” remains.
- GPA is recalculated for the current semester and retroactively recalculated for the semester in which the “I” was granted.
*Although the instructor establishes the deadline for completion of the work, the deadline may only extend through the end of the subsequent semester.
An “M” grade is automatically assigned as a default grade when the instructor does not submit a grade for a student. Unless a change of grade is submitted, the “M” grade will remain on the transcript and will not be computed in the student’s GPA.
Effective fall semester 2000, graduate and undergraduate grades are assigned quality points in the Grade Point Average (GPA) grading system. The +/- designation must be included in the syllabus provided at the beginning of the course. The use of the +/- grading system is at the discretion of the instructor. The syllabus policy is available in the office of Academic Affairs.
Letter grade = number of grade points
|E||Course repeated, not included in GPA|
|IF||Incomplete grade changed to Failure|
|IU||Incomplete grade changed to Unsatisfactory|
|M||No grade submitted by instructor|
|W||Withdrawal from course without penalty|
|WC||Withdrawal for extenuating circumstances|
|Z||Indicates continuing registration|
*Incomplete grade policy change effective fall 08. IF grades earned and posted prior to fall 2008 do calculate in the GPA; IF grades earned as of fall 2008 forward do not calculate in the GPA Refer to Incomplete Grade Policy for more information.
Satisfactory (S)/ Unsatisfactory (U)
Graduate students may not take courses in the major on an S/U (satisfactory / unsatisfactory) basis unless courses are specifically designated S/U in the Catalog. Students may take courses outside of the major on a S/U basis with prior approval of the course professor, major professor or advisor, and the Dean of the College in which the student is seeking a degree. The student may apply a maximum of six (6) hours of such credit (excluding those courses for which S/U is designated in the Catalog) toward a master’s degree. Directed Research, Thesis, and Dissertation courses are designated as variable credit and are graded on an S/U basis only. Before a student begins work under Directed Research, a written agreement must be completed between the student and the professor concerned, setting forth in detail the requirements of the course.
Graduate students may not participate in commencement exercises until all requirements for the degree sought have been fulfilled.
Application for Degree and Graduation
To graduate, a student must submit the Master’s Degree Application online in their Oasis account. This application must be submitted in the term of expected graduation by the deadline noted in the academic calendar. If a student applies for graduation and is not approved, a new Application for Degree must be submitted by the deadline in a new term. In order for the degree statement to appear on a student’s academic record, the student must file the aforementioned application whether or not participation in the commencement ceremony is desired.
Inquiries concerning approval or denial of graduation should be made to the appropriate college. It is the student’s responsibility to clear all “I” (Incomplete) and “M” (Missing) grades in all courses and to provide official transcripts of all transferred coursework needed for graduation at least three (3) weeks prior to the end of the term in which the student expects to graduate.
Students in need of verification of the degree prior to receiving their diploma may request a Letter of Certification. This letter specifies that the student has finished all of the requirements for the degree and the date the degree will be conferred on. The letter must include the student’s identification number, name of degree program and official name of the degree. The College Dean (or designee) must sign the Letter of Certification.
The majority of credits toward a graduate degree must be earned through instruction offered by the institution (e.g. USF Tampa, USF St. Petersburg, USF Sarasota-Manatee) granting the degree. For information about the minimum number of credit hours required for the degree refer to the degree requirements in the program listing and the Transfer of Credit Policy.
Leaves of Absence (LOA)
Leaves of absence may be granted to students under exceptional and unavoidable circumstances. Students requesting a LOA must specify the reasons for the leave, as well as the duration. Requested LOA may be approved for up to two (2) years. Students requiring less than three (3) consecutive terms of absence do not need an approved LOA if they meet the continuous enrollment requirement.
Students with an approved LOA must be enrolled in the first semester after the leave expires. To request a LOA, the student must complete the Leave of Absence Request form. The LOA must be approved by the Professor, the College Dean and Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and is noted in the student’s record. If the LOA is granted, the time absent does not count against the student’s time limit to obtain the degree.
Students returning from an approved LOA must reactivate their status by contacting the Graduate Admission Office for procedures.
