Jul 14, 2024  
ACE Catalog - Volume 25 
ACE Catalog - Volume 25 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Student Handbook - Additional Policies for Students

Please take time to review (or re-review in a few cases) important policies that relate to a student’s behavior at ACE. 

Ability to Accept Gifts

ACE faculty and staff cannot accept gifts of any kind, cash or otherwise, from students, family members of students, or anyone representing a student.

Alcohol and Drug Policy

All graduates of ACE will be invited to attend Commencement. As Commencement is a College event, the following policy applies:

No one under the legal drinking age shall be served or allowed to sell, purchase, or consume alcoholic beverages on College property or at College sponsored events, except as outlined in the following policy and regulations:

  • The College may allow alcoholic beverages to be served to persons of legal age at meetings or social gatherings officially sponsored by the College if approved by the President. Approval is dependent upon adequate measures to preclude the serving of alcoholic beverages to persons under the legal age.
  • The possession, use, or sale of drugs and other controlled substances is a federal and state offense subject to fines and imprisonment. It is the policy of the College to uphold these laws. In any instance where a violation of the law concerning drugs occurs on campus or in connection with the activities of College students, the disciplinary policy of the College will permit taking action beyond or separate from any which may be taken by civil authorities. This action may range from a fine to an expulsion.


Commencement is the celebratory event for graduates. Students who are in good standing, either in graduate status, pending graduate status, or anticipated to graduate close to commencement may attend the ceremony by completing the appropriate graduation forms.. “Pending” status implies all academic and financial obligations will be completed within a reasonable timeframe related to commencement.

In addition to the above requirements, Ed.D. students must successfully defend their dissertation at least 30 days prior to commencement. If the dissertation is not successfully defended for any reason, the candidate will no longer be able to participate in commencement.  ACE will hold an annual commencement and will communicate, via email, with all graduates in regards to commencement information as it becomes available.  Students who have met the criteria above will be invited to participate in the commencement ceremony. Students must complete the ACE online Commencement Participation Form to participate in the ceremony.

Conferral Process

Upon completion of his/her last class, students are moved to a “Pending Graduate/Complete” status - this status can be seen on MyACE Portal. Once in this status, the conferral process begins. A complete degree audit is performed by the Registration Office to ensure the following requirements have been met:

  1. Minimum Cumulative GPA: 3.0 for Graduate Programs, 2.0 for Undergraduate Programs, and 2.5 for all Certificate Programs (please note a 3.0 GPA is required for the BSN to be conferred during the RN to MSN program). 
  2. All courses successfully completed (no D’s or F’s): Degree Programs and Transition to Teaching.
  3. All Courses with earned grades of D’s or F’s were retaken for students in the programs listed above.
  4. GPA calculation is accurate and reflects any retakes.
  5. Field experiences (if required) have been completed, reviewed and confirmed. 
  6. Have completed the specified degree program within the maximum timeframe allowed.
  7.  All courses have been completed.
  8. Financial obligations have been met.

Once the above takes place and students have been cleared, degree students are moved to “Graduate” status while certificate students are moved to “ND-Complete” Status. Students are then eligible to receive appropriate documentation, including but not limited to, a diploma, transcript, verification, and certificates.  If any of the above requirements are not met, the student status will still be moved to “Complete-Degree not Conferred” status and the student will not be eligible to have their degree conferred, as a financial and/or document hold will be placed on the file and the student will not be eligible to receive a diploma, transcript, certification, verification, etc. until all requirements are fulfilled. Students who continue to have outstanding financial obligations will be turned over to collections per policy.

Graduate Information

Once moved to Graduate Status, or once Certificate Completion has been confirmed, students will receive the following:

  • Communication from ACE in regards to name printing on diploma/certificate and shipping information.
  • Diplomas/Certificates are mailed to eligible candidates 10-12 weeks after conferral clearance.
  • Commencement Invitation (Graduates only).

Consensual Relationships

American College of Education does not permit consensual relationships between faculty members or staff members in positions of authority and students. Faculty members and staff members must be aware that romantic or sexual relationships with students may lead to abuse of power, conflict of interest, exploitation, or favoritism and pose a legal risk to both the faculty member and the College.

The faculty member or staff member is expected to take specific action to remove herself or himself from all circumstances, decisions and actions in which he/she bears primary authority and accountability. Failure to abide by this policy constitutes misconduct on behalf of the faculty member who then may be subject to disciplinary sanctions by the College.

Grade Record Change

In rare situations, computational or technical errors may occur with posting grades. When this occurs, a faculty member or department chair can initiate an official grade change after official grades are posted. Grades may also be changed from an “I” to an earned grade.

