Nine graduate credit hours is considered a full-time student load. Graduate students should be aware that for some state and federal Title IV financial aid programs, funding as a full-time student requires either twelve credit hours or nine credit hours plus a graduate assistantship.
The credit hour is the course unit of credit, representing the satisfactory completion of one class period per week for one semester. A course having three class periods a week will, therefore, earn three credit hours. Studio and laboratory class periods earn one credit hour for each two hours of attendance unless otherwise indicated.
Regular attendance at classes is obligatory. A student may be dropped from a course for poor achievement due to excessive absence and, if dropped after the deadline for dropping courses, will receive a final mark of E.
Enrollment in Undergraduate Courses
A graduate student may enroll in undergraduate courses, but may not receive graduate credit for those courses unless the undergraduate courses are designated as dual enrollment courses. The level of courses may be identified by the following:
||First year graduate courses
||Advanced graduate courses
Seniors who need nine hours or fewer to graduate may petition for combined enrollment if they meet the terms and conditions outlined on the Petition for Approval of Combined Enrollment Form.
The student’s total class load cannot exceed twelve credit hours unless permission is requested by the student’s advisor and approved by the Dean of Graduate Studies. The total number of graduate credits an undergraduate student is allowed to enroll in prior to receiving the bachelor’s degree is six. (Students are billed the undergraduate tuition rate.) These six credits count toward the total of nine hours allowed prior to admission to a program. The completed enrollment form with signatures from the student’s advisor and department chair must be submitted to the Graduate Office, 606 Culkin Hall, for final approval.
Letter grades are used for the final evaluation in all courses. The use of plus or minus grades is optional with the instructor. The grades and an interpretation of the quality of work follow:
||Consistently distinguished ability to understand work and interpret subject.
|B+, B, B-
||An above average knowledge of the subject and an acceptable ability to use the materials of the course.
|C+, C, C-
||Acceptable command of the subject although weak in some areas. Below required average but passing.
||Unable to grasp concepts, and inferior in several ways with regard to skills, ability and comprehension. Failing grade.
||Incomplete indicates that the student has not completed all of the course requirements for reasons beyond the students’ control. See Completion of Incomplete Grades
||A mark of IP (in process or progress) may be submitted by an instructor for students enrolled in thesis courses, research projects, courses in which the scheduled work extends beyond a single semester, and for courses in which a form of evaluation from off-campus is missing (e.g. GST courses, field placements or departmental internships). A mark of IP may be carried on a student’s transcript for a maximum of 6 semesters (without requesting extensions). At the end of the sixth semester, a grade must be submitted, or the IP automatically becomes an E grade unless an extension is requested by the instructor.
||The grade of W is used when a student petitions to withdraw from a course after the last day to drop a course. See Course Withdrawal Policy.
||Satisfactory. The S grade is interpreted on a graduate level to be the equivalent of a B or better.
||No grade transcripted this semester
||Instructor did not submit a grade
Audit Mode, will not count in attempted, passed or earned hours or GPA
Quality Point System
||Quality Points for Each Credit Hour
No other grades carry quality points.
Completion of Incomplete Grades
Incomplete grades become E grades automatically if the incomplete grade is not completed by the end of the sixth week of the following semester.
The spring semester is considered the “following semester” for incomplete grades from the fall semester or winter sessions. The fall semester is considered the “following semester” for incomplete grades from the spring semester and summer sessions. This is true whether or not the student is in attendance at the College. Exceptions apply only under the following circumstances:
When a faculty member requests an extension because the nature of the course does not allow for the removal of the “I” grade in only one semester (e.g. thesis courses, research projects).
When the student requests an extension with the approval of the pertinent faculty member for (a) a prolonged illness that can be documented with medical records or (b) absence due to active military service.
Under any of the above mentioned circumstances, the request for an extension must be submitted by the faculty member prior to the “sixth week of the following semester” deadline.
Repeating C and E Grades Courses
If a course for which a C+, C, or C- or E grade was earned is to be repeated, it must be repeated at Oswego in order to have the hours and quality points reflected in the student’s cumulative index at Oswego. If, however, the student elects to repeat the course at an institution other than Oswego, then the previous semester hours and previous C or E grade earned are not lined out in the Oswego transcript record, and are used in calculating the student’s cumulative grade point average.
Prior approval for off-campus study (for any institution other than Oswego) must be obtained from the student’s academic advisor. The student must submit to the advisor the course description and an Approval of Transfer Credit Form. Only grades of B or better are eligible for transfer credit consideration. Upon completion of the course taken off-campus, an official transcript must be submitted to the Graduate Office.
NG Graded Courses
Students expelled or suspended as a result of disciplinary actions will have an NG notation in the place of a grade on every course for which they are registered at the time of the expulsion or suspension, and the credits will count in the total attempted credits. The NG notation will become a permanent part of the students’ academic records (transcripts). Students with NG grades need to apply for readmission and have the dean of students’ approval before they can register again at Oswego. If the student is readmitted to the College, the courses with NG can be repeated; the NG notation, however, will remain part of the student’s academic history. For more information, review the full Transcript Notation Policy in the student handbook.
The instructor of record has the responsibility to assign/change the final grade for the course. The purpose of the appeal process is to ensure that college policies have been followed and that the treatment of a student has been fair and consistent with guidelines established in the course syllabus.
