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3.4.5 Academic Policies PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 01 September 2009 07:04

3.4.5     Academic Policies

The institution publishes academic policies that adhere to principles of good educational practice. These are disseminated to students, faculty, and other interested parties through publications that accurately represent the programs and services of the institution.

Responsible Unit: Division of Academic Affairs

Compliance Judgment



North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (A&T) publishes academic policies for students, faculty, and other parties that comply with principles of sound educational practices.  The university uses a wide range of methods to disseminate academic policies, such as Web sites, media outlets, and hard copy publications.  Most policies are created and revised by the appropriate governing bodies at A&T.

A&T publishes the Undergraduate Bulletin [1] and a Graduate Catalog [2] with policies, services, and procedures relating to students, faculty, staff and other interested parties.  Hard copies and CD versions of these  publications are published every other year.  Each bulletin is available on the university Web site and revisions are made when necessary.  All catalog revisions begin with the individual academic program and are approved by the dean of each school/college.  The Division of Academic Affairs is responsible for maintaining and updating the Undergraduate Bulletin, and the School of Graduate Studies is similarly responsible for the Graduate Catalog.

A&T's Center for Distance Learning [3] enables students to access degree programs and courses of the university at convenient sites and times. Courses are offered through online and extension programs.  Additionally, the Office of Evening/Weekend Programs [4], in collaboration with academic departments, schools, and colleges, coordinates courses and degree programs to meet the educational needs of nontraditional students.

For students considering attending A&T during the summer, there are instructions, applications, and forms online through the Office of Summer Sessions and Outreach [5].  The primary function of the Office of Summer Sessions and Outreach is to plan, coordinate, and administer undergraduate and graduate courses of study along with a variety of workshops, seminars, and outreach programs and activities. Summer sessions are structured to boost student participation by offering an extensive range of degree-related courses. Accordingly, the university's four-year graduation rate is significantly enhanced through summer sessions.

Prospective students are encouraged to view targeted documents from the Future Students [6] link from the university home page; links include information about academic programs, financial aid, tuition, new student orientation and other areas of interest to applicants, including information on technology and housing.  A&T's Administrative Policies and Procedures [7] are available on the university's Division of Business & Finance Web site, providing  faculty and staff with detailed descriptions of administrative and business procedures and local, state, and federal regulations governing university practice.  The Web site also provides links to governing agency Web sites such as the Office of the State Controller or the UNC General Administration.  Policies are generated and approved by the Chancellor's Cabinet, the Board of Trustees, and/or selected university committees. For example, the policy on student travel was based on a State Budget Office (legislative) ruling, but was formulated by a committee composed of representatives from business & finance, student affairs, legal affairs, and the Office of the Provost.  Vice chancellors are advised of policy but unless there are suggestions for improvement, the committees are empowered to complete the task, proceed to implement the policy and communicate it to the university community.  The policy is then placed at the appropriate Web site location for reference.

The Faculty Handbook [8] details the specifics of faculty organization, instructional policies, the administration of research programs, library regulations, and numerous other academic procedures and regulations including academic governance. Article IV of the Faculty Handbook governs the actions of the Faculty Senate [9]. The Faculty Senate works in conjunction with university committees to recommend academic policies.  Once a policy is approved by the Faculty Senate, it is forwarded to the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. Each faculty member is provided with a handbook. During the 2008-2009 academic year, an online version became available.

Additionally, faculty who advise students have access to an Academic Advising Handbook [10], a resource that aids in the advising process and contains information about policies and procedures.

The Staff Senate [11] consists of representatives from throughout the university, and serves as an advisory group to the chancellor.  The primary function of the Staff Senate is to represent the SPA staff and non-teaching EPA staff, bringing their concerns to the attention of the chancellor along with suggestions for alleviating them. The senate also presents programs for and disseminates timely information and educational materials to the SPA and non-teaching EPA staff. Senators work with the offices of business affairs, student affairs, and information resources to generate, discuss, and disseminate policies that protect and benefit faculty and staff and that serve the university.  The senate was created about nine years ago by the UNC president.

A&T has an active student government. The Student Government Association president attends Faculty Senate meetings, and the secretary of the Faculty Senate attends student government meetings to communicate pertinent information and policies.

The Office of Dean of Students [12] publishes the University Student Handbook [13] that includes information on student services and programs, the code of student conduct and disciplinary procedures, academic information, and campus policies and regulations. Policies particularly relevant to students and faculty are student grievance, academic integrity (plagiarism), incomplete and withdrawal policies.  The Faculty Handbook also offers guidance concerning student discipline and due process that is outlined in the Student Handbook.

A number of administrative units also publish information for the academic community related to their mission. The Web site for the Office of the Registrar [14] contains information pertaining to policies and procedures related to course registration and graduation requirements. The Office of Admissions [15] provides details related to admission on its Web site.

A&T also conveys information to the university community through student publications such as the Orientation Booklet. Students participating in Orientation and First Year Experience Program [16] receive copies of the Orientation Booklet outlining how to register for classes and meet advisors, as well as a brief tour/write-up of the campus.

Further information regarding the publication of information can be found in the response to Principles 3.5.3, Undergraduate program requirements; 3.6.4, Post-baccalaureate program requirements; and 4.6, Recruitment materials.

Supporting Documents

[1]    Undergraduate Bulletin, 2008-2010

[2]    Graduate Catalog, 2008-2010

[3]    Distance Learning, Website

[4]    Evening/Weekend Programs, Website

[5]    Summer Session and Outreach Programs, Website

[6]    Website, Prospective Student

[7]    Policies, Business & Finance

[8]    Faculty Handbook, 2007

[9]    Faculty Senate

[10]  Academic Advising Handbook

[11]  Staff Senate, Website

[12]  Student Affairs, Dean of Students

[13]  Student Handbook

[14]  Registrar, Website

[15]  Admissions, Website

[16]  Student Affairs, Orientation and First Year Experience Website

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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 03 February 2010 10:06 )

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