Academic Policies and Procedures

UNDERGRADUATE INFORMATION

GRADUATE INFORMATION


Undergraduate Information

The following pages contain academic regulations and other information of interest to all students pursuing an undergraduate degree at Binghamton. In addition to the all-University regulations discussed here, regulations specifically pertaining to the various schools at the University appear in the school sections later in this Bulletin. All students are expected to be familiar with the regulations in this section and in the section for the school in which they are enrolled, and are responsible for their observance. For interpretations of these regulations or for answers to questions about specific points of academic policy, students should consult the academic advising office of the college or school in which they are enrolled.

Students whose circumstances or aspirations are not covered by standard academic policies, or who wish to request exceptions to standard policies, may seek a waiver by filing a petition in the academic advising office of the college or school in which they are enrolled. If the initial petition is not resolved to their satisfaction, they may appeal according to guidelines available in each dean’s office. To aid students with their appeals, the Student Association provides an ombudsperson.

The State University of New York Board of Trustees, in December 1998, adopted Resolution 98-241 establishing a General Education Requirement for all baccalaureate degree candidates at the University’s state-operated campuses. As a condition of graduation, students are required to complete a General Education program of no fewer than 30 credit hours specifically designed to achieve learning outcomes in 10 knowledge and skill areas: Mathematics; Natural Sciences; Social Sciences; American History; Western Civilization; Other World Civilizations; Humanities; The Arts; Foreign Language; and Basic Communication, and two competencies: Critical Thinking (Reasoning) and Information Management.

Binghamton University has had its own General Education program for all undergraduate students since 1996. In responding to the mandate for a statewide requirement, revisions have been made to this General Education program. Courses will be available for freshmen who matriculate in the fall semester of 2000 or later so that they may complete the General Education Requirement by the time of their expected graduation date.

 

Undergraduate General Education Program

Note: This program is in effect for freshmen entering Binghamton University in summer or fall of 2000 and thereafter. The General Education Requirement in effect for transfer students, that is, students who have matriculated at another institution prior to the summer of 2000, appears below, under "Undergraduate General Education Program for Transfer Students."

Convinced that there are several areas of knowledge and experience that ought to be central to the academic experience of every undergraduate student, Binghamton University has adopted a comprehensive General Education curriculum. This curriculum has broad goals. It is intended to help students develop:

• an appreciation of and capacity for effective personal expression;

• knowledge about various intellectual traditions;

• an understanding of and respect for different peoples and civilizations;

• knowledge of and appreciation for the natural world, achieved through active engagement with the methods and philosophy of natural science;

• logical thinking, balanced skepticism, and tolerance for ambiguity and uncertainty;

• a knowledge of and appreciation for the arts and creative expression.

To achieve these objectives, the faculty of Binghamton University requires students to take courses in the following broad areas of learning:

Category 1: Language and Communication

Composition (C) courses are courses in any of the departments or divisions of the University. They emphasize writing as a process of revision and require a minimum of 20 pages of expository prose. Students will perform the basic operations of personal computer use; understand and use basic research techniques; and locate, evaluate and synthesize information from a variety of sources. The writing in these courses may be in a language other than English. At least 50 percent of the course grade is based on student writing.

Oral Communication (O) courses involve oral presentations and evaluation of speaking that count for at least 25 percent of the final course grade (in a four-credit course; proportionately more in courses of fewer than four credits).

Note: Composition and Oral Communication components may be combined to create Joint (J) courses.

Foreign Language skills are ensured by requiring that students complete either a third-semester college-level course in one foreign language or a second-semester-level course in each of two foreign languages. This requirement may also be fulfilled in high school by demonstrating a level of proficiency equivalent to passing the corresponding Regents foreign language exam with a score of 85 or higher. Normally this exam is taken after three years of high school language study.

Category 2: Creating a Global Vision

The complexity of the modern world demands that students attain a heightened awareness both of the plurality of cultures that have contributed to the making of the United States and of the interdependence of the cultures of the world.

Pluralism in the United States (P) courses consider three or more cultural groups in the United States in terms of their specific experiences and how they have affected and been affected by the basic institutions of American society. Each course takes substantial account of at least three of the following: African Americans, American Indians, Asian Americans, European Americans and Latino Americans.

Most P courses assume a basic knowledge of United States history, as measured by demonstrating a level of proficiency equivalent to a score of 85 or above on the Regents exam on United States History and Government. Students who have not demonstrated this knowledge must meet the P requirement by choosing from among a designated group of P courses that pay significant attention to a broad span of United States history.

Global Interdependencies (G) courses consider how one or more of the regions of the world have influenced and interacted with the West and with one another, and how the West has affected and been affected by these regions and their distinctive cultures or civilizations.

Category 3: Natural Sciences, Social Sciences and Mathematics

Students must have an understanding of the methods of investigation typical of the natural and social sciences and must be able to make individual observations and quantitative measurements in a hands-on environment in the natural sciences. In order to have the experience of discovery through the use of logic and reasoning, students also need to study mathematical methods and reasoning.

Laboratory Science (L) courses emphasize the formulation and testing of hypotheses and the collection, analysis and interpretation of data. Each course includes a minimum of 10 laboratory meetings, exercises, field studies or practica.

Social Science (N) courses emphasize the major concepts, models and issues of at least one of the social sciences.

On 12/6/05, Binghamton University's Faculty Senate approved the following change to the General Education "Mathematics/Reasoning" (M) requirement.  This change was made retroactive to so that it applies to all students subject to the General Education requirements in the 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005 Catalogs who have not yet satisfied the "M" requirement.

"Mathematics/Reasoning (M) courses include any course in the Mathematics Department numbered 130 or above, any of several designated statistics courses, or any of several designated logic courses. An Advanced Placement score of 3 or better in Calculus or Statistics may be used to satisfy this requirement."

Mathematics/Reasoning (M) courses include any course in the Mathematics Department numbered 130 or above, any of several designated statistics courses, PHIL 121 or 122, or any course in the Computer Science Department numbered 120 or above (except CS 205). Advanced Placement credit may be used to satisfy this requirement.

M courses assume a basic knowledge of high school mathematics as measured by demonstrating a level of proficiency equivalent to passing Mathematics Course III (algebra, geometry, trigonometry) with a score of 85 or above on the corresponding Regents exam. Students who have not demonstrated such proficiency either by test scores or by passing calculus must pass MATH 107 or 108 in addition to one of the above-listed courses.


Category 4: Aesthetics and Humanities

By taking courses in this area, students gain an expanded sense and understanding of culture and a greater appreciation of human experience and its expressions.

Aesthetics (A) courses enhance students’ understanding of the creative process and the role of imagination in it. Students study or practice artistic expression and production in such fields as art, art history, cinema, creative writing, dance, graphic design, music and theater.

Humanities (H) courses enhance students’ understanding of human experience through the study of literature or philosophy.

Category 5: Physical Activity/Wellness

Exercise, body awareness and wellness are essential components of a healthy and productive lifestyle. The dictum we follow is "a sound mind in a sound body."

Physical Activity (Y) courses devote at least 50 percent of their time to the performance of physical exercise designed to develop one or more of the following attributes: neuromuscular skill, muscular strength and endurance, cardiovascular endurance, flexibility.

Wellness (S) courses deal with such topics as diet and nutrition, physical development, substance abuse, human sexuality, relaxation or physical, mental and emotional fitness. Their focus is on developing a healthy lifestyle rather than on simply providing information about the human body.

The Physical Activity/Wellness requirement may be fulfilled in any of the following ways:

1. Completion of a one-credit (or more) Physical Activity course and a one-credit (or more) Wellness course.

2. Completion of a one-credit Physical Activity/Wellness course and one of the following:

• one-credit Physical Activity course;

• one-credit Wellness course;

• one-credit Physical Activity/Wellness course.

3. Completion of a two-credit (or more) course that combines a physical activity and wellness.

Note: Physical Activity and Wellness components may be combined to create Physical Activity/Wellness (B) courses.

RESTRICTIONS AND EXCEPTIONS

1. Students may use appropriate transfer credits to satisfy particular course requirements. The determination of those transfer credits which satisfy General Education requirements will be the responsibility of the evaluator of transfer credit in each of the undergraduate schools.

2. General Education courses may also be counted as satisfying college and major requirements.

3. Certain courses are designated as meeting the criteria for more than one of the General Education categories. When a course is so designated, students may use it to satisfy only one of the General Education course requirements. There is an exception to this rule: Composition (C), Oral Communication (O) and Joint (J) courses may satisfy either one or both of these requirements and also satisfy one other General Education requirement.

4. General Education courses may not be taken Pass/Fail unless that is the mandatory grade option in the course.

5. Since the General Education program is intended to foster a shared educational experience, Advanced Placement credit may not be used to satisfy General Education requirements. The one exception is the Mathematics/Reasoning (M) requirement: Advanced Placement credit may be used to fulfill this requirement.

6. For all General Education requirements a "course" is understood to be four credits. There are exceptions to this rule:

• Transfer courses that earned three credits at the student’s original school.

• Physical Activity/Wellness courses. (The specific credit-hour criteria for these courses are defined above.)

• Laboratory science courses of one and two credits that have a four-credit pre- or co-requisite.

• Oral communication courses of varying credits, as long as the oral component counts for at least one credit’s worth of the final course grade.

• Schools or programs in which three-credit courses are the norm.


SUMMARY OF GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS 

Courses that satisfy General Education requirements are so designated in the Schedule of Classes each semester. The code letter attached to a course in the Schedule of Classes means that the course fulfills the particular General Education requirement as indicated below. (See Restrictions and Exceptions above for explanation of variability in credits.)
1a. Composition (C) 4 credits
1b. Oral Communication (O) 1-4 credits
1c. Foreign Language 0-16credits
2.   Pluralism in the U.S.course (P) 4 credits
2b. Global Interdependencies (G) 4 credits
3a. Laboratory Science (L) 4-6 credits
3b. Social Science (N) 4-8 credits
3c. Mathematics/reasoning course (M) 4 credits
4a. Aesthetics (A) 4 credits
4b. Humanities (H) 4 credits
7. Physical activity/wellness half-course (Y, S, B)** 2 credits
TOTAL 35-60 credits
** (Y=activity; S=wellness; B=both)

Undergraduate General Education Program for Transfer Students

Category 1: Language and Communication 

Both in the professions and the workplace in general, the exchange of ideas is predicated upon proficiency in communication, particularly written communication.

Composition (C) courses are courses in any of the departments or divisions at the University that emphasize writing as a process of revision and require a minimum of 20 pages of writing. They include courses in which the writing is done in a language other than English. At least 50 percent of the course grade is based on student writing.

