Graduate Catalog

Academic Performance and Professional Conduct Policies

Student Professional Conduct Policy

Students are expected to meet the standards for professional conduct as these are described in the appropriate department or program handbook. All students are responsible for reviewing and understanding these standards upon admission to their program of study. The following information provides an overview of the expectations and policies related to student conduct and the student conduct review process for all students in the Graduate School of Education and Counseling. Students are also responsible for reviewing and understanding Lewis & Clark’s student conduct policies, which can be found in the Navigator Student Handbook at this address: http://www.lclark.edu/graduate/student_life/handbook/college_policies/

Standards for Professional Conduct and Academic Integrity

Standards for professional conduct and academic integrity are rooted in the fundamental values of honesty, tolerance, respect, fairness, and the collective pursuit of knowledge. Academic dishonesty or cheating involves the use of any method or technique enabling a student to misrepresent the quality or source of his or her academic study, scholarship, or field practice. Academic dishonesty with respect to written or other types of assignments includes, but is not limited to: failure to acknowledge the ideas or words of another that have consciously been taken from a source, published or unpublished; placing one’s name on papers, reports, or other documents that are the work of another individual, whether published or unpublished; flagrant misuse of the assistance provided by another in the process of completing academic work; submission of the same paper or project for separate courses without prior authorization by the faculty in both courses; fabrication or alteration of data; and knowingly facilitating the academic dishonesty of another. Academic dishonesty with respect to intellectual property includes but is not limited to theft, alteration, or destruction of the academic work of other members of the community, or of the educational resources, materials, or official documents of the institution.

Students in the Graduate School of Education and Counseling are also required to meet the standards of professional conduct appropriate to their field of study. While these standards differ in their details and are further specified in each program handbook, they share the same underlying values of honesty, tolerance, respect, fairness, and the collective pursuit of knowledge. In addition, professional conduct requires that students effectively respond to the particular demands of working in the fields of education and counseling. These include: understanding the appropriate nature and boundaries of relationships with pre-kindergarden through grade 12 students, youth and adult clients, and peers in classes and field placements; fulfilling responsibilities to supervisors and mentors in field placements; working effectively with the faculty and staff of the graduate school; the use of constructive communication in problem solving; the requirements and boundaries of confidentiality; and appropriate sensitivity to the public perception of one’s actions and activities, including the use of social media. Each program will provide additional information regarding the standards of professional conduct in the appropriate field.

Acts of academic dishonesty and professional misconduct are contrary to the mission of Lewis & Clark and constitute a serious breach of trust and expectations for appropriate behavior among community members. When a student violates the requirements of academic integrity or professional conduct, and this breach cannot be effectively addressed through a prescribed course of action within the parameters of the class or field placement, dismissal may be considered. In certain situations where there is cause to believe the level of misconduct brings into question the personal qualities necessary to perform as a scholar or practice as a professional, dismissal from the program may be required. In addition, because each act of misconduct harms the entire community, all individuals—students, faculty, and staff members alike—are responsible for encouraging the integrity of others: by their own example, by confronting individuals they observe committing dishonest acts, and/or by discussing such actions with a faculty member or dean. When any individual violates this community’s standards, Lewis & Clark is committed as a community to take appropriate steps to maintain standards of academic integrity and professional conduct.

Student Professional Conduct Review Process

All students should refer to the appropriate program handbook for additional information concerning program-specific procedures related to student conduct. Students are encouraged to be receptive and responsive to the formative feedback they receive on their work and to be aware of the considerable advantages of working through potential conduct issues when they are first identified. The following general guidelines apply to all students in the Graduate School of Education and Counseling.

In the case of a concern about a student initiated by a faculty member, the course of action will be determined by the seriousness of the charge. As above, faculty are encouraged to work through concerns with students as a first step in resolving any conflict. If the faculty member’s concern regarding the student’s conduct is sufficiently serious to merit more formal review and potential academic or disciplinary action, each program will have a process that includes the following steps:

  1. A student conduct review will be conducted in cases where significant concern has been expressed by a faculty member regarding a student’s conduct or performance in the classroom, at a field site, or in interactions with peers, faculty, staff, or the public in any context.
  2. The faculty member who has identified this concern will request a student conduct review in writing, outlining the nature and significance of the concern. The faculty member will describe prior feedback given to the student, where appropriate, and include any relevant documentation. This request will be submitted to the program director, and copies will be sent to the student, the student’s advisor, and the department chair. The student will be informed of the policies outlined here and in the relevant program handbook. Students will be made aware, through these or other materials, of the possible outcomes of the student conduct review.
  3. The program director will schedule a student conduct review meeting to discuss the concerns raised by the faculty member. The program handbook will provide additional information about the required and discretionary participants in this meeting, but all student conduct review panels will include the following: the student, the student’s advisor or designee, a faculty member who can present the details of the situation or concern, the program director, and a faculty member outside the student’s program. The student may elect to bring one other person to support them; this person can be another student, a faculty member, or a professional from the student’s field placement. The person invited to attend by the student is present for support and may not participate in the discussion. More than one meeting may be required to reach a final decision regarding the outcome of the review. This result will be communicated in writing to the student within three weeks of the meeting. If more than one meeting is required, the result will be communicated in writing within three weeks of the final meeting. If a student refuses to attend the student conduct review meeting, the panel will meet in her or his absence and will retain the authority to make decisions regarding the student’s future in the program.
  4. The possible outcomes of the student conduct review include: a written response from the student indicating her or his understanding of the concern and plan for resolving it; a written plan of assistance that outlines the actions to be taken by the student and the consequences for being unsuccessful in meeting its terms; approval of a leave from the program, pending specific actions taken to address the concerns raised in the student conduct review; and dismissal from the program. Each program handbook will provide additional information regarding the process of review. All written documentation submitted for the review and concerning its outcome will be retained in the student’s file. Any decision to dismiss a student from a program will require the review and written approval of the department chair.
  5. Students may submit a written appeal of the decision made by the student conduct review panel to the relevant department chair within two weeks of the panel’s decision. If no appeal is received during the two weeks following the student conduct review meeting, the recommendation of the panel will be considered accepted by the student. If an appeal is submitted, the department chair will provide written notification of a decision within two weeks of receiving it. Students may submit a written appeal of the department chair’s decision to the dean of the graduate school within two weeks of receiving the department chair’s notification. The dean of the graduate school will provide written notification of the decision regarding the appeal within three weeks of receiving it. The dean’s decision is final.

Satisfactory Academic Progress and Performance Policy

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Students enrolled in degree programs must maintain a B average (3.0) and may not receive any grade lower than a C- in any course and no two grades lower than B- to be considered making satisfactory academic progress. The grade of no credit (NC) counts as a grade below a C- for the purposes of determining satisfactory academic progress. Students in nondegree graduate programs (including license, certificate, and endorsement programs) must maintain a 3.0 GPA to be considered making satisfactory academic progress. Students who do not meet the standards for satisfactory academic progress will be immediately withdrawn from their program and notified of this action.

Grading Policy

Once a grade is recorded, it is permanent. Unless an instructor and the department chair agree to approve a grade change or the grade is successfully appealed, no grade will be changed except to correct a clerical or computational error. In the event the instructor and the department chair agree to approve a grade change or an appeal is granted by the department chair or dean, a Change of Grade form explaining the reason(s) for the change must be submitted to the registrar's office by a member of the faculty. No grade may be changed after one year from the date of issuance. No course level may be changed after a course is graded or the term the course is offered has ended.

Under special circumstances, and only with the approval of the course instructor and the student’s advisor, courses offered only for a grade may be taken on a credit/no credit (CR/NC) basis. Credit will be awarded only if the work is equivalent to a grade of B or better. No more than 10 semester hours of coursework taken on a CR/NC basis may be applied toward the completion of a graduate degree, licensure, or endorsement. This limitation does not apply to required coursework that is offered only on a CR/NC basis.

For other policies related to grades and courses, please see the Registration Policies section of this catalog.

Appealing a Course Grade

If a student has a concern about the final grade given in a course, the student should first attempt to resolve the issue with the instructor in the course. A student’s academic advisor may provide support in this process, clarifying issues and facilitating discussion. If the matter remains unresolved in discussions between the student and faculty member, the student may then elect to meet with the program director. If the student feels the matter has not been satisfactorily resolved at this level, she or he may submit a formal written appeal to the chair of the department. This appeal must be submitted within one month of time at which the final grade is issued. The department chair will respond within three weeks of receiving the appeal. 

