Policies and Rules

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1.01  Units of Credit

  1. A.    Units of Credit Students earn units of credit by receiving a passing grade in online courses delivered by UC Berkeley School of Law (“Berkeley Law”).  Berkeley Law does not accept credit for any online courses towards its in-resident degree programs including the JD, LLM, JSP and JSD degree programs.

1.02 Class Preparation and Attendance

We expect every student to prepare fully for class and to participate actively in class discussion forums. For this purpose regular preparation of assignments is required. In the absence of prior communication of a valid excuse to the instructor, an instructor may exclude a student from certain class activities for which the student is unprepared. An instructor may, by written notice, exclude a student from the final examination on the basis of repeated unexcused non-participation or unpreparedness that have occurred. In determining the student’s grade in the course, the instructor may consider the quality of a student’s preparation and his or her participation in class discussion. See also the note to Rule 3.02(A)(1) below, regarding disqualification.


2.01 Examinations

  1. When Held: Written examinations may include a mid-term and/or online quizzes and/or an examination at the end of term except where another procedure for evaluation has been announced by the second week of class.
  1. Attendance: Every student must participate in all examinations at the regularly scheduled exam period and location (if an exam center is specified) in each course for which he or she is registered, unless previously excused by the Dean of Students. A student who is unable to participate in an examination must notify the Dean before the exam and present all reasons why participation is impossible. In cases of medical disability the student must furnish professional documentation, and in all other cases, the student must furnish whatever appropriate corroborating evidence is available. If the Dean concludes that non-participation results from circumstances beyond the control of the student, the Dean will provide the student with a timely opportunity to take the examination at a later date.  It is the student’s responsibility to obtain the Dean’s permission for a rescheduled before the exam.  If the student has not received permission in writing, then the student must take the exam during its regularly scheduled time.

2.02 Make-up Examinations

A student who has been excused from taking an examination in the regularly scheduled time period must make up the examination in one of the following ways, as determined by the Dean: (1) by taking an examination later than the scheduled time, but ordinarily not later than the last day of the examination period involved; or for situations not involving an exam, (2) by taking an In Progress  (“IP”) grade and completing the requirements of the course pursuant to the provisions of Rule 3.04(A) below.

2.03 The Honor Code

Examinations are conducted under the Academic Honor Code, attached to this document as Appendix A.


3.01 Grade Designations

  1. In General Except as provided in Rules 3.01(B) and 3.04 below, students will receive one of the following grades for completed work:
    1. A, B, C, or D
    2. A failing grade (F) showing that no credit is earned for the course.
    3. Courses Graded Credit/No Pass Students can elect to take online courses for a Credit/No Pass grade by the end of the third week of class.
    4. In Progress
      1. In general, If a student has failed to complete the requirements of a course, including but not limited to a requirement of a final examination, the Dean of Students may approve the designation “In Progress” on his or her record.  IPs are permitted only in rare emergency situations upon approval of the Dean and with corroborating evidence.

3.02 Disqualification

  1. Bases of Disqualification.
    1. In General.  If a student fails two or more classes, then the student shall be disqualified from further admission to any certificate courses or on-line courses at Berkeley Law
  1. Appeal from Disqualification A student seeking readmission may appeal his or her disqualification to the Dean.  The Dean will make the decision about readmission and the Dean’s decision will be final on all appeals.  If the student convincingly demonstrates to the Dean that his or her record resulted from circumstances beyond his or her control and that he or she can and probably will do proficient law school work in the future, the Dean may approve that the student be readmitted and allowed to continue in the certificate program or in other on-line classes, subject to such conditions of probation as the Dean may impose.

3.03 Confidentiality

Students’ grades and files will remain strictly confidential, in that disclosure may not be made to persons outside the University except at the student’s direction. The Dean of Students shall regulate disclosure within the law school.

3.04 Consequences of a Designation of Incomplete or a Grade of No Credit 

  1. Incomplete
  2. Change or Finalization of Designation of In Progress If a student who has received a designation of In Progress completes the course requirements within the prescribed period, the grade achieved in the course will be entered. If the student does not complete the course requirements within the prescribed period, either the grade No Credit will be entered or, in the instructor’s discretion, the designation of Incomplete will be made a final and non-replaceable grade.
    1. No Credit
    2. Repeated Courses A student who receives a grade of No Credit in an on-line course may repeat the course if he or she so elects. The original grade will remain on the student’s transcript.
      1. Eligibility for Academic Honors
      2. 1.     Students who receive an “A” in each and every certificate course will receive a Certificate with Honors.  



4.01 Withdrawal 

  • A. Between Semesters or Prior to Examination Period. A student enrolled in a Berkeley Law on-line course may voluntarily withdraw from the course at any time up to the lesser of one module or one week after the course begins by (following UCOE’s procedure along with a statement of reason for withdrawal).  Berkeley Law will refund 90% of the tuition to students withdrawing during this period, after which time no refund will be given..


