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Online Learning Policies

Policies and procedures for online learning & online courses. 

North Central Student Handbook

The North Central Student Handbook provides students with important information and institutional policies with which they must comply. This information includes a section on Student Rights and Responsibilities, and Student Policies and Procedures. Students are responsible for obeying municipal, state and federal laws, as well as North Central policies.

Academic Integrity Policy

North Central holds its students to high standards of academic integrity in all areas of college life, including the distance education environment. Any form of academic dishonesty will not be tolerated and can have serious consequences, including automatic failure in the course and/or dismissal from the college. By taking any form of course assessment, you agree that:

  • You are the person registered in this course who has participated in and will receive academic credit for this class, and will not receive unauthorized assistance from any other person or source during this assessment.

  • Acknowledge that unauthorized sharing of information about an assessment with others is strictly prohibited and could result in serious consequences.

By accessing assessments in a course, you are acknowledging your compliance with North Central’s standards of academic integrity and that any violation will be dealt according to the North Central Academic Dishonesty Procedure.


The most important rule of Netiquette is think before you post or send!

1. Avoid Offending Classmates - Ask yourself whether you would make the same comment to the person’s face.

2. Keep Your Voice Down - USING ALL CAPITAL LETTERS online is the equivalent of yelling.  Instead, use HTML to bold or italicize text in your postings, or use *asterisks* around the text to be emphasized.

3. Avoid Sarcasm & Subtleties - Hearing spoken words, seeing people's faces and bodies while they talk, and reading dialogue on your computer screen can convey substantially different impressions. Keeping this in mind may help you realize that it's sometimes easier to sound insensitive and other people’s feelings or have them miss the point when you're communicating through text only. To counter this, be clear, straightforward, and courteous with your language.

4. Just Wait -Assume any comment you read that sounds abrasive wasn't proofread for tone, and wasn't meant to offend. If you're upset, you might wait a little before posting a too-hasty reply that you'll regret later. Unless the author specifically says he’s angry, assume otherwise and ask for clarification of his intent.

5. Make It Personal - At the end of each posting, sign your name. It also adds a personal feel when responding to an individual if you address him or her by name.

6. Be Positive -It's good to express your opinions in discussions, but don't make disagreements personal. Agree to disagree in your exchanges of information and opinions. Keep your interactions with others friendly, especially when you're getting to know each other.

7. Be Aware of Culture - Be aware of cultural differences. If you suspect classmates might be from other cultures, avoid unexplained references that may not be understood or cause feelings of exclusion.

8. Use Emoticons Sparingly - These little icons can be quite effective in supplying primitive facial expressions to supplement your words. However, again be aware of cultural difference. It might be preferential to use other more direct ways of being sure your intentions are known: for example, by adding phrasing like "just kidding," "no offense intended," or "this is my opinion."

9. Change the Subject Line - Always enter a new subject for each of your postings, even if you are making an additional comment on the same subject as those above yours. Leaving the default subject tells readers nothing about your particular topic. Unique subjects allow classmates to understand the flow of conversations and relocate particular postings without having to open every one.

10. Not Too Little, Not Too Much - One word or single phrase responses can seem curt and rude. Use complete sentences and clearly communicate your meaning. Conversely, postings of multiple screens of text can be overwhelming to read online. Compose offline, edit your musings, and consider making bullet points to aid classmates in getting to your point.

11. What’s It’s About - When replying to a posting, quote the part of the original posting to which you are replying to help classmates understand the context.

12. Spell It Out - With spellcheckers now available as add-ins for most popular Web browsers, there's no excuse for inadvertent typos. Also remember that trendy abbreviated spellings are best left outside of online classrooms.

13. One Final Look - After you compose a posting, take a moment to reread your text before submitting. If it's possible, reading out loud can be especially helpful. One final once-over can identify typos, misstatements, lack of clarity, or an unintended tone.

Material on this site is available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License

North Central Michigan College Privacy Policy

North Central Michigan College is committed to protecting the privacy and personal information of students, staff, and visitors. This privacy policy is provided to inform you of what personally identifiable information might be collected from you when you visit one of North Central’s websites or use contracted online partner services.

Information collected about you

As industry standard practices, North Central’s websites can collect information, such as:

  • Computer and Internet Provider Information: Web servers automatically recognize a user’s domain, internet service provider, web browser and operating system. Servers also log and collect records of page usage. North Central aggregates this non-personally identifiable information for research used to improve site design, delivery, and content.
  • Cookies: To personalize and enhance your experience, some websites use cookies, which are text files that your web browser places on your computer’s hard drive to store your preferences. North Central does not store personally identifiable information within the cookie file.
  • Surveys & Forms: North Central collects information through various online surveys and forms to provide services and help guide improvement efforts. Delivery of online forms and surveys may be offered by third-party providers, but those providers are contractually required to honor North Central’s commitment to privacy, as well as be in compliance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Data collected from surveys may be shared with external third parties in ways that do not compromise privacy.
  • Online payment / e-commerce: North Central websites and its partners may enable the ability to pay for products and services online. North Central requires that these transactions are secure and that any confidential information one provides through the transaction is used solely for the purposes of that transaction, unless an additional use is clearly stated.

How Information is Used

North Central utilizes and protects student and website user information as required by law.

  • Freedom of Information Act (FOIA): As a public institution, some information collected through our website may be subject to release under the provisions of the FOIA. 
  • Directory Information: North Central may publish directory information (such as name, address, and phone number) consistent with FERPA regulations. Students who do not wish for their information to be published in such a directory may contact the Registrar to elect to not have their information published. 
  • Federal and state legislation compliance: In compliance with federal and state legislation, North Central retains the right to release both personally identifiable and collected information to state and federal agencies as required.

Public Forums

North Central may provide public areas for comment, such as discussion forums, chat, social media channels, and message boards. Information a user discloses in such an area may become public information and such information could be logged. North Central encourages users to exercise caution when deciding to disclose personal information in public forums.

Data Protection & Security

North Central has put in place appropriate physical, electronic, and managerial procedures to safeguard against unauthorized access, maintain data security, and correctly use any information collected. Unfortunately, despite these efforts, there is always a risk that third parties may unlawfully intercept or gain access to information. This is a reality associated with all internet use. As a result, North Central cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit, and you transmit all information at your own risk.

Consent to Data Use

By using our web site and provided services, you consent to the collection and use of your information by North Central Michigan College as described in this policy. If this policy is updated, those changes will be posted on this page so you will always be aware of what information is collected, how it is used, and under what circumstances it might be disclosed.

Questions About this Privacy Policy

Questions about this privacy policy, the content or practices of our website or partners,  contact the college at:

North Central Michigan College
1515 Howard Street
Petoskey, MI 49770


North Central Accessibility Statement

In compliance with the Rehabilitation Act of 1973’s Section 504 and 508, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, North Central’s department of Learning Support Services (LSS) provides students with documented disabilities access to professional disability specialists, support staff and specialized services. For more information about services provided or to request an accommodation for a disability, visit Accessibility Services online. To apply for accommodations please contact or call 231-348-6619 with questions or concerns.

Accessibility Services Website