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Student Rights and Responsibilities

Student rights include the opportunity to pursue higher education; freedom to exercise the rights of citizenship, association, inquiry, and expression; and privacy and confidentiality in counseling relationships, health care, financial matters, and matters of record.

Students will have the right of voting representation on all recommendations to the President on such matters as academic standards, student activities and curricula. Most importantly, students have the right to quality education. This includes, but is not limited to, competent instruction, assistance in overcoming educational, cultural, emotional, and economic disadvantages which hinder the educational process, and fair and equal treatment in such areas as instruction, evaluation, and services by faculty, staff, students and administrators. Students have the right to receive in writing from faculty members during the first week of classes a brief course description, requirements, and a specific list of information and techniques which the student is expected to acquire. Also, what grading system and attendance policy will be utilized. Students will also have the right to procedural due process in grievance and disciplinary hearings. Student responsibilities include knowledge of and compliance with directives, regulations, and laws as established by the Department of Higher Education, the Board of Trustees, the College, the student government, and the duly constituted civil authorities. The goal of the statement of student rights and responsibilities is to provide an atmosphere for sound intellectual and academic development.

In accordance with the Student Right to Know Act (Title 1 of Public Law 101-542), the graduation rates of degree-seeking, full-time students are available to all current or prospective students. Student Right to Know



Cape Cod Community College complies with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) (Buckley Amendment) which governs access to and release of information contained in student educational records. Students have the right to review their educational records and seek correction of errors they may find in their records. Students have the right to file written complaints with the U.S. Department of Education, Family Policy Compliance Office, concerning alleged violations of this act. Release of Educational Records: Personally identifiable information may be released under certain circumstances, as provided by law. These include but are not limited to the following:

  • College personnel may have limited access to student records for legitimate educational or administrative purposes.
  • Confidential student records may be released pursuant to a court subpoena. However, the Registrar shall seek professional judgment in determining which information to release and shall so notify the student in writing prior to releasing the requested information.
  • Medical and counseling records are different from educational records, and access is more limited. Such records will not be released without the student’s prior consent except as provided by law.
  • Information regarding the student, including educational records, may be released to parents of students who are claimed as dependents on their income tax returns.
  • A log or record will be kept for all students documenting release of that student’s records. No entry in the record need be made if access is provided by federal or state law.
  • The College may refuse to release transcripts for such reasons as unpaid financial obligations to the College.
  • The College may refuse to release any personally identifiable information, the disclosure of which may constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

Students seeking additional information regarding their rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act should contact the Registrar’s Office or the Vice President of Academic and Students Affairs Office.

Cape Cod Community College has designated certain types of information as directory information. This includes the student’s name, home town, earned degrees or certificates, and academic honors. Students may restrict release of this information, if they wish, and this data will not be released except as authorized by law. Requests to restrict the release of directory information shall be made in writing to the Registrar. The College assumes that failure of any student to do so indicates approval for release of the information indicated above.

Notwithstanding the College’s definition of directory information, the Department of Defense, pursuant to the Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act of 1998, identifies the following student information as directory information: student names, addresses, and telephone listings; and if known, student ages, levels of education, major. If an eligible student chooses not to exercise his/her aforementioned right to refuse to permit the College to designate some or all of those types of information about the student as directory information, the College will release to the Department of Defense, or an agency thereof, that student information which the Department of Defense has designated as directory information. This may result in the nonconsensual release of students’ personally identifiable information by the College to the Department of Defense.

When student information is released pursuant to the Department of Defense request, notice of the request and release of student information in accordance therewith, will be posted in a conspicuous location in the College Registrar’s Office for the period of one academic year. All requests for student directory information shall be made in writing to the Registrar who shall review the request for compliance with all state and federal laws and regulations. The College will not release any student information over the phone or to persons making inquiry in person.

The act affords students certain rights with respect to their education records:

  • The right to inspect and review the student’s education records within 45 days of the day the College receives a request for access. Students should submit to the Registrar, written requests that identify the record(s) they wish to inspect. The College official will make arrangements for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected. If the College official to whom the request was submitted does not maintain the records, that official shall advise the student of the correct official to whom the request should be addressed.
  • The right to request the amendment of the student’s education records that the student believes is inaccurate or misleading. Students may ask the College to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should write the College official responsible for the record, clearly identify the part of the record they want changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If the College decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the College will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of his or her right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the right to a hearing.
  • The right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception, which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is defined as a person employed by the College in an administrative, supervisory, academic, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit and health staff); a person or company with whom the College has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
  • Upon request, the College discloses education records without consent to officials of another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll. (NOTE: FERPA requires an institution to make a reasonable attempt to notify the student of the records request unless the institution states in its annual notification that it intends to forward records on request.)
  • The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by the College to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:
    Family Policy Compliance Office
    U.S. Department of Education
    400 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
    Washington, DC 20202-4605

The complete documents of FERPA and the Buckley Amendment are on file in the Office of the Registrar. These may be reviewed at any time during regular business hours of College operation upon request.

