Chapter 1: Starting Smart

College Policies

College catalog scavenger hunt

  1. List 3 types of information you can access from the College Catalog.
  2. In the MCC Catalog, click on “Student Code of Conduct and Title IX.” In the menu that opens click on “General Conduct Rules and Regulations,” briefly summarize the following:
    • Alcohol policy
    • Smoking policy
    • Substance (drug use) policy
    • Weapons policy
    • Definition of “harassment” and three groups mentioned as being protected from harassment
    • Any other two policies (not listed above)
  3. In the MCC College Catalog, under Student Handbook find and list:
    • three actions that are prohibited under the Computer Use Policies
    • the steps in the complaint or grievance process
    • three rights you have as a student

College Policies

A college campus is almost like a small town or country unto itself. The campus has its own police force, government, stores, ID cards, parking rules, and so on. Colleges also have their own policies regarding many types of activities and behaviors. It is important to become familiar with your college’s policies, so you know your rights and responsibilities as a student.

To foster a safe and healthy learning environment, colleges have policies about academic honesty, alcohol and drug use, sexual harassment, hazing, hate crimes, and other areas. Residence halls have policies about noise limits, visitors, hours, structural and cosmetic alterations of college property, and smoking, to name a few. The Office of Student Accounts has policies about course add and drop dates, payment schedules, refunds, and the like. Such policies are designed to ensure that all students have the same access to quality education.

Here are links to the MCC Student Handbook, which gives you information on everything from student conduct rules to student rights.

Your Rights and Responsibilities as an MCC Student

What are your new student responsibilities? Are they financial? Course specific? Social? Health related? Ethical? What exactly is expected of you?

According to recent research, students who are involved in career-planning activities stay in college longer, graduate on time, improve their academic performance, tend to be more goal focused and motivated, and have a more satisfying and fulfilling college experience. This is why an important first step in college is examining your personal identity and values. By examining your values first, you begin the process of defining your educational goals and ultimately planning your career. These important steps will be addressed in the following chapters of this text.

Monroe Community College respects the dignity of each individual member of the College community and recognizes certain rights and responsibilities as integral to achieving opportunities for intellectual, cultural, social and personal growth, and the health and safety of every student. Student Rights and Responsibilities are outlined in MCC’s Student Handbook. You may wish to refer to the handbook throughout the course for important policies and procedures.

Overall, you demonstrate that you are a responsible student when you do the following:

  • Uphold the values of honesty and academic integrity
  • Arrive on time and prepared for all classes, meetings, academic activities, and special events
  • Attend all classes and stay for the entire class period
  • Participate actively in groups
  • Give attention to quality and excellence in completing assignments
  • Allot sufficient time for responsibilities outside of class
  • Observe etiquette in all communications,
  • Give respect to instructors, fellow students, staff and the larger college community
  • Take full advantage of college resources available to you
  • Respect diversity in people, ideas, and opinions
  • Achieve educational goals in an organized, committed, and proactive manner
  • Take full responsibility for personal behavior
  • Comply with all college policies

By allowing these overarching principles to guide you, you embrace responsibility and make choices that lead to college success.

What do I do if I have a problem in one of my courses?

According to the MCC Student Handbook, when a student believes there are grounds for an academic complaint, these procedures shall be followed by all parties. The failure of any College personnel at any level to communicate a decision to the aggrieved student within the proper time limits shall permit the student to proceed to the next step of the process. Students should note the process is not anonymous.

All academic complaints should follow this process:

  1. Students must attempt to resolve the concern directly with the appropriate faculty member. The student shall make an appointment with the faculty member to discuss the concern outside of class time (not before, during, or after class).
  2. If the faculty member is not available in a timely manner or if the student is not satisfied with the outcome of that meeting, the student shall make an appointment to speak with the faculty member’s department chair. Some departments require a written statement of the complaint. The department chair will initiate the resolution process by investigating the complaint within five (5) working days.*
  3. If the student feels the complaint has not been resolved by the department chair, the student shall make an appointment with the faculty member’s academic dean within ten (10) working days.
  4. If the complaint has not been resolved at the dean level, the student may submit a written appeal to the Provost and Vice President, Academic Vice President (hereafter “the Provost”) within (10) working days from receipt of the decision by the dean. The appeal must reasonably establish that:
    • The established procedures were not properly followed; or
    • An adequate opportunity to present evidence was not allowed; or
    • The evidence was not substantial enough to justify the decision or resolution.
  5.  The Provost will issue a written decision within five (5) working days. The decision is final.

*”Working day” is defined as any day (Monday-Friday) that the College is officially open.

To think proactively about what you would do if you had an academic complaint, locate resources you could use to help you list the “chain of command” for a course you are currently taking. Based on your course schedule, you likely have the name of the course and faculty member, so explore resources you could use to help you locate the name of the department chair, the dean, and the Provost.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Monroe Community College expects students to remain in good academic standing, and MCC reviews satisfactory academic progress (SAP) by term (fall, spring, summer). Students are expected to earn a GPA of 2.0 or higher and maintain progress towards degree completion. Cumulative GPA is defined as the average of a student’s course history at MCC and only includes credit-bearing course work. When reviewing academic progress, however, TRS and other non-credit classes, as well as repeated courses, are included. A student who falls below satisfactory academic progress standards and/or does not complete the required percentage of courses for the term will be placed on Academic Warning. Persistent SAP concerns will result in students being placed on Academic Restriction. Students who appeal may be placed on Academic Probation. The following are the three requirements MCC expects from students to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP):

  • Students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0, including TRS, non-credit, and repeated courses.
  • Students’ credit completion must equal 67% of attempted credits in the current term.
  • Students must complete their educational program in no longer than 150% of the published length of the educational program

College policies

In groups of 2-3, explore one of the following college policies or procedures. You will find information about your policy or procedure in the Student Handbook. Read and take notes on your section. Then present to the class the information you think your classmates should know about the policy or procedure.

  • Academic Honesty
  • Code of Conduct of Users of College Computer Systems
  • Discrimination Complaint Procedure
  • Rights and Freedoms of Students
  • Services for Students With Disabilities
  • Student Consumer Information
  • Students’ Rights Regarding their Educational Records
  • Registration – Academic Progress
  • Registration – Drop, Add, Withdrawal Policy
  • Registration – Grading System and Satisfactory Academic Progress
  • General Conduct Rules – Alcohol, Smoking, and Substances
  • General Conduct Rules – Assault, Harassment, and Hazing

After the presentations, complete the following reflection independently.

  • What policy surprised you?
  • What policy do you most appreciate learning about? Why?
  • What policy have you had an interaction with? Explain.
  • What policy do you think should be added or deleted? Why?


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