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Lake Superior State University

Academic Policies

Please familiarize yourself with the academic policies described in this catalog. They will help you obtain your educational objectives. Faculty advisors, staff and administrative personnel will also help you negotiate your way through these policies — seek their advice whenever you have questions!

Student Classifications

0 to 25 credits = freshman
26 to 55 credits = sophomore
56 to 87 credits = junior
88+ = senior

The Academic Year

Lake Superior State University operates on a semester system. There are two regular 15-week semesters (fall and spring) which begin in August or September and end in April or May. The summer semester consists of classes offered in two six-week sessions, or one 12-week session.  Please view the Important Dates for specific information for each semester.

Academic Credit

One credit is equal to 14 hours of classroom instruction in lecture/recitation courses. For example, a three-credit course might be scheduled 9-9:50 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday for 14 weeks plus one week for exams. Laboratory classes, field work or other non-lecture classes meet for more than one hour a week per credit.

You should expect to spend two hours of study or class preparation for each hour spent in class.

The average credit-hour load for full-time students is 16 credits. A minimum of 124 credits is required for all baccalaureate degrees; a minimum of 62 credits is required for all associate degrees.

Academic Transcripts

You may have an official copy of your permanent records sent to schools, companies and other places or persons of your choice. Complete and sign a Transcript Request Form and mail or fax it to the Registrar’s Office, 650 W. Easterday Avenue, Sault Ste. Marie, MI 49783. Your first official transcript requested is free; after, there is a $5 charge for each transcript. Student copy transcripts are issued directly to you and can be requested free of charge at the Registrar's Office in the Fletcher Center. You must show a picture I.D. Any financial or other obligations to the University must be cleared before a transcript is released. You may also print an unofficial transcript on-line using Anchor Access.

Student Curriculum Choice and Advising

When you apply for admission, you are asked to declare a major. The major you declare will determine which major department you are in and the academic advisor assigned to you. Please get to know your advisor well and meet with him/her often to get help in class selection, degree progress and career advice. You may change your major by processing a Major Change Form, available in Anchor Access and in the academic offices.  Major Change Forms must be filed with the Registrar’s Office for each major change.  If you are unsure of your major, you will be assigned to the Liberal Arts-Undecided major.

Semester Course Selection

Registration for the next semester takes place near the end of your current semester.

Three weeks before registration, course schedules listing times, dates and locations will be available online and in Anchor Access. Review the class offerings, read the instructions for scheduling, and meet with your advisor to select courses for the next semester.

You must sign up for classes for the semester in which you will be doing the actual work.

Please review all the registration information carefully as it has dates for registration according to class level, dates for tuition payments, and information regarding prerequisites, corequisites and other course requirements.

It is your responsibility to ensure that the classes you take count toward your degree program. You may, however, be required to take developmental courses (course numbers beginning with “0”, such as MATH087), which will not count toward graduation.

Test Scores: When you apply for admission, you will send your SAT or ACT scores to Lake Superior State University. Your scores determine the level of English and mathematics courses into which you will be placed. If you have been out of high school more than 26 months and have not taken the SAT or ACT, you will take placement tests at the Testing Center at Lake Superior State to determine your placement in English and mathematics.

Prerequisites: Many courses require that you complete English, reading and/or mathematics, or other preliminary classes before registering for the course.  If you are currently enrolled in a course which is prerequisite to a course you need the following semester, you may register for the course on the presumption you will successfully complete the current course.  If you do not earn the prerequisite grade required for the next course, you should consult your advisor and make a plan for an alternate course.   Exceptions may be made only by the dean of the college or the instructor of the course.

Maximum credit load: You may carry up to 20 credits per semester. You may take more credits if you have a 3.00 GPA or higher and have written approval from the appropriate dean. Students on academic probation should not take more than 15 credits.

Adding/Dropping courses through the Add/Drop Period: You may add or drop courses online using Anchor Access through the sixth day of the fall or spring semester. If you are attending a summer semester, you can add or drop courses online through the fourth day of the semester.

If you wish to add a course that is full or without having the necessary prerequisites, you must contact the instructor for that course to request permission. If the instructor approves the request, he/she will complete an Instructor Override for you. You must then go online and register for that course.

Courses dropped through the sixth day (fourth for summer semester) will not appear on your academic transcript.

Adding courses after the Add/Drop Period of the semester: Online registration ends on the sixth day of the semester (fourth for summer semester). If you wish to add a course after this date, you must have the instructor’s permission. You will need to complete a Schedule Adjustment Form, have the instructor sign it giving permission, and then process the form at the Registrar's Office, located in the Fletcher Center for Student Services.

Dropping courses after the Add/Drop Period of the semester: You may drop a full-semester course during the first eight weeks (40 days) of the semester. For courses running less than a full semester (e.g. seven-week class), check online for the official drop dates — the time period for dropping will be approximately equal to one-half of the course instructional period. If you drop a course, you will receive an N grade on your academic transcript. N grades are not counted in the academic GPA.

Repeat Policy

This policy is in effect for all students starting at Lake Superior State University as of the Fall Semester 2011.  You may repeat a class in which you earn a grade other than “W” or “N” only twice without special permission.

  1. Courses transferred from other institutions are included in this policy.
  2. Both the original and repeat grades will show on the transcript, but hours earned toward graduation will only count once.
  3. For the purpose of calculating the cumulative grade point average, only the grade of the last attempt will be used.

To repeat a course more than twice, the student must attain the permission of the course instructor and the dean of the college offering that course. Permission is only granted under extenuating circumstances.