Under the Massachusetts General Law, 105 CMR 220.600, in order to be registered at an institution of higher learning, every (1) full-time (12 credits or more) undergraduate or graduate student and (2) every full-time or part-time undergraduate or graduate student in a health science program who is in contact with patients, must present a physician's certificate that such student has received the following immunizations:

  1. The Hepatitis B vaccine series (3 doses over 6 months).
  2. Two doses of live Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccine(s) (one month apart); birth before 1957 in U.S. is acceptable for college students, except health science students.
  3. Two doses of live Varicella vaccine (one month apart); birth before 1980 in U.S. is acceptable for college students, except health science students.
  4. Tdap - a single dose of Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis) will be required if it has been more than five years since the last dose of Td (Tetanus, Diphtheria).
  5. One dose of meningococcal vaccine (MenACWY) for students 21 years and younger administered on or after the 16th birthday.
    NOTE: Beginning Fall of 2018, all newly enrolled full-time students 21 years of age and younger will be required to show documentation of a dose of MenACWY vaccine administered on or after their 16th birthday. Students may submit a medical or religious exemption to meningococcal vaccine, or sign a waiver indicating they review the meningococcal information sheet and choose to waive receipt of meningococcal vaccine.

These requirements of the Massachusetts General Law 105 CMR 220.600, shall not apply where:

  1. the student provides written documentation that he or she meets the standards for medical or religious exemption set forth in M.G.L.c.76, §15C;
  2. the student provides appropriate documentation, including a copy of a school immunization record, indicating receipt of the required immunizations; or
  3. in the case of measles, mumps, rubella, varicella and hepatitis B, the student presents laboratory evidence of immunity.

Students may be registered on the condition that the required immunizations be obtained within 30 days of registration.

Failure to provide the required immunization records may prevent you from receiving your grades, registering for classes, adding or dropping a class, or receiving your transcripts.


  1. The student health insurance plan covers immunizations. Check your policy for details.
  2. A blood test (called a titre) can be used as proof of immunity to the required immunizations. Most insurances do not cover the cost of these lab tests.

* All students matriculated into health programs (Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Technology, Medical Assisting, Medical Interpreter, Nursing, Paramedic, Tri-level Nurse Aide) have specific health and immunization requirements and may have additional requirements related to clinical placements.

For additional information, Immunization FAQ, and downloadable forms, go to Student Immunization Records.

Information pertaining to CORI/SORI is available here.

See also: Information pertaining to the Student Grievance Policy and procedures

Massachusetts Community Colleges Policy Goal: Conflict Resolution

Before invoking the Student Grievance Procedure, a reasonable effort shall be made by those involved in a dispute to resolve it amicably. A dispute is most effectively handled and resolved by those closest to the problem, having the best understanding of the issues, and having the ability to formulate a mutually acceptable resolution. Therefore, it is in the best interest of the student, the potential subject of a grievance, and the College to resolve disputes through open and cooperative dialogue. Only when such efforts are unsuccessful should the Student Grievance Procedure be invoked. Throughout all phases of the Student Grievance Procedure, all reasonable efforts shall be made to maintain confidentiality in accordance with applicable law.

Members of the campus community have a responsibility to act in a manner that promotes the well-being, respect, safety and security of all members of the campus community. Conduct that disrupts, invades or demonstrates disrespect for those rights will not be tolerated. Individuals are responsible for their conduct and the consequences of their actions. Interference with the College’s educational objectives or community life is cause for disciplinary action. All members of the College community and visitors are expected to refrain from such interference including, among others, the following particular types of conduct on College premises and at College sponsored or authorized activities. Although all staff members representing the College are concerned with the welfare and discipline of students, it is the responsibility of the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs, or his or her designee, in concert with other campus offices, to see that rules and regulations are maintained.

For details on the Student Code of Conduct, click here.

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, absences due to pregnancy or related conditions, including recovery from childbirth, shall be excused for as long as the student's doctor deems the absences to be medically necessary. When the student returns to the College she shall be reinstated to the status she held when the leave began, which includes the opportunity to make up any missed work. The College may offer the student alternatives to making up missed work, such as retaking a semester, taking part in online instruction, or allowing the student additional time in a program to continue at the same pace and finish at a later date. For more information, please contact the Title IX Coordinator.