Category 2: Creating a Global Vision

The complexity of the modern world demands that students attain a heightened awareness both of the plurality of cultures that have contributed to the making of the United States and of the interdependence of the cultures of the world.

A) Pluralism in the United States courses consider three or more cultural groups in the United States in terms of their specific experiences as well as their relationships with one another. Each course takes substantial account of at least three of the following: African Americans, American Indians, Asian Americans, European Americans and Latino Americans.

B) Global Interdependencies courses consider how one or more of the regions of the world have influenced and interacted with the West and with one another, and how the West has affected and been affected by these regions and their distinctive cultures or civilizations.


Category 3: Science and Mathematics 

Students need to have an understanding of the methods of investigation typical of the natural sciences and must be able to make individual observations and quantitative measurements in a hands-on environment. In order to have the experience of discovery through the use of logic and reasoning, students also need to study mathematical methods and reasoning.

A) Laboratory Science courses emphasize the formulation and testing of hypotheses and the collection, analysis and interpretation of data. Each course includes a minimum of 10 laboratory meetings, exercises, field studies or practica.

B) Mathematics/Reasoning courses include any course in the Mathematics Department numbered 130 or above, any of several designated statistics courses, PHIL 121 or 122, or any course in the Computer Science Department numbered 120 or above (except CS 205). Advanced Placement credit may be used to satisfy this requirement.

Category 4: Aesthetic Perspectives

By taking courses in this area, students gain an expanded sense and understanding of culture and a greater appreciation of human experience and its expressions.

Aesthetics courses enhance students’ understanding of the creative process and the role of imagination in it. Students study or practice artistic expression and production in such fields as art, art history, cinema, creative writing, dance, graphic design, music and theater.

Humanities courses enhance students’ understanding of human experience through the study of literature or philosophy.


Category 5: Physical Activity/Wellness 

Exercise, body awareness and wellness are essential components of a healthy and productive lifestyle. The dictum we follow is "a sound mind in a sound body."

A) Physical Activity courses devote at least 50 percent of their time to the performance of physical exercise designed to develop one or more of the following attributes: neuromuscular skill, muscular strength and endurance, cardiovascular endurance and flexibility.

B) Wellness courses deal with such topics as diet and nutrition, physical development, substance abuse, human sexuality, relaxation or physical, mental and emotional fitness. Their focus is on developing a healthy lifestyle rather than on simply providing information about the human body.

The requirement may be fulfilled in any of the following ways:

1. Completion of a one-credit (or more) Physical Activity course and a one-credit (or more) Wellness course.

2. Completion of a one-credit Physical Activity/Wellness course and one of the following:

• one-credit Activity course;

• one-credit Wellness course;

• one-credit Activity/Wellness course.

3. Completion of a two-credit (or more) course that combines activity and Wellness.

Note: Physical Activity and Wellness components may be combined to create Physical Activity/Wellness courses.

Restrictions and Exceptions

• The General Education Requirement is waived for all transfer students with an associate’s degree or with junior standing (defined as 57 completed credit hours). Transfer students with fewer than 57 hours of credit will have to meet the overall General Education requirement but may use appropriate transfer credits to satisfy particular course requirements. The determination of which transfer credits satisfy General Education requirements will be the responsibility of the evaluator of transfer credit in each of the undergraduate schools.

• General Education courses may also be counted as satisfying college and major requirements.

• Certain courses are designated as meeting the criteria for more than one of the General Education categories. When a course is so designated, students may use it to satisfy only one of the General Education course requirements. There is a single exception to this rule: Composition courses may also satisfy one other General Education requirement.

• General Education courses may not be taken Pass/Fail, unless that is the mandatory grade option in the course.

• Since the General Education program is intended to foster a shared educational experience in the student’s first two years at Binghamton, Advanced Placement credit may not be used to satisfy General Education requirements. The one exception is the Mathematics/Reasoning requirement: Advanced Placement credit may be used to fulfill this requirement.

• For all General Education requirements a "course" is understood to be four credits. There are exceptions to this rule:

1. Transfer courses that earned three credits at the student’s original school.

2. Physical Activity/Wellness courses. The specific credit hour criteria for these courses are defined above.

3. Two-credit laboratory science courses and one credit laboratory courses which have a four credit pre- or co-requisite.

Summary of General Education Requirements for Transfer Students (Erratum)

(Courses that satisfy General Education requirements will be so designated in the Schedule of Classes each semester.)

1.  Composition (C) 4 credits
2.  Pluralism in the U.S. course (P) 4 credits
3. Global Interdependencies course(G) 4 credits
4. Science Laboratory (L) 1-4 credits
5. Mathematics/Reasoning course (M) 4 credits
4. Aesthetic Perspective course (A)4 credits
4b. Humanities (H)4 credits
4. Aesthetic Perspective course (A or H)

4 credits

7. Physical activity/wellness half-course (Y, S, B)** 2 credits
TOTAL 23.26 credits

* The code letter attached to a course in the Schedule of Classes means that this course fulfills the particular General Education requirement listed.

** (Y=Physical Activity; S=Wellness; B=both)

Determination of Graduation Requirements

Graduation requirements for the undergraduate schools on the Binghamton campus are listed in the individual school sections of this Bulletin. In general, matriculated students follow the requirements for graduation listed in the Bulletin current at the time they are admitted. However, students who interrupt enrollment for three or more consecutive semesters (not counting summer sessions) are governed by the Bulletin in effect when they are readmitted. Exceptions are made for students eligible to continue at Binghamton who are forced to leave because of involuntary recall to military service.

With the departmental adviser’s consent and approval from their college or school’s academic advising office, students may elect a later Bulletin under which to fulfill the degree requirements; they may not elect an earlier Bulletin, nor use a combination of requirements from different Bulletins.

No Bulletin more than 10 years old may be used under any circumstances. Should a student maintain continuous enrollment under a Bulletin older than 10 years, the Bulletin under which degree requirements are to be completed is determined by the advising office of the college or school in which they are enrolled, in consultation with the student’s departmental adviser.

Previously non-matriculated students who then matriculate are governed by the requirements of the Bulletin in effect at the time of their matriculation.

When courses required in older Bulletins are no longer offered, or in other special cases, course substitutions may be made with the approval of appropriate department chairs, departmental advisers or deans.

Changes in regulations concerning grading systems, withdrawals, academic actions, attendance at other institutions, etc., may be made by appropriate University governing bodies; they become effective on the date specified in the legislation. The University reserves the right at any time to make changes deemed necessary in the regulations, fees, courses or programs described in this Bulletin, and to cancel any course if registration does not justify its continuance or if qualified faculty members become unavailable.

Residence Requirements

To receive a degree, students in Harpur College of Arts and Sciences, the Decker School of Nursing or the School of Management must take at least seven and one-half courses (30 credits) while in residence at their school. These seven and one-half courses must be the last seven and one-half courses toward the degree, unless students petition the appropriate academic advising office and obtain in advance an exception to this rule. Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science students must also take at least 30 credits in residence, of which half (15 credits) are Watson School courses; exceptions to this policy may be made only by petition to the school’s Academic Standards Committee. Students in the School of Education and Human Development must take at least 32 credits while in residence at the school. These credits do not have to be the last 32 credits toward the degree.

Classification of Students

A student must pass a minimum of 24 credits to be classified a sophomore; 57 credits to be classified a junior; and 88 credits to be classified a senior. For this purpose, Incompletes are counted as credits passed.

Program Load

The term "full-time student" is applied to a person carrying 12 or more credits, excluding audited courses. Full-time students attending Harpur College, Decker School of Nursing, School of Education and Human Development or School of Management normally enroll in four courses each semester. Watson School students are considered full time if they register for 12 or more credits each semester. All courses, except where indicated in this Bulletin, carry four credits. Those carrying four credits also carry the assignment of a minimum of one or two hours per week of independent or tutorial work under the guidance of the faculty, outside of regularly scheduled classes. Outside reading and study are required to complete classroom assignments. Students are also expected to meet several times each semester with the instructor to obtain supervision and periodic evaluation of work done outside of regularly scheduled classes.

There is no rigid pattern of class meetings. In such courses as beginning languages and sciences, a course may have classes and laboratory sessions five or six hours a week. Other courses may meet three or four hours a week. As noted above, however, time spent in the classroom is only a part of the student’s workload. In general a "course" represents the pursuit of a skill or a body of knowledge that engages approximately 25 percent of the formal academic effort of a full-time student during the semester.

Undergraduate students are allowed to register for no more than 18 credit hours (not including physical education courses), unless they have filed an academic petition form for an overload. Petitions to register for an overload are considered on an individual basis when submitted to the appropriate academic advising office.

Attendance

Students are expected to attend all scheduled classes and laboratories. An instructor may deny a student the privilege of taking the final examination or of receiving credit for the course, or may prescribe other academic penalties, if the student misses more than 25 percent of the total class sessions. Excessive tardiness may count as absence. In cases of excessive absence, the instructor may request the appropriate academic advising office to investigate.

Transfer of Summer and Visiting Student Credits

Once students are matriculated at Binghamton University, they may obtain credit toward graduation for courses taken at other institutions. Harpur College students wishing to have these courses count toward their major and all students in the Decker School, the School of Education
and Human Development, the School of Management or the Watson School should submit a "Petition to Take Courses at Another Institution," approved by their appropriate school or department, to the academic advising office of the college or school in which they are enrolled before taking the course(s).

Adjustments are made in the transferred credits when the credit system at the other institution is different; e.g., credits taken under a quarter system, rather than a semester system, are transferred to Binghamton at two-thirds of their quarter-credit value. In general, credits may be transferred only if they were earned for courses that are essentially theoretical rather than practical in nature (e.g., not practice teaching or typing courses), and if the student received a grade of C– or better, or the equivalent (C or better for students in the School of Management).

These guidelines apply to courses taken at other institutions during the summer, correspondence courses, study-abroad courses sponsored by other units of the State University of New York, and courses taken through the Visiting Student Program (which involves a semester or a year of study at one of many participating public and private schools in New York state).

Students participating in study-abroad programs sponsored by American universities not a part of the State University of New York system, as well as students studying for a time at a foreign university, should first petition to transfer the credits they plan to earn. Upon completion of the program, a transcript or official grade statement should be sent to the appropriate academic advising office.