Factors Used to Determine Grades. A student’s letter grade shall be determined as detailed in the course materials, which may not be modified as to grading factors after the second week of class.  Failure to comply with the standards set forth in the UCOE Online Student Code of Conduct can be factored into grades.

  1. Time for Reporting of Grades by the Instructor Instructors must report all grades for each course within three weeks of the examination period. Any instructor who cannot meet these deadlines must have the prior approval of the Dean, which shall be granted only for good cause shown.


In General

The Honor Code is a tradition at Berkeley Law. Men and women who are preparing to enter the legal profession are expected to exhibit the same qualities of honesty, responsibility, and respect for the rights of others that are demanded of practicing members of the American legal profession and regulated by State Bar Associations or courts. The Honor Code governs the conduct of students during examinations and in all other academic and pre-professional activities at Berkeley Law. In addition, students are bound by the Campus Rules of Student Conduct (give link here), which govern matters such as dishonesty, forgery and sexual harassment.

Primary responsibility for respecting the appropriate rules rests with each individual student and with the student body as a whole. Students, faculty and staff are urged to bring apparent violations to the attention of the Instructor and/or the Dean. The Honor Code can be successful only to the extent that it is seen to have the overwhelming support of student and faculty opinion and to be taken seriously by everyone.

Enforcement Procedure

A student, faculty, or staff member witnessing any violation or apparent violation of this Code should bring the matter to the attention of the Dean. After discussion with the alleged violator, the instructor, and other affected or knowledgeable persons, the Dean (or the Dean’s designated representative) shall determine how the matter is to be resolved.

Examinations and Other Academic Activities 

The basic guide for a student taking an examination or participating in any other academic activity is honesty and integrity. Students are expected to rely on their own knowledge and ability, and not use unauthorized materials or represent the work of others as their own. These standards apply also to papers, oral presentations; online activities or submissions; or other activities for which academic credit is assigned, except where the instructor provides otherwise. Students who are allowed to take an examination before or after the normal date should not give or obtain any information about the content of the examination.  Violations of the letter or the spirit of the rules are violations of the rights of other students, as well as of the standards of integrity required by this school and the legal profession.


1.   Have reasonable expectations for e-mail responses. Follow the instructions that the instructor gives you about appropriate use of e-mail communication for the given class. In general, communication should be via the class discussion area.

2.   Create postings that are academically relevant and that adhere to the same standards of any other written work you would submit for grading. Thread your postings with the postings of others in the discussion by engaging in the dialogue. Try to ask questions, add clarifications, present comparisons, relate professional-practice insights and show appreciation for your peers’ contributions.

3.   Avoid value judgments. Value judgments imply a right and wrong, rather than a difference of opinion. They involve making an estimation of the quality and/or goodness of a person, action or event. They retard rather than promote communication.

Online Written Engagement Protocols
1.   Be professional when communicating. Participation in the classroom should uphold principles of collegiality and professionalism. Issues that arise between the instructor and the student should be kept isolated to the concerned student and instructor. The use of the online classroom electronic features such as e-mail, discussion groups, chat, and document collaboration for disbursement of inflammatory issues or language is considered inappropriate behavior. Instructors reserve the right to delete any such postings.

2.   Avoid abusive language. Abusive use of language and a hostile attitude within classroom interactions is considered unacceptable. Be careful not to be malicious, spiteful or overly confrontational. Challenging the ideas of others through scholarly discourse is acceptable and can contribute to a rich learning experience. However, any verbal attacks of a personal nature is unacceptable and may lead to dismissal from the course.

Academic Integrity
Cite sources properly. Learning how to cite sources properly, giving credit to original author’s works, is an important element in Berkeley Law’s teaching/learning environment. Students should be familiar with the guidelines the university provides and try their utmost to avoid the pitfalls of plagiarism. Citing all sources — hard copy, Web-based, and others — in proper academic format is expected of every student.

Recommendations for success in online classes

Time Management
1.   Login frequently. Login and participate in class activities at least four days every week unless otherwise directed by the instructor.

2.   Create high quality postings. Quality participation involves more than just making an isolated posting; postings should build on previous submissions and expand the depth of the discussion. Your instructor may have additional guidelines for scholarship, writing style and citation/reference use and formatting.

3.   Read all required course materials thoroughly. Students are responsible for reading all content items in the course. Some class assignments and activities are often located in different areas of the class.

4.   Stay current. Students are expected to keep current with all the readings, assignments, homework and classroom participation. It is important to note that falling behind in an online class makes it very difficult to catch up.


