Graduate Academic Policies

Academic Standing

Academic Credits

The unit of academic credit at Cazenovia College is the semester credit. A semester credit is a unit of measurement that represents an hour of instruction that can be applied to the total number of hours needed for completing the requirements of a master's degree or a graduate certificate or diploma.  The College uses the Carnegie formula for semester credit-hour reporting. The Carnegie formula states that one (1) semester credit hour per 15 week semester equals 15 contact hours plus 30 hours of outside study and preparation.  Cazenovia College certifies to the state of New York that each semester credit awarded meets or exceeds the minimum amount of instructional time required.

Academic Course Load

Full-time students are allowed to take between 12 and 18 credits per umbrella semester, fall and spring, for the set tuition rate. An umbrella semester is considered to include both session one and session two for the particular semester. Students must take a minimum of 12 credits to qualify for full-time status; however, it is recommended that students follow the suggested path outlined for their program in order to graduate on time. 

Students receiving financial aid must maintain a minimum of half-time status at all times in order to remain eligible for loans. See the Financial Aid section for more information on financial aid and credits.

Students must be enrolled full time, maintaining at least 12 credits, in order to live in the College residence halls. Students dropping below 12 credits during an umbrella semester forfeit their right to live in the residence halls. Special consideration may be given in consultation with the Dean for Student Life/Program Director.

Class Standing

Student class standing is at the graduate level. All students in graduate programs have already completed their bachelors program and any necessary prerequisites from the undergraduate level. The academic level for courses may be recognized by the following:

Undergraduate Courses: 000-499

Graduate Courses: 500-699

Grades

Students receive a letter grade in each course taken.

In most courses, grades of "A" (outstanding), "B" (superior), "C" (satisfactory), "D" (deficient) or "F" (failing) are given. An instructor may add a plus or minus to indicate a student's relative position. (There are no "A+" or "D-" grades.) An "I" indicates that the student will not receive a grade until the work is completed within a specified time period. "W" indicates withdrawal from a course and is not calculated into grade point averages.

Letter grades are assigned numerical quality points for the purpose of determining a student's grade point average.

A   4.0
A-  3.7
B+  3.3
B   3.0
B-  2.7
C+  2.3
C   2.0
C-  1.7
D+  1.3
D   1.0
F   0.0
I   0.0
W   0.0

 

These quality points are multiplied by the number of credits a course carries to determine the student's total quality points.  A three-credit course, for example, in which a student earns a grade of "C+", earns 6.9 quality points. The grade point average is then determined by dividing the total number of quality points earned in all the courses by the total number of credits attempted.

Note: Incomplete grades are not calculated into the GPA, when the course is re-graded the GPA will be recalculated.

Grading Standards

Faculty has primary responsibility for assigning grades that the students earn. Grades represent an instructor's impartial, professional evaluation of a student's work on a given assignment or in a given course.

At the outset of any course, the students will receive, in writing, a clear statement of the course requirements and grading standards.

Incomplete Grades

When a student is prevented from completing the work of a course within the regularly scheduled term because of circumstances beyond his or her control, an "I" (incomplete) grade may be awarded. It is encouraged that the instructor document to the student the scope of the missing work and any deadlines pertaining thereto. The instructor may give an extension of up to six weeks in the following term. If the student fails to complete the missing work by the end of this extension period, a grade of "F" is automatically recorded.

Grade Reports

At the end of each semester, a report of final grades will be available electronically through the College's intranet system.  Students will be notified about the date of availability by the Enrollment Services Center.

Good Academic Standing

In order to be in good academic standing students must maintain a 3.0 or higher grade point average.

Grade Change

An instructor may choose to submit a grade change after the grade has been submitted to the Registrar. If the grade is changed within 30 days of the date grades are due, the instructor may send the grade change directly to the Registrar. If the grade change is more than 30 days from when grades were due, the instructor must seek the approval from the Dean of the Faculty with the exception of incomplete grades.