Major and Co-Major Professor
The Major Professor serves as the student’s advisor and mentor. Students should confer with the college to confirm the internal process and timeline for the selection and appointment of the Major Professor. The student must identify a major professor and receive that person’s agreement to serve as major professor. The selection of the Major Professor must be approved and appointed by the college dean as soon as possible, but no later than the time the student has completed 50% of the program. Students must have a major professor in order to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress. If a major professor cannot be identified or in the event a major professor is unable or unwilling to continue serving on the student’s committee, the student is responsible for finding another major professor. Students who are unable to find a replacement major professor should confer with the college dean for available options (including converting to a non-thesis program if available.) If no other options exist the student may be requested to voluntarily withdraw from the program or may be honorably withdrawn in good academic standing. The student and major professor should plan a program of study which, when completed, will satisfy the degree requirements specified. A copy of this program, signed by the student and professor, must be maintained in the student’s college file.
Major Professors must meet the following requirements:
- Be graduate faculty, as defined by the University. Faculty who do not meet this definition may serve as Co-Major Professor
- Be engaged in current and sustained scholarly, creative, or research activities and have met college (or equivalent) requirements
- Have been approved by the college (or equivalent) to serve as a Major Professor or Co-Major Professor.
The membership of graduate faculty will be based upon criteria developed within the appropriate program and approved at the college level. These criteria must be forwarded to the Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.
In the event a Major Professor leaves the University (i.e. for an appointment at another university, due to retirement, etc.) and the Major Professor is willing to continue serving on the student’s committee, the Major Professor then becomes a Co-Major Professor on the committee and another faculty is appointed as the other Co-Major Professor. It is important that one of the Co-Major Professors be accessible on the university campus for the student to make satisfactory progress on the thesis. In the event a Major Professor is on temporary leave (e.g. sabbatical, research, etc.); the Major Professor shall coordinate with the college dean to facilitate the needs of the student. In some instances a student may choose to have two professors serve as Major Professor. In this situation the faculty members are approved as “Co-Major Professors” and jointly serve in that role. Consequently both faculty must sign approval on paperwork pertaining to the student’s processing (i.e. committee form, change of committee form, etc.)
Appointment of a (Co)-Major Professor(s) may be rescinded by the college dean, with the approval of the appropriate college (or equivalent) faculty committee (separate from student advisory committee.)
Mandatory Attendance at First Class Meeting
All students are required to attend class the first day a class meets, for both online and on-campus courses. Students unable to attend must contact the instructor prior to the first day to ensure they are not dropped from the course. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty.
A minimum of thirty (30) graduate hours (5000 level and up) is required for a master’s degree, at least sixteen (16) hours of which must be at the 6000 level.
At least twenty (20) hours must be in formal, regularly scheduled course work (i.e. not directed research, independent study, internships, etc.), at least ten (10) of which must be at the 6000 level.
Undergraduate courses may not be used to satisfy the minimum thirty (30) hours in master’s course requirements but may be taken to meet specific prerequisites. All graduate and undergraduate courses taken as a graduate student count in the overall GPA, whether or not they count toward the minimum hours for the degree.
Graduate students may not enroll for more than eighteen (18) hours in any semester without written permission from the College Dean.
Off-Campus Courses and Programs
Graduate courses and programs are offered at locations other than the Tampa, Sarasota, and St. Petersburg campuses. Information on course enrollment procedures for off-campus courses and programs may be obtained from the College in which the courses or programs are offered.
Any student who is not in good standing at the end of a semester shall be considered on probation as of the following semester. The college may also place students on probation for other reasons as designated by the program. Notification of probation shall be made to the student in writing by the college, with a copy to the College Dean. At the end of each probationary semester, the department shall recommend, in writing, to the College Dean one of the following:
- Removal of probation
- Continued probation; OR
- Dismissal from the degree program.
Students with a GPA below 3.00 for two consecutive semesters will be prevented from registering for courses without the permission of the College Dean. The College Dean will notify the Regional Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs in cases of academic dismissal. To be readmitted, the student will need to reapply for admission, meeting the admission criteria in place at the time. For information contact your college dean’s office.
