Aug 19, 2022  
2020-2022 Catalog Volume XXX Ver 3 
    
2020-2022 Catalog Volume XXX Ver 3

Academic Information



Student Responsibility 

Students are responsible for properly completing their academic programs, being familiar with all requirements of the college catalog, maintaining the required grade point average, meeting all program and course requirements, and adhering to institutional policies, rules, and regulations. They are encouraged to seek counsel from faculty advisors or other staff members, but the final responsibility remains that of the student.

Students should reserve judgment about matters of opinion and express their views in a responsible and professional manner. Orderly procedures are provided to allow students the opportunity to question academic evaluations.

The South College Academic Honor Code provides a full description of expectations and sanctions relating to academic dishonesty.  This Code applies to all students and is available in the Student Handbook.  Graduate programs may have supplements to the South College Academic Honor Code and made available in the Handbooks for these programs.

Declaration of Major
A major is an area of focused study. Students are requested to declare their academic majors during initial college enrollment. Each student should then follow the requirements of his or her major listed in the college catalog. Declaration of major does not guarantee admittance to any program.

Students may pursue double majors with the approval of the appropriate dean/department chairperson. For recipients of VA benefits, the college’s certifying official must be notified, and only courses required to complete the dual major can be certified to the VA for payment of benefits.

Staff in the Registrar’s office at the designated campus must be informed of any anticipated changes in a student’s academic plans. A student changing his or her major must complete the Student Change Request Form during registration prior to the quarter that the change is effective. The form must be completed with the advisor for the new major. The decision to change majors should be made as early as possible to avoid taking unnecessary courses and lengthening the time required to complete a program.

Students using VA benefits must additionally consult with the Director of Financial Aid at the designated campus before changing their majors.

Definition of a Quarter Credit Hour

South College operates on a quarter system with each quarter having approximately 10-12 weeks. Course credit is awarded based on the number of contact hours spent in lecture or direct faculty instruction and/or lab/internship/ practicum/student teaching/clinical/practice experience. One credit hour is equivalent to at least 10 hours of lecture, 20 hours of lab work, 30 hours of internship/practicum/student teaching/clinical/practice experience or a combination of the three.

Credit Hour and Outside Classwork

Students should expect a minimum of 10 hours of classroom or direct faculty instruction, which may occur face-to-face or in an electronic environment, and a minimum of 20 hours of out-of-class student work for each credit hour. Classroom or direct faculty instruction may include, but is not limited to, lectures, discussions, presentations, projects, group interaction, and other activities that would normally occur during class time. Out-of-class work may include, but is not limited to, study and reflection, research, preparation, completion of assignments, reading and review of assigned materials, group meetings for study or project completion, participation in tutorials, labs, or simulations, and other electronic activities that are not part of the classroom or other or direct faculty instruction. Other academic work leading to the awarding of credit hours requires at least the equivalent amount of work listed in the paragraph above and is applied to other academic areas established by the institution, including laboratory work and internship/practicum/student teaching/clinical/ practice experiences. For example, one quarter credit hours is also equivalent to at least 20 hours of lab work and 30 hours of internship/practicum/student teaching/clinical/practice experience, or a combination of the equivalencies.

Credit Hour Conversions

Semester hours are normally converted to quarter hours by multiplying the number of semester hours by 1.5. This may be adjusted for programs whose adjusted academic calendar includes quarters of longer than 11 weeks.  Credits will be rounded up or down as appropriate.

Course Load

To complete program requirements in a timely manner, most students choose to attend classes full-time and enroll in four quarters per year. Course load designations are as follows:

Undergraduate:

  Full-Time
Three-Quarter Time
Half-Time
Less than Half-Time
12-20 quarter hours
9-11 quarter hours
6-8 quarter hours
1-5 quarter hours

Graduate:

  Full-Time
Half-Time
Less than Half-Time
8-20 quarter hours
4-7 quarter hours
1-3 quarter hours

Students wishing to enroll in more than 20 quarter hours must have permission of their academic advisor and the Dean of Academic and Student Services (Learning Sites), Dean of Academics (Online), or the Chief Academic Officer. Twenty-two undergraduate credits are normally the maximum hours allowed in a quarter with no incompletes, withdrawals, or less than satisfactory grades during the previous quarter.  Nine undergraduate credits are normally the maximum hours allowed in a five-week term.

Dropping and Adding Courses

Students may adjust their schedules by dropping and/or adding courses during the designed drop/add period in the Academic Calendar.  Students must consult with their advisor before dropping or adding any course. If a student has not academically participated in a course by the end of the designated dates each term, the student is administratively withdrawn from the course.  Once a student has academically participated in a course, the course is not considered to have been dropped unless the appropriate form has been completed by the student and officially recognized by the Registrar staff by the last date to drop without a grade penalty date designed in the Academic Calendar.  A course is not considered to have been added unless the appropriate form has been completed by the student and officially recognized by the Registrar staff within the Drop/Add period for the associated term.  Courses cannot be added after the Drop/Add period indicated on the Academic Calendar.

Course withdrawals prior to the end of the designated withdrawal date with no grade penalty as identified in the Academic Calendar will result in a non-punitive grade of W. After this designated date, a grade of F is assigned. (see Academic Calendar ).

The proper forms for adding and dropping courses should be secured from the academic advisor. Students withdrawing from all courses should refer to the Financial Information Section of the catalog and are encouraged to contact the Department of Student Services to discuss enrollment and the Financial Aid Office to determine the effect of withdrawals on program eligibility.

