Aug 11, 2022  
2013-2014 College Catalog 
    
2013-2014 College Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academic Information



Academic Calendar


Shelton State offers classes in the fall (August to December) and spring (January to May) terms as well as the summer term (May to August).  Full term classes in the fall and spring last for 15 weeks plus a final exam week.  The full term in the summer lasts for 10 weeks.  Split term classes are also offered, and those are accelerated compared with the full term, meeting for half of the semester, but with longer class durations.  

General Requirements for Academic Credentials


The College offers certificate programs that entail 30 or more semester hours and short-term certificate programs that include less than 30 semester hours.  The Associate in Arts Degree and the Associate in Science Degree are designed for students who plan to transfer to a college or university for the junior and senior years to complete a baccalaureate degree.  The Associate in Applied Science Degree and the certificate programs are designed for students who plan to seek employment immediately upon earning the credential.  These degrees and certificates are included on the official Academic Inventory of Shelton State Community College maintained by the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education.

Certificate Programs


A student may earn a certificate or short-term certificate upon satisfactory completion of the requirements of a specific program as specified by the College in accordance with policies of the State Board of Education.  To receive a certificate, a student must do the following:              

  1. satisfactorily complete an approved program of study.
  2. complete at least 25% of the total semester credit hours required in the program at Shelton State Community College.    

Short-Term Certificate General Requirements

Each short-term certificate requires up to 29 credit hours.  See the specific programs listed in the next section of the catalog for details on the requirements of each short-term certificate.

          AREA I:     Written Composition      0 - 3 Credit Hours

          AREA II:    Humanities and Fine Arts     Not Required

          AREA III:   Natural Science and Mathematics     0 - 3 Credit Hours

          AREA IV:   History, Social, and Behavioral Sciences     Not Required

          AREA V:    Concentration and Electives     Up to 29 Credit Hours

Certificate General Requirements

Each certificate requires up to 60 credit hours.  See the specific programs listed in the next section of the catalog for details on the requirements of each certificate.

AREA I:    Written Composition     3 Credit Hours

  1. COM 100  or ENG 101 

AREA II:   Speech, Humanities and Fine Arts     3 - 6 Credit Hours

  1. SPH 106 , SPH 107 , or SPH 116 
  2. Remaining hours to come from Humanities and Fine Arts.               

AREA III:  Natural Science and Mathematics     6 Credit Hours

  1. One Computer Science (Data Processing) course (Two are preferred) or demonstrated literacy skills, or the integration of computer proficiencies within a required discipline specific course(s).

AREA IV:  History, Social Science, and Behavioral Sciences     Not Required

AREA V:   Concentration and Electives     18 - 48 Credit Hours

  1. Orientation to College, ORI 101       1 Credit Hour

AA, AS, or AAS Degree Programs


A student may earn the Associate in Arts (AA), Associate in Science (AS), or Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree upon satisfactory completion of the requirements of the specific program as specified by Shelton State Community College and the State board of Education.  To receive an AA, AS, or AAS Degree, a student must do the following:

  1. satisfactorily complete an approved program of study, including prescribed general education courses.
  2. complete at least 25% of the credit hours required for the degree at Shelton State Community College.                 

Associate in Applied Science Degree

Each AAS degree requires 60 - 76 credit hours.  See the specific programs listed in the next section of the catalog for details on the requirements for each degree.

AREA I:    Written Composition     3 Credit Hours

AREA II:   Speech, Humanities, and Fine Arts     6 Credit Hours          

  1. Students must complete three semester hours in speech, unless provisions for addressing oral communication competencies represent an integral module in required discipline specific courses(s).      
  2. Students must complete one course in Humanities and Fine Arts.  (Humanities and Fine Arts include the following:  Area/Ethnic Studies, Art and Art history, Foreign Languages, Humanities, Literature, Music and Music History, Philosophy, Ethics, Religious Studies, Theatre, and Dance.)

AREA III:  Natural Science and Mathematics     9 - 11 Credit Hours     

  1. One three credit hour course in mathematics
  2. One (preferably two) Computer Science (Data Processing) course(s) or a course in which computer proficiencies are integrated or the student must demonstrate computer literacy skills.
  3. In addition to mathematics, disciplines in the natural sciences include the following:  Astronomy, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Geology, Physical Geography, Earth Science, Physics, and Physical Science.
  4. Students enrolled as majors in health-related disciplines for which the AAS degree is awarded must take BIO 103  as the prerequisites for BIO 201 ,BIO 202 , and BIO 220 .

AREA IV:  History, Social, and Behavioral Science     3 - 6 Credit Hours

  1. In addition to history, the social and behavioral sciences include, but are not limited to, Anthropology, Economics, Geography, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology.

AREA V:    Concentration and Electives     29 - 58 Credit Hours

  1. Orientation to College, ORI 101       1 Credit Hour 

Associate in Arts or Associate in Science Degree

Students who plan to transfer to an Alabama four-year college and who are seeking an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree should obtain and follow a transfer guide from STARS (http://stars.troy.edu).  Please see the catalog section on STARS Approved Course List .  Students who plan to transfer to an out-of-state or private four-year college and who are  seeking an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree should obtain a catalog from the four-year institution, and with the assistance of an advisor, develop a plan of study appropriate for the student’s major at the accepting institution. 

Associate in Arts Requirements

AREA I:    Written Composition     6 Credit Hours

  1. ENG 101  and ENG 102                      

AREA II:   Humanities and Fine Arts     12 Credit Hours

  1. Students must complete a minimum of three semester hours in literature from the following courses: ENG 251 ENG 252 ENG 261 , ENG 262 , ENG 271 , or  ENG 272 .

NOTE:  Students must complete a 6 credit hour sequence either in literature or history.  The sequence in AREA II and AREA IV in literature or history should follow the sequence requirements for the student’s major and transfer plans (STARS Guide). 

  1. Students must complete three credit hours in the Arts from the following courses: ART 100 ART 203 ART 204 IDS 114 HUM 298 MUS 101 , or THR 120 .
  2. Students must complete 3 credit hours in Speech.
  3. Humanities and Fine Arts disciplines include, but are not limited to, Area/Ethnic Studies, Art or Art History, Foreign Languages,  Humanities, Literature, Music and Music History, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Speech, Theatre, and Dance.

AREA III:  Natural Science and Mathematics     11 Credit Hours

  1. Students must complete 3 credit hours in Mathematics at the Pre-Calculus Algebra or Finite Mathematics level or higher.
  2. Students must complete 8 credit hours in the Natural Sciences, which must include laboratory experiences as a significant component.  Disciplines in the Natural Sciences include the following:  Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Physical Geography, Earth Science, Physics, and Physical Science.

NOTE:  BIO 201  and BIO 202  cannot be used to fulfill the Natural Science requirement.

AREA IV:  History, Social, and Behavioral Sciences     12 Credit Hours

  1. Students must complete a minimum of 3 credit hours in history.

NOTE:  Students must complete a 6 credit hour sequence either in literature or history.  The sequence in AREA II and AREA IV in literature or history should follow the sequence requirements for the student’s major and transfer plans (STARS guide). 

  1. Students must complete 6 credit hours from among other disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences.  Social and behavioral sciences include, but are not limited to:  Anthropology, Economics, Geography, Political Science,  Psychology, and Sociology.

AREA V:   Pre-Professional, Pre-Major, and Elective Courses     19 - 23 Credit Hours

  1. Orientation to College, ORI 101      1 Credit Hour
  2. Microcomputer Applications, CIS 146       3 Credit Hours
  3. Remaining courses are appropriate to the degree requirements and major of the individual student and electives as required and delineated for four year colleges on STARS.     

Associate in Science Requirements

AREA I:    Written Composition     6 Credit Hours

  1. ENG 101  and ENG 102                      

AREA II:   Humanities and Fine Arts     12 Credit Hours

  1. Students must complete a minimum of three semester hours in literature from the following courses: ENG 251 ENG 252 ENG 261 , ENG 262 , ENG 271 , or ENG 272 .

NOTE:  Students must complete a 6 credit hour sequence either in literature or history.  The sequence in AREA II and AREA IV in literature or history should follow the sequence requirements for the student’s major and transfer plans.  (STARS Guide).

  1. Students must complete three credit hours in the Arts from the following courses: ART 100 ART 203 ART 204 IDS 114 HUM 298 MUS 101 , or THR 120 .
  2. Students must complete 3 credit hours in Speech.
  3. Humanities and Fine Arts disciplines include, but are not limited to, Area/Ethnic Studies, Art or Art History, Foreign Languages,  Humanities, Literature, Music and Music History, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Speech, Theatre, and Dance.

AREA III:  Natural Science and Mathematics     11 Credit Hours      

  1. Students must complete at least 3 credit hours in Mathematics   
    1. MTH 112, Pre-Calculus algebra, or
    2. a 3-4 credit hour course with a prerequisite of MTH 112  .  (If a four credit hour mathematics course is taken, 1 credit hour counts for Area V.