The first step in the resolution of any dispute between a student and an instructor concerning an academic matter should be that the student meets with, or makes a determined effort to meet with, the instructor in order to discuss the problem. Most often, the dispute can be resolved through such discussion between faculty and student; should it not lead to a satisfactory resolution, the student may further pursue an appeal process.
The following describes the steps and deadlines for such an appeal process:
- This process begins with a written appeal letter to the chair of the department offering the course. The written appeal must be submitted no later than the end of the sixth week of the following semester. (the spring semester is considered the “following semester” for the fall semester and winter sessions; the fall semester is considered the “following semester” for the spring semester and summer sessions). The student is encouraged to seek a mentor, their advisor or any other member of the faculty and staff, to assist in the appeal process.
- Within a week of the receipt of the student’s written appeal, an acknowledgment will be sent to the student by the chair. The department chair will need time to look into the issue(s) raised by the student. The chair’s evaluation may involve review of course records, communications between the faculty and the student, or any other document offered by the student or the faculty member deemed pertinent to the case. The discovery process may also require face to face meetings, phone conversations, or email communications between the chair and the student.
- The student should expect a written response to the appeal within two weeks of submitting the appeal unless circumstances delay the conclusion of the case. If the appeal is denied, the written response by the chair must outline the reasons.
- If the student is not satisfied with the outcome of the review from the department chair, he or she may then appeal to the dean of Graduate Studies. This is where the role of a mentor becomes most critical as the student’s appeal to the dean must appropriately offer responses to the written reasons of denial of the appeal by the department chair. The process described in step 2 applies, except that the student will have two weeks to submit a written appeal to the dean. There would be the same set of expectations regarding acknowledgment of receipt of the appeal letter and deadlines to review and respond to the student by the dean.
- Written response from the dean concludes the grade appeal process.
In the event that the faculty member who had assigned the final grade is not available to consider the student’s appeal, the chair of the department responsible for offering the course shall assign a qualified faculty member to review the merits of the appeal in place of that original instructor. This faculty member assigned to review the case will have the authority to change the grade. This exception is only exercised in extraordinary cases where the faculty member, for example, is no longer working for SUNY Oswego and is not responding to the student’s appeal or queries from the department chair or the dean as they review the case.
A person may be permitted to audit courses without credit providing the instructor offering the course determines that the person has an acceptable reason for auditing, that the person has sufficient academic background to benefit from the course, and that there is room in the class. The extent of an auditor’s participation in class is determined by the instructor. A Permission to Audit Form, signed by the instructor, should be submitted to the Office of the Registrar during the ADD Period. Audited courses will transcript with a grade of “AU” which does not accumulate credits nor compute in the grade point average.
Recognizing the commitment of the College to the senior citizens in this geographic area, the College has established the following guidelines for senior citizens who desire to audit any credit course given on or off the College campus. For purposes of this policy, a senior citizen is defined as a person 60 years of age or older.
A senior citizen is permitted to audit courses without credit if the instructor of the course determines that the person has an acceptable reason for auditing, that the person has sufficient academic background to benefit from the course, and that there is room in the class. The extent of an auditor’s participation in class is determined by the instructor. A Permission to Audit Form, available in the Office of the Registrar, signed by the instructor, should be submitted to the Office of the Registrar during the ADD Period. Audited courses will transcript with a grade of “AU” which does not accumulate credits nor compute in the grade point average. It is also understood that the audit privileges will not regularly be extended in all studio and laboratory courses.
There is no fee or any charge levied by the College for the audit privilege. Text books or other related materials may be purchased at the prevailing student price.
Noncredit courses may not be audited as they are not state supported. Senior citizens may, of course, register for such courses upon payment of the regular fees.
A student in a graduate degree program must complete at least 21 credit hours of resident credit. In some instances, the graduate program coordinator, advisor or the dean of the Division of Graduate Studies may expect more than the required 21 hours in residence.
Transfer of Graduate Credit
Graduate students matriculated into a master’s program at SUNY Oswego may transfer up to nine credit hours of coursework to their degree program. A maximum of three hours of coursework from institutions other than SUNY Oswego may be applied to post-baccalaureate certificate of advanced study program. For post-master’s advanced certificates of study, see program advisor.
- Only courses with grades of A and B (no B-) are transferable to a degree or certificate program. This includes non matriculated work taken at Oswego, as well as course work taken at other accredited institutions. Transfer credit grades from another institution will not be included in the computation of the graduate student’s grade point average. Grades of S and P in graduate level courses are interpreted as the equivalent of B or better.
- If after being admitted to a degree program a student wishes to take courses at another institution, the student must obtain prior approval from an advisor and Graduate Studies before enrolling in off-campus study. The “Approval of Transfer Credit for Coursework Taken at Accredited Institutions other than Oswego” form is available from the Graduate Studies or department offices. The completed form must be accompanied by a course description from the catalog of the other institution. Upon course completion, an office transcript must be sent to Graduate Studies.
- Graduate students may transfer graduate credits that were taken prior to matriculation in the SUNY Oswego program, or those that are taken during the completion of their SUNY Oswego program (see Approval for Off-Campus Study). All graduate students interested in pursuing transfer credit should discuss their options with their advisor.
