Graduate Students’ Code of Conduct


FVSU encourages student growth and development so that students are able to contribute to society by devoting themselves to respect for the dignity and welfare of self and others.  Students of high academic and personal integrity deal with the public and other professionals in and out of the classroom. They perform in a non-discriminatory manner and take reasonable steps to consult with professionals when they have questions regarding their ethical obligations or professional practice.

Graduate Studies Classroom and Professional Code of Conduct
Practice behavior that is acceptable in the professional workplace and appropriate to your chosen field:

  1. In the learning environment and in written communication, employ language and conduct that are honest, civil, courteous, and responsible
  2. Participate in classroom, lab, or field activities, and participate in groups with whomever you are assigned as team members.
  3. Show respect for the dignity and diversity of individuals, and work on building constructive relationships with instructors and fellow students. (The Golden Rule.)
  4. Avoid disruptive and discourteous behavior such as coming to class late, talking at inappropriate times, reading newspapers in class, or monopolizing class time.
  5. Respect the value of other individuals’ time by submitting work on time, making requests in a timely manner, and not expecting immediate responses to requests.
  6. Speak of your program, fellow students and instructors with the knowledge that what you say may affect the image and thus the value of your degree and your institution.
  7. Follow rules for safety and proper maintenance of equipment and materials.
  8. In addition to practice, professionalism in the workplace and class, graduate students are expected to exhibit attire that is reflective of their chosen career path.

The following codes apply to all graduate students:

FVSU Classroom Code of Conduct and Dress Code

As a means of becoming successful and prepared for the professional world, including internships, graduate or professional school and positions of employment, Fort Valley State University students are expected and required to abide by the following codes.

Individual breaches of codes of conduct or dress codes will be dealt with by the instructor, on a case-by-case basis, based on the severity of the infraction. Punishment can range from being marked “absent” for that day to being dismissed from the class. Severe or repeat infractions may be turned over for appeal.

General Decorum

  1. Students must be able to present their ID cards for inspection. It is recommended that the card be visibly displayed, whether clipped to a waistband or breast pocket or worn on a lanyard.
  2. Students must attend class regularly, missing no more than the allowed number of absences:
  3. Absent 1 hour of class for a 1 credit hour course;
  4. Absent 2 hours of class for a 2 credit hour course;
  5. Absent 3 hours of class for a 3 credit hour course.

Students whose absences exceed the above scale will receive a reduction in their final course averages as determined by the faculty member. Exceptions to this policy on point reduction may be granted by the faculty upon presentation of documentation from the Vice President of Academic Affairs that an official excuse has been granted for the student’s absence. Conditions warranting such an approval include cases involving death in the family, illness of the student or his/her immediate family members or for military duty. It is the student’s responsibility to provide legitimate, official documentation of excused absences to the instructor(s) of the courses involved. Other reasons for absences not covered here must be cleared with the appropriate College Dean.

  1. Students must be on time to class and must remain until dismissed.
  2. Students must prepare for each class meeting by reading assignments and completing any required written work.
  3. Students must meet all deadlines, including those established by the instructor and those set by the University.
  4. Students must never have electronic devices such as cell phones, PDA’s, iPods, or similar items in use during class time unless the instructor explicitly allows them as part of the instructional activities.
  5. Students are expected to act with courtesy and respect to instructors, guests, staff members, and fellow classmates. For example, students should refrain from talking during class while the instructor or another student “has the floor”. Failure to behave with proper courtesy and respect could result in disciplinary action.
  6. Students must not come to class under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  7. Food and drinks are not allowed in the classroom, lecture hall, or lab.

Student Dress Code

Dress must be modest and appropriate for a professional or serious setting.

Ethical behaviors are defined specifically by each professional organization with attention to details that are unique to the profession or the discipline. Some ethical behaviors can be identified among all or most disciplines, however, and these are identified here for students at FVSU.

  1. Academic integrity. Students produce quality academic research and writing without plagiarizing or using the work of others (without proper credit given). Students practice a strict code of honesty related to tests and assignments and display honesty in their academic evaluations and assessments.
  1. Respectful behavior. Students treat others with respect, including faculty and staff, other professionals in the academic and surrounding communities, and their fellow students. Students refrain from behaviors that are sexually harassing, culturally insensitive, or interpersonally inappropriate.
  1. Confidentiality. Students maintain confidentiality of records, correspondence and conversations. Students understand that information given to them personally by others through any form of communication (e.g., verbally, in writing, emails, or text messages) is unique to their situation and within the confines of that relationship, not to be shared with others. (Students understand that messages can have altered meanings when taken out of context.)

Professional behaviors are those in the realm of interpersonal skills, attitudes, and beliefs about personal and professional development. Specific behaviors are identified that will enhance students’ experiences and ultimately determine their success in FVSU Graduate Studies programs.

  1. Professional language. Students learn and utilize standard English, appropriate grammar, and critical thinking and analysis in their writing and verbal communications in order to demonstrate academic proficiency. Students refrain from profanity and improper language by developing higher levels of language usage in order to represent themselves and FVSU as academic successes. Students refrain from malicious gossip, slander or defamation of character against others, including faculty, staff, professionals in the academic and surrounding communities, and their fellow students.
  2. Professional judgment. Students learn and exhibit sound reasoning. Students learn and utilize decision-making and problem-solving skills that allow for self-monitoring and control of their behavior and emotions. Students refrain from loud, abusive, negative, demeaning, sarcastic, inappropriate, combative language in interpersonal interactions with others. Students refrain from emotional outbursts that intimidate or endanger the welfare of others. Students are alert to signs of impairment from their own physical, mental, or emotional problems and seek assistance for problems that reach the level of impairment.
  1. Professional behavior. Students practice thorough preparation for coursework, meet deadlines consistently, report to class on time and remain for the entire class period, honor faculty requests for classroom decorum (such as no cell phone use during class instruction). Students honor the Student code of conduct and comply with ethical standards for FVSU and their discipline. Students accept and use constructive feedback non-defensively and understand that FVSU faculty and student’s value lifelong learning. Students positively interact with others with respect for differing opinions.