Students must complete 8 credit hours in the Natural Sciences, which must include laboratory experiences as a significant component.  Students must choose from the following courses:   BIO 103 , BIO 104 , CHM 111 , CHM 112 CHM 221 , CHM 222 , PHY 201 , PHY 202 , PHY 213 , PHY 214 .

AREA IV:  History, Social and Behavioral Sciences     12 Credit Hours

  1. Students must complete a minimum of 3 credit hours in history.

NOTE:  Students must complete a 6 credit hour sequence either in literature or history.  The sequence in AREA II and AREA IV in literature or history should follow the sequence requirements for the student’s major and transfer plans.  (STARS guide) 

  1. Students must complete 6 credit hours from among other disciplines in the social and behavioral sciences.  Social and behavioral sciences include, but are not limited to:  Anthropology, Economics, Geography, Political Science,  Psychology, and Sociology.

AREA V:   Pre-Professional, Pre-Major, and Elective Courses     19 - 23 Credit Hours

  1. Orientation to College, ORI 101      1 Credit Hour
  2. Microcomputer Applications, CIS 146       3 Credit Hours
  3. Remaining courses are appropriate to the degree requirements and major of the individual student and electives as required and delineated for four year colleges on STARS.     

Additional Recommendations/Requirements


Orientation

To encourage success in college, Shelton State requires all full-time students to complete Orientation to College, ORI 101 , during the first semester of enrollment; part-time students are required to complete ORI 101  prior to the completion of the first 12 credit hours.  Students enrolled in career technical programs must complete ORI 101  prior to the completion of the first 19 credit hours.  Exceptions to these guidelines include students who hold an associate degree or higher, who have successfully completed an equivalent course at another institution, who transfer with at least twelve credit hours with a grade point average of 2.0 or higher, who are transient, or who have been admitted to Practical Nursing or Associate Degree in Nursing.

Health

As a component of a well-balanced educational plan, Shelton State encourages students to include a course in health, Ecological Approach to Health and Fitness, HED 199 , or Personal Health, HED 221 , which transfers to most four-year institutions as an elective.

Work Keys

Shelton State students who finish technical programs with degrees or certificates complete a Work Keys assessment in order to document their skill levels and increase their employment and earning opportunities in West Alabama.  The goal of this assessment is to ensure that Shelton State students enter the workforce with the foundation needed to succeed. 

Placement into the Curriculum Tracks


Transfer Credit

Transfer coursework accepted for credit toward a certificate or degree from a regionally or nationally accredited institution or an Alabama College System institution with a minimum grade of (C) in the courses transferred must represent collegiate coursework relevant to the award, with course content and level of instruction resulting in student competencies at least equivalent to those of students enrolled in the College’s own undergraduate award programs.

General Principles for Transfer of Credit

  1. Transfer credit will be evaluated and recorded by the Registrar in the Office of Admissions and Records.
  2. Transfer students with a complete admission file will receive a notice that transfer credits have been evaluated and acceptable credits have been awarded based on their declared program of study. The admission file consists of a completed application form and transcripts from all postsecondary institutions attended by the student.
  3. Coursework transferred or accepted for credit toward an undergraduate program must represent collegiate coursework relevant to the formal award, with course content and level of instruction resulting in student competencies at least equivalent to those of students enrolled in the institution’s own undergraduate formal award programs. In assessing and documenting equivalent learning and qualified faculty, the College may use recognized guides which aid in the evaluation for credit. Such guides include those published by the American Council on Education, the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, and the National Association of Foreign Student Affairs.
  4. A course completed with a passing grade at other duly accredited postsecondary institutions will be accepted for transfer as potentially creditable toward graduation requirements.
  5. A transfer grade of “D” will only be accepted when the transfer student’s cumulative GPA is 2.0 or above at the time of admission. If the student has a cumulative 2.0 or above, the “D” grade will be accepted the same as for native students.
  6. A transfer student from a collegiate institution not accredited by the appropriate regional association or Council on Occupational Education may request an evaluation of transfer credits after completing 15 semester hours with a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or above.
  7. Only acceptable coursework that applies to the student’s declared program of study at the time of admission will be awarded. Students who change their program of study in subsequent terms must notify the Office of Admissions & Records of this change and request that any transfer credit that is applicable to the new program of study be evaluated and added to the student’s transcript. Students who transfer prior to being accepted into a program of study which requires special admission must request that all relevant coursework that applies to the student’s new program of study be reevaluated once the student has been accepted.
  8. Credit may be extended based on a comprehensive evaluation of demonstrated and documented competencies and previous formal training.

Initial Academic Status of Transfer Student

  1. A transfer student whose cumulative grade point average at the transfer institution(s) is 2.0 or above on a 4.0 scale will be admitted on Clear academic status.
  2. A transfer student whose cumulative grade point average at the transfer institution(s) is less than 2.0 on a 4.0 scale will be admitted on Academic Probation. The transcript will read ADMITTED ON ACADEMIC PROBATION.
  3. An applicant who has been academically suspended from a duly accredited postsecondary institution may be admitted as a transfer student only after following the appeal process established at the college for “native” students who have been academically suspended. If the transfer student is admitted upon appeal, the student will enter the institution on Academic Probation. The transcript will read ADMITTED UPON APPEAL-ACADEMIC PROBATION.

Credit Awarded Through Non-Traditional Means:  Prior Learning/Experiential Learning

Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Policies and Procedures

Shelton State Community College and The Alabama Community College System recognize that learning occurs in a variety of ways.  Individuals can develop mastery of course competencies through employment, training, and other experiences termed “prior learning”.  Credit can be awarded for prior learning when the skills that comprise courses (terminal objectives) are mastered to an acceptable degree of proficiency and the individual documents skill mastery.

Awarding Credit through Prior Learning Assessment

Credit for prior learning can be awarded only after the assessment of prior learning experiences and only for documented learning that demonstrates achievement of all terminal objectives for a specific course or courses. Course credit earned through prior learning shall be noted on the student’s transcript as having been awarded through PLA.

Credit for academic transfer courses awarded through PLA may only be awarded by examination or nationally recognized guidelines (AP, CLEP, ACT/PEP, DANTES, Challenge Exams, ACE PONSI/CREDIT, ACE/MILITARY). Credit for experiential learning (portfolio review) may not be awarded for academic transfer courses.

In the process of determining if credit can be awarded for prior learning, institutions shall charge students only for the cost of the PLA services and not for the amount of credit awarded. There shall be a charge of $25 for each portfolio review to assess experiential learning for credit. Documentation must be provided for each course for which credit through experiential learning is requested, and the $25 fee applies to each review of the documentation (e.g., individual is charged $50 if the person is seeking credit through experiential learning for two courses, and thereby requires portfolio reviews in relation to those two courses). Students seeking credit for academic transfer courses through examination or nationally recognized guidelines are not charged a fee for PLA or for credits awarded through PLA.

Not more than 25 percent of total credit required for any program may be awarded as a result of PLA. Credit awarded through PLA does not count toward the minimum of 25 percent of semester credit hours that must be completed at the institution granting the degree as referenced in State Board of Education policy 715.01. Before receiving credit through PLA for a course, an individual must meet enrollment requirements for the course. Credit may not be awarded twice for the same learning.

Prior Learning Assessment Procedures

  1. The student must enroll at the college and meet all admission requirements for the program in which course credit for prior learning is being sought.
  2. The student must obtain an application entitled “Application for Credit Awarded through Non-traditional Means: Prior Learning/Experiential Learning” from the Office of Admissions and Records and submit the completed form to the Dean of Academic or Technical Services.
  3. The Dean of Academic or Technical Services and the Registrar will determine if prior learning credit is available for the particular course(s) and determine the appropriate evidence that must be provided for awarding such credit. Portfolios and/or assessments should be used as prior learning assessment tools for awarding credit. Not all courses at Shelton State Community College are available for PLA credit.
  4. If it is determined that PLA credit can be awarded, the student must make arrangements with the Dean of Academic or Technical Services to determine what must be included in the applicant’s portfolio. In the portfolio assessment process, the Division Chair over a course for which credit for experiential learning is being sought, along with the Dean of Academic or Technical Services, shall evaluate the student’s work and training experiences in the program field and determine if the student should be considered for PLA. Evidence of experiential learning to be included in the portfolio should include a description of experiences and the skills learned from these experiences. The portfolio includes a brief life history, statement of individual’s career goals, description of experiences (work and non-work related) and related learning matched to courses for which credit is being sought, and any supporting documentation (e.g., licensures, certifications, continuing education units, training records, employer verification of tasks performed, and examples or demonstrations of skills possessed).
  5. The Division Chair must submit the recommendation to the Dean of Academic or Technical Services for approval.
  6. Portfolio assessment by itself may be used for PLA only when the following methods cannot be used: course challenge exams as determined by the Dean of Academic or Technical Services, College Level Examination Program (CLEP), American College Testing Proficiency Examination Program (ACT/PEP), Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Support (DANTES), American Council on Education’s Program on Noncollegiate Sponsored Instruction (ACE/PONSI), College Board Advanced Placement (AP) Program, American Council on Education College Credit Recommendation Services (ACE/CREDIT), or American Council on Education Military Program (ACE/MILITARY).