Policy on substitutions or waivers for failed classes

If you fail a class required for your degree program, you must repeat the class and receive a passing grade. If the failed class is no longer offered because of program changes and/or course deletions, the dean may approve a substitution or waiver recommended by the academic chair. The chair must provide reasons for the recommendation on the substitution/waiver form which is sent to the dean’s office for approval.  Upon approval, the dean will then send the form to the Registrar's Office.


If you are an enrolled student and drop all of your classes during the first eight weeks of the fall or spring semester (dates vary for summer semester), you may be eligible for a partial tuition refund. You will need to complete a Withdrawal Form at the Registrar's Office.  (Please check online for the refund policy and dates.)

Before leaving, be sure you have cleared any holds on your records so you can return at a later date or have transcripts of your academic records sent.

Late Withdrawal: Students requesting a late withdrawal from one or all of their classes after the official drop date need to complete a Request for a Late Withdrawal and/or Tuition Appeal Form and have documented extenuating circumstances.   The decision to grant the late withdrawal and/or tuition appeal will be made by the Late Withdrawal Appeal Committee.  Appeals are reviewed in the order received and results may take from two to four weeks.  The need for additional documents may delay this timeframe.  All decisions by the committee are final and not subject to appeal.

Class Attendance

Regular class attendance and active participation in classes are important elements in the learning process. You are at the University primarily for the sake of intellectual growth and development. Attendance and participation provide appropriate opportunities for the evaluation of your progress.

You are personally responsible for the satisfactory completion of the course work prescribed by your instructors. This means that you are expected to attend classes regularly, and that you are responsible for the work assigned in class, the material covered in class, and for participation in class activities (including discussion and listening) designed by the instructor as part of the learning experience. However, mere physical attendance should not be a criterion for evaluation of your performance.

Participation in an official University function is an excused absence when approved by the provost. You will not be penalized for such participation. You are responsible for work missed and must confer with your instructor on this matter.

Grading System

Grades and Grade Points

Grade Grade Points per Credit
A+ 4.00
A Excellent 4.00
A- 3.70
B+ 3.30
B Good 3.00
B- 2.70
C+ 2.30
C Average 2.00
C- 1.70
D+ 1.30
D Inferior 1.00
D- 0.70
F Failure 0.00
I Incomplete 0.00
N No Grade 0.00
W Late Withdrawal 0.00
AU Audit 0.00
CR Credit 0.00

CR (undergraduate level) is equal to a 2.00

CR (graduate level) is equal to a 3.00

NC No Credit 0.00

Grade Point Average (GPA): To calculate your GPA for a semester, divide the total quality points earned by the GPA hours. GPA hours include those earned or failed but not those classes taken for credit/no credit. Cumulative GPA is calculated by dividing total quality points earned by the number of GPA hours carried in all semesters. If you repeat a course, count only the credits carried and the points of the last grade earned. Only the grade of your last attempt is calculated in your GPA.

A cumulative GPA of 2.00 for all credits is required for graduation. Further, a 2.00 cumulative grade point average for all credits in major, minor(s), and general education is required. Some programs require a higher GPA in the major curriculum.

“I” (incomplete) grade: Students may request an “I” (incomplete) grade for a course if extenuating circumstances beyond their control prevent the completion of the course requirements by the end of the semester. Examples of extenuating circumstances may include health issues, death of a parent/spouse/child, or military service.  Students and faculty must be aware that an "I" (incomplete) grade counts toward the student's attempted credits for a semester and may thus affect Satisfactory Academic Progress.  Students receiving financial aid must consult with the Financial Aid Office to discuss their specific situation when electing to drop a course or requesting an "I" (incomplete) grade.

Appropriate documentation is required. Students will need to be enrolled and have completed the majority of the work required for a course during the semester to be eligible to request an “I” (incomplete grade).  An “I” (incomplete) grade may be issued in a course that by design can not be completed in one semester.  An example of this type of course would be a study abroad course that requires the student to be out of the country until after the official semester end date.  An "I" (incomplete) grade shall not be issued as a midterm grade for any course.

Students must work with the instructor to complete all missing requirements by a date specified by the instructor. If a date is not given, the student will have a maximum of two semesters (excluding summer semesters) to complete the requirements for the course and to have the “I” (incomplete) grade changed to an appropriate final grade.  Students should not re-enroll in any class in which they currently have an "I" (incomplete) grade.

If the “I” (incomplete) grade has not been changed to an appropriate final grade by the end of two semesters (excluding summer semesters) the “I” (incomplete) grade will be changed to an “F” (failure) grade.

Students are not eligible to receive a degree or certificate with an "I" (incomplete) grade on their academic record.

N and W grades: These grades are given to those classes that you have officially dropped (N) or withdrawn (W).

Credit/No Credit Courses

You may enroll in some courses on a credit/no credit basis if you are in good academic standing. The following conditions exist:

  1. One course per semester may be taken as credit/no credit.
  2. Only 12 credits of courses taken as credit/no credit may be applied toward a degree.
  3. Courses that are required by your major, minor, or that are general education courses, can not be taken for credit/no credit.
  4. You apply at the Registrar’s Office to enroll for a credit/no credit course during the add/drop period; cannot change to regular grades after the add/drop period ends.
  5. You maintain a 2.00 (C average) in a course to receive a CR grade.
  6. Instructors are not notified that you are taking a course as credit/no credit; the CR or NC credit is assigned based on the grade your instructor submits.
  7. Certain courses are always offered with a credit/no credit format. These courses have this information in the official course description and course syllabi. The policy and limitations outlined above do not apply to these courses.

