Welcome and thank you for visiting this page. The following matters pertain to the mutual obligations of faculty, staff, and students in ensuring a positive educational experience for all. Below you will find important detailed material regarding various academic policies and procedures, including suggestions for language that can be used in your course syllabi.
SPECIAL NOTICES RELATED TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
(Updated – August 3, 2021)
During the COVID-19 pandemic, norms for the conduct of classes and for student classroom behavior are necessarily different than in the past. The following guidance and suggested syllabus language pertain to issues arising from these new norms. Please note that the guidance here is intended to supplement the other policies and procedures that are found further below in this document.
This fall we return to the normal use of our classroom spaces. Classes have been scheduled using the standard capacities of the rooms. As of 8/3/2021, all students, faculty, staff and visitors, including those who are vaccinated, are asked to wear masks while indoors. The university is carefully watching the public health situation in the county, state and nation, as well as updated information from the CDC and NYS Department of Health and will make changes as needed.
Students in Quarantine or Isolation
Students who enter quarantine (exposure to a COVID-positive person) or isolation (confirmed COVID infection) will not be able to attend in-person class sessions. Instructors will receive a notification that the student is unable to attend class. Students in quarantine or isolation who have no symptoms or only mild symptoms may continue to participate in classes remotely if that option exists. If a student is sick and unable to participate in class at all, faculty will be notified by the office of the Dean of Students.
Faculty teaching classes that are fully in-person should be prepared to accommodate students who enter into quarantine or isolation, just as they would accommodate any student who falls ill for an extended period of time.
Many of our first-year students are coping with two transitions simultaneously. They are transitioning from high school to college, with all of the academic challenges that represents. They are also transitioning from a year or more of remote learning to in-person classes here at Syracuse University. It is natural that some of these students will experience self-doubt. Faculty teaching first-year students should be prepared to help students overcome these challenges with empathy and understanding.
Student Mental Health
During the pandemic, students across the country have reported elevated levels of stress, anxiety, and depression. In some cases, students bring these concerns directly to their instructors, perhaps in the context of a missed assignment or poor performance in the course.
The following text has been provided by the Barnes Center and may be included in your syllabus:
Mental health and overall well-being are significant predictors of academic success. As such it is essential that during your college experience you develop the skills and resources effectively to navigate stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health concerns. Please familiarize yourself with the range of resources the Barnes Center provides (https://ese.syr.edu/bewell/) and seek out support for mental health concerns as needed. Counseling services are available 24/7, 365 days, at 315-443-8000, and I encourage you to explore the resources available through the Wellness Leadership Institute, https://ese.syr.edu/bewell/wellness-leadership-institute/
ACADEMIC DROP DEADLINE
As part of our efforts to track satisfactory academic progress, the Academic Drop Deadline and the Financial Drop deadline will both occur on September 20, 2021, for the fall semester and February 14, 2022, for the spring semester. Students may still withdraw from courses after these deadlines; this would place a ‘WD’ grade on their transcripts. Students enrolled in “flex” classes (Flexibly formatted classes) have different deadlines and will need to check MySlice for the academic drop deadline that pertains to their class.
ACADEMIC INTEGRITY and TURNITIN USAGE
The Academic Integrity Policy is designed to achieve four goals— increased effectiveness, increased fairness, increased flexibility, and increased efficiency. Academic integrity is a core value of the University and one for which we all share responsibility. Please remember your role in fostering the highest ideals of academic honesty and integrity. The Center for Learning and Student Success (CLASS) collaborates with schools and colleges to implement our policy for academic integrity developed in consultation with the University Senate.