Program Degree Requirements
In order to graduate, students must meet all requirements specified in the USFSM Catalog of their choice, except as noted below. As the University is dynamic, changes and updates to the catalog are anticipated. In contract to program requirements, which are tied to a specific catalog, all students must comply with University policies and procedures that come into effect each catalog year.
- Students cannot choose a USFSM catalog published prior to admission (or readmission) or during an academic year in which they did not complete at least two terms. If a student is dropped from the system and must be reinstated, the student’s choice of catalog is limited to the USFSM catalog in effect at the time of readmission or any one catalog published during their continuous re-enrollment.
- If state law or certification requirements change, the student must comply with the most current standard or criteria.
- If the College makes fundamental changes to the program that necessitates changes in the degree requirements of enrolled students, the needs of those students will be explicitly addressed in the proposal for change and scrutinized by the Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs.
- USF System policies and procedures not related to degree requirements such as academic grievance procedures, student conduct code and other procedural processes and definitions may be updated each year and the student will be held to the most current catalog and procedures available.
- USFSM does not commit itself to offer all the courses, programs, and majors listed in this catalog. If the student cannot meet all of the graduation requirements specified in the catalog of choice as a result of decisions and changes made by the University, appropriate substitutions will be determined by the program to ensure that the student is not penalized.
Program of Study
It is recommended that the college establish a program of study for the student at the time of admission into the graduate program, outlining the requirements for the degree sought. In the event state mandates, accreditation requirements, etc., make changes to the degree requirements necessary, it is recommended that the program provide an addendum to the program of study outlining what is required for degree completion.
USFSM’s colleges and programs have establish certain academic requirements that must be met before a degree is granted. These requirements concern such things as curricula and courses, majors and minors, and academic residence. Faculty and graduate program directors are available to help the student understand and arrange to meet these requirements, but the student is responsible for fulfilling them. At the end of a student’s course of study, if all requirements for graduation have not been satisfied, the degree will not be granted. For this reason, it is important for students to acquaint themselves with all regulations and to remain currently informed throughout their college careers. Courses, programs, and requirements described in the USFSM catalog may be suspended, deleted, restricted, supplemented, or changed in any other manner at any time at the sole discretion of the University and the USF Board of Trustees.
It is the student’s responsibility to make sure that he/she has met all degree requirements as specified in the Degree Requirements section of this publication, as well as any College and Program requirements for the degree.
If a thesis is required, it must conform to the guidelines of the USF System.
Refer to the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation (ETD) Resource Center for complete information about requirements, procedures, and deadlines.
Refer to the enrollment requirements in the Academic Policies section in the Catalog.
Instructions with regards to formatting can be found at the following website.
Directed Research hours may satisfy up to 50% of the thesis hour requirement.
Manuscript Processing Fee
Students participating in the thesis process are required to pay a processing fee. More information is available on the Thesis and Dissertation website.
Exchange of Thesis for Non-Thesis Credit
If a student changes from thesis to non-thesis during a semester and is currently enrolled in thesis credit, the current thesis credits may be exchanged without academic penalty if a Graduate School Petition is filed with the Graduate School no later than the last day to withdraw without Academic Penalty. If a student enrolled in a thesis required program has taken thesis credits but elects to change to non-thesis track or program, the accumulated thesis credits may not be exchanged or converted to another non-structured credit. The thesis hours will remain on the transcript and will retain the “Z” grade.
Policies and procedures for the thesis defense are handled within the College and Program. Contact the College and Program for requirements.
Thesis Final Submission Guidelines
Information on requirements for submission of the finished and approved manuscript copies is available online at the (ETD) Resource Center website. Students who fail to submit the final copy of a thesis by the posted submission deadline will be considered for graduation in the following semester and must therefore apply for graduation by the posted deadline, enroll in a minimum of two (2) thesis hours for that subsequent semester, and meet the submission requirements as posted on the (ETD) Resource Center website. Only after the Graduate School has approved the manuscript can the student be certified for the degree.