Auditing a Class

Audits are designed for someone who wishes to take a particular course for its content but not be graded for the course. An LSSU student may register for any course on an audit basis provided all prerequisites have been satisfied.    Normal tuition and fees are charged for audited courses.

The coursework for auditing a course is determined in conjunction with the faculty member for the course.

Auditing courses does not count as part of a student’s official class load for determining financial aid eligibility, veteran’s benefits or any other enrollment certification requirements.

Students may change from an audit to credit status during the first week of classes and only with the concurrence of the faculty member for the course. This change must be processed through the Registrar’s Office for grading purposes.

Senior Audit Policy

Residents of Michigan who are 60 years of age or older may take undergraduate courses at Lake Superior State University without paying tuition (tuition is waived).  Such residents may register on an audit basis for any undergraduate course offered by the University, provided that space is available, and the individual meets the prerequisites or has the permission of the instructor.  Verification of age must be provided to the Registrar.

Those participating in course work under this program shall be entitled to full classroom participation, and may complete all assignments and examinations for evaluation by the instructor.  The purchase of textbooks, program fees, special course fees, and required materials shall be the responsibility of the participant.  The student's name will not appear on an instructor's official class list or grade roster and no grade will be recorded for the student in the Registrar's Office.

Dean's List

Full time students carrying at least 12 graded credits of college-level courses (100 level or above) in a semester with a grade point average (gpa) of 3.500 or higher, and NOT having any incomplete ("I") grades, will earn Dean’s List honors, which acknowledge outstanding academic achievement.

If a grade is changed within 30 days from the end of the semester because of an instructor error in the recording of a grade, or because the student has completed the work required to resolve an Incomplete ("I") grade, the student will be considered for Dean’s List honors.

Effective fall semester 2006, students earning Dean’s List honors will have this designation noted on their LSSU academic transcript.

Prior Learning Policy

Credit for Prior Learning (CPL)

LSSU recognizes that students may acquire expertise, skills and knowledge through individual study, employment, military training, community service or other experiences outside of the normal college setting, which is known as prior learning.  LSSU credit may be awarded for prior learning through successful completion of standardized examination programs, (e.g. CLEP, Advanced Placement, DANTES), credit recommendations of the American Council of Education, or successful completion of  “departmental examinations”. Credit may also be awarded upon successful completion of an individual Prior Learning Portfolio that documents the demonstration of learning outcomes for a specific course or set of courses.

All prior learning credits are considered transfer credits and are subject to the same policies as other transfer credits.  Discuss your prior learning experience with your academic advisor, chair or dean for more information.

University residency requirements apply to all forms of prior learning (e.g. a minimum of 30 credits of the 124 credits required for an LSSU baccalaureate degree must be earned using LSSU coursework).  See the Academic Catalog for the complete residency policy.

CPL Portfolio Program

The CPL Portfolio program grants credit after a successful faculty evaluation, and Dean approval, of a portfolio that demonstrates mastery of the learning outcomes for a specific course or set of courses.  Unlike typical course articulations, no list of equivalencies exists since every person’s prior learning experience can vary significantly. It is only through the CPL Portfolio review process that equivalencies are identified and credit awarded. Because of this, not all Lake Superior State University courses are eligible for CPL Portfolio review. Credits awarded through the CPL Portfolio review support a student's goals and are applied to a specific academic degree program. A typical portfolio will capture prior learning experiences from work experience (based on past employment), past training (such as classes, workshops, seminars, etc.), and life experiences (long-term activities that may have resulted in college level learning). The University provides guidelines and assistance for CPL Portfolio development through the School of Arts and Letters.

If you are interested in pursuing credit for prior learning through a CPL Portfolio, you should contact the Dean or the Chair of the School of Arts and Letters to review the process. After that meeting, you will be directed to a dean or multiple deans to review your request(s).

CPL Portfolio Criteria:

In order to be considered for CPL Portfolio credit review, a student must be currently enrolled in a degree program and his/her cumulative GPA must be a minimum of 2.00, or higher where required by the program. Furthermore:

  1. All CPL Portfolio credit is considered non-LSSU credit (transfer credit) and is limited by LSSU policy to 60 credits and only 16 credits may be used to fulfill 400 level coursework.
  2. CPL Portfolio-based credit may only be awarded for content which applies to the student’s degree program. Approved CPL will appear on a student’s transcript.
  3. CPL credit may not be applied to fulfill the University’s residency requirement.
  4. CPL credit may not be used to satisfy the General Education Requirements of the University.

CPL Portfolio Guidelines:

  1. Portfolios must be submitted to the Dean of the College or School responsible for the content review by the 12th Friday of the semester (two weeks before final examinations) during the academic year, or by the 2nd Friday in July for the summer semester.  Students are not eligible to submit a CPL Portfolio in their anticipated term of completion (e.g. graduation term).

  2. Credit will be granted for college-level learning and only for courses required for LSSU degrees.

  3. Credit for any specific instance of prior learning can only be awarded once (e.g. credit for knowledge gained in mathematics cannot be awarded once through CLEP then again petitioned through a CPL Portfolio or transfer credit).  All CPL Portfolio requests must be submitted at one time to facilitate coordination of credit awarded, and separate portfolios must be submitted to each School for all credits which the student seeks to have evaluated within the school.

  4. The CPL Portfolio may be used to award credit for specific LSSU courses or for general elective credit applicable to the degree program.  The amount of credit to be allowed through portfolio evaluation identification of specific courses for substitution, if any, and the fulfillment of graduation requirement, if any, is determined by the Dean of the appropriate school under advisement of the school faculty.