New Academic Integrity Syllabus Language
Syracuse University’s Academic Integrity Policy reflects the high value that we, as a university community, place on honesty in academic work. The policy holds students accountable for the integrity of all work they submit and for upholding course-specific, as well as university-wide, academic integrity expectations. The policy governs citation and use of sources, the integrity of work submitted in exams and assignments, and truthfulness in all academic matters, including course attendance and participation. The policy also prohibits students from: 1) submitting the same work in more than one class without receiving advance written authorization from both instructors and, 2) using websites that charge fees or require uploading of course materials to obtain exam solutions or assignments completed by others and present the work as their own. Under the policy, instructors who seek to penalize a student for a suspected violation must first report the violation to the Center for Learning and Student Success (CLASS). Students may not drop or withdraw from courses in which they face a suspected violation. Instructors must wait to assign a final course grade until a suspected violation is reviewed and upheld or overturned. Upholding Academic Integrity includes abiding by instructors’ individual course expectations, which may include the protection of their intellectual property. Students should not upload, distribute, or otherwise share instructors’ course materials without permission. Students found in violation of the policy are subject to grade sanctions determined by the course instructor and non-grade sanctions determined by the School or College where the course is offered, as described in the Violation and Sanction Classification Rubric. Students are required to read an online summary of the University’s academic integrity expectations and provide an electronic signature agreeing to abide by them twice a year during pre-term check-in on MySlice.
[Insert here any course specific expectations consistent with the Academic Integrity Policy.]
Faculty and instructors wishing to exercise their option to levy grade sanctions up to and including course failure for any violation – including those violations classified as Level 1 in the Academic Integrity Policy – should inform students of this intent by including a statement to this effect in their syllabus. Suggested language:
The Violation and Sanction Classification Rubric establishes recommended guidelines for the determination of grade penalties by faculty and instructors, while also giving them discretion to select the grade penalty they believe most suitable, including course failure, regardless of violation level. Any established violation in this course may result in course failure regardless of violation level.
Academic Integrity Online
For courses that include online assessments (tests, quizzes, etc.), maintaining academic integrity can be a challenge. The Center for Teaching and Learning Effectiveness (CTLE) and the Center for Learning and Student Success (CLASS) have developed some useful resources to help faculty develop effective online assessments. Some faculty have had success using Zoom as a proctoring tool for timed examinations. General Counsel has determined that using Zoom or other webcam-based proctoring approaches is not a violation of student privacy rights. Instructors may wish to supplement the syllabus statement on academic integrity (below) with additional information on the conduct of online assessments. For example:
“All academic integrity expectations that apply to in-person quizzes and exams also apply to online quizzes and exams. In this course, all work submitted for quizzes and exams must be yours alone. Discussing quiz or exam questions with anyone during the quiz or exam period violates academic integrity expectations for this course.”
Instructors may also wish to include a statement warning students of the potential risks of using websites that that charge fees or require uploading of course materials to obtain exam solutions or assignments completed by others. For example:
“Using websites that charge fees or require uploading of course material (e.g. Chegg, Course Hero) to obtain exam solutions or assignments completed by others and present the work as your own violates academic integrity expectations in this course.”
Syllabus Statement, Guidelines and Consent Forms for Instructors Who Use Turnitin
In order to comply with University policies and federal and state law, including privacy and intellectual property law, instructors who plan to use the software program Turnitin for detection of potential plagiarism are required to notify students in advance of their intent to do so. Furthermore, instructors are required to use one of the two submission methods listed below. Failure to adhere to these policies may be taken into consideration when faculty interviewers review suspected academic integrity violations.
- Students submit their own papers or other assignments directly to Turnitin via Blackboard so that both student and instructor can view the results, OR
- Students sign a statement* giving consent for submission of their papers to Turnitin.
Instructors who use Turnitin should also include a syllabus statement informing students that they plan to use Turnitin and describing how they will use it. The example below is designed for courses in which the instructor allows students to submit their papers to Turnitin before the instructor does so. Instructors should tailor their syllabus statement to specify how they will use Turnitin in each course.