Academic Dismissal

Students are subject to dismissal if they fall below the satisfactory academic progress standards. If, at the end of each semester, a student's grades fall below this minimum standard, he or she will be subject to dismissal and will receive a letter from the vice president for Academic Affairs informing him or her of their status.  Students will be subject to dismissal if their minimum cumulative grade point average falls below a 3.0.

NOTE: Students may lose eligibility for federal or state financial aid programs if their minimum cumulative grade point average falls below 3.0.

Dismissed students may be readmitted to the College in the subsequent term by reapplying to the graduate program.

Students not readmitted through the graduate application process may appeal their dismissal based on extraordinary circumstances, which include major medical issues or extended leaves from campus. Appeals are reviewed by the vice president for Academic Affairs. Appealing students will be informed of their status by the College.

Graduation

Only students who have successfully completed all program requirements, including necessary academic credit hours and internships/practicums, and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or greater by the day that final grades are due will be permitted to graduate.  Programs may require that specific courses be earned through Cazenovia College.

The graduation requirements of the College, as published in the catalog in effect at the time of the student's initial enrollment, are those that must be met for completion of a degree program, assuming that the student is continuously enrolled until graduation. In the event that program requirements are amended during the student's enrollment, the student has the option of completing the requirements for either the original or the amended program.

Cazenovia College recognizes academic degree completion for the graduate program three times a year: the May Commencement date, August 31, and December 31. We will allow students who are near the completion of their degree to walk at the May Commencement Ceremony. In order to qualify, a student must document that they can complete their required courses by the end of the summer session and provide an academic plan that has been approved by their advisor, by the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Registrar. The plan must include no more than 12 credits hours that are to be finished the summer semester following the May Commencement Ceremony. Once all degree requirements have been satisfied, the College will provide the student with an official academic transcript that indicates a May, August or December completion date. Cazenovia College confers graduate academic degrees once per year. Diplomas will be mailed during the fall. 

Leave of Absence/Re-admittance

Students who need to cease enrollment or utilize a leave of absence for any reason would need to contact the graduate coordinator to apply for a leave of absence. Due to the size restraint of cohorts, the semester of re-entry cannot be guaranteed.

Privacy Rights

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

  1. The right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the Cazenovia College receives a request for access.  Students should submit requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The College official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the records are not maintained by the College official to whom the request was submitted, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  2. The right to request the amendment of the student's education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading.  Students may ask Cazenovia College to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the College official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If Cazenovia College decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the College will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  3. The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.  One exception, which permits disclosure without consent, is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the College has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent, or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks). A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
  4. The Act applies only to "educational records" and does not include records maintained by Alumni Association or published directory information. Such "directory information" includes name, hometown, state, previous educational agencies or institutions attended, enrollment data, major, degree, and year of graduation, awards and degrees received, participation in officially recognized activities and photographs. Students who want this information withheld must annually notify the Records Office in writing within the first week of classes.
  5. The right to file a complaint with the US Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the College to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and office that administrates FERPA is:
    Family Compliance Policy Office
    US Department of Education
    400 Maryland Ave, SW
    Washington DC, 20202-8520
  6. Students desiring further information or wishing to waive their right to privacy by naming authorized persons should contact the Enrollment Services Center.  In order to authorize persons, students must complete the form found below.

Click What is FERPA? to discover more information. Student Release of Information Form: View PDF

Registration Procedures

Student Registration Procedures

Students attending Cazenovia College for the first time must have their final official college transcript(s) on file in the Graduate Programs Office as soon as they are available and no later than the start of their first semester.

New students are registered for classes by the graduate program coordinator after they have deposited with the College and after February 1st.

Returning Student Registration Procedure

Continuing students are registered for classes by the graduate program coordinator during the spring for the fall and summer semesters and during the fall for the winter, spring semesters. Students must be in good academic and financial standing with the College in order to be registered.

Audit

A student might wish to audit a course out of a desire for personal enrichment, or to review a course previously completed in high school or at another college.

