Student Handbook For Non-credit Programs

Academic Dishonesty

It is contrary to justice, academic integrity, and to the spirit of intellectual inquiry to submit another’s statements or ideas as one's own work. To do so is plagiarism or cheating, offenses punishable under the University's disciplinary system. Because these offenses undercut the distinctive moral and intellectual character of the University, we take them very seriously.

Proper acknowledgment of another's ideas, whether by direct quotation or paraphrase, is expected. In particular, if any written or electronic source is consulted and material is used from that source, directly or indirectly, the source should be identified by author, title, and page number, or by website and date accessed. Any doubts about what constitutes "use" should be addressed to the instructor.

Charges of academic fraud against students are subject to the University's policy on academic fraud when the regulations of the external sponsors (e.g. the federal government) are involved as determined by the Office of the Provost. In all other cases, charges of academic fraud against students are subject to this academic fraud policy only to the extent that they involve dissertations, capstone projects, or master’s thesis from students who have received their degrees, or work published or submitted for publication; other cases of academic fraud by students are subject to the University's area disciplinary system as described in Section title Disciplinary Procedures, below.

Academic Progress for Non-Degree Seeking Students

Program staff regularly evaluate student academic progress. Staff use the criteria outlined below, along with their judgment, to determine whether a student is making satisfactory academic progress. In doing so, staff balance a program’s academic or professional expectations with providing appropriate support to students, when needed, so that they can reach their goals. Adult lives can become complicated and students are encouraged to talk to their program staff directly should they experience (or anticipate) situations that may impede their progress.

Students in non-degree programs make satisfactory academic progress if they:

  • Receive passing grades.
  • Have no incomplete courses.
  • Make measurable progress through coursework.

Accomodations For Persons With Disabilities

The University strives to be supportive of the academic, personal and work-related needs of each individual and is committed to facilitating the full participation of students with a disability in the life of the University.

The office of Student Disability Services works to provide resources, support and accommodations for all students with disabilities and works to remove physical and attitudinal barriers, which may prevent their full participation in the University community.

Requesting Reasonable Accommodations

If you are interested in requesting disability accommodations, we suggest that you begin by reading through the information published on the Student Disability Services website. Also, please communicate your requests as far in advance as possible to disabilities@uchicago.edu, or by phone at 773.702.7776. Appropriate, professional documentation verifying the disability and specifying recommended accommodation(s) is generally required to support the request.

Accurately Representing the Program of Study

Students belonging to the non-degree programs are members of the University of Chicago academic community, and must always present themselves as belonging to the appropriate Graham School program – and not misrepresent themselves (in business cards, electronic signatures, websites, social media, blogs, and other forms of communication) as being part of any Masters or PhD program at the University of Chicago.

Attendance And Participation

Students are expected to attend and participate in each class. Absences and tardiness not only can result in a lowered grade but also jeopardize a student’s standing in a program. Students should carefully review each course syllabus for specific guidance on attendance and participation. Students have the responsibility to communicate in a timely manner with course instructors regarding absences.

Changes Of Information

The Graham School reserves the right to change without notice any statement, including but not limited to, course offerings, dates, costs, and instructors.

Course Cancellation

The Graham School reserves the right to cancel courses with no advanced notice. If a course is cancelled, students will have the option for a full refund or to transfer their registration to an open course. For additional information, please see the Graham School cancellation policy.

Disciplinary Procedures

Graham School Area Disciplinary Committee

The Graham School Area Disciplinary Committee is comprised of three faculty members, one current Graham student, a non-voting representative from Campus and Student Life, and the Dean of Students or their designee who are also non-voting members of the committee. The Dean of the Graham School or their designee chooses and officially appoints the committee members. The Dean of Students or their designee calls the group together for a hearing when all the preceding elements have concluded in the area disciplinary review process.

The Dean of Students or their designee will prepare documents for examination by the committee. The Dean of Students or their designee will also ask for the participation of individuals in the hearing process. These individuals will include individual who has brought charges forwarded and the student who is accused of possible academic or behavioral misconduct. The following are general guidelines which will govern the review process:

  1. The committee will appoint one person to serve as the chair of the committee. The chair will lead the hearing process.
  2. The committee will listen to presentations by all person called to participate in the hearing.
  3. The committee may directly ask questions of all hearing participants.
  4. Hearing participants must ask the committee for permission to directly question another participant in the hearing process.
  5. After the conclusion of the hearing, the committee will deliberate in a closed session to determinate possible violations and sanctions.

Students may review full disciplinary hearing details that includes students’ rights and responsibilities in the process in the University student manual.

Disciplinary Review Process

A student may request review of the Graham School Area Disciplinary Committee’s decision with the Dean of Students for the University. For more information about the review process, please see the University student manual.

Grades

Non-Degree Programs Grade Policy

The Graham School’s certificate programs use the following grading scale; A: 93-100; A-: 90-92; B+: 87-89; B: 83-86; B-: 80-82; C+: 77-79; C: 73-76; C-: 69-72; F: 68 – 0. The Graham School’s certificate programs do not confer “D” grades.

The minimum passing grade for certificate program courses is ‘C-‘ or ‘P’. Students are required to complete their final exam/project to earn a passing final grade.

Incomplete Grades
Grades of “I” indicate “Incomplete” work. Students have 45 days from the last day of the course to complete outstanding coursework. Once the work for an “I”-graded course has been completed, the program will record the new grade. If students fail to complete course requirements within the designated time period, they will receive a failing grade. Students who need to take an incomplete for a course must communicate immediately with the course instructor and program staff. It is expected that requests will be made and accepted before the course ends.

