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Student Code of Conduct

StraighterLine has an established Student Code of Conduct, the tenets of which apply equally to all students and their conduct, whether academic or administrative. By taking a course at StraighterLine, all students are expected to be familiar with this document and agree to comply with these policies. Students of StraighterLine agree:

  • that all answers to application or registration information questions are true and accurate.
  • to keep their passwords and other account access information for StraighterLine and its partners confidential.
  • that they are responsible for completing and submitting all graded assessments personally and will not permit another student, a family member, or other person to act on his or her behalf in the completion of graded work.
  • to report known violations of this code of conduct as soon as possible to Student Advisors.
  • to provide documentation to verify identity, answer questions designed to verify identity, and participate in biometric verification when requested by StraighterLine staff or 3rd parties prior to, during, and/or after examinations, assignment submissions, logins, during phone calls or any other interaction with StraighterLine’s staff, partners, or web-presence.
  • to undergo proctoring during examinations and timed writing exercises as required by StraighterLine, whether applied to all students or in student-specific circumstances.
  • that information, incidents, and data collected (including electronic device data) from student interactions with the StraighterLine’s web-presence may result in invalidation of course completion or denial of requested transcripts for courses where all activity cannot be verified to have been completed by the student enrolled.
  • to avoid actions that create a hostile or threatening environment for others.

Academic Honesty and Integrity

Honesty and integrity are as highly valued at StraighterLine as they are at all of StraighterLine’s partner colleges. This web-page details the StraighterLine Academic Honesty Policy as it pertains to examinations, proctoring, written papers and essays and general course interactions.

Academic integrity violations include all forms of academic dishonesty, including, but not limited to:

  • Cheating - Giving or receiving unauthorized assistance, attempting to give or receive such assistance, or using unauthorized materials in connection with the performance of any academic work. This includes providing your login to another individual to access content and complete work on your behalf.
  • Plagiarism - Use of another person’s work or ideas without proper acknowledgment of the source.
  • Fabrication - Falsification or invention of any information, citation, data, images, or documentation.
  • Collusion - Helping or allowing another student to commit any act of academic dishonesty.

Plagiarism, cheating, or other types of academic integrity and policy violations may constitute in immediate failure of the assignment in question. Deliberate or sustained violations will result in automatic failure of the course and could result in a student being removed from all current enrollments and services without refund. StraighterLine reserves the right to audit any and all student work for potential cheating, and require additional proctoring/monitoring of students whose accounts have been flagged for suspicious behavior.

Identity Verification

StraighterLine works hard to verify student identity to ensure that the student who registers is the student who completes the course, requests a transcript, and receives credit for their completed courses. Identity verification processes also signal that the academic policies of our organization are aligned with the practices of higher education, this lends our courses--and your earned credit--legitimacy and authenticity, which is valuable information for both our current and potential partners, and other institutional recipients of a StraighterLine transcripts. Please understand that Identity Verification systems are not designed to be roadblocks to your academic progress; rather they are put in place to provide our partners, and your future college, with the confidence and validity that you are the capable and trustworthy student who successfully completed the coursework.

Identity verification includes, but is not limited to, out-of-band processes (calling/texting a number and verifying student information), embedded question verification (answering questions based on publicly available information about the student), biometric verification, passive activity monitoring, analysis of voluntarily-provided electronic device data, and account comparison against established publicly available networks (such as social networks) to StraighterLine’s authentication system or proctoring services.

Plagiarism

All written student work is evaluated against industry-leading plagiarism detection software; by taking a course through StraighterLine, students agree that all required papers, essays, and written work may be subject to submission to plagiarism software for textual similarity review and detection of plagiarism. Plagiarism software compares student work to several sources including other student work, public websites, various institutional archives, the Internet, and the Global Reference Database.

This information is reviewed and interpreted by trained staff members to evaluate whether or not a submission violates the Academic Honesty Policy. In the event that a violation is verified, the student will be subject to actions detailed in the Sanctions section of this Student Code of Conduct below.

Examinations Policies

StraighterLine’s requirement for all final exams to be proctored was adopted November 1, 2012. For more information about taking examinations at StraighterLine please refer to this information regarding Examinations and Assessments in the StraighterLine FAQs.

Use of the following resources, services, and aids during this exam is strictly prohibited by the StraighterLine Student Handbook:

  • Printouts of previous exams, in their entirety or in part, or navigating to previous exams through the LMS,
  • Additional texts or reference materials not listed within the course syllabus,
  • Search engines (Google.com, Ask.com, Yahoo Answers, etc.),
  • Question and answer sites,
  • Study sites,
  • Tutoring,
  • Forums,
  • Chat applications,
  • Landline or cellular phones,
  • Or any other resources, services or websites not explicitly detailed as permitted in the exam detail spreadsheet or authorized by a StraighterLine staff member in writing

Investigation of Violations

Staff of StraighterLine and its partners review student work and identify possible violations of the Academic Honesty Policy using plagiarism detection software, Identity Verification records, user-generated electronic device data, and other tools.

In the event that the Student Code of Conduct has been violated, staff will, at a minimum, notify the student via their account email. StraighterLine additionally may suspend student accounts, prevent transcripts from being processed, or take other actions as deemed appropriate until the student is once again in “good standing” with StraighterLine. Any actions required of a student to be once again in “good standing” will be relayed to the student via email or phone. During the investigation process, StraighterLine may impose any additional penalties at its discretion. If further infractions are discovered, StraighterLine reserves the right to remove students from courses and cancel their account. (No refunds will be made available.)

Sanctions

The following sanctions may be levied in reaction to students violating the policies laid out in this Student Code of Conduct:

  1. Written Warning: Students will be notified in writing via email (to the email address on file within our student records) of further or pending discipline as a result of their behavior or actions using the StraighterLine course management system.
  2. Academic Hold and grade reduction (Assignment): Students may have a hold placed on their account and receive a grade reduction or zero for a specific assignment preventing that course from being eligible for transcript. The student may be required to resubmit assignments or retake examinations in order to sufficiently meet requirements and remove holds.
  3. Grade reduction (Course): Students may receive a grade reduction or zero for a course requiring that course to be retaken and free of any recurring or additional policy violations in order to be eligible for a transcript.
  4. Restriction: Violations of the Student Code of Conduct may result in the immediate removal from StraighterLine’s learning management system and restrictions to any of StraighterLine’s affiliate websites.
  5. Revocation of Transcript: Violations may result in the rescission of a transcript already granted and sent to a university, college, or organization (including ACE).

Appeals

Any student charged with a violation of the Code shall have the opportunity to appeal. The appeals procedure shall provide both substantive and procedural fairness for the student or student organization alleged to have violated the Code and shall provide for resolution of cases within a reasonable period of time.

To submit an appeal, the student must send an email to the Student Advisor including the following information:

  • The student's account of events;
  • Any additional materials or evidence that may substantially alter a decision.

The Director of Academics, a Student Advisor, and one additional SL staff member will review the appeal and render a decision on the appeal within 30 days. The result of the appeal review will be provided to the student via the email address on file in the student’s account and is final.

All documentation concerning a question of student conduct and the academic honesty policy will be added to a student's records, including original submissions, alleged plagiarism sources, grades, partner reviews of information, appeals, email conversations, and any other supporting materials.