The vice president for Academic Affairs may grant a student permission to audit a course. Approval to audit a course is subject to capacity of that course. As an auditor, the student has the right to attend classes and participate in all of the activities of the class; there is no obligation to fulfill course requirements or to take examinations. Neither a grade nor credit is given for the course. (See Financial Services section for costs.)

Change in Classes (Drop/Add Procedures)

Prior approval from the program director is required for any change in classes for the graduate program. After registration but before the end of the Drop/Add period, an advisor's approval must be obtained in order to add or drop a course or to change from one course to another. This can be completed using the College's Student Planning system. A course dropped during the drop/add period will not appear on student records. 

Add/Drop Period

Normally, the first six business days of the semester are used for add/drop where a student can add or drop any class without academic or financial penalty.  Please check the academic calendar for the dates of the add/drop period.

Course Withdrawal

A student who withdraws after the Drop/Add period will have the enrollment and withdrawal entered on the transcript together with the notation "W". Course withdrawals are ordinarily not permitted after the posted withdrawal deadline. For courses that are less than a full semester, please be sure to consult with Enrollment Services for a withdrawal deadline.  A student who stops attending without officially withdrawing will receive an "F" for the course. (See academic involuntary withdrawal policy.)

Transcripts

Transcripts of grades are furnished to the student free of charge while in attendance at Cazenovia College. A fee for each transcript will be charged to all former students. Payment must be received with each request. All requests for transcripts must be made in writing to the Enrollment Services Center. Transcripts will not be issued to any party without the written permission of the student. All financial obligations to Cazenovia College must be satisfied before a student or graduate will be issued a transcript.

For more information and specific steps on requesting transcripts please visit  this page.

For information and specific steps on requesting the removal a transcript notation please download instructions (PDF). 

Withdrawal from the College

All students wishing to withdraw from the College and remain in good standing must go through a formal withdrawal process which must be initiated before the end of the final exam period. This process begins with an exit interview in the Enrollment Services Center. Residential students must also meet with a representative from the Office of Residence Life. The withdrawal process concludes with completion of a withdrawal survey and final withdrawal at the Enrollment Services Center.

Students who withdraw for the semester after the midpoint of the term receive a grade of "W" in all courses. Any student who wants to return must complete the graduate admissions process again. Due to the size restraint of cohorts, this ensures that there is space available within the cohort that the student would be restarting the program with.

Academic Appeal of Grade

The purpose of the Grade Appeal Policy is to provide the student with a safeguard against receiving an unfair final grade, while respecting the academic responsibility of the instructor. Thus, this procedure recognizes that,

  • Every student has a right to receive a grade assigned upon a fair evaluation that is not arbitrary, prejudiced or based on error; and,
  • Instructors have the right to assign a grade based on any method that is professionally acceptable, submitted in writing to all students, and applied equally.

Instructors have the responsibility to provide careful evaluation and timely assignment of appropriate grades. Course grading methods should be explained in a written syllabus to students at the beginning of the term and supplemented as necessary by written directions for specific assignments and projects. Cazenovia College presumes that the judgment of the instructor of record is authoritative and the final grades assigned are correct.

A student has a right to expect a thoughtful and clearly defined approach to grading, but it must be recognized that varied standards and individual approaches to grading are valid. The grade appeal considers whether a grade was determined in a fair and appropriate manner; it does not attempt to grade or re-grade individual assignments or projects. It is incumbent on the student to substantiate the claim that his or her final grade represents unfair treatment, compared to the standard applied to other students. Only the final course grade may be appealed. In the absence of compelling reasons, such as error, prejudice, or arbitrariness, the grade assigned by the instructor of record is to be considered final.

In a grade appeal, only arbitrariness, prejudice, and/or error will be considered as legitimate grounds for an appeal.

  • Arbitrariness: The grade awarded represents such a substantial departure from accepted academic norms as to demonstrate that the instructor did not actually exercise professional judgment.
  • Prejudice: The grade awarded was motivated by ill will, and is not indicative of the student's academic performance.
  • Error: The instructor made a mistake in fact.