Prior Learning Assessment
Some graduate students have acquired skills and knowledge through non-academic means, such as work experience, professional training, or military service, that may be equivalent to graduate-level college credit. Prior learning assessment (PLA) is a formal process of evaluating graduate students’ non-academic learning to determine if the skills, knowledge, and dispositions learned meets the graduate learning outcomes, standards, and requirements of a SUNY Oswego graduate-level course within the student’s graduate training program.
Students who wish to pursue PLA must be able to provide evidence of graduate-level learning that is aligned with graduate courses within the graduate degree program. To explore options for a formal evaluation of PLA, students should seek advice from their graduate academic advisor or department chair.
SUNY Oswego offers students the opportunity to earn Microcredentials, which are discrete educational programs that allow graduate students to gain relevant skills that are needed in today’s workforce. Microcredentials differ from a formal graduate degree or certificate program, and offer students the opportunity to develop skills that differentiate them from their peers, personalize their learning and professional development through credit or non-credit bearing learning opportunities, and gain skills to ensure they remain prepared for the work of tomorrow within their professional field.
Courses completed more than seven years before the term in which the degree is awarded may not be used for credit toward the advanced degree. In the event that attendance has been interrupted by service in the Armed Forces, exceptions may be made by the dean of the Division of Graduate Studies. Applicable courses included in earned master’s or doctoral degrees may be exempted from the seven-year limit and applied to a CAS if approved by the CAS program director and dean of the Division of Graduate Studies. Decisions will be based on whether past courses meet prevailing scholarship and objectives of current courses.
Catalog Curricular Requirements
A student is permitted to graduate under the program of study in effect at the time of admission provided that the student’s attendance at the College is not interrupted by an absence of more than two academic years. If a student’s attendance is interrupted by an absence of more than two academic years, the student will be required to graduate under the program of study in effect at the time of readmission to the College. Approved off-campus study in overseas academic programs, internships and the visiting student program is considered study in residence.
The maximum number of Independent Study credits permitted in a program is determined for each program by the department in which it is housed. An independent study cannot be offered for a course that is being offered in the same semester. Please consult the particular program summary for specific information. To initiate a study a student must prepare a proposal to be submitted to a prospective advisor who is a full-time instructor.
Independent studies may take one of several forms that may include but are not limited to an in-depth study through readings, independent project, a series of case studies, or a research study. The student’s proposal should include a clear statement of purpose, outcomes, number of credit hours sought, and method of study. The advisor will provide a clear statement of how the independent study will be supervised and assessed. Copies of the proposal are to be signed and held by the student, the advising professor, and the chair of the department in which the independent study occurs. Students will earn a letter grade for each independent study. Entries on the student transcript will be labeled “Independent Study in…”
After the drop period concludes, a student may withdraw from a course in progress through the last day of instruction. Note that the drop period extends through the last day of instruction during winter and summer sessions (see Winter and Summer Session FAQs for more details about the drop process for those sessions).
A student may initiate a withdrawal by completing the Course Withdrawal Form in myOswego. The form requires the course instructor to provide the last date of attendance (LDA) and then the withdrawal must be approved by the student’s graduate advisor and the dean of the Division Graduate Studies. Non-matriculated students who do not have an assigned advisor will follow the same process but will not need a graduate advisor’s approval. Your withdrawal date determines your tuition liability (see Student Accounts Withdrawals and Drops for details).
Appropriate fee(s) will be assessed.
A grade of W will appear on the transcript. This grade is not used to calculate a GPA, but the hours are counted as hours for which the student was enrolled that semester (i.e., attempted hours), but no credit is earned for the course.
Last Date of Attendance (LDA): Federal regulations in 34 CFR 668.22(I)(7)(i) provide clear guidance regarding attendance that includes information useful in establishing the LDA, even in the case of asynchronous online courses. The date of when the student engaged in any of the bulleted activities or a similar activity can be used for establishing the LDA.
- Physically attending a class where there is an opportunity for direct interaction between the instructor and students;
- Submitting an academic assignment;
- Taking an exam, an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction;
- Attending a study group assigned by the school;
- Participating in an online discussion about academic matters; and
- Initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a question about the academic subject studied in the course.
Withdrawal from the College
A graduate student seeking to withdraw from the College should email the Graduate Studies Office (email@example.com) to make arrangements.
If the college withdrawal is confirmed during the semester drop period, the courses will be removed from the transcript. A grade of W will be recorded on the transcript for any courses in progress if the college withdrawal happens after the drop period concludes for the semester. Course instructors will provide the last date of attendance for the student in their courses.
A student who wishes to be considered for re-entrance at a later date should contact the Graduate Studies Office (also see Time Limit on Credit and Catalog Curricular Requirements for further details related to completing your degree after leaving the college for a period of time).
Admission to the Degree Candidacy
Some graduate programs require students to apply for candidacy to continue in the program through graduation. For the graduate programs in which candidacy is required, the student will be responsible for filing for degree candidacy status at the midpoint of the student’s program, typically 12-18 hours of program course work taken at Oswego. To qualify for candidacy, the student must possess an overall cumulative average of 3.0 or better, and students in professional education programs with a field of concentration in any of the academic disciplines must maintain the B average in that concentration. There may also be additional requirements in other programs. The general process for applying for candidacy is as follows:
When a degree student has completed 12 to 18 credit hours of the program, the student will apply for candidacy in Degree Works. The completed application for candidacy is sent to the department for review, and the decision is returned to the Graduate Office, who will notify the student of the candidacy decision.