  5. While the School of Arts and Letters faculty provide general guidance and assistance, it is each student's responsibility to complete a narrative and a portfolio of documentation, which will be the basis for awarding credit.

  6. To assist students interested in developing a portfolio for this purpose, the University may provide an elective portfolio course (e.g. USEM201 Prior Learning Portfolio Development).

  7. CPL Portfolios will be evaluated on the alignment of learning evidenced with the specific course’s or program’s learning outcomes.  Elements in the portfolio may include documentations of leadership and community service experiences, professional work experiences, creative contributions to society, and completion of professional training.

  8. CPL Portfolios will be evaluated by faculty qualified to teach the course(s) for which the portfolio has been submitted.

  9. Credit under this program cannot be obtained for learning when proficiency exams are required b the appropriate department.

  10. Formal CPL Portfolio review to evaluate for credit requires an initial $50 processing fee for each CPL Portfolio submitted using the CPL Portfolio Review Form.  If approval is received, the student will be required to pay an additional $75 per awarded credit.

Grade Appeal Policy

Lake Superior State University has established procedures for students to appeal the final course grade.  The only concerns that may be grounds for an appeal are the grades, and the consistent application of class requirements and policies as they pertain to grades.  As with other concerns, a student may also want to consult with the Student Ombudsman,, to discuss the matter.

A student who has concerns regarding a final course grade may take the following steps:

  1. Contact the course instructor and discuss the concern(s).  This will serve as an informal review and an opportunity for open dialog regarding the concern(s).
  2. If the informal review does not lead to a satisfactory resolution the student may choose to file a formal appeal.  The appeal must be filed in writing with the School Chair within 20 university working days of the posting of the final grade. The Chair shall respond to the appeal in writing to the student and instructor within five (5) university working days upon receipt of the appeal. The appeal shall include:
    • The Grade Appeal Record of Action Form
    • Statement of Appeal: this should be brief and specific
    • Justification: reasons for lodging the appeal should be presented with supporting evidence (all  documentation must be provided at this point)
    • Remedy: a specific remedy should be cited.
  3. If the School Chair’s response does not lead to a satisfactory resolution the student may, within three (3) university working days of receipt of the response, request formal review of the appeal by the Dean of the College/School.  The student shall deliver the appeal documentation to the Dean who shall respond in writing to the student, the course instructor,  the Chair, and the Provost within five (5) university working days upon receipt.
  4. If the appeal timelines stated above are not met by the student the appeal is considered closed and no further action is required.  If the appeal timelines stated above are not met by the university personnel the appeal can be advanced by the student to the next step.  The Provost may grant an extension in time at any step due to extenuating circumstances; such extensions will be documented on the Grade Appeal Record of Action.
  5. If steps 1-4 do not lead to a resolution of the concern the student may petition the Provost, within three (3) university working days of receipt of the Dean’s response, to convene an ad hoc Grade Review Board for a formal hearing of the appeal.  The student shall deliver to the Office of the Provost the completed Grade Appeal Record of Action and all documentation required as evidence to the appeal.

The members of the Grade Review Board, appointed by the Provost or his/her designee, shall include a Dean of a college other than that in which the course is housed, two faculty members from schools other than that of the course, and two students of junior or senior standing.  Copies of all documentation will be provided to members of the Grade Review Board, the professor and the student.  No new documentation will be introduced at the Hearing.  The Provost or his/her designee will convene the Grade Review Board Hearing and may participate in deliberations; however, he/she will not cast a vote should there be dispute in determining recommendations.

At the Grade Review Board Hearing, the student shall present his/her argument, followed by the professor’s response.  The Board shall promptly prepare a written recommendation and forward copies to all parties involved, including the student, course instructor, Chairperson, Dean,  and Provost.  The report shall include dissenting opinions on the Board, if any.  Recommendations of the Board are advisory to the Provost, who will make a final determination.  Records of each case heard by the Board shall be maintained in the office of the Provost.

General Information:

A university working day (UWD) refers to those days when the university is in normal operation, and university offices are open for business.

“Receipt” refers to the day upon which the appropriate document(s) are officially initialed by the person(s) designated. 

The Provost may establish appropriate and reasonable extensions of time in cases where the student is not actively enrolled in the current semester, or where the course instructor is not assigned teaching duties for the current semester.

Undergraduate Academic Standing

Full- and Part-Time Students Academic Probation and Dismissal Policy

For Undergraduate Coursework

Effective Summer 2005

Cumulative GPA Hours Carried at LSSU

Minimum for Good  Standing*

On Probation


1 - 18.9


less than 2.00

two consecutive semesters on  probation

19 - or more


less than 2.00

two consecutive semesters on probation

or 1.60 or less gpa

You will be dismissed for academic deficiencies if you are on probation for two consecutive semesters at Lake Superior State University. If your cumulative GPA Hours (as shown on your transcript) are 19 or more and your grade point average is 1.60 or less, you will be dismissed. GPA Hours are those used in figuring your grade point average. Classes not at the 100-level or above are not counted in the GPA Hours. Classes with grades of CR/NC are not counted in the GPA Hours.

*A cumulative grade point average of 2.00 for all credits carried at Lake Superior State University and a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 for all courses required in your major, minor and general education is necessary for graduation (effective fall 2007).

  1. You will be on academic probation if your cumulative grade point average falls below 2.00. Academic Probation limits you to 15 credits. You must contact your advisor to adjust your schedule before classes start for the next semester.