THIS SECTION ONLY APPLIES TO THE DROPPING/ADDING OF INDIVIDUAL COURSES. STUDENT WITHDRAWING FROM ALL CLASSES SHOULD SEE THE REFUND OF TUITION SECTION IN THE FINANCIAL INFORMATION SECTION OF THIS CATALOG

Auditing Courses

A student wishing to audit a course without receiving credit must obtain permission from the Dean or Department Chair before registering for the course. A student may not change from audit to credit status or from credit to audit status after courses begin. A grade designation of N will be recorded on student transcripts for audited courses. The regular schedule of fees applies to auditors. Unauthorized auditing is prohibited.

Class Standing

A certificate/degree program undergraduate student who has accumulated, by course completions or transfer credits, 35 quarter hours or less will have freshman status. Certificate/degree program students who have accumulated 36 quarter hours but fewer than 90 will be considered sophomores. Degree students with 90 quarter hours earned but less than 135 will be considered juniors, and those with 135 or more quarter hours earned are considered seniors. Only students enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs can achieve junior or senior status. To be considered a graduate student, admission to a graduate level program must be achieved.

Academic Participation

South College does not have an institutional attendance policy. Faculty members and/or programs may establish attendance/participation policies for their classes at their own discretion which affect course assignments, off-campus activities, internships or student teaching, clinical and practicum activities, and other program requirements. Students are responsible for knowing and complying with all course requirements, including attendance/participation policies, as published by faculty members in the specific course syllabus. In order to have the best possibility of academic success, students are expected to attend/participate in all scheduled activities that are part of a class, including activities scheduled during class time and those that may be scheduled outside of class time. A leave of absence option is not available.

Students are responsible for knowing all that is announced, discussed, lectured on, or posted for each class attempted, as well as for mastering all reading assignments. In addition, students are responsible for on-time submission of all assignments and tests, projects, postings, presentations, and unannounced quizzes. Make-up work may be permitted at the discretion of the faculty member.

Course Substitution Policy

Students are expected to complete the program requirements outlined in the South College Catalog in effect at the time they enroll. However, programs are subject to change at the discretion of institution. In these situations, or due to other mitigating circumstances (e.g., change in program of study), students may request a course substitution. Students should submit a Course Substitution Form to the associated Dean/Department Chair for consideration.  The Dean/Chair will forward the completed request form to the Dean of Academic and Student Services or the Chief Academic Officer for consideration.  Any substitution requests for general education courses will be reviewed by the General Education Dean/Chair. To be considered for a substitution, the course must meet the program student learning outcomes as listed in the Catalog. Students should submit all requests at least six (6) months prior to graduating.

South College Satisfactory Academic Progress

(Effective Fall Quarter 2018)
 A student must make measurable progress toward the completion of his/her course of study. Poor performance, such as failing grades or withdrawals from courses, may result in satisfactory academic progress issues. Successful completion of all scheduled courses each term is very important.

Minimum standards of satisfactory progress as defined in this catalog apply to all students. Individual academic programs, particularly graduate programs, may require additional qualitative and quantitative standards for continued matriculation in those programs. Please see the catalog section and program handbooks for the chosen program and carefully review all requirements.

For the purpose of determining whether or not a student is making such progress, the college has established minimum satisfactory progress standards that stipulate that students must meet required minimum standards according to a prescribed schedule in three areas for their current program.

  • Maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (CGPA);
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative course completion rate (CCCR); and
  • Complete program of study in not more than one and one-half times the required program length (maximum program length) measured in credit hours.

For purposes of satisfactory progress evaluation, all courses attempted in a quarter are included (i.e., on-ground, on-line, midquarter, full-quarter, etc.).

Maximum Program Length
A student must complete the entire program in which he/she is enrolled within one and one-half times the normal program length as measured in credit hours or face suspension from the institution. Extension of the student’s initial maximum time frame will be allowed for program changes and double majors. Students are allowed to appeal academic suspensions related to maximum program length.

Course Attempts
All courses in which the student was enrolled after the drop/add deadline published for each quarter will be counted in the cumulative credit hours attempted. This includes letter grades of A, B, C, D, and F, the passing grade of P, an incomplete grade of I, and a withdrawal passing grade of W.

Course Repeats
All repeated courses will be included in credit hours attempted. Earned credits (credit hours awarded for passed courses) will be counted only once regardless of the number of times a course has been repeated and passed. The last grade received will replace any previous course grades in the calculation of the cumulative grade point average unless the last grade is a W or N. When one of these is the last grade, the previous grade will continue to be used in the cumulative GPA calculation. Students may retake a course which has been successfully completed in order to improve their CGPA.

Incomplete Courses
The credits for incomplete courses will be counted as hours attempted but not earned in the quarter of enrollment if the I grade is present at the time that progress is evaluated. Incomplete grades must be cleared by the end of the first week of the subsequent quarter (unless special approval is received from the campus Dean). An incomplete grade not cleared by the deadline will be changed to an F. If an incomplete grade is cleared to a passing grade, the course credits will be counted as hours earned as well as attempted. The final grade awarded is included in the calculation of the cumulative grade point average.

Transfer Students
Transfer students will be considered to be making satisfactory progress at the time of their transfer to South College. Transfer credits awarded will be included in both hours attempted and hours earned for the purposes of satisfactory progress evaluation. Grades for transfer credits awarded from other postsecondary institutions are not included in the CGPA.

South College accepts transcripts for transfer credit evaluation throughout the students’ academic program with verification that all limits placed on total allowable transfer credits will not be exceeded. Transfer credits affect students’ cumulative course completion rate.

