This is an archived copy of the 2012-13 Catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit http://catalog.wvu.edu.

Academic Policies and Procedures

Page Contents:

Academic Integrity and Dishonesty

The academic development of students and the overall integrity of the institution are primary responsibilities of WVU. Academic dishonesty is condemned at all levels of life, indicating an inability to meet and face issues and creating an atmosphere of mistrust, disrespect, and insecurity. In addition, it is essential in an academic community that grades accurately reflect the attainment of the individual student. Faculty, students, and administrators have shared responsibilities in maintaining the academic integrity essential for the University to accomplish its mission.

For the detailed policy of West Virginia University regarding the definitions of acts considered to fall under academic dishonesty and possible ensuing sanctions, please see Board of Governors Policy 31 at bog.wvu.edu/policies and the Student Conduct Code at http://www.studentlife.wvu.edu/judicial.html . Note: The University is evaluating the process of academic dishonesty prosecution and appeal and students should contact the Office of Student Life/Student Judicial Affairs for current procedures at http://www.studentlife.wvu.edu/judicial.html .

Responsibilities

The integrity of the classes offered and research and scholarship undertaken by any academic institution solidifies the foundation of its mission and cannot be sacrificed to expediency, ignorance, or blatant fraud. Students should act to prevent opportunities for academic dishonesty to occur and in such a manner to discourage any type of academic dishonesty. Faculty members are expected to remove opportunities for cheating, whether related to test construction, test confidentiality, test administration, or test grading. This same professional care should be exercised with regard to oral and written reports, laboratory assignments, and grade books.

Deans and department chairpersons are expected to acquaint all faculty with expected professional behavior regarding academic integrity, and to continue to remind them of their responsibility. Deans and department chairpersons shall assist faculty members and students in handling first-offense cheating allegations at the lowest possible level in the University, and with discretion to prevent damage to the reputation of any person who has not been found guilty in the prescribed manner.

Each member of the teaching faculty and all other WVU employees, including but not limited to assistants, proctors, office personnel, custodians, and public safety officers, shall promptly report cases of academic dishonesty to the appropriate supervisor, department chairperson, or dean of the college or school concerned, and to the Office of Judicial Affairs, Office of Student Life.

Academic Dishonesty Defined

WVU expects that every member of its academic community shares the historic and traditional commitment to honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is defined to include, but is not limited to, any of the following:

1. Plagiarism is defined in terms of proscribed acts. Students are expected to understand that such practices constitute academic dishonesty regardless of motive. Those who deny deceitful intent, claim not to have known that the act constituted plagiarism, or maintain that what they did was inadvertent are nevertheless subject to penalties when plagiarism has been confirmed. Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to, submitting, without appropriate acknowledgment, a report, notebook, speech, outline, theme, thesis, dissertation, or other written, electronic, visual, or oral material that has been copied in whole or in part from the work of others, whether such source is published or not, including, but not limited to, another individual’s academic composition, compilation, or other product, or commercially prepared paper.

2. Cheating and dishonest practices in connection with examinations, papers, and projects, include, but are not limited to:

  1. Obtaining help from another student during examinations.
  2. Knowingly giving help to another student during examinations, taking an examination or doing academic work for another student, or providing one’s own work for another student to copy and submit as his or her own.
  3. The unauthorized use of notes, books, or other sources of information during examinations.
  4. Obtaining an examination or any part thereof without authorization.

3. Forgery, misrepresentation, or fraud includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Forging or altering, or causing to be altered, the record of any grade in a grade book or other educational record.
  2. Use of University documents or instruments of identification with intent to defraud.
  3. Presenting false data or intentionally misrepresenting one’s records for admission, registration, or withdrawal from the University or from a University course.
  4. Knowingly presenting false data or intentionally misrepresenting one’s records for personal gain.
  5. Knowingly furnishing the results of research projects or experiments for the inclusion in another’s work without proper citation.
  6. Knowingly furnishing false statements in any University academic proceeding.

Process to Initiate a Charge of Academic Dishonesty

To initiate and process a charge of academic dishonesty, including plagiarism, cheating, and academic fraud, and/or to begin the process of issuing an Unforgivable F, the instructor must do the following:

1. Notify the student in writing of the charge and the penalty and schedule a conference within five academic days of discovering the infraction. West Virginia University Under graduate Catalog

2. Meet with the student to discuss the issue, to review all relevant materials, and to complete the Notification of Academic Misconduct (NAM) form (http://facultysenate.wvu.edu ) as soon as possible but no longer than five academic days following the discovery of the violation.

3. Responsibility/Resolution

  1. If the student accepts responsibility for both the charge and the sanctions, he or she signs the NAM, and the case is closed. Within five academic days of resolution of the case, faculty should make three copies of the NAM form: one for the student, one for faculty records, and one for the Office of Student Judicial Affairs (84 Boreman North, P.O. Box 6430).
  2. If the student does not accept responsibility as charged, he or she may appeal to the chair of the department. If the student and chair reach a resolution, the chair should make three copies of the NAM form: one for the student, one for departmental records, and one for the Office of Student Judicial Affairs (84 Boreman North, P.O. Box 6430). These copies should be distributed within five academic days of resolution of the case.
  3. If the student and the chair do not reach a resolution, the student may appeal to the Student Conduct Board, which is comprised of members of the University Committee on Students Rights and Responsibilities. This appeal must be initiated within five academic days of the student’s meeting with the chair.