Graduate Assistantships

American College of Education defines a graduate assistantship as a temporary student employment opportunity for graduate students. Graduate assistants receive tuition reimbursement whilst gaining experience and increasing their future employment options.

Upon successful completion of a graduate assistantship students will have gained:

  • professional experience;
  • fulfillment of their learning objectives set forth at the beginning of the assistantship program;
  • potential to enrich their college experience and assist in their professional development prior to graduation.

The graduate assistantship program is for any school of study or programs offered by the College and is not inclusive of student teaching, internships, externships, practicums, or clinical experiences required as part of program completion requirements and/or required for receipt of professional licensure or certification.

Students may be nominated or may apply directly, as applicable, for a graduate assistantship program.  Any faculty, student, or individual associated with the College or specific program may nominate a student by submitting a nomination form.  If the program is not limited to nominations only, any student may apply directly using a specified application.

Information Technology

The following is a non-exhaustive list of misuse and abuse of the information technology system to assist in identifying unacceptable behaviors:

  • Use of College communications services or equipment in a manner which violates copyrights, patent protection, license agreement or intellectual property laws.
  • Attempts to gain unauthorized access to any information facility, whether successful or not.
  • Any action that disrupts the availability of a system for other users, such as running programs that limit system resources.
  • Encryption of files and other electronic records in such a way that no other representative of the College can read its contents.
  • Use of Internet or electronic mail files which may cause an overload to the College’s network without making prior arrangements with Information Services.
  • Use of assigned American College of Education electronic mail or Internet access for personal or promotional, or in any way that does not support academic goals of the College.
  • Sharing College-assigned user IDs or access codes.
  • Attempts to alter, damage, delete, destroy or otherwise abuse any communications service or equipment.
  • Use of a computer account that has not been authorized.
  • Use of the College network system to gain unauthorized access to any computer system.
  • Posting electronic bulletin board material that violates existing federal or state laws, the College’s Standards of Student Behavior policy.
  • Attempting to monitor or tamper with another user’s communications system, or reading, copying, changing, or deleting another user’s files or software without the explicit agreement of the owner.
  • Any use of the College’s communication services or equipment that does not support the mission or business strategy of the College.
  • Use of the College’s communication services or equipment to view, bookmark, or download sexually explicit materials.
  • Configuration of unauthorized proxy servers on any College asset.

Program Completion Requirements

Completing your program of study should be an exciting time for you. It’s also an exciting time for us - as seeing our students complete their goals is our goal! The processes and policies in this section apply to the completion of your program.

Graduation/Degree Requirements

Students must be in “good standing” within their degree program to graduate. Good standing is defined as achieving the required College academic standards and program requirements as outlined in the catalog. The following requirements must be met before a student can graduate from American College of Education:

  • Satisfactory completion of all coursework.
  • Satisfactory completion of the Capstone Experience.
  • Satisfactory completion of the Dissertation Oral Defense.
  • Satisfactory completion of internship or student teaching, when applicable.
  • Minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 GPA with no D’s or F’s.

Certificate Completion Requirements

Certificates, in general, are granted to students who have satisfactorily completed a course of study as outlined in the catalog, maintaining a minimum of 2.50 GPA. Transcript documentation is available along with a printable certificate.  The Transition-to-Teaching certificate requires the satisfactory completion of all coursework and student teaching experience with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 with no D’s or F’s. Transcript document is available. The College will also complete appropriate documentation for states, as needed.

Tuition Refund Policy

General Refund Policy

The following tuition refund policy applies to all students except those that reside in the states specified in the College Catalog. If you are a student residing in one of these states, please refer to the state-specific refund schedule listed in the ACE Catalog.

Students are monitored during the first week of each course for signs of activity such as downloading readings, posting to discussion boards, submitting assignments, and completing quizzes and tests. Students who do not demonstrate activity in their courses during the first week are administratively withdrawn and the effective day will be the 5th day of the course. Students who are administratively withdrawn from the course for non-participation will receive a 100% tuition refund. This refund does not include the non-refundable fees. Refunds will be issued within 30 calendar days.

Participation in courses is the responsibility of the student. If a student remains enrolled in a course after the Drop Date (Friday of the first week of the course)they are financially and academically responsible for their enrollment in courses.

Withdrawal from Program or Single Course
A student must submit a Cancel/Withdrawal Form or Course Drop Request Form  (located in the MyACE Portal) in order to withdraw from the program or drop a single course. The form must be received by the Drop Date - the first Friday of the course - in order to receive a full refund of tuition paid. If the student has paid for the entire program upfront, the program cost less this liability will be refunded to the student.