A grade appeal shall be confined to charges of arbitrariness, prejudice or error affecting an individual student and may not involve a challenge of an instructor's grading standard. It would be unethical to change a grade for any reason not related to quality of the student's academic work. Grades cannot be appealed simply to receive or maintain a scholarship, fellowship, or any other monetary award or recognition of distinction.

This Grade Appeal Procedure applies only when a student initiates a grade appeal and not when the instructor decides to change a grade on his or her own initiative. This procedure does not cover instances in which students have been assigned grades based on academic dishonesty or academic misconduct, which are included in Cazenovia College's Academic Honesty Policy.

The Grade Appeal Procedure strives to resolve a disagreement between student and instructor concerning the assignment of a grade in a collegial manner. The intent is to provide a mechanism for the informal discussion of differences of opinion, and for the formal adjudication by faculty only when necessary. In all instances, students who believe that an appropriate grade has not been assigned must first seek to resolve the matter informally with the instructor of record. If the matter cannot be resolved informally, the student must present his or her case in a timely fashion in the procedure outlined below.

Under normal circumstances, the student must initiate the grade appeal process within 30 days of the end of the academic term in which the disputed grade was received. If the college representative, at any step, fails to review and/or respond within the time limits provided, the student may proceed to the next step. If the student fails to respond within the time limits provided, the appeal shall be deemed to have been withdrawn.

Grade appeals will be reviewed in the following manner.

Step One. An informal discussion will be held between the student and instructor of the course.  This discussion should review the grading standards for the course as well as how the student's course work was evaluated using those standards.  If the student is not satisfied with the informal response provided by the instructor, he/she may proceed to Step Two.

Step Two. A written petition will be submitted by the student to the instructor of the class. This petition should include an account of the nature of the problem, relevant information which supports the appeal, and the remedy sought. The student should retain a copy for his/her records. Within two weeks, the instructor will respond to the student in writing. If the student is not satisfied with the response provided by the instructor, he/she may proceed to Step Three. In cases where the Division Chair is the faculty member whose grade is being appealed, the student shall proceed to Step Three.

Step Three. If a student wishes to proceed to this step, its initiation must begin within 3 business days of the completion of Step Two.  A written petition will be submitted by the student to the appropriate Division Chair with a copy to the instructor. This petition should include an account of the nature of the problem, a statement that an attempt was made to resolve this issue directly with the instructor, relevant information which supports the appeal, and the remedy sought. The student should retain a copy for his/her records. The Division Chair may solicit additional information from the faculty prior to convening a College Grade Appeals Committee, consisting of the Division Chair, the Program Director and one other faculty member, which shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Division Chair. The manner of appointment and number of members on the College Grade Appeals Committee shall be determined by the Division Chair. The Division Chair will serve as the chairperson of the College Grade Appeals Committee. Within two weeks, the Division Chair will respond to the student in writing, the results of the College Grade Appeals Committee's response, with a copy to the instructor of the class. If the student is not satisfied with the response provided by the Division Chair, he/she may proceed to Step Four.

Step Four.  If a student wishes to proceed to this step, its initiation must begin within 3 business days of the completion of Step Three.  A written petition will be submitted by the student to the Vice President for Academic Affairs with copies to the Division Chair and instructor of the class. This petition should include an account of the nature of the problem, a statement that an attempt was made to resolve this issue directly with both the instructor and the Division Chair, all relevant information which supports the appeal, and the remedy sought. The student should retain a copy for his/her records. Copies of all materials presented in this matter shall be forwarded to the Vice President, upon request, by the Division Chair. The decision of the Vice President for Academic Affairs shall be communicated in writing to the student with copies to the instructor and Division Chair. This decision is final.