4. If the student appeals to the Student Conduct Board, a panel of three faculty and two students or any odd number with faculty comprising the majority will be convened, the case will be examined, and a decision will be reached.

5. If the student disagrees with the decision of the Student Conduct Board, he or she may appeal to the provost, whose decision is final.

Appeal Procedures for Cases Involving Academic Dishonesty

Academic dishonesty includes plagiarism, cheating, and dishonest practices in connection with examinations, papers, and projects, as well as forgery, misrepresentation, and fraud. Some cases of forgery, misrepresentation, or fraud that occur outside the context of courses or academic requirements may be referred directly to the Office of Student Life/Judicial Affairs by any member of the University community. In such cases, the Office of Student Life/Judicial Affairs will arrange a hearing following the procedures outlined in the BOG Policy 31.

An Unforgiveable F (UF) is a University sanction levied as a result of a violation of the Student Conduct Code Article III (B) 1. Thus, the appeal process for a UF as well as for other cases involving academic dishonesty is different than a standard grade appeal (see above), which follows academic channels that end with a decision by the dean of the college involved. This sanction can be given only after a student has gone through the University student conduct process.


Academic Leave of Absence

WVU offers undergraduate students in good standing, as defined by WVU’s uniform suspension policy and not subject to disciplinary action, the opportunity to request an academic leave of absence. The academic leave of absence is designed for the student who wishes to be away from his or her academic endeavors at WVU for one or more se­mesters, but intends to return at a later date. Leave of absence status must be requested before the beginning of the semester for which the leave is desired. The academic records of students on an academic leave of absence remain in an active status. While on an academic leave of absence, the student retains the right to use certain campus facilities such as the Study Skills Center and Career Services. When a student decides to return to WVU after his or her academic leave of absence, application fees are waived. An overall grade point average of 2.0 on all work attempted while on leave combined with the WVU grade point average is acceptable. While on an academic leave of absence, the student will receive communications from WVU.

Other leaves of absence, such as medical, bereavement, or military leave, may be granted during the semester. Please refer to the Office of the University Registrar’s website for more information.

Courses

Most courses taught at WVU extend for one semester, although some extend for two semesters. Credit is not awarded for a course if a student does not attend the whole course. The only exception to this rule occurs if the Committee on Academic Standards decides to grant an exception. Grades reported at the end of the first semester in a two-semester course are merely an indication of the quality of the student’s work to that point. Credit is not given for that part of the course completed. Courses taught in the summer sessions carry the same credit value as fall and spring semester courses.

Credit by Examination

A student who is currently enrolled may receive credit for a course or courses upon demonstration of competency in the course content at the discretion of the department. The department offering the course determines evaluation standards for the student’s competency. If skill and cognitive abilities are components of the course, then both are evaluated. Credit is given only when a satisfactory degree of competency is shown.

A college, school, or department may ask a student to prepare a self-evaluation statement. The purpose of the statement is to determine competency and the methods by which the student achieved it. Any student interested in credit by examination should contact the dean in the college or school offering the course.

Dissertation Procedures

Procedural rules for dissertations and theses are found in the WVU Graduate Catalog at http://coursecatalog.wvu.edu/ .

Eligibility to Enroll in 500-level Courses

Junior or Senior students who have at least a 3.0 cumulative grade point average may enroll in courses numbered 500-599 after they complete an Application for an Advanced Undergraduate Student to Enroll in a Course Numbered 500-599 for Undergraduate Credit and have signatures from the instructor, their advisor, and their academic dean. This form may be obtained from their advisor and must be completed prior to enrollment. Seniors wishing to count these courses for graduate credit must complete and have approved a senior petition. Non-WVU students will also be required to submit an undergraduate application for admission and have his or her official transcripts sent to the Office of Admissions from all of the colleges and universities previously attended; the transcript cannot be one sent to the student or by facsimile (fax).

 Graduate Credit via Senior Petition

A student may begin graduate study early through the University’s senior petition policy. A senior petition form may be obtained from the advisor/department and must be signed by the advisor and the dean of the college granting the student’s degree and the dean of the college of the intended graduate degree (if different). An individual from another West Virginia state higher education system school desiring to take a course at WVU must have the form signed by his or her advisor and the registrar. These signatures are necessary to certify that the information contained on the form is correct and that the student has a cumulative 3.0 grade point average. The University has certain policies for a student to enroll in a graduate course for graduate credit. The policies are:

  • Senior petition applies only to courses numbered 400–599. Student must be within 12 hours of receiving bachelor’s degree, and grade point average must be at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Student can receive only 12 graduate hours through the senior petition.
  • Student must have the proper signatures on the senior petition by the time of enrollment in the petitioned courses.
  • Return the approved senior petition to the Office of the University Registrar. It is kept on file so that the student receives graduate credit for these courses on the permanent record. The dean of the college or school in which the student is taking graduate courses must approve any exceptions to the policy.