  2. If you are on probation for two consecutive semesters (summer semester included if you are enrolled in summer classes), you will be academically dismissed or, if your cumulative GPA Hours are 19 or more and your grade point average is 1.60 or less, you will be academically dismissed. Your classes for the next semester(s) will be deleted.

  3. After a first or second dismissal you may choose one of the following options:

    1. Allow two semesters (summer may be counted for one semester) to elapse before re-enrollment,


    2. Petition the Scholastic Standards Committee for immediate readmission should extenuating circumstances exist. This action is initiated with the Chair of the Scholastic Standards Committee. The Committee can either permit early readmission with specific conditions required of you or deny your request. Subsequent to the Committee’s denial, you can further appeal in writing to the Provost, whose decision is final.

  4. If you continue after a dismissal, you will be dismissed again after any semester in which your cumulative grade point average falls below a 2.00. The Registrar may allow you to continue “on probation,” with the record showing “on probation” instead of “academic dismissal” if your record has shown improvement during the semester and you have a 2.00 grade point average in courses carried for that semester.

  5. If you are dismissed a third time, you will not be reinstated without the permission of the Provost. Three semesters must elapse from the time of dismissal before you may petition for readmission. Summer may be counted for one semester.

  6. The Scholastic Standards Committee may dismiss you from the university for demonstrated academic dishonesty.

Graduate Academic Standing

Full- and Part-Time Students Academic Probation and Dismissal Policy

For Graduate Level Coursework

Effective Summer 2011

A cumulative grade point average of 3.00 for all graduate credits carried at Lake Superior State University and a minimum grade of B for each course, including courses transferred into the program, are required for graduation.

  1. You will be on academic probation if your cumulative grade point average falls below 3.00. Academic Probation limits you to six (6) credits. You must contact your advisor to adjust your schedule before classes start for the next semester.

  2. If you are on probation for more than two consecutive semesters (summer semester included if you are enrolled in summer classes), you will be academically dismissed. Your classes for the next semester will be deleted.

  3. After a first or second dismissal you may choose one of the following options:

    1. Allow two semesters (summer may be counted for one semester) to elapse before re-enrollment,


    2. Petition the Scholastic Standards Committee for immediate readmission should extenuating circumstances exist. The Committee can either permit early readmission with specific conditions required of you or deny your request. Subsequent to the Committee's denial, you can further appeal to the Provost, whose decision is final.

  4. If you continue after a dismissal, you will be dismissed again after any semester in which your cumulative grade point falls below a 3.00. The Registrar may allow you to continue "on probation," with the record showing "on probation" instead of "academic dismissal" if your record has shown improvement during the semester and you have a 3.00 grade point average in courses carried for that semester.

  5. If you are dismissed a third time, you will not be reinstated without the permission of the Provost.  Three semesters must elapse from the time of dismissal before you may petition the Provost for readmission. Summer may be counted for one semester.

  6. The Scholastic Standards Committee may dismiss you from the university for demonstrated academic dishonesty.

Cheating and Plagiarism: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a key component of the core values of Lake Superior State University. All members of the University community are expected to be honorable and ethical and observe standards of conduct appropriate to a community of scholars. Students are expected to behave in an ethical manner. The University community will not tolerate academic dishonesty as such behavior will cause harm to the reputation of students, faculty, and graduates of the institution. Such dishonorable behavior includes, but is not limited to, cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, and obtaining an unfair advantage. These terms are defined below:


Cheating is defined as using or attempting to use unauthorized materials or information of any kind during an exam or graded assignment of any kind. Using notes, texts, help from individuals, or copying information from another individual’s exam, or by using electronic or any other means constitutes cheating unless such resources are EXPLICITLY allowed by the instructor.


Fabrication is any unauthorized falsification, invention, or copying of data, falsification of information, citations, or bibliographic references in any academic work. It also includes falsifying any academic record or other University document.


Plagiarism is representing someone else’s work as one’s own. Failing to cite references or presenting material, verbatim or paraphrased, that is not acknowledged and cited also constitutes plagiarism.

Obtaining an Unfair Advantage

Academic integrity is violated when one obtains an unfair advantage by stealing, reproducing, circulating, or otherwise gaining access to examination materials before they are distributed by the instructor. Also prohibited are stealing, destroying, defacing, or concealing library materials with the purpose of depriving others of their use.

Possible Sanctions for Offenses

It is in the best interest of the University community to sanction any individual who chooses not to accept the principles of academic honesty by engaging in the above acts. Appropriate sanctions may include failure of an assignment or exam, failure of a course, or dismissal from the University.

Faculty and University Responsibilities

Unless the faculty member has explicitly specified otherwise, students are to assume that exams are individual, closed book, and without the use of notes or similar reference materials. Unless specifically allowed by the faculty member, papers, projects, and similar products are expected to be the original individual work of the student. If notes, texts, other reference materials, group work or similar activities are to be allowed, the faculty member will specify what is permitted for a particular assignment or exam prior to disseminating the assignment or exam.

A faculty member who observes a violation in one or more of the above areas shall meet with the student to address the violation. If, in the judgment of the faculty member, academic integrity has been violated, the faculty member will impose the appropriate sanction, either a failure for the assignment or exam, or failure for the course. The faculty member will then file an Academic Integrity Incident Report with the department chair, dean, the Provost’s Office, and the office of Student Affairs. This report will be kept in the Provost’s Office as well as in the office of the Vice President of Student Affairs for a period of five years. A copy of this report will also be placed in the student’s advising file. Academic Departments or Schools may have additional policies and procedures that could provide further recommendations to the Provost’s Office when instances of academic dishonesty are suspected. This policy is also applicable in the Testing Center.

