Academic Policies and General Regulations
Students of VBC are expected to stay informed of the requirements of the curriculum in which they are enrolled. Students are also expected to be knowledgeable about the academic policies and general regulations of the College. The College’s faculty and staff work closely with students to help meet individual or special needs in order to work with students who are experiencing extenuating circumstances.
Academic Honesty Policy
As members of the Virginia Business College community, we value honor and integrity in all that we do and, particularly, in our academic pursuits. Therefore, any action that involves one’s presenting the work of another as his or her own is a violation of the Academic Honesty Policy.
The following offenses constitute academic integrity violations at Virginia Business College:
Giving or receiving unauthorized assistance on a test, exam, or assignment.
Examples include: Copying from the exam of another student in the class or allowing another student to copy from your exam or paper. Obtaining, through theft or otherwise, a copy of the exam prior to the date of the test or using a cheat sheet. Unauthorized collaboration on an assignment.
Presenting the work of others written, oral, or creative as if it were one’s own.
Examples include: Heavily paraphrasing or presenting ideas drawn from an uncited source, submitting purchased or borrowed papers or works produced by another as one’s own or allowing others to submit your work as their own.
Misrepresentation of the Truth
Actively or passively misleading an instructor or other College official regarding one’s academic performance.
Examples include: Forging or falsifying academic documents or records. Misrepresenting one’s academic performance, history, or achievements in order to gain advantage. Failing to give a truthful answer when questioned about an academic infraction or purposefully providing false information in order to gain an advantage; e.g., a false excuse to take a make-up exam, to submit a late assignment, or to be excused from a class. Knowingly providing false information for another also constitutes a misrepresentation of the truth.
Misuse of Electronic Resources
Using information (other than common knowledge or known facts) obtained electronically without properly documenting or citing sources, or purposely presenting such information as one’s own is a violation of the Academic Honesty Policy. The works and ideas of others presented electronically are subject to the same copyright protection as written or recorded text.
The College maintains that regular class attendance is essential to student learning, retention of knowledge, and interactive experiences. It is the responsibility of the student to attend classes regularly and to keep up coursework. Faculty may take class participation into account when grading and list an attendance policy in the syllabus. It is the student’s responsibility to be knowledgeable of the attendance policies of each course.
Virginia Business College offers both seat-based instruction and online course delivery methods. The online courses allow for students to realize their educational goals through the reduction of barriers of time, place, and space. Online courses earn the same credit and maintain the same quality and standards as traditional classroom courses. Successful online learners are highly motivated individuals who are determined and confident of their academic abilities. Moreover, they are comfortable working in an independent learning environment while actively participating in the learning process. Students enrolling in online courses pay regular tuition and fees, have access to all students services, and study under the college’s rules and regulations. Students considering an online course should be comfortable using e-mail, word processing, and internet browsers.
Virginia Business College defines a grievance as any claim raised by a student alleging violations of VBC’s policies or procedures including, but not limited to, inappropriate, discriminatory, harassing, or violent conduct by a faculty member, staff member, other student, or any other individual present on campus. Virginia Business College takes the concerns and grievances of its students seriously and will provide a prompt response to all written complaints. Students will be treated fairly and expeditiously without fear of coercion, harassment, intimidation, or retaliation from the College or its employees as a result of the grievance. Students are encouraged to address the issue directly with the student, faculty member, staff member, or senior administration involved in order to seek resolution prior to filing a formal written student complaint. It is the goal of VBC that written grievances will be resolved within a period not to exceed 30 days; however, the time period for resolving grievances will depend largely on the facts and circumstances at issue and may be expanded where necessary and appropriate to reach a resolution. VBC’’s Grievance Policy is not intended to replace those policies and procedures pertaining to grade appeals or academic integrity violations.
If you would like to request the Student Grievance Form, please contact the Office of Student Affairs.
If the College fails to resolve the complaint to the student’s satisfaction, students have the right to contact the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. To submit a complaint to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, visit their website at www.schev.edu and complete the Student Complaint Form.
Any student who believes he/she has received an unfair grade may appeal the grade/decision. A grade appeal should be initiated within 30 days from the date the grade was issued. The appeal should be in writing. The grade appeal process is as follows:
- Appeal to the instructor. Upon receiving the written grade appeal, the instructor will review and/or investigate the claim and respond to the appeal, in writing, within five college working days. If the students feels that the issue is still unresolved, the student can appeal to the next level (Dean of Instruction) within five days after receiving the decision.