Note: If you receive graduate credit for a course, the credit for that course does not count for your undergraduate degree

Evaluation of Student Progress

Progress is evaluated by a variety of methods. The measurement and evaluation of learning are consistent with the objectives of the course and provide the opportunity for the student and instructor to evaluate progress. The University discourages evaluation by final examination only. The student is responsible for all materials presented or assigned in scheduled instructional sections. Students who do not complete all assigned work may earn an incomplete (I) or a failing grade (F). A grade of incomplete (I) requires a written contract between the student and instructor and must include a timeline of no more than one semester.

  Experiential Learning

Each academic unit has a policy of general applicability controlling the allocation of credit for ad hoc experiential learning. No credit shall be granted for ad hoc experiential learning that is not sanctioned by an approved policy. At a minimum, each discipline shall adhere to accreditation standards of that discipline with respect to credits given toward student advancement based on experiential learning. There should be an equivalence in quantity and quality of ad hoc experiential learning effort and conventional academic effort for a set amount of credit within a discipline. Credit awarded for experiential learning will be posted as transfer work to West Virginia University with the course number of three zeros (000).  The course prefix will vary by department granting credit. Credits applied to a student’s record through experiential learning will count in degree (or earned) hours.  No formal grade will be entered.


West Virginia University Policy on the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 is a federal law that states that: (a) a written institutional policy must be established and (b) a statement of adopted procedures covering the privacy rights of students be made available. The law provides that the institution maintain the confidentiality of student educational records.

West Virginia University accords all the rights under the law to students who are declared independent. No one outside WVU shall have access to nor will WVU disclose any information from students’ educational records without the written consent of students, except to personnel within WVU and the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, persons or organizations providing students’ financial aid, accrediting agencies carrying out their accreditation function, persons in compliance with judicial order, organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of, education agencies or institutions for the purpose of developing, validating, or administering predictive testing student aid programs, and improving instruction, and persons in an emergency in order to protect the health or safety of students and/or other persons. All these exceptions are permitted under the act.

FERPA also permits disclosure of information from students’ educational records, without the written consent of students, to parents of a dependent student of such parents, as defined in Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, as amended. West Virginia University considers all students as “dependent” for purposes or disclosure of information to parents unless the students specifically notify in writing the Office of The University Registrar that they are not a dependent of their parents for federal income tax purposes. Students need to give such written notification only once.

The West Virginia University Policy on the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act explains in detail the procedures to be used for compliance with the provisions of the act. Copies of the policy can be found in the offices of all deans and directors. The offices of the deans and directors can inform students as to the locations of all education records maintained on students by West Virginia University.


Finals

The last week of each semester of the academic year is designated as finals week. Final examinations for the summer term are given on the last day of classes. The website http://registrar.wvu.edu/ gives the dates and times for final examinations. (See specific term Course Registration Information link for further information.)

Students who take a section of a multi-section course may be required to take the departmental final examination, given during the regular final examination period.

Last Week of Classes

Practical laboratory tests, make-up examinations, and regularly scheduled short quizzes are the only tests permitted for day classes during the week of classes preceding finals week unless the faculty member petitions the associate provost for Undergraduate Academic Affairs and the petition is approved by the beginning of the second week of the semester in which the final exam is to be given. Evening classes have their final exams on the last meeting of the class preceding finals week. 


Grading System

Grade Description
AExcellent (Given only to students of superior ability and attainment)
BGood (Given only to students who are well above average but not in the highest group.)
C Fair (Average for undergraduate students.)
DPoor but passing (Cannot be counted for graduate credit.)
FFailure
IIncomplete
WWithdrawal from a course before the date specified in the University calendar.
PPass (See Pass/Fail grading below.)
XAuditor, no grade and no credit.
CRCredit but no grade.
PRProgress; final grade to be issued at end of the second semester (HSC)
SSatisfactory
UUnsatisfactory (Equivalent to F.)
HHonors course (Professional school courses only.)
IFIncomplete grade not removed by next regular term (Computed as an F.)
UFUnforgivable F (Not eligible for D/F repeat policy.)

Note: Grades that are not reported by faculty at the end of a term will be designated with an NR on the official transcript. Grades that are not reported will become an F at the conclusion of the next semester if a final grade is not submitted.

Auditors

An auditor may register for courses and must pay full fees but does not receive credit for the course. A student who audits a course must let one semester pass before enrolling in the course for credit. A student may change his or her status from audit to grade or grade to audit only during the registration period. Attendance requirements for auditors are determined by the instructor of the course. The instructor may direct the Office of the University Registrar to remove an auditor from a class list or grade report if attendance requirements are not met.

Grade Points

Each letter grade has a numeric value. Grade points are based on this number value and the credit hour value of the course.