The academic department establishes the requirements for attainment of degree candidacy status and will inform the student of those requirements. In each instance, the student is expected to meet the established departmental standards through the aforementioned review.
After departmental consideration is completed, a statement regarding the student’s status of candidacy for a degree is transmitted by the department to the Graduate Office and the student.
Failure to meet candidacy requirements results in termination from the program.
Some programs have additional requirements for the attainment of degree candidacy. Please consult the program coordinator for these requirements.
The Oswego guidelines for preparation of theses and projects are available in the departmental offices. Students are responsible for adherence to these guidelines when preparing a thesis or graduate project.
It is the recommendation of the Division of Graduate Studies that graduate students also archive their theses/capstones/projects to the SUNY Open Access Repository (SOAR).
Completion of Graduate Degree Programs
The graduation requirements for candidates for advanced degrees are as follows:
- Each graduate degree student must maintain an academic average of B in all course work pertaining to the student’s degree program. Students in professional education programs with a field or concentration in any of the academic disciplines must maintain the B average in that concentration. Grades of C must be balanced by grades of A. Failure to achieve the required average will cause the student to forfeit the student’s status as a degree candidate. A student may not exceed three courses beyond the established program to achieve the necessary B average. Courses selected beyond the required program must be done with the approval of the program advisor. A student may, through the student’s advisor, submit a petition to Dean of Graduate Studies to repeat a maximum of two courses in which a C+, C, or C- grade was earned. If permission is granted, it is understood that the second grade will be used in computing the student’s grade point average. Note that the first grade remains on the student’s transcript, although it is not used in computing the grade point average.
- A candidate for the advanced degree must culminate the program by satisfactorily accomplishing a final evaluation administered by the department in which the candidate’s graduate study has been centered. This may be a comprehensive or intensive examination. It also may be any form of oral or written examination, or combination of examinations appropriate to departmental requirements. Arrangements for the final evaluation are initiated by the department chair. A candidate for the advanced degree in professional education will be evaluated by the department associated with the professional area of study although the candidate may be expected to demonstrate competency in his or her academic concentration, if one exists. The satisfactory completion of all thesis and independent study requirements must be endorsed by the appropriate department and the Graduate Office.
- It is the final responsibility of the student to file an application for the advanced degree and/or certificate. Students file for graduation online at www.myOswego.oswego.edu or contact the Graduate Office. The following schedule will apply:
||On or before February 15
||Up to May 1
||On or before February 15
||Up to July 15
||On or before October 1
||Up to December 1
- If for any reason the student does not meet the graduation date applied for, the student must contact the Graduate Office.
- All candidates for advanced degrees are invited to participate in the commencement ceremonies. Students who complete their programs in May and August attend the May commencement. Graduate students who are able to certify to the Graduate Office that all requirements will be completed in August may participate in the preceding May commencement. Students who complete their programs in December attend the December commencement.
Final program checkout is initiated by the filing of the diploma and/or certificate application.
*Applicants who file after the COMMENCEMENT PROGRAM Deadline Date must realize that final program processing will be conducted later for their records. Therefore transcript verification of the awarding of the degree and/or certificate may be delayed. The actual mailing of the diploma and/or certificate will be made at the earliest possible date.
Frequency of Course Offerings
Each course listed in this catalog has a designation indicating the marking period when it is normally taught. Due to the dynamic nature of the College’s academic programs, these designations should be used only as guides for when any particular course will be offered. Consult the myOswego student information system for specific and up-to-date information. Note that all of the courses listed in this catalog will not necessarily be offered during the academic year covered by the catalog.
Absence from Class (Religious Beliefs)
The following statement regarding absence from class because of a student’s religious beliefs is taken from State Education Law, paragraph 224a.
- No person shall be expelled from or be refused admission as a student to an institution of higher education for the reason that he is unable, because of his religious beliefs, to attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirements on a particular day or days.
- Any student in an institution of higher education who is unable, because of his religious beliefs, to attend classes on a particular day or days shall, because of such absence on the particular day or days, be excused from any examination or any study or work requirements.
- It shall be the responsibility of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to make available to each student who is absent from school, because of his religious beliefs, an equivalent opportunity to make up any examination, study or work requirements which he may have missed because of such absence on any particular day or days. No fees of any kind shall be charged by the institution for making available to the said student each equivalent opportunity.
- If classes, examinations, study or work requirements are held on Friday after four o’clock post meridian or on Saturday, similar or makeup classes, examinations, study or work requirements shall be made available on other days, where it is possible and practicable to do so. No special fees shall be charged to the student for these classes, examinations, study or work requirements held on other days.
- In effectuating the provisions of this section, it shall be the duty of the faculty and the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to exercise the fullest measure of good faith. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to any student because of his availing himself of the provisions of this section.
- Any student, who is aggrieved by the alleged failure of any faculty or administrative officials to comply in good faith with the provisions of this section, shall be entitled to maintain an action or proceeding in the supreme court of the county in which such institution of higher education is located for the enforcement of his rights under this section.