“This class will use the plagiarism detection and prevention system Turnitin. You will have the option to submit your papers to Turnitin to check that all sources you use have been properly acknowledged and cited before you submit the paper to me. I will also submit all papers you write for this class to Turnitin, which compares submitted documents against documents on the Internet and against student papers submitted to Turnitin at Syracuse University and at other colleges and universities. I will take your knowledge of the subject matter of this course and your writing level and style into account in interpreting the originality report. Keep in mind that all papers you submit for this class will become part of the Turnitin.com reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of such papers.”
*The consent statement should be signed and dated and should include language authorizing the instructor to submit student papers or assignments “to the plagiarism detection and prevention system Turnitin.” The consent statement should make clear that submitted student work will be compared to other student papers as well as to Internet documents and will become part of the Turnitin.com reference database, for example:
“By signing below, I give permission for the submission of all work I turn in for [COURSE NAME] to the plagiarism detection and prevention system Turnitin, which compares submitted documents against documents on the Internet and against student papers submitted to Turnitin at Syracuse University and at other colleges and universities. I understand that all assignments submitted for this class will become part of the Turnitin.com reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of such papers.”
To view the policy in its entirety, please visit: Academic Integrity: Expectations and Policy.
ATTENDANCE POLICY (including Absence Notification)
Attendance in classes is expected in all courses at Syracuse University. It is a federal requirement that faculty promptly notify the university of students who do not attend or cease to attend any class. Faculty will use Early-Semester Progress Reports and Mid-Semester Progress Reports in Orange SUccess to alert the Registrar and Financial Aid Office on non-attendance. For more information visit:
If a student is unable to participate in-person or virtually for an extended period of time (48 hours or more), the student may request an absence notification from their home school/college Dean’s Office or the Dean of Students Office. Instructors will be notified via the “Absence Notification” flag in Orange Success.
Barnes Center at the Arch (Health, Counseling, etc.) staff will not provide medical excuse notes for students. When Barnes Center staff determine it is medically necessary to remove a student from classes, they will coordinate with the Dean of Students Office case management staff to provide appropriate notification to faculty through Orange Success. For absences lasting less than 48 hours, students are encouraged to discuss academic arrangements directly with their faculty.
Additional information may be found at Dean of Students Office: Absence Notifications.
BLACKBOARD LEARNING MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
Syracuse University recognizes the importance of teaching and the use of appropriate teaching materials to successful student learning. The Blackboard Learning Management System is a key instructional technology tool that enables Syracuse University instructors to engage in transformative teaching and learning, both for face-to-face and online courses. All faculty, staff and students at Syracuse University can access Blackboard using their University NetID. Course access is granted through an integrated data feed with the MySlice student information system. This integration automatically generates course sites and enrollments for all officially recognized courses each semester. Student access to Blackboard class page is activated when the instructor makes the course “available”.
Information Technology Services ensures the optimal performance of the Blackboard system by overseeing system access, account creations, system operations, user training and technical support. Additional information about Blackboard is available on Answers Blackboard; alternatively, you can contact Information Technology Services by sending email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 315.443.2677.
Accessible Blackboard Content
Syracuse University is using Blackboard Ally, a tool to help enhance the usability and accessibility of course documents in the Blackboard learning management system. Ally provides students with multiple accessible formats of the original document so they can select the best one that fits their unique needs. Currently, Ally offers accessible versions of Portable Document Format (PDF) files, Microsoft Office files (Word and PowerPoint), images and uploaded HTML files. Students will see a dropdown menu to the right of each document. From this dropdown menu, they can select one or more Accessible versions to download and use.
Additional information on the Blackboard Ally tool is available on Answers Blackboard Ally; alternatively, you can contact Information Technology Services by sending email to email@example.com or calling 315.443.2677.
Captioning Online Synchronous and Asynchronous Content
Syracuse University offers both Blackboard Collaborate Ultra and Zoom for online synchronous course meetings, whether from a University facility or off-campus location. Both web-conferencing services enable students to log in from their Blackboard course and offer the option to have live-captioning functionality as required by the Center for Disability Resources.