Progress Toward Degree (DARS)

All undergraduate students at the University receive a Progress Toward Degree report from the Degree Audit Reporting System. This report is mailed each semester to students prior to advance registration (course request period) by the Office of the University Registrar. The report shows the students what program requirements have been completed and what requirements are remaining for their degrees. If students have questions regarding the Progress Toward Degree report, they should consult with a professional adviser in their college or school or with their major departmental adviser.

Also, students may obtain a Progress Toward Degree report for a fee of $2 by going to the Registrar’s Office (Student Wing 119) and ordering one for next-day pickup.

Double Degree Program

A student may earn two degrees in very different fields by completing a significant amount of work (typically 30 credits) beyond that required for one degree and satisfying requirements for both programs. Harpur College offers combined programs of study with Decker School of Nursing, School of Education and Human Development, School of Management and certain programs in the Watson School. To learn more about requirements and application procedures, contact the academic advising office of the college or school in which you are enrolled.

Course Offerings

A student may earn two degrees in very different fields by completing a significant amount of work (typically 30 credits) beyond that required for one degree and satisfying requirements for both programs. Harpur College offers combined programs of study with Decker School of Nursing, School of Education and Human Development, School of Management and certain programs in the Watson School. To learn more about requirements and application procedures, contact the academic advising office of the college or school in which you are enrolled.

Course Numbering and Prerequisites

All Binghamton University undergraduate schools use a course-numbering system from 100 through 499. While each school may define the tiers more specifically, all schools define 100-299 as lower division and 300-499 as upper division.

Harpur College numbering system: 
100-199 Introductory courses, normally with no prerequisites, open to all students.
200-299 Intermediate courses, with or without prerequisites.
300-399 Intermediate courses, normally with prerequisites.
400-499 Advanced courses with specific course prerequisites.
Professional schools' numbering system:
100-199 Lower-division introductory courses, no prerequisites, open to all students.
200-299 Lower-division intermediate courses, with or without prerequisites.
300-399 Upper-division intermediate courses, intended primarily for juniors and seniors, with prerequisites (courses, class standing, or special permission).
400-499 Upper-division advanced courses, intended for seniors, with specific course prerequisites.

Within these levels, certain numbers are set aside to indicate particular learning experiences: -91 indicates a teaching practicum course; -95, an internship; -97, an independent study; -98 and -99, honors or thesis work.

Program planning must include the early identification of and registration for prerequisites to courses that the student intends to take at a later time. All prerequisites are included in the course descriptions that appear elsewhere in this Bulletin. When there are special reasons, students may register for a course without having completed the prerequisites, provided they first obtain the consent of the course instructor.

Registration and Changes in Program

There are three formal registration periods for each major semester (fall and spring). The course request period (advance registration) occurs during the mid-portion of the semester prior to classes starting; the last two weeks of a semester are on-line, end-of-semester registration for an upcoming semester; and there is a brief on-line registration period prior to the start of classes for students who may have missed one of the two earlier periods. Only eligible students may participate. All student registration activity is done by students using the Binghamton University Student Information (BUSI) system from the Information Centers located around campus and in the residence halls. Also, students may access the system on the World Wide Web (www.binghamton.edu).

Students cannot be registered if they have an outstanding financial delinquency with the University. Students are not officially registered until all tuition and fees are paid or arrangements for such payments have been approved by the Student Accounts Office. Students who have not made financial arrangements with the Student Accounts Office by the first day of classes are subject to a late registration fee.

In addition to registration activities, Binghamton University also conducts an add/drop period during each semester. Students may add a course to their schedule during the first two weeks of classes prior to the announced add deadline. During the first nine weeks of classes, before the announced drop deadline, students may drop a course without having a grade recorded, or change grading options for individual courses. These policies apply to courses offered on a full-term basis. Add and drop deadlines for courses offered for a half-semester or less are adjusted accordingly.

All course adds or drops after the deadline dates require academic approval of the student’s academic advising office and an associated late fee. Such late requests should be made on the Late Add/Drop Petition Form obtained from the academic advising office. Students must cite extraordinary circumstances to justify a late drop, that is, circumstances beyond their control and beyond their ability to foresee. Poor judgment or academic incompetence does not qualify as an extraordinary circumstance.

Binghamton University Student Information (BUSI) System

All students at Binghamton University have access to an on-line information service through the Binghamton University Student Information (BUSI) system. There are approximately 60 computer terminals located at several Information Centers around campus and in the residence halls. Students may also use the Computer PODS and can dial into the system on a personal computer with a modem. Students may check their current schedule of classes to verify which courses they’re registered for, check their grades, check their final examination schedule, check to see whether they have any financial obligations to the University, register for classes and change grading options. Additional features will continue to be added to the BUSI system.

Credit by Examination

Credit for knowledge gained outside the classroom may be obtained through New York State Education Department (Regents College Examination Program, or RCEP) tests and through subject-based College Entrance Examination Board (College-Level Examination Program, or CLEP) exams. Credit earned through Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, U.S. Armed Forces Institute/Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Services (USAF/DANTES), examination credit from other institutions, and through correspondence may also apply to degree credit. Up to 32 external examination credits may be accepted; however, each undergraduate school within the University determines the number and kind of credit that counts toward its degree.

Acceptance of these examinations for major credit is governed by schools and/or departmental policy. (See the section titled "Advance Placement" for a discussion of these exams and of International Baccalaureate credit.)

Grading Systems

At the end of each semester, students are sent a grade report by the Registrar’s Office. For a discussion of the grading system used in each undergraduate college and school, see the college and school sections in this Bulletin. Under appropriate circumstances, students may take undergraduate courses in any of the schools at Binghamton University. Courses are usually graded according to the offering college or school’s grading system; e.g., a course offered by the School of Management is graded using that school’s system, and a Harpur College course is graded according to the Harpur system. However, if students petition the instructor for an exception, they may be graded according to the system in use at their home college or school. (Thus, a student majoring in Harpur College who takes a School of Management course must petition the instructor and the Harpur academic advising office in order to be graded according to the Harpur College system.) Petitions should be submitted by the deadline for change-of-grading option. Students should realize that not only do grading systems differ from school to school, but the various schools also have their own policies on taking courses in the other Binghamton University schools and on petitioning for grading options. These grading systems are described in this Bulletin in the introductory section of each school. Students wishing to register a complaint about alleged unfair grading procedures should speak with the instructor or the appropriate department chair.

Notation of Incomplete

A notation of Incomplete, rather than a grade, may be reported by the instructor when a student has not been able to complete a course for what, in the instructor’s judgment, is a compelling reason. The submission of an Incomplete means that a student has made a substantial commitment to the course, but some remainder of the work must still be accomplished before an evaluation can be made.

Students must determine with the instructor what work is necessary for completion of the course and when the work must be submitted.

Ordinarily all Incomplete notations must be replaced with grades by the end of the next semester, whether or not the student is in college. Incomplete notations change to an F grade at the end of the next semester unless an official extension has been filed with the Registrar’s Office. It is the student’s responsibility to initiate a request for an extension, having reached agreement with the instructor for an alternate completion date. The appropriate form, Request for Extension of Incomplete Grade in an Undergraduate Course, may be obtained from the academic advising office of the college or school in which the student is enrolled, or from the Registrar’s Office.

Rules Governing Academic Life

Academic Integrity

The faculty assumes that themes, term papers, studio work, results of laboratory experiments, examinations and computer-generated material submitted by the student represent the student’s own work. The presentation for academic credit of the same work in more than one course is prohibited, unless a joint project receives the express and prior consent of the instructors involved. The following remarks are intended to clarify this for all students:

Cooperation in preparing course material

Cooperative study of coursework is one of the legitimate ways to master a subject. Joint discussion of problems is, therefore, encouraged. Sometimes instructors encourage collaborative methods of learning, including peer review of papers. This too can be a productive way of mastering material and promoting one’s writing abilities. Students should be aware that wherever such learning results in an instructor’s evaluation, they are responsible for acknowledging their membership in the group fostering their learning.

Written Work

Much coursework is assigned to students individually rather than in groups. In carrying out such assignments, a student may ask others for criticism of a piece of writing. Effective learning is often fostered by cooperation and assistance. Nonetheless, such assistance should never be so complete or so detailed that the piece of writing becomes more the work of the person assisting than of the student. That would be a form of misrepresentation. Similarly, a student may occasionally feel the need for preliminary aid in understanding the principles involved in various problems and the methods to be used in solving them (for example, in mathematics and foreign language courses). Such aid is legitimate, but in every case the student must be responsible for the preparation and presentation of assignments. Without these precautions, the student may unwittingly become involved in collaborative work so extensive that it may be considered plagiarism.

Laboratory Experiments

Although students may be permitted or required to cooperate with one or more other students in a laboratory experiment, many experiments are to be done by the students independently, and all require some independent work. For students to submit the results of another’s experiment as their own, or to accept unauthorized help in an experiment, constitutes academic dishonesty.

Credit

All sources of assistance — published or unpublished — are to be scrupulously acknowledged in every piece of writing and in oral reports.

Academic Dishonesty

Academic dishonesty refers to acts of plagiarism, cheating and falsification of research data. Plagiarism is taking and passing off as one’s own the ideas, writings, computer-generated material, etc., of others: that is, the incorporation into one’s written or oral reports of any unacknowledged published, unpublished or oral material from the work of another. It is the right of the faculty member to whom such reports are submitted to decide whether plagiarism has been committed. Obviously, no faculty member makes such a determination without evidence. Factors contributing to that determination include the degree of dependence on unacknowledged outside material, inadequate acknowledgment or the presence of misleading references. In any particular course, students should contact the individual faculty member for information about acceptable and appropriate methods of acknowledgment.

Cheating is using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information or study aids in any academic exercise.

Falsification of research data involves the intentional misrepresentation of circumstances, procedures, participants and/or results of research projects. For additional information on what constitutes plagiarism, contact the Writing Center, Library North 1209.

Adjudication

Cases of alleged plagiarism, cheating and falsification of research data reported by faculty members are referred to the appropriate college committee for adjudication.

Academic Grievance Procedures

If a student has a complaint about a grade or other academic grievance, the first step is to talk to the instructor involved. If the matter is not settled satisfactorily, the student should contact the department chair or division director about the complaint and submit the complaint through the formal grievance procedure established by the department. The department decision may, if the student still feels aggrieved, be appealed to the appropriate dean.

Copyright Law

Students should be aware that copyright laws cover photocopying and other reproductions of materials. Students should contact faculty members or library staff for information regarding these laws.

Classroom Discipline

Any instructor may exclude from attendance any student who, in the instructor’s judgment, has seriously impaired the class’s ability to achieve the objectives of the course.