If approved, credit awarded through PLA will be included on the student’s transcript. Awarded credit will be designated by PLA.

Tech Prep Advanced Credit/Placement  

The West Alabama Tech Prep Consortium, which consists of Shelton State Community College and each of the county school systems from Bibb, Greene, Hale, Pickens, Tuscaloosa, and the Tuscaloosa City School system, has developed a formal articulation agreement. This agreement is designed to build upon the educational experiences begun at the secondary level in specific career occupations. To be eligible for this advanced credit/placement, the applicant must complete the following:

  1. be recommended by the applicant’s technical instructor for advanced credit;
  2. pass the high school course(s) which are to be articulated with at least a B average; 
  3. meet all requirements as established in the respective high school’s articulation agreement.

For questions concerning advanced credit/placement, contact the Office of Shelton State Community College’s Tech Prep Coordinator, 205.391.2415.

Compass Assessment

Course placement at the College is determined by the results of COMPASS®, the official assessment instrument used by the College.

Students must present picture identification and have an application for admission on file with the Office of Admissions and Records to take the COMPASS Assessment. COMPASS retesting is allowed under certain circumstances. The College reserves the right to assess a nominal charge for retesting. COMPASS scores are valid for three years. Students who enroll in a course without equivalent assessment scores may be withdrawn from the course by the College and may not qualify for a refund of tuition. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that all assessment requirements are met. Students requiring the Compass Assessment must complete the assessment prior to the established testing deadline posted on the College website and printed registration publications. The following students are exempt from the English and/or mathematics section(s) of the COMPASS Assessment:

  1. students who score 20 or above on the English section and/or 20 or above on the mathematics section of the ACT and enroll at Shelton State within three years of high school graduation;
  2. students who score 480 or above on the English section and/or 480 or above on the mathematics section of the SAT I and enroll at Shelton State within three years of high school graduation;
  3. students who have an associate degree or higher from a regionally accredited postsecondary institution (community, junior or four-year college);
  4. students who transfer degree-creditable college-level English or mathematics courses with a grade of C or better;
  5. students who have successfully completed certain developmental coursework at another Alabama College System school within the last three years;
  6. students who provide documentation of assessment (COMPASS or ASSET) within the last three years.

To be eligible for these exemptions, assessment scores and/or college transcripts must be on file with the Assessment Director.

ACT/SAT Policy

In lieu of assessment exam scores, course placement may also be assigned based on English, Mathematics, and Reading subtest scores as reported by ACT and SAT assessment, provided that the student is enrolling within three years of high school graduation. 

ACT SCORE

20 or higher in English and 20 or higher in Reading

SAT SCORE

480 or higher in Writing and 480 or higher in Critical Reading

PLACEMENT

ENG 101 

20 or higher in Reading 480 or higher in Critical Reading No RDG course
20-24 in Mathematics 480-570 in Mathematics MTH 100 
25-26 in Mathematics 580-610 in Mathematics MTH 110  or MTH 112 
27-28 in Mathematics 620-640 in Mathematics MTH 113  or MTH 120 
29-36 in Mathematics 650-800 in Mathematics MTH 125 
These scores are subject to change.

 Credit for Examination Performance

Credit by examination is available at Shelton State Community College. Not more than 25 percent of the total credit required for any program may be awarded in this manner, and such credit is not applicable toward the minimum of 25 percent of semester credit hours that must be completed at Shelton State Community College in order to earn a certificate or degree. 

College Preparatory Program

The Alabama State Board of Education (ASBE) has directed that each institution in the Alabama Community College System will offer a program of college preparatory instruction. This program includes the following features:

  1. Each college will require students to take a placement assessment upon admission to the college and prior to enrollment in an associate degree or college-level certificate program.
  2. Each college will require every student who enrolls in a college-level course in mathematics or language arts to take the prescribed placement assessment. (“Language arts” is defined as English, reading and composition.) At Shelton State Community College, COMPASS is the official placement assessment of the institution. Students taking the assessment satisfy this portion of the ASBE College Preparatory Program.
  3. Each institution will designate college preparatory courses in language arts and mathematics. These courses are not designed to transfer and do not count toward graduation as elective credit. At Shelton State Community College, these courses are as follows: Language Arts: ENG 092 , ENG 093 , RDG 084 RDG 085 ; Mathematics: MTH 090 , MTH 098 .
  4. Each student who scores below the established placement score on the designated placement assessment must enroll in the appropriate college preparatory course (or courses) and must remain enrolled in college preparatory instruction until the student demonstrates readiness for college-level work.

The maximum load for a student who is enrolled in two or more college preparatory courses is 13 semester hours.

Prerequisites and Corequisites

Students are required to complete prerequisites and satisfy corequisites for each course for which they are registered. Students who enroll in a course without completing course prerequisites and satisfying corequisites may be withdrawn from the course and assigned a grade of W by the College and may not qualify for a refund of tuition. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that all course prerequisites and corequisites are met.

NOTE: Prerequisite: a course or condition required prior to enrolling in another course. Corequisite: a course or condition that must be taken at the same time as another course, or in special circumstances, completed prior to another course.

eLearning

The purpose of eLearning education at Shelton State Community College is to extend our quality educational programs to learners beyond the seated classroom. They are designed for those who may not fit the profile of the traditional student. Responsibilities of career and family, distance from an educational institution, or the need for flexibility can make this type of learning an appropriate solution for educational achievement.

ELearning is not easier than the traditional classroom; in some ways, it is more difficult because it requires significant self-discipline and the ability to work independently. 

The College has developed an approved Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP):  Improving Student Success in Online Classes.  One component of the QEP is the requirement that students successfully complete a prerequisite class prior to enrolling for the online instruction.  The prerequisite class, ELO 100 , is non-credit, free, and online.  The completion of this class assures that the student has the basic skills required for potential success in online instruction.  

For additional information on eLearning and how to enroll, visit the College Web site, www.sheltonstate.edu.

Registering for Classes  


Maximum and Minimum Course Load

The student course load for a full-time student is 12 to 19 credit hours per semester. Twenty or more credit hours constitute an overload. A student course overload must be approved by the Dean of Academic or Technical Services. No student will be approved for more than 24 credit hours in any one semester for any reason. 

Drop/Add 

Students may make adjustments to their schedules only during the Drop/Add Period as defined in the College’s Academic Calendar. After this period, tuition will not be refunded for course(s) dropped if the student has other courses remaining within that term. Students should consult the semester Schedule of Classes for refund information. Students who wish to make an adjustment to their schedule during the published Drop/Add Period may do so by accessing the online student portal via the Shelton State Web site at www.sheltonstate.edu

Class Attendance    


Withdrawal Policy

Once classes begin for the respective term, students who wish to withdraw from a class or completely withdraw from school must officially withdraw on or before the date designated as the last day to withdraw for the semester. The last day to withdraw from any class is defined in the College’s Academic Calendar and occurs approximately 80% of the way through the term for the class (full semester or split term).  There will be NO withdrawals after this date. A student who withdraws prior to the published date will receive a grade of “W” regardless of the grade average at the time of the withdrawal and the “W” will be recorded on the student’s transcript.  Students who remain in the class after the last day to withdraw will receive the grade earned for the class. No withdrawals will be taken over the telephone or by email.  Failure to attend class does not constitute official withdrawal.  Students are unable to completely withdraw from all classes online and are required to meet with an advisor/navigator prior to withdrawing completely from Shelton State.  Students who wish to withdraw from some, but not all, classes in a given term are encouraged to meet with an advisor/counselor.  Students who are Pell recipients or receive veteran’s benefits must speak with a representative from the Office of Fnancial Aid before withdrawing from classes.  Grant awards can be reduced or cancelled if students do not complete classes successfully.  Withdrawing from any course has the potential to impact current and future financial aid opportunities.

NOTE: Pell recipients and/or those who receive veteran’s benefits must speak with a representative from the Office of Financial Aid before withdrawing from classes.  Grant awards can be reduced or cancelled if students do not complete classes successfully.

Class Attendance Policy

STUDENTS ARE EXPECTED TO ATTEND ALL CLASSES for which they are registered. Instructors are encouraged to keep a record of attendance for each class meeting.

CLASSES AT THE COLLEGE ARE TO BE HELD AS ANNOUNCED IN THE CLASS SCHEDULE. STUDENTS ARE EXPECTED TO ATTEND CLASS ON TIME AND ARE EXPECTED TO REMAIN IN CLASS UNTIL DISMISSED.

Students attending for less than 30 minutes or half the scheduled time for the class, whichever is greater, will be considered absent for that class meeting. Instructors are not required to give additional time to students who are tardy for tests or quizzes. Attendance the first day of class or at the orientation session for an eLearning class is essential; Instruction begins, the syllabus is distributed, room assignments are confirmed, attendance is recorded.  Financial aid will be adversely affected by absence the first day of class. When a student registers late, the classes missed from the first scheduled class date are counted as absences. If a student is unable to attend at least 80 percent of class meetings, regardless of the reason or circumstance, it is recommended that the student withdraw from that class before excessive absences interfere with the student’s ability to successfully complete the course.  Withdrawal from class or removal from the registration database can affect eligibility for federal financial aid. For additional information, contact the Office of Financial Aid, 205.391.2218.