Syracuse University recently adopted Kaltura, which also is integrated with Blackboard, for video creation and hosting in support of teaching and learning. Both Zoom and Kaltura services include post-recording automatic speech recognition captioning for content, which not only helps to improve comprehension but also allows the individual to remediate text errors before making the prerecorded content available. Also, the automatic captioning in Kaltura will make it possible to ask all students to add and then remediate the captions of their videos. A captioned video could be a requirement of their video submissions.
Additional information about Zoom and Kaltura is available on Answers – Teaching and Learning. Alternatively, you can contact Information Technology Services by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 315.443.2677.
DISABILITY SYLLABUS STATEMENT
Syracuse University values diversity and inclusion; we are committed to a climate of mutual respect and full participation. There may be aspects of the instruction or design of this course that result in barriers to your inclusion and full participation in this course. I invite any student to contact me to discuss strategies and/or accommodations (academic adjustments) that may be essential to your success and to collaborate with the Center for Disability Resources (CDR) in this process.
If you would like to discuss disability-accommodations or register with CDR, please visit Center for Disability Resources. Please call (315) 443-4498 or email email@example.com for more detailed information.
The CDR is responsible for coordinating disability-related academic accommodations and will work with the student to develop an access plan. Since academic accommodations may require early planning and generally are not provided retroactively, please contact CDR as soon as possible to begin this process.
Furniture may be placed in your classrooms for specific use by students with disabilities. This furniture is generally labelled with signs that request that it is not to be moved per the Center for Disability Resources. Students with disabilities rely on this furniture to remain where it is placed within the classrooms.
Note that some students may be accompanied to classes by a service animal. Students are not required to provide prior notice of this to the University. If it is not readily apparent that the student is disabled, students can be asked two questions, do you have this animal due to a disability and what tasks does it perform for you? Emotional Support Animals are different than services animals and are typically only approved to reside in a student’s housing location/room.
DISCRIMINATION OR HARASSMENT
The University does not discriminate and prohibits harassment or discrimination related to any protected category including creed, ethnicity, citizenship, sexual orientation, national origin, sex, gender, pregnancy, disability, marital status, age, race, color, veteran status, military status, religion, sexual orientation, domestic violence status, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression or perceived gender.
Any complaint of discrimination or harassment related to any of these protected bases should be reported to Sheila Johnson-Willis, the University’s Chief Equal Opportunity & Title IX Officer. She is responsible for coordinating compliance efforts under various laws including Titles VI, VII, IX and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. She can be contacted at Equal Opportunity, Inclusion, and Resolution Services, 005 Steele Hall, Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY 13244-1120; by email: firstname.lastname@example.org; or by telephone: 315-443-0211.
Faculty who wish to include general language about discrimination or harassment in their syllabi may include the two preceding paragraphs. Faculty who wish to include language specific to sexual violence or harassment may include the following statement on their syllabi:
Federal and state law, and University policy prohibit discrimination and harassment based on sex or gender (including sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic/dating violence, stalking, sexual exploitation, and retaliation). If a student has been harassed or assaulted, they can obtain confidential counseling support, 24-hours a day, 7 days a week, from the Sexual and Relationship Violence Response Team at the Counseling Center (315-443-8000, Barnes Center at The Arch, 150 Sims Drive, Syracuse, New York 13244). Incidents of sexual violence or harassment can be reported non-confidentially to the University’s Title IX Officer (Sheila Johnson Willis, 315-443-0211, email@example.com, 005 Steele Hall). Reports to law enforcement can be made to the University’s Department of Public Safety (315-443-2224, 005 Sims Hall), the Syracuse Police Department (511 South State Street, Syracuse, New York, 911 in case of emergency or 315-435-3016 to speak with the Abused Persons Unit), or the State Police (844-845-7269). I will seek to keep information you share with me private to the greatest extent possible, but as a professor I have mandatory reporting responsibilities to share information regarding sexual misconduct, harassment, and crimes I learn about with the University’s Title IX Officer to help make our campus a safer place for all.