The student may appeal the instructor’s action to the department or school via the department’s grievance procedure. If the student is not satisfied with the ruling or recommendation emerging from the grievance hearings, an appeal may be brought to the appropriate dean.

Attendance in Classes

Students are expected to attend all scheduled classes, laboratories and discussions. Instructors may establish their own attendance criteria for a course. They may establish both the number of absences permitted to receive credit for the course as well as the number of absences after which the final grade may be adjusted downward. In such cases it is expected that the instructor stipulate such requirements in the syllabus and that the syllabus be made available to students at or near the beginning of classes. In the absence of such statements, instructors have the right to deny a student the privilege of taking the final examination or of receiving credit for the course, or may prescribe other academic penalties if the student misses more than 25 percent of the total class sessions. Excessive tardiness may count as absence.

Access To University Records

The Freedom of Information Law (Public Officers Law, Article 6), provides rights of access to University records, except those that fall within one of the nine categories of deniable records [section 87(2)].

Written application for examination and copying of accessible records must be made during regular business hours on the approved forms or in a letter addressed to the Records Access Officer, Office of University Counsel, 614 Couper Administration Building. Appeals of a denial of requested information may be taken within 30 days to Jeffrey L. Perez, Office of the Vice Chancellor and Secretary of the University, State University of New York, State University Plaza, Albany, NY 12246.

Student Records

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), commonly known as the Buckley Amendment, provides students with access to their files and assures them of the confidentiality of their records. Undergraduates’ main academic files are kept in the University Registrar’s Office. Graduate records are kept in the office of the vice provost for research and graduate studies. The University is not required by legislation to make available to students files kept in the office of the New York State University Police, Binghamton; Binghamton University Counseling Center or the Student Health Center. Students with files in these offices should contact the appropriate office with any questions.

There is to be no oral or written release of personally identifiable information from any student’s educational record without the signed and dated consent of the student, except to:

a. authorized University personnel defined by the person responsible for the file as having a reasonable need to know
b. state and federal education authorities to whom information must be made available by statute and/or for the audit of federal programs
c. organizations and educational agencies involved in testing, administering financial aid, or improving instruction, provided the information is presented anonymously
d. accrediting agencies
e. appropriate persons to comply with a court-ordered subpoena, in which case an attempt is made to notify the student in advance
f. appropriate persons in the case of emergency
g. University counsel

Information printed in the University Directory and information routinely released to the public, such as Commencement listings, election results and rosters of athletic teams, is regarded as public or "directory information" and, as such, may be released without student consent.

The following information is defined as directory information and may be routinely released unless specified differently by the student:

• Name

• Local address and telephone number

• Home address and telephone number

• E-mail address

• Class level

• Degree information (including any associated majors, certificates or minors)

• Dates of attendance

Students should be aware that even though they may request and receive directory exclusion status, it is a federal requirement that the University promptly provide lenders and guarantee agencies with any information it has regarding the last known address, surname, employer and employer address of a borrower who attends or has attended the University.

Information that is not classified as directory information and cannot be released to third parties without written consent of the student includes (but is not limited to) the following:

• Grades

• Grade-point average

• Student course schedules (including class name, meeting times and meeting places)

• Financial aid information

• Student identification number (usually Social Security number)

Third-party sources requesting to know a student’s course schedule for "emergency purposes" should be referred to the New York State University Police, Binghamton. University Police will attempt to ascertain the nature of the emergency and contact the student with the message.

Other information occasionally released in a routine manner to appropriate representatives of various media for publicity purposes includes:

• awards and academic degrees awarded at Binghamton University

• participation in recognized University activities (election outcomes, membership in athletic teams, participation in plays, etc.)

• personal information on members of University athletic teams (height, weight, high school, etc.).

Students with questions about their records or wishing to withhold their names from the University Directory should contact the Registrar’s Office (777-6087).

Responsible Conduct of Research Background

The Public Health Service and National Science Foundation require recipients of grants to develop policies on scientific misconduct and adopt procedures to both uncover acts of research fraud and examine allegations of misconduct in the conduct of research. On the advice of the Graduate Council and its Advisory Committee for Scholarship and Research, the University has adopted the following policies regarding the responsible conduct of research in all fields throughout the University.

Definition

Research misconduct is defined as fabrication, falsification, plagiarism or other serious deviation from accepted practices within the scholarly community in proposing, conducting or reporting research and creative scholarly activity. It does not include honest error or honest differences in interpretations or judgments of data.

Policy

The University has established a procedure to review reports of research misconduct. The principles associated with Binghamton’s policy and procedure are as follows:

1. The University shall treat all parties with justice and fairness and shall be sensitive to each person’s reputation and responsibilities.

2. Procedures shall preserve the highest attainable degree of confidentiality compatible with an effective investigation response.

3. Procedures shall be as expeditious as possible in leading to the resolution of the charges in a timely manner.

4. The integrity of the process shall be maintained by carefully avoiding any real or apparent conflict of interest.

Procedure

The vice provost for research and graduate studies (VPR) has primary responsibility for overseeing research integrity, and shall appoint a research standards officer (RSO), who will be primarily responsible for the correct observance of the procedures set forth below. The RSO will normally be the operations manager of the Research Foundation at Binghamton.

Reports of misconduct shall be handled in a four-stage process:

• an inquiry to determine whether the allegation or related issue warrants further investigation;

• when warranted, an investigation to collect and examine all pertinent evidence;

• a formal finding on the allegation; and

• appropriate administrative action on the matter.

1. Inquiry

a. The contact person for allegations of research misconduct is the research standards officer. The contact person shall be responsible for securing and maintaining written records for all allegations.

b. An inquiry shall be made into any allegation that the initiator (the person making the allegation) provides in writing to the RSO. The purpose of this inquiry is to determine whether a full investigation is warranted. The RSO will notify the respondent (the person about whom the allegation is made) in writing of the allegations (maintaining the confidentiality of the initiator), and of the respondent’s right to submit a written response to the allegation. The RSO shall submit the allegation along with all evidence that may exist, any written rebuttal from the respondent, and any other pertinent documentation to the Advisory Committee for Scholarship and Research of the Graduate Council for review. The RSO will provide staff support to the committee. The Advisory Committee shall make a written recommendation to the VPR on whether a formal investigation is warranted. This process must be completed within 60 days of the receipt of the initial allegation unless an extension of time is approved by the VPR.

c. Within 10 days of receiving the recommendation, the VPR, after consulting with Legal Affairs and the RSO, shall determine whether to conduct an investigation, to drop the matter or to take some other appropriate action. If the VPR decides not to pursue the matter further, the RSO will seal all files and notify the respondent and the initiator in writing that allegations have been dropped. If the VPR decides to proceed with an investigation, the RSO will notify the respondent and initiator in writing, and the VPR will notify the respondent’s chair, dean and vice president; the RSO will also notify external funding agencies and governmental offices as contractually required.

2. Investigation

a. The VPR, within 30 days of the inquiry report, will appoint an Investigation Panel of persons who have no conflicts of interest with the respondent and have research backgrounds that qualify them to understand the subject matter of the alleged research misconduct. The panel will consist of three persons, at least one of whom must be a faculty member. The respondent may challenge any panel member, within 14 days of written notification of panel membership, on the ground that the member does not meet the above criteria.

b. The VPR shall define the subject matter of the investigation in a written charge to the Investigation Panel. The VPR may change the subject matter during investigation if substantive new material is discovered by the Investigation Panel; the panel must notify the VPR of such new material.

c. The RSO will convene the first meeting of the Investigation Panel, and will provide staff assistance to the panel. The panel will select a chair at the first meeting.

d. The panel shall present a written report to the VPR within 90 days of its appointment. This report will contain an explicit finding of fact with respect to each allegation in the investigation charge listing the supporting evidence, and will describe the investigative process used. The report will also state the panel’s conclusions as to whether any of the proven allegations violate research integrity. Investigation will be completed within 120 days or an extension must be justified by the vice provost.

e. A copy of the report will be made available by the RSO to the respondent. The respondent may submit written comments within 14 days of receipt of report to the VPR through the RSO.

3. Finding

The VPR will send the report, with any written comments of the respondent, to the president through the vice president for academic affairs, together with the VPR’s recommendations.

4. Action

a. Where allegations are not substantiated, the University shall take action to clear the reputations of those falsely accused; all files relating to the case will be sealed.

b. When the findings of the investigation substantiate the allegation of misconduct, the president shall initiate appropriate action, depending on the nature of the misconduct and the employment status of the individual involved, and shall notify the sponsor of the action if the research was performed with external support. United University Professions -represented employees may be disciplined according to Article 19 of the agreement with UUP or may be subject to such other action as the president deems appropriate.

c. The research record shall be corrected if fabricated or fraudulent information has been published.

Notification Of Other Agencies During Process

1. Criminal Activities. If any criminal activities are discovered or claimed during inquiry or investigation, University Counsel shall be informed.

2. Federal Sponsored Research. Federal agencies will be kept informed of all inquiries and investigations as required contractually. Specifically:

a. in the early inquiry stage if there is one or more of the following:

• an immediate health hazard;

• need to protect sponsor resources;

• need to protect human or animal subjects;

• need to protect person reporting misconduct.

b. when the VPR recommends an investigation.

c. the findings of the investigation and the institutional sanctions.

Student Research Projects

1. Students who intend to contact private, voluntary or governmental agencies as part of their research in an academic project should first ask the faculty member who assigned the project to secure permission and cooperation from University and agency officials.

2. Students engaged in research, independent study, internships or other courses/projects involving human subjects must be made fully aware of their ethical, legal and moral responsibilities and their potential legal/financial liabilities when participating in such activities. Students planning research and/or coursework involving human subjects should consult their faculty adviser for project design and methodology. The University’s Human Subjects Research Review Committee reviews and must approve all research activities involving human subjects; HSRRC approval must be obtained prior to the initiation of the research. The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs staff provides the appropriate review forms and guidance to initiate the human-subjects research review process.

3. Students planning research and/or coursework involving live vertebrate animals should consult their faculty adviser for project design and methodology. In addition, the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) must first review and approve such projects to ensure compliance with University, state and federal regulations regarding the humane care and treatment of vertebrate animals. For appropriate review forms and guidance, contact
the coordinator for animal care at
777-6136.

4. Students planning projects involving the use of recombinant DNA molecules must consult with their faculty adviser for proper project protocol. The Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) oversees all research on campus involving the use of recombinant DNA molecules in order to ensure compliance with both University and federal regulations. IBC approval must be obtained prior to the initiation of any research involving the use of recombinant DNA molecules. Further information and guidelines are available from the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs at 777-6136.

