Nov 28, 2021  
ACE Catalog - Volume 33 
  
ACE Catalog - Volume 33

General



The College Catalog documents the approach to interactions between the College and students, administration, staff, and faculty. It provides guidance on how policies and processes function within the framework of an academic environment and supports students and faculty in understanding the protocols established by governance and regulatory agencies. Given this established purpose, additional guidance may be required for specific situations and events. General information and definitions are provided below.

Appeals

When decisions are made and a dispute arises, students have the opportunity of seeking an appeal. For additional information on specific steps, review the information in the Student Handbook .

Admissions Appeal

Potential students have the right to appeal a decision in regards to their admission to the College. An applicant appealing a decision should submit a written request with a full description of the rationale and supporting evidence as to why an admissions appeal should be granted. Complete the Admissions Appeal form provided by contacting Enrollment or Admissions.

General Appeal

When a student wishes to challenge a policy, procedure, or decision, they can do so through submitting a general appeal.  In the general appeal, the student should outline why they believe the policy, procedure, or decision should be reconsidered given their circumstances. The student should provide documentation if requesting an exception to a policy due to extenuating circumstances.  The general appeal will be received by the College and forwarded to the appropriate department for review and to render a decision. These steps are addressed in the General Appeals Process in the Student Handbook .

Grade Appeal

Students at ACE have the right to appeal a final course grade which they allege to be the result of arbitrary or capricious grading. To do so, the student utilizes the appeal form available in the MyACE Portal. Students should follow the prescribed steps outlined in the Grade Appeal Process in the Student Handbook .

Non-Retaliation Statement

No individual will be retaliated against for making a complaint about harassment or discrimination, or for participating in the investigation of such a complaint, or for submission of an appeal of any kind to the College. We consider retaliation to be serious and a violation of College policies. We will investigate and resolve complaints of retaliation in accordance with standard investigative practices.

Complaint

American College of Education provides fair, consistent, and equitable procedures for addressing student complaints. This policy outlines ACE’s processes for handling student complaints made to the College and handled within the College. This policy does not limit the Student’s availability to other means outside of the College for resolving complaints or concerns.

This Policy addresses formal procedures for resolving problems related to violations of legally prohibited actions, College policies, academic status, records, and disciplinary actions, including, but not limited to, the following: 

  • Criteria and procedures for the decision were not published.
  • Inconsistent published criteria and procedures.
  • Published criteria and procedures were not followed.
  • The decision was substantially influenced by factors other than the published criteria; i.e., the decision was discriminatory on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, or handicap in admissions, employment, or the provision of services.
  • Ethical behavior standards were violated.
  • An illegal act was committed.

Students are expected and advised to first pursue resolution to problems informally by discussing the concern with a faculty or staff member within the department. If resolution is not accomplished, the student may elect to elevate the issue/s into the formal procedure. These steps are addressed in the Complaint Process in the Student Handbook .

Deceased Student

In the very unfortunate instance that a student should pass away, the College will work with the deceased’s family members to close their academic record and assist the student’s family members with any additional requests (i.e. academic/financial records, posthumous diploma, etc.).   

The family member should contact the registrar for notification and requests. The requests should include the following: student’s name while enrolled, student’s ID (if known) or last four digits of the student’s social security number, student’s date of birth, student’s dates of enrollment, and death certificate (copy is preferred). 

The requester must also provide the following personal information with the written request: their name, their mailing and e-mail address, phone number, documentation of relationship with the deceased (i.e. birth certificate, marriage certificate, etc.), reason for request, signature, and date of request.

Once received, the registrar will coordinate with other departments at the college to fulfill requests and/or communicate with the requester about additional items.

Exception Policy

The College permits a student to request an exception to policies and procedures due to extenuating circumstances by completing an appeal form stating the reason the requested exception should be made. The student should provide any appropriate documentation to support the request. The College, pending on the request and rationale, can grant an exception to policy or procedure. If a student is unsatisfied with the decision, they can escalate the request/appeal through the appeal escalation path. 

Gift Acceptance

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

Inclement Weather

American College of Education will make reasonable accommodations for students who are not able to access their courses due to extreme weather conditions that prevent internet access in their respective cities, states, or regions.  ACE considers any weather situation that would cause an individual to evacuate from their home or lose internet access for more than 24 hours as inclement.

Examples include hurricanes, typhoons, tropical storms, blizzards, tornadoes, etc.  When a student is impacted by such a situation, ACE faculty members will work with the student, without prior notification, by accepting late assignments.