Note:  Full UCOE student conduct policies can be found at: http://www.uconline.edu/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/UCOE-Policies-June-4-2013_final_update_Aug-20-13.pdf

103.1  Grounds for Discipline

The UCOP Provost or designee may impose discipline for the commission or attempted commission (including aiding or abetting in the commission or attempted commission) of the following types of violations by students:


All forms of academic misconduct including but not limited to cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, or facilitating academic  dishonesty.


Other forms of dishonesty including but not limited to fabricating information, furnishing false information, or reporting a false emergency to the University.


Forgery, alteration, or misuse of any University document, record, key, electronic device, or identification.


Theft of, conversion of, destruction of, or damage to any property of the University, or any property of others while engaged in University activities, or possession of any property when the student had knowledge or reasonably should have had knowledge that it was stolen.


Theft or abuse of University computers and other University electronic resources such as computer and electronic communications facilities, systems, and services.  Abuses include (but are not limited to) unauthorized entry, use, transfer, or tampering with the communications of others; interference with the work of others and with the operation of computer and electronic communications facilities, systems, and services; copyright infringement (for example, the illegal file-‐‐sharing of copyrighted materials); and/or use of University computer and electronic communications facilities, systems, or services that violates other University policies or campus regulations.  Please refer to the UC Electronic Communications Policy (http://www.ucop.edu/ucophome/policies/ec/) and Digital Copyright Protection at UC (http://www.ucop.edu/irc/policy/copyright.html) for the University’s position on digital copyright.


Unauthorized entry to, possession of, receipt of, or use of any University services; equipment; resources; or properties, including the University’s name, insignia, or seal.


Physical abuse including but not limited to sexual assault, sex offenses, and other physical assault; threats of violence; or other conduct that threatens the health or safety of any person.


Sexual, racial, and other forms of harassment, defined as follows:  Harassment is defined as conduct that is so severe and/or pervasive, and objectively offensive, and that so substantially impairs a person’s access to University programs or activities, that the person is effectively denied equal access to the University’s resources and opportunities on the basis of his or her race, color, national or ethnic origin, alienage, sex, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, veterans status, physical or mental disability, or perceived membership in any of these classifications.

When employed by the University of California, and acting within the course and scope of that employment, students are subject to the University of California  Policy on Sexual Harassment.  Otherwise, Section 103.09, above, is the applicable standard for harassment by students.


Stalking behavior in which a student repeatedly engages in a course of conduct directed at another person and makes a credible threat with the intent to place that person in reasonable fear for his or her safety, or the safety of his or her family; where the threat is reasonably determined by the University to seriously alarm, torment, or terrorize the person; and where the threat is additionally determined by the University to serve no legitimate purpose.


Obstruction or disruption of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary procedures, or other University activities.


Disorderly or lewd conduct.


Participation in a disturbance of the peace or unlawful assembly.


Failure to identify oneself to, or comply with the directions of, a University official or other public official acting in the performance of his or her duties while on University property or at official University functions; or resisting or obstructing such University or other public officials in the performance of or the attempt to perform their duties.


Unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, use, or sale of, or the attempted manufacture, distribution, dispensing, or sale of controlled substances, identified in federal and state law or regulations.


Manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, use, or sale of, or the attempted manufacture, distribution, dispensing, or sale of alcohol that is unlawful or otherwise prohibited by, or not in compliance with, University policy or campus regulations.


Possession, use, storage, or manufacture of explosives, firebombs, or other destructive devices.


Possession, use, or manufacture of a firearm or other weapon as prohibited by campus regulations.


Violation of the conditions contained in the terms of a disciplinary action imposed under University Policies.


Violation of the conditions contained in a written Notice of Emergency Suspension issued by the UCOP Provost or designee pursuant to Section 53.00 of University Policies or violation of orders issued pursuant to Section 52.00 of University Policies, during a declared state of emergency.


a. Selling, preparing, or distributing for any commercial purpose course lecture notes or video or audio recordings of any course unless authorized by the University in advance and explicitly permitted by the course instructor in writing.  The unauthorized sale or commercial distribution of course notes or recordings by a student is a violation of University Policies whether or not it was the student or someone else who prepared the notes or recordings.

b.  Copying for any commercial purpose handouts, readers or other course materials provided by an instructor as part of a University of California course unless authorized by the University in advance and explicitly permitted by the course instructor or the copyright holder in writing (if the instructor is not the copyright holder).


Conduct where the actor means to communicate a serious expression of intent to terrorize, or acts in reckless disregard of the risk of terrorizing, one or more University students, faculty, or staff.  ‘Terrorize’ means to cause a reasonable person to fear bodily harm or death, perpetrated by the actor or those acting under his/her control.  ‘Reckless disregard’ means consciously disregarding a substantial risk. This section applies without regard to whether the conduct is motivated by race, ethnicity, personal animosity, or other reasons.  This section does not apply to conduct that constitutes the lawful defense of oneself, of another, or of property.