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  A of The Community & Technical Colleges


 
WashingtonOnline Student Handbook
updated 1-25-05

Contractual Liability Statement
Mission Statement
Acceptable Use Policy and Privacy Statement for the WashingtonOnline Web Site
Student Services Policies and Procedures
Instruction Policies and Procedures
WAOL Sexual Offender Notification Policy
Statement of Library Services
Diversity Statement
Definition of Directory Information
Nondiscrimination Statement
Voluntary Disclosure of Social Security Number



Contractual Liability Statement

The provisions of this student handbook do not constitute a contract, express or implied, between the WashingtonOnline and any prospective student, student, student's family, faculty or staff member. The WashingtonOnline reserves the right to change the policies, procedures, rules, regulations, and information in the handbook at any time. This handbook is a general information publication only, and it is not intended to nor does it contain all regulations that relate to students.
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Mission Statement

The mission of the WashingtonOnline is to facilitate new collaborations among colleges in order to improve the educational system of Washington State for students who would otherwise not have educational opportunities. Under the management of the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges, the WashingtonOnline will increase capacity and access to anytime anywhere learning through online delivery, support online learners by providing comprehensive online student services, support colleges offering online instruction, and support faculty and staff who serve online learners. Using modern technology, the VC continually develops systems of coordination and services.
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Acceptable Use Policy and Privacy Statement for the WashingtonOnline Web Site

This section describes the privacy policy regarding use of the Washington Online Web site and information received about students during visits to the Web site. The amount and type of information received depends on how students use the site.
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Limitation on Scope of Content

The WashingtonOnline web site contains information regarding WashingtonOnline , the community and technical colleges of Washington State, and their education and training services. All pricing information referred to in the site is in U.S. dollars.
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No Representation or Warranty


The WashingtonOnline reserves the right to modify the information contained in the site at any time without notice. While WashingtonOnline makes all reasonable efforts to insure that all material on this site is correct, accuracy cannot be guaranteed and WashingtonOnline does not assume any responsibility for the accuracy, completeness or authenticity of any information contained on the site.

The site and all information and materials contained therein, is provided to users "as is" without warranty of any kind. This site may contain hypertext links to other World Wide Web sites, which are completely independent of the site. WashingtonOnline makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy, completeness or authenticity of the information contained in any such hypertext link, and any hypertext link to another person or entity shall not in any manner be construed as endorsement by WashingtonOnline of such person's or entity's World Wide Web site, products or services. Students and other users link to any other off-site pages or other sites at their own risk.

WashingtonOnline cannot guarantee confidential use of this site. WashingtonOnline shall not be responsible for any harm that the student or any person may suffer as a result of a breach of confidentiality in respect to the student's use of this site or any information transmitted to this site.
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Normal Web Site Usage

Users may access the WashingtonOnline Web site to access education/training service information or use the online tools (search, etc.) without revealing any personal information. The only information collected and stored during normal Web site usage is the referring Web site, the pages requested and the date and time of those requests.

This information is used to generate statistics and measure site activity to improve the usefulness of user visits. During normal Web site usage, the site does not collect or store personally identifiable information such as name, mailing address, e-mail address, phone number or social security number. However, when a student logs in to the site to access password-protected services or information, that student is thereby providing permission for the WashingtonOnline to store any and all of the above information.
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Collection of Personally Identifiable Information


There are instances where WashingtonOnline requests personally identifiable information to provide the web site visitor a service. This information, such as name, mailing address, e-mail address, possibly additional information, is collected and stored in a manner appropriate to the nature of the data by WashingtonOnline and is used to fulfill the request. WashingtonOnline makes every effort to insure the secure collection and transmission of sensitive user information using industry accepted data collection and encryption methodologies such as SSL (Secure Sockets Layer). The information provided by users is used by WashingtonOnline to improve the services provided and will not be released to anyone without the student's express permission.
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Use of Cookies

Cookies are pieces of information that a Web site transfers to an individual's hard drive for record-keeping purposes to track site and user activity. The use of cookies is an industry standard and they are found at most major web sites. By showing how and when visitors use the site, cookies help WashingtonOnline to better track site usage. Most browsers are initially set to accept cookies. Users can set their Web browser to refuse cookies or to alert you when cookies are being sent. However, it is possible that some parts of the site will not function properly if cookies are not accepted.
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Privacy

WashingtonOnline has created this privacy statement in order to demonstrate our firm commitment to privacy. The following discloses our information gathering and dissemination practices for the WashingtonOnline Web site.