  • College faculty will accommodate students through late submissions because of the known event.
  • Students are responsible, once they have access to communication channels again, for communicating the situation with their faculty members. Students will provide some sort of reasonable documentation (this can be as simple as an address to verify it is in the impacted area).
  • If the situation cannot be appropriately and reasonably handled through late submissions alone, ACE administration will work on a plan to assist students to include the use of the Incomplete Policy.

Natural Disaster and Emergency

American College of Education is an online institution that serves students from across the world. As a result, it is likely that ACE students may be impacted by natural disasters or emergencies that do not result in closure of the College. In these instances, students may be unable to complete assignments or even access the learning management system (LMS). In instances of natural disasters (e.g. hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires) where students lose access to the learning environment, students will be provided extra time for assignments, without penalty. The same applies to emergencies (e.g. disease outbreaks, pandemics, epidemics) where students cannot complete assignments or access the learning management system.  

In instances where students are impacted by natural disasters or emergencies, the students will be afforded a 48-hour extension on due dates. Specifically, students will have 48 hours from the time their normal access or ability is restored to complete coursework and assignments without penalty (e.g. discussion boards, assessments, papers) that were due during the time period impacted by the natural disaster or emergency. 

In the case of more extenuating circumstances (prolonged period of time without internet access caused by a natural disaster; severity of the disaster and its impact, etc.) or College deadlines coinciding with a natural disaster or emergency (such as a College end of term, etc.), the 48-hour extension for the completion of coursework and assignments without penalty will be modified and extended to accommodate the circumstances. In these instances, the College will provide additional guidance to faculty and students. Furthermore, if the extenuating circumstance extends beyond the term, the student and College may utilize the Incomplete Policy and/or Leave of Absence Policy to best support students during these challenging times.  

Standards of Student Behavior

A College is a marketplace of ideas, and in the course of the search for truth, it is essential that freedom exists for contrary ideas to be expressed. American College of Education students are expected to conduct themselves as responsible members of the College’s academic community. This requires the demonstration of mutual respect and civility in academic and professional discourse. As such, it is mandatory students interact with other students and all College faculty, administrators, and staff with respect and in a professional manner.

Conduct that is determined to impair the opportunities of others to learn or that disrupts the orderly functions of the College will be deemed misconduct and will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action.

Misconduct for which students are subject to disciplinary action includes, but is not limited to:

  • Actions, verbal statements, written statements and/or online statements which may be construed as cyber stalking/bullying and/or written statements which may be used to intimidate, threaten or violate the personal safety of any member of the faculty, staff, or other students, or any conduct which interferes with the educational process or institutional functions.
  • Harassment - sexual, racial, ethnic or otherwise - that has the effect of creating a hostile or offensive educational environment for any student, faculty, or staff member.
  • Disruptive behavior, such as but not limited to harassment, verbal insults, ethnic and/or racial slurs, that hinders or interferes with the educational process.
  • Violation of any applicable professional codes of ethics or conduct and College and program dispositions, where applicable.
  • Failure to comply promptly with any reasonable directive from faculty or College officials.
  • Failure to cooperate in a College investigation.
  • Carrying of weapons on campus, at campus sanctioned events, or when meeting with campus personnel.
  • Using or being under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs while in class, at College-sanctioned events, or when meeting with College personnel.
  • Cheating - using or attempting to conspire to use unauthorized materials, information, copying another student’s work, or unauthorized study aids in any academic exercise.
  • Fabrication - falsification or invention of any information, citation, data, or document, or lying during a College investigation.
  • Hazing (any action which recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental health or physical health or safety of a student for the purpose of initiation or admission into or affiliation with any College sanctioned organization).
  • Violation of the academic integrity policy, information technology policy, College regulations and policies, and any violation of federal, state, or local laws or regulations that impacts the College’s educational environment.

No individual will be retaliated against for making a complaint about harassment or discrimination, or for participating in the investigation of such a complaint, or for submission of an appeal of any kind to the College. We consider retaliation to be serious and a violation of College policies. We will investigate and resolve complaints of retaliation in accordance with standard investigative practices.

Violations of this policy will be reviewed by ACE administration and escalated accordingly. Students will receive communication about the process. Students have the right to appeal this policy and potential sanctions via the appeal process.

Disciplinary Action for Student Conduct Behavior
While an alleged violation of the Standards of Student Behavior is being investigated, a student may be removed from class, College-sanctioned events, or other College functions. If a violation is found, disciplinary action will be based on the seriousness of the situation and may include, but not be limited to, documented counseling by a College staff member, loss of credit, suspension and/or dismissal. In all cases, College officials will take action in accordance with College policies and procedures. 

A student has the right to appeal this decision.