Academic Honesty

Academic success calls for strenuous individual and group efforts to progress intellectually. The academic measure of a college career is in the level of knowledge, skills, and intellectual maturity achieved during completion of a degree program. One of the most important aspects of a successful college experience is maintaining academic honesty and integrity. College faculty and the Office of Academic Affairs are responsible for maintaining standards of academic honesty.

Cazenovia College expects students to maintain their commitment to academic honesty. Students are held responsible for acts such as plagiarism, cheating on assignments, or other forms of academic dishonesty, including, but not limited to:

  • Copying from an unauthorized reference [e.g. textbook, notes, another student's paper] during a closed-book examination.
  • Representing all or portions of the work of another person [e.g. student, scholar, television commentator, etc.] as your own.
  • Representing the printed words or ideas of another [e.g. student, scholar, television commentator, etc.] as your own.
  • Stealing or defacing the College's books, magazines, art work, material related to computers, etc.
  • Stealing or making unauthorized [i.e. beyond the bounds of 'fair use'] copies of texts, recordings, software, etc. protected by copyright.
  • Buying examinations, papers, lab reports, projects, art works, etc. [whatever the supply source] that you represent or submit as your own.
  • Selling or providing examinations, papers, lab reports, projects, art works, etc. [whatever the supply source] for others to represent or submit as their own.
  • Submitting, without previous knowledge and specific permission of the receiving instructor, material for which you have already received a grade or credit in another course.
  • Representing fabricated data or evidence as the consequence of your own legitimate observation or study.
  • Misrepresenting, orally or in writing, the nature and scope of an internship.
  • Misrepresenting, orally or in writing, the extent of your personal involvement or participation in an internship.
  • Aiding another student in an act of academic dishonesty.
  • Failing to cite sources.
  • Unauthorized use of technology during or for an assignment, project, quiz, test or other assigned work.

Academic Dishonesty Sanctions

General Policy

In all instances of academic dishonesty, the Vice President for Academic Affairs or his/her designate will notify a student that a faculty member has reported an offense. The instructor will send a memo to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, copied to the student, documenting the incident and including the evidence of academic dishonesty. This memo and any additional documentation will be placed in the student's permanent file in the Registrar's Office.

Within ten business days, the Office of Academic Affairs will send a letter to the student formally documenting the offense and outlining the policy on Academic Honesty, including the penalties described below. The student may place a letter in his/her file responding to the charge. In addition, the student may request a meeting with the Committee on Academic Honesty to appeal the finding. This request must be made within ten business days of the receipt of the memo from the Vice President for Academic Affairs.

If the student declines to appeal, the Vice President for Academic Affairs will impose the appropriate penalty. If the student chooses to appeal, the Committee on Academic Honesty will hear the appeal and make recommendations to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. In either case, the Vice President for Academic Affairs will notify the student about resulting sanctions. Penalties for academic dishonesty become more severe if repeated. Failure of the student to complete the sanction[s] will result in additional sanction[s] to be determined by the Vice President for Academic Affairs or his/her designate. These additional sanction[s] may include failure of the involved class.

Penalties for Acts of Academic Dishonesty

First Offense - A student who has a first offense of academic dishonesty will receive an "F" on the essay, quiz, paper, or project in question. The student will also be required to attend a session on academic dishonesty in the Academic Learning Center. Additional sanctions, such as tutoring sessions or community service, may also be assigned to the student.

Second Offense - The sanction for a second offense is failure of the course involved as well as expulsion from the college.

Academic Involuntary Withdrawal from a Course or Cazenovia College

Students enrolled at the College may voluntarily withdraw from a course before the published official withdrawal date; students may withdraw from the College before the last day of class for the semester. However, the College reserves the right to involuntarily withdraw the student from a course or Cazenovia College in order to protect the integrity of the College's learning environment when the student is not able or willing to withdraw from courses.

Any involuntary withdrawal will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

The following explanations explain in more detail the circumstances for involuntary withdrawal from a course or the College due to academic circumstances.

