2020-2021 Academic Catalog (August 2020 - July 2021) 
    Jun 21, 2024  
2020-2021 Academic Catalog (August 2020 - July 2021) [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Academics - Policies and Procedures

Academic regulations exist to assure that the University maintains recognized standards as an institution of higher learning. The University accepts its obligation to offer programs of quality which are recognized nationally and internationally.

Admission to Concord University provides the student the opportunity to achieve a higher education that includes the development of skills, ideas, and attitudes.

The facilities and activities of the institution are dedicated to the task of providing the climate for learning. Regulations, goals, and practices must be observed to provide equal educational opportunities for all students.

Some of the University regulations are established by State legislation, by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, or by national agencies that accredit the University. Concord regulations are designed to augment the degree as a meaningful acknowledgment of a graduate's educational achievement.


Academic Complaints

A student has a right to make a complaint regarding an academic matter or faculty action he or she believes is unfair or inappropriate, within the generally recognized standards of academic freedom and license. Such complaints should be made during the semester in which the course is taken and should be directed first to the instructor of record for the course.  Should the student not be satisfied after having an open and frank conversation with the instructor of record, the matter may be brought to the attention of the department chairperson of the instructor of record or to the Dean of the college in which the instructor serves.  The Dean or chairperson will speak to the instructor, and perhaps the student and instructor together, in an attempt to resolve the issue to everyone's mutual satisfaction.  If, at the end of that process, a student continues to believe that he or she has been treated unfairly and that as a consequence has received an inappropriate final grade for the course, the student may then submit a grade appeal (see paragraph below).

Academic Exceptions

Any exception to the academic regulations that apply to students at Concord University, including the requirements of the course of study for a particular degree, must be requested in writing. Deviation from established academic guidelines is considered to weaken the force of the regulations, is unfair to the students who are held to that particular requirement, and detracts from the academic reputation of the University and its degrees. Thus, substantial evidence from the student must be submitted. Exceptions will not be approved without significant, convincing evidence that a variance is justified.

The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs reviews these requests for academic exception with input from the student's academic adviser and department chairs.

The President of the University or a committee of the faculty occasionally may grant a hearing in appeal of a decision made by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, if requested in writing by the student.

Students will not be allowed to withdraw from a class with an exception in order to avoid earning a poor grade.

Academic Integrity Policy

The Concord University Honor Code was adopted by students, faculty, staff, administration, and the CU Board of Governors. The Code states: "As a member of the Concord University community, I will act with honesty and integrity in accordance with our fundamental principles, and I will respect myself and others while challenging them to do the same". The Code is intended to unite the Concord community behind a culture of honesty, integrity, and civility.

As reflected in the Honor Code, Concord University seeks to instill a set of values meant to inspire each student to conduct themselves responsibly, honestly, and ethically. The International Center for Academic Integrity (ICAI) defines academic integrity as a commitment to six fundamental values and associated behaviors. Those values include honesty, trust, fairness, respect, responsibility, and courage (https://academicintegrity.org/). Concord University is committed to instilling and transmitting these core values of academic integrity to our collective academic community. This includes taking measures to discourage academic misconduct and dishonesty, which are delineated in this policy in alignment with Board of Governors Policy #25 (Student Academic Rights).

Academic Misconduct and Dishonesty

Academic misconduct and dishonesty are morally unacceptable, as well as destructive to the learning and teaching atmosphere. Academic misconduct and dishonesty may result in a variety of penalties, including a zero on an assignment or syllabus category; a grade reduction on an assignment, syllabus category, or course; a failing grade for a course; academic probation; suspension; or dismissal from the university.

A failing course grade as a result of academic dishonesty will be recorded as an F on the final grade report, and the instructor will inform, in writing, the department chair and the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs who notifies, in writing, the Registrar's Office and the student. Course grades affected by academic dishonesty are not subject to the D/F forgiveness rule described below, and a student who is to receive a failing grade due to proven academic dishonesty may not drop the failed course with a grade of W. (See Grade Change Procedure) Any failing course grade or dismissal that results solely from academic misconduct or dishonesty will be identified as such on the student transcript.