Mandatory Electronic Submission
Students are required to submit the thesis in an electronic format (ETD). Requirements and procedures are available at the (ETD) Resource Center website.
Submission to Pro-Quest
All theses will be submitted to ProQuest for microfilming and archiving, effective Fall 2010.
Changes after Publication
Once a thesis is approved and accepted by the Graduate School for publication, it cannot be changed.
Release of Thesis Publications
The University recognizes the benefits from collaboration with sponsors on research projects but also recognizes the possibility of conflicts of interest in the disclosure of the results of the collaborations. While the sponsor’s economic interests in the restriction of disclosure should be considered, the University has a primary mission to extend knowledge and disseminate it to the public and the broader academic community. The University’s “Statement of Policy Regarding Inventions and Works” acknowledges the possible need for delays in publication of sponsored research to protect the sponsor’s interests, but it provides no definite guidelines for the restrictions of publication beyond the statement: “Disclosure delays mutually acceptable to the Inventor, the Vice President for Research, and the sponsor, if any, are authorized in order to allow patent applications to be filled prior to publication, thereby preserving patent rights…”
To protect the University’s primary goal from un-due compromise, the University has adopted the following guidelines:
- The recommendations of sponsors, regarding publication of research results should be considered advisory rather than mandatory.
- In support of academic discourse and the mission to promote and share academic works, Theses will be released for worldwide access once submitted to and approved by the USF System Graduate School. In the event that a patent or copyright application provides reason to delay the release of the Thesis, a petition to request a one year delay may be submitted to the Graduate School for consideration. Such requests must be received by the format check of the thesis.
- Students should not be delayed in the final defense of their theses by agreements involving publication delays.
Duty to Disclose New Inventions and Works
For information about the requirements of this policy contact the USF System Division of Patents and Licensing at (813) 974-0994.
Thesis Change of Grade
In the semester in which the final manuscript has been received, reviewed, and certified for permanent filing in the University Library, the Graduate School submits the change of grade from “Z” to “S” for the last registration of thesis courses to the USF System Office of the Registrar when all grades are due at the end of the semester.
 Deviations from the available format are acceptable if approved in advance by the Supervisory Committee and Graduate School
 Include either References or a Bibliography, as specified by your style guide
 Include either References or a Bibliography, as specified by your style guide
 April Burke, “University Policies on Conflict of Interest and Delay of Publications,” Report of the Clearinghouse on University-Industry Relations, Association of American Universities, February, 1985.
Students working toward a thesis degree will have the benefit of a committee of members of the graduate faculty. The committee will approve the course of study for the student and plan for research, supervise the research and any comprehensive qualifying exams, and read and approve the thesis for content and format.
The committee will consist of the major professor and at least two other members or co-major professors and at least one other member of the department or area of interest in which the degree is sought. (Colleges and Programs may require additional committee members and specify characteristics.)
All graduate faculty, as defined by the University and the College, and approved by their college, as qualified to be a member of and/or supervise a committee. Persons desiring to serve on a Graduate committee who are not defined as Graduate Faculty (i.e. visiting faculty, professionals, etc.) by the University and the College must submit a curriculum vitae and be approved by the College, and, as needed, the Regional Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs for each committee.
Committee members must meet the following requirements:
- Be graduate or affiliate graduate faculty, as defined by the University
- Have the background and expertise that contributes to the success of the student.
In addition to the requirements specified in the Graduate Faculty definition, committee membership will be based upon criteria developed within the appropriate program or department and approved at the college level. These criteria must be forwarded to the Dean of the College.
Once a committee has been determined, a Supervisory Committee Form needs to be completed by the student and submitted to the Committee Members for original signatures. Check with the College for instructions and forms. The original appointment form and two (2) copies should be submitted to the College Dean’s office for approval. A copy of the approved form should be kept in the student’s file. An approved and current Committee Form must be on file in the college before graduation may be certified. Committee forms need to be processed as early in the program as possible, but no later than the semester prior to graduation. (May institute additional requirements for membership on Supervisory Committees.)
