BYU Independent Study - Online Courses
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Course Policies (previously known as "Read Me First")

Click on each of the topics below to view the policies.

Enrollment / Withdrawal

Tuition: Tuition is due upon enrollment.

Purchase Order customers — tuition is determined by the Purchase Order contract.

Withdrawal/Refunds: You may withdraw from your course at any time as long as you have not completed it or requested the final exam. If you withdraw from a course within 60 days of your registration date, you will receive a refund minus the withdrawal processing fee. After 60 days, no refunds will be granted.

Withdrawal Processing Fees:
If you withdraw from a course within 180 days of your registration date, but after 60 days of your registration, you will receive a voucher for financial credit with BYU Independent Study minus the withdrawal processing fee. This voucher must be used within 180 days of your registration date. After 180 days, no refunds or financial credit will be granted.

Status: BYU Independent Study cannot declare full- or part-time enrollment for any student. We are not able to sign any document stating or implying enrollment status.

Materials

Shipping: Materials will be shipped to the address listed in the student’s file unless otherwise specified at the time of enrollment. BYU Independent Study is not responsible for items lost or damaged in the mail. Materials may be replaced at the expense of the student.

Assignments

Paper Courses: Please submit all assignments according to the instructions in your course. Generally, assignments may be submitted online or by e-mail, fax, or mail. Some assignments will be graded immediately upon submission, while those requiring instructor grading should be graded within two weeks.

Always make copies of your assignments before submitting them! Credit will not be given for assignments lost in the mail. We do not accept separate portions of one lesson. Submit your lesson in its entirety when you mail, fax, or e-mail it to us.

In many courses it is possible to resubmit an assignment for a fee. Please refer to your course for further information. If a resubmission is allowed, you will only be permitted one resubmission per lesson. After you have requested the final exam, you may not resubmit any assignments or midcourse exams.

Online Courses: Please submit all assignments online according to the instructions in your course. Some assignments will be graded immediately upon submission, while those requiring instructor grading should be graded within two weeks.

In many courses it is possible to resubmit an assignment for a fee. Please refer to your course for further information. If a resubmission is allowed, you will only be permitted one resubmission per lesson. After you have requested the final exam, you may not resubmit any assignments or midcourse exams.

Teacher-Led Courses: Please submit all assignments online according to the instructions in your course. Some assignments will be graded immediately upon submission, while those requiring instructor grading should be graded within two weeks.

In many courses it is possible to resubmit an assignment for a fee. Please refer to your course for further information. If a resubmission is allowed, you will only be permitted one resubmission per lesson. After you have requested the final exam, you may not resubmit any assignments or midcourse exams.

Plagiarism: Plagiarism is defined as the unauthorized use or close imitation of the language and thoughts of another author and the representation of them as one's own original work. This may also include when a student copies and pastes directly from another source and passes it off as his or her own, or if a student fails to cite a source after loosely summarizing its content in his or her own words.
As determined by your instructor or the BYU Independent Study administration, if evidence of academic misconduct on assignments or exams is established, or if your submitted work is found to be profane or unduly disrespectful of others, the following consequences may apply:

  1. You will fail the lesson
  2. You will fail the lesson and be denied the opportunity to resubmit the lesson
  3. You will fail the lesson and the class
  4. You will fail the lesson, fail the class, and will be ineligible to enroll in a specific course or any of our courses

Exams

Method: All exams are paper-based and must be taken in a proctored setting. BYU Independent Study does not offer exams online.

Proctor: Students must take their exams with a proctor certified at the level of their course or above. All exams for university courses must be proctored by a testing center. Proctors and testing centers must be certified by BYU Independent Study before exams are requested.

BYU Independent Study provides a list of individuals and organizations who have elected to proctor BYU Independent Study exams and have been certified by our office. BYU Independent Study does not guarantee the availability of certified proctors. Students are encouraged to contact proctors prior to requesting exams to verify availability, fees, and other policies required by the proctor.

Accommodations: Accommodations will be granted to students upon submission of the requisite documents. Accommodations requests must be submitted before students request any exams. Accommodations applied to one course do not automatically apply to another. In their requests, students should be specific about which courses need accommodations. In addition, it is the student’s responsibility to notify the Independent Study office if he/she has enrolled in a new course since the original documentation was processed.

Grading: Computer-graded exams will be graded within one business day after being received at BYU Independent Study offices. Exams that require grading by an instructor should be graded within two weeks.  

Exam answers are to be entered onto either the bubble sheet or the written response sheet provided with the exam. Answers not written in pencil on the provided material will not be processed.

Shipping: BYU Independent Study is not responsible for items lost or damaged in the mail. If the exam does not arrive at the BYU Independent Study offices, the student will be required to retake another form of the examination. Exams sent outside the continental United States require international shipping fees.

Deadlines: Exams must be taken and returned within 30 days of being requested. If the exam is not received at our office within the 30-day deadline, a new exam may be sent to the student at his expense.