The WashingtonOnline Web site uses your IP address to help diagnose problems with our server, and to administer our Web site. Your IP address is used to help identify the student and the student's schedule builder and to gather demographic information.

The WashingtonOnline Web site registration form requires users to provide contact information (like name and e-mail address), unique identifiers (like student identification number), financial information (like account or credit card numbers), and demographic information (like zip code). The WashingtonOnline Web site uses customer contact information from the registration form to send the student information about the WashingtonOnline . The contact information is also used to contact the student when necessary. Financial information that is collected is used to collect for tuitions and services. Unique identifiers (such as student ID numbers) are collected to verify the student's identity, for use as account numbers in the record system, and for other purposes. Demographic and profile data is also collected at our site. The WashingtonOnline Web site uses this data to tailor the student's experience at the site, showing them content specific to the student, and displaying the content according to his/her preferences.

This site contains links to other sites. WashingtonOnline is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of such Web sites.
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Public Forums

The WashingtonOnline Web site makes chat rooms, forums, threaded discussions, message boards, and/or news groups available to its users. Students should remember that any information that is disclosed in these areas becomes public information and students will be encouraged to exercise caution when deciding to disclose personal information.
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Security

The WashingtonOnline Web site has security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse and alteration of the information under its control.
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Guidelines for Underage Students

At which time a user's underage status is determined, the WashingtonOnline will:
1. NOT collect online contact information without prior parental consent or parental notification, which will include an opportunity for the parent to prevent use of the information and participation in the activity. Without prior parental consent, online information will only be used to respond directly to the request of the underage student and will not be used for other purposes without prior parental consent
2. NOT collect personally identifiable offline contact information without prior parental consent
3. NOT distribute to third parties any personally identifiable information with out prior parental consent
4. NOT give the ability to publicly post or otherwise distribute personally identifiable contact information without prior parental consent
5. NOT entice by the prospect of a special game, prize or other activity, to divulge more information than is needed to participate in the activity
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Advertising

WashingtonOnline recognizes the value and potential of advertising on the Internet and therefore reserves the right to display advertising on the WashingtonOnline Web site. However, copy which is unethical, misleading, extravagant, challenging, questionable in character, in bad taste, detrimental to public health or interest, otherwise inappropriate or incompatible with the character of the WashingtonOnline Web site or that does not meet with the approval of the Federal Trade Commission, will be rejected or excluded.
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Password

When a student enters his/her unique WashingtonOnline identification number, and enters a password, this combination will serve as the student's signature.
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Student Rights and Responsibilities

Students served by the WashingtonOnline will follow the policies and procedures that govern student conduct, disciplinary procedures and procedures for resolving conflicts regarding student conduct which are in place at the enrolling college. WashingtonOnline students are responsible for being familiar with the student rights and responsibilities and code of conduct of the enrolling college(s).

Jurisdiction and authority for discipline of students registered through the Washington Online will rest with the enrolling college, however administrators and faculty of the teaching college and/or the WashingtonOnline staff may be included in investigations prior to final decisions regarding a discipline situation. All appeals will be handled according to the policies of the enrolling college.
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Instructional Policies and Procedures for the WashingtonOnline

Definition of a WashingtonOnline Class

A WashingtonOnline Class is any section of any course offered by any college in the consortium that meets the following criteria:
· Uses the WashingtonOnline enrollment management system,
· Uses the course management environment supported by WashingtonOnline , regardless of the ownership of the course materials, and
· Is delivered asynchronously.
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Sex Offender Notification Policy

Students served through WashingtonOnline may have occasion to experience the Sex Offender Notification Procedure. This procedure could include the posting of information, including picture and name of a registered sex offender, to online classes electronically. The purpose of the Sex Offender Notification Procedure is to respond to the enrollment or presence of a convicted sex offender within the WashintonOnline State Community and Technical Colleges system, including all WashingtonOnline courses, with minimum interruption to each online class community. Jurisdiction and authority for the dissemination of information concerning registered sex offenders served through WashingtonOnline will rest with the enrolling college. All questions and concerns will be handled according to the policies of the enrolling college. (See your enrolling campus policies.)
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Instructor Policies

· Instructors who teach WashingtonOnline courses must meet the standard qualifications for their field according to the policies of the colleges that hire them.
· Colleges that hire instructors to teach classes that have shared enrollment with other colleges must make available to WashingtonOnline information on those instructors.
· Instructors are governed by the policies and procedures of the colleges that write their contracts to teach WashingtonOnline courses.
· Colleges that hire instructors to teach shared courses must meet all accreditation standards.
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Curriculum Courses and Programs

Each WashingtonOnline course will be adopted by each enrolling college using the established institutional program approval mechanisms for that college. By enrolling students in the course, the college takes responsibility for the curriculum.