The manner in which make up work, test(s), or assignment(s) will be given for excused absences shall be left solely to the discretion of the instructor. Possible acceptable, documented excused absences include representing the College in officially approved activities, military service, accidents, court appearances, illness of the student or illness of an immediate family member, or the death of an immediate family member. Work-related excuses, child-care issues, and/or travel will not excuse an absence. The student must submit appropriate documentation of extenuating circumstances to the instructor and make arrangements for any make-up work within one week of the last day covered by the excuse. It is the student’s responsibility to make arrangements with the instructor to make up missed work. Any missed material will not be re-taught by the instructor. IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE STUDENT TO KEEP A RECORD OF HIS/HER ABSENCES.

Attendance requirements in programs that lead to board licensure or certification may differ from this policy. Students should consult program policies and guidelines for details.

Absences for Approved College Activities

Absences for students participating in official College activities that have been approved by the President or his designee will be excused absences upon receipt of written notification from the Dean of Student Services and the appropriate sponsor. This notification will meet the following guidelines:

  1. Notification must be given to the instructor prior to the absence(s); and
  2. Notification must state the time frame of the activity including, specifically, the time for which the student must leave for the activity and when the student will return to campus. Students engaged in approved College activities are to be excused no more than 30 minutes prior to the beginning of the activity or 30 minutes prior to the latest time at which they must leave campus in order to arrive safely at their destination. It is the responsibility of each student engaged in approved College activities to make arrangements to complete any missed assignments, exams, etc., at a time convenient for the instructor. As much as possible, students should schedule classes on days and times which will not be affected by participation in official College activities so as to minimize their absences. A student participating in approved College activities should make every effort to arrange class responsibilities such as oral reports, speeches, recitals, and group work participation, around the schedule of approved activities so that no hardship is placed on other class members or the instructor. Instructors are not required to “re-teach” classes for students who miss class for any reason. Since many events are scheduled ahead of time, the Dean of Student Services and the sponsor of the activity may notify instructors at the beginning of the semester of all absences as long as the notification meets the guidelines above.

Course Syllabus

College instructors are required to provide a syllabus to each student enrolled in their courses.  The syllabus shall set forth the instructor’s expectations, policies, procedures, course content, course schedule, and other information that defines the requirements of the course for the student.  Upon receiving the syllabus, students are assumed to understand and abide by the expectations, policies, and procedures stated therein.  Students who have questions regarding the syllabus should contact the Dean of Academic Services, 205.391.3902, or the department or division chairperson.

Student Conduct Code

The publication of this Student Conduct Code documents the standard of conduct by which students and organizations are expected to abide. The full student handbook can be found at www.sheltonstate.edu. Students and organizations will be aware of the College Code and knowledgeable of the fact that they will be held accountable for compliance with its provisions. By enrollment and affiliation with the College, a student or organization neither relinquishes the right nor escapes responsibilities of local, state, or federal laws and regulations. The College is committed to maintaining an environment that contributes to its educational missions and the safety, health, and well being of all students and other persons on campus. Therefore, students and organizations are obligated to abide by the rules and policies established by the College.

It is assumed that students enrolling in the College are mature, have a desire for constructive learning, and are attending with that purpose in mind. Common courtesy and cooperation are expected of all students. Interference, injury, or the intentional attempt to injure or interfere with the personal or property rights of any person – whether a student, visitor, faculty, or staff member – or the College itself, is strictly prohibited.

 A. Application

The Student Conduct Code applies to individual students as well as formal and informal groups either involved in College related activities or functioning as official representative(s) of the institution.It is applicable to the behavior of students and organizations, both on and off the College campus, which is determined to be incompatible with the educational environment and mission of the College.

 B. Misconduct

The College expects the conduct of each student and organization to be in conformity with standards of common decency and decorum, with recognition of and respect for personal and property rights of others and the educational mission of the College. A student or organization may be disciplined and is in violation of the Student Conduct Code for any of the following:

  1. academic dishonesty;
  2. forgery, alteration, or misuse of College documents, records, or identification;
  3. issuance of worthless checks made payable to the College;
  4. failure to comply with the authority of college officials acting within the capacity and performance of their positions;
  5. violation of written College rules, policies, and regulations;
  6. obstruction or disruption of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary procedures, other College activities, or other activities on  College premises by either College or non-College persons or groups;
  7. destruction, damage, or misuse of College, public, or private property (The student or organization is responsible for any damage done to College property.);
  8. conduct in violation of federal or state statutes or local ordinances that threatens the health and/or safety of the College community or adversely affects the educational environment of the College;
  9. conviction of any misdemeanor or felony which adversely affects the educational environment of the College;
  10. obtaining college services by false pretenses including, but not limited to, misappropriation or conversion of College funds, supplies, equipment, labor, material, space, facilities, or services;
  11. hazing, i.e., any mental or physical requirement or obligation placed upon a person by a member of any organization, or by an individual, or by a group of individuals which could cause discomfort, pain, or injury, or which violates any legal statute or College rule, regulation, or policy.
  12. lewd, obscene, licentious, or indecent conduct or the verbal or written threat of such action against another person;
  13. lewd, obscene, licentious, indecent, or inappropriate dress;
  14. possession, while on College-owned or controlled property, of firearms, ammunition, explosives, fireworks, or other dangerous instrumentalities;
  15. possession, sale, and/or consumption of alcoholic beverages or non prescribed, controlled drugs on College property or at a student or College-sponsored function;
  16. unauthorized manufacture, sale, delivery, or possession of any drug or drug paraphernalia defined as illegal under local, state, or federal law;
  17. theft, accessory to theft, and/or possession of stolen property;
  18. filing a false report or knowingly making a false statement about or interfering with the investigation of any situation described in this conduct code and the annual campus safety and security publication;
  19. fighting, physical or verbal abuse, threats of violence, intimidation, and physical or mental harassment;
  20. trespassing or unauthorized entry;
  21. entering false alarms, tampering with fire extinguishers, alarms, or other equipment;
  22. publishing, aiding in publishing, circulating or aiding in circulating anonymous publications or petitions;
  23. disruptive devices such as tape players, radios, beepers, cell phones, or other electronic devices in the student center, hallways, lecture rooms, classrooms, library, or any other place which will interfere with the normal activity of the College;
  24. violations of the Sexual Harassment Policy;
  25. any form of gambling;
  26. disruptive or disorderly conduct which interferes with the rights and opportunities of those who attend the College to utilize and enjoy educational facilities.

Violations of the above will render a student subject to disciplinary action under the procedures which provide for adequate notice and a fair hearing as outlined in this handbook. Penalties for violations may include reprimand and probation, loss of privileges, suspension, expulsion, and other penalties which may be set forth in College regulations published in the student handbook.

Where there has been a serious violation of College regulations and a student’s continued presence will materially threaten the welfare of the College, the President’s designated representative, normally the Dean of Student Services or other College official, may immediately suspend the student. The student will be entitled to a hearing according to the regular disciplinary procedures.

 C. Misconduct Disciplinary Policy

Any case involving violation of published policies and regulations in this bulletin will be brought to the immediate attention of the Dean of Student Services, who will discuss the case with the student, attempting to arrive at a mutually satisfactory conclusion of the matter. If a satisfactory conclusion is not reached at this point, the student may appeal the case to the Student Services Action group.

The Student Services Action Group, or a similarly functioning group, is authorized to hear the student appeal and may choose to modify, uphold, or reverse the written recommendations of the Office of the Dean of Student Services in this case. It is important to note that in the chronology of events, the student receives a copy of these recommendations first in his/her initial meeting with the Office of the Dean of Student Services. His/her decision to appeal will be based on disagreement with these recommendations. After appeal to the Student Services Action group, the Office of the Dean of Student Services will ensure that the student is granted due process through the following steps:

  1. Written notice will be provided the student at least three (3) calendar days in advance of the hearing date. Further, the student will be given a list of witnesses and a copy of their statements or complaints, along with other evidence and affidavits which the college intends to submit against the student.
  2. The student is permitted to have counsel present at the hearing to advise him/her. The student may question at the hearing any witness who gives evidence against him/her. Attorneys are present in advising capacity only. The College appeal process will not be bound by Courtroom procedures.
  3. The student is permitted to hear the evidence presented against him/her and will be permitted the opportunity to present his/her own case, his/her version of the incident, and any exhibits, affidavits, or witnesses on his/her behalf.
  4. A full and complete record of the hearing will be made. Unless otherwise specified, a videotaped record will be used.
  5. The Student Services Action Group will provide a written decision to the student and the Dean of Student Services.  Final local responsibility for discipline is vested in the President of the College. Any disciplinary probation or suspension will be recorded on the student’s permanent record. The College seeks to guarantee that the fundamental principles of fair play are observed and to assure that no disciplinary action is taken on grounds which are not supported by substantial evidence. Conscious effort is made to assure that all of the College’s regulations are within the scope of the lawful missions of tax-supported higher education. It is recognized that it is not a lawful mission of the College to prohibit the exercise of a right guaranteed by the Constitution or a law of the United States. However, the President will take direct and appropriate action in any case involving the integrity of the College and the well-being of the students.

