Faculty FAQ

Classroom and instruction

If a student is being disruptive, am I allowed to ask them to leave the class?

Absolutely! This is addressed under Lifestyle Expectation #2 in the Catalog: Actions that interfere with the educational process or the administration of the University, including those that obstruct or disrupt the use of University premises, buildings, rooms, or passages, or which incite a disturbance are grounds for disciplinary action.

Can I post charts, maps, or other resources on classroom walls?

No. To be sensitive to other classes meeting in the room after you, please erase the white boards and remove anything that was displayed (on the walls, or elsewhere in the room) before your class session ends.

Am I allowed to cancel a class offering?

No, only your department chair may cancel courses.

What if a student doesn’t show up for class? When should I contact Student Academic Services?

If you, as instructor or advisor, receive notification that a student will not be attending, contact Student Academic Services and request that the student be administratively withdrawn from the course.

Additionally, if a student does not attend class within the first two days of the quarter, you may ask Student Academic Services to administratively withdraw that student from the class. (If a student knows that he or she will miss the first class, we ask the students to notify the instructor to avoid being withdrawn from the class.) SAS sends a reminder email to all faculty to take attendance and notify SAS by the 10th day of each quarter about any students who have not attended the course. SAS will follow up with the student and withdraw them if appropriate.

Do all classes meet on holidays?

Classes are not held on Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and over the Christmas holidays. Check the University Calendar for the most up-to-date information.

Evening classes (meeting after 4 p.m.) may be required to meet on certain holidays such as Veterans' Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and Memorial Day to meet the minimum required class hours. If you have questions, contact the Office of Academic Affairs or Student Academic Services.

What if there is inclement weather or other emergency?

Call the SPU School Closure Hotline at 206-281-2800 for up-to-date news about closures.

Grading-related information

What if a student stops attending class but shows up for the final exam?

If a student is still registered for a class at the end of the term, they retain the right to take the final exam or submit final coursework. During the quarter, if you become concerned about a student on your class roster missing class it is best to raise your concern through the Early Alert system for assistance.

Is there a standard grading breakdown used on campus?

Yes, as published in the academic catalog. A student’s grade point average (GPA) is determined by dividing the total number of grade points earned during a given period by the number of credits for which the student was enrolled and received a regular grade during the same period. For example, if a student earns 45 grade points during a quarter in which he or she is enrolled for 15 credits, the GPA for the quarter is 3.0.

What if I miss the grading deadline?

It is the instructor’s responsibility to meet all grade deadlines. Meeting deadlines is essential for providing students with timely grade reports and official transcripts. Late grade submittals can have serious ramifications for students.

If, due to a medical or family emergency, your grades will be late, contact your department chair or dean and Student Academic Services. Also send an email to your students. Please provide a proposed deadline for when your grades will be submitted.

School deans are notified quarterly of instructors who have not submitted grades by the quarterly grading deadline. The University Academic Calendar lists the quarterly grading deadlines. Grades may be submitted to SAS or entered via Banner.

What if I made an error in grading?

Grade changes due to clerical error must be corrected no later than one quarter following the quarter the original grade was assigned. You may submit the grade change by returning to the grade roster and locating and clicking on the “Change” button next to the student’s original grade. You will be asked to enter the updated grade along with a rationale for the change, then press submit. This will route the change past your dean for approval, then will be updated on the student’s transcript. NOTE: Instructors may not allow students to complete extra work in order to boost their original grade.

What if I catch a student cheating on a test or involved in plagiarism?

Expectations regarding academic integrity are outlined in Academic Policies and Procedures in the Undergraduate Catalog. Additional expectations may be defined in the class syllabus and/or department policy handbooks. Both students and the professor in each class have the obligation to report and prevent cheating, plagiarism, or other academic misconduct.

In the event that you suspect academic misconduct, or that such conduct is reported to you, adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Prior to a formal meeting, gather information from the student or others to determine any issues in question.
  • You must notify your department chair or dean for the purpose of information and guidance.
  • If you verify an act of academic dishonesty has occurred, you must make a reasonable attempt to hold a conference with the student to discuss the misconduct. At that time, explain the procedures for adjudicating the case.
    • If the student fails to respond in a timely manner to your request for a conference, you may turn over to the chair or dean for action. (See Student Standards of Conduct #2, 5, and 10.)
  • If, following the conference, you (or the chair or dean in the case of 2.1 above) are convinced that the student violated the academic integrity policy, the department chair or school dean will take appropriate action. The penalty imposed will be commensurate with the seriousness of the offense, ranging from loss of credit for the work in question to loss of credit for the entire course.
  • This decision(s) will be reported in writing to the student and the chair/dean. A copy of the decision(s) will be sent to the Vice-Provost. The Vice-Provost and the school dean will decide whether documentation of the incident and decision will be included in the student judicial record in the Office of Student Life.
  • If the student appeals any decision, the appeal will move through the process as outlined in Academic Appeals in on the Policies and Procedures section in the Undergraduate Catalog. A copy of all decisions, including appeals, will be sent to the office of the Vice-Provost and/or the Office of Student Life as determined by the Vice-Provost and dean.

How long do I need to keep my grading records?

It is up to each individual faculty member to determine his/her retention policy unless individual departments/schools have established a policy.

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