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Information Services

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Computer Usage Policies

The following Rhodes policies and guidelines apply to the entire college community. The policies address the responsible use of information and technology resources, violations of policy, and guidelines for the effective use of technology resources. Individuals are also subject to federal, state and local laws governing networked interactions.

The following policies and guidelines are subject to change in accordance with changes in state and federal laws and as need arises, and ignorance of these policies may not be used as an excuse for actions that violate these policies. Suggestions for or questions about these policies are welcomed and should be sent to the Vice President for Student and Information Services.

The sections below outline policy language definitions, user privileges, user responsibilities, and purchase and procurement.


Anonymous (not verified) August 18, 2015

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The following definitions apply to the policies and guidelines for appropriate usage of technology at Rhodes College.

  • “Rhodes computers” refers to computing equipment purchased with institutional funds as well as to computing equipment purchased with personal funds but authorized for and placed on a mediate or immediate location on the Rhodes network.
  • “Authorized computers” refers to Rhodes computers that have been inspected by Rhodes Information Services division personnel and certified for connection to the Rhodes network in its configuration. Subsequent hardware, software, or operating system configurations of the same machine may require reauthorization. Authorized computers must conform to the standards as defined below. Requests for exceptions to the standard must be made to the appropriate dean or vice president before a machine may be purchased or submitted for authorization for a network connection.
  • “Appropriate dean or vice president” refers to one’s corresponding representative at the level of dean or vice president. For example, students are to contact the Dean of Students, faculty the Dean of the Faculty, and staff their divisional head.
  • “Information Services” refers to the array of services provided by the division of Information Services and includes equipment procurement, equipment support, user support, and system and account administration.
  • “Authorized users” (hereafter also “users” unless specified as “unauthorized users”) refers to individuals who may exercise the privilege to use Rhodes computers or Rhodes information services. Use of the Rhodes computers is limited to those persons identified under the following item, User Privileges, and is subject to the following standards of use.
Anonymous (not verified) August 18, 2015

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User Privileges

Rhodes Faculty, Staff, and Students. Any Rhodes faculty, staff, or student, full-time or part-time, may use the Rhodes computers for any academic purpose. No employee or student may use Rhodes computers for commercial ventures. No employee or student may use Rhodes computers on behalf of external organizations or persons unless such use is directly related to Rhodes courses or to faculty research and professional development and is approved by the appropriate dean or vice president.

Rhodes Graduates. Rhodes graduates may have limited access to Rhodes academic computing systems for academic use for up to approximately one month after graduating from Rhodes and will be notified of the exact cut-off date in advance of graduation. Information Services reserves the right to limit the amount of access and type of service provided.

Rhodes Faculty Emeriti. Rhodes faculty emeriti may have limited access to Rhodes academic computing systems. Information Services reserves the right to limit the amount of access and type of service provided.

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User Responsibilities

Cooperative Use.  Collegiality demands the practice of cooperative computing. In addition to following the intent of other policy statements on student conduct and employee conduct, it entails:

  • Regular deletion of unneeded files from one′s accounts on shared computing resources.
  • Refraining from overuse of connect time, and network services such as information storage space, printing facilities, processing capacity and bandwidth.
  • Refraining from use of sounds and visuals, which might be disruptive or offensive to others.
  • Refraining from use of any computing resource in an irresponsible manner.
  • Refraining from unauthorized use of departmental or individual computing resources.

Violations. Violation of any portion of the Computer Usage Policies will result in suspension of one’s privileges for use of Rhodes computers and information technology services until the appropriate dean or vice president approves reauthorization of access to equipment and services, in addition to any other penalty that may be imposed under other College rules, such as the Honor Code or Social Regulations. Users must not conceal or help to conceal or “cover up” violations by any party. Users are expected to report any evidence of actual or suspected violation of these policies to the Vice President for Student and Information Services.

Rhodes College is authorized to investigate alleged or apparent violations of college policy or applicable law using whatever means appropriate. Rhodes reserves the right to monitor use of Rhodes computers and to access, inspect and/or download any and all information stored on Rhodes′ computers in the course of such investigation. Information Services is authorized by the college to investigate policy violations and apply reduction or elimination of access privileges while the matter is under review and/or as a penalty for violations. These sanctions may apply to computing accounts, networks, college-administered computing rooms, and other services or facilities. A college user accused of a violation will be notified of the charge and will have an opportunity to respond to the college disciplinary body appropriate to the violator’s status, before a final determination of any penalty.

Unauthorized Access. Users must not access or attempt to access data or services on a college system they are not authorized to access. Users must not defeat or attempt to defeat any college system’s security, for example, by ‘cracking’ or guessing user identifications or passwords. Additionally, users must not permit or assist any unauthorized person to access college systems. Unauthorized use includes giving a valid username and password to any unauthorized individual, business, or agency outside of the Rhodes community. Unauthorized use also includes giving an authorized user access to a service or equipment for which the user is not authorized by giving a valid username and password. Users are responsible for the security of their college system accounts and passwords. Accounts and passwords are not to be shared. Users are presumed to be responsible for any activity carried out under their college system accounts. Users must not conceal their identity when using college systems, except when anonymous access is explicitly provided. Users must not masquerade as or impersonate others.