Change of Program
Students are allowed a maximum of two program changes unless approval is given. Changing from an associate level program to a baccalaureate level program in the same area is not considered a change of program. Program changes become effective at the beginning of the subsequent quarter that the program change form is completed. Satisfactory progress status is determined based on all courses attempted for the currently declared program and all transfer credits awarded for declared programs.

Students Who Were Last Enrolled at South College Before October 1, 2018 - These students will have their prior satisfactory progress status carried forward. Their progress after that time will be evaluated based on the current satisfactory progress policy.

Minimum Standards of Satisfactory Progress

Satisfactory academic progress is evaluated qualitatively, in terms of cumulative grade point average, and quantitatively, in terms of credit hours earned versus credit hours attempted at the end of each quarter. Students are evaluated based on the number of attempted credits associated with the ranges listed in the following tables according to the designated standard. These are minimum standards of satisfactory progress. Failure to satisfactorily complete scheduled courses in any term will hinder progress toward graduation and may result in satisfactory progress issues. Changes in Satisfactory Academic Process status are communicated to students in writing via letter/form. It is very important that the student report any changes in address to the Registrar’s office at the associated campus.

Certificate Programs

Evaluation Checkpoint/ Credit Hours Attempted Cumulative GPA
Required
Cumulative Completion Rate Required Result if Not Met
1-24.99% of Program Length 1.00 30% Students in this category not meeting minimum requirements are placed on one quarter of SP Warning. If the minimum requirements are not reached during that period, the student is placed on SP Suspension.
25-49.99% of Program Length 1.50 50% Students in this category not meeting minimum requirements are placed on one quarter of SP Warning. If the minimum requirements are not reached during that period, the student is placed on SP Suspension.
50%+ of Length 2.00 66.67% Students in this category not meeting minimum requirements are placed on one quarter of SP Warning. If the minimum requirements are not reached during that period, the student is placed on SP Suspension.
100% Maximum Program Length 2.00 66.67% Students in this category not meeting the minimum requirement are placed on SP Suspension.

Degree Programs

Evaluation Checkpoint/ Credit Hours Attempted Cumulative GPA
Required
Cumulative Completion Rate Required Result if Not Met
1-35.5 Credits Attempted 1.00 30% Students in this category not meeting minimum requirements are placed on one quarter of SP Warning. If the minimum requirements are not reached during that period, the student is placed on SP Suspension.
36-71.5 Credits Attempted 1.50 60% Students in this category not meeting minimum requirements are placed on one quarter of SP Warning. If the minimum requirements are not reached during that period, the student is placed on SP Suspension
72+ Credits 2.00 66.67% Students in this category not meeting minimum requirements are placed on one quarter of SP Warning. If the minimum requirements are not reached during that period, the student is placed on SP Suspension.
100% Maximum Program Length 2.00 66.67% Students in this category not meeting the minimum requirement are placed on SP Suspension

Satisfactory Progress Warning

Students not achieving the required minimum standards (either CGPA or CCCR) at the end of any quarter will be placed on satisfactory progress warning for one quarter. Students on satisfactory progress warning are eligible for federal financial assistance.

At the end of the warning term, if the student has not met the minimum CGPA and/or completion rate requirements, the student will be suspended from the college for failure to make satisfactory progress and at that time is not eligible for Title IV funds. Students in warning status that meet the cumulative minimum standards at the end of the warning term are considered to be making satisfactory progress.

Satisfactory Progress Suspension

Students not achieving the minimum standards (either CGPA or CCCR) at the end of a warning term will be placed on satisfactory progress suspension. Students reaching 100% of maximum program length with additional required courses will be placed on satisfactory progress suspension. In both cases, the student is not eligible for Title IV funds at the time of suspension. Students may appeal a satisfactory progress suspension. Please see the following section.

Appeal Procedures/SAP Probation

Students who wish to appeal a satisfactory progress suspension must contact the Dean of Academic and Student Services (Asheville & Atlanta campuses), the Director of Student Success/Affairs (Knoxville campuses & Nashville campus), or the Dean of Academics (Online) who will provide the student with the appropriate forms to complete for the appeal. Appeals must be requested in writing per the deadline communicated in the suspension letter received for the upcoming quarter, or at least two weeks prior to any other quarter.

In addition to the required institutional forms for the appeal, the student must describe in writing the mitigating circumstances that had an adverse impact on satisfactory progress in the academic program. The following is an example list of mitigating circumstances.

  • Death of an immediate family member
  • Student illness requiring hospitalization (this include mental health issues)
  • Illness of an immediate family member where the student is the primary caregiver
  • Illness of an immediate family member where the family member is the primary financial support
  • Abusive relationships
  • Divorce proceedings
  • Previously undocumented disability
  • Work-related transfer prior to the evaluation point
  • Change in work schedule prior to the evaluation point
  • Natural disaster
  • Financial hardship such as foreclosure or eviction
  • Loss of transportation where there are no alternative means of transportation
  • Documentation from the Academic Advisor, Institutional Counselor, and/or a Professional Counselor

The student must also provide information as to changes made that will allow the student to meet minimum requirements. Appropriate documentation of all circumstances should accompany the appeal.

Once a written request and associated materials for appeal are received, a hearing will be scheduled with the Satisfactory Progress Committee at the designated campus.

