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Records and Registration Procedure - 50.03.03

College Policy Number/Title:

Howard Community College (HCC) students are responsible for any actions taken on their student record; this includes but is not limited to updating contact information, initiating registration and registration changes, submitting coursework, and making payment arrangements. All changes to the student record that are initiated in writing or through myHCC may only be done by the student. Students are not permitted to share their usernames or passwords to college assigned accounts with anyone to ensure identity remains both protected and authenticated.

Initial Credit Registration

Students are strongly encouraged to see an academic advisor prior to registering and register through myHCC. Registration dates appear on the college’s website. Schedule additions and changes may be made during registration periods as long as the student is eligible and a seat is available. If a section has an active waitlist, section capacity overrides are not honored. Students must be registered in order to attend classes.

Late Credit Registration

Once the term has begun, registration will only be permitted in sections that have available seats.

For 15 week classes, students may register for classes that have available seats through the close of business on the fifth business day of a term, excluding Saturday, Sunday, and holidays. After that, the department chair, associate dean, or dean may grant permission for late entry via the late exception request process or a credit section override form. Late exceptions may be made if there are extenuating circumstances, and the request must be submitted to the office of records, registration, and veterans’ affairs for review prior to submission to the appropriate academic dean. Dual enrollment requests for late exceptions are reviewed by the admissions and advising director and then forwarded to the appropriate academic dean.

For classes that meet less than 15 weeks, registration is permitted in sections through the first business day after the section start date; after that, late exception request rules apply.

Students who want to register for noncredit classes after sections have begun should contact the division of continuing education and workforce development.

Change between Credit and Audit

An audit designation must be specified at the time of registration. No credit will be given. Audit status can only be converted to credit status and credit status can only be converted to audit status during the first 20 percent of the section’s duration. Audited courses do not satisfy a pre-requisite for another course, and they do not count as part of the academic term’s credit hour load nor as credit toward graduation. Audited courses will appear on the transcript with a grade of "N." Students must meet course prerequisites to audit.

Drops and Withdrawals for Credit Courses

Drops from sections must be made during the specified period listed in myHCC.

First Three Weeks of Classes or Equivalent

A student who wants to drop a section during the first three weeks of class or its equivalent period of time for accelerated or late starting sections (up to the first 20 percent of the section’s duration) may use myHCC or submit a credit registration form to the office of records, registration, and veterans’ affairs (RRVA). Section refund deadlines appear in myHCC. The college strictly adheres to refund deadlines. Dropped courses are not reflected on the academic transcript. Students who drop a section may no longer attend that section and will no longer have access to the learning management system for that section.

Fourth to Tenth Week of Classes or Equivalent

A student who wants to withdraw from a section during the fourth to the tenth week of classes or its equivalent period of time (between 21 and 60 percent of the section’s duration) may use myHCC or submit a credit registration form to RRVA. The transcript will reflect a grade of “W” for withdrawn sections. Students are strongly encouraged to see an academic advisor prior to withdrawing. Financial aid and scholarship students must consult with financial aid services; students receiving veterans’ benefits or tuition assistance must consult with RRVA; students on an F-1 visa must consult admissions and advising. Students who withdraw from a section may no longer attend that section and will no longer have access to the learning management system for that section.

Never Attended “NA” Grade

Instructors identify students who register for sections and never attend a single meeting in the first 20 percent of the section’s dates with an “NA” grade. Instructors assign this grade by submitting an "NA" grade in myHCC when 20 percent of a section’s duration has passed. Students enrolled in online sections receive an “NA” grade if they fail to participate or engage in gradable work on the online learning management system used in the section; logging in is not considered participation. "NA" grades are due by 20 percent of the section’s duration and may not be removed, unless the “NA” was submitted in error. Students who receive “NA”s are not eligible to receive a final grade in the section, may not begin attending after the “NA” is reported, and will no longer have access to the learning management system for that section.

Obtaining a Transcript for Credit Courses

Students may request transcripts by mail, in myHCC, or in person at RRVA. Unofficial transcripts are available for students to view and print through myHCC. All written requests for official transcripts must be signed and dated by the student. There is no charge for official transcripts requested in person or by mail. Official transcripts are not issued to students with financial holds or until any pending student conduct process is complete. Online requests are charged a processing fee per transcript by HCC’s contracted vendor for this service, which provides students with the convenience of ordering and sending transcripts from off campus, outside of normal business hours, as well as the ability to send secure electronic transcripts in lieu of paper. Transcripts issued to the student can be printed upon request except during peak registration periods. The college will not release transcripts from high schools or other colleges maintained in a student's record; such documents remain the sole property of the issuing institution.

Graduation Applications

The college has three graduation dates and one commencement ceremony. For information on application deadlines and graduation requirements, refer to procedure 10.04.01, Graduation Requirements and Honors Distinctions.