Academic misconduct and dishonesty may include: plagiarism, cheating, bribery, misrepresentation, conspiracy and collusion, fabrication and falsification, duplicate submission, improper use of electronic devices, improper online behavior, and disruptive behavior (definitions from St. Petersburg College (https://spcollege.libguides.com/c.php?g=254383&p=1695452). A non-exhaustive list of examples follows.


Plagiarism is the act of stealing or using as one's own, the ideas, expression of ideas, or work of someone else without proper acknowledgement and attribution.

Plagiarism includes:

•Not citing written papers, oral presentations, art and music, computer programs, and the ideas of others, whether published or unpublished.

•Not citing online written materials, photographs, artistic works, and images created and posted by others.

•Purposeful omission of quotation marks for direct quotes taken from the oral or written works of others.

•Making changes to the work of others without crediting them for the original work or idea.


Cheating includes taking or receiving answers, information, or academic materials from others when independent work is expected.

Examples of cheating include:

•Copying work from another student or allowing another student to copy from your work (for example, an exam, lab, problem set, or homework assignment meant to be completed independently).

•Using unauthorized sources of information during an exam, quiz, or assignment without instructor permission.

•Asking another person to write a paper, submit an artistic work, or take an exam in your place.

•Obtaining answers to assigned work from an online site or another person when independent work is expected.

•Stealing copies of exams or other academic materials.

•Copying lab work or group work from a team member without contributing to a project.

•Purchasing a paper or artistic work online or from another person with intent to submit it as your own.


Bribery is the offer or acceptance of something of value in order to influence another individual. For example, the exchange of services, money, or goods for an answer to a problem, or a grade on an assignment or course.


Misrepresentation is the act of deceiving a University official to obtain an academic advantage.

Misrepresentation includes:

•Presenting yourself as someone else, either in person, in writing, or online.

•Giving a false excuse for an absence or missed assignment.

•Lying in an attempt to increase your grade.

•An attempt to deceive a University official when confronted with allegations of academic dishonesty.

Conspiracy and Collusion

Conspiracy and collusion include working with others to commit or attempt to commit academic dishonesty.

Examples of conspiracy and collusion include:

•Collaborating with another person online, in writing, or in person on an exam or assignment when independent work is expected.

•Two or more students submitting work that is nearly identical without permission of the instructor.

•Sharing a class assignment with another student when it is meant to be completed independently.

Fabrication and Falsification

Fabrication and falsification include the creation or use of forged, altered, counterfeited, or otherwise misrepresented information.

Examples of fabrication and falsification include:

•Making up data or information for an experiment, research, or report.

•Falsifying a University document in paper or electronic form, such as forging an advisor's signature or changing a grade on an official or unofficial transcript.

•Intentionally providing a false GPA, course grade, or degree on an application.

•Signing the name of another student on an attendance sheet.

•Falsely reporting attendance at a required out-of-class activity that you did not attend (for example, a campus lecture, performance, or off-campus event for credit or extra credit).

Duplicate Submission

Duplicate submission is the act of submitting the same paper for different classes without permission.

Examples of duplicate submission include:

•Submission of the same term paper, artistic work, course assignment, lab report, computer program, or other assignment to more than one class without permission of all instructors.

Improper Use of Electronic Devices

Electronic devices are everywhere in society, but in some academic settings they may be prohibited.

Improper use of electronic devices includes:

•Use of a calculator, phone, computer, tablet, or smart device in class when prohibited.

•Sharing answers on an exam or assignment meant to be completed independently using a calculator or electronic device.

•Recording or photographing part of a course or class activity when prohibited without permission of the instructor.

•Unauthorized electronic transmission of confidential materials such as an exam or the academic records of another student without permission.

Improper Online Behavior

Online behavior should follow the same expectations as face-to-face behavior.

Examples of improper online behavior include:

•Cyber bullying.

•Uploading the intellectual property of another person to a web site without permission and attribution (e.g., a class exam, homework, textbook, term paper, work of art or music).

•Use of a campus network in violation of CU Board of Governors IT Policy 45.

Disruptive Behavior

Disruptive behavior includes any behavior that interferes with the teaching and learning process. It applies to in-seat and online classrooms, as well as behavior on campus and off-campus at University events. 

Disruptive behavior includes:

•Violation of the classroom conduct policy in the Academic Catalog. 

•Blatant disregard for behavioral policies on a course syllabus, in the Academic Catalog, or in a Board of Governors policy.