Changes to Committee
Changes to a Supervisory Committee must be submitted on a Change of Committee Form. Check with the College for instructions and forms. Original signatures of faculty being added to the Committee, along with the approval signature of the (Co-) Major Professor(s), must be on the form. Faxed signatures are acceptable. Faculty who are removed from the Committee are not required to sign the form, provided that the (Co-) Major Professor(s) has signed. In such instances the signature of the (Co-)Major Professor(s) indicate(s) approval of the change, as well as acknowledgement and approval of the change by the removed member. Any non-faculty being added to a committee must submit a Curriculum Vitae (CV) for college approval. Change of Committee Forms should be submitted for approval as soon as the change takes place. Changes to a Committee are official only once approved and filed by the program and college.
Time Limit Extensions
In the event that a student nears the end of the time limitation as specified below, but the student needs more time to complete the degree, the student may submit a request for an extension using the Time Limit Extension Request Form. The requests must include the following:
- the reasons for the delay in completion,
- the anticipated time needed for completion,
- and endorsements from the graduate faculty advisor, College Dean or designee,
- a detailed plan of study and timeline for the remaining requirements for the degree
Note – for the time limit extension procedures, if the time limit extension will cause courses taken or transferred into the program to be older than seven (7) years, then a request for course concurrency may be required or the courses may be invalidated toward the degree requirements, per the time limit policy.
If approved, the time limit extension also applies to courses applied toward the degree. However, programs may require additional or repeat coursework as part of the condition of the time limit extension. Students who exceed the time limitations may have their registration placed on hold until a request for extension has been approved. Only one time limit extension request is permitted. Students who are temporarily unable to continue the program should submit a Leave of Absence Request, which extends the time limit for the duration of the approved leave (see the section on Leaves of Absence in the Enrollment Requirements section.)
Master’s degrees must be completed within five (5) years from the student’s date of admission for graduate study. Courses taken prior to admission to the USFSM graduate program, for example as non-degree seeking or from other institutions that were transferred in, can be no older than seven years at the time of graduation. Master’s degrees (including dual degree programs) that require coursework in excess of 50 credit hours may be granted a longer statute of limitations.
Students receiving Veterans’ Administration benefits should confirm their enrollment requirements with the Office of Veterans’ Services or Veterans’ Coordinator.
Voluntary Withdrawal from the Program
Students may voluntarily withdraw from their graduate degree program. A Voluntary Withdrawal cannot be retroactive. The effective date of the withdrawal will be entered into the student’s record by the USF System Office of the Registrar as the first business day after the end of the semester. Students who wish to withdraw must submit a Voluntary Withdrawal Form. Once processed, the student’s status will be changed from Graduate Degree Seeking to Non-Degree Seeking. A change to Non-Degree Seeking status could adversely impact financial aid. Questions regarding this should be directed to the Financial Aid Department at (941) 359-4622. The student will remain financially and academically responsible for any course(s) for which they have registered. The student may request to drop or delete courses they are registered for by submitting a Graduate Withdrawal Request Form.
A student may withdraw from a course(s) between the second and tenth week of the semester (except for summer sessions – see the Summer Schedule of Classes for dates and courses with alternative calendars), however, tuition and fees will be assessed for any course(s) withdrawn by the student after the first week. The student’s academic record will reflect a “W” grade for any course(s) withdrawal between the second and tenth week of the semester. Under specific conditions, consideration for refund of tuition and fees may be requested if a Fee Adjustment Request form accompanied by verifiable supporting documentation is submitted to the Office of the Registrar at USF Tampa within six (6) months from the end of the semester to which any refund would be applicable. Students who withdraw may not continue to attend classes.
Effective Fall 2016, all students will be limited to two (2) withdrawals from graduate courses while enrolled as degree-seeking or a non-degree seeking at USF. Requests for withdrawals from graduate level courses are submitted via the Withdrawal Request form. Only in extenuating circumstances will approval be granted for more than two graduate course withdrawals. Appeals for additional graduate course withdrawals due to extenuating circumstances must be submitted via the Graduate Petition Form.