Unauthorized Services. Users must not run unauthorized servers, including but not limited to DNS, DHCP, email, file sharing, print, video or audio streaming, web, peer-to-peer, or other application services. Such services disrupt and in some cases disable central services. Authorization to run a service may be obtained upon approval from the Vice President of Student and Information Services.

Denial or Disruption of Service. Users must not deny or disrupt or attempt to deny or disrupt service to other users by means of excessive consumption of resources, distribution of computer “worms” or viruses, excessive computing load or deliberately causing the failure of any system resource, including email, bandwidth, or web services. Knowing or reckless distribution of unwanted mail or other messages is prohibited. Uses of computer resources that may cause excessive network traffic are prohibited. Equipment causing service disruptions will be removed from the network immediately, the user notified of the removal, and then arrangements made for repairing the equipment to avoid further disruption upon reconnection to the network.

Data Networks. Users publish information in electronic forms on Rhodes equipment and/or over Rhodes′s networks. Rhodes has no intention or opportunity to screen such private material and thus cannot assure its accuracy or assume any responsibility for this material. Users must observe all applicable policies and laws when using such networks. Users must not download or post material that is illegal, such as child pornography or proprietary, such as copyrighted music, software, video, text or other intellectual property. Discovery of such material will result in its immediate removal and possible legal action.

Modification of Data or Equipment. Without specific authorization, users of college systems must not cause, permit, or attempt any destruction or modification of data or computing or communications equipment, including but not limited to alteration of data, reconfiguration of control switches or parameters, or changes in firmware. Users must not make or attempt to make any deliberate, unauthorized changes to data on a college system. Users must not intercept or attempt to intercept data communications not intended for that user’s access, for example, by ‘promiscuous’ bus monitoring, network “sniffing,” port scanning, wiretapping, or using an unprotected system that has been logged on. Without specific authorization by the Vice President for Information Services, users must not remove any College-owned or -administered equipment or documents from a college system. This rule protects data, computing and communications equipment owned by Rhodes College, or any other person or entity authorized as part of the Rhodes computing community.

Threats and Harassment. Users may not post information that is slanderous or defamatory in nature or display graphically disturbing or sexually harassing images or text on electronic bulletin boards or web pages, and on college owned computers. Likewise, users may not use a college system to threaten or harass any person. A user must cease sending messages using a service provided by Information Services or interfering in any way with another user’s normal use of college systems if the aggrieved user makes a reasonable request for such cessation to the appropriate dean or vice president. Additional action, if necessary, shall follow the procedure outlined in the college’s policy on harassment.

Unfortunately computer abuse, harassment, malicious behavior, and unauthorized account access do happen. If you are a victim of a threat or other harassment, please consult the policy and procedures for harassment in the Handbook. Additionally, please keep copies of the harassing email messages, dates, and times of unauthorized access, etc., for investigative purposes. If you need Information Services to make a copy of the transaction for you, please contact the Help Desk.

Privacy of Personal Records. The College observes the requirements of the following regulations:

  • Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)
  • Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA)
  • Gramm-Leach-Blilely Act of 1999 (GLBA)
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)

Every individual who, in the course of performing their duties, has access to personal data is charged with maintaining the highest standards of conduct with regard to those data. Accordingly, the College requires everyone with access to these data to take whatever actions are warranted to protect the privacy of individuals covered by these regulations and abstain from any activity that might compromise that privacy. Violations of these principles will be handled in a manner consistent with the procedures outlined above in “User Responsibilities” and elsewhere in the Handbook.

Anonymous (not verified) August 18, 2015

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Purchasing and Procurement

Purchasing of all computing software and hardware (e.g., programs, computers, monitors, printers, network and storage devices) must be coordinated through Information Services. All purchases of Rhodes computers must conform to the standards for authorized computers unless the appropriate dean or vice president has issued approval for nonstandard hardware or software. Deans/VPs should consult with the Vice President for Student and Information Services to determine the risks, liabilities, and conditions for use of nonstandard equipment prior to consideration for approval.

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The Office of Institutional Research has established the following policy related to surveys of students, faculty, or staff. The goals of this policy are:

  • to minimize individuals’ burdens for responding to surveys;
  • to ensure that data collected is valid and reliable and is used for informed decision-making;
  • to respect the academic freedom of faculty and students conducting scholarly research

This policy is in addition to, not a substitute or replacement for, the Institutional Review Board (IRB) policies for the use of human subjects.

General Purpose Surveys

Any administrative office or committee, student organization, or outside entity wishing to survey students, faculty, and/or staff must submit a request to the Office of Institutional Research two weeks before the proposed survey is scheduled to commence.

After consulting with the party requesting the survey, the Director of Institutional Research will approve or disapprove the request.

  • The request may not be approved if information similar to what is being sought already exists.
  • The request may not be approved if the survey places an undue burden on the individuals being surveyed, makes poor use of resources, or might unduly reduce future response rates.

If the request is approved, Institutional Research can provide the following support:

  • identify an appropriate sample of the population
  • consult on the proposed survey instrument to help reduce bias
  • create the survey instrument using our web-based software
  • send the survey to the sample electronically
  • collect responses electronically
  • provide the survey results to the party requesting the survey (maintaining respondent anonymity if appropriate).

Survey results must