 D. Academic Misconduct Policy

This policy applies only to those violations of the Shelton State Community College student conduct regulations relating to academic dishonesty. 

Academic misconduct includes all acts of dishonesty in any academically-related matter and any knowing or intentional help or attempt to help, or conspiracy to help another student commit an act of academic dishonesty. “Academically-related” includes all instructional facets of the college, i.e., adult basic education, developmental education, transfer education, occupational/technical education, continuing education, and training for business and industry.

Academic dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, each of the following acts when performed in any type of academic or academically-related matter, exercise, or activity:

1.  dishonesty, such as cheating, plagiarism, or knowingly furnishing false information to the College;

    a. cheating – The College defines cheating as knowingly attempting to or actually acquiring or giving information fraudulently in order to influence performance on examinations and assignments. It also includes using or attempting to use during any class assessment unauthorized materials, information, study aids, or computer-related information including, but not limited to, the use of a cell phone or other electronic communication device. The use of a cell phone or other electronic communication device by a student during a class assessment without the express authorization of the course instructor shall constitute prima facie evidence of cheating. 

    b. plagiarism – representing the words, data, works, ideas, computer program or output, or anything not generated in an authorized fashion as one’s own. Plagiarism can be intentional or unintentional. All academic work, written or otherwise, submitted by a student to his or her instructor or other academic supervisor for a particular class, is expected to be the result of his or her own thought, research, or self-expression for that class. In any case in which a student feels unsure about a question of plagiarism involving his/her work, he or she is obligated to consult the instructor on the matter before submitting it.

   When a student submits work purporting to be his or her own, but which in any way borrows ideas, organization, wording, or anything else from another source without appropriate acknowledgment of the fact, the student is guilty of plagiarism. Plagiarism includes reproducing someone else’s work, whether it is a published article, a chapter of a book, a paper from a friend, or some file, etc.

l   Plagiarism also includes the practice of employing or allowing another person to alter or revise the work which a student submits as his or her own, whoever that other person may be. Students may discuss assignments among themselves or with an instructor or tutor, but when the actual work is done, it must be done by the student and the student alone.

    When a student’s assignment involves research in outside sources or information, he or she must carefully acknowledge what, where, and how he or she has employed them. If he or she uses works of someone else, he or she must put quotation marks around the passage in question and add an appropriate indication of its origin. Making simple changes while leaving the organization, content, and phraseology intact is plagiaristic. However, nothing in these rules will apply to those ideas which are so generally and freely circulated as to be part of the public domain. (Student Code of the University of Kentucky).

    c. Misrepresentation - falsifying, altering, or misstating the contents of documents or other materials related to academic matters, including schedules, prerequisites, transcripts, and medical or military excuses.    

2.  Penalties for academic misconduct can range from a reprimand to expulsion from the College.

3. A course instructor (or any other person who has reasonable cause to believe a student has engaged in an act of   academic misconduct) will report the matter to the appropriate dean (Academic Services or Technical Services). The instructor (or other person) will take no other action in the matter until a decision has been reached by the dean.

4. The dean will discuss the circumstances involved with the course instructor (and/or other appropriate persons) and review any pertinent materials in order to determine if a reasonable basis exists for believing that academic misconduct may have occurred. (If the case involves misrepresentation, as defined above, the appropriate dean may refer the matter to the Dean of Student Services).

5. If the appropriate dean concludes that there is a reasonable basis for believing an act of academic misconduct may have been committed, the dean will arrange a conference with the student. This conference will take place within fourteen working days (or as soon thereafter as may be practical) of the dean being notified of the possible academic misconduct.

6. Prior to arranging this conference, the dean will complete the following::

             1. provide the student with a copy of the Academic Misconduct Policy; and

2. provide the student with notice in writing that an issue of possible academic misconduct involving the student exists, such notice to contain a description of the academic misconduct which the student has been alleged to have committed; and

3. call the attention of the student to the following provisions of the Academic Misconduct Policy:

At an academic misconduct conference or hearing:

    a. The student is not required to make any statement at all regarding the matter under investigation.

    b. The student may make a voluntary statement if the student chooses to do so.

    c. The student has a right to present any evidence, supporting witnesses, and other information.

    d. The student has a right to be advised by anyone of the student’s choice. If the student is to be advised by legal counsel at the conference, however, the student must notify the dean of that fact at least five working days in advance of the conference or hearing so that College legal counsel may also be present at the conference or hearing.

7.  At the conference, the dean may act alone or in conjunction with a standing committee or an ad hoc committee appointed by the dean, but the dean will make the final decision.

8.  At the conclusion of the conference, one of three steps will be taken by the dean:

1.  The matter will be immediately dismissed if in the judgment of the dean the evidence presented is not convincing proof that the student engaged in an act of academic misconduct.  The student will be informed in writing that the matter has been dismissed and that no further action will be taken.  There is no appeal of a decision of immediate dismissal by the dean; or

2.  If the student makes a voluntary admission that the student committed the alleged academic misconduct, a penalty will be imposed by the appropriate dean.  In case of a voluntary admission of academic misconduct, the dean will be able to impose the full range of penalties as described in section B above.  The student will be given written notice of the penalty to be imposed within three working days after the conclusion of the conference; or

3.  If the matter is not dismissed and the student does not make an admission of academic misconduct, the dean will, within ten working days, decide if the student is guilty of academic misconduct, determine what penalty for academic misconduct will be imposed, and will notify the student by certified mail of the decision and the penalty to be imposed.  The dean will have the right to impose full range of penalties as described in section B above. 

In cases both of voluntary admission of academic misconduct and of the dean’s decision that academic misconduct has occurred, the dean will seek the advice of the course instructor (if a course instructor is involved) prior to assigning a penalty.  The dean, however, is not obligated to follow the instructor’s recommendation.  

9. The student also will be notified in the same certified mail that the student has fifteen (15) working days from the date of the mailing of the dean’s decision to appeal that decision. No penalty will be imposed until

1. there is a failure to file a timely appeal, or

2. a decision on the appeal has been reached.

10. The dean’s decision may be appealed to the Office of the President. This appeal must be in writing and addressed to the President.

11. The appeal to the President must be based on substantive grounds such as gross procedural errors, new evidence, or inconsistencies in the penalty assigned.

12. When the appeal is received in the Office of the President, the President (or a designated hearing officer) will hold a conference with the student and other concerned parties to discuss the reasons for the appeal. The President has the right to deny the appeal, and if the President denies the appeal, the appeal process will end. The President will notify the student in writing that the appeal has been denied and will give the student an explanation for that action.

13. If the President decides that the appeal is to be heard, the President (or the designated hearing officer) will convene a panel for that purpose. This panel will hear the appeal within thirty working days of the receipt of the appeal in the Office of the President. The panel will consist of a person designated by the President, a person designated by the Office of the Dean of Student Services, and a member of the faculty designated by the Curriculum Action Group. The faculty member must come from the instructional division in which the academic misconduct occurred. The dean shall not be a member of this appeal panel. If the academic misconduct is such that it is handled by the Office of the Dean of Student Services as described in Section D above, the Office of the Dean of Student Services will not appoint a member of the appeal panel, and the President will instead ask the appropriate instructional dean to make said appointment.

14. The hearing by the appeal panel is an administrative hearing and the proceedings will be informal rather than those used in courts of law. The panel may hear such evidence and witnesses as it deems appropriate. The rights of the student before the appeal panel are the same as those in the conference with the dean, including the right to be advised by whomever the student wishes.

15. The findings of the appeal panel will be reviewed by the President of the College. The purpose of the review by the President is to ensure that proper policy and procedure has been followed. The President may order further proceedings in the case. The decision of the President in the matter is final and will conclude the process insofar as the College is concerned.

16. The President will give written notice of the final decision in the case to the student and to the appropriate members of the staff of the College.

 Earning Grades


Grading System

Letter grades are assigned according to the following system for all courses for which students have registered.

A Excellent (90 - 100)
B Good (80 - 89)
C Average (70 - 79)
D Poor (60 - 69)
F Failure (below 60)
W Withdrawal
I Incomplete
AU Audit

 Grade requirements and withdrawal policies may vary in specific courses or programs.  For specific information consult the course syllabus, the department page on the College Web site, or contact the Office of the Dean of Academic Services, 205.391.3902.

A grade of IP is available only in those sections of developmental education courses that utilize Computer Based Instruction (CBI). These CBI sections are identified each semester in the official Schedule of Classes on the College Web site, www.sheltonstate.edu. For additional information, refer to the Language and Mathematics Department pages on the College Web site.

A grade of W is assigned to a student who officially withdraws from the College or from a course.  Refer to the Withdrawal Process for additional information.