In cases of egregious or repeated violations, it may be determined by the faculty member, his/her department chair, or dean, that dismissal from the University is warranted. In this case, the chair of the Scholastic Standards Committee and the student will be notified. The Scholastic Standards Committee will then conduct a hearing in which the student is granted due process. If the committee decides that dismissal from the university is warranted, the student will have five school days to appeal the decision to the Provost of the University. The Provost may either affirm the decision to dismiss, or reinstate the student and provide a rationale for doing so.


Everyone is expected to show respect for University and individual property.  Theft of any kind, whether of money, property, or services, violates the entire community and will not be tolerated.  Destruction or mutilation of books, magazines, or other library material is considered a form of theft.  Theft, damage or destruction of University property, or the property of others, is considered a serious offense against the University community and may result in penalties including the issuance of fines, removal from the campus, dismissal from the University, and/or criminal prosecution.  If you have anything stolen while on University property, please notify the Public Safety Department by calling 635-2210 as soon as possible.

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Section 438 of the General Education Provisions Act, as amended, sets forth the requirements to be met by an educational institution to protect the privacy of students. This act is called the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and shall be referred to hereafter the Act. The Act generally governs access to student educational records and the release of such records. The Act also requires that institutions of higher education must provide students access to official records directly related to the student and an opportunity for a hearing to challenge such records on the grounds that they are inaccurate, misleading or inappropriate. Educational institutions must also obtain written consent before releasing personally identifiable data about students from records to other than a specified list of exceptions. In addition, students must be notified of these rights.

In accordance with provisions of the Act and the regulations enacted by the U.S. Department of Education, Lake Superior State University has adopted the following policies and procedures:

Section 1. General Policy on Access and Disclosure

Lake Superior State University shall not as a matter of policy or practice:

  1. Deny or prevent students at the University the right to inspect or review the educational records of such students,


  2. Permit the release of educational records contrary to the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and the policies and procedures set forth in the following sections.

Section 2. Notification to Students

Under the provisions of the Act, the University must annually notify students of their rights and the institution policies pertaining to the Act. In addition, notice must be given to the location where the policy can be obtained as well as to inform the students of the right to file complaints with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the University to comply with the Act. In accordance with these requirements the annual notice regarding students’ rights, the location of copies of the University’s policies setting forth these rights, as well as the right to file complaints with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Office, shall be published in the University Catalog. The annual letter to students will notify students of directory information.

The registrar is the hearing officer for the Act and is responsible for implementing the notification requirements and the distribution of copies of the policies and procedures.

Section 3. Education Records Defined

“Education records” means those records which:

  1. Directly relate to a student or
  2. Are maintained by the University or its agent.

The term does not include:

  1. Records of institutional, supervisory, and administrative personnel which:
    1. are in the sole possession of the maker thereof, and
    2. are not accessible or revealed to any other individual except a substitute.
    A substitute is defined as one who performs, on a temporary basis, the duties of the individual who made the record. It does not refer to an individual who permanently succeeds the maker of the record in his or her position.
  2. Records of the law enforcement unit of the University (Security Department) which are:
    1. maintained apart from the University’s educational records;
    2. maintained solely for law enforcement purposes; and
    3. not disclosed to individuals other than law enforcement officials of the same jurisdiction, provided that educational records maintained by the University are not disclosed to the personnel of the law enforcement unit.
  3. Records relating to an individual who is employed by the University which:
    1. are made and maintained in the normal course of business;
    2. relate exclusively to the individual in that individual’s capacity as an employee; and
    3. are not available for use for any other purpose.
    4. This paragraph (3) does not apply to records relating to an individual in attendance at the University who is employed as a result of his or her status as a student.
  4. Records relating to an eligible student which are:
    1. created or maintained by a physician, psychiatrist, psychologist, or other recognized professional or paraprofessional acting in a professional or paraprofessional capacity, or assisting in that capacity;
    2. created, maintained, or used only in connection with the provision of treatment to the student; and
    3. not disclosed to anyone other than individuals providing the treatment; provided, that the records can be personally reviewed by a physician or other appropriate paraprofessional of the student’s choice. For the purpose of this definition, “treatment” does not include remedial educational activities or activities which are part of programs of instruction at the university.
  5. Records of the university which contain only information relating to a person after that person is no longer a student at the University. An example of these records would be information collected by the University pertaining to the accomplishments of its alumni.

Section 4. Rights to Inspect and Review Education Records

A student who is enrolled at or has attended Lake Superior State University has the right to inspect and review his/her educational records subject to the limitations set forth in Section 3 and 13.

The educational record recorded by the student will be provided within a reasonable period of time defined by availability of staff time and the records. Records will be provided no more than 45 days after the request is made.

The right to review educational records includes the right to a response from Lake Superior State University to reasonable requests for explanation and interpretations of the subject record.

Section 5. Procedures for Inspection and Review of Records

A written request for the inspection is required for review of educational records or release of records, where permitted, to third parties. See Section 10A for release of records to third parties. The request must be submitted to the appropriate officer. See Section 7 for list of officials maintaining educational records.

The written request under this section must contain:

  1. A description of the information requested,
  2. The date, if any, that the information is required,
  3. The student’s signature, and
  4. The date the request is filed.

