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Your Student Record

As part of your first registration, you create your student record. You must provide your full legal name, date of birth, legal sex, native language, e-mail address, and postal mailing address. You are responsible for the accuracy of all biographical and contact information that you provide or another person provides on your behalf, both online and on all paper forms and applications. Honesty in all communications, including self-representation, is a requirement of student enrollment.

The Registrar has the right to cancel a student’s registration, at any point in term, upon discovery of inaccurate biographical or contact information. In addition, submission of fraudulent information can be subject to review by the Administrative Board and may be grounds for disciplinary action.

Your Biographical Information

The name that you provide when registering must match exactly the full legal name printed on your passport or other government-issued photo identification. Please check that your name and biographical information are correct in MyDCE. To report a legal name change, a birth date or Social Security number correction, or changes to legal sex or other biographical information, you must submit a Biographical and Contact Information Changes Form to the Registrar’s Office with acceptable documentation, as described on the form.

Your Contact Information

All critical school and course communications are sent via email.

To protect the privacy and security of your student records, you must provide an email address that is unique and not shared with any other person. Duplicate email addresses will be inactivated. Within two business days of registering, you are eligible to create a unique Harvard email account. Your Harvard email account will remain active throughout your term of enrollment or your degree candidacy. If you wish your Harvard email account to be used for Extension School communications, you must update your contact information in MyDCE.

You are responsible for maintaining accurate contact information (email address, postal address, telephone numbers) with the Extension School.

Your Grades

In pursuing higher education, you are choosing to expand your skills and challenge yourself intellectually. You are here to learn in community and receive constructive feedback from faculty, teaching assistants, and course assistants as well as peers.

Our faculty assess student performance carefully and assign grades fairly. Their feedback is meant to help you achieve to learning goals. If you find a grade disappointing, you are expected to engage with your instructors respectfully, knowing they intend to be constructive.

You may ask faculty members for an explanation of grade or qualitative feedback, but you must be careful not to harass them about their assessment. This includes repeatedly contacting an instructor about a grade, challenging an instructor’s comments, pressuring an instructor to change a grade, and stating that you need a particular grade for a certain purpose, such as to meet a program’s admission requirement.

Any of these behaviors can be considered harassment and must be avoided because they violate our student conduct policy.  Such violations will likely result in disciplinary action.

See Grades for more information on grading policies. 

Your Degree or Premedical Program Application

Harvard Extension School expects that a student’s application to a degree or other Extension program be accurate and complete. Honesty in all forms, including self-representation, is considered a fundamental requirement for degree candidacy.

Occasionally candidates for admission have made inaccurate statements or submitted false materials in connection with their applications. In most cases these misrepresentations are discovered during the admission process, and the application is rejected with notification to the Administrative Board, which may take disciplinary action, including permanent suspension from Harvard Extension School.

If misrepresentations are discovered after a candidate is admitted or a degree has been awarded, dismissal or revocation of the degree will ordinarily result.

Attendance and Participation

Harvard Extension School expects students to be active and engaged participants. We also expect students to behave professionally, treating others with courtesy and respect, refraining from using profanity or socially offensive language.

Students registered in a course for undergraduate or graduate credit are expected to attend all classes or participate online as a distance student, take all exams, and complete and submit all coursework by the stated deadlines from instructional staff or as noted in the course syllabus. Students registered for noncredit are expected to attend and participate in adherence to instructor expectations.

Students are prohibited from using recording devices of any kind in their courses. Students should direct their questions about this policy to the Academic Services office.

Students who are registered in Active Learning Weekend courses, or in online courses with a required on-campus weekend, must attend the entire three-day weekend to earn credit for those courses. (See course descriptions.)

Participation in Courses and Sections Using Web Conferencing

Students are expected to treat web-conference class meetings as if attending class on campus and refrain from any behaviors that could disrupt class. Students are expected to behave professionally, treating others with courtesy and respect. Students should not use profanity or socially offensive language and are required to wear appropriate clothing and avoid inappropriate surroundings.