- As used in this section, the term “institution of higher education” shall mean schools under the control of the board of trustees of the State University of New York or of the board of higher education of the city of New York or any community college.
Hours of Operation
Generally administrative and departmental offices operate from 8 AM to 4:30 PM weekdays except for holidays. Some administrative offices remain open on weekends by appointment. Academic buildings generally open by 7 AM and close by 10 PM weekdays except for certain buildings, such as Penfield Library, which have more flexible hours. Some academic buildings are open on weekends. During specific holiday periods and between semesters the residence halls and dining halls are not open. Administrative offices close at 4 PM during the summer.
Specific information is published in the Official College Calendar and all-campus email announcements.
Canceled Classes Due to Weather
To find out if classes are canceled because of inclement weather on the main Oswego campus, members of the college community have several options: check www.oswego.edu, the SUNY Oswego website; call 312-3333, the SUNY Oswego Information Line; listen to radio and television; or, in residence halls, see digital signage notification or check with the front desk.
Members of the college community may receive direct notification as well, if they have signed up to receive college alerts through NY-Alert. Students indicate their preferences through myOswego under personal information. Faculty and staff enter their contact information by logging on to the employee portal on www.suny.edu, the SUNY system website.
Classes will proceed as scheduled unless official announcements of cancellation are made. When classes are canceled, faculty and commuting students are advised not to come to the main Oswego campus.
Among the TV and radio stations making this college’s class cancellation announcements are TV Channels 3, 5, 9 and 10 in Syracuse, the WRVO Stations (FM 89.9 to 91.9 throughout Central Upstate New York); WWTI Newswatch 50 in Watertown; and iHeartMedia radio stations in Syracuse (WSYR AM 570, Y94 FM 94.5, etc.) and Rochester (WHAM 1180, etc.).
The public announcement of class cancellations only occurs when the entire campus of thousands of students and faculty are affected. Faculty members wishing to cancel their own classes should follow the same procedure used when they are ill. Faculty teaching classes at locations other than the main Oswego campus should follow the weather closing policy governing the class site and inform students how to find out if their class is canceled.
The college does not close when classes are canceled. Under the state’s regulations, only the governor has the authority to close a state agency such as SUNY Oswego. Unless the governor closes the college, employees who choose not to come to work or to leave work early are required to charge their time. The only exception is for instructional faculty when classes have been canceled.
Oswego Academic Integrity Policy
At the State University of New York at Oswego (SUNY Oswego, the College), academic integrity on the part of all students, faculty, and staff is essential to individual growth and development, and the overall health of our campus community. When academic dishonesty occurs, it has a negative effect on individual success and devalues the education process and academic environment as a whole. Failure to adhere to the standards of academic integrity affects not just individual students but entire courses and the institution as a whole.
Any form of academic dishonesty is a serious concern, and as such, students who are found to have violated this policy may be subject to penalties including, but not limited to, reductions of assignment grades, failure of courses, notations on official transcripts, and suspension or expulsion from the College.
Statement on Academic Integrity
At SUNY Oswego, we are committed to maintaining rigorous intellectual standards and the highest level of academic integrity. As leaders and role models, faculty and professional staff must adhere to the highest standards of academic integrity in scholarship and professional practice. The College endeavors to foster an environment and culture in which students adhere to these same standards that will extend beyond their time at SUNY Oswego.
Academic integrity at SUNY Oswego is guided by the following three principles:
- all members of the College community should be held to the highest standards of academic integrity and personal responsibility;
- expectations for academic integrity should be clearly articulated, as should the consequences for violation of these standards; and
- all members of the College community are entitled to due process when their academic integrity is called into question.
Definitions of Plagiarism, Fabrication or Falsification, Cheating, and Copyright Violation
Acts of academic dishonesty can take many forms. Examples include, but are not limited to:
Plagiarism is the practice of deliberately or inadvertently taking someone else’s work or ideas, in part or in full, and passing them off as one’s own, in text or other mediums. Plagiarism of any kind, including taking from either published or unpublished material, is contrary to established ethical practices. All members of the College are expected to acknowledge the intellectual work of others. In some cases, plagiarism may also involve copyright violations (see Copyright Violation).
Intentional plagiarism is the deliberate act of representing the words, ideas, or data of someone else as your own without providing proper attribution to the author.
Inadvertent plagiarism involves the non-deliberate use of someone else’s words, ideas, or data without proper attribution. Inadvertent plagiarism usually results from a failure to follow established rules for documenting sources or from simply being careless in research and writing. However, as this is a failure in doing one’s due diligence, academic penalties may be applied even in the case of inadvertent plagiarism.
Self-plagiarism is a unique type of plagiarism that may not be immediately apparent. Self-plagiarism is when prior portions, or the entirety, of a student’s own previous work is presented as new, original work. This covers the submission of the same work in multiple courses, and the re-submission of previous work in the same class. Unlike intentional and inadvertent plagiarism, this behavior may be allowable with the permission of the instructor. If a student has permission to reuse work, they should cite the original authors, not their own prior work.
Examples of plagiarism include but are not limited to:
- copying word-for-word from sources without acknowledgment;
- citing work from sources, but doing so incorrectly;
- restating or rewording of material without acknowledgment (N.B. The purpose of paraphrasing is to enhance clarity. It does not just involve minor shifts in wording, and still requires acknowledgment);
- blending your own ideas with those from another source without acknowledgment;
- planning to commit an act of plagiarism; and
- committing self-plagiarism without permission.