Change of Grade for Credit Courses

An issued grade may be changed when a change of grade form or “NA” removal form is prepared by the instructor, approved by the dean, and received by RRVA; the registrar has final approval for “NA” removal requests.

Incomplete Work

Outstanding “I” grades will be converted to “F” grades after the seventh week in the following major term. Grading policy requires that the “I” grade designation be changed to a permanent grade, other than “L” or “W”, within a predetermined period of time determined by the instructor at the time that the grade is assigned. Normally, the period to complete objectives will not exceed the end of the seventh week of the next fall or spring semester or the incomplete will be converted to an “F” grade. An incomplete grade contract form, specifying the necessary objectives and date by which they need to be completed, is prepared by the instructor and signed by the student. A copy of this form is sent to RRVA. “I” grades do not satisfy prerequisites, and degrees and certificates cannot be awarded if incomplete coursework is pending. A last date of attendance is required when issuing an “I” grade.

Records and Registration Appeals Committee

A student who has an unexpected life event or other extenuating circumstances during a term may request an exception to HCC’s dates and deadlines. To initiate the appeal process, the student must submit a registration appeal to RRVA. A complete appeal includes the appeals form, which is available through RRVA and online, a personal statement, and appropriate supporting, dated documentation. Non-failing grades are not appealable. Appeals must be submitted to RRVA no later than the end of the seventh week of the next fall or spring semester following the term for which the student is appealing. Students whose appeals are denied are entitled to submit a second-level appeal to the attention of the registrar. A final appeal may be made to the vice president of student services; the decision of the vice president of student services is final.

An involuntary withdrawal may be requested whenever there are circumstances beyond the student’s control, which make it impossible to complete a section in progress during a given term. A withdrawal is considered involuntary if it results from one of the following situations:

  • Called to active military duty via enlistment, activation, or deployment;
  • Illness of the student or in the immediate family of the student (immediate family includes a child, parent, spouse or other regular member of the individual’s household);
  • Pregnancy, pregnancy-related, or parenting-related issue;
  • Death of the student or in the immediate family of the student; or
  • Involuntary transfer/change in work hours by the student’s employer that precludes continued attendance. Military branches of services are considered employers under this section.

In all cases, appropriate, dated documentation must be provided. Documentation that qualifies students for a drop may be used to grant a refund. However, it is a student’s responsibility to fulfill the student’s financial obligation to the college, as a granted appeal may impact financial aid awards or military/veterans’ benefits.

Change of Personal Information

Current students must initiate a change of information with RRVA to revise their names (legal and chosen), physical and preferred mailing addresses, email addresses, and telephone numbers. Employees wishing to initiate a change of information should contact the office of human resources.

A legal name is defined as the official name on file with the state and federal government. A chosen name is defined as the name that a student may choose as an important component of the student’s identity. HCC has established guidelines that allow students to indicate a chosen first name to be used by the HCC community even if the student has not changed their official, legal name.

All chosen names will be reviewed by RRVA. Howard Community College reserves the right to deny any chosen first name requests that are deemed vulgar, promotes a business, or causes or disrupts College operations. Chosen name may be displayed on student ID cards, college-issued email addresses, in the college’s student information system, Self Service, and Canvas. Chosen name may appear on any internal or external communications, including those sent to home addresses and is a part of directory information. In the case where chosen name is attached to gender identity, students may be given the opportunity to update their pronouns within various college systems, where possible, to reflect their gender identity.

Legal and chosen names will be associated with the same student record; students are responsible for any financial charges regardless of the name used in communication with them regarding college matters. Legal name will be used on official college documents, including but not limited to transcripts, financial aid documents, financial obligations, tax documents, federal, state, and national student clearinghouse reporting, and payroll records.

To change a legal name, documentation is required. Acceptable documents for a legal name change are a valid driver’s license from any state or Maryland non-driver identification card, marriage license, divorce decree, adoption documents, court order, valid passport, or birth certificate. Documents that are not considered acceptable legal documents include a social security card or a notarized statement. For international students on a visa, the legal name must reflect the name that appears on the visa. Upon receipt of the supporting documentation, the legal name in the student’s academic record will be changed in the student information system. Legal name is used for official records, including but not limited to legal documents and reports produced by HCC, financial aid and scholarship documents, academic transcripts, enrollment verifications, paychecks, W2s, and other payroll and tax documents.

Former names, both chosen and legal, are maintained in the college’s student information system and any previous existing paper records. Documents maintained in the student record prior to a name change will not be updated. Former students must request a replacement diploma if they wish to have a diploma reflective of their new name. Current students need to visit public safety for updated identification cards and contact the information technology helpdesk to change email addresses.

Change of Area of Study

Students who want to officially change their area of study must submit a change of area of study form to the office of admissions and advising.

Effective Date: 11/13/20

President's Office Use:  VPSS/VPAA - CAT

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