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Policies and Procedures

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Western Wyoming Community College General Administrative Regulation

Student/Community Use of Computers

Western Wyoming Community College believes that computers are an important part of today’s educational environment and provides access for students and community members to the college computers and networks.  This access is designed to facilitate the educational mission of the College.  In order to be granted access privileges and to retain them, students and visitors must abide by the policies and guidelines outlined in this document.  This policy applies to those who use personal computers on the college premises and college-owed computers.

Computers and networks can provide access to a vast array of resources and allow users to communicate with others worldwide.  Such open access is a privilege, and requires that individual users act responsibly.  Users must respect the rights of other users, the integrity of the computer system and network, and observe all relevant college policies, regulations, and contractual obligations.  Common sense and courtesy should be utilized when consuming the shared computer resources of the college.

Use of Western Wyoming Community College computers and access may be monitored by college staff.  The College is responsible for ensuring the integrity and performance of its computing systems.  While respecting the rights of all users, when the integrity of the system is threatened, college administrators will take actions necessary to maintain the standards of the system.

 

Appropriate Use
WWCC takes a fairly broad approach to access to computers and networks.  However, users should keep in mind that college-owned computers are for educational purposes.  Use of computers for on-line chatting, accessing material that does not support the educational function or infringes upon the rights of other users, and game playing, is monitored and may be prohibited.  Illegal downloading of music, video or software is prohibited.

All users are required to use computer facilities in a manner that conforms to all applicable federal, state, and local laws.  These laws can be found on the Internet.  All potential violations of law will be turned over to local law enforcement agencies.

Visitors are required to adhere to posted usage policies for student labs, the library, student use computers in gathering areas, and other locations that are part of the WWCC environment.  These policies relate to such things as which students/community members are allowed to use the facility or computers, time limits, reserved hours of usage, and restricted activities.  These policies may be more restrictive than this general policy. 

Use of college computers for any activity that is commercial in nature including, but not limited to, consulting, typing services, and developing software for sale is not allowed.  Exceptions to this regulation must be approved in advance by the Vice President for Student Success Services.

 

Misuse of the WWCC Computing Environment
Inappropriate use of the college’s computer resources includes, but is not limited to:
bulletUnauthorized access to administrative computer systems and student records
bulletExcessive use of bandwidth
bulletMasking the identity of an account or machine
bulletMass solicitations or communications via e-mail
bulletUsing logins and passwords that belong to other people
bulletAccessing, copying, or modifying files of the institution or others without permission
bulletIllegal use of any kind, including copyright infringement per the US Copyright Law
bulletDisplaying sexually explicit, graphically disturbing, or sexually harassing images or text on a public computer that can be viewed by other individuals
bulletInterference with the normal operation of the computer network
bulletHarassing others in any way

 

Enforcement
When the college believes there is a violation of this Computer Use policy, it reserves the right to investigate such violations and to copy and examine pertinent files and content of electronic mailboxes accessed from college computers.  Infractions of WWCC Computer Usage Policy may result in temporary or permanent loss of access privileges.  When improper utilization is identified, the College will follow due process guidelines.

bulletVerbal warning will be given by an appropriate college employee to the user regarding the violation and a request made to discontinue the inappropriate behavior.
bulletThe second identified offense will result in a written warning to the individual
bulletThe third offense will result in loss of computer use privileges on WWCC property for a specified period of time or, in the case of more serious infractions, indefinitely
bulletThose who continue to violate the usage policy, will be placed on Criminal Trespass and will not be allowed on college property

Personally owned computers are subject to the same regulations as those owned by the college.  Violators will receive the same due process and may ultimately be banned from using the college’s network with their personal computer.

In the case of very serious situations of legal violations or concern about the safety and comfort of other individuals as a result of use that could be harassing, intimidating, or interrupting the educational process, steps listed above may be skipped or combined.  Individuals have the right to appeal any decision through the Non-Academic Grievance process.

Administration
WWCC makes every effort to ensure the best possible service in support of all of its computer networks.  However, the college does not always have the resources available to respond to all immediate crises and issues as they arise.  Concerns will be handled on a priority basis as quickly as possible.

Information posted by students on computer bulletin boards, electronic forums, web pages, or other publicly accessible sites administered by the College is subject to review and may be deleted if found to be unacceptable.

Acknowledgment
This document uses excerpts from similar documents from Santa Barbara City College, Keystone College, Salem College, and City College of San Francisco. Special thanks to these resources.

 

Approved:  Executive Council:  August 4, 2005

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