A grade of I is assigned only if the final exam (or some work or equivalent significance) is missed.  The student must provide the instructor with documentation to support that the absence was due to extenuating circumstances.  In the event that an I is given, the instructor must submit to the division chair (or other designees) a written plan for the student to complete the work to establish the course grade.  Unless extenuating circumstances exist, the grade must be established within one semester after the I was initially assigned.  Once the grade is determined, the instructor will follow the official change of grade procedure.  If no grade has been established prior to the end of the semester, the I will automatically be changed to F.

Non-credit College activities such as START-UP and COMPASS may appear on the student’s schedule and/or unofficial transcript.

Audit

A student may audit a course rather than enroll in it for credit. Standards of performance for each class will be defined by the individual instructor. A mark of AU is given to denote an audit. A student auditing classes must fulfill admission requirements as stated in the Admissions/Records Information section of this catalog and meet all required course prerequisites. A student may change a course from CREDIT to AUDIT or from AUDIT to CREDIT only during the Drop/Add and Late Registration Period of each semester within the Office of Admissions and Records.

Grade Points

To obtain a numerical measure of the quality of a student’s work, grade points are assigned to grades as indicated below:

A — 4 grade points per hour
B — 3 grade points per hour
C — 2 grade points per hour
D — 1 grade point per hour
F — 0 grade points per hour

The grade point average (GPA) of a student is determined by multiplying the number of grade points for each grade received by the number of semester hours for that course; then the total number of grade points is divided by the total number of semester hours attempted, excluding courses with W, S, U, and AU designations.

Required GPA

The student must earn a 2.0 cumulative GPA in all courses attempted at the College.  (The calculation of the grade point average for graduation will not include grades earned in institutional credit courses.  All grades in repeated courses will be averaged into the GPA; however, a course may be counted only once for purposes of meeting graduation requirements unless specifically noted in the College catalog that the course may be repeated for credit.)

Change of Grade Policy

With the permission of the Dean of Academic or Technical Services, an instructor may change a grade.  Unless extenuating circumstances exist, the change of grade must be made within one semester after the grade was initially assigned. The instructor is responsible for submitting the completed grade change form to the Division Chair.

Grade Appeal Process

General Policies Regarding Grade Appeals:

  1. Appeals are accepted only when a student believes the instructor did not assign the grade correctly based on the syllabus guidelines.
  2. The student may appeal only the final grade in a class.
  3. Grades received during the term can be discussed with the instructor during scheduled student hours or at another appointment with the instructor but cannot be formally appealed during the term.
  4. Questions about grades should be handled informally if possible.  If informal conversations between the instructor and student do not resolve an issue, a formal grade appeal can be filed.
  5. The burden of proof is on the student in a grade appeal.
  6. A student who receives a failing grade because he/she was unaware of the procedure for withdrawing from a course does not have the right to appeal the grade.

Grade Appeal Steps:

  1. Initiation:
  •  To initiate a grade appeal, the student must prepare a written statement describing why he/she believes that the grading procedures outlined in the class syllabus were not appropriately followed, attaching all relevant evidence to the letter.
  • That letter must be submitted to the secretary to the Dean of Academic or Technical Services, as appropriate, within 14 calendar days of the beginning of the following term.
  • The secretary will log the appeal into the database and give a copy of the student’s letter to the instructor.

     2.  Instructor Response:

  • The instructor will prepare a written response within 7 calendar days of the receipt of the grade appeal, submitting the response to the secretary.
  • The secretary will notify the student that the response from the instructor has been received via the college email system and/or the phone number supplied by the student at the time the appeal was filed.
  • The student may pick up a copy of the instructor’s response from the secretary.
  • The division chair will be notified that an appeal has been filed.

    3.  Chair Response:

  • If the student does not think the issue has been resolved, he/she must submit a written request for division chair review to the secretary within 7 calendar days of notification by the secretary of the instructor’s response.
  • The secretary will deliver copies of all documents to the division chair who will analyze the appeal and provide a written response to the secretary within 7 calendar days.
  • The secretary will again deliver that response to the student in the same manner indicated above.

    4.  Dean’s Decision:

  • If the student still believes there is a problem, he/she has 7 more calendar days from notification of the chair’s response to request in writing a review by the dean is desired.
  • The student has the choice for appeal to be considered either by the dean or by a dean-appointed committee of three faculty members from outside the division of the course in question.  The preference of the student should be included in the letter of appeal to the dean.  If it is not included, the decision of whether to use a committee will be made by the dean.
  • The secretary will give a copy of all materials that had been submitted by the student, instructor, or chair by the appropriate deadline to either the dean or to the appointed committee.
  • If chosen, the committee will review documents and make a recommendation to the dean.
  • The dean’s written decision is final and cannot be appealed.

 Grade Appeal Decision:  Subsequent Terms

  • If the grade being appealed was earned in a full term class during the fall, spring, or summer, the succeeding semester will be considered to be the spring, summer, or fall, respectively.  If the grade being appealed is for a first split-term course, the succeeding semester will be considered to be the second split-term of that semester.  If the grade being appealed is for a second split-term course, the succeeding semester will be considered to be the same as if it were a full-term course.
  • If the grade appeal is in a course which is a prerequisite to a follow-up course for which the student is enrolled in the succeeding semester, the student will be allowed to enroll in the follow-up course if the student signs a statement that says:

I acknowledge that I am being allowed to enroll in <name of follow-up course(s)> pending the outcome of my grade appeal for <appealed course>.  I understand that if my grade appeal for<appealed course> does not result in a change of grade that would qualify me to take <name of follow-up course(s)> I will be administratively withdrawn from the follow-up course(s) with full refund of tuition and fees.  I acknowledge that the return of any books and supplies associated with the follow-up course(s) is entirely my responsibility, and that if those books were paid through financial aid, I must return that aid money.  I also acknowledge that I am fully responsible for returning any financial aid refunds if withdrawal from courses results in a reduction in my aid amount.

  • If an unsuccessful grade appeal would result in the student being placed on academic suspension, the student will be allowed to enroll in the succeeding semester if the student signs a statement saying:

I acknowledge that I am being allowed to enroll in <term> pending the outcome of my grade appeal for <name of course>.  If the grade appeal does not result in a change of grade that would preclude suspension, I will be administratively withdrawn from the college with full refund of tuition and fees.  I acknowledge that the return of any books and supplies associated with the courses I was enrolled in for <term> is entirely my responsibility, and that if those books were paid through financial aid, I must return that aid money.  I also acknowledge that I am fully responsible for returning any financial aid refund associated with <term>. 

Dean’s List

A Dean’s List will be compiled at the end of each semester and published on the College’s Web site and local print media. Requirements for the Dean’s List include the following:

  1. a semester grade point average of 3.5 or above, and
  2. completion of a minimum semester course load of 12 semester credit hours of college-level work. Developmental courses will not count toward the minimum course load requirement. 

President’s List

A President’s List will be compiled at the end of each semester and published on the College’s Web site and local print media. Requirements for the President’s List are as follows:

  1. a semester grade point average of 4.0; and
  2. completion of a minimum semester course load of 12 semester credit hours of college-level work. Developmental courses will not count toward the minimum course load requirement.

Progress Towards the Academic Credential


Standards of Academic Progress

These standards of progress will apply to all students unless otherwise noted. Required Grade Point Average (GPA) levels for students according to number of hours attempted at the institution are as follows:

  1. Students who have attempted 12-21 semester credit hours at the institution must maintain a 1.5 cumulative GPA.
  2. Students who have attempted 22-32 semester credit hours at the institution must maintain a 1.75 cumulative GPA.
  3. Students who have attempted 33 or more semester credit hours at the institution must maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA.

When a student is placed on Academic Probation, One Term Academic Suspension, or One Calendar Year Academic Suspension, College officials may provide intervention for the student by taking steps including, but not limited to, imposing maximum course loads, requiring a study skills course, and/or prescribing other specific courses.

The standards of progress relative to the cumulative GPA are applied as follows:

  1. When the cumulative GPA is at or above the GPA required for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution, the student’s status is CLEAR.
  2. When the cumulative GPA is below the GPA required for the number of credit hours attempted at the institution, the student’s status is ACADEMIC PROBATION. When the cumulative GPA of a student who is on Academic Probation remains below the GPA required for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution, but the semester GPA is 2.0 or above, the student remains on Academic Probation. 
  3. When the cumulative GPA of a student who is on Academic Probation remains below the GPA required for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution and the semester GPA is below 2.0, the student is suspended for one semester. The transcript will read SUSPENDED — ONE SEMESTER. When the cumulative GPA is at or above the GPA required for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution, the student’s status is CLEAR. 
  4. The student who is suspended for one semester may appeal. If, after appeal, the student is readmitted without serving the one semester suspension, the transcript will read SUSPENDED ONE SEMESTER/READMITTED UPON APPEAL.  
  5. The student who is readmitted upon appeal reenters the institution on ACADEMIC PROBATION. 
  6. A student who is on Academic Probation after being suspended for one semester (whether the student has served the suspension or has been readmitted upon appeal) without having since achieved CLEAR academic status and whose cumulative GPA falls below the level required for the total number of hours attempted at the institution, but whose semester GPA is 2.0 or above, will remain on Academic Probation until the student achieves the required GPA for the total number of hours attempted. 
  7. A student returning from a one term or one year suspension and, while on Academic Probation, fails to obtain the required GPA for the number of hours attempted and fails to maintain a term GPA of 2.0, will be placed on a ONE YEAR SUSPENSION. 
  8. The student may appeal a one term or one year suspension.

