Health Sciences Department Academic Policies

Health Sciences Department Academic Integrity Policy

In all Health Sciences (HS) courses, students will be fully advised of Northern Arizona University's policy on academic integrity in the course syllabus. The course syllabus will also clearly articulate detailed information about the instructor's interpretations and expectations regarding what constitutes academic integrity, with a special emphasis on plagiarism. Students will also be advised of University penalties for infractions. It is the responsibility of the instructor to clearly articulate his/her policy in the course syllabus. To verify that his/her academic integrity expectations have been clearly articulated in the course syllabus, the instructor may send the course syllabus to the Health Sciences Department Chair for approval prior to the beginning of the semester. The course syllabus--at a minimum--should include the following wording:

Academic dishonesty is a form of misconduct that is subject to disciplinary action under the Student Code of Conduct and includes the following: cheating, fabrication, fraud, facilitating academic dishonesty, and plagiarism.


  • Plagiarism: Any attempt to pass off other's work as your own.
  • Cheating: Any attempt to gain an unfair, hidden advantage over one's fellow students.
  • Fabrication: Any attempt to present information that is not true.
  • Fraud: Any attempt to deceive an instructor or administrative officer of the University.
  • Facilitating Academic Dishonesty: Any attempt to assist an act of academic dishonesty by another individual.


Students engaging in activity meeting the definition of academic dishonesty are subject to one of the penalties listed below. Faculty member reserves the right to assign the penalty based upon his/her analysis of the severity of the offense:


  1. Assign the student extra course work;
  2. Require the assignment or examination to be repeated;
  3. Reduce the grade on the assignment or examination;
  4. Award zero grade on the assignment or examination;
  5. Require the student to drop the course;
  6. Award a failing grade in the course.


For clarification of procedures and available penalties, please refer to the Student Handbook, Appendix G, located at 

If an instructor determines that a student has committed a violation of academic integrity, the instructor MUST report that occurrence to the Office of the Associate Provost for Academic Administration and request information on a previous record of academic dishonesty. Relevant documentation supporting the allegation and a recommendation for penalty should accompany the report. All violations of academic integrity MUST be reported, even if the recommended penalty is minor. This provides a "paper trail" for other instructors if a similar incident occurs in another course. Since it is possible that there may be different viewpoints regarding what constitutes an academic integrity violation and appropriate penalties, it is recommended that the instructor contact the Department Chair or the Associate Provost for Academic Administration to determine an appropriate penalty. Once the penalty is determined, the instructor shall contact the student to advise him/her of the academic integrity violation and the penalty assessed. 

Health Sciences Department Policy for Incompletes

It is the responsibility of the student to provide information to the instructor justifying the assignment of an Incomplete in a course. The student should first contact the Office of Student Life Office, present it with complete documentation of the unusual circumstances that prevent his/her completion of the course (such as illness, death in the family, extremely stressful event), and request the issuance of the "Standard Classes Missed Memorandum." Once the student obtains this Memorandum, he/she may then request an Incomplete from the instructor. Each request for an Incomplete will be individually evaluated based on University policies for Incompletes, the circumstances of the request, and the amount and nature of the work missed. If an Incomplete is approved, the faculty member is required to write a formal contract with the student who takes the Incomplete; this contract shall state what course work remains to be done to complete the course and shall state the deadline. Previously submitted assignments may not be re-done as part of this process. Incomplete forms are available in the Health Sciences Department Office. When the student finishes the coursework, the instructor will change the Incomplete to the appropriate grade. The student must complete all of the assigned work within the time frame determined, or the Incomplete will automatically convert to an "F." 

Health Sciences Department Policy for Petition to Drop a Course After the Withdrawal Deadline

Students sometimes find that they have over-committed themselves or that family and other obligations prevent their successful completion of courses. Should a student find him/herself in this situation, he/she should evaluate his/her individual situation and select the most appropriate action from those outlined below.