The Satisfactory Progress Committee will determine if the appeal is granted or not. If the appeal is granted, an acceptable academic plan will be established if needed to facilitate program completion. If an acceptable academic plan is approved, the student must agree with and sign the plan to evidence understanding of all requirements. Students with approved academic plans will be placed in probationary status for the duration of this plan. Students in this status are eligible to receive financial aid if otherwise eligible. Failure to meet the stipulations of an academic plan will result in dismissal and ineligibility to receive financial aid.

If a student appeals and is denied the appeal, or if a student fails to meet stipulations of an academic plan, he/she must remain out of school for at least two quarters. The student can then request an additional appeal for reinstatement but will be required to demonstrate changes that have occurred that promote an increased possibility of success. If the appeal is granted, an acceptable academic plan will be established to facilitate program completion. If an acceptable academic plan is approved, the student must agree with and sign the plan to evidence understanding of all requirements. Students with approved academic plans will be placed in probationary status for the duration of this plan. Students in this status are eligible to receive financial aid if otherwise eligible. Failure to meet the stipulations of an academic plan will result in dismissal and ineligibility to receive financial aid. A student who subsequently fails to meet an approved academic plan may appeal a second time after six months. 

If the appeal is denied a second time or the student fails to meet the stipulations of an academic plan for the second time, the student will be permanently dismissed.  Exceptions must be approved by the Vice Chancellor of Institutional Advancement and Effectiveness.

Decisions of the Committee are communicated to the student both verbally following the hearing and via letter, with a copy retained in the student academic file. These decisions are normally considered final, however a student disagreeing with the action of the Committee may appeal the decision to the Vice Chancellor of Institutional Advancement and Effectiveness. The request for review and the associated reasons must be submitted in writing to the Dean of Academic and Student Services (Asheville, Nashville, and Atlanta), the Director of Student Affairs (Knoxville), or the Dean of Academics (Online) within three (3) working days of the SAP Committee Hearing. The decision of the Vice Chancellor is final.

Grading System

The following grades are used in the determination of a student’s grade point average unless otherwise indicated. The range indicated is generally used, but there may be exceptions. For example, students enrolled in Health Profession programs may not follow the same scale for major curriculum courses. Students should refer to the grading scale listed in each course syllabus.


Grade
Quality Points
Range
Interpretation
A 4.0 90-100 Excellent
B 3.0 80-89 Above Average
C 2.0 70-79 Average
D 1.0 60-69 Minimum Passing
F 0.0 Below 60 Failure

Calculation of Grade Point Average

The cumulative grade point average is determined by dividing the total number of quality points (quality points x number of credit hours in course) earned by the total number of hours attempted. Transfer credits, course exemptions, and non-punitive grades will not be used in determining grade point average.

The following symbols are used on grade reports, but are not used in the determination of a student’s grade point average:

  EX Exempt
  K Course Credit Earned Through Credit by Examination
  TR Course Credit Earned Through Transfer
  *W Non-Punitive Withdrawal/Passing
  N Audit/Non-Credit
  **I Non-Punitive/Incomplete
  P Pass

*Withdrawal Recognized by Last Date to Drop Without Grade Penalty via Academic Calendar for the associated term.

** Incompletes will be given at the discretion of an instructor to any student who does not complete the course requirements. To receive an incomplete, the student must complete at least one-half of the course requirements; then, it is the student’s responsibility for completing the remainder of the required course work. This procedure must be completed by the last day of late registration of the next term (unless special approval is received from the Dean of Academic and Student Services (Learning Sites) or the Chief Academic Officer (Knoxville) or the incomplete will be changed to an F. The final letter grade for the course will be designated by the instructor.

Retaking Coursework

Students may receive Title IV funds for unlimited retakes of failed and/or withdrawn courses where no credits were earned as long as the student is meeting the minimum standards of satisfactory progress. Students who have earned credit(s) for a course may receive Title IV funds for one retake of any previously passed course. The student must have completed the course and earned credit for it to be considered a repetition. If the course is then failed while repeating the course, the student is not eligible for an additional retake because the student is considered to have completed the course. Courses that are failed or for which the grade does not meet the minimum requirements for graduation may be certified for VA purposes if they are repeated.

The last grade received will replace any previous course grades in the calculation of the cumulative grade point average unless the last grade is one of the following: W, WP, WX, or N. When one of these is the last grade, the previous grade will continue to be used on the GPA calculation.

Coursework Taken Outside a Student’s Declared Program

Students enroll in a program and the courses taken must all apply to that program. The requirements for the program are outlined in the institutional catalog/addendum. Some programs may include elective courses. Any course approved to fulfill the elective requirement is acceptable for student enrollment, as long as the elective requirement has not already been satisfied by another course.

If a student takes a course not required by his/her designated program, that course does not qualify for financial aid and does not qualify for determining the overall course load for the term for financial aid purposes. The student is responsible for payment of the tuition for the course and any associated fees.

A student who needs to complete one course to complete an associate degree and then intends to proceed directly into a bachelor’s degree program cannot take the bachelor’s program courses during the final quarter of the associate program and receive financial aid for the bachelor’s program courses.

Grade Reporting

Grades are available at the end of each quarter via the South College Student Portal.

Challenging of Grades

Assignment Grade Dispute:

The dispute of an assignment grade is handled between the student and instructor. If needed, the instructor’s direct supervisor may be involved. Campus or college level personnel are not involved in individual assignment grade disputes. In addition, a student may not dispute the specific point reduction as found in the syllabus or program handbook for an assignment that was submitted past the deadline.

Course Grade Appeal:

The determination of a final course grade is at the heart of the faculty member’s responsibility and involves academic expertise, experience, and judgement. 