  • A- 4
  • B- 3
  • C- 2
  • D- 1
  • F- 0
  • I- 0
  • U-0

The grade point average is computed on all work for which a student registers, with the following exceptions:

  • Courses with a grade of W, P, S, and X carry no grade value. The grade of incomplete (I) initially carries no grade value.
  • The grade of I is given when the instructor of the course believes that the work is unavoidably incomplete or than an additional examination is justified. There must be a written contract between the student and instructor, including a timeline for completion of the of the work. To remove the grade of I, a student does not register for the course again; instead he or she arranges to submit incomplete or supplemental work to the original instructor of the course.
  • When a student receives the grade of I and the incomplete grade is later removed, the grade point average is calculated on the basis of the new grade. If the I grade is not removed within the next semester, the grade is treated as an F (failure). The Academic Standards Committee of the appropriate college or school may allow a student to postpone removal of the I grade if the student can justify a delay.

If a student is working toward teacher certification, he or she is responsible for every registration in a course in which the grade of A, B, C, D, F, P, X or I is received.

Grade Point Average

All academic units of the University have minimum standards of scholastic quality that must be met or exceeded. Grade point average (GPA) is computed on grades earned in courses taken at WVU and institutions in the West Virginia system of higher education only. To be eligible to receive a baccalaureate, a student must have a GPA of at least 2.0 at the time of graduation. Some degree programs require a higher grade point average overall or in the major courses. GPA is based on all work for which a student received a letter grade other than W, and P. See D/F Repeat Policy.

Students are responsible for knowing their grade point standing and can obtain the necessary information from their advisor or the dean of their college or school. GPA is determined according to the method described in the section on grade points.

GPA Calculation

  1. Students need to know how to calculate their overall and semester grade point averages. The following example shows how to do it. Assume you are registered for 16 hours and receive the following grades in these courses:
    1. English 101 – B
    2. Mathematics 126 - A
    3. Geology 101 - C
    4. Political Science 101 - B
    5. Spanish 101 - D
    6. Psychology 201 - P
  2. Course, Credits, Grade, Value, Credits x Value, Grade Points Earned
    1. English 101, 3, B, 3, 3 x 3 = 9
    2. Geology 101, 3, C, 2, 3 x 2 = 6
    3. Spanish 101, 3, D, 1, 3 x 1 = 3
    4. Mathematics 126, 3, A, 4, 3 x 4 =12
    5. Political Sci. 101, 3, B, 3, 3 x 3 = 9
    6. Psychology 201, 1, P, 0, 1 x 0 = 0
  3. Multiply the credit by the grade value to get the grade points earned for each course
  4. Add the total grade points, in this case, 39.
  5. Divide the total grade points earned by the total credit hours with a grade value. Remember that P grades have no grade value, so in this case, there are 15 credit hours for the GPA calculation: 39 divided by 15 = grade point average of 2.6.

Final Grade Appeal Procedures (Not Involving Charges of Academic Dishonesty), including Dismissal from an Academic Program

Students have the right to appeal final course grades which they believe reflect a capricious, arbitrary, or prejudiced academic evaluation, or reflect discrimination based on race, sex, age, handicap, veteran status, religion or creed, sexual orientation, color, or national origin. The grade appealed shall remain in effect until the appeal procedure is completed or the problem resolved. This procedure provides a mechanism whereby a student may appeal a failing grade or a grade low enough to cause the student to be dismissed from some program or to require the repetition of a course. Grade appeals that do not meet this classification are not precluded.

Step 1 - The student shall discuss the complaint with the instructor involved prior to the mid-semester of the succeeding regular semester, whether the student is enrolled or not. If the two parties are unable to resolve the matter satisfactorily, if the instructor is not available, or if the nature of the complaint makes discussion with the instructor inappropri­ate, the student shall notify the chairperson of the instructor’s department or division (or, if none, the dean). The chairperson or dean shall assume the role of an informal facilitator and assist in their resolution attempts. If the problem is not resolved within five academic days from when the complaint is first lodged, the student may proceed directly to Step 2.

Step 2 - The student must prepare and sign a document that states the facts consti­tuting the basis for the appeal within five academic days from when the original complaint was lodged. Copies of this document shall be given to the instructor and to the instructor’s chairperson (or, if none, to the dean). If, within five academic days of receipt of the student’s signed document, the chairperson does not resolve the problem to the satisfaction of the student, the student will forward the complaint to the instructor’s dean (see Step 3).

Step 3 - Within five academic days of receipt of the complaint, the instructor’s dean shall make a determination regarding the grade, making any recommendation for a grade change to the instructor involved. If the instructor involved does not act on the dean’s recommendation, or if the student disagrees with the decision of the dean, the dean will refer the case to a representative committee, appointed by the dean, for final resolution. This committee shall consist of three or more faculty members, including at least one person outside the instructor’s department.

  1.  Upon receiving an appeal, the committee will notify in writing the faculty member involved of the grade challenge, which shall include a statement of the facts and evidence to be presented by the student.
  2. The committee shall provide to the faculty member involved and the student making the appeal written notification of their right to appear at a hearing to be held before the department, college, or school representative committee, together with the notice of the date, time, and place of the hearing.
  3. The administrative procedure is not adversarial in nature; the formal rules of evidence do not apply.
  4. The final decision of this committee shall be forwarded to the instructor and to the dean involved. If the decision requires a change of grade, the instructor shall take action in accordance with the committee’s decision.
  5. If the instructor does not act within five academic days, the dean shall make any necessary grade adjustment.
  6. In the case of grade appeals, the dean functions as the president’s designee; therefore, implementation of this decision shall end the appeal procedure.