 Transfer Students

  1. A transfer student who is admitted on CLEAR academic status is subject to the same standards of academic progress as a “native” student. Grades accrued at other regionally accredited post-secondary institutions are not included in GPA calculation.
  2. A transfer student who is admitted on Academic Probation retains that status until the student has attempted at least 12 semester credit hours at the institution. If, at the conclusion of the semester in which the student has attempted a total of 12 or more semester credit hours at the institution, the cumulative GPA at the institution is below 1.5, the student is suspended for one semester. The transcript will read SUSPENDED ONE SEMESTER.
  3. If, at the conclusion of the semester in which the transfer student admitted on Academic Probation has attempted a total of 12 semester credit hours at the institution, the cumulative GPA at the institution is 1.5 or above, the student’s status is CLEAR. If a student declares no contest of the facts leading to the suspension but simply wishes to request consideration for readmission, the student may submit a request in writing for an “appeal for readmission” to the Academic Affairs Action Team within a designated, published number of days of receipt of the notice of suspension. During the meeting of the Academic Affairs Action Team, which will not be considered a “due process” hearing, but rather a petition for readmission, the student will be given an opportunity to present a rationale and/or statement of mitigating circumstances in support of immediate readmission. The decision of the Academic Affairs Action Team, together with the materials presented by the student, will be placed in the College’s official records. Additionally, a copy of the written decision will be provided to the student. Equity, reasonableness, and consistency should be the standards by which such decisions are measured. NOTE: Students readmitted on suspension are not eligible for financial aid.

Exceptions to the above standards are as follows:

  1. Programs within the institution which are subject to external licensure, certification, and/or accreditation or which are  fewer than four semesters in length may have higher standards of progress than the institutional standards of progress.
  2. Special standards of academic progress have been established for students enrolled in institutional credit courses carrying optional grades and for students who wish to remain eligible to receive Title IV financial aid.

Definitions of terms used above are as follows:

  1. Semester GPA - the grade point average based on all hours attempted during any one term at the institution based on a 4 point scale
  2. Cumulative GPA - the grade point average based on all hours attempted at the institution based on a 4 point grade scale
  3. Clear Academic Status - the status of a student whose cumulative GPA is at or above the level required by this policy for the number of credit hours attempted at the institution
  4. Academic Probation - the status of a student whose cumulative GPA falls below the level required by this policy for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution; or the status of a student who was on Academic Probation the previous term and whose cumulative GPA for that semester remained below the level required by this policy for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution, but whose semester GPA for that term was 2.0 or above
  5. One Semester Academic Suspension - the status of a student who was on Academic Probation the previous term, but who has never been suspended or who, since suspension, had achieved Clear Academic Status and whose cumulative GPA that term was below the level required by this policy for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution and whose semester GPA for that term was below 2.0
  6. One Year Academic Suspension - the status of a student who was on Academic Probation the previous term and who has previously been suspended without since having achieved Clear Academic Status and whose cumulative GPA that term remained below the level required by this policy for the total number of credit hours attempted at the institution and whose semester GPA for that term was below 2.0
  7. Appeal of Suspension - the process by which Shelton State Community College will allow a student suspended for one term or one year (whether a native student or a transfer student) to request readmission without having to serve the suspension

Academic Bankruptcy

Students who meet the following conditions may submit an academic bankruptcy form to the Registrar:

  1. If fewer than three calendar years have elapsed since the semester for which the student wishes to declare bankruptcy, the student may declare academic bankruptcy on all course work taken during that one semester provided the student has completed a minimum of 18 semester credit hours of course work at the institution since the bankruptcy semester occurred. All course work taken, even hours completed satisfactorily during the semester for which academic bankruptcy is declared, will be disregarded in the cumulative grade point average.
  2. If three or more calendar years have elapsed since the semester for which the student wishes to declare bankruptcy, the student may declare academic bankruptcy on all course work taken during one to three semesters provided the student has completed a minimum of 18 semester credit hours of course work at the institution since the bankruptcy semester(s) occurred. All course work taken, even hours satisfactorily completed during the semester(s) for which academic bankruptcy is declared, will be disregarded in the cumulative grade point average.

When academic bankruptcy is declared, the transcript will reflect the semester(s) of implementation and the transcript will read “ACADEMIC BANKRUPTCY IMPLEMENTED.” The courses and the grades from the bankrupted semester(s) will remain on the transcript, but grades will not be counted in the overall Grade Point Average (GPA).

A student may declare academic bankruptcy only once. Hours forgiven when a student declares academic bankruptcy will still be included for determining financial aid eligibility.

Implementation of academic bankruptcy at an institution does not guarantee that other institutions will approve such action. This determination will be made by the respective transfer institutions.

NOTE: Courses in which a student earns a grade of U (Unsatisfactory), F (Failure), or W (Withdrawal) will not be counted as courses taken to achieve the required minimum of 18 semester credit hours of course work at the institution.

Academic Bankruptcy hours will be counted in the attempted hours for financial aid in determining a student’s quantitative standards of progress.

Course Forgiveness Policy

Students may submit a Course Forgiveness Form to the Registrar to request Course Forgiveness.

  1. When a student repeats a course once, the second grade awarded (excluding grades of WP or W) replaces the original grade in the computation of the cumulative grade point average. The grade point average during the term in which the course was first attempted will not be affected.
  2. When a student repeats a course more than once, all grades for the course, excluding the first grade, will be used to compute the cumulative grade point average. Official records at the College will list each course with the grade earned.
  3. A course may be counted only once toward fulfillment of credit hours for graduation.

This Course Forgiveness Policy applies at Shelton State Community College only; respective transfer institutions may or may not accept the adjusted cumulative grade point average. That determination will be made by the respective transfer institution.

It is the student’s responsibility to complete the form to request course forgiveness. This form is available in the Office of Admissions and Records. Hours forgiven when a student declares academic course forgiveness will still be included for determining financial aid eligibility.

Scholastic Amnesty 

The College has a Scholastic Amnesty policy by which a student who has not attended any college for a five-year period may request that all college work prior to this five-year period not be considered in computing the student’s grade point average. Implementation of scholastic amnesty at an institution does not guarantee that other institutions will approve such action. This determination will be made by the respective transfer institutions.

All attempted hours including hours forgiven when a student declares scholastic amnesty will be counted for determining the quantitative standards of progress for financial aid eligibility.

It is the student’s responsibility to complete the form to request scholastic amnesty. This form is available in the Office of Admissions and Records.  A student may only declare scholastic amnesty once.

Classification of Students

Students who have earned 31 semester hours or less are classified as freshmen. Those who have earned 32 hours or more are classified as sophomores.

Students who enroll for less than 12 hours are classified as part-time students. Part-time students’ programs of study should conform to the general curriculum requirements for all students.

Students who are registered for 12 hours or more are classified as full-time students by the College.

Completion of the Academic Credential


Graduating

Upon satisfactory completion of the requirements described in the section entitled Requirements for Academic Credentials, the student is considered to have earned a certificate or degree.  To receive a diploma and/or participate in the commencement exercises of the institution, a student who has successfully completed the requirements for a degree must complete the following:

  1. submit a formal application for graduation in accordance with institutional policy.  Applications may be obtained in the Office of Admission and Records. 
  2. fulfill financial obligations to the College;
  3. satisfy those requirements either as stated in the College catalog current at the time of graduation or as stated in any of the catalogs for the four (4) previous academic years.

Earning Multiple Degrees  

To qualify for a second Associate Degree from Shelton State Community College, a student must complete, with an average of C or better, 16 semester hours or more above the degree requirements for the first Associate Degree. The student must follow the same graduation requirements for each degree sought.

Graduation Honors

Superior academic achievement by graduating students receiving degrees will be recognized by the following designations on transcripts: 

  Graduation with Honors (Cum Laude) 3.50 to 3.69 GPA
  Graduation with High Honors (Magna Cum Laude) 3.70 to 3.89 GPA
  Graduation with Highest Honors (Summa Cum Laude) 3.90 to 4.00 GPA
  Graduation with Distinction 3.50 to 4.00 GPA

 Student participation in Phi Theta Kappa, the national post-secondary academic honorary society, will also be noted on the transcript.

NOTE: Calculation of the GPA for graduation honors will be identical to that method used to calculate the GPA to fulfill graduation requirements for the degree, diploma, or certificate being earned. In addition, in order to be eligible for a graduation honor, the student must have completed a minimum of 32 semester credit hours at Shelton State Community College.