Example for Spring 2016

Option 1: Thursday, January 28, 2016 = Last day to drop a class without its appearing on the student's transcript. Students can drop a class any time prior to this date with no record of the class reflected on their transcript.

Option 2: Friday, March 25, 2016 (end of the 9th week of the semester) = Last day to withdraw from a class with a "W" without a formal petition and fee. Students can withdraw from a class any time prior to this date without a petition. A "W" will be recorded on the transcript.

In rare circumstances an instructor will consider a student's request to drop the course past the deadline. It is the responsibility of the student to provide information to the instructor justifying the student's withdrawal from the course. The student should first contact the Office of Student Life, present it with complete documentation of the unusual circumstances that prevent his/her completion of the course (such as illness, death in the family, extremely stressful event), and request the issuance of the "Standard Classes Missed Memorandum." Once the student obtains this Memorandum, he/she may request the instructor approve the late withdrawal.

Please note: The instructor is under no obligation to sign a request to drop the course past the deadline. If the instructor judges the request to be appropriate, the instructor will sign the petition to withdraw after the deadline. The student would then obtain the other required signatures and turn in the petition to the Registrar's Office.

The student should contact the Office of Student Life ( and/or the Registrar's Office ( for more information about this process. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that all necessary forms are completed and submitted to the appropriate offices. To request a "drop past deadline," the student must complete a petition form. This is accessible from the "Forms" link on the Registrar's home page:

Option 3: Grade Replacement. If a student is not eligible for a late withdrawal, he/she may retake the course and grade replace or grade average (if the first grade is a "D" or an "F") depending upon the previous number of units repeated. While the original grade remains on the student's transcript, it is not included in the calculation of the student's grade point average (GPA). Upon successful completion of the course, the new grade is included in the student's grade point average (GPA).

PLEASE NOTE: A failing grade is NOT a sufficient reason to request a "drop past deadline" memorandum. Refer to the Registrar's guidelines on acceptable criteria for dropping a class past the deadline:

Substitutions for HS Specialization courses

If a student has a course that is not a direct equivalency, but it contains the same content, the student may petition to substitute the course.  This is true regardless of where it is taken or whether it is upper or lower division.  HOWEVER, if it is a lower division course (and we accept that the content requirement has been met), the student must take ANOTHER upper division HS course to replace the Specialization hours.  In other words, we accept the fact that they have content knowledge in that area and do not need to repeat the "same" course, but we require another course to "substitute" for that course in the Specialization.   The substituted course must be at the upper division level and must be clearly related to public health.

Residential Students Requesting to Take HS Online Courses

Access to HS web courses is restricted to students who have been accepted into one of the eight Online Health Sciences degree programs.  (Note: Formal acceptance into these programs is required.  The fact that a student is geographically located outside Flagstaff for a semester or more does NOT qualify the student as an Online student.)  Exceptions to this policy are rare and will be considered on a case by case basis.  Exceptions are generally considered only if there is space available in the course—this policy is not to be used to request a capacity override.  To petition for an exception, the student must be able to demonstrate evidence of a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.


  • The advisor receives a written request and documentation (as noted above) from the student.
  • If the student meets the criteria, the advisor will contact the course instructor to request approval on behalf of the student and forward the student’s documentation.
  • Instructors can approve this advisor request, or they can choose to continue to restrict the course to Health Sciences’ Online program students only.

Students Requesting to Change from Residential to Online Program

Due to changes in life circumstances, students enrolled in the residential HS program sometimes want to change to the Online program.  Not all residential HS students meet the criteria for making this change.  The criteria for acceptance into the HS-Online program (as posted on the HS website) are as follows:

The requirements for admission to the Online Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences: Public Health degree program are that you must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  1. A 3.0 GPA in the most recent 30 college credit hours, or
  2. A minimum of three years of work experience as a health professional, or
  3. A minimum of 30 credits of college course work with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above.

If you meet one of the criteria above, please fill out an application for admission to the Online Health Sciences: Public Health program.