Pass/Fail Grading

Pass/fail grading encourages students to take elective courses not related to their degree concentrations. Pass/fail grading also facilitates grading in competency-based courses that may be an integral part of an academic program.

Any full-time student who has completed 15 hours or more and who has maintained a 2.0 grade point average may take a maximum of four hours each semester or summer term on a pass/fail basis. Any course taken on a pass/fail basis must be a free elective. Students are limited to a total of 18 hours of pass/fail credit in the collegiate career. Unless otherwise indicated, courses in the major, courses in other subjects that are required by the major, and courses taken to satisfy University, college, school, or departmental requirements are excluded from pass/fail. For example, courses elected to satisfy the General Education Curriculum (GEC) or foreign language requirements may not be taken for pass/fail grading.

A course taken on a pass/fail basis is graded as a graded course. The instructor turns in the appropriate letter grade to the Office of the University Registrar. This letter grade is then converted to a P on the basis of A, B, C, or D for a pass and F for a fail. The grade of P does not affect your grade point average. However, any F grade affects a student’s grade point average whether it is a regular grade or a pass/fail grade.

A student chooses the option of pass/fail grading for a course during the registration period. Once the registration period has ended, he or she may not change the grade status in the course.

A department or unit may designate any performance- or competency-based course as exclusively pass/fail. To institute this, the college or school must have the approval of the Faculty Senate. Courses offered only as pass/fail are not included in the maximum of 18 hours that may be freely elected as pass/fail under the student option.

Incompletes

The grade of I is given when the instructor believes that the coursework is unavoidably incomplete or that a supplementary examination is justifiable. Before any graduate degree can be awarded, the grade of I must be removed either by finishing the incomplete or by having it recorded as a permanent incomplete. Only the instructor who recorded the I or, if the instructor is no longer at WVU, the chairperson of the unit in which the course was given may initiate either of these actions. When a student receives a grade of incomplete and later removes that grade, the grade point average is recalculated on the basis of the new grade. If you do not remove the I grade within the next semester, the grade of I is treated as an F (failure). The Academic Standards Committee of the appropriate college or school may allow you to postpone removal of the I grade if you can justify a delay.

In the case of withdrawal from the University, a student with a grade of I should discuss that grade with the appropriate instructor.

Grade changes other than “I” to a letter grade must be accompanied by an explanatory memo.

Grade Reports

During the seventh week of classes in the fall and spring semesters, instructors submit a grade for all undergraduate students earning grades of D or F in undergraduate courses. These grades are used for counseling, are not recorded on the student’s official transcript, and disappear from the computer system after the semester is completed. These grades are sent first to the Office of the University Registrar and then to the student via MIX, the student’s advisor, and the dean of the college or school in which the student is enrolled.

Final grades are due to the Office of the University Registrar within 48 hours after the end of the University’s final examination and are viewable to students within one week of submission to the Office of the University Registrar.

At the end of each semester, grades are available through MIX.

Joint Graduate/Professional Programs

Any student who is in a professional program such as MD, DDS, JD, PharmD, etc. would be eligible to take graduate courses so long as the student meets normal requirements for admission to the course (e.g. course pre-requisites, appropriate major code if courses are limited to certain majors, etc.). 


Military Credit/Leave

Awarding Course Credit to Students Called to Serve in the Military (Updated July 28, 2010)

  1. Students who withdraw from the University for military service up to and including the 12th week of the semester will receive a full refund of their fees and be administratively withdrawn from their classes. No course grades or credit will be awarded.
  2. Students who leave the University for military service after the 12th week of the semester should work with the designated contact person in their home college (usually the academic associate/assistant dean). The student may also contact the Office of the University Registrar (304-293-5355). The contact person will assist the student in reviewing the student's eligibility for credit for their courses on a course-by course basis with the instructors.
  3. The contact person will work with the student's instructors to gather grade information for the student. If the course in not in the student's home college, the contact person can work with his/her counterpart in the appropriate college. Several outcomes are possible:
    1. If the course is substantially complete and the student has done passing work, the student should receive the grade earned at that time. It is anticipated that this would be the outcome in the majority of the courses. NOTE: Students who receive orders with suffcient advance notice are expected to notify their professors of their upcoming deployment date and meet with their professors to come to an agreement on what regular course assignments they can reasonably complete prior to the deployment date (the details of this arrangement should be included in a contract initialed by both the instructor and the student; contracts must be placed in the student's file.) Students should not be penalized for not completing assignments, quizes, test or exams due after their deployment date.
    2. If a critical competency has yet to be covered in a competency-based course, the instructor should award a grade of "I" and work with the student to develop a plan to complete that critical part of the course. To alleviate confusion at a later date, the plan should be in writing and signed by both the instructor and the student. Students called to active duty for a relatively short duration that includes exam week may arrange for an "I" with provision to make up the final exam after completing the period of duty.
    3. If the student choosed to withdrawl from the course. the contact person will work with the appropriate University Office to provide an administrative withdrawl.

