Syllabus Policies

Required RIT Policies

Statement on Academic Adjustments

The Statement on Academic Adjustments is required in your syllabus. The required text is:

RIT is committed to providing academic adjustments to students with disabilities. If you would like to request academic adjustments such as testing modifications due to a disability, please contact the Disability Services Office. Contact information for the DSO and information about how to request adjustments can be found at www.rit.edu/dso. After you receive academic adjustment approval, it is imperative that you contact me as early as possible so that we can work out whatever arrangement is necessary.

Statement on Title IX

Your syllabus must reference RIT’s Title IX policy regarding facultys’ and students’ respective responsibilities and rights. Here is the required Title IX syllabus text.

Academic Integrity Statement

Your syllabus must reference the RIT Honor Code and RIT’s Academic Integrity Policy in an Academic Integrity Statement. 

Example: As an institution of higher learning, RIT expects students to behave honestly and ethically at all times, especially when submitting work for evaluation in conjunction with any course or degree requirement. The Department of [NAME] encourages all students to become familiar with the RIT Honor Code and with RIT's Academic Integrity Policy.

RIT Honor Code
RIT Academic Integrity Policy

Suggested Policy References

Student Work on the Internet

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, or FERPA, prohibits instructors from making students' identities, course work, and educational records public without their consent.

If you intend to post, or ask students to post, their classwork on a website, social media site, blog,  or any other area on the internet that is accessible to the public, you should state that requirement in your syllabus. Include whether or not the material will remain on the internet after the course is completed. You should also have a strategy to accommodate students who do not want to share their classwork publicly.

Example: During this course, you will post assignments on [name and URL], a publicly-accessible website. Your work [will/will not] remain on this site after the end of the course. If you do not wish to make your work public in this way, please contact me during the first week of class to make other arrangements.

Use of Copyrighted Material in Online Courses

Members of the RIT community may take advantage of the TEACH Act provisions to use copyrighted works in online and distance learning courses. The TEACH Act provisions would allow a non-profit educational institution, such as RIT, to use copyrighted works, without the express permission of the creator and without the payment of royalties and/or licensing fees, when certain conditions are met. These are detailed in Section C of the RIT Policies Manual.

To comply with these conditions, faculty using copyrighted material in an online course must make note of this in their syllabus.

Example: Certain materials used in this course are protected by copyright and may not be copied or distributed by students. You can find more information at C03.2 COPYRIGHT POLICY.

Sharing Protected Information on the Internet

In February 2013, many major internet providers implemented the Copyright Alert System to alert users when they are accessing illegal content (usually music, video, or motion pictures). Repeat offenders may receive warnings or a downgrade in service.

To minimize the chances for this to occur in classes where students link to and share internet content, you may want to provide a warning for students.

Example: When sharing copyrighted content on the internet with your classmates, please make sure that you link to a legal source. Repeated access to illegal sources may cause you or your classmates to receive warnings through the Copyright Alert System, as well as possible downgrades in internet service.

Emergencies, Instructional Continuity, and Attendance

You should include statements on your policy if classes are cancelled due to a campus emergency and direct your students to these locations:

Example: In the event of a University-wide emergency, course requirements, classes, deadlines and grading schemes are subject to changes that may include alternative delivery methods, alternative methods of interaction with the instructor, class materials, and/or classmates, a revised attendance policy, and a revised semester calendar and/or grading scheme.

Attendance: Please be as flexible as possible in maintaining instructional continuity for students who may need to be absent from class or request to participate remotely for a period of time due to events such as university sanctioned events, illness, or quarantine/isolation (Q/I). Students should notify you that they will need to be absent and when they anticipate being able to rejoin the class. Per Policy D04.0 – Attendance, students are still responsible for fulfilling normal course requirements during their absence. Students are not required to provide details about or documentation related to health-related absences; however, you may request confirmation of a student’s Q/I status. 

Student Support Availability

Please make sure that students are aware of the extensive support system that is available to them through Student Affairs.

Example: Success in this course depends heavily on your personal health and wellbeing. Recognize that stress is an expected part of the college experience, and it often can be compounded by unexpected setbacks or life changes outside the classroom. Your other instructors and I strongly encourage you to reframe challenges as an unavoidable pathway to success. Reflect on your role in taking care of yourself throughout the term, before the demands of exams and projects reach their peak. Please feel free to reach out to me about any difficulty you may be having that may impact your performance in this course as soon as it occurs and before it becomes unmanageable. In addition to your academic advisor, I strongly encourage you to contact the many other support services on campus that stand ready to assist you. These include the Academic Success Center, College Restoration Program, Disability Services, English Language Center, Higher Education Opportunity Program, Spectrum Support program, and TRiO Support Services. Students can find out about specific services and programs on the Student Affairs Website.

Starfish – RIT's Academic Alert System

In undergraduate courses, it is a good practice to tell students how they are doing in the course as soon as possible so that they may make corrections as needed. For an instructor's guide to Starfish, see Early Alert Instructor Guide

Example: This course participates in the RIT Starfish academic alert system, which is designed to promote student success through communication between students, instructors, and advisors. When I am concerned about a student’s academic performance, I may raise an academic alert to notify the student as well as their advisor(s). If you receive an academic alert email, it is your responsibility to contact me as soon as possible to discuss the issue, its potential impact on your success in this course, and identify resources to help move you forward. For more information about the Starfish system, visit The Starfish Wiki

myCourses Assistance

Because students may require assistance in suing myCourses and other RIT-supported technologies, you should provide this link should they need technology support: Academic Technology Support