Fabrication or Falsification
Fabrication or falsification is a form of academic dishonesty in which someone invents or distorts the origin or content of information cited.
Examples of fabrication or falsification include but are not limited to:
- citing a source that does not exist;
- misrepresenting having conducted interviews in research or journalism or misrepresenting the content of interviews;
- attributing ideas and information not included in the source;
- citing a source as supporting a position it does not support;
- citing a source that does not appear in the reference list;
- listing a source in the citations/bibliography section which was not utilized in preparing the work;
- intentionally distorting the meaning or applicability of data;
- inventing data or statistical results;
- feigning an illness or other event to delay an exam or assignment;
- changing or altering grades or other official educational records, such as adjusting already submitted or graded work, or adjusting community and internship work hours;
- misrepresenting identity on an exam, assignment or attendance activity; and
- planning to commit an act of fabrication or falsification.
Cheating is an attempt to use unfair means to gain an advantage during an examination or on an assignment which gives the appearance of having the knowledge or a skill that an individual has not actually obtained.
- Examples of cheating include but are not limited to:
- copying from another person’s work from an examination or an assignment;
- allowing someone to copy from an examination or an assignment;
- using unauthorized materials such as cheat sheets, smartphones, solutions manuals, test bank solutions, etc.;
- collaborating on an examination or assignment without approval from the instructor;
- obtaining, purchasing, selling or sharing exams, assignments or answers to assessments;
- working on an examination or assignment beyond time limits;
- planning to cheat.
Copyright is a form of intellectual property law that protects original works of authorship including, but not limited to: texts, images, photographs, illustrations, sound recordings, dramatic works, music, and video. The copyright holder is guaranteed the exclusive rights to perform, display, reproduce, and distribute the work as well as to make derivative works. Currently, these rights are protected for the life of the author plus 70 years. Copyright violations occur either when one uses media in websites, blog posts, videos, papers, etc. without securing permission (usually in the form of a license) for the specific use or when the use does not fall under the “fair use” clause of copyright law. Many classroom uses of copyrighted materials fall under fair use, but not all (see Penfield Library’s guide to fair use for specific details).
Examples of copyright violation include, but are not limited to:
- uploading course materials provided by instructors, including assignment sheets and study guides, to websites like Chegg.com and Coursehero.com;
- using a photograph made by a professional photographer without the license or permission to do so, even it it is of yourself, and even if it is on your public facing personal website or social media account;
- including an illustration with a Creative Commons BY license in a presentation without including attribution;
- staging a public performance without the appropriate permissions including royalties and licenses, etc.
- sharing copyrighted material (such as videos or music) on a site such as YouTube, Vimeo, or peer-to-peer networks;
- creating and distributing t-shirts with a meme that you found online without the appropriate permission/license; and
- downloading a copy of a font installed on a lab computer to use on a personal computer.
Faculty, Student, and Staff Responsibilities
Faculty, students, and staff have a shared responsibility to maintain academic integrity, which includes being knowledgeable of SUNY Oswego’s policy and reporting incidents. Information regarding the prevention of academic dishonesty is available through Penfield Library. All members of the campus community are required to abide by the Academic Integrity Policies, both as outlined in this document, and in any course specific policies. It is the responsibility of each student to make a prudent choice when they become aware of a violation. Students are encouraged to report academic dishonesty to the faculty member, their advisor, their associate dean, or to Student Conduct, directly or through the online reporting system.
Instructors are required to include a statement concerning academic integrity in their course syllabus or comparable course information documents, and should provide students with a link to the full policy. Additionally, faculty must note any situations that might be unique to their coursework and are not covered under this policy, and describe how such situations would be handled.
Students are required to familiarize themselves with the policy, and with any additional instructions given by their faculty member.
Potential Penalties for Academic Integrity Violations
Violations of the Academic Integrity Policy can result in substantial penalties. There is, however, an important distinction between academic evaluation (e.g., reduction in grade, additional work) and disciplinary action.
Instructors have the authority to make academic judgments relating to their students’ work, and to make decisions in the interests of furthering their students’ education.
Additionally, the University, acting through its formal processes, may discipline a student. Violations that reach this level require coordination between the faculty member, the Associate Dean, and Student Conduct to ensure students their due process rights.
Levels of Violation
This is a broad framework to assist instructors in determining the severity of a violation of the Policy. Note that which Level a violation falls into may depend on the level of a course. For example, omitting a citation in a 100 level course may only be a Level 0, but doing the same in a graduate level course may be a Level 1 violation.
Level 0 - This represents a minor error that has no, or a minor academic penalty, and is usually considered a learning experience. A common example of this might include editorial errors such as incomplete quotations and forgetting to properly reference material from a cited source. These should still be reported even if no action is taken so that potential patterns of similar behavior will become apparent.
Level 1 - This represents a substantial violation of the policy, but is still generally an unintentional error, possibly reflecting a more serious misunderstanding of the policy and related requirements. Examples of Level 1 violations might be substantial but unintentional citation errors, or submitting work completed in one course to satisfy an assignment in another course. This may also be used for repeated Level 0 violations within the same course.