Syracuse University has established email as a primary vehicle for official communication with students, faculty, and staff. Emergency notifications, educational dialog, research, and general business correspondence are all consistently enhanced in institutions of higher learning where email policies exist and are supported by procedures, practice, and culture.
An official email address is established and assigned by Information Technology Services (ITS) for each registered student, as well as for all active faculty and staff members. All University communications sent via email will be sent to this address. Faculty and staff members must use the officially established University email address to communicate with students registered in their classes. Keep in mind that student records sent to a non-syr.edu email address may create a FERPA violation (See the complete policy at Syracuse University Email Policy).
THE FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) sets forth requirements regarding the privacy of student records. FERPA governs both the access to and release of those records, known as education records, and the information they contain. Under FERPA, faculty have a legal responsibility to protect the confidentiality of student records. For additional information about FERPA and Syracuse University’s FERPA policy, see Compliance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act or contact the Office of the Registrar (315.443.3535).
FAITH TRADITION OBSERVANCES
Syracuse University does not set aside days for any religious holiday. Students must notify instructors of any religious observances by the academic drop deadline. For any observances occurring before the academic drop deadline, students must notify faculty at least two academic days in advance. Please remind students in class of their obligations to do so. Students register their observances using MySlice. Suggested syllabus language:
Syracuse University’s Religious Observances Policy recognizes the diversity of faiths represented in the campus community and protects the rights of students, faculty, and staff to observe religious holy days according to their traditions. Under the policy, students are given an opportunity to make up any examination, study, or work requirements that may be missed due to a religious observance, provided they notify their instructors no later than the academic drop deadline. For observances occurring before the drop deadline, notification is required at least two academic days in advance. Students may enter their observances in MySlice under Student Services/Enrollment/My Religious Observances/Add a Notification.
Please remind students during the first week of classes about the notification deadline. Instructors may access a list of their students who have submitted a notification in the MySlice Faculty Center. Note that the religious observances icon will not appear unless a student in that class has submitted a notification.
ORANGE ALERT, Syracuse University’s crisis notification system, uses text messages, phone, and email alerts to provide rapid notification and instructions to members of the University community in the event of a crisis in progress. Crises could include an individual who is considered armed and dangerous, a hazardous materials incident, an explosion, or any other event in which there is an immediate threat of physical harm or death to campus community members. We recognize that faculty may consider activated cell phones as an interruption to their class. However, the public safety department recommends that faculty members leave their own cell phones on vibrate in order to receive text messages about a potential emergency situation. It is also recommended that faculty designate several class members to leave their cell phones on vibrate in order to receive notifications in the event of a critical incident. ORANGE ALERT contact information for students, faculty, and staff is drawn from the MySlice online information system; please keep your contact information current.
In the event of an emergency
- Phone emergency line from on-campus: 711
- Phone emergency line from off-campus: 315-443-2224
- Phone emergency line from cell phone providers ATT/Verizon/Nextel: #78
For complete details on emergency procedures, visit Syracuse University’s Emergency Guide.
POLICY ON FACULTY USE OF STUDENT ACADEMIC WORK
If you plan to use students’ submitted work for educational purposes (for example, in a later class or a subsequent semester), University policy requires that you notify students in your syllabus (Academic Rules, Student Academic Work). The Senate Committee on Curricula suggests the following language:
If you intend to use student work for educational purposes during the current semester:
Educational use of student work: I intend to use academic work that you complete this semester for educational purposes in this course during this semester. Your registration and continued enrollment constitute your permission.
If you intend to use student work for educational purposes in subsequent semesters:
Educational use of student work: I intend to use academic work that you complete this semester in subsequent semesters for educational purposes. Before using your work for that purpose, I will either get your written permission or render the work anonymous by removing identifying material.
If you are teaching a course in which students will complete a capstone project required for the degree:
As a generally accepted practice, honors theses, graduate theses, graduate research projects, dissertations, or other capstone projects submitted in partial fulfillment of degree requirements are placed in the library, University Archives, or department for public reference.
