SMMU CODE OF CONDUCT
SMMU has established standards of conduct which are compatible with the academic mission of the institution. An educational approach to discipline is employed whenever possible.
Law, statutes and regulations at the national, state and local levels grant public institutions the authority to establish standards reasonably relevant to the lawful missions, processes, and functions of the institution. Such standards are not intended to prohibit the exercise of a right guaranteed by the Constitution or a law of the United States to a member of the university community.
Standards may apply to student behavior when relevant to any lawful mission, process, or function of the institution. The institution may prohibit any action or omission, which impairs, interferes with, or obstructs the missions, processes and functions of the institution.
Institutional standards may require scholastic attainments higher than the average of the population and may require superior ethical and moral behavior. In establishing standards of behavior, institutions are not limited to the standards or the forms of criminal laws [“General Order on Judicial Standards of Procedure and Substance in Review of Student Discipline in Tax-Supported Institutions of Higher Education,” 45 F.R.D. 133/145 (W.D. Mo. 1968)].
The acceptance of these rights and responsibilities is a prerequisite for enrollment at SMMU. It is the responsibility of each student to know and understand established rules of conduct. Lack of awareness is not recognized as a legitimate reason for failure to comply.
Violators may be accountable to both civil and criminal authorities and to the University for acts of misconduct, which constitute violations of this Code. Disciplinary action at the University may proceed during the pendency of other proceedings at the discretion of University officials. Sanctions may be imposed for acts of misconduct, which occur on University property or at any University sponsored activity. As further prescribed in these rules, off-campus conduct may also be subject to discipline.
Each student registers and enrolls using their primary email address. The student will be responsible for monitoring this address on a regular basis for official communications from SMMU faculty and administrators.
The University maintains the right to amend its rules and to make such amendments effective immediately upon appropriate public notification of students. The most current version of the Student Code of Conduct may be found on-line at www.smmu.com/student-conduct
Disciplinary action may be initiated by the University and sanctions imposed against any student or student organization found responsible for committing, attempting to commit, or intentionally assisting in the commission of any of the following prohibited forms of conduct:
I. Academic Conduct Regulations
Academic integrity is of paramount importance at SMMU. An act of academic misconduct may seriously compromise the learning process for the violator and for other students if it occurs without appropriate disciplinary consequences. Academic misconduct is defined by the following regulations.
A. Disruption of the Learning Environment
Behavior which disrupts the teaching–learning process will not be tolerated. This includes but is not limited to belligerent, abusive, profane, distracting and/or threatening behavior. More subtle forms of behavior may also negatively impact the teaching-learning process. Possible examples (as deemed appropriate by each individual instructor as they establish their own unique learning environments) include but are not limited to: harrassment of students or instructors, inappropriate language use, unwillingness to participate in educational activities, which may in some cases, may significantly impact the instructor’s ability to conduct the class. A student who fails to respond to reasonable faculty direction regarding classroom behavior and/or behavior while participating in classroom activities may be dismissed from a course or deemed ineligible for certification.
A student who is dismissed is entitled to due process and will be afforded such rights as soon as possible following dismissal. If found in violation, a student may be administratively withdrawn and will not be eligible to complete the certification program.
B. Giving or Receiving Unauthorized Assistance
No student will give or receive assistance when not authorized by the instructor in the preparation or completion of any assignmentor examination to be submitted as a requirement for a course of the overall certification program.
C. Unauthorized Materials or Equipment
1. No student will take or attempt to take, steal or otherwise procure in an unauthorized manner any material pertaining to the conduct of a class, including but not limited to tests, examinations, etc.
2. No student will make use of any materials, aids, tools, or electronic devices not specifically condoned by the instructor in preparing academic assignments or while taking an examination.
D. Furnishing Unauthorized Exam Information or Materials
No student will sell, give, lend or otherwise furnish to anyone material which can be shown to contain the questions or answers to any examinations scheduled to be given at any subsequent date in any course of study offered by the University, without authorization from the instructor.
E. Plagiarism and Misrepresentation of Work
No student will represent the work of others as his or her own. All assignments must be the work of the student submitting them. When direct quotations are used, they must be indicated with quotation marks and when the ideas of another are incorporated, they must be appropriately cited.
1. No student will submit the same assignment for two courses without the prior consent of the instructor.
F. Violating Testing Rules and Procedures
No student will give or receive assistance; take, steal or otherwise procure any unauthorized materials; or otherwise commit an infraction of the established rules and procedures governing the administration of tests or exams.
G. Falsification & Fabrication
No student will provide unauthorized or false information, citation, or documentation in any academic exercise.