Students must have and use a camera and microphone when attending web-conference class meetings unless otherwise specified by the instructor.

Students may not join a class while driving or riding in a car. Students are expected to join from a suitable, quiet location, with a device that permits full participation in the class activities.

Many courses include activities that cannot adequately be performed on a mobile device.

COVID-19 Conduct in the Community: Participation in On-Campus Courses and Activities

Harvard Extension School aims to enable student learning and provide a safe place for students to learn and thrive. As such, the community expectations related to COVID-19, outlined in full under COVID-19 Updates, represent our individual and shared responsibility for safe practices among all members of the Harvard Extension School community.

Violation of any COVID-19 protocol will be considered a serious violation and will be addressed by the Office of Student Affairs (OSA).

Failure to adhere to these expectations may result in the revocation of student privileges, including your ability to access the Harvard campus and to participate in the Harvard Extension School experience. You may also be withdrawn from Harvard Extension School if the University determines that you are unable to meet the expectations of your course(s) and program.

Publishing or Distributing Course Materials

Students may not post, publish, sell, or otherwise publicly distribute course materials without the written permission of the course instructor. Such materials include, but are not limited to, the following: lecture notes, lecture slides, video, or audio recordings, assignments, problem sets, examinations, other students’ work, and answer keys.

Students who sell, post, publish, or distribute course materials without written permission, whether for the purposes of soliciting answers or otherwise, may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including requirement to withdraw from the Extension School.

Further, students may not make video or audio recordings of class sessions for their own use without written permission of the instructor.

Submission of Written Work

Students are responsible for ensuring that required written work is submitted and received on time. It is their responsibility to submit work according to instructors’ requirements and obtain proof that the submission has been delivered successfully. This includes work that is submitted in person or by postal mail, e-mail, or an electronic drop box.

Please note that submitting the “wrong document” or “the wrong version of the document” is not grounds for an extension of time, regrading, or any form of re-consideration, nor is it an acceptable defense if plagiarism is detected. Students are responsible for the version of the work that they submit.

Late work may be submitted only with instructor approval and according to instructor policies. Adding or changing courses after registration does not warrant an exception to this policy.

Permission to Engage our Community in Research

All research projects in which students, staff, faculty or other members of our community are invited to participate as subjects, whether for survey or other types of scholarly research, must be approved in advance by Academic Services and in most cases, the Committee on the Use of Human Subjects in Research. 

Exclusion From a Course

A student who is consistently not prepared for class, repeatedly fails to attend class or participate online, and whose gross neglect of work is disruptive to the progress of instruction may, after written warning by the instructor, be excluded from the course. The instructor’s warning will specify the steps the student must take to be allowed to continue in the course.

If it is before the drop deadline, the student may voluntarily drop the course as an alternative to exclusion. If it is before the withdrawal deadline the student may voluntarily withdraw from the course for a WD or WN grade as an alternative to exclusion, but may no longer attend or participate. A student who is excluded from a course is prohibited from continuing with it in any way, including attending classes, participating online, taking exams, and submitting work.

The student is assigned the permanent notation EXD (excluded from course), which is equivalent to a failing grade and earns no credit for the course. A student who is excluded from a course is not eligible for a tuition refund for that course.

Administrative Withdrawal

Administrative Withdrawal is an action taken by the Extension School to remove a student from their course or program. The HES policy on administrative withdrawal is listed below.