 Request for Transcripts

The transcript policy of Shelton State Community College includes the following:

  1. Compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. The College does not release transcripts of a student’s work except upon the student’s written request.
  2. Official transcripts are sent to institutions, companies, and agencies, upon the student’s written request. Official transcripts in a sealed envelope may be picked up by the student in The Office of Admissions and Records. The student must produce a picture ID in order to obtain the transcript. The transcripts will be stamped “Issued to Student.” It is the decision of the receiving party to accept or reject the transcript as official.
  3. A request for a transcript may be mailed to The Office of Admissions and Records, 9500 Old Greensboro Road, Box 190, Shelton State Community College, Tuscaloosa, AL 35405; faxed to 205.391.3910; or may be taken to the Office of Admissions and Records, Martin Campus; or requested electronically through the student’s MyShelton account..
  4. Transcript requests are processed as they are received. Requests should be made at least two weeks prior to need. There is no fee for transcripts.
  5. The Office of Admissions and Records does not issue official transcripts from other institutions. Requests for transcripts from other institutions must be directed to the institution concerned.
  6. Official transcripts will not be issued if the student has an incomplete admission’s file, an outstanding debt to the College, or an academic hold on their account.

 Student Records Policy

For Shelton State Community College to comply with requirements of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), the following policies and procedures have been established.  Shelton State Community College accords all rights under the law to students who are declared independent.  For the purpose of this policy, whenever a student has attained eighteen years of age, or is attending an institution of postsecondary education, the permission or consent required of and the rights accorded to the parents of the student will thereafter only be required of and accorded to the student.  Responsibility for protection of the privacy of the student educational records rests primarily with the Registrar of the College.  FERPA defines educational records to include records, files, documents, and other materials that contain information directly related to students and are maintained by an educational agency or institution.  There are six exceptions to this definition of educational records as published in the GUILDELINES FOR POSTSECONDARY INSTITUTIONS FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE FAMILY EDUCATIONAL RIGHTS AND PRIVACY ACT OF 1974 AS AMENDED, Revised Edition 2001, a publication of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.

Students’ Access to Their Educational Records

All students have the right to review their educational records with the following exceptions as outlined by FERPA.

  1. Financial aid information.
  2. Confidential letters and recommendations placed in their files prior to January 1, 1975, provided these letters were collected under established policies of confidentiality and were used only for the purposes for which specifically collected.
  3. Confidential letters and statements of recommendation, placed in the records after January 1, 1975, to which the students have waived their right to inspect and review and to which they relate that to the students’ admission application for employment or job placement, or receipt of honors.
  4. Education records containing information about more than one student; however, in such cases the institution must permit access to that part of the record that pertains only to the inquiring student.  To review records, students and former students may go to the Office of Admissions and Records, present a valid photo identification card, and ask to review the record.  If it is an inappropriate time to retrieve the record on short notice, students may be requested to complete a “Request to Review Education Records” form in the Office of Admissions and Records.  Because of various circumstances, the College may delay to a maximum of 45 days release of the records for review.  The college is not required to provide access to records of applicants for admission who are denied acceptance or, if accepted, do not attend.

Challenge of the Contents of Education Records

Students may challenge information in their educational records that they believe to be incorrect, inaccurate, or inappropriate.  This challenge must be in writing and must be submitted to the appropriate instructional officer who is responsible for the division in which the student is enrolled.  The officer must decide within a reasonable period whether corrective action will be taken, and the officer must provide written notification to the student and the Registrar of the corrective action that has been approved.  Students who are not provided full relief sought by their challenge must be referred to the Dean of Student Services who will inform them of their right to a formal hearing.  Students must make their request for a formal hearing in writing to the Office of the Dean of Student Services.  The following procedures will apply.

  1. The Office of the Dean of Student Services will appoint the hearing panel that will adjudicate such challenges.
  2. Within a reasonable period of time after receiving the written request for a hearing, the chairperson of the Committee must inform students of the date, place, and time of the hearing reasonable in advance of the hearing.
  3. Students will be afforded a full and fair opportunity to present evidence relevant to the issue raised.  They may be assisted or represented at the hearing by one or more persons of their choice, including an attorney, at their expense.
  4. Decisions made by the Committee must be in writing, must be based solely on the evidence presented at the hearing, and must include a summary of the evidence and the reasons for the decision.  The decisions should be delivered in writing to the student, the Office of the Dean of Student Services, and the Registrar.
    1. The Records Office will correct or amend the education record in accordance with the decision of the hearing if the decision is in favor of the student and inform the student in writing of the amendment.
    2. Should Shelton State Community College decide not to amend the record in accordance with the student’s request, the Registrar must inform the student that
      1. the student has the opportunity to place with the education record a statement commenting on the information in the record or a statement setting forth any reason for disagreeing with the decision of the hearing.
      2. the statement placed in the education record by the student will be maintained as part of the record for as long as the record is held by the College.
      3. this record, when disclosed to an authorized party, must include the statement held by the student.

Disclosure of Education Record Information

Shelton State Community College will obtain written consent from students before disclosing any personally identifiable information from their education records.  Such written consent must 

  1. specify the records to be released.
  2. state the purpose of the disclosure.
  3. identify the party or class to whom disclosure may be made.
  4. be signed and dated by the student.

FERPA states that certain information from student records may be classified as directory information.

  1. Name
  2. Address
  3. Telephone listing
  4. E-mail address
  5. Participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  6. Major field of study
  7. Weight and height if a member of an athletic team
  8. Dates of attendance and current status (full or part-time)
  9. Degrees and awards received

The information will be released to inquiring individuals or agencies unless the student signs a “Do Not Release Directory Information” form in the Office of Admissions and Records during the first two weeks of the semester.  THIS FORM MUST BE RESUBMITTED ANNUALLY.  FERPA established rules stating that some personnel and agencies may have access to students’ “educational records” without written consent of the student.  Shelton State Community College will disclose information from a student’s education record only with the written consent of the student except

  1. To school officials within the institution who have been determined by the College to have a legitimate educational interest in the records.  A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is performing a task that is specified in his or her position description or by a contract agreement, performing a task related to a student’s education, or performing a task related t the discipline of the student.  When doubt is raised by the Registrar about an individual’s “need to know” or legitimate educational interest in having access to specific information, the issue will be decided by the President of Shelton State Community College.
  2. To certain officials of the U.S. Department of Education, the Comptroller General, and state and local educational authorities in connection with certain state or federally supported education programs.
  3. In connection with a student’s request for or receipt of financial aid, as necessary to determine the eligibility, amount, or conditions of the financial aid, or to enforce the terms and conditions of that aid.
  4. To state and local officials to whom information is specifically required to be reported or disclosed pursuant to state statute adopted prior to November 19, 1974.
  5. To organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of Shelton State Community College.
  6. To accrediting organizations to carry out their accrediting functions.
  7. To appropriate parties in a health or safety emergency subject to a determination by the President or Dean.
  8. To personnel complying with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena, provided that the Office of Admissions and Records makes a reasonable attempt to notify the student in advance of compliance.  NOTE:  Shelton State Community College is not required to notify a student if a federal grand jury subpoena or any other subpoena issued for some law enforcement purpose orders the College not to disclose the existence or contents of the subpoena.
  9. To an alleged victim of any crime or violence (as that term is defined in 18 U.S.C. 16) of the results of any institutional disciplinary proceeding against the alleged perpetrator of that crime with respect to that crime.

Shelton State Community College will inform parties to whom personally identifiable information is released that they are not permitted to disclose the information to others without the written consent of the student.  Shelton State Community College will maintain a record of all requests for and/or disclosure of information from a student’s educational records.  The record will indicate the name of the party making the request, any additional party to whom it may be re-disclosed, and the legitimate interest the party had in requesting or obtaining the information.  The eligible student may review the record.

Annual Notification of FERPA Rights

 Shelton State Community College will give annual notice to current students of their rights under the Act by publishing information in the College catalog.

Facsimile Records (FAX)

Shelton State Community College honors FAX requests to send official transcripts to third parties, and Shelton State will accept FAX transcripts for advising purposes only.  An official transcript is required for admission purposes.

Computer Access to Records

Shelton State Community College has established policies for initially instructing and periodically reminding school officials of FERPA’s confidentiality requirement before it gives them access to the computer system.  The school officials are informed of the criteria Shelton State Community College uses to determine legitimate educational interest and of their responsibility for assuring that access is not abused.

Students’ Rights after Ceasing Attendance or Graduation

Students who have ceased attendance or have graduated from Shelton State Community College have basically the same FERPA rights as students currently attending, including the right to:

  1. inspect their education records.
  2. have a hearing to amend an education record.
  3. have their education record privacy protected by Shelton State Community College.

Former students do not have the right to request of Shelton State nondisclosure unless they asked, at their last opportunity as students, that no directory information be disclosed.

Privacy Rights of Deceased Students

For 25 years following the death of a student, the release of education record information will not be made unless authorized by the student’s parents or the executor/executrix of the deceased student’s estate.

Student Mailing Lists/Solomon Amendment

Shelton State Community College, as required by Federal law (Solomon Amendment), releases the name, address, major, and telephone number of all currently enrolled students to each branch of the military upon request.  Otherwise, the College does not release mailing lists of students to outside agencies.