Section 6. Copies of Records: Fees for Copies

Copies of educational records will be provided under the Act under the following conditions:

  1. Where failure to provide a copy would effectively prevent a student from exercising the right to inspect and review the educational record. (Examples of when this provision would be effective would be absence from the state or a confining illness.) If the student will return to the residence occupied while attending the University or be within 30 miles of campus and is not physically incapacitated during the 45-day compliance period, copies shall not be provided but the right of inspection may be exercised. Under this provision, a written request is required (see Section 10A) specifying the record to be disclosed and the reason that a personal inspection of the record cannot be made during the 45-day compliance period. Requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis to determine if copies are required as opposed to personal inspection.
  2. On request, under the provisions of Section 10B regarding records to officials of another educational institution in which the student is enrolled or seeks or intends to enroll.
  3. On request, or with the consent of the student, under the provisions of Section 10A, regarding information released with the approval of the University to third parties. The University shall not charge a fee for copies of records provided under the Act. There is not a charge for search, retrieval or inspection of the record. Copies of records provided under these provisions do not carry the University seal or official signature of approval.

Section 7. Listing of Location of Education Records

The following is a list of the records considered educational in nature under the Act and their locations listed by Office, Type of Record, Responsible Official, and Location.

  • Admissions; Academic file, Financial; Director of Admissions; Hillside House
  • Career Advising and Placement; Academic, Personal, evaluations; Director; Library
  • Continuing Education; Academic; Director; Library
  • Human Resources; Work Evaluation, Employment; Director; Administration Building
  • Financial Aid; Financial, Academic, Personal evaluation, Employment; Director; Fletcher Center
  • Graduate Office; Academic, Financial; Coordinator; Crawford Hall
  • Registrar’s Office; Academic (complete and official academic record), Personal, Veterans Affairs; Registrar; Fletcher Center
  • Residence Halls; Personal; Housing Manager; Cisler Center
  • Residence Halls and Student Life; Discipline; Director for Student Programs and Services; Cisler Center
  • Student Accounts; Financial; Director Business Operation; Fletcher Center
  • Academic Areas, Academic; School/Department Chairs.

Note: All academic records are partial records with the exception of the Registrar’s Office as noted above.

Section 8. Disclosure of Restricted Information to University Officials

Personally identifiable information from the education records of a student may be disclosed without the prior consent of the student to University officials who have a legitimate educational interest in the information. The University officials must demonstrate a need to obtain the information consistent with their official functions and the request must be consistent with normal professional practices and legal requirements.

The disclosure of personally identifiable student information under the above conditions will not be disclosed to any other party without the prior written consent of the student, except that such information may be used by the appropriate officials or agents of the University for the purpose for which the disclosure was made.

Section 9. University Officials

For the purpose of these procedures and policies, University officials are those individuals who have demonstrated a need for access to student records consistent with official University responsibilities and professional practices.

University officials include: Members of the faculty, professional, executive and administrative staff, including the Public Safety Department, departmental secretaries, student employees who manage student education record information, students properly appointed as members of a hearing panel or screening committee, representatives of the State Auditor General when performing their legally required duties, legal, insurance, or collection representatives of the University when performing their university-related duties requiring student record information concerning a claim or legal matter.

Section 10. Disclosure of Personally Identifiable Information

A. Prior Consent for Disclosure Required

The University shall obtain the written consent of the student before disclosing personally identifiable information from their education records to third parties other than directory information. Consent is not required where the disclosure is to the student.

If the University consents to the release of personally identifiable student information to third parties under this section (10A) at the written request of the student, the University will also provide the student with a copy.

The written consent required under this section (10A) must be signed and dated by the student and shall include:

  1. A specification of the record to be disclosed.
  2. The purpose of the disclosure.
  3. The party or class of parties to whom disclosure may be made.
  4. A statement granting consent for the release of the information.

B. Prior Consent for Disclosure Not Required

The University may transfer or disclose the educational records of a student, without prior written consent, on request to the officials of another educational institution in which the student is enrolled or intends to enroll.

The University, upon request, will provide the student with a copy of the transferred educational records.

Information from the educational records of a student may be disclosed, without prior written consent, if the disclosure is:

  1. To federal and state authorities as provided by the Act or other legal authority.
  2. In connection with financial aid for which a student has applied or received; provided that the information may be disclosed only:
    1. to determine the eligibility for financial aid,
    2. to determine the amount of aid
    3. to determine the conditions that will be imposed regarding financial aid, or
    4. to enforce the terms or conditions of the financial aid.
  3. To organizations conducting studies on behalf of educational agencies or institutions for developing, validating, or administering predictive tests, administering student aid programs; and improving instruction; provided that the studies are conducted in a manner which does not permit personal identification of students by persons other than the representatives of the organization. The information must be destroyed when it is no longer needed for the purpose for which the study was conducted.
  4. To accrediting organizations in order to carry out their accrediting functions.
  5. To comply with a judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena; provided that Lake Superior State University will make a reasonable effort to notify the student of the order or subpoena in advance of compliance.
  6. To appropriate parties in an emergency to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals.

Section 11. Directory Information

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act permits the disclosure of certain personally identifiable information from the educational record of a student if that information is designated as directory information as defined by the Act.

In order to release such information the University is required to provide public notice of the following:

  1. The categories of personally identifiable information designated as directory information.
  2. The right of the student to refuse to permit the designation of any or all of the categories with respect to that student.
  3. The time which the student must inform the University in writing that such directory information is not to be released.

In compliance with these provisions, the University will announce its intention to release directory information each fall in the annual letter. Written requests to prohibit or restrict the use of directory information should be addressed by the last day of the add/drop period to the Registrar’s Office.