II. General Conduct Regulations
A. Damage to Property/Vandalism
Damage to Property
1. Damage or destruction of property belonging to the University or to a member of, or visitors to, the University community is prohibited.
2. Intentional damage or destruction of property belonging to the University or to a member of, or visitors to, the University community is prohibited.
1. Misuse of any University records, identification cards, forms, or other documents through forgery, misrepresentation, unauthorized alteration, unauthorized reproduction, or other unauthorized means is prohibited.
2. Intentionally providing false information, either written or oral, to the University or to any administrative unit of the University, is prohibited.
3. Attempted or perpetrated fraud against the University or members of the University community is prohibited.
4. Withholding or omitting requested or required information from the University
C. Disorderly Assembly
1. Students will not assemble at SMMU offices or event sites for the purpose of creating a riot or destruction, or disorderly diversion which interferes with the normal operation of the University. This should not be construed as denial of the right to peaceful, non-disruptive assembly.
2. Students will not obstruct the free movement of other persons about SMMU offices, interfere with the use of facilities, or physically interfere with the normal operation of the University.
D. Disorderly Conduct
1. All lewd, obscene, indecent behavior, or other forms of disorderly conduct on University property or at any function sponsored or supervised by the University is prohibited. This includes belligerent, abusive, profane, and/or threatening behavior and conduct patently offensive to the prevailing standards of a college community, but should not be interpreted as an infringement on the First Amendment rights of individuals.
2.. No student will threaten to, or purposefully, push, strike, or physically assault any member of the faculty, administration, staff, or student body, or any visitor to the offices.
4. Conduct at SMMU offices or at functions sponsored or supervised by SMMU which interferes with the normal operation of the University or the requirements of appropriate discipline, is prohibited.
5. No student will enter or attempt to enter any University-sponsored event without credentials for admission as established by the sponsors. At such University functions, students must present proper credentials to properly identified University officials upon request.
No student will take, attempt to take, or keep in his or her possession items not legally possessed by him or her including but not exclusively, items of University property, or items belonging to students, faculty, staff, student groups or visitors to the campus, without proper authorization.
F. Unauthorized Entry or Use of University Facilities/Equipment
1. No student will make unauthorized entry into SMMU offices nor will any person remain without authorization in offices after normal closing hours.
2. No student will make unauthorized use of any University facility or equipment. Authorization of the use of University facilities/equipment may be withdrawn or otherwise restricted at any time.
G. Misuse of Computer Equipment
1. No student may use SMMU-owned computer equipment unless authorized to do so. All users must abide by the regulations regarding authorization, priority of use, computer access and the basic rules of courtesy. Users agree to not take any action considered inappropriate behavior including, but not limited to the following: a. Intentionally infecting network servers or other computers with a virus b. Connecting networking equipment including, but not limited to servers, routers, hubs and switches, and wireless access points to the campus network without written authorization from SMMU c. Sending harassing messages to other computer users either at SMMU or through external networks d. Using inappropriate, offensive, or abusive language to other users within the SMMU network, or through external networks e. Tampering with or modifying accessed equipment f. Causing intentional damage to computer systems g. Obtaining additional resources not authorized to the individual user h. Depriving other users of authorized resources i. Acquiring access to unauthorized systems j. Utilizing another user’s account and password k. Broadcasting unauthorized email to SMMU faculty, staff and students (including but not limited to “For Rent/Sale” and personal notes) l. Broadcasting unsolicited email and e-mail that is in violation of the CAN-SPAM act of 2003
2. No student may in any way abuse or misuse computer files or gain access to unauthorized computer files. Georgia Code 89-9903 on “Stealing, altering, etc. of public documents,” states that “No person shall steal…alter…or void any record.” The Code defines record to include “audiovisual material in any format, magnetic or other tapes, electronic data processing records.” Violation of this law is considered a felony and punishable by incarceration of two to ten years.
H. Harassment, stalking & Sexual Misconduct
Sexual Misconduct is a violation of SMMU policy and Federal law and may also result in
criminal prosecution. Sexual Misconduct can occur between strangers or acquaintances, and
even people involved in intimate or sexual relationships. Sexual Misconduct can be committed
by men or women, and it can occur between people of the same or different gender.
Additionally, examples of actions and situations that constitute Sexual Misconduct may include, but are not limited to, the following defined below and definitions remain the same regardless of who engages in the behavior-university employees, students, or non-students.