Academic Performance Standards

Additional standards regarding academic performance and progress may be specified in program handbooks. These standards may include performance in field placements, constructive response to feedback, growth in skills over time, and/or interactions with supervisors or mentors. These standards may be used to determine whether a student is permitted to advance to the next stage in the program and may be used to make decisions regarding a student’s ability to complete the program. Students should be aware of these additional standards and seek out the support of an advisor or other faculty to ensure their understanding of them.

Students who do not meet program standards for academic performance will be notified by their program director that an academic review panel is to be convened. Program directors, in consultation with the student’s advisor and any other relevant faculty, will convene an academic review panel to determine an appropriate course of action. Students may be given a written plan for improvement or may be dismissed from the program, depending on the circumstances. Once dismissed from a program, a student may not be readmitted to that program, except through timely use of the appeal process described below.

Academic Review Panel and Appeal Process

Program directors will convene an academic review panel in cases where there is a concern that a student is not meeting academic performance standards in the program. Questions about academic performance may include whether a student is ready/able to perform successfully in a practicum, internship, or other field experience; whether a student has met the requirements or prerequisites for moving forward in the program; and whether the student has demonstrated the knowledge, skills, and dispositions for success in the profession.

The program handbook will provide additional information about the required and discretionary participants in this meeting, but all academic review panels are required to include the following (with the understanding that some roles may be held by the same person and that it may be appropriate to invite others as well): the student, the student’s advisor or designee, a faculty member who can present the details of the situation or concern, and the program director. The student may elect to bring one other person for support; this person can be another student, a faculty member, or a professional from the student’s field placement. The person invited to attend by the student is present for support and may not participate in the discussion. The faculty on the panel will act in an advisory capacity to the program director, who will communicate her or his decision in writing to the student within two weeks of the meeting. If no appeal is received during the two weeks following the communication of the decision made by the program director, the decision of the panel will be considered accepted by the student. Any decision to dismiss a student from a program will require the review and written approval of the department chair.

A student may contest decisions related to the outcome of the academic review panel. To appeal any decision that is not dismissal from the program, a student initiates the appeal by submitting a written request to the department chair within two weeks of the panel’s decision. The department chair then has two weeks to respond in writing to the student’s appeal.

In cases where a student wishes to appeal the decision of the department chair, or in cases where the student wishes to appeal a decision to dismiss her or him from the program, a written appeal may be submitted to the dean of the graduate school within two weeks of the chair’s decision. The dean of the Graduate School will provide written notification of the decision regarding the appeal within three weeks of receiving it. The dean’s decision is final.

Advisors

The director of each graduate program is responsible for assigning advisors to students in that program. Advisors assist candidates in planning an official course of study and answer questions about the student's program.

Students are assigned a permanent advisor following admission to graduate study. Before admission, applicants may obtain information and advice in orientation meetings, from a program directors, from the appropriate chair, or from other faculty members.

Each candidate has the responsibility to develop an approved course of study with his or her advisor by soon after being admitted; to stay informed about registration, course schedule changes, and deadlines; and to obtain approval for any changes to the approved course of study.

Requirements for Master's, Educational Specialist, or Doctoral Degrees

These steps apply for all degree concentrations:

  1. Apply for and be granted admission to graduate study. All materials submitted in connection with application for admission become the property of Lewis & Clark.

  2. Design a formal study program. Students must design a formal program of study with a graduate advisor by soon after being admitted to degree status and before registering for further coursework.

  3. Maintain ongoing contact with an advisor. Students should continue to consult their advisor throughout their degree/licensure program.

  4. Complete the approved course of study. Programs of study for master's and educational specialist degrees must be completed within five years of matriculation. Students in the doctoral program have a maximum of six years from the date of admission or three years from Advancement to Candidacy to complete their program.

  5. Apply for degree. Students must complete the degree application according to the schedule outlined in the Applying for Degree Candidacy section of the Registration Policies page. Degree applications are completed online using WebAdvisor.

If progress is unsatisfactory, the student is notified by email and is required to meet with his or her advisor, program director, or department chair to determine appropriate action. Unsatisfactory performance at any time may require additional review with the possibility of dismissal.

Note: All courses applicable to the master's and educational specialist degrees must have been taken within five years prior to and/or five years following admission to the program.

Requirements for Licensure, Endorsement, and Certificate Programs

  1. Apply for and be granted admission to the graduate school. All materials submitted in connection with application for admission become the property of Lewis & Clark.

  2. Design a formal study program. Students must design a formal program of study with a graduate advisor soon after being admitted and before registering for further coursework.