•Bullying, whether in person, in writing, or online.

•Sabotaging the work of another person.

•Theft or destruction of academic materials or University property.

•Aggressive or threatening behavior towards other students or University officials.

Academic Recovery

Students admitted on a provisional basis to Concord University and students on initial Academic Probation with 60 or fewer earned hours are required to participate in the Academic Momentum Program (AMP), which includes enrollment in UNIV 101. This program gives students the opportunity to strengthen their academic skills and improve their academic records.

Students who fail to earn a passing grade in UNIV 101 may be required to retake the course.

Amending Information

While every effort is made to assure accuracy at the time of printing, Concord University reserves the right to delete, change, or amend the information in this Catalog as necessary.

It is the student's responsibility to realize and comply with current University policies.

Licensure and accreditation regulations may require additional non-published admission requirements in some certificate programs. Candidates in these programs must familiarize themselves with the current admission requirements of the Department which administers these programs.

Class Attendance

Regular class attendance is part of a student's academic obligation at Concord.  Irregular attendance may affect academic performance adversely and is detrimental to the atmosphere of a class.

Illness or other compelling reasons occasionally may make it necessary for a student to be absent from class.  When a student cannot attend a class or laboratory, the student is obliged to notify each instructor involved as soon as possible and provide  an appropriate explanation.  The student must take the initiative both in providing adequate explanation and in satisfying the class attendance policy.

Note:  Extended absence, as the result of illness or other compelling reasons, should be reported to the Office of Student Affairs.

The instructor has considerable discretion with regard to attendance policy.  It is imperative that students attend the first class meeting.  If an instructor has a waiting list and any student does not attend the first class meeting, the student may be dropped from the roll to provide room for students waiting to add the course.  Instructors typically use the first day to establish class policies and orient students to the course.

Absence from class for University approved functions poses a special problem.  Any absence means that a learning situation has been missed.  The lost learning experience may result in reduced performance on exams or in other testing situations.  In choosing to participate in University activities, a student should carefully consider the possible impact of the absence on grades and academic standing in the class.  However, the University does not wish to prohibit student participation in approved activities.  Therefore, instructors are required to excuse the physical absence if the student has notified the instructor and arranged for any compensation work prior to the absence.  The student is responsible for contact instructor(s) to determine how far in advance of the absence such notification and arrangements must be made.

Note:  The activity leader must distribute printed lists of participants.  These lists are for the instructor's information only.  Such a list does not alter the student's responsibility as explained in the previous paragraph.

After appropriate warning and notification to the Office of Student Affairs, an instructor may drop a student with irregular or non-attendance if the instructor has not received a satisfactory explanation from the student.  A written notification to the department chairperson and the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs is also required.  The grade recorded in cases of dismissal for irregular and for non-attendance is a W.

When a student is withdrawn in this manner from all of his or her courses, he or she is no longer classified as a student, and therefore, is not eligible to reside in the residence has or to receive financial aid.

A student who stopped attending classes in a previous semester and consequently received grades of F may request an academic exception to have the Fs changed to Ws.  For instructions on completing an academic exception, please see the policy on Academic Exceptions  .

Classroom Conduct

In classrooms, laboratories, and during any activities that are part of course requirements, students are expected to observe reasonable rules of conduct. Questions and discussions in class on the subject matter of a course will be accepted by any Concord instructor as a proper part of a university course, limited only by allotted time.

Students also are encouraged to consult instructors individually when necessary, either about the subject matter of the course or about their work in the course.

Disruptive behavior in the classroom will not be tolerated. If student conduct makes it difficult to continue the class satisfactorily, the instructor may warn the student of this fact. If objectionable conduct continues, the instructor may dismiss the student from the course with written notification of this action to the department chairperson and the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. Any appeal from such decision must be made to these, beginning with the classroom instructor. The grade recorded in cases of dismissal for conduct is an F.

A student suspended or expelled from the University for unacceptable conduct outside of the classroom shall have a grade of W recorded permanently for all course work during the semester of the suspension or expulsion.