Leave for Military Drill

Many students at West Virginia University choose to serve in the military while pursuing their degrees. West Virginia University is a "Veteran Friendly" institution and recognizes its obligations to our students who serve in the military. Although there is a university expectation that all students will attend all of their classes, the choice to serve in the military where two week training sessions may be mandatory should not negatively impede academic progress. The following section outlines the appropriate steps to follow should you miss class due to call ups for military service training during a semester. A typical call up is 1-2 weeks.

If you are a student with the potential for being called to military training during the course of the semester or academic year, we recommend that you review the syllabi for specific attendance policies for each course prior to the beginning of every semester. In addition, we strongly encourage you to meet with or have substantial email contact with all of your course professors and/or instructors no later than the Monday of the first week of class in order to address the class attendance policy and the impact a short-term military leave will have on your ability to succeed in the class for the semester. Any agreements between you and your professors should be agreed upon by the end of the first week of class. Share this information with your academic advisor so the appropriate notes are made in DegreeWorks.

In the rare case that an unresolved issue arises due to absences from a course because of military obligation, the West Virginia University process for final grade appeal is outlined under the "Final Grade Appeal Procedures" in the West Virginia University Undergraduate Catalog.

In the spirit of WVU, faculty make every effort to allow students who are members of the Armed forces to make up test and assignments that may be missed during the semester if it can be proven that the student was called up for military training; and if missing the coursework will not irreversibly impact the students' ability to master the subject matter in question within the terms of the semester.


 

Research Policy Guidelines

Research Involving Animals or Human Subjects

Any graduate student who conducts research with experiments using animals must have a protocol approved by the Animal Care and Use Committee before starting the research. Information about procedures and protocol forms may be obtained from the Office of Sponsored Programs.

Any graduate student who conducts research involving human subjects must have the approval of the Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Subjects before starting the research. Information about procedures and approval forms may be obtained from the Office of Sponsored Programs, 886 Chestnut Ridge Road, Morgantown, WV 26505-6845, (304) 293-3998.

Research Integrity at West Virginia University

Integrity in research and scholarship is an obligation of all who engage in the acquisition, application, and dissemination of knowledge. Research and scholarly work by West Virginia University faculty, staff, and students are governed by Policy and Procedures for Responding to Allegations of Misconduct in Research and Scholarship at West Virginia University. This policy can be found at osp.research.wvu.edu/policies_and_regulations/institutional_policies/misconduct .

All members of the University community are obligated to report observed, suspected, or apparent misconduct in research. Reports should be made to the University’s research integrity officer, WVU Office of Research (304) 293-2867. Regular reviews of the status of research integrity at WVU are conducted by the Research Integrity Policy Committee.

University Patent Policy

West Virginia University is committed to supporting faculty members and staff in all matters related to patents based on discoveries and inventions created solely or jointly by them. This policy encourages and aids research at the University, provides financial compensation and professional recognition to inventors, and protects and serves the public interest.

The University recognizes that discoveries and inventions may, and frequently do, include equities. The use of University facilities, equipment, personnel, supplies, or services, the particular assignment of duties or conditions of employment, the possible claims of a cooperating agency, as in research supported from extramural funds, and other situations may give rise to complex rights involving the inventor, the University, and a sponsoring agency. Such rights must be evaluated and an agreement reached on their appropriate disposition. Policies and procedures involving the rights and obligations of the University, its sponsors, and its inventors with respect to inventions resulting from research, development, or other work performed at the University are overseen by the Office of Technology Transfer and can be obtained at http://www.wvu.edu/~research/techtransfer/policy .

 

Summer Sessions

WVU has one summer term, which begins in the middle of May and ends the second week of August. Requirements for admission and work performance for the summer term are the same as for the regular semesters. Courses are offered in a variety of time frames, e.g., one-week, three-week, six-week, and 12-week.

A student may earn credit toward a baccalaureate, master’s, doctoral, or professional degree in the summer term. Summer offerings vary from year to year.


Visitors

Full-time University students may attend classes as visitors. To visit a class, the student must have permission in writing from his or her advisor and the instructor of the course. A member of the administration, teaching staff, or other regular University employees may attend classes as visitors. These individuals must have written permission from their department and the instructor of the class. A visitor does not receive credit for a class and may not apply for credit by exam in a class in which he or she was a visitor.


Withdrawal Policy

There are two types of withdrawals: withdrawal from individual courses for which a student has registered, and a complete withdrawal from the University. Deadlines for withdrawals for each semester are available at http://registrar.wvu.edu/current_students/withdrawal_policies . If students follow all established University procedures and withdraw before the published deadline, they will receive a W on their transcript. The grade point average is not affected in any way by this mark. If formal withdrawal procedures are not executed by the student, a failing grade/s will be recorded. It is the student’s responsibility to see that all forms are properly executed and delivered to the appropriate authorities for recording.

Withdrawal/Drop From Individual Classes

Students may drop individual classes within a term based on established deadlines. These deadlines are posted on the Office of the University Registrar’s website. Students, with the help of their academic advisors, are responsible for determining:

  • If their course load would be reduced below the minimum requirement set by their program
  • If their course load would be reduced below the minimum hours required to qualify for a graduate assistantship, financial aid, or international full-time student status
  • If the course to be dropped is a co-requisite for another course the student is taking or a prerequisite for a course required the following semester, the student may be required to drop the co-requisite course or asked to take a substitute course the following semester.