- Appeal to the Dean of Instruction. Upon receiving an appeal, the Dean of Instruction will review and/or investigate the matter. The Dean will respond to the appeal, in writing, within five college working days. If the student feels the issue is still unresolved, the student can appeal to the next level (Vice President for Instruction and Student Services) within five days after receiving the decision.
- Appeal to the Vice President for Instruction and Student Services. Upon receiving an appeal, the Vice President for Instruction and Student Services will review and/or investigate the matter. The Vice President will respond to the appeal, in writing within five college working days. The decision of the Vice President is final.
Note: Grade appeals should be moved forward in a timely manner. However, in the event a student appeals a grade that prevents progression in a program, the student will be allowed to enroll and attend the following semester pending the outcome of the appeal.
Virginia Business College allows transfer of credit for students from accredited post-secondary institutions and military schools provided the courses represent collegiate course work and meet the following conditions:
- The course is required for graduation at Virginia Business College.
- The course was passed with a “C” or better.
- The course closely parallels the content and competencies of the course it replaces at Virginia Business College.
Following guidelines approved the various academic departments, transfer credit is awarded. The awarding of military credit is based on recommendations in the Guide to Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Services, published by the American Council on Education. A maximum of 50 percent of degree requirements is transferrable from all sources.
Transfer credit courses are not used in the computation of the student’s grade point average in his/her program at Virginia Business College. A candidate for a degree must take a minimum of 30 percent of his/her major courses (excluding credit by exam) at Virginia Business College.
Minimum Course Work Requirements
In order for a degree to be awarded from the Virginia Business college, a minimum of 30 percent of the course work must be taken at the College. Furthermore, 30 percent of the courses must come from the major courses in the degree.
Credit by Exam
Based on some unique experience, students who believe they are competent in a course may ask the department head for credit by exam (CE). A nonrefundable $100 fee will be charged and students will be given credit for the course if they respond correctly to at least 85 percent of the items on the test. A student may challenge a particular course only once. If students do not respond correctly to at 85 percent of the items on the test, they must register for the course, pay tuition, and complete the requirements for the course in order to receive credit. A maximum of 30 percent of the student’s program of study may be awarded on this basis.
When students enroll and pay for tuition for a course and then decide to challenge the course by requesting a credit by exam, they must complete the credit by exam prior to the end of the drop/add period. Exceptions to this procedure must be approved by the Vice President for Instruction and Student Services.
Credit by Credential
In cases where the learning outcomes of current, industry-earned credentials align with the learning outcomes of a course(s), academic credit may be awarded.
Academic credit may be awarded for adequately documented and validated industry-recognized credentials. These credentials must be approved by the subject matter experts based on content and outcomes. This credit must be approved by the department head and the Dean of Instruction. Students should contact the department head to determine if a credential qualifies for academic credit. A maximum of 30 percent of the student’s program of study may be awarded on this basis.
Termination of Enrollment
The College reserves the right to terminate the enrollment of any student who cannot live according to the regulations of the institution or who is unwilling to accept the responsibilities as a citizen of the college community. Such action will be taken only after careful deliberation and consultation with all parties who possess information pertinent to the situation under consideration.
Leave of Absence Policy
Currently enrolled students may request a Leave of Absence from Virginia Business College.
In the case of a prolonged illness or accident, death in the family, or other special circumstances that make attendance impossible or impractical, a leave of absence may be granted to the student if requested in writing by the student or designee. No monetary charges or accumulated absences may be assessed to the student during a leave of absence. The College does not treat a leave of absence as a withdrawal if it is an approved leave of absence. The student mu complete a “Leave of Absence Request Form” that provides the reason for the leave of absence and the expected date to return. This form can be obtained from the Dean of Enrollment Management and Student Services. The leave of absence shall not exceed 180 days in any 12-month period. The student must submit the completed from to the Dean of Enrollment Management and Student Services. The Dean will approve or deny the request and communicate the decision to the student.
The College will not impose additional charges to the student as a result of the leave of absence. Furthermore, upon the student’s return from the leave of absence, the student will be permitted to complete the course work missed during the absence.