Consideration of a grade appeal is limited to an evaluation of whether the final grade awarded was determined in accordance with the policies/standards/objectives/rubrics outlined in the course syllabus. A course instructor’s failure to follow the policies/standards/objectives/rubrics outlined in the course syllabus-for example, a grade calculation error-would constitute a valid reason to appeal a grade.

Process for Appealing a Grade:

  • STEP 1 - Discuss the matter with the course instructor.
  • STEP 2 - If the matter remains unresolved, the student may request an additional meeting following the academic chain of command (e.g., department chair, program director, or associate dean and then dean - if applicable). The academic leader may request the instructor to be present during the meeting.
  • STEP 3 - If the matter still cannot be resolved, the student may challenge the final grade by submitting a Course Grade Appeal Form within three business days after grades are posted to the respective campus Dean of Academic and Student Services or Dean of Academics (online).  The Dean may act upon the appeal or choose to refer the appeal to the Appeals Committee. The Course Grade Appeal Form is found in the Student Portal under the Student Services tab.
  • STEP 4 - If necessary, following decision of the Dean or Appeals Committee, a final appeal may be made to the Chief Academic Officer (CAO). The CAO will base his or her decision on the same information presented to the Dean of Academic and Student Services or Dean of Academics (online) or the Appeals Committee. The CAO will not entertain new evidence, claims, positions, or arguments from any party. The CAO’s decision is final so far as grade appeals are concerned. 

Honors

Only coursework taken at South College will be considered in computing honors.

  • President’s List - Published quarterly, the President’s List honors those students who demonstrate outstanding academic achievement. To be eligible for the President’s List, a student must earn a grade point average of 4.0.
  • Dean’s List - Published quarterly, the Dean’s List honors those students who demonstrate outstanding academic achievement. To be eligible for the Dean’s List, a student must earn a grade point average of 3.5 - 3.99.
  • Cum Laude - Degree students graduating with a grade point average of 3.50 through 3.74 will be graduated cum laude.
  • Magna Cum Laude - Degree students graduating with a grade point average of 3.75 through 3.89 will be graduated magna cum laude.
  • Summa Cum Laude - Degree students graduating with a grade point average of 3.90 through 4.00 will be graduated summa cum laude.
  • Honors - Certificate students graduating with a grade point average of 3.5 through 3.79 will be graduated with honors. (Undergraduate only)
  • High Honors - Certificate students graduating with a grade point average of 3.80 through 4.0 will be graduated with high honors. (Undergraduate only)
  • Who’s Who Among Students - Degree students are selected for membership in this national honorary society on the basis of academic excellence and extra-curricular activities. (Undergraduate only).

Students may be selected for membership in various honor societies that have been established at South College. These societies have varying membership qualifications, and some are related to specific majors. Information pertaining to these societies may be obtained from the associated Deans and Department Chairs.

Graduation Requirements (Undergraduate)

To receive a degree or certificate, a student must satisfy these requirements:

  1. The student normally must complete the course requirements in the catalog in effect when the student enrolled. However, academic programs are subject to change at the discretion of the institution. Students who leave the college may be required to meet catalog requirements at the time of their return.  Students may request Dean/Department Chair approval for course substitution. Deviation from any program requirements must be approved by the Chief Academic Officer (Knoxville), Dean of Academic and Student Services (Learning Sites), or Dean of Academics (Online).
  2. The student must earn the minimum grades designated by the program in all required courses.
  3. The student must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or higher for all coursework taken at the college (if higher CGPA is required by the program, this requirement must be met). At least 25% of any undergraduate degree or certificate program must be taken at South College (higher percentage may be required by program).
  4. The student must complete the Career Services exit program and all outcomes assessment exams prior to graduation.
  5. The student must abide by all college rules and regulations and settle any financial obligations to the college prior to graduation.
  6. Programs may have additional graduation requirements that must be fulfilled.

South College recognizes that students complete degree/certificate requirements on a term basis; however, degrees/certificates are normally publicly conferred only during the annual June/July commencement ceremony. Graduates are encouraged to pick up their diploma at the annual commencement ceremony but may choose to personally pick it up at the campus or have it mailed to them.  If mailing is requested, regular postal services will be utilized.  Other forms of mailing such as overnight service or two-day services will only be used at the expense of the graduate. No more than two degrees and/or certificates will be publicly awarded to an individual student during a graduation ceremony. If a separate ceremony is held for any program, students will be notified in advance.

Note: The institution reserves the right to waive the requirement for submission of an Application for Graduation in special circumstances where degree/certificate requirements are determined to have been met by the institution without separate Application for Graduation, an award for which the student has met degree/certificate requirements.

*Note - Graduation requirements for graduate level programs are listed in the catalog section pertaining to the program.

Application for Graduation

It is the responsibility of each potential graduate to complete an application for graduation. The application should be submitted no later than the first day of the quarter in which the student plans to graduate. Submissions later than this deadline could affect the student’s ability to graduate that quarter. Graduation applications should be completed with the appropriate academic advisor who will then submit the application, along with other required documentation, to the Registrar’s Office.

Academic Infractions

Alleged violation of academic regulations shall be addressed under the Academic Honor Code published in the South College Student Handbook.