D and F Forgiveness Rule (Academic Forgiveness Policy)

Any undergraduate student who earns a grade of "D" or "F" for a course taken prior to the receipt of a baccalaureate degree, may repeat the course prior to the receipt of the baccalaureate degree and the original (first attempt) grade will be disregarded in GPA calculation.  Only the grade earned when repeated will be used in determining GPA.  However, the original grade will not be deleted from the student's academic record.  Additionally, eight (8) credit hours of original (first attempt) "C" grade upper division coursework (300-400 level) may be repeated with written permission of the Department Chair and College Dean (for the student's declared major) and the Provost.   Forms to request permission to repeat a course with a "C" grade are available in the Registrar's Office.  All repeatable "D," "F," or upper division "C" coursework is capped at 21 credit hours.  The 21 credit hour calculation for academic forgiveness begins fall semester 2018 and applies to all undergraduate students.  Note:  Any failing grade issued as a result of academic dishonesty will not be subject to repeat under the Academic Forgiveness Policy.

Grade Appeal Process

A student has a right to appeal any final grade he or she believes is unfair or inappropriate, within the generally recognized standards of academic freedom and license. Such complaints should be made after the final course grade is posted and within one semester following the semester in which the course was taken. Grade appeals must be made in writing, along with appropriate evidence, to the Dean of the college in which the course resides.  The Dean will investigate the claim, perhaps speaking to the student, the instructor of record, the department chairperson, or others in an attempt to learn all he or she can prior to making a ruling in the matter. The Dean will submit his or her decision in writing to the student, the instructor, and the department chairperson.  The Dean will also arrange with the registrar to alter the student's final course grade should that be determined necessary. Decisions of the Dean in such matters is final.

Inadequate Proficiency in English

In all academic work, students are expected to use standard English in written and oral communication. An instructor from any department who finds the work of a student seriously deficient in English skills may refer the student to the Chairperson of the Department of Humanities. The Chairperson, after evaluation of the referred student, may require additional work of that student without credit.

Inclement Weather Schedule 

  Monday/Wednesday/Friday Classes   Tuesday/Thursday Classes  
  Regular Inclement   Regular Inclement  
  8:00-8:50 10:00-10:40   8:00-9:15 10:00-11:00  
  9:00-9:50 10:45-11:25   9:30-10:45 11:05-12:05  
  10:00-10:50 11:30-12:10   11:00-12:15 12:10-1:10  
  11:00-11:50 12:15-12:55   12:30-1:45 1:15-2:15  
  12:00-12:50 1:00-1:40   2:00-3:15 2:20-3:20  
  1:00-1:50 1:45-2:25   3:30-4:45 3:25-4:25  
  2:00-2:50 2:30-3:10        
  3:00-3:50 3:15-3:55        

Residence Credit

A candidate for a degree from Concord University must have earned a minimum of 36 semester hours of credit while in residence. Sixteen of the last 32 semester hours of study previous to graduation must be done in residence at this University. For students completing three years in the pre-medical, pre-dental, or pre-law curricula, 16 of the last 32 semester hours of study previous to entering professional training must be done in residence. At least nine semester hours credit for courses required for a major, minor, concentration, or teaching field (or specialization) must be earned in residence here. These courses are to be upper division courses, or in some instances, for elementary education specializations, courses designated by the appropriate department chairperson.

Residency Status and Out-of-State Academic Programs

The one exception to residency status for in-state fee purposes is that of individuals approved for enrollment through the Academic Common Market. Currently, the only Academic Common Market program on the Concord campus involves Recreation and Tourism Management majors from the state of Arkansas.

West Virginia residents seeking designated majors not available within West Virginia may be able to attend participating colleges or universities outside the state and pay in-state student fees through the Academic Common Market or other contract programs. Further information is obtainable through the Registrar's Office or the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.

Transfer Credit

The determination of acceptable transfer credit is made by the University after review of the courses offered for transfer and consideration of which of these are equivalent to Concord courses and which may be counted only for elective credit. Grades for all work transferred are recorded as earned. Transfer students should submit other institutions' transcripts at the earliest possible date so that the Concord evaluation of the transfer can be made. Although all credits from regionally accredited junior colleges in college parallel courses are accepted (provided none of the credit was acquired after the student gained junior standing at a four-year college), a maximum of seventy-two semester hours is applicable toward the 120 semester hours required for graduation. Thus, a minimum of 56 semester hours must be completed at a baccalaureate institution. Credit from one of the three following sources is acceptable for transfer to Concord University: a regionally accredited institution; the Army American Council on Education Registry Transcript Systems (AARTS); and, the Sailor/Marine American Council on Education Registry Transcript (SMART). Credit from other sources must receive special permission to be transferred to Concord University. Students transferring from two-year institutions must complete, at Concord, a minimum of fifteen semester hours in the major or teaching field. After transferring, a student must maintain a 2.00 grade average in all courses taken at Concord. Once a student has been admitted to Concord as a transfer student, transfer credit will be accepted only for courses for which prior permission is obtained.