A student who leaves for medical or mental health reasons must provide documentation that the issue has either been resolved to a course of treatment has been prescribed and that the student is cleared to return to the College by his or her doctor or health care provider.
If a student does not resume attendance on or before the end of an approved leave of absence, the College will treat the student as a withdrawal and the date that the leave of absence was approved will be considered the last day of attendance for refund purposes.
A student’s academic progress will be evaluated at the end of each semester to determine if a student is making satisfactory progress toward completion of their degree. Academic standards require that a student maintain a 2.0 GPA to continue without being place on academic probation or suspension. Any student carrying less than a 2.0 cumulative GPA at the end of a semester will be subject to one semester’s financial assistance probation immediately following the infracted semester which follow the same guidelines for maintaining academic standards.
Please see details below:
Level 1 Probation (Warning): Degree seeking students performing below a 2.0 grade point average in the previous semester will be placed on academic probation. A student on academic probation will work with his/her advisor to develop an academic plan and/or will be directed into specialized coursework. (A “Warning” does not appear on the student’s transcript.)
Level 2 Probation: Degree seeking students who have not attained a 2.0 grade point average for two consecutive terms will be required to review and modify their academic plans with their advisor. Additionally, they may be required to limit their semester course load. (A “Probations” notation appears on the student’s transcript.)
Probationary students who have not attained a 2.0 grade point average for three consecutive terms and have a cumulative GPA below 2.0 will be suspended for one semester. (A “Suspension” notation appears on the student’s transcript.)
Incomplete courses are treated as a grade of “F” until they are completed and do figure into the student’s GPA. If a student drops below a 2.0 because of an incomplete but will be completing the course in the following semester, the student will be placed on probation but it will be noted that reevaluation will take place upon completion of the course.
Maintenance of a 2.0 GPA requires completion of the total semester hours required in the curriculum with an average grade of “C” or higher (Grade-Point Average of 2.0). The minimum requirement for graduation is 125 semester hours passed with an average of “C” or 2.0 earned to graduate.
A student will need to have completed two semesters per year of a full time (15 hours minimum) schedule while maintaining a 2.0 GPA to be considered on track for completion of their program.
Repeating a Course
Courses may be repeated one time in order to improve the course grade as well as positively impact the student’s GPA. If a course is repeated, the higher grade of the two will be taken and used in the processing of the student’s GPA. This is the GPA that will be used to evaluate the student for satisfactory progress. If a student drops below a 2.0 and chooses to repeat a course to positively impact his or her GPA, the student will be allowed one semester of probation to reevaluate the repeated course and its impact.
Change in Student Status
The change from a full-time student to a part-time student (which can only occur during the add period) is not considered to be a Withdrawal from College, Student switching to part-time status during or before the add/drop class period will need to consult the Business Office to determine if an adjustment is necessary to your cost of attendance. Likewise, students moving from part-time to full-time will need to see the Business Office to determine the cost of attendance.
The official academic record is maintained for each student in the Registrar’s Office. The academic record reflects the unabridged academic history of the student at the institution and is part of the school’s permanent records during and after the student’s period of attendance. A student or alumnus may obtain a transcript of his/her permanent record by sending a request to the Registrar. A fee of five dollars will be charged for each official copy. Transcripts cannot be released for a student who owes a balance in the Business Office.
Virginia Business College complies with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, 1974, as amended, and requires written authorization for release of transcripts and confidential information. Under the provisions of this act, students may review their record and challenge the accuracy of their records according to procedures established by the College.
The name of any full-time student who earns a semester grade-point average of 3.75 or higher will be placed on the President’s List, which is prepared at the end of each semester. An appropriate notation of this honor will be made on the student’s permanent academic record.
The name of any full-time student who earns a semester grade-point average of 3.5 or higher will be placed on the Dean’s List, which is prepared at the end of each semester. An appropriate notation of this honor will be made on the student’s permanent academic record.
Each concentration or track has a required internship in the program of study. This typically occurs in the last semester of your studies. The internship allows you to apply the knowledge you have gained in the classroom to the world of work. The internship is a 4 semester hour course and is 12 hours per week of contact. Typically, you will be placed in an internship in our region and in an area that closely aligns to your concentration. This is a learning experience and you will not be used as a replacement for a regular employee. You may or may not be paid for your internship. Your internship will be coordinated and monitored by your advisor to ensure that the expected learning outcomes are achieved.