  3. Maintain ongoing contact with an advisor. Students should continue to consult their advisor throughout their program.

  4. Complete the approved course of study. Programs of study for licensure, endorsements, and certificates must be completed within five years of matriculation, except the Continuing Administrator License program, which must be completed within nine years of matriculation. (This includes required subject-area tests if the student intends to apply to the Oregon Teacher Standards and Practices Commission for a license or endorsement.)

If progress is unsatisfactory, the student is notified by mail and is required to meet with his or her advisor, program director, or department chair to determine appropriate action. Unsatisfactory performance at any time may require additional review with the possibility of dismissal.

Obtaining Professional Licenses or Endorsements

Our programs give students the academic preparation they need for a variety of professional licenses, and we may recommend students to licensing boards upon successful completion of a program. Licenses are issued by independent professional organizations.

Once counseling psychology students (except school psychology students—see below) have completed their program of study at Lewis & Clark, they may need to complete additional work (such as internship hours) for licensure eligibility. Counseling psychology students should check with the appropriate professional organization or agency (such as the Oregon Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists). Students may then apply for the license, certificate, or endorsement through the appropriate professional organization or agency.

Once students in teacher education, educational administration, school counseling, and school psychology programs have completed their program of study at Lewis & Clark, they should contact the office of K-12 Career and Licensing Services for information on applying to the Oregon Teacher Standards and Practices for a license or endorsement: www.lclark.edu/graduate/career_and_licensing/k-12.

Modification of Academic Requirements

Students who seek modification of academic requirements may petition the graduate school. Before submitting a petition, the student should meet with his or her advisor to consider ways of fulfilling the requirement without the need for a special petition. A petition form is available from the graduate registrar's office.

Definition of Student Status: Student

A Student is defined as one who has been formally admitted to graduate study leading to a master's, educational specialist, or doctoral degree, or endorsement, licensure, or certificate program.

Definition of Student Status: Special Student

If, for valid reasons, a student is unable to complete an application prior to the deadline, the student may be granted Special Student status.

A Special Student is defined as one of the following:

  1. A student who is not seeking a Lewis & Clark degree or licensure and is taking courses solely for personal or professional enrichment.

  2. A student who is interested in pursuing a Lewis & Clark degree or licensure but has not been formally admitted to graduate study.

Special Students are allowed to enroll for a maximum of nine credits. Enrollment does not guarantee that the student will be admitted to any graduate program or that the coursework taken will be accepted for degree, endorsement, or licensure requirements.

Special Students are not eligible for federal student aid.

Assessment of Student Learning

The Graduate School of Education and Counseling is committed to providing quality education and to assuring that students gain the knowledge and skills necessary to be successful after they graduate. Assessments of student learning provide the information needed to make improvements in program structure, course content, and pedagogy. The assessment process requires the ongoing collection of information from students at the classroom, department, and institution levels. For example, students may be asked to submit samples of their coursework, participate in focus groups, or complete questionnaires assessing the quality of academic services. In addition, graduates may also be asked to participate in focus groups and/or complete surveys assessing the quality of academic services or levels of program satisfaction while enrolled. These activities, and the information they provide, help the graduate school determine the extent to which students and graduates demonstrate competency in their professional fields.

Our unit assessment system contains the following common elements:

  1. Student learning outcomes for graduate programs are clearly communicated and assessed using fair and unbiased instruments.
  2. Faculty and others use assessment information for the purpose of program improvement.
  3. Information about assessment systems and student learning outcomes are reported to designated stakeholders, including the Lewis & Clark College Board of Trustees, the Oregon Teachers and Standards Practice Commission, the Lewis & Clark Education Consortium, and appropriate national accreditation organizations.
  4. Aggregate performance data will not include personally identifying information and student names will be removed from all samples of student work.
  5. In recognition of the evolutionary nature of accountability and assessment processes, the Graduate School of Education and Counseling acknowledges that changes in the assessment system will occur over time. The Graduate School of Education and Counseling will make reasonable efforts to inform students and other stakeholders of these modifications. In no case will changes in the assessment system alter the institution's commitment to preserving the confidentiality of individual student performance data.
  6. The Graduate School of Education and Counseling and its departments conduct satisfaction and other types of surveys before and after students graduate. Students and alumni are strongly encouraged to respond to these surveys so that the information may be used to improve our programs and the education of our future students.