Level 2 - This represents an unintentional, but major violation of the policy, or a violation that was made intentionally. Generally violations at this level will only directly involve one or two students. This may also be used for repeated Level 1 violations within the same course. Examples of Level 2 incidents might include:
- feigning illness to avoid an exam
- giving aid on assessment activities without specific permission to do so, or seeking and receiving such aid
- two students sharing research on a single topic to complete individual assignments in different courses
- falsifying attendance (such as signing in for another student who is not present)
- the use of unauthorized notes or other means of cheating on an assessment
- the uploading of general course learning materials (such as course slides) to external websites without explicit permission from the instructor.
- minor plagiarism (one or two short excerpts of improperly cited material), etc.
Level 3 - This represents an egregious violation of the policy that was made intentionally, and/or involved multiple students collaborating to violate the policy. At this level, careful consideration should be given as to whether only an academic penalty is appropriate, or if a case should also be referred to Student Conduct. This may also be used for repeated Level 2 violations within the same course. Examples of Level 3 violations might include:
- major plagiarism, where the majority or entirety of a work having been copied
- the uploading of specific course assessment materials (such as assignments or tests, with or without answers) to external websites without explicit permission from the instructor.
- the purchasing of any materials for submission as your own work (including the purchase of exam keys)
- the sale of work for others to submit as their own (even if the sale is to students that are not part of SUNY Oswego)
- identity falsification for the purposes of completing assessments (such as having someone take an exam in one’s place or vice versa)
- stealing academically related materials (such as stealing a copy of test key from an instructor or stealing another student’s work out of a dropbox for the purpose of copying it or submitting it as the student’s own work)
- working with one or more other students with the intention of violating this policy (such as multiple students meeting as a group to work on a take home exam without instructor permission to collaborate)
- altering/forging college documents or records
Penalties for Violations
Faculty should refer to the following Rubric in determining an appropriate level of sanction depending on the severity of the violation of the policy. If a faculty member wishes to take action outside of these recommendations, they should provide an explanation for the deviation in their Academic Integrity Violation Incident Report report.
|No Academic Penalty
|Correction and Resubmission of Assessment
|Assignment of Extra Work Related to the Violation
|Reduction of Assessment Grade
|No Credit on Assessment
|Reduction of Final Course Grade by No More Than One Letter Grade
|Immediate Reduction of Final Course Grade to 0/Letter Grade E
|Referral of Student to Student Conduct
Additional Actions Related to Violations
Separately from the Violation Process within a course, whenever a Violation is entered into the University System, a check will be made to see if the student has any previously recorded violations. The Associate Dean of the student’s home school will be notified of any repeated violations and may initiate additional actions, including but potentially not limited to the following:
- If the student has no prior violations recorded, a record of the violation is retained by the University. This information will not be shared outside of the University.
- If the student has more than one level zero violation, a letter of warning will be issued to the student, including a recommendation to campus resources.
- If this is the student’s first violation of the Policy, and the instructor has determined that the penalty will result in a Reduction of Assessment or Course Grade, the violation is reported for record retention and a letter of warning will be issued to the student, including a recommendation to campus resources.
- If this is the student’s second violation of the Policy and the instructor has determined that the penalty will result in a Reduction of Assessment or Course Grade, the violation is reported for record retention, and direct interventions to remedy the behavior will be mandated.
- If the Associate Dean determines that there is an ongoing pattern of violations, either at a high or low level, a student will be referred to Student Conduct to address the behavior.
Investigating and Resolving Academic Integrity Violations
An instructor who suspects a student of academic dishonesty should observe the following process:
- The instructor should work to gather information and evidence related to the suspected incident. The student does not need to be notified at this stage, but all relevant material should be gathered and maintained until the matter is resolved.
- Upon gathering evidence, if the instructor determines that evidence supports that a violation has occurred, they should send a request to meet with the student via Oswego email. The meeting should be prompt, private, and informal. If at all possible, this meeting should be held synchronously (in person or virtual) or via phone conference. The student must be given the opportunity to explain the incident from their perspective prior to a penalty being imposed. Regardless of the means of communication, there is an understanding that the privacy of both parties will be maintained. During these communications, the student and instructor may each choose to have a witness present for the discussion.
The instructor is obligated to make a reasonable effort to allow for a student explanation, but if a student is unresponsive to attempts at communication or otherwise is unable or unwilling to provide an explanation, the instructor should proceed to Step 4, and should detail what attempts to contact the student were made.
- An instructor should evaluate all information obtained, including information shared during the student meeting, against relevant elements of both the academic Integrity Policy and the Course Syllabus to determine if a violation has occurred. If a violation is substantiated, instructors should refer to the Levels of Violation and Penalties for Violations sections of this policy for guidelines on assigning appropriate penalties.
- Instructors must complete the Academic Integrity Violation Incident Report, which will record as much information about the violation as possible, and the preferred academic penalty.
- The Academic Integrity Violation Incident Report will be sent to the relevant Department Chair or a person designated by the relevant Associate Dean. A) In the case of a Level 0 to Level 2 Violations that does not result in an Academic Penalty of Immediate Reduction of Final Course Grade to E, the Chair/Designee will review and approve the action. The Chair/Designee may request to review the incident and penalty with the faculty member prior to approval. B) When a Level 3 Violation is reported, or when a Level 2 Violation results in an Academic Penalty of Immediate Reduction of Final Course Grade to E, the case is automatically elevated to Student Conduct and the Associate Dean for evaluation. The instructor should pause the academic penalty process to coordinate further actions with Student Conduct.