5. Students planning research projects involving the use of radioactive materials must consult with their faculty adviser for proper project protocol. The Radioactive Safety Committee oversees all research on campus involving the use of radioactive materials. For further information, contact the radiation safety officer at 777-4370.

Unlawful Sale of Dissertations, Theses, and Term Papers

The following is a reproduction of section (213b) of the Education Law of New York State, concerning the illegal sale of term papers, theses or dissertations:

1. No person shall, for financial consideration, or the promise of financial consideration, prepare, offer to prepare, cause to be prepared, sell or offer for sale to any person any written material which the seller knows, is informed or has reason to believe is intended for submission as a dissertation, thesis, term paper, essay, report or other written assignment by a student in a university, college, academy, school or other educational institution to such institution or to a course, seminar or degree program held by such institution.

2. Nothing herein contained shall prevent such educational institution or any member of its faculty or staff from offering courses, instruction, counseling or tutoring for research or writing as part of a curriculum or other program conducted by such educational institution. Nor shall this section prevent any educational institution or any member of its faculty or staff from authorizing students to use statistical, computer or any other services which may be required or permitted by such educational institution in the preparation, research or writing of a dissertation, thesis, term paper, essay, report or other written assignment. Nor shall this section prevent tutorial assistance rendered by other persons which does not include the preparation, research or writing of a dissertation, thesis, term paper, essay, report or other written assignment intended for submission to such educational institution in fulfillment of the requirements for a degree, diploma, certificate or course of study. Nor shall any person be prevented by the provisions of this section from rendering services for a fee which shall be limited to the typing, transcription or reproduction of a manuscript.

3. Nothing contained within this section shall prevent any person from selling or offering for sale a publication or other written material which shall have been registered under the United States laws of copyright, provided, however, that the owner of such copyright shall have given his authorization or approval for such sale, and provided further that such publication or other written material shall not be intended for submission as a dissertation, thesis, term paper, essay, report or other written assignment to such educational institution within the state of New York in fulfillment of the requirements for a degree, diploma, certificate or course of study.

4. No person shall sell, assign or otherwise transfer for business or for any other purpose to any person any information and material of a personal or private nature acquired from a purchaser of a dissertation, thesis, term paper, essay, report or other written assignment without the prior consent of such purchaser. The term "information and material of a personal or private nature" as used in this subdivision shall include, but not be limited to, the name of such purchaser, his address and telephone number, the name of such educational institution, the name or number of the course, the name of the faculty member or members for whom such written assignment has been prepared, and any description of the research involved or the nature of such written assignment.

5. A violation of the provisions of this section shall constitute a class B misdemeanor.

6. The attorney general and district attorney of the county wherein a violation of this section occurs shall have concurrent authority to investigate and prosecute any violation of this section and any related violations discovered during the course of such investigation.

7. Whenever there shall be a violation of this section, an application also may be made by the attorney general in the name of the people of the state of New York to a court or justice having jurisdiction to issue an injunction and, upon notice to the defendant of not less than five days, to enjoin and restrain the continuance of such violation; and if it shall appear to the satisfaction of the court or justice that the defendant has, in fact, violated this section, an injunction may be issued by such court or justice, enjoining and restraining any further violation, without requiring proof that any person has, in fact, been injured or damaged thereby. In any such proceeding the court may make allowances to the attorney general as provided in section 8303, subdivision six of the civil practice law and rules. In connection with any such proposed application, the attorney general is authorized to take proof and make a determination of the relevant facts and to issue subpoenas in accordance with the civil practice law and rules. Additionally, the attorney general may apply in any such proceeding for a monetary penalty of not more than 1,000 dollars per violation.

Academic Progress and Standing

Academic Standing

To remain in good academic standing, students must demonstrate that they are passing courses at a satisfactory rate to earn a bachelor’s degree in a reasonable period of time; that is, they are required to show a reasonable rate of progress toward their degree. Students in all schools must maintain a satisfactory grade-point average. Academic progress is reviewed at the end of the fall and spring semesters. If students fail to maintain satisfactory academic standing, they are subject to dismissal. For detailed discussion of how academic standing is computed in the various undergraduate schools, see the individual school sections in this Bulletin.

Grade-Point Averages

Grade-point averages are computed for students in all the University’s undergraduate schools.

For the purpose of computing semester or cumulative averages, each letter grade is assigned a quality point value as follows:

A = 4.0 C+ = 2.3

A– = 3.7 C = 2.0

B+ = 3.3 C– = 1.7

B = 3.0 D = 1.0

B– = 2.7 F = 0.0

These grade values are combined with course credit hours to produce a grade-point average.

Repeating Courses

Students may not gain additional credit by repeating an undergraduate course in which they received a passing grade, except where this option is specified in the course description in this Bulletin. Harpur College students should see the school section.

Academic Probation and Dismissal

The academic standards committee of each school determines policies by which students are placed on academic probation when academic performance, as reflected in the grade-point average, raises doubts about the students’ capability to complete requirements for the bachelor’s degree. Academic probation does not imply either suspension or dismissal, and does not preclude the students’ registering or receiving financial aid. Academic probation ordinarily entails a contract with the student to complete a specified amount of coursework in a specified period of time at a specified level of performance. Students are subject to academic dismissal from the University at any time their record warrants. Students dismissed for academic reasons may apply for readmission by following the procedures outlined in "General Readmission Policies" below. The students must also explain in writing any extenuating circumstances that contributed to the poor record. If readmitted, their continued enrollment is subject to the academic standing requirements of the school. Students dropped from a Binghamton University school may not be readmitted to another Binghamton school without the approval of the deans of both schools. Confidentiality of student records is maintained in accordance with the Family Education Right and Privacy Act of 1974. (See Rules of Student Conduct.)

Dropping a Course or withdrawing from the University

Students who wish their records to indicate good standing when dropping a course or withdrawing from the University must follow formal drop and withdrawal procedures. Mere absence from class does not constitute due notice of drop or withdrawal. Students are advised to check the school sections in this Bulletin for additional discussion of the regulations.

In general, undergraduates may drop a course, with the instructor’s permission, up to the published drop deadline. Such a course will not appear on the academic record. After the drop deadline, students must have the permission of the instructor and the appropriate academic advising office on an approved Late Drop Petition Form to drop the course. Students must cite extraordinary circumstances to justify a late drop; that is, circumstances beyond their control and beyond their ability to foresee. Poor judgment or academic incompetence do not qualify as extraordinary circumstances. The Late Drop Petition Form may be obtained from the academic advising office of the college or school in which they are enrolled. If approved, the processing of the petition must be accompanied by payment of a late drop fee.

Students wishing to withdraw from the University during a given semester must complete a University Withdrawal Form, available in the Registrar’s Office, and return it to the Office of Student Accounts. Students may officially withdraw from the University up to the last day of classes for the semester. Such an action is noted on their records as an Official Withdrawal and, in place of a regular grade, the courses have the appropriate school mark for withdrawal. Students who drop all courses without having completed an official withdrawal form are considered unofficially withdrawn and have such a notation posted on the academic record.

Involuntary Medical Or Psychological Withdrawal Of Students

Students may be involuntarily withdrawn from the University based on the recommendation of the medical director of the University Health Service or the director of the University Counseling Center without academic penalty; that is, they may continue as students in good academic standing and are eligible to return upon clearance by the associate vice president and dean of students. Efforts are made to preserve a student’s academic progress with Incompletes and/or withdrawals through consultation with faculty. If there are irreconcilable disagreements in these discussions, the provost will make the final decision(s) about the disposition of the student’s academic records.

Recommendations for involuntary withdrawals are submitted to the associate vice president and dean of students for appropriate action. Students are sent written notification of the intended action. Appeals may be made in writing to the vice president for student affairs within 10 business days. See the Financial Aid section for refund policies.

Students who are involuntarily withdrawn from the University for medical or psychological reasons are not readmitted without a recommendation from either the medical director of the University Health Service or the director of the University Counseling Center.

 

General Readmission Policies

Candidates matriculated for undergraduate degrees who interrupt their education at Binghamton University and later wish to return must be formally readmitted. One exception is for students who withdraw from all classes during a major (spring or fall, not summer) semester: they will receive a student data form from the registrar permitting registration for the next semester and need not apply for readmission. Students who leave after the end of a semester in which any courses were completed must file for readmission, using the readmission forms available from the Admissions Office. Students must complete and file the readmission form no later than two weeks before the start of classes for the term in which they plan to return.

Non-degree/non-matriculated students may interrupt their studies for as long as two major (fall or spring) semesters without having to file for formal readmission. After two semesters have elapsed without enrollment, a data form is no longer sent, and a readmission form must be completed no later than two weeks prior to the start of classes for the desired semester.

Note: All students enrolled in the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at the time studies were interrupted must receive clearance from the director of EOP in order to resume their studies.

Students dismissed for academic or other reasons should contact their college or school’s academic advising office or the Admissions Office for any conditions to be satisfied before readmission is approved.

All Decker School of Nursing students must file for readmission and have an interview at the school before re-enrolling. Further details may be found in the Decker School of Nursing readmission section in this Bulletin.

In addition, returning students who require on-campus housing must inform the Residential Life office of their intent to return; notification must be made by April 15 for the fall semester and by Nov. 15 for the spring semester. Students requiring financial aid should notify the Student Financial Aid and Employment Office by April 15 for the fall semester and by Nov. 15 for the spring semester. After the indicated dates there can be no guarantee of housing or financial aid, unless specifically authorized by the appropriate office.

 

Student Absences for Religious Beliefs

In accordance with New York state Education Law 224-a, student absences may be excused as follows:

 

1. No person shall be expelled from or be refused admission as a student to an institution of higher education for reason that he or she is unable, because of his or her religious beliefs, to register or attend classes or to participate in any examination, study or work requirements on a particular day or days.

2. Any student in an institution of higher education who is unable, because of his or her religious beliefs, to attend classes on a particular day or days shall, because of such absence on the particular day or days, be excused from any examination or any study or work requirement.

3. It shall be the responsibility of the faculty and of the administration officials of each institution of higher education to make available to each student who is absent from school because of his or her religious beliefs an equivalent opportunity to register for classes or make up any examination, study or work requirements that he or she may have missed because of such absences on any particular day or days. No fees of any kind shall be charged by the institution for making available to the said student such equivalent opportunity.

4. If registration, classes, examinations, study or work requirements are held on Fridays after 4 p.m. or on Saturdays, similar or makeup classes, examinations, study or work requirements, or opportunity to register shall be made available on other days where it is possible and practicable to do so. No special fees shall be charged to the student for these classes, examinations, study or work requirements, or registration held on other days.