Withdrawal From All Classes for the Term

Students may withdraw from WVU for the term in which they are enrolled at anytime before the last day of classes of the term on which regular classes are scheduled to meet. Students will receive grades of W in all classes for that term.

Procedures

  1. To withdraw from all classes through the last day to drop a class with a W, a student would log on to their MIX account and drop their classes through STAR.
  2. To withdraw from the term after the last day to drop a class with a W, you may do any of the following:
    1. Visit the Office of the University Registrar.
    2. Send an e-mail from your MIX Account only to registrar@mail.wvu.edu . Please include:
      1. full name
      2. last four digits of your student identification number
      3. reason for your withdrawal
      4. address
      5. telephone number
    3. Mail a request to Office of University Registrar, West Virginia University, P.O. Box 6009, Morgantown, WV 26506. Please Include:
      1. full name
      2. student identification number
      3. reason for your withdrawal
      4. address
      5. telephone number
      6. signature
    4. Fax a request to (304) 293-8991. Please include:
      1. full name
      2. student identification number
      3. reason for your withdrawal
      4. address
      5. telephone number
      6. signature

Important Notice:  Financial aid recipients who withdraw from all classes before 60 percent of the term is completed may be required to return a portion of any financial aid that was received for the term. Students who do not receive at least one passing grade for classes in a term must provide documentation which verifies continued participation in educational activities. If documentation cannot be provided, those students are considered to have informally withdrawn from WVU prior to 60 percent of the term and may be required to return a portion of any financial aid which was received. This review and return of financial aid is done in accordance with federal regulations.

Re-Enrollment After Withdrawal

After a student withdraws from WVU in two consecutive semesters (excluding sum­mer sessions), a student may not register for further work without approval of the dean of the college or school in which the student wants to register, subject to conditions set by that dean. In the case of a general studies major, the student must seek approval from the director of the Undergraduate Advising Services Center.


Committee on Academic Standards

The Committee on Academic Standards of each college or school shall have authority to proceed according to its best judgment in regard to students referred to it for consideration. All orders of the committee shall become effective when approved by the dean of the college or school. In exercising its authority, the committee shall not suspend a student during a semester except for willful neglect and in cases where the student’s class grades are so low that further class attendance would be a waste of time. No suspension shall become effective until approved by the dean of the college or school.

HSC Appeal of Dismissal—Failure to Meet Academic Standards

The procedures and appeals described here do not apply to dismissal as a sanction for academic dishonesty. The time limitations stated herein are suggested in order to render a decision as expeditiously as possible. In the case of University holidays or absence of person(s) involved, reasonable delays may be expected.

A decision to dismiss a student for failure to meet academic standards (as distinguished from academic dishonesty) can be made only after the student has been counseled by the appropriate departmental committee or representative, with counseling to take place as soon as possible after discovery of the problem. After the student is given a reasonable opportunity to correct deficiencies, there shall then be a formal review of the student’s status by the appropriate departmental or program committee to determine whether the student shall be retained or dismissed. The student may provide the committee written documentation of his or her efforts to correct deficiencies.

A committee recommendation for dismissal, including any documentation provided by the student to the committee, shall be forwarded to the student’s dean and to the student. Within 15 calendar days of receipt of the committee’s recommendation, the dean shall inform the student and the student’s department or program of his or her decision. A decision to dismiss shall specify whether the dismissal is from the program or college or school. The dean may also dismiss a student from the institution if the student does not meet institutional standards.

Step 1

The student shall prepare and sign a document which states the facts constituting the basis for the appeal. A copy of this document must reach the dean within 30 calendar days of receipt of written notice of dismissal. The student shall be given an opportunity to discuss the appeal with the dean at any time in Step 1. If the matter is not resolved satisfactorily within 15 calendar days of the dean’s receipt of the student’s appeal, the student may proceed to Step 2.

Step 2

The student will forward a copy of the appeal to the appropriate vice president within 15 calendar days of failure to resolve the matter at the dean’s level. Prior to the decision of the vice president, the student will be given an opportunity to discuss the appeal with the vice president. The decision of the vice president, as the president’s designee, shall be rendered within 15 days of receipt of the student’s appeal and is final.

HSC Appeal of Dismissal—Failure to Meet Academic Requirements or Performance Standards

Dismissal, based on failure to meet academic requirements or performance standards irrespective of grades or grade point average, from, graduate programs, professional programs, and/or from the institution, may also be appealed. Students have the right to appeal academic dismissal based on requirements or standards other than grades or grade point average which they believe reflect capricious, arbitrary, or prejudiced academic evaluation, or reflect discrimination based on race or color, sex, sexual orientation, veteran status, religion, age, disability, national origin, creed, ancestry, or political affiliation.

Step 1

The student shall prepare and sign a document which states the facts constituting the basis for the appeal. A copy of this document must reach the dean within 30 calendar days of receipt of written notice of dismissal. The student shall be given an opportunity to discuss the appeal with the dean at any time in Step 1. If the matter is not resolved satisfactorily within 15 calendar days of the dean’s receipt of the student’s appeal, the student may proceed to Step 2.