Transfer of Academic Credit Policy

The initial evaluation of transfer credit will be completed on a course-by-course basis referencing the course title, course level, grade received, and/or supporting course descriptions.  Courses required for the major, teaching field, area of emphasis, etc. may be initially accepted as elective credit by the Registrar's Office but will be modified once written approval is granted by the appropriate department chair.  It is the responsibility of the student to provide the necessary evaluation forms and documentation (syllabus for each course in question) to the department chair for the petition review. 

Credit transferred to Concord University from an in-state institution will have an additional level of evaluation based upon the Core Coursework Transfer Agreement (CCTA) - see Registrar's website for agreement details:  http://www.concord.edu/academics/registrar 

Students transferring credit from an out-of-state institution of higher education will be evaluated in a similar manner and the CCTA will serve as a reference document.

Any student denied specific course credit at the department level may petition the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs of Concord University to request a final review at the institutional level.  If the appeal for course credit from an in-state institution is not granted by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, the student then has the right to appeal to the Joint Recommending Committee for Transfer and Articulation at the state level.  Any in-state student wishing to utilize the final appeal process at the state level may contact the Registrar's Office for additional information and forms (registrar@concord.edu or phone 304-384-5236 or 5237).

Transient Credit

Once enrolled, it is expected that a Concord student will do most of his or her course work at Concord. However, students may apply for permission to take work at another regionally-accredited institution. Application must be made in writing to the Registrar, stating the institution, the reason for requesting the work there, and whether the work will be on its campus, on-line, by extension, or by correspondence. The request must include the departmental designation of the course, its number, descriptive title, and credit designation, as listed in the catalog of that institution.

Transient forms are available through the Registrar's Office.

Credit will not be granted for courses taken elsewhere unless permission is granted in advance. Good academic standing (2.0 grade point average) is required for permission to study at another institution.

Permission to take courses elsewhere is not given for any course already taken at Concord, or for certain basic courses required in the student's program of study, without prior approval by the student's major department. Once a student has attained junior standing at Concord, courses may not be taken at a community college for transfer to Concord University.

Concord University cannot assume any responsibility for the transmittal of official notice of completion of courses at other institutions. Students depending upon correspondence credits to complete their graduation requirements are cautioned that Concord has no control over delays which may occur in the grading of correspondence assignments and in the sending of another institution's official transcripts of final grades to the Concord Registrar's Office.

The Registrar and the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs review transient requests.

Weather Policy

As a general policy the University will remain in normal operation during adverse weather conditions. In the event of severe weather conditions, the President may

  1. place classes on inclement weather schedule;
  2. cancel classes before the end of the class day;
  3. cancel classes for an entire day or days;
  4. close the University with notification to the Chancellor of the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.

Individual instructors will establish inclement weather meeting times if a class does not meet at one of the regular times noted above.

The Director of the Beckley Center will determine the status of off-campus classes in Raleigh County. If a decision to cancel classes is made, the media, faculty, and appropriate University offices will be notified.

The late schedule affects classes only. Other University operations are expected to follow normal routines, although the University encourages its employees to use discretion to ensure safety in traveling on weather-affected roadways. The University urges individuals to use their own best judgment in making a decision to commute or not to the campus in adverse or severe weather conditions.

Concord faculty are urged to make attendance policy considerations for the difficulties some commuting students may encounter due to weather conditions and provide opportunities to make up missed work. Students have an obligation to make every safe effort to attend classes, to initiate arrangements for making up missed work, and to understand the occasional commuting difficulties of faculty.

Announcements invoking the late schedule or other options referenced above are aired on area radio and television stations and are sent as text and email messages to those enrolled for this service.

Take note that unless a cancellation announcement is made, classes will be held.