WashingtonOnline course are developed so that students will be involved in a variety of activities that involve interactive exchanges among other students and between the student and the teacher. This interactivity will be accomplished in one or more of the following ways:
1. Online discussion, recorded lecture, and/or distributed orientation sessions
2. Either synchronous or asynchronous chat rooms
3. Threaded discussions
4. Listservs in which questions or notices will be posted by any participant and automatically sent to all participant mailboxes.
5. E-mail communications among students and between students and faculty.

Outcomes and assessment methods in WashingtonOnline courses will be detailed in observable, measurable and achievable terms. The learning design, delivery structure and course design will be consistent with the intended learning outcomes.

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Evaluation and Assessment

· WashingtonOnline will use or provide evaluation tools that will measure student learning outcomes, student retention, and student and faculty satisfaction.
· WashingtonOnline courses will be listed and transcripted in the same way any other credit course is listed and transcripted at each enrolling institution.
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Learning Resources

· Colleges enrolling students in WashingtonOnline courses have agreed to share responsibility with the WashingtonOnline to provide library services to online students.
· WashingtonOnline will provide uniform access to bibliographic and periodical databases; individual colleges will ensure that students receive materials and assistance as needed.
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Grading Policies

· Instructors in WashingtonOnline shared courses will use the WashingtonOnline Grading Policy and meet the deadlines for grade submission as set by WashingtonOnline
· Grade disputes will be governed by the policies of the college where the student is enrolled.
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Statement of Library Services

PROVIDING LIBRARY/MEDIA SERVICES FOR DISTANCE LEARNING STUDENTS AND FACULTY
Library Media Directors Council
Washington State Community and Technical Colleges

In 1999, the Commission on Colleges of the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges revised accreditation standards with a new emphasis on distance learning and on each college's expanded responsibility to distant learners. This new language includes the following statement:

"The Institution ensures that students have access to and can effectively use appropriate library resources" (Standard 2.6.j).

The Library Media Directors Council offers the following guidelines to assist Washington community and technical colleges in developing services in support of distance learning and in compliance with the associated standards:

· Community and technical colleges are required to provide library media instruction, resources, and services to distant learners that are analogous to those provided to on?campus students and instructors. · The college that enrolls the student is responsible for compliance with standard 2.6.j. · Students and faculty involved in distance learning will typically require non?traditional services that necessitate a dedicated effort to achieve compliance with this standard.

INSTRUCTION, SERVICES AND RESOURCES TO BE PROVIDED
· Equitable access to information resources. This includes:
        Educating users to effectively locate, evaluate, and manage information
        Providing access to catalogs and indexes of the Library Media Centers' collections
        Providing access to electronic resources
        Delivering books, videos, copies of articles, and other physical materials promptly
        Facilitating loan of materials from other libraries
· Collaboration between librarians and course instructors. This includes:
        Integrating information literacy and research abilities into the course curriculum
        Developing the services required for a course
        Identifying the resources required for student success in the course
· Reference service to all students and faculty
· Subject and literature searches on course topics
· Equitable access to equipment and media production support
· Systematic performance assessment
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Diversity Statement

The WashingtonOnline is committed to ensuring that every member of our learning community feels welcome and included. We do not condone harassment, discrimination or exclusion of anyone who chooses to learn and work in our community.
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Definition of Directory Information

Students may withhold disclosure of directory information under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 by giving written notice. Students should print out, complete, and mail in the Non-Disclosure of Directory Information Form, available on the WashingtonOnline web site. If a student does not complete a form, the college can disclose the following information: name, e-mail address, date of attendance, enrolling college(s).
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Nondiscrimination Statement


The WashingtonOnline complies with all federal rules and regulations against discrimination, and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age, sexual orientation or handicap/disability. This holds true for all students who are interested in participating in educational programs as well as staff and faculty.
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Voluntary Disclosure of Social Security Number


Your social security number is confidential and, under a federal law called the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act, the college will protect it from unauthorized use and/or disclosure. In compliance with state/federal requirements, disclosure may be authorized for the purposes of state and federal financial aid, Hope/Lifetime Learning tax credits, academic transcripts, assessment or accountability research.
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