PRIVACY OF STUDENT RECORDS - FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS & PRIVACY ACT (FERPA)

South College generally considers all personal information about students (except data in the President’s and Dean’s Lists, Southern DigestsExpressions, Commencement and Pinning Ceremony Programs, or Directory Information as described below) to be PII protected by FERPA. South College only discloses PII protected information by FERPA with the consent of the student or for permitted reasons where consent is not required under FERPA.  Such reasons include:

  1. South College officials having a legitimate educational interest as determined by the College in the proper performance of their duties, A school official is a person employed by South College in an administrative, supervisory, academic, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel); a person or company with whom South College has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using South College employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving as a preceptor for student practice rotations; a person serving on the Board of Trustees; 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; or a contractor, consultant, volunteer, or other outside party to whom South College has outsourced services or functions that would otherwise be performed by South College employees, the party is under the direct control of the institution with respect to the use and maintenance of education records, and the party is subject to the same conditions governing the use and redisclosure of education records that apply to other school officials. 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 responsibilities to South College. Upon request, South College also discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
  2. Other educational institutions in which the student seeks or intends to enroll or another institution of higher education in this the student is enrolled,
  3. Certain officials of U.S. Government and State and local educational agencies in connection with Federal or State supported educational programs,
  4. In connection with financial aid for which the student has applied for or has been awarded,
  5. Organizations conducting studies for the college or educational and governmental agencies,
  6. Accrediting agencies, including individuals or visiting committees, to carry out their functions,
  7. Parents of a dependent student, as defined in Section 152 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986,
  8. In response to a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena, and
  9.  Appropriate persons in connection with a health or safety emergency.
  10. Persons in addition to the victim of a crime of violence or non-forcible sexual offense, the final results of the disciplinary proceedings but only if the institution has determined that a student is the perpetrator of a crime of violence or non-forcible sexual offense, and with respect to the allegation made against him or her, the student has committed a violation of the institution’s rules or policies. (South College, in such instances, may only disclose the name of the perpetrator not the name of any other student, including a victim or witness without the prior written consent of the other student(s)).
  11. Both the accuser and the accused must be informed of the outcome of any institutional disciplinary proceeding brought alleging a sex offense. Compliance with this paragraph does not constitute a violation of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. 1232g). The outcome of a disciplinary proceeding means only the institution’s final determination with respect to the alleged sex offense and any sanction that is imposed against the accused.
  12. To a parent regarding the student’s violation of any federal, state, or local law or of any rules or policy of the school governing the use or possession of alcohol or a controlled substance if the school determines that the student has committed a disciplinary violation with respect to that use or possession, and the student is under 18 at the time of the disclosure to the parent.
  13. Directory information.
  14. To disclose information provided to the College under Section 170101 of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (42 U.S.C. 14071) concerning registered sex offenders who are required to register under that section.
  15. To the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) / Department of Homeland Security (DHS) concerning an F, J, or M nonimmigrant alien, only to the extent necessary for the College to comply with Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) reporting requirements, as mandated by the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, the USA PATRIOT Act, the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2002, and the regulation at 8 CFR 214.1(h).
  16. Consent is not necessary for the College to disclose required information to USCIS or DHS in compliance with SEVP reporting obligations.
  17. Student Recruiting Information as requested by the U.S. Military. Student recruiting information includes name, address, telephone, age or date of birth, classification, major, degrees/certificates received, and most recent educational institution attended. South College will not provide social security numbers, race, ethnicity, nationality, GPA, grades, students with loans in default, veteran’s status, students no longer enrolled. Students who opt out of the directory also opt out of student recruiting information.

South College may disclose personally identifiable information from an education record in association with an emergency if the information is deemed, by South College personnel, to be essential to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals. Decisions regarding the necessity of disclosure will take into account the overall circumstances pertaining to a threat to the health or safety of a student or other individual.

Students/graduates who wish to have their resumes released by the college through the Career Services Office to potential employers must complete a release form with the Career Services Coordinator. No resumes will be released unless the release form is completed.

Academic and other student records are maintained by the college according to the guidelines established by relevant government agencies.

Student Examination of Official Records

Pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), as amended, a current or former student has the right to inspect and review his or her educational records, which are maintained by South College.

  • Students have the right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day South College receives the student’s request for access.

Procedure for Examination

All requests to inspect a student’s educational record must be in writing (Request to Examine Records Form).  Copies of the identified form are available in the office of the Registrar and shall promptly be furnished to a student upon request. The student must complete and sign the Request Form and return it to the Registrar’s office.

Upon receipt of a completed Request Form, the Registrar shall notify the student of the date, time, and place for inspection of the student’s educational records.

  • A student requesting to inspect his/her education record in person or to personally pick up approved copies from an educational record may be asked to provide proof of identify with a photo identification.
  • A parent of a dependent child requesting access to his/her child’s educational record will be asked to provide proof of identity with a photo identification, and evidence of his/her claiming the student as a dependent for tax purposes.
  • A student requesting mailed copies from the educational record that the institution agrees to make will be asked to verify identity by providing specifically requested information.  If the institution is not satisfied with the information provided, the institution reserves the right to deny the request for mailing.
  • Cost for copies and/or mailing will be communicated at the time of the request.

Documents in student files, such as GED scores, high school diplomas, high school or previous college transcripts, birth certificates, ACT/SAT scores, Veterans Administration documents, and other program documents are not normally copied and released to students.

Requests for South College transcripts should be submitted to the Registrar.  Procedures for transcript request are available here.

Not all records are maintained indefinitely by the institution.

  • Students have the right to request amendment of permanent educational records if the student believes information to be inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.

Challenge to the Record

Under FERPA, a student is afforded the right to request an amendment to his or her educational record that is considered to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the privacy or other rights of the student. To request this amendment, the student must file a written challenge to the record with the college official responsible for that record. The written challenge must:

  • Clearly identify the specific data considered to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the privacy or the rights of the student.
  • Specify the reasons why the data are considered inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of the privacy or the rights of the student.
  • Include the names and addresses of all persons who have, or may have knowledge, information, records, or other data relevant to the contested data, if applicable.