Step 2

The student will forward a copy of the appeal to the University Committee on Student Rights and Responsibilities, which, within 15 calendar days of receipt of the student’s appeal, will arrange a hearing using the following procedures:

  • All parties involved shall receive written notice of date, time, and place of hearing.
  • The student may be advised by a person of his or her choice from the institution; likewise, the academic officer recommending academic dismissal may have an advisor from the institution. Such advisors may consult with but may not speak on behalf of their advisees or otherwise participate directly in the proceedings unless they are given specific permission by the University Committee on Student Rights and Responsibilities chairperson.
  • The administrative procedure is not adversarial in nature; the formal rules of evidence do not apply.
  • Witnesses may be called by any of the parties involved.
  • A record of the appeal shall be prepared in the form of summary minutes and relevant attachments and will be provided to any of the parties involved upon written request.

The University Committee on Student Rights and Responsibilities will reach a decision within seven days. The committee’s recommendation for dismissal must be reviewed by the appropriate vice president, who may confirm or remand the recommendation with specific instructions. Prior to the decision of the vice president, the student will be given an opportunity to discuss the appeal with the vice president. Within 15 calendar days of a recommendation for dismissal confirmed by the vice president, the student may appeal to the president. The decision of the president is final.

Dismissal

Dismissal from a graduate or professional program may be based on program and/or professional performance standards other than cumulative grade point average. Reasons must be based on catalog and other written documents describing academic and professional performance standards and expectations.

Procedures

  • Counseling by departmental committee or representative as soon as possible after discovery of problem.
  • Second counseling by departmental committee or representative after opportunity to improve if performance is not changed sufficiently.
  • Formal review of student status by department or program committee. The formal review will result in one of the following actions:
  • Student retained or recommended for dismissal.
  • Counseling or remediation required as a condition of retention.
  • Appeals available if dismissal recommended.
  • A dismissal decision by the dean of the student’s school or college may be appealed to the University conduct/appeals committee which will hold a hearing using the following procedures:
  • The student may be advised by a person of his or her choice to assure due process protection not to affect the outcome of the proceedings. The advisor may consult with the student but shall not speak on behalf of the student or participate directly unless granted specific permission by the University conduct/appeals committee.
  • The formal rules of evidence do not apply.
  • The administrative procedure is not adversarial in nature.
  • Witnesses may be presented and examined under oath.
  • An accurate record of the procedure is to be kept. The student may request a transcript of the proceedings at the student’s expense.
  • An academic appeals committee has the right to counsel in those proceedings in which the student has retained counsel. Such counsel may not speak on behalf of the institution or otherwise participate directly in the proceedings.
  • A decision for dismissal must be reviewed by the appropriate academic vice president who may confirm or remand the recommendation with specific instructions.
  • Recommendation for dismissal confirmed by the appropriate academic vice president may be appealed to the president. The decision of the president is final.

Absences

Class attendance contributes significantly to academic success. Students who attend classes regularly tend to earn higher grades and have higher passing rates in courses. Excessive absences may jeopardize students’ grades or even their ability to continue their courses.

Attendance Policies Instructors must set attendance policies that are appropriate for the goals and instructional strategies of their courses. Instructors may include attendance records in determining the final course grade. All attendance policies that affect students’ grades must be announced in writing within the first week of class. Moreover, instructors are responsible for keeping accurate enrollment records, and for keeping accurate attendance records when attendance is used in grading. Attendance policies thought to violate the statement on student attendance should be discussed with the instructor, then with the department chair, and finally the college dean, if necessary.

Class Absences Students who are absent from class for any reason are responsible for all missed work and for contacting their instructors promptly, unless the instructors’ policies require otherwise. However, instructors cannot require documentation of student illness from any medical provider as part of an attendance, since medical conditions are confidential and frequently not verifiable.

Make-Up Examinations Students absent from regularly scheduled examinations because of authorized University activities will have the opportunity to take them at an alternate time. Such make-up examinations should be of comparable difficulty to the original examination.

Students in courses with regularly scheduled evening examinations shall have the opportunity to make up these examinations if they miss them in order to attend a regularly scheduled class that meets at the same time. Such make-up examinations should be of comparable difficulty to the original examination.

Attendance at a regularly scheduled evening examination will not excuse a student from a regularly scheduled class that meets at the same time as the examination.

Days of Special Concern Instructors are urged not to schedule examinations or field trips on “days of special concern” that are identified in the Schedule of Courses.

Time Limitations

All requirements for a master’s degree must be completed within eight years preceding the student’s graduation. All students pursuing an M.S. degree in the MAE department are required to engage in research, and complete and defend successfully an M.S. thesis. They should identify a subject for their M.S. thesis research, form a three-member Advisory and Ex­amining Committee, and file a plan of study by the end of their second semester of enrollment in the graduate program. A minimum of 24 credit hours of coursework and six credit hours of M.S. thesis research is required for the M.S. degree. Students must pass a final examination administered by their Advisory and Examining Committee before being certified for the degree.