1. Harassment is prohibited and includes, but is not limited to, the following:
a. any act of intimidation, physical violence, or threat of physical violence directed to
another person in any manner, including any terroristic threats;
b. intentionally and/or repeatedly following or contacting another person in a manner that intimidates, harasses, or places another in fear of their personal safety or that of their property;
c. any behavior that is threatening or intimidating on the basis of age, ethnicity, gender, disability, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status
2. Stalking is prohibited and is defined as repeatedly contacting another person when:
a. The contacting person knows or should know that the contact is unwanted by the other person; and
b. The contact causes the other person reasonable apprehension of imminent physical harm or the contacting person knows or should know that the contact causes substantial
impairment of the other person’s ability to perform the activities of daily life. As used in
this subsection, “contacting” includes but is not limited to communicating with or
remaining in the physical presence of the other person.
3. Sexual Misconduct is prohibited. This is defined as behavior directed toward an individual
a. Constitutes conduct of a sexual nature that threatens physical harm, endangers the health and safety of any person, or that which a reasonable person would know was unwanted and would cause emotional distress, and/or,
b. Interferes with an individual’s ability to perform at the University academically or socially.
The following guidelines were developed to help SMMU students for the Responsible Use of technology
Do not send messages that are threatening, harassing, or offensive in any way.
Be sure all quotes and sources are properly credited to avoid plagiarism.
Do not pretend that you are someone else.
Do not publicize personal matters through the online course site where your class resides.
Always respect the confidentiality of information disclosed
Please remember that any of your comments may be misinterpreted.
Do not forward private email sent to you without first asking the originator’s permission.
Email can be forwarded to other people without your permission.
Be sure to sign out of any password protected system to ensure the privacy of your personal academic information.
Be careful when providing your personal information online to avoid identity theft.
Be cautious about publishing personal information on public web spaces as this information may be available to unintended viewers.
Be courteous and professional with your communications.
Do not convey a hostile or confrontational tone when communicating or working collaboratively with other students.
Do not be confrontational for the sake of it.
Express differences of opinion in a polite and rational way.
Maintain an environment of constructive criticism when commenting on the work of other students.
Be tolerant and patient with all users.
18. “Sign” your emails and discussion postings. Email addresses do not always indicate the name or email address of the sender.
19. Keep your emails and discussion postings short and to the point.
20. If you think you are too emotional, don’t send the message; save it, and review it later.
21. Use sarcasm and humor with care, you can use this sideways happy face.
22. Do not use all capital letters
23. Review and edit your words and images before sending.
24. Make an effort to spell words correctly and use correct grammar
25. Shortened phrases or acronyms may not be appropriate in an educational environment.
If you have any questions or concerns about Netiquette:
Mon-Fri, 9:30am – 4:30pm Eastern Phone Toll Free: 1-888-500-2380 or open a ticket using smmu.com/support.
J. Anti-Cyberbullying Policy
Cyber-bullying is an aggressive, intentional act carried out by a group or individual using electronic forms of contact repeatedly over time against a victim who cannot easily defend himself/herself.
Cyber-bullying is the use of electronic media to threaten, abuse, defame or humiliate another individual.
Bullying by texts or messages or calls on mobile phones
The use of mobile phone cameras to cause distress, fear or humiliation
Posting threatening, abusive, defamatory or humiliating material on websites, to include blogs, personal websites, social networking sites
Using e-mail to message others
Hijacking/cloning e-mail accounts
Making threatening, abusive, defamatory or humiliating remarks in chat rooms, to include social media such as Facebook and YouTube.
All bullying is damaging but cyber-bullying and harassment can be invasive of privacy at all times. These acts may also be criminal acts.
In order to safeguard the institution’s student population from such attacks, SMMU asks that students adhere to the following guidelines:
Always respect others
Think before you send
Do not let anyone know your passwords
Block bullying messages
Do not answer abusive messages but log and report them
Do not delete anything (the material is important evidence as proof of cyber-bullying)
Do not give out personal information details
Never reply to abusive e-mails
Never reply to someone you do not know
If you have any questions or concerns about Cyber Bullying:
Mon-Fri, 9:30am – 4:30pm Eastern Phone Toll Free: 1-888-500-2380 or open a ticket using smmu.com/support.
J. Failure to Comply
1. Failure to comply with the directions of SMMU or public officials acting in the
performance of their duties on SMMU-owned or controlled property or supervised activities when such conduct constitutes a danger to personal/public safety or property is prohibited.
2. Failure to comply with any established SMMU policy is prohibited.
Faculty are to establish expectations for student course behavior. Faculty should set the tone for expected course behavior at the beginning of each term. This is best achieved by directly addressing policies regarding decorum, student misconduct, withdrawal policies, and by referring the student to the SMMU Student Code of Conduct. Faculty should remind students that any disruption of a positive learning environment in the classroom or actions which impede the ability of other students to learn or the ability of the professor to teach is a violation of the student conduct code.