Cell Phone Use in Classrooms

(Revised Spring 2009)

As a member of the learning community, each student has a responsibility to other students who are members of the community.  When cell phones or pagers ring and students respond in class or leave class to respond, it disrupts the class.  Therefore, the Office of the Provost prohibits the use by students of cell phones, pagers, PDAs, or similar communication devices during scheduled classes.  All such devices must be turned off or put in a silent (vibrate) mode and ordinarily should not be taken out during class.  Given the fact that these same communication devices are an integral part of the University’s emergency notification system, an exception to this policy would occur when numerous devices activate simultaneously.  When this occurs, students may consult their devices to determine if a university emergency exists.  If that is not the case, the devices should be immediately returned to silent mode and put away.  Other exceptions to this policy may be granted at the discretion of the instructor.

Sanctions for violation of this policy are determined by the instructor and may include dismissal from the class—see Class Disruption.  

Use of cell phones, similar communication devices, or any unauthorized electronic data storage devise in testing situations, other than to receive University emergency notifications, may constitute a violation of the Academic Integrity Policy and lead to sanctions under the Student Academic Integrity Policies and Procedures.

There are two appeal processes available to students.  A sanction for class disruption may be appealed using the appeal process stated in the Class Disruption policy; however, a violation that involves a charge of academic dishonesty must be appealed using the process described in the Student Academic Integrity Policies and Procedures.