- For Level 0 to Level 2 Violations that are not elevated, the student will receive written notification detailing the instructor’s findings and the assigned academic penalty.
- Students may appeal their academic penalties at the end of a semester using the Grades Appeal Process. Once the time for appeal has expired, or an appeal is undertaken and concluded, the process is considered concluded.
Student Conduct Procedures
- When a Level 3 Violation is reported, or when a Level 2 Violation results in an Academic Penalty of Immediate Reduction of Final Course Grade to E, the case is automatically elevated to Student Conduct and the Associate Dean for evaluation on whether additional action should be taken. The instructor should pause the academic penalty process to coordinate further actions with Student Conduct.
- Under these conditions, the student is prohibited from withdrawing from the course; a hold is placed on the student’s account until the case is resolved.
- Student Conduct will initiate the conduct process with instructor and student participation. Once this process is begun, the following forms of resolution are available for the accused student: A) Resolution Agreement: the accused student accepts responsibility for the violation(s), acknowledges their role or involvement in the incident, and waives any rights to contest the allegations or the sanctions. The instructor and the Director of Conduct are not to revisit the question of whether the alleged policy violations occurred, but will consider appropriate sanctions (academic and non-academic) based on the acceptance of responsibility, the nature and severity of the incident and the charge(s) under consideration. The student will have three days to sign a mutual agreement which immediately resolves the violation and voluntarily waives their appeal rights. B) Adjudication: The accused student denies responsibility and chooses to contest the allegations. The Director of Conduct will refer the case to the appropriate forum of resolution based on the severity of the violation. The accused student is assumed to be not-responsible concerning the charges which have been leveled against them, and the University bears responsibility to provide convincing evidence. The student is permitted to attend classes and have further work graded until resolution of the matter is final. i) Administrative Conference: The student, instructor, and the Director of Student Conduct convene and discuss the circumstances surrounding the incident; sanctions from this conference will not rise above disciplinary probation and the student receives an XE grade on their transcript. If the student disagrees with the academic penalty, they may request an appeal through the grades appeal policy, potentially on an accelerated timeline. ii) Hearing: If the nature of the violation could likely result in the suspension or expulsion of the student, a hearing board will convene with the participation of the student and instructor, to determine a final resolution. If the outcome involves suspension or expulsion, the student may request an appeal through the University’s Conduct Process.
Time Limitations on Pursuing Violations
Upon the discovery of a suspected academic integrity violation, an instructor should take action as soon as possible. There is no official time limit for the discovery of, or penalties related to, an academic integrity violation. However, an instructor should consult the appropriate Associate Dean in the case that the discovery of a suspected violation happens after grades have been submitted and released to the student.
Notations on Student Academic Transcript
XE - A student that has received the academic penalty of Reduction of Final Course Grade to 0/Letter Grade E may have an XE place on their transcript for the relevant course grade. This indicates that the failing grade was given due to an Academic Integrity Violation.
The XE designation may only be applied by Student Conduct. If a faculty does not engage with Student Conduct after deciding to give an Immediate Reduction of Final Course Grade to E, the student transcript will only show an E.
Petition for Forgiveness - A student may petition for removal of ‘XE’ on the transcript after two academic semesters of acceptable performance and no further behavioral or academic infractions. Forgiveness will not be considered earlier than one year after the date of adjudication through the conduct process. Expulsion for academic dishonesty will be permanently noted on the student’s transcript.
NR - If the incident occurs and cannot be resolved before grades have to be submitted, a student will be given an NR in the course as a temporary, neutral grade.
Course Withdrawal Policy
Students who are found responsible for a violation of the Academic Integrity Policy and are facing the potential of a failing grade in the course will not be permitted to withdraw from the course in which the violation occurred; a hold is placed on the student’s account until the case is resolved.
Student Appeal Process
All students have the right to appeal if a faculty member assigns an academic penalty the student believes is undeserved by using the Oswego Grade Appeals Process. No additional action will be taken against a student that pursues an appeal:
- If the academic penalty does not result in the Immediate Reduction of the Final Course Grade to 0/Letter Grade E, a student may appeal after the final course grade is assigned at the end of the semester.
- If the Immediate Reduction of the Final Course Grade to 0/Letter Grade E penalty is imposed students may begin the Oswego Grade Appeals Process upon receiving notification of the assigned penalty from the University.
If a student chooses to exercise their right to appeal, the Instructor will be notified and the student will be able to attend class and have work graded until the appeals process is concluded.
If a student is referred to Student Conduct in addition to any academic actions, and the outcome involves suspension or expulsion, the student may request an appeal through the University’s Conduct Process.
Federal Higher Education General Information Systems (HEGIS) Codes
The following graduate degree programs are offered by Oswego. The HEGIS codes are listed to allow cross references between Oswego and other institutions. HEGIS code numbers may be requested by state and federal offices when filing for loans or awards.
The graduate programs offered by each academic component are listed below. Consult the appropriate heading in this catalog for program requirements.
Federal Higher Education General Information Systems (HEGIS) Codes