If it is decided by the college not to amend the educational record as requested, the student will be notified in writing of this decision and also of his or her right to request a formal hearing. Additional information regarding the formal hearing procedures will be provided to the student at the time of this notification.

While a student is afforded the right under FERPA to request an amendment to his or her educational record, it is not intended to be used to challenge a grade or any other substantive decision that is recorded correctly.

Evaluations submitted by clinical/internship/student teaching/practicum supervisors/instructors may not be challenged.

  • Student have the right to provide written consent before South College discloses personally identifiable information (“PII”) from the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

Electronic Resources/Distance Learning Privacy Procedures

Student Authentication

The South College Student Network is built on the Cisco Systems infrastructure providing firewall protection, VLAN technology, and secure wireless connections across the campus and remotely. All South College student resources require a secure login with the student’s South College username and password managed by Microsoft Active Directory. To obtain the username and password, students must meet admission requirements and be approved by the registrar’s office to move to a start status.  The unique username is assigned by the institution and a unique password is chosen by the student.  A password of ten characters or longer is required that includes upper/lower case and special character. The student must login and be authenticated to gain access to the Student Portal, Library Resources, Printing, Canvas Learning Management Sites, and South College student email. By logging into the Canvas online course resources, and participating in any course related activities or assignments, students are attesting that they are person who is registered for the course. As indicated in the South College Computer Code of Ethics, users are prohibited from accessing resources on the College’s network using a different username and password that the one assigned. Students should never share their South College username and password with others.  South College has also implemented use of Azure Multi-Factor Authentication that helps safeguard access to data and applications while maintaining simplicity for users. It provides additional security by requiring a second form of authentication and delivers strong authentication via a range of easy to use authentication methods such as a verification text to mobile or a call.

Secure Testing

Online testing is secured according to program requirements utilizing the following systems: Respondus LockDown Browser; Respondus Monitor; ExamSoft; ExamMonitor; and designed time-limited assessments. 

Policies and Computing Code of Ethics

All students are required to abide by the South College Honor Code, the Student Conduct Standards and Regulations, the South College Computing Code of Ethics, and the Copyright Compliance Policy.

Hybrid and Distance Learning

Consistent with the institution’s mission of providing quality educational opportunities to a diverse student body, South College offers selected courses, as communicated via the quarterly class schedule in a distance learning format. If a program is delivered entirely online, this information is communicated in the description of the program. All courses at South College are driven by student learning outcomes no matter the delivery format. Distance learning courses are designed using sound pedagogical principles for online teaching, learning, and assessment, and delivered through the course management system, Canvas. These courses contain a variety of assignments, resources, and learning modules. Course lectures may appear in written form or written form enhanced with multimedia (i.e., narrated presentations, audio clips, video components, including lectures and screen captures). In addition to lectures, course materials may include online discussion forums, collaborative learning and group work, student presentations, quizzes and other assessments, writing assignments, readings, web-based research, and other activities identified by the course instructor.

Student Orientation to Distance Learning and Canvas
Distance learning course materials are delivered through the course management system, Canvas. All new distance learning students are recommended to complete a distance learning orientation module prior to starting classes. This module is available in Canvas, as a part of the Student Orientation course. It provides general information about distance learning policies and procedures and specific instructions on how to access support materials, log into distance learning courses, navigate through Canvas course sites, post to discussion forums, and submit assignments. Distance learning students should be aware of the expectations for successful participation in distance learning courses and be prepared to access support materials and practice any new skills needed.

Student Participation in Distance Learning Courses
All South College students are expected to adhere to established policies to include those included in this Catalog, Student Handbook to include the Academic Honor Code and the Computer Code of Ethics. 

Academic Participation
South College does not have an institutional attendance policy. Faculty members, including those teaching hybrid and distance learning courses and programs, may establish participation policies for their classes at their own discretion which affect course assignments, off-campus activities, internships or student teaching, clinical and practicum activities, and other program requirements. Students are responsible for knowing and complying with all course requirements, including attendance/participation policies, as published by faculty members in the specific course syllabus. Students are expected to attend/participate in all scheduled activities that are part of a class, including activities scheduled during class time and those that may be scheduled outside of class time, to promote academic success. A leave of absence option is not available.

Students are responsible for knowing all that is announced, discussed, presented, or posted for each class attempted, as well as for mastering all reading assignments. In addition, students are responsible for on-time submission of all assignments and tests, projects, postings, presentations, and unannounced quizzes. Make-up work may be permitted at the discretion of the faculty member.

Participating in a hybrid or distance learning course means logging into the course site and submitting an assignment, posting to a discussion forum, or completing some other activity as determined by the course faculty member. Minimum log in requirements are communicated via the course syllabus. Instructors will require students to log in and participate more during each week or to complete synchronous learning activities or other assignments. Students experiencing log in or Canvas access problems should submit a ticket through the South College help desk at http://helpdesk.south.edu as soon as the problem arises. Assistance with Canvas courses and system functions is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to students and faculty using the Canvas Help tab. Assistance is available via phone, chat, or email.  Students may access the Canvas Support Hotline help desk at 1-833-263-0705.