Final Exam: All coursework must be completed prior to requesting the final exam. No assignment resubmissions are allowed after the final exam has been requested. Final exams must be requested prior to the course expiration date. If available, final exam retakes must be requested within 30 days of the original exam grading date, regardless of course status. Final exam retakes must be taken and returned to BYU Independent Study within 30 days of the retake request.

A course is considered complete once the original final exam and exam retake, if available, have been graded. Grading of the final exam supersedes the course expiration date.

Course Completion

Deadlines: BYU Independent Study requires that all coursework and exams be received by our office three weeks before any and all deadlines requiring course completion. Examples of these deadlines are graduation deadlines, employment application deadlines, graduate school application deadlines, etc.

If you are completing a University Course, please be aware of the following deadlines for BYU semesters during 2013-14 school year:

BYU Semester/Term

Independent Study Deadline

Fall 2013

November 26, 2013

Winter 2014

April 4, 2014

Spring 2014

May 30, 2014

Summer 2014

July 25, 2014



Notice of Course Completion: Notification of course completion will be mailed to the student when the overall course grade is posted.

HS Students: Notification of course completion will be sent to the counselor at your local institution if the ACT code is present in your file when the final grade is posted.

Transcripts

Junior High and High School Students: Once a course is completed, the final grade and course completion date are posted online. Transcripts must be requested through the BYU Independent Study High School Department; a signed transcript request form is required for grades to be released. The form can be found at: http://is.byu.edu/site/courses/ordertrans.cfm.

Please allow one to three business days for processing transcripts being sent by regular mail. Express transcript requests received after noon mountain time will be sent the following business day.

University Students: Courses and corresponding grades are placed on Brigham Young University transcripts in the semester in which they are completed. If a course needs to be completed during a specific semester, all coursework and exams must be submitted to BYU Independent Study three weeks before the student’s deadline. Courses will be available on a Brigham Young University transcript two to three business days after posting of the overall course grades. Transcripts must be requested through the BYU Records Office at:  http://saas.byu.edu/registrar/records/transcripts.php.

Below are the deadlines for BYU semesters during 2013:

BYU Semester/Term

Independent Study Deadline

Fall 2013

November 20, 2013

Winter 2013

April 5, 2013

Spring 2013

May 31, 2013

Summer 2013

July 26, 2013

Course Expiration

Expiration: Course expiration dates are specified within your course record. Expiration dates are effective at midnight on the date of expiration.

Extensions: One three-month course extension may be available for a $20 fee. This option is not available for all courses. If this restriction applies to your course, it will be noted in the course syllabus. The extension option must be processed before the course expiration date. No second extensions are available.

Petitions Process

The Petitions Committee has been established by BYU Independent Study to help students who encounter nonacademic emergencies or situations beyond their control. When these circumstances affect the student's ability to follow established policies, he or she may appeal for exceptions to Independent Study policies.

All petitions must be submitted to Independent Study at is_petitions@byu.edu with all supporting documentation attached. It is the student’s responsibility to obtain and submit supporting information from physicians, counselors, etc. Incomplete petitions will be returned to the student.

How to Petition
  1. Pick up the form at Independent Study at 120 MORC, Provo, UT 84602, or online at Petition Form.
  2. Submit all required information. If the petition is related to medical, clinical, or personal situations, supporting information from doctors, counselors, or other professionals should be submitted with the petition form.
  3. The written statement should explain the circumstances, the time frame in which they occurred, and how they prevented the student from complying with BYU Independent Study policies.
    • If the petition is for an extension of time, please include a specific plan for completion, including dates. Please be aware that additional time in excess of one (1) month from the current course expiration date cannot be granted.
    • All information about the circumstances and the reasons for the petition should be contained in the student’s written statement, since only written information is reviewed in the committee’s decision process.
    • Handwritten statements should be written legibly and be easy to read. Students may attach typewritten statements to the petition form.

How Decisions Are Made
All petitions are reviewed by the Petitions Committee within one business week after submission by the student. It is the mission of this committee to try to balance the needs of BYU Independent Study with the needs of the student. Students are notified of committee decisions by a letter mailed to the address provided by the student on the appeals form. Students are accountable for complying with all policies contained on the BYU Independent Study website, elearn.byu.edu.

Academic Grievance Policy

There may be occasions when a student believes her/his academic work or conduct has been unfairly or inadequately evaluated1 by the faculty.2  Usually such differences of opinion can be amicably resolved informally between the student and teacher. If not, the following procedures are intended to encourage satisfactory resolution of academic grievances with a minimum of formal procedure.
If the course is a university course, please follow the published university process in the undergraduate catalog at http://saas.byu.edu/catalog/2010-2011ucat/GeneralInfo/Records.php. Please send a copy of the written grievance to Independent Study at IS_Petitions@byu.edu

If the course is a high school course, please follow the instructions below:

  1. The grievance must be initiated by the student no later than three months (90 days) from the day the final grade is posted for the course in which the alleged unfair or inadequate evaluation occurred.
  2. The student should initially address the grievance by writing to the instructor to request a review and resolution. This initial communication should be sent to IS_Petitions@byu.edu .
  3. If the instructor is unavailable or the student has a valid reason to believe the matter will not be dealt with fairly or that retribution may result, the student may submit the grievance directly to the Faculty Coordinator at Independent Study at IS_Petitions@byu.edu .
  4. If a grievance addressed to an instructor is not resolved satisfactorily, the student may submit a written request for further review to the Associate Director, Academics within 30 days of the instructor’s decision.
  5. The Associate Director’s decision shall be given in writing to both the student and the Instructor within 30 days of receiving the student's request and all supporting material for review.
  6. If the matter is still unresolved, the student may submit a written request for formal review to the Director of Independent Study within 30 days of the Associate Director’s written decision.
  7. If formal review is requested, the Director shall be assisted in reviewing the grievance by a committee, as described in the following paragraphs.
    1. The Director will appoint a committee of individuals to review the grievance, including other instructors, administrative staff or other individuals. One member of the committee will be appointed to chair and conduct the proceedings, which should take place within 30 days of receiving the student’s request.
    2. In reviewing the grievance, the review committee, the affected student, and the affected instructor are responsible to identify or provide relevant sources of information. The review is intended to be collegial and not adversarial. Accordingly, legal counsel is not allowed to attend or advocate in the review process. Following the review process, the committee will submit a written recommendation to the Director of Independent Study.
    3. The Director will determine the resolution of the grievance and give the decision in writing to the student and faculty member within 10 days. The decision is final and not subject to further appeal.

Notes

  1. Academic evaluations subject to this policy include grading, actions arising from incidents of academic dishonesty, the withholding and/or revocation of a grade for academic reasons, and the withholding of transcripts or special notation on transcripts for academic reasons.
  2. For purposes of this policy, "instructor" means any teacher or other individual authorized by Independent Study to academically evaluate students, or who has a legitimate need to know about the processing and disposition of an academic grievance.

Academic Honor Code

As with all educational programs sponsored by Brigham Young University, a high sense of personal honor and integrity is expected in the completion of BYU Independent Study courses. The assignments are intended to prepare you for the examinations and should be your own work. If evidence of academic dishonesty on assignments is established, or if submitted work is found to be profane or unduly disrespectful of others, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken, which may include the following: rescinding the grade, failing the course, prohibiting re-enrollment in the course, and prohibiting participation in any BYU Independent Study courses.

Nondiscrimination Policy

We are committed to providing products and services free from unlawful discrimination. Unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender, national origin, religion, age, veteran status, and/or disability will not be tolerated.

Additional Teacher-Led Course Policies

Course Discussion Boards: Course instructors are responsible for monitoring and administering the discussion board related to their course. Provided in the course are instructions and guidelines for acceptable and unacceptable discussion board posts. Any posts that are unseemly, profane, or contain solicitations or requests for a student e-mail address, physical address or other personal contact information, are not permitted and will be deleted.

Response and Grading Times: Instructors are expected to respond to student inquiries within two to three business days. Instructors are also expected to post grades for students’ assignments within five business days.

Privacy

FERPA: By an act of Congress, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) protects the privacy of the student's educational records. In compliance with FERPA, the student's Social Security number or Confirmation Number is required before releasing any personally identifiable or educational information to the student, counselors, or parents.

High school students: By supplying your high school's ACT code, you give BYU Independent Study permission to inform your high school of your activity and grades in the course[s]. Please click here to read the Notification of Rights.

Transfer of rights: When the student is 18 years old, or enters a post-secondary institution at any age, the rights under FERPA transfer from the parents to the student. If the student is enrolled in BYU Independent Study’s non-university-level courses and is 18 years old or older or is enrolled in BYU Independent Study’s University courses, regardless of age, educational records will not be released to anyone other than the student. Access to the student’s educational records may be granted to a third party if the student provides signed permission granting a specified person rights to access his or her records. Click here for a printable FERPA permissions form.

Tax Dependency: If the parent can provide tax documentation that the student was claimed as a dependent in the previous income tax year, the parent may have access to the student’s educational records. In addition to the FERPA Permissions Form, Proof of Tax Dependency must be provided each time information is requested from the student's educational records.


Privacy: Brigham Young University respects the privacy of our students and patrons and implements safeguards to protect sensitive personal information and academic records. Under the Family Educational Rights Privacy Act (FERPA), BYU has an obligation to protect student records. Additionally, other laws and regulations require that the University protect sensitive personal information and financial records. University systems require individuals to log in using secure Network Identification (Net ID) and passwords. Sharing of Net IDs and passwords violates confidentiality and degrades the ability of the University to protect secure information.

Among the programs offered by The Division of Continuing Education are programs for children and youth, ages 3-18, which makes personal security of utmost importance. Our systems have recently been updated so our processes for registering participants and providing courses comply with FERPA and other privacy regulations. All participants (or their parent/legal guardian for youth registrations) are required to individually log in so personal, financial, and educational information remains secure and protected. If you have questions about this policy and our commitment to protect our participants, please contact the BYU Continuing Education registrar at 801-422-8925 or toll free at 877-221-6716.