Grade of Pass/Fail
Grades of “P” indicate “Pass” and grades of “F” indicate “Failure.”

Grade of R or Audit
Grades of “R” indicate a “Registered” or “Audit” status. Grades of “R” are either assigned by the instructor or arranged in advance by the student via the registration process.

Grade of “W”- Withdrawn
Grades of “W” indicate “Withdrawn” (albeit not “dropped”). Grades of “W” either are assigned by the instructor or administratively by the program staff. Please see the cancellation policy for more information.

Grade Appeal Process

Instructor Conference

The student shall first request, in writing, a conference with the instructor to explain the reason for the appeal and seek a resolution. The appeal must be submitted no later than 7 calendar days after the start of the next quarter after which the class was taken.

Criteria for a grade appeal:

Students may appeal the professional judgment exercised by an instructor in assigning a grade only under the following circumstances:

  1. Grades resulting from deviations in the instructor’s established and announced grading procedures
  2. Errors in application of grading procedures
  3. Modification of grades for non-academic reasons
  4. Gross error in judgment by the instructor

Program Director Conference

If the student is not satisfied with the instructor’s resolution to the grade appeal the student shall request to meet with the instructor’s program director. This request to meet with the instructor’s program director must be made in writing within seven (7) calendar days of the date of the meeting with the instructor. The written request should specify the student’s reason for appeal and provide supporting evidence where appropriate.

Dean of Students Conference

If the student desires to request review of the program director’s decision, a written request for a conference with the dean of students must be filed by the student within seven (7) calendar days of the issuance of the program director’s written decision. The dean of students will provide a copy of the request for review to the instructor and the program director and will facilitate a review of the criteria. The dean of students will prepare a concise, written review of his/her findings and deliver the findings to the student in writing as a final response to the grade appeal.

Grievance Procedure

For matters dealing with class procedures or other academic affairs, the student first should approach the course instructor and/or the program director involved and attempt to resolve the issue with him or her. If the student's concerns are not satisfactorily resolved, the student should present the matter to the Graham School's dean of students in writing. The dean of students will investigate the matter and work with all parties involved. If the matter remains unresolved or dissatisfactory, after the intervention of the dean of students, the student may contact the University's student ombudsman, who works as an outside observer and mediator.

For matters dealing with general policies of the School, requests should be made directly to the dean of students.

For discrimination and/or harassment (including sexual harassment) concerns, see University’s Student Manual policy on Unlawful Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct.

Late Papers, Projects, and Assignments

Students are responsible for contacting the course instructor to obtain his or her policy regarding late papers, projects, and assignments. Whenever possible, it is expected that the student will consult with the instructor prior to missing a deadline.

Submitting assignments late may result in a lower grade on the assignment and/or result in a lower grade for the course.

Minors

To preserve the academic environment, students may not bring minors or guests into the classroom, or leave minors unattended in University Buildings.  Outside the classroom, the Graham School occasionally holds event offerings which may be appropriate for minors and where guests may be welcome. If you have questions about whether or not you may bring a minor or guest to an event, please contact your program staff.

Record Maintenance and Review

Record Maintenance

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a federal statute that protects the privacy of students’ education records and affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. For information about education records, including the University’s procedure for inspection and review of education records, please see the Student Manual.

Graham School Student Record Maintenance

The Dean of Students staff, Registrar’s Office, and program administrators have access to and maintain certain student records.  Disciplinary records are maintained by the Office of the Dean of Students separately from a student's academic files.

Revoking or deferring acceptance

The Graham School expects students who have been admitted but not yet enrolled in courses to have made the same commitment to University policies and regulations governing student conduct. Admission may be deferred or revoked for fraud, misrepresentation, material omission of fact, dishonesty, violation of University standards in the application for admission, violation of University academic standards, or other pre-matriculation misconduct. For more information about Area Admissions Review for pre-matriculation misconduct, please see the Student Manual.

Time to Completion

After starting their coursework, students in certificate programs are expected to complete the program within three years. If students need more time, they can contact program staff.

Transcripts

A non-degree transcript is a record of a student’s progress and performance while enrolled. Courses completed appear on the student transcript with the grade received.

The Dean of Students staff, registration staff, and program administrators have access to and maintain student records and transcripts. To request a transcript, please contact the program administrators directly.

Withdrawal From A Program

A student may choose to withdraw or a student may be withdrawn from a program for a number of reasons. Students who withdraw and later request to return to the program must reapply. Withdrawals fall into one of two categories:

  1. involuntary withdrawal; and
  2. voluntary withdrawal.

Involuntary Withdrawal

There are four general reasons why a student may be withdrawn from a program involuntarily. These are detailed below.

  • Students who fail to meet the conditions of an academic progress plan.
  • Students who have not taken a course in 3 years.
  • Students who have financial or administrative restrictions. Restrictions may result from a student’s failure to fulfill financial obligations to the University or to comply with University rules and regulations. Whenever possible, students are warned of an impending restriction and are notified when one has been imposed.
  • As a result of a disciplinary decision.

Voluntary Withdrawal

Students who choose not to continue with their certificate program must inform program staff and taking the following steps:

  • Discuss the implications of interrupting your study with program staff.
  • Send an email stating why you need to be withdrawn from the program to your program staff.
  • If students choose to continue with their certificate program at a later date, they must reapply.