Course Policies

Academic Integrity

This course follows the Humboldt State University guidelines for academic integrity. Students are responsible for knowing the policy regarding academic honesty: Academic Honesty Policy.

Academic dishonesty is a severe breach of trust upon which the success of this course depends. As such, this course maintains a zero tolerance policy for any violations of academic integrity. Students who violate Humboldt State University’s academic honesty policy will receive a failing grade in the course and may be held in violation of the University’s code of conduct.

Students with Disabilities

I am dedicated to helping accommodate students with disabilities and I have designed this course with ADA compliance in mind. If there are additional disability-related accommodations needed, students should contact the Student Disability Resource Center in House 71, 826-4678 (voice) or 826-5392 (TDD). Some accommodations may take up to several weeks to arrange. Student Disability Resource Center Website.

Names and Genders

The roster of students enrolled in this course are provided by the Office of the Registrar and include your name as it appears on your official Humboldt State University student file. This, however, may not be the name that you want to be addressed by. Please advise the instructor of your preferred name or gender pronoun, as early in the semester as possible in order that changes made be made to the class records.

You’ll find more background information and answers to frequently asked questions on the Preferred Name Usage page on the ITS website.

Military Personnel

Veterans and currently serving military personnel and/or spouses with unique circumstances (4th, upcoming deployments, drill/duty requirements, disabilities, VA appointments, etc.) are welcome and encouraged to communicate these, in advance if possible, to the instructor in the case that special arrangements need to be made.

Inclement Weather

In case of weather-related delays at the University, this online course will proceed as planned. Your instructor will inform you if there are any extenuating circumstances regarding content or activity due dates in the course due to weather delays. If you are affected by a weather-related emergency, please contact your instructor at the earliest possible time to make special arrangements.


Though there are regular meeting times, attendance will typically only be taken during the first two weeks of classes. Due to the high demand, students that do not submit required work or miss class during the first two weeks of the semester will be dropped automatically.

Assignment Due Dates

Always check the HSU Canvas Learning Management System for specific due dates. Students may also check due dates using the interactive calendar on Canvas.  Please be sure to track due dates carefully.

Meeting Minimum Requirements

Minimum requirements represent the minimum amount of work needed to earn a grade. Students who submit incomplete work, or do not meet the minimum requirements regarding length and content, will be given a zero grade for the assignment.

Meeting Minimum Word Count Requirements

Most writing assignments require a certain length and will include a minimum word count. The main body text of the document determines the word count calculation. Extra elements, such as a title page, name, date, headers, footers, a table of contents, bibliography, etc., do not count towards the final word count calculation. The instructor will make the final determination when calculating the word count for a writing assignment submission.

Writing assignments that do not meet the minimum word count will receive a 0 grade.

Students may be tempted to submit assignments that do not meet the minimum word count or present work that barely addresses the requirements by a narrow margin. By not meeting the requirements or by skimming the bottom edge of the word count, students risk not receiving credit for their work. To remedy this, students should always expand upon their thoughts and ideas in order to exceed the minimum by a large safety margin.
For more information, review the section Submit More than the Minimum Work to Get an A under Keys to Success.

Late Policies and Soft Deadlines

All due dates are considered soft deadlines until the last week of instruction.

The last week of instruction is the week before final exams. For 8-week courses, the last week of instruction is week 8.

This means you can still turn in assignments after the due date without a late penalty. There are some exceptions to this rule.

  • Discussion Forums: Only earn maximum points for posts that are submitted before the due date. Fewer points are awarded as time goes on.
  • Final Project: Cannot be turned it late
  • Final Exam: Cannot be turned in late

Problems with your internet access or other technical issues are not valid excuses for late, missing, or incomplete coursework.

The final project and final exam cannot be made up or turned in late. No assignments will be accepted after the last week of instruction, which is the week before final exams. For 8-week courses, the last week of instruction is week 8.

Exceptions to the late policy:

Exceptions to the late policy will be made for:

  • Students with compelling, life-threatening medical emergencies resulting in extended hospitalization (Documentation is required)
  • Veterans and currently serving military personnel and/or spouses with unique circumstances (see details under course policies)
  • Weather-related emergencies (see details under course policies)

Extra Credit

At various time during the course, students may have the opportunity to complete extra credit assignments. However, there is no guarantee that extra credit assignments will be available.

 Please remember that extra credit is a privilege, not a right.

  Incomplete Grade Requests

Incompletes are only approved under extreme, extenuating circumstances relating to medical reasons or military service. Reason must include either of the following:

  • Students with compelling, life-threatening medical emergencies resulting in extended hospitalization (Documentation is required)
  • Veterans and currently serving military personnel and/or spouses with unique circumstances (see details under course policies)

Humboldt State E-mail Accounts

All official communications from the instructor are sent to the students Humboldt State University email accounts. Be sure to check your HSU email account regularly so that you do not miss any important information.

Please do not use the Canvas mail system to contact the instructor.

Canvas Announcements

From time to time, class announcements will be sent out via the HSU Canvas Learning Management System. It is the students’ responsibility to make sure their personal settings in Canvas are set to receive email notifications about these announcements.

Course Copyright

All course materials students receive or to which students have online access, are protected by copyright laws. Students may use course materials and make copies for their use as needed, but unauthorized distribution and uploading of materials without the instructor’s express permission is strictly prohibited.

Students who engage in the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials may be held in violation of the University’s Code of Conduct, and liable under Federal and State laws.


The Geospatial Institute website will occasionally be updated to improve the quality of your experience. In addition, the specifics of this Course Syllabus can be changed at any time, and you will be responsible for abiding by any such changes. Significant changes to the syllabus will be communicated to you via Canvas announcements.