5. In effectuating the provisions of this section, it shall be the duty of the faculty and of the administrative officials of each institution of higher education to exercise the fullest measure of good faith. No adverse or prejudicial effects shall result to any student because of his or her availing himself or herself of the provisions of this section.

6. Any student who is aggrieved by the alleged failure of any faculty or administrative officials to comply in good faith with the provisions of this section shall be entitled to maintain an action or proceeding in the supreme court of the county in which such institution of higher education is located for the enforcement of his or her rights under this section.

Official Transcripts

The complete academic records of undergraduates are maintained by the Registrar’s Office. An official transcript is a student’s complete listing of all coursework taken at the University. Students may obtain copies of their transcripts, or request that the University send them directly to other institutions, provided the students are in good financial standing (free of delinquencies) with the University. For a transcript to be considered official, it must be sent to a third party; those transcripts sent directly to students will carry the notation "issued to student."

Requests for official transcripts may be sent in writing to the Registrar’s Office. In addition, students may visit that office to make a request in person. Telephone requests cannot be accepted. Transcript requests can be accepted via a facsimile machine and will be treated the same as a written request. All requests for transcripts must include the student’s name, ID number, dates of attendance, number of transcripts being requested and a complete destination address. Additionally, the transcript will not be released without the signature of the student. An unofficial version of a transcript may be faxed to a provided number with a follow-up mailing of an official version to a provided address for a fee of $15. The Registrar’s Office fax number is 607-777-6515.

 

Certification of Degrees

Undergraduates should file an Application for Degree form with the Registrar’s Office (Student Wing 119) by the drop/
add deadline of the semester prior to graduation.

For undergraduate students who have filed an Application For Degree, degree certification is completed by sending the students a graduation check that runs against the Degree Audit Reporting System. If the degree check indicates that requirements will not be complete, the student should consult with the major department or academic advising.

Graduate students should file a Declaration of Candidacy Form with the Graduate School. To ensure timely certification of the degree, students should file these forms as soon as possible.


Graduate Information

Grades

The grading system of the Graduate School applies to all graduate-level courses offered in Harpur College of Arts and Sciences, the Decker School of Nursing, the School of Education and Human Development, the School of Management and the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science. Grades are on a letter scale: A through C–, pass; F, failure. Grades of S (satisfactory) and U (unsatisfactory) may be used in a limited number of cases, described below, for which no greater precision in grading is required. The grades of S and U are not assigned numerical value and thus are not averaged in with other grades in computing grade-point averages. A grade of S denotes a minimum level of academic performance equivalent to at least a B.

For the purpose of computing semester or cumulative averages, each letter grade is assigned a quality point value as follows:

A = 4.0 C+ = 2.3

A– = 3.7 C = 2.0

B+ = 3.3 C– = 1.7

B = 3.0 F = 0.0

B– = 2.7

These grade values are combined with course credit hours to produce a grade-point average.

Course Credits

All courses, unless otherwise noted, are assigned four credit hours.

Graduate School Transcripts

The official transcript of record for all students enrolled in advanced degree programs or as non-matriculated graduate students of Binghamton University is the transcript of the Graduate School, which provides a complete record of all academic work attempted. Undergraduate work is indicated on a separate undergraduate transcript. Graduate students with both undergraduate and graduate academic records at Binghamton have the option of requesting release only of the Graduate School transcript.

Interpretation of Transcript Symbols

In addition to the letter grades and corresponding quality point values described above, the following symbols may appear on official transcripts for the Graduate School:
X - audit; no numerical credit given for the course.
I - incomplete; course not completed for reasons acceptable to the instructor. A grade of "I" gives no grade points.
W - withdrawn; the student withdrew from the course following the eighth week of the semester, and the instructor did not rate the student's performance. A grade of "W" is not counted in computing grade-point averages, nor does the course earn credit hours.
WF - withdrawn failing; the student withdrew from the course following the eighth week of the semester, having performed at a level deemed by the instructor to be below the minimum passing grade (C-) of the Graduate School. A grade of WF is assigned a quality-point value of 0 in computing grade-point averages.
WP - withdrawn passing; the student withdrew from the course following the eighth week of the semester, having performed at a level deemed by the instructor to be at or above the minimum passing grade (C-) of the Graduate School. A grade of WP is not counted in computing grade-point averages, nor does the course earn credit hours.
R - registered; the student maintained required matriculated status during the semester through continuous registration, (course number 700) or registration in a research skills (707) course. Courses assigned R grades are not applied toward degree progression.
S/U - satisfactory/unsatisfactory; the following limitations apply to the use of S/U grading:
500-589-master's-level courses and seminars: S grading cannot be used for courses numbered in this range; only regular letter grading options apply.
590, 592-596, and 598-internship or practicum courses: at the option of the instructor (not the student), either S/U or regular letter grading may be used.
591-college teaching of the discipline: only S/U grading may be used.
597-independent study: at the option of the instructor (not the student), either S/U or regular letter grading may be used.
599-thesis: only S/U grading may be used.*
600-696-doctoral research seminars: at the option of the instructor (not the student), either S/U or regular letter grading may be used.
697-independent study: at the option of the instructor (not the student), either S/U or regular letter grading may be used.
698-predissertation research: only S/U grading may be used.*
699-dissertation: only S/U grading may be used. However, at the option of the members of the dissertation committee, the candidate's performance on the dissertation project may, at the time of the committee's final approval of the dissertation, be evaluated either as pass or pass with distinction. Such notation is forwarded to the Graduate School Office to be made a part of the candidate's official transcript of record.*
*599, 698, and 699 registration for one credit is encouraged under campus policy. Such registration is normally considered full time whenever the principal supervisor confirms that the student is spending appropriate time and effort in research. This is done by the completion of a Certification of Full-time Status Form.

Full-Time Status

Graduate students on funding are required to maintain full-time registration. Full-time status is defined as 12 credits per semester at level one (students with fewer than 24 completed graduate credits), or nine credits at level two (students who have completed more than 24 graduate credits). Audited courses do not count toward the credit total. Non-funded students may register for one credit of Thesis (599), Exam Preparation (648), Pre-Dissertation Research (698) or Dissertation Research (699) and be certified full time, provided the supervisor and program director indicate that the student is making a full-time investment in research.

Determination of Academic Standing

A cumulative average of at least 3.0 is required for a graduate degree. A graduate student who receives a grade of F may repeat the course, and the program officers, at their option, may require the student to do so.

Course Repeat Policy

Students are permitted to repeat for credit a graduate course in which they earned a grade of B– or lower. This option is contingent on approval by the graduate program director and review by the Graduate School. A course may be repeated only once. In those cases in which students are on financial support, the repeated course is considered as part of the academic workload.

When a course is repeated, the grade received in the second attempt is substituted for the first in the computation of the grade-point average and in the award of credit. However, the first grade remains on the student transcript.

Probation

According to Graduate School policies, "the minimum requirement for continuing status in the Graduate School is the maintenance of a B average."

Students whose academic achievement falls below this standard should receive special counseling from their faculty advisers in order to improve their performance to satisfactory levels. In order to ensure that students receive such assistance when needed, the Graduate School has the following probation policies:

1. A graduate student whose cumulative grade-point average falls below 3.0 may be enrolled subsequently only on a probationary status. While on probation, the student must meet at least once each semester with the appropriate director of graduate studies to review academic performance and progress toward a return to good standing. A graduate student may spend a cumulative maximum of three semesters (excluding summer sessions) on probation.

2. A graduate student whose cumulative grade-point average falls below 2.6 is considered in academic jeopardy, as well as on probation. Students may be in academic jeopardy for only one semester.

Students whose grade-point average will place them on a fourth semester of probation, or a second semester in academic jeopardy, are not making satisfactory progress toward the degree. They are normally severed from the Graduate School. Their continued enrollment requires the specific endorsement of their director of graduate studies and approval by the vice provost.

This policy, adopted by the Graduate Council on Dec. 7, 1992, is in effect for students admitted for fall 1993 and beyond.

Policy on Graduate Student Severance or Removal of Support

Graduate students who do not meet academic standards may be dropped from their graduate program according to the process described above. Normally this process entails warning letters to students, who work with their faculty advisers to improve their grade-point average to satisfactory levels (3.0 or above) or to meet other specified program requirements (such as the passing of comprehensive exams or the completion of theses). If the necessary requirements are not attained within a specified period, the program’s director of graduate studies recommends to the dean of the Graduate School that the student be severed.

Graduate students are subject to the rules governing academic life listed elsewhere in this Bulletin. Accusations that students have committed acts of academic dishonesty may be brought before the Academic Standards Committee of the Graduate Council, which issues a finding and a recommendation to the dean of the Graduate School; the student receives a copy. A graduate student who is found to have violated the rules of academic integrity, who plagiarizes, cheats or falsifies research data, is subject to suspension or expulsion. Students have the right to appeal such recommendations to the dean of the Graduate School within 10 days.

Graduate students may be involuntarily withdrawn from the University for medical or psychological reasons, following the policies outlined in this Bulletin under "Involuntary Medical or Psychological Withdrawal of Students." All other recommendations to sever a student from the Graduate School or one of its programs, or to break a student’s assistantship contract or to revoke a fellowship, tuition scholarship or other source of financial support, are made to the vice provost, accompanied by appropriate documentation. The student should be informed of the basis for any such decision and can appeal it, using first the grievance procedure of the student’s program and then, if needed, the appeals procedures of the Graduate Council Grievance Committee. Action on a recommendation to remove support from or sever a student in good academic standing will await the outcome of the grievance procedure.

Incompletes

Graduate students who receive federal or state financial aid may lose these benefits if they take Incompletes. See the Graduate Academic Progress Charts elsewhere in this Bulletin for information on required numbers of completed credits.

Graduate students who are given a mark of Incomplete (I) normally will have a maximum of six months following the last day of classes to make up the Incomplete if they register in the subsequent semester and a maximum of one year if they do not register in the subsequent semester. Unless the coursework is completed by the student and a final letter grade is submitted by the instructor of the course, the mark of I reverts to the mark of withdrawn (W). Requests for extensions of the Incomplete deadlines require the approval of the instructor of the course and the dean. No extensions of Incompletes are considered beyond the maximum allowable extension date, which is one calendar year from when the Incomplete was assigned.

Once an Incomplete has reverted to a W, no further opportunity to complete the course is available to the student.

It is the normal expectation that, within the limits set forth above, faculty will take no longer than one month to file a final letter grade for the course. A grade of Incomplete is automatically assigned in any course for which the instructor has not submitted a grade.