Excessive Unexcused Absences

Students are expected to abide by the attendance policy documented in every course syllabus.  There are no automatically "excused" absences to attend athletic events, field trips or any other reason.  Students who face a conflict between class attendance and other needs (for example, illness, serious family crisis) must notify their faculty in advance.  When advance notice is impossible, faculty need to be contacted as soon as possible.  No one except the faculty member in charge of a class may excuse an absence.

Students who do not meet the attendance requirements in a given course may not be able to complete that course successfully. A student whose absences will prevent completion of the course with a passing grade should withdraw from the course.  If the student does not withdraw by the withdrawal deadline, he or she will fail the course.

Students who have excessive absences in the majority of their courses that will prevent them from passing these courses may be involuntarily withdrawn from the College.   The Vice President for Academic Affairs or designee, in consultation with the student's academic advisor, program director, the Registrar, and other pertinent campus entities will make the involuntary withdrawal determination.

Inappropriate Classroom Behavior Policy

Unruly or ill-mannered behavior is inappropriate in any instructional setting, e.g. classroom, online, Blackboard, field trips, etc. When an instructor finds that the student's behavior is not conducive to an appropriate instructional environment, the instructor has the right to ask the student to leave the instructional setting.

At this point, the faculty member has the right to require the students speak to the Academic Vice President or designee to resolve instructional setting behavioral issues. The Academic Vice President, among other things, may advise the student that s/he will be dropped from the courses with a grade of "W" if the behavior does not change. This decision is final.

Students who have exhibited inappropriate behaviors in the majority of their courses may be involuntarily withdrawn from the college.  The Vice President for Academic Affairs or designee, in consultation with the student's academic advisor, program director, Dean for Student Life, the Registrar, and other pertinent campus entities will make the involuntary withdrawal determination.

Appeal of Involuntary Withdrawal

Involuntary withdrawals from Cazenovia College may be appealed to the President who has the final decision.

Readmission after Involuntary Withdrawal

When a student requests readmission to the College following an involuntary withdrawal, s/he shall provide the Vice President of Academic Affairs or designee with evidence and documentation of compliance with any decision or agreement entered into under this policy. It is the responsibility of the student to provide documentation of compliance with these conditions.

Readmission is not guaranteed. After reviewing the case, including meeting with the student at the Vice President's discretion, the Vice President of Academic Affairs will make a decision on the student's request for readmission. S/he will designate any further conditions deemed necessary and notify the student in writing of his or her decision.

Attendance

All faculty members have a stated policy on class attendance which appears on each course syllabus. The College holds that absences have consequences for students' grades that are explained in each course syllabus. Absence from class may negatively affect grades. This occurs in two ways: faculty attendance policies may penalize students for excessive absence; and students who miss class also miss information and classroom interactions that lead to understanding of the course material.

Students are therefore responsible for the following:

  1. Attending every meeting of every class. Students not in class are considered absent. Students who do not meet the attendance requirements in a given class may not be able to complete that class successfully;
  2. Knowing and following the attendance policy of each class in which they enroll;
  3. Knowing there are no automatically "excused" absences to attend athletic events, field trips or any other reason. Students who face a conflict between class attendance and other needs (for example, illness, serious family crisis) must notify their faculty in advance. When advance notice is impossible, faculty must be contacted as soon as possible. There is no situation where the failure to contact professors is excusable. No one except the faculty member in charge of a class may excuse an absence;
  4. All coursework and making arrangements any coursework missed including assignments, tests, exams, lecture notes, et cetera.  Unexcused absences from announced tests, laboratories, special class projects and reports will result ordinarily in the award of an "F" for the work missed; and
  5. Scheduling appointments and other responsibilities so they do not conflict with classes.
  6. Absences in excess of 2 days may be reported to the program directors.

Field Trips

Travel to away-from-campus locations is a part of many academic programs at Cazenovia College. Students must seek permission from their instructor(s) if they may miss a class due to the field trip.  It is the student's responsibility to inform instructors in advance of field trips and to arrange for make-up classes, tests, examinations, etc., as appropriate.