READING DAY and FINAL EXAM POLICIES
Reading days are designed to allow students the maximum opportunity to prepare for final examinations. Please do not schedule exams or required class meetings on any reading day. The exam schedule is designed to reduce scheduling conflicts, to provide adequate study time during reading days, and to comply with the New York State instructional contact hours requirements. Examination days and times are assigned by the Registrar and may not be changed. Exam times appear at Office of the Registrar: Final Exams Schedule and are available in MySlice/Faculty Center/My Exam Schedule. Early in the semester, you may wish to remind your students to check their own exam schedules in MySlice to detect any conflicts in time to resolve them.
Please note the exam time for your course and your planned use of the session in your syllabus. Requests for examination day/time changes are possible in extraordinary circumstances: please submit first through your chair and/or dean, the Registrar, and Office of the Provost for approval. Exceptional reasons do not include faculty or student preferences (even if there is concurrence for an earlier exam), nor as an accommodation for faculty or student travel.
Students may not attend, submit work, audit, or otherwise participate in courses without being officially enrolled. Instructors may not allow students to attend classes or submit work unless they appear on the official class list or are attending with instructor approval for the purpose of making up an Incomplete (I) grade in a prior term. Check your class roster regularly to ensure that everyone attending is registered for the class. Read the full policy in the Academic Rules section of the Undergraduate Course Catalog.
REQUIRED TEXTBOOKS and MATERIALS
The federal Higher Education Act of 1965 requires that the university provide information about required textbooks and materials to the college bookstore in a timely manner. At Syracuse University, faculty members directly inform the bookstore of their textbook and material requirements in time for students to obtain them prior to the beginning of the semester. Each semester the bookstore sends an information request to faculty members who are teaching in the subsequent semester. Please respond to this request in a timely manner and include in your syllabus the pertinent information (such as the ISBN) about required textbooks and materials.
SUPPORTING STUDENTS’ ACADEMIC SUCCESS
Orange SUccess is the platform used to help students succeed by providing timely feedback on academic progress. Timely feedback from faculty members can also enhance advisor efforts. Several opportunities will be provided to offer feedback to students:
- Early-semester progress reports (ESPR’s): Syracuse University tracks student “Non-Attendance” through Orange SUccess to comply with Title IV regulations. Faculty are expected to indicate students who “Never Attended” a class by the third week of the fall semester. Both the Registrar’s Office and the Financial Aid office are notified of the alerts. This allows students to make behavior changes before they fall too far behind. Note that the system provides immediate email notifications to students.
- Fall 2021 – The ESPR reporting period is Monday, September 13 through Friday, September 17.
- Spring 2022 – The ESPR reporting period is Monday, February 7 through Friday, February 11.
- Mid-semester progress reports (MSPRs): Provides an opportunity for early warnings about students’ academic progress and success. When you complete your MSPR report, it helps advisors and other student support staff to understand which students may be struggling. MSPRs deployed through Orange SUccess will follow the academic calendar dates. Faculty are expected to provide feedback for all students in their classes. Note that the system provides immediate email notifications to students.
- Fall 2021 – MSPR reporting period is Thursday, October 14 through Sunday, October 24.
- Spring 2022– MSPR reporting period is Tuesday, March 22 through Tuesday, April 5.
At any time during the semester, faculty may provide real-time feedback to students by raising early alerts in Orange SUccess. As mentioned above, this system provides immediate email notifications to students of alerts. Advisors can review attendance and progress indicators during advising meetings.
Some courses cover topics or include readings or other course materials that make some students uncomfortable. In some cases, students who have experienced trauma may be “triggered” and react adversely. If your course has the potential to elicit this reaction, please consider including the following statement on your syllabus.
Because of the nature of the topics covered in this class, the course readings or class discussions may generate intellectual and emotional discomfort. These responses are natural parts of intellectual growth. If, however, your emotional response becomes acute psychological distress (triggering), please communicate with me. I invite you to contact me if you have concerns in this regard.