All courses taken by graduate students, including courses numbered below 500, are subject to the foregoing policies on Incomplete grades.

Residence Requirement

Regardless of the student’s previous graduate experience, the minimum residence requirement for any graduate degree is 24 credit hours. Most doctoral candidates meet the University residence requirement before taking comprehensive exams.

Credit hours earned under any of the following rubrics normally may not be counted toward the Graduate School’s minimum residence requirement: college teaching of the discipline (591), Thesis (599), Pre-Dissertation Research (698) and Dissertation (699).

New and Revised Courses

Courses of instruction proposed by academic units as regular offerings within the curriculum of the Graduate School must be approved in advance by the Graduate Council. New course proposals must follow the information format established by the council, and must be formally approved by program graduate committees prior to their forwarding to the dean for agenda action by the council.

In practice, the Graduate Council has delegated primary authority for action on new course proposals to its curriculum committee. Approval of a new course by the curriculum committee is formally noted on each agenda for regular meetings of the Graduate Council, with the committee’s approval standing as final unless two or more council members request that formal review and action be taken by the council.

The descriptions of courses as initially approved by the curriculum committee or Graduate Council remain official unless and until formal revisions are made and approved. Revisions of existing course numbers, titles, descriptions or credit-hour assignments may be proposed at any time by program graduate committees to the vice provost. In cases where the dean believes the revision of an existing course or courses of instruction implies substantive changes in the academic scope or general requirements of an advanced degree program, review by the Graduate Council’s curriculum committee is required.

Program graduate committees may propose new courses as experimental, or "X," offerings. Experimental graduate courses require the approval of the dean, and may be formally offered only once. Courses offered on an experimental basis cannot be offered a second time unless they are formally approved as regular offerings according to the procedure given above. Proposals for experimental course offerings must follow the information format prescribed by the Graduate Council for regular course proposals.

The curriculum of the Graduate School is reviewed annually. Approved courses of instruction that have not been offered within the previous four semesters may be dropped from the curriculum by the vice provost, following formal notice to and consultation with program directors of graduate studies.

Course Numbering

Courses numbered 400 through 499 are advanced undergraduate courses for which graduate credit can be assigned only when a graduate student has successfully petitioned for graduate credit. The form "Petition For Graduate Credit For Advanced Undergraduate (400 level) Course" must be completed and submitted to the Graduate School at the time of registration.

In special instances, graduate credit for 400-level courses is granted by the Graduate School, on the recommendation of the instructor and the department chair, departmental graduate chair or dean of the school. The student must do additional work beyond that required for undergraduate students in the course. Within six weeks after the start of the semester, the instructor files with the Graduate School a statement on the nature of additional work the student is doing in the advanced undergraduate course. In general, approval of graduate credit for advanced undergraduate courses is limited to unique program circumstances usually involving interdisciplinary work. Graduate students should not expect to receive graduate credit for more than two 400-level courses.

Courses numbered 500 and above are graduate courses, ordinarily open only to graduate students, primarily at the master’s level; 600-level courses are research seminars primarily for doctoral students.

Research Skills (707) Courses

The policies of the Graduate School allow students to register each semester for one to four credit hours of 707, Research Skills. Students may enroll in 707 courses only when the faculty of the program have determined that there are specific research skills essential to the student’s degree work, and that such skills are not remedial — that is, are not normal admission requirements in that degree program. Research skills (707) credits taken by graduate students may not be used to satisfy course requirements in any graduate degree program and cannot be used in determining level 2 enrollment status.

Graduate Students in Undergraduate Courses

Courses numbered 499 or lower are not counted for graduate credit without special permission of the Graduate School (see above section on Course Numbering).

Undergraduate Students Beginning Graduate
Programs

Undergraduate students who are within eight credits of graduation may register for up to two graduate-level courses and receive graduate credit, provided the graduate courses are not used to meet the undergraduate degree requirements. (These courses are offered at undergraduate tuition rates when the student is within eight credit hours of graduation and files the necessary form.) When graduate courses are not taken with the intent of fulfilling undergraduate requirements, such graduate hours do not count toward full-time status for financial aid purposes; thus, undergraduates taking graduate courses may not be eligible for certain types of financial aid.

To receive graduate credit for such courses, the undergraduate student must complete the Petition to Receive Graduate Credits as an Undergraduate form (available from the Registrar or the Graduate School). The form is then filed with the Registrar and the Student Accounts Office.

While courses taken by undergraduates (and not used to meet undergraduate degree requirements) will appear on the undergraduate transcript, these courses are not counted toward the undergraduate degree or used in the calculation of the final GPA. The credits may be transferred to count toward the graduate degree.

Enrollment and Registration

Permission to register on days other than those designated must be obtained from the dean. Students registering later than the regular registration dates are charged a late registration fee. Students ordinarily are not admitted to any regular classes after the first 14 calendar days of the semester.

Payment of all outstanding charges, tuition and fees is a part of the registration process, and a student’s registration is not complete until full payment is made. Payment or arrangement for payment must be made with the Student Accounts Office prior to the first day of classes or, in the case of late enrollment, at the time of enrollment. Failure to conclude appropriate financial arrangements may result in the cancellation of the student’s enrollment in classes.

Changes in Program

Students may add a course or change course sections only during the first 14 calendar days of the semester and may drop a course without a grade being recorded during the first eight weeks of class. Students making changes in course enrollments (registrations) after the add/drop deadlines are assessed a late fee for each transaction.

1. To add, drop or change a course, students must obtain the written approval of the instructor and the department chair or the director of graduate studies. Signed forms are to be filed with the University Registrar’s Office.

2. Students may add or substitute courses, or change credit hours for courses carrying variable credit, without penalty within a period of 14 calendar days from the beginning of the semester. After that date, in addition to the normally required signatures, students must secure the signature of the dean.

3. Students may drop a course without restriction through the first eight weeks of class without a grade being recorded. If it is necessary for a student to drop a course after the eighth week of classes, submission of a W (withdrawn), WF (withdrawn failing) or WP (withdrawn passing) grade is determined by the instructor (see "Grades").

Dissertation Registration

All doctoral candidates must register for Dissertation (699) to maintain registration after admission to candidacy.

Doctoral students are not permitted to register for dissertation (699) credits before they have been formally admitted to candidacy for the degree. Admission to candidacy for any doctoral degree occurs when the student has completed all coursework and research skill requirements and has successfully passed the required comprehensive examinations. Doctoral students who have completed all coursework for the degree, but who have not yet satisfied research skill requirements or have not yet passed the comprehensive examinations, must register each semester for an appropriate number of credit hours under the rubric Pre-Dissertation Research (698).

Because work on the dissertation may be interrupted from time to time for a variety of reasons, students may register for Continuous Registration (700) if they are not actively engaged in research and writing during a particular semester. When students declare inactive status, it is assumed that only a minimum amount of faculty supervision is required for them to maintain matriculation. Students are limited to a maximum of two years (four semesters) of continuous registration (700) during the five-year period following the successful completion of the doctoral comprehensive examinations.

Withdrawals

Students who withdraw from all courses for which they are registered at the University must follow a formal withdrawal procedure if they wish their record to indicate good standing. Mere absence from class does not constitute due notice of withdrawal. Withdrawals are initiated with the University Registrar’s Office. No grades are recorded for students who formally withdraw within the first eight weeks of the semester.

Continuous Registration and Leaves of Absence

All students who have been admitted into a degree-granting program must maintain continuous registration each semester for a minimum number of credit hours, or must apply for a formal leave of absence. Students who do not register and who have not been granted a leave of absence are ineligible to return until readmitted. Graduate students are not required to maintain matriculation during the Summer Session unless they intend to complete their final degree requirements during this period.

Students who do not maintain registration become ineligible to return; they must reapply, paying a new application fee. Readmission is not automatic. Students who are readmitted are required to register for one credit for each semester they have not registered, plus one credit for the semester they re-enter, up to a maximum of four credits.

Graduate students in a degree program who wish to absent themselves from their studies for a semester or two should register for one credit of Continuous Registration (700). A leave of absence is granted only in exceptional circumstances, such as illness or other unusual personal hardship, and requires detailed justification. Leaves of absence are not granted to students working toward a graduate degree who are absenting themselves from campus for a semester or two to undertake thesis or dissertation research elsewhere; such students should maintain continuous registration. Students going off campus to fulfill an internship related to degree requirements should similarly register for at least one credit of Continuous Registration, unless the department or school specifies a course rubric and a minimum credit-hour registration to encompass such internship experience.

Students must be registered during the semester their degree requirements are completed.

Leaves of absence, since they are given for personal hardship reasons, are normally for a maximum of one year. If at all possible, requests for leaves of absence should be submitted one month prior to the semester for which leave is requested. When a leave of absence is granted, the period of leave is counted against the time limitation for completing the degree.

Students who withdraw to enter military service are granted full tuition refunds for the semester if no academic credit is received. Students required to withdraw for disciplinary reasons are not entitled to any refund of tuition.

Students withdrawn by the University Counseling Center for adjustment difficulties may be granted WPs (withdrawn passing) in courses in which they are currently enrolled.

Auditing of Courses

Students may satisfy their interest in a subject area or explore a new area of study through a course audit. By auditing, they participate in, but do not receive credit for, the course. Course Audit Petitions are available in the Registrar’s Office, the undergraduate advising offices and the Graduate School. Students may register for audits within the course add period only. Credit-bearing courses may not be changed to audit courses after the course add deadline, nor may audited courses be changed to credit courses after this deadline. Audited courses do not satisfy degree requirements.

Prospective auditors are advised of the following:

1. Students who audit a course must pay full tuition.

2. Audit students are expected to attend class regularly and to fulfill course requirements. Successful completion is listed on the transcript with a notation of AU in place of the grade; the course is expunged from the record if the student fails to meet the requirements.

3. A course taken on an audit basis will not be counted in determining full-time status for financial aid eligibility, student loan deferments, NCAA eligibility, assistantship or fellowship eligibility, on-campus housing, or for some health insurance coverage.

Credit by Examination

No provision exists within the Graduate School for students to receive course credit by demonstrating proficiency through examinations. However, demonstration of proficiency in the subject matter of a course, in a manner acceptable to the program graduate committee, may permit the student to receive a waiver of the requirement of that particular course. In such cases the normal procedure is to substitute an approved elective course carrying an equivalent number of credit hours toward the degree pursued. With the approval of the program graduate committee, it is also possible for a student to satisfy degree requirements with fewer than the minimum number of credit hours normally established for the program, provided that the Graduate School’s minimum residence requirements are met, and that the total number of graduate credit hours satisfactorily completed for any master’s-level degree is not fewer than 30.

