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Academic Policies

The general policies of the GSBS are determined by the Graduate Council and administered by the dean.

Policies may be modified at any time by the Graduate Council. Students should review the Student Policy website at www.hsc.unt.edu/policies/policieslist.cfm for additional policies and procedures concerning their roles as students.

Academic Misconduct

Cheating and plagiarism are types of academic misconduct for which penalties are described and assessed under the Code of Student Conduct and Discipline (see Student Policy website).

The term cheating includes, but is not limited to: (1) use of any unauthorized assistance in taking quizzes, tests, or examinations; (2) dependence upon the aid of sources specifically prohibited by the instructor in writing papers, preparing reports, solving problems or carrying out other assignments; and (3) the acquisition, without permission, of tests or other academic material belonging to a faculty or staff member of UNTHSC.

The term plagiarism includes, but is not limited to, the use, by paraphrase or direct quotation, of the published or unpublished work of another person without full and clear acknowledgment. Plagiarism also includes the unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling of term papers or other academic materials.

Specific penalties can be assigned by a faculty member for certain cases of academic misconduct (including cheating and plagiarism). These penalties include: giving a failing grade for the test or assignment; reducing or changing the grade for the test, assignment or course; requiring additional academic work not required of other students; and assigning a failing grade in the course. Other specific penalties can be recommended by a faculty member to the appropriate administrative/academic authority, including denial of the degree, expulsion from UNTHSC, or revoking of a degree already granted.

All GSBS students are responsible for making themselves aware of the definitions and implications of academic misconduct. For further information on academic misconduct, penalties and appeal procedures, the student should refer to the Code of Student Conduct and Discipline at the policy website.

Academic Standing of Student Officers

A student in the GSBS must be in good academic standing to run for office in any student organization and must remain in good academic standing throughout the term of office, if elected.

Annual Performance Review

Every degree-seeking GSBS student will undergo an annual performance review by the major professor which will be reported to the GSBS administration through the discipline by the graduate advisor. The review process is designed to assist students in meeting discipline expectations and document students' annual progress toward degree.

Appeal Processes

Specific policies and procedures have been established for students seeking to file academic or misconduct appeals. These policies and procedures appear in the Student Policies website at www.hsc.unt.edu/policies/policieslist.cfm.

Advice concerning how to pursue appeals on any other matter can be sought from the Division of Student Affairs.


With the written permission of the instructor and the graduate dean, an individual fully eligible to enroll in the GSBS may sit in a class as an auditor without receiving graduate credit. The auditor's name will not be entered on the class roster and the instructor will not accept any papers, tests or examinations.

Attendance as an auditor may not be used as the basis of a claim for credit in the course. Students who are enrolled for credit may audit classes without payment of additional fees; others pay an auditor's fee as shown in the Tuition and Fee Register.

A person 65 years of age or older may enroll as an auditor and observer without credit and without payment of an audit fee if space is available and if approved by the department chair and the graduate dean. Such enrollment entitles the person to library privileges, but not the use of laboratory equipment and supplies, or health benefits.

Change of Discipline

Any student requesting a change of discipline must be in good academic standing and have approval of the major professor, graduate advisor and chair of both the original and the requested disciplines. Students on academic probation are not allowed to change disciplines. Request for Change of Discipline forms are available on the GSBS Forms and Guidelines site .

Change of Degree Program

Any student requesting a change of degree program must be in good academic standing and have approval of the major professor, graduate advisor and chair of the disciplines. Request for Change of Degree Program forms are available on the GSBS Forms and Guidelines site.

Class Attendance

Regular and punctual class attendance is expected. Although, in general, students are graded on intellectual effort and performance rather than attendance, absences may lower the student's grade where class attendance and class participation are deemed essential by the instructor. In those classes where attendance is considered as part of the grade, the instructor should so inform students at the semester's beginning by a written notice. Any instructor who informs students in writing about the necessity of class attendance may request of the Registrar that a student be dropped from the course with a grade of WF upon the accumulation of the stated number of absences.

If the instructor-initiated drop action falls within the time that the student is eligible to drop with instructor consent and without penalty, the Office of the Registrar notifies the student that a WF will be recorded unless the student initiates the drop procedure, in which case a W will be assigned.

Disciplines and similar academic units have authority to establish a discipline-wide or course-wide policy, providing that the policy is in accord with the above stipulations.

For information regarding absence due to religious observances, visit the policy website at www.hsc.unt.edu/policies/policieslist.cfm.

Concurrent Enrollment at Another Institution

GSBS students must secure written permission from the dean before registering for any course or courses at another institution while registered for any courses at UNTHSC.

Failure to secure the required permission for concurrent enrollment prior to registration at the second institution may cause GSBS to refuse degree credit for the work taken elsewhere. In no case may the combined total of semester hours enrolled for at the two institutions exceed the maximum load permitted to graduate students.

Course Deficiencies

A student whose undergraduate record does not show completion of the courses prerequisite to his/her discipline will be required to make up such deficiencies in a manner prescribed by the discipline or advisory committee.

Courses of Instruction

Normally, lectures meet one hour per week for each semester credit hour (SCH). For the exceptions, the Schedule of Classes will explain meeting times.

Individual courses of instruction are subject to change or withdrawal at any time and may not be offered each semester of every year. Any course may be withdrawn from current offerings if the number of registrants is too small to justify conducting the course.

Course Syllabus

The course syllabus contains specific educational requirements – assignments, evaluations, grading and other conditions of performance – that must be satisfactorily completed in order to receive a passing grade. Modifications to the requirements and procedures of a course may be made when judged necessary to improve instruction or to conform to scholastic regulation of the college.

Students should receive a syllabus no later than the second class meeting of any course. Syllabi will not be distributed for courses in laboratory techniques, individual research, internship practicum, thesis, or dissertation. All other courses must provide students with syllabi that include the following information as appropriate to the course:  required texts, exam dates, lecture topics and assignments for each class meeting, attendance policy, course objectives, explanation of how grades will be determined, and information on contacting the course director. Syllabi must be on file with the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences prior to the first day of the semester.

Enrollment Requirements

To be considered full-time in a long semester, MS students must enroll in 9 SCH while PhD students must enroll in 12 SCH. Enrollment in a total of 6 SCH is considered full-time for the summer.

PhD students who have advanced to candidacy are required to enroll in a minimum of 9 SCH each long semester and 6 SCH each summer semester.

Students (MS and PhD) enrolled prior to Summer 2011 must enroll in a minimum of 6 SCH each semester after advancing to candidacy.

Graduate students may schedule as many as 16 SCH during any long semester or 7 SCH in a summer semester.

Final Examinations

If a final examination is administered, faculty members are expected to schedule it during the final class meeting.

If a final examination is not given in a particular course, the faculty member is expected to use the final examination period for summary, evaluation or other productive purposes.

Students who have as many as three final examinations scheduled on one day may appeal to the graduate dean to reschedule one of those examinations on another day during the final week of the semester.

This page last modified April 1, 2011

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