The U. S. Department of Education's policy on Supporting the Academic Success of Pregnant and Parenting Students is available at

Under the Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 151C, any community college student who cannot attend class or take an exam, study or fulfill work requirements on a particular day, due to his/her religious beliefs shall be excused from such obligations. The student must be provided with an opportunity to make up such exam(s), study or work requirements; provided, however, that such make-up exam(s) or work does not create an unreasonable burden upon the institution. The student may not be charged for such make-up opportunities, nor may he/she be subject to adverse or prejudicial effects for availing him/herself of the provisions of the law.

Refer to the Student Code of Conduct, Disciplinary Offenses.

Massachusetts Public Colleges and Universities policy on students who are called to active military duty is as follows.

  • Students who are unable to complete a semester because they are called to active United States military duty shall, upon verification, be granted the option of a refund or credit of tuition and campus fees. With respect to any health insurance fee, the refund policy is subject to the concurrence of the institution’s insurance carrier.
  • Any students who have received any form of financial aid including a full or partial scholarship or student loan or who expect to receive such, should contact the financial aid office at their respective institution to make appropriate arrangements.
  • Students shall receive non-punitive withdrawals in all courses from which they are required to withdraw.
  • Students residing in residence halls shall receive refunds on a pro rata basis for the remainder of the semester. (This provision is subject to the approval of the Building Authority.)
  • Verification shall be provided by furnishing the Registrar with a copy of the Order to Active Duty within one week (7 days) of receipt of the order. If the Order is not in writing, the student may sign an affidavit attesting to such order which includes an address or telephone number where the institution can verify the Order and furnish the affidavit to the Registrar within one week (7 days) of receipt of the order.
  • The institution’s President may waive or suspend any institutional policy or regulation that negatively impacts students in their withdrawal or subsequent readmission to the institution due to a call to active duty.
  • The institution, upon request of a student, should assist the student in filing mitigating circumstances forms with external state or federal agencies (for example Veterans Affairs) in an attempt to prevent overpayment charges being made against the student.
  • Any student required to withdraw due to being called to active duty shall be given priority in enrollment in the program of his or her choice upon return to the institution for the two semesters immediately following his or her discharge from active duty.

Students need basic computer literacy to fully benefit from their educational experience at Cape Cod Community College. Official communication is via student email. Students need to know how to navigate the Internet, use the CampusWeb, access the Learning Management System (Moodle), and use computer applications in courses. CCCC offers classes, workshops, and tutoring to help students master working with computers. (Approved by College Meeting April 4, 2011; Revised December 10, 2012)

In keeping with Cape Cod Community College's commitment to excellent educational experiences and high-quality programs for its students, and consistent with practices at other institutions within the state and nationally, Cape Cod Community College routinely engages in the assessment of student learning at the course, program, institution, and system levels. The learning outcomes assessment process may include a variety of methods such as standardized tests, student survey and focus groups, campus development instruments, and a review of student course and co-curricular work. In circumstances beyond the individual course level, the identity of the student will be  protected. The student's name, grade or other identifying information will be removed before the student work is reviewed. Selected student work may be subject to review by a limited cohort of higher educational personnel, primarily faculty. Assessment of student learning is undertaken primarily for the purpose of improving student learning, curriculum development, instructional improvement, and enhancing student academic success. Assessment activities will have absolutely no effect on a student's grade, academic standing, ability to transfer, or ability to be graduated. Cape Cod Community College will take all necessary steps to ensure the confidentiality of all student records and student  work reviewed through this process in accordance with FERPA regulations. (Approved by College Meeting October 20, 2014)

Course Research Projects / Institutional Review Board

Course research projects conducted by students for the primary purpose of a learning experience in the methods and procedures of research usually do not meet the federal definition of research. However, best practices in research ethics strongly recommend that course research projects are independently reviewed and that appropriate human subjects’ protections are in place. Course research projects need to be approved prior to any data collection.

The instructor is responsible for all undergraduate student research from application to completion. The instructor will need to complete the National Institutes of Health (NIH) training for principle investigators on human subjects’ protection. Students participating in course research need to complete the NIH training or view an alternate educational video and complete a quiz.

The Institutional Review Board (IRB) website provides information on the application process, forms and the IRB Procedures Manual. The instructor should begin the student research process by contacting the IRB office well in advance of conducting the research.

Refer to Affirmative Action.

Under the Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 51, Section 42E (Section 17 of Chapter 475 of the Acts of 1993) effective January 1, 1995, affidavit of voter registration forms are available at the Registration Office of Cape Cod Community College. See the Registrar.