Transfer of Graduate Credits from Other Universities

Students matriculated in advanced degree programs may petition to have relevant graduate credits transferred toward their Binghamton University Graduate School degrees. Students should submit a petition to the appropriate department or school graduate committee, using the form established for this purpose by the Graduate School. The petition must include a copy of the official transcript. Credits petitioned for transfer must not have been used to satisfy the requirements of another degree. Petitions must be forwarded to the dean for final approval. If the vice provost approves, the transferred credits are included on the student’s official Graduate School transcript as a single entry of total credits accepted in transfer.

Credits for which transfer is sought must have been earned in graduate-level courses passed with grades of at least B. Courses for which the student did not receive letter credit are not transferred. When courses are approved for transfer by the Graduate School, the letter grades are not reflected in the Binghamton University transcript, nor are they considered in determination of the student’s grade-point average. Courses taken more than five years prior to matriculation in the Graduate School are accepted only in rare instances. Credits earned through correspondence courses, or through courses or experiences offered under the auspices of proprietary schools, business or industrial training programs, or schools conducted by federal agencies such as the Department of Defense, are normally not considered for transfer.

Limitations on the number of credit hours that may be approved for transfer are set by the Graduate School’s minimum residence requirement of 24 credit hours for any advanced degree. Credits approved for transfer may not be applied toward this minimum residence requirement. For master’s programs requiring a minimum of 30 credit hours, therefore, a maximum of six transfer credits may be applied toward the degree. When master’s programs require more than 30 credit hours, the dean may accept a correspondingly larger number of transfer credits in individual cases.

Exchange Credits

When the special educational needs of a doctoral student at one SUNY institution can best be served by taking a course for credit at another unit of the SUNY system, the student should obtain a statement from the graduate program director, recommending that the student be admitted to the desired course at the institution preferred. The recommendation should state that the student has the prerequisites for the course and that, if the course is completed successfully, the credit for it will be accepted toward the degree. The statement from the department chair should be approved by the graduate dean of the student’s institution. It should then be sent to the graduate dean of the institution being visited, who clears it with the instructor of the course and the chair of the department concerned. When approval is obtained, the student is admitted as a special student for purposes of taking the course requested. The student pays appropriate tuition and fees at the institution being visited. If the student has a tuition scholarship at the home institution, that scholarship is recognized by the visited institution. At the completion of the course, the visited institution, on request, sends a transcript to the home institution.

Double-Degree Accounting

Students admitted to a graduate program may double-count some courses for credit toward two degrees, within certain guidelines. A candidate for two degrees of the same rank (e.g., master’s degrees) in separate disciplines may be allowed to take advantage of double-degree accounting in accordance with the following guidelines:

1. For students working toward two MA or two MS degrees, no double accounting is permissible.

2. For a student working toward an MA and an MS degree simultaneously, a maximum of three courses (12 credit hours) may be double accounted. Double accounting is similarly permissible for combinations of MA or MS degrees with the MBA degree.

3. For doctoral degrees, decisions about double-degree accounting are made on an ad hoc basis.

4. It is normally considered inappropriate to use thesis (599) or dissertation (699) credit hours for double accounting purposes.

Double-degree accounting requires endorsement by both program graduate committees and approval by the vice provost.

A candidate for two degrees of the same rank in the same discipline may be allowed to take advantage of double-degree accounting in accordance with the following guidelines:

1. An MAT candidate who wishes to pursue, concurrently or subsequently, an MA degree in the same discipline may claim double accounting for any and all courses, up to a total of five, that the department regularly lists as common to both its MA and MAT programs.

2. It is normally considered inappropriate to use MST coursework for double accounting purposes.

Policy Prohibiting Award of a Second Degree in the Same Field

State University of New York policy states that a second degree at the same level (e.g., master’s or doctorate) can be awarded only when a significant amount of additional coursework in a very different field is completed. Normally when a student has already earned a master’s or doctorate in a given discipline (e.g., economics, history, etc.) at either a foreign or a U.S. institution, a second degree at the same level in that discipline cannot be earned at Binghamton University.

Satisfactory Progress

Graduate students may be dropped from the Graduate School by action of the dean, on recommendation of the departmental or school graduate committee, if it appears that they are not making satisfactory progress toward the degree and that it is unlikely that requirements for the degree will be satisfactorily completed. The minimum requirement for continuing status in the Graduate School is the maintenance of a B average.

Master's Degree

At their discretion, departmental or school graduate committees recommend for the master’s degree those candidates who have:

1. Completed at least 24 credit hours of graduate coursework, exclusive of a thesis, in residence at Binghamton University.

2. Completed the required coursework presented for the degree (minimum total is 30 credit hours). A maximum of six hours of transfer credit is allowed for degree programs requiring 30 credit hours; a maximum of eight hours of transfer credit is allowed for degree programs requiring 32 credit hours.

3. Maintained at least a B average in courses approved by the departmental or school graduate committee and presented for the degree;

4. Fulfilled all departmental or school course requirements, with no credit for graduate courses in which a grade lower than C– has been received;

5. Given evidence satisfactory to their examination committees, by means of a master’s examination (written and/or oral) and required papers or a thesis, that they are familiar with basic hypotheses and techniques of their disciplines and are competent in applying them.

Doctoral Degree

At their discretion, departmental or school graduate committees recommend for the doctor of philosophy or doctor of education degree those candidates who have:

1. Fulfilled the University residence requirement;

2. Maintained at least a B average in courses approved by the departmental or school graduate committee and presented for the degree;

3. Fulfilled all departmental or school course requirements, with no credit for graduate courses in which a grade lower than C– has been received;

4. Given evidence satisfactory to their examination committees by means of a comprehensive examination (written and/or oral) that they are familiar with basic hypotheses and techniques of their discipline and are competent in applying them;

5. Satisfactorily fulfilled the departmental or school research skills requirement;

6. Submitted a dissertation, on a topic approved by the department, that embodies the results of original research and gives evidence of high scholarship.

Admission to PhD Candidacy

Matriculated students are admitted to candidacy for the doctoral degree by the dean, on recommendation of the appropriate academic unit, when they have passed required comprehensive examinations and met all research skills and coursework requirements, as certified by program submission of the Admission to Candidacy Form. Within six months of admission to candidacy, a copy of the dissertation prospectus approved by the dissertation committee must be submitted to the department or school office.

Candidates for the doctoral degree must complete all requirements for the degree, including the dissertation, within five years after admission to doctoral candidacy.

Dissertation Defense

The dissertation committee has direct charge of all matters pertaining to the dissertation. The dissertation must have the unanimous approval of the program before arrangements are made for the final examination for the degree.

Members of the dissertation committee serve on the examination committee, and the dissertation chair normally serves as examination chair. The list of examiners may include one or more faculty members outside a program, if they were members of the dissertation committee.

Outside examiner

To the examination committee members, the dean, upon recommendation from the department, adds an outside examiner as the representative of the faculty of the Graduate School. The outside examiner is either a Binghamton University faculty member from a related area outside the major department or division or someone from a related discipline outside the University. Normally, the outside examiner has no involvement in the supervision of a dissertation. The outside examiner’s function on the examination committee is to render an independent judgment and to assure that the dissertation satisfies Graduate School standards.

In special circumstances, particularly when a student would benefit from early counsel from a faculty member outside Binghamton, the department chair or director of graduate studies may petition the vice provost to appoint an outside examiner while the dissertation is still being written.

If the nominee is from another institution, the program officer should forward sufficient materials so the vice provost may evaluate the nominee’s academic credentials. The dean then invites the nominee or another faculty member to serve as outside examiner.

Thesis and Dissertation Preparation

For specific instructions regarding the preparation of master’s theses and doctoral dissertations, students should obtain from the Graduate School a copy of the Graduate School Student Handbook.

Requirements for Listing Major and Minor Fields

For advanced degree recipients, the major and minor fields of specialization satisfactorily completed are listed on the official Graduate School transcript. Such listings are limited to one major and two minor fields for doctoral degree candidates, and one major and one minor field for master’s degree candidates. Minor field listings may be of two types, intraprogram and interprogram. The listing of intraprogram minor fields is optional at the discretion of the program graduate committee.

Intraprogram Major and Minor Fields

Intraprogram major and minor fields to be listed formally on transcripts are normally limited to those fields of specialization listed in the program descriptions of this Bulletin. On recommendation by a program graduate committee, the dean may approve special intraprogram major and minor field listings in individual cases. The minimum requirements for intraprogram major and minor fields are determined for individual students by the program graduate committee. At the time of admission to candidacy for the degree (for doctoral students), or of recommendation for award of the degree (for master’s students), the program director of graduate studies must certify to the dean that the student has satisfactorily completed the approved major and minor specializations to be listed on the student’s official transcript.

Interprogram Minor Fields

Certain departments and schools offer minor fields of specialization that may be undertaken by students matriculated in other advanced degree programs on campus. Each participating department’s or school’s program graduate committee determines the specific requirements to be completed by students for each minor field it offers. As a minimum requirement, however, each approved interprogram minor must involve at least three four-credit graduate courses (which may include 400-level courses for which graduate credit has been individually sought and approved). It is also normally expected that students seeking to complete interprogram minors will have faculty members representing those fields on their PhD/EdD guidance committees or master’s advisory committees.

Before beginning coursework leading to an interprogram minor, students must seek and obtain formal approval from the graduate committee of the program in which they are matriculated. All coursework required for an interprogram minor must be completed prior to the student’s standing for the comprehensive examinations for the degree pursued. Interprogram minors should be explicitly covered as part of these comprehensive examinations. Concurrent with the recommendation of the student for admission to candidacy (for doctoral students) or for award of the degree (for master’s students), the director of the graduate program in which the minor field is completed must certify to the dean the student’s satisfactory completion of the minor to be listed on the student’s transcript.

In addition to the titles of approved and satisfactorily completed major and minor fields of specialization, official Graduate School transcripts show the titles of doctoral dissertations and master’s theses submitted in partial fulfillment of degree requirements. All such special transcript listings are made only at the time of completion of final degree requirements.

Completion Deadlines

For the spring semester, the deadline for fulfilling thesis and dissertation requirements is 10 days prior to Commencement. Students completing all degree requirements during the summer or fall semesters should contact their program unit or the Graduate School for deadlines.

Awarding of Graduate Degrees

When all requirements have been completed, departmental or school graduate committees so certify to the vice provost