A student may be administratively withdrawn from the Extension School in the following circumstances (which may be without warning, if determined to be necessary by the School):

  1. Alleged criminal behavior: The student has been arrested on allegations of serious criminal behavior, or has been formally charged by law enforcement authorities with such behavior;
  2. Disruption/Risk to the community: In the School’s judgment, the student’s conduct may have violated a disciplinary rule of the School and the student’s continued presence would pose a significant risk to the safety of any person or a serious disruption to the educational environment of the Harvard community;
  3. Medical circumstances: (a) The student’s behavior poses a direct threat to the health or safety of any person, or has seriously disrupted others in the student’s community or environment; and (b) either the student’s threatening, self-destructive, or disruptive behavior is determined to be the result of a medical condition or the student has refused to cooperate with efforts by Harvard University Health Services (HUHS) or other health care providers to determine the cause of the behavior. The decision to administratively withdraw a student for health related reasons is made in consultation with the Accessibility Services Office (ASO) or HUHS and based on the best available objective medical evidence (which may consider information from the student’s current and/or former health care providers, if made available by the student), after an individualized assessment of all of the pertinent factors, such as: the nature of the student’s conduct; the nature, duration and severity of the risk; the likelihood of potential injury; and whether reasonable modifications of policies, practices or procedures will mitigate the risk. However, reasonable modifications do not include changes that would fundamentally alter the academic program or unduly burden the School’s resources or staffing capabilities;
  4. The student has not provided medical documentation as proof of required immunizations.
    Before administratively withdrawing a student, the Dean of Student Policy and Governance ordinarily will consult with the Administrative Board and other officers of the University (including the Director of the ASO, as appropriate). The student will be informed of the decision in writing and may request reconsideration by the dean of the Extension School, or by the Administrative Board. A student who is administratively withdrawn will be assigned an interim or permanent grade of WA (administrative withdrawal). Administrative withdrawal is not a disciplinary action; however, an incident that gives rise to administrative withdrawal may subsequently result in disciplinary action. Any student who has been administratively withdrawn may not register for Harvard Extension or Summer School courses and must remain away from Harvard if so instructed by the Extension School. The student must also forfeit tuition and fees. Extension School degree or premedical program candidates who are administratively withdrawn will be administratively withdrawn from their programs.

Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment

Harvard University has adopted a new Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment Policy (“University Policy”) as well as new Procedures for Handling Complaints Involving Students Pursuant to the [University’s] Sexual and Gender-Based Harassment Policy (“University Procedures”). The University Policy applies to all Harvard students, faculty, staff, Harvard appointees, and third parties. The University Procedures govern allegations of sexual and gender-based harassment involving Harvard students, including undergraduate students in the College, graduate students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (“GSAS”), and both Extension School and Summer School students in the Division of Continuing Education (“DCE”).

A comprehensive review of FAS policy and procedures will be undertaken by a committee representing members from all major units within the FAS over the course of the academic year 2014-2015. An Interim Policy and Interim Procedures will be followed until the final version of FAS policy and procedures has been adopted by the Faculty. To the extent any existing DCE policies and procedures interfere with compliance with the Interim Policy and Procedures, application of such policies and procedures shall be suspended until adoption of the Final Policy.

As defined in the University Policy and Interim Policy, sexual harassment is unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, including unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal, graphic, or physical conduct of a sexual nature, when:

  1. Submission to or rejection of such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a condition of an individual’s employment or academic standing or is used as the basis for employment decisions or for academic evaluation, grades, or advancement (quid pro quo); or
  2. Such conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive that it interferes with or limits a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s education or work programs or activities (hostile environment).

Harvard Extension School does not tolerate any form of sexual harassment. Students, instructors, or staff who engage in sexual harassment may face discipline.

There are many resources, both confidential and private and within the University and outside, that may be helpful if a student has been subject to sexual or gender-based harassment or has been accused of sexual or gender-based harassment. The resources can be found at the end of the Interim Policy and Procedures. In addition, students with questions or concerns about sexual harassment, including sexual violence, should contact DCE’s Title IX Coordinator or the University Title IX Officer, also listed in the resources section. The Title IX Coordinator or Officer can discuss with you your options and make sure you are fully supported.

Through the Title IX website, you can connect with timely and confidential counseling, explore filing a complaint, contact specially trained 24/7 emergency services, and learn about engaging interim measures—academic, workplace, housing, or other support services—to help.

Rights and Regulations

For information about the federal and state guidelines that Harvard Extension School—and all students—must comply with, see Rights and Regulations.