Intellectual Property Rights Policy

South College is committed to providing an atmosphere conducive to scholarship and research. Students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to engage in scholarly pursuit of knowledge and research. Although not the original intent, the results of such pursuits on the part of students, faculty, and staff may lead to the development of intellectual property that may be patented, copyrighted, or otherwise have commercial value. It is the purpose of this intellectual property rights policy to inform all members of the South College community of their rights and responsibilities whenever the results of their research or creative endeavors are patentable, copyrighted, or commercially marketable. The college recognizes the need to balance a number of diverse interests in such matters; thus, this policy reflects its commitment to (a) encourage, support, and motivate students, faculty, and staff in the creation of new knowledge and new applications of existing knowledge; and (b) safeguard the current and potential financial assets of the college.

The intellectual property right policies of South College, as amended from time to time, shall be deemed to be part of the conditions of employment of every employee of the College, including student employees, and of the conditions of enrollment and attendance by every student of the college.

The Vice Chancellor of Institutional Advancement and Effectiveness is responsible for the interpretation and implementation of the provisions contained in this policy and deciding disputes with appeal to the Intellectual Property Rights Committee.

  1. Coverage 

This policy applies to all full-time and part-time South College faculty, staff, and administrators and includes also graduate and undergraduate students, working with or without monetary compensation on any project under direction and control of the college, and anyone using the college facilities and/or assets or conducting activities under the supervision of college personnel. Contracts and subcontracts will generally include language that determines the ownership of intellectual property that is developed by those working under the terms of the contract or subcontract. This is the practice for those hired as independent contractors.

This policy covers all intellectual property, including but not limited to anything that is patentable, copyrightable, or otherwise marketable. Such property includes, but is not limited to, articles, books, study guides, syllabi, workbooks or manuals, instructional packages, tests, video or audio recordings, multi-media materials and computer software.

  1. Conflicting Provisions

If any portion of this policy conflicts with any agreement signed by the college, the provisions of the agreement will prevail. If any portion of this policy conflicts with a signed agreement between college and a creator (or a person who assists in the creation of intellectual property) or between the college and an external funding agency, the terms of the signed agreement will prevail.

  1. Copyright Use and Ownership

South College is committed to complying with all applicable laws regarding copyright. South College supports (1) the responsible, good faith exercise of full fair use rights, as codified in U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S. Sect. 101, et seq.) by faculty, librarians, and staff in furtherance of their teaching, research and creative activities, and service activities; (2) copyright ownership by faculty, staff or students of creative, non-directed works and college ownership of directed employment-related works; and (3) protection of ownership rights for creators of works that require a different ownership model.

Members of the campus community are encouraged to become as knowledgeable as possible regarding copyright and fair use as those legal principles apply to their discipline. South College does not accept legal responsibility for copyright infringement by individual members of the community. Individuals who willfully or negligently disregard South College policy and guidelines do so at their own risk and assume all liability.

Although South College encourages its faculty and staff to engage in a wide variety of activities related to education, it respects the legal right to intellectual and creative property in all media. Such educational activities must therefore be performed within the bounds of copyright law. The college does not support illegal duplication in any form.

  1. Copyright Ownership

With respect to determining ownership of copyright, South College’s policy addresses works by category of copyrightable work (including traditional or non-directed works, directed works, and sponsored or externally contracted works) and by category of author (i.e., faculty, staff, independent contractor or student). Ownership of copyrighted subject matter, including software, hinges on which category of work and which category of author pertains to the work at issue.

  1. Patent Ownership

With the exception of “Inventions Made on Own Time,” every invention or discovery or part thereof that results from research or other activities carried out at South College or that is developed with the aid of the college’s facilities, staff, or assets or through funds administered by the college, shall be the property of the college and, as a condition of employment or enrollment and attendance, shall be assigned by college inventor to South College in accordance with these policies.

  1. Sharing Royalties or Other Income

See full policy.

  1. Intellectual Property Policy and Rights Committee

The Intellectual Property Policy and Rights Committee will decide disputes over ownership, and its attendant rights, of intellectual property. The Committee shall make an initial determination of whether South College or any other party has rights to the invention or other creation, and, if so, the basis and extent of those rights. The Committee shall also resolve competing faculty claims to ownership when the parties cannot reach an agreement on their own. The Committee will review the merits of inventions and other creations and make recommendations for their management. Decisions of the Committee may be appealed in writing to the President, who has final authority concerning South College policies on intellectual property.

This information is an excerpt from the full Intellectual Policy. Please see the full Intellectual Property Policy at www.south.edu under Sponsored Programs and Research for complete information, policy, and procedures.

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

The IRB is a committee whose primary responsibility is to protect the rights and welfare of human research subjects. All research activities involving human subjects must be reviewed and approved by the IRB. Human subjects research is defined as any systematic investigation that is designed to contribute to generalizable (scholarly) knowledge, and which uses living humans or identifiable information about living humans.

In accordance with the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations, the IRB reviews research proposals to ensure risks have been minimized and the potential for benefit has been maximized before human subjects participate in the research. The authority conveyed to the IRB includes decisions to approve, disapprove, require modifications, monitor, suspend and terminate research projects involving human subjects.

The IRB also ensures that human subjects volunteer to participate in research only after providing legally effective informed consent. Investigators may not solicit subject participation or begin data collection until they have received approval from the IRB.

All investigators and key personnel who participate in the design, conduct, or reporting of human subjects’ research must be trained in the protection of human subjects. South College uses the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) web-based human research courses to satisfy the requirement for training in human research subjects protection. Initial and continuing education (every 3 years) are required. Training must be completed prior to receiving initial or continuing IRB review of research. The South College IRB Policies and Procedures Manual for Human Subjects Research may be found on the South College website under Faculty and Staff Additional Resources.