The University considers the following as directory information: name, address, telephone number, place of birth, e-mail address, enrollment status (e.g., undergraduate or graduate, full time or part time) major field of study, dates of attendance, degrees, honors and awards received, including scholarships, most recent previous educational agency or institution attended by student, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and height and weight of members of the athletic teams.

In the event that this list is altered or expanded, these provisions will be amended in accordance with the Act.

Section 12. Record of Disclosures Required to be Maintained

Lake Superior State University shall for each request and disclosure of personally identifiable information from a student’s education records maintain a register within that file of the education records which indicates:

  1. The parties who have requested or obtained information.
  2. The legitimate educational interests the parties have in obtaining the information.

A record is not required for disclosures to a student, disclosures pursuant to the student’s written consent when consent is specific to the party or parties, disclosures to University officials as set forth in Section 9, or disclosures of directory information as provided in Section 11.

The record of disclosures may be inspected by: the student, University officials and assistants responsible for the custody of the records, and university officials authorized in Section 9 and persons outside the University as authorized in Section 10 for the purpose of auditing the record keeping procedures of the institution.

Section 13. Limitation on the Right to Inspect and Review Records

The University is not required to permit a student to inspect or review the following records:

  1. Financial records and statements of parents or any information contained therein.
  2. Confidential letters and statements of recommendation placed in the student record prior to January 1, 1975; provided that such letters and statements were solicited with written assurance of confidentiality or sent and retained with a documented understanding of confidentiality. The documents must be used only for the purposes specifically intended.
  3. Confidential letters and statements of recommendation and statements for which the student has waived the right to inspection as set forth in Section 16 and placed in a student’s file after January 1, 1975 respecting:
    1. admission, or
    2. application for employment, or
    3. receipt of an honor or honorary recognition.
  4. Those records which are defined not to be education records as set forth in Section 3

If the educational record of a student contains information on more than one student, the requesting student may review or inspect or be informed of only the specified information which pertains to the student making the inquiry.

Section 14. Request to Amend Educational Records

A student who believes information in the student’s educational records is inaccurate, misleading or violates the privacy or other rights of the student may request the University amend such records.

The procedures regarding amendment to a student record are:

  1. Submission of a written request to amend the record in question to the University office responsible for the content of the record.
  2. A written request specifying the information to be amended and the basis for requesting a change in the record.
  3. The written request should also suggest the recommended corrective action.
  4. The University official responsible for establishing the content of the record in question within 14 calendar days will inform, in writing, the student that the record will be amended or the request is denied. If additional time is required to make a decision, the student will be advised of that period required.
  5. Amendments and corrections will be completed within 14 calendar days of the date of notice to the students.
  6. If the University official responsible for establishing the content of the educational record denies the request to amend the record, the written notice of this decision will advise the student of the right to a hearing.

Section 15. Right to a Hearing

The Act provides an opportunity for a hearing to challenge the content of a student’s educational record to insure that the record does not contain inaccurate or misleading information or violates the privacy or other rights of the student. This procedure can not be used to challenge grades. The following procedure defines the process after the decision of denial.

Procedure of Hearing

A student desiring a hearing on a denial to amend the record by the official establishing such records must:

  1. Submit a written request for a hearing to the hearing officer and the registrar.
  2. Designate in the request: the student’s name and identification number, date of request, specific information on the record challenged, basis for amending record, summary statement of previous action taken to amend record including names of individuals contacted and from whom communications have been received.

The hearing officer will, within seven calendar days of receipt of the request for hearing, notify the student of the hearing date, time and location. At least 72 hours notice prior to the hearing will be provided to involved parties.

A full and fair opportunity is available to present evidence relevant to the question of whether the record in question is inaccurate, misleading or in violation of the privacy or other rights of the students.

The student may be assisted or represented by any individual, including an attorney, at their own expense.

The hearing officer will render a decision on the appeal within seven calendar days of hearing’s conclusion. The decision shall be in writing and based solely upon the evidence presented at the hearing. The written decision to the student shall include a summary of the evidence and reasons for the decision.

If, as a result of the hearing, the hearing officer rules the information is inaccurate, misleading or in violation of any of the student’s rights, the record in question will be amended within seven calendar days of the decision.

If, as a result of the hearing, the hearing officer determines that the record should not be amended, the student shall be informed of the right to place in the education record a statement commenting upon the information and setting forth the reasons for disagreeing with the University’s decision.

Any explanation placed in the record of the student under this provision shall:

  1. Be maintained as a part of the record as long as the record or the contested portion thereof is retained by the University, and
  2. Be disclosed by the University, along with the contested record to any party receiving such record.

Section 16. Waivers

A student may waive any right under the Act. The waiver shall not be valid unless it is in writing and signed by the student. The University may not require that a student waive any right under the Act. This requirement does not preclude the University from requesting such a waiver.

An applicant for admission or a student in attendance may waive the right to inspect and review confidential letters and statements of recommendation. The waiver applies to letters or statements only if it is in writing and designated by the student and if:

  1. The applicant or student is notified of the names of those providing letters or statements.
  2. The documents are used only for the purpose intended.
  3. The waiver is not required as a condition of admission or receipt of any service or benefit from the University.

A waiver may be revoked, but that action must be in writing and filed with the office in possession of the waiver.

Students have the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by Lake Superior State University to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and the address of the office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-5901

Additional Information

Lake Superior State University complies with Section 113 of the Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Technical Education Act and Section 122 of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998. LSSU uses the student’s SSN in order to compile required WIA and Perkins Act reports.

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