Online Education Policies

Education at NSU is built on a fundamental commitment to academic quality. To deliver a BlendFlex and online education that maintains the rigorous academic standards and quality, the Halmos College of Arts and Sciences (HCAS) has developed a series of policies.

Online education policies apply to all faculty and staff engaged in the delivery of BlendFlex or online education courses or programs, and students registering for, enrolled in, and receiving credit for BlendFlex online education courses or programs.

BlendFlex Policies

The NSU BlendFlex model is intended to provide flexibility for students and faculty returning to campus. The following HCAS policies have been developed to help implement this model in the most efficient way possible.

  • Course Attendance
1. Students planning to attend class in person must notify the professor no later than the first day of class. Sharing this information with the student’s instructor is a crucial part of allowing the instructor to ensure that the class is in compliance with NSU classroom capacity guidelines. Once the student is assigned a specific in-class rotation schedule, they may not switch and attend class on days other than those on the student’s schedule. Doing this could endanger the health of faculty and students in the class if the number of people in the room is not in compliance with NSU classroom capacity guidelines.

2. If the student elects to attend class via Zoom and would then like to begin attending in person, the student must notify the instructor of this intention and wait to be assigned an attendance schedule before coming to class. The instructor will have to ensure that the room in which the class is scheduled can accommodate an additional student. If it cannot, the student will not be able to begin attending class in person.

3. If the student has elected to attend class in person but because they are not feeling well or for another reason wish to attend a couple classes virtually, they may do so. If the student would like to permanently switch to attending class via Zoom, they must let the instructor know. This will enable the instructor to make the most efficient decisions about the class rotation schedule.

  • Course Technology
1. Students must take responsibility for ensuring they have the appropriate devices as well as Internet access that supports virtual class participation. Instructors are not trained to assist with student technology issues. Please visit for technological support. If students are unable to connect to Zoom for the class or the Zoom connection fails during class, they must email the instructor immediately.

  • Recording Policies
    1. Class content throughout these courses may be recorded in accordance with the NSU Class Recording Policy. If class content is recorded, these recordings will be made available to students registered for the course as a supplement to the classroom experience. Recordings will be made available to all students who were registered to attend the live offering of the class, regardless of a students’ section or discipline, or whether the student is participating in the course online. If recordings are intended to be accessible to students or third parties who were not registered for the live offering of the class, students’ personally identifiable information will be removed or redacted from the recording, unless (1) their written consent to such disclosure was previously provided, or (2) the disclosure is permissible in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”).

    2. Students are prohibited from recording audio or video or taking photographs in classrooms without prior permission from the instructor or pursuant to an approved disability accommodation, and from reproducing, sharing, or disseminating classroom recordings to individuals not taking the course. Students found engaging in such conduct will be in breach of the Student Code of Conduct and subject to disciplinary action.

  • Course Quizzes and Examinations

    1. Online quizzes and exams will use a lockdown browser and Respondus or other proctoring methodologies where applicable. Both a webcam and functional electronic device are required. The device used to access Canvas must have the appropriate capability to complete the testing. Contact the help desk ( for any technology and/or connectivity issues that arise. Before tests and quizzes begin, the student should ensure that the technology is working properly.

Online Policies

Online courses have rules, just like our classrooms. Please be respectful of these guidelines so that our classes can run smoothly, and we can make the most of the time we have together.

  1. Online Etiquette
A key distinguishing feature of an online course is that communication occurs solely via the written word. Because of this, the body language voice tone and instantaneous listener feedback of the traditional classroom are all absent. These facts need to be taken into consideration both when contributing messages to a discussion and when reading them. Keep in mind the following points:

a) Respect others and their opinions. In online learning students from various backgrounds come together to learn. It is important to respect their feelings and opinions though they may differ from your own.

b) Consider others’ privacy. Ask for permission if you want to forward someone’s email messages to third parties. Keep in mind that all private email is considered copyrighted by the original author.

c) Pick the right tone. Since we depend on the written word in online learning, it is especially important to choose the right words to get your meaning across. For example, sarcasm is harder to detect when you read the words rather than hearing them.

d) Avoid inappropriate material. Distribution of pornographic material will result in disciplinary action.

e) Be forgiving. If someone states something that you find offensive, mention this directly to the instructor. Remember that the person contributing to the discussion might be new to this form of communication. What you find offensive may quite possibly have been unintended and can best be cleared up by the instructor.

f) Think before you hit the send button. Think carefully about the content of your message before contributing it. Once sent to the group there is no taking it back. Grammar and spelling errors reflect on you and your audience might not be able to decode misspelled words or poorly constructed sentences.

g) Brevity is best. Be as concise as possible when contributing to a discussion. Your points might be missed if hidden in a flood of text.

h) Stick to the point. Contributions to a discussion should stick to the subject. Don’t waste others’ time by going off on irrelevant tangents.
i) Do not type in all caps. Typing in caps is considered shouting or screaming online. Various studies on the topic also reflect that it is more difficult and takes longer to read text that is typed in all caps.

j) Frivolous email. Don’t forward jokes, “chain letters,” or unimportant email to other students without their permission. Not only does it fill up their mailboxes but may offend people who do not share the same sense of humor or who are tired of these types of email.

2. Dress like you would in a regular class.

3. Be fully present and engaged in our sessions. Online learning, by necessity, requires more effort on your part. We have limited time together, and so it's important that you're engaging in whatever we are doing. This is the time your instructor can find out if you need help, can teach you new things, and can have you collaborate with each other with guidance. Don't squander this time.

4. Be prepared for our sessions. If asked whether you to have something done before class, it's more important than ever that you have done it. Your instructor doesn’t have enough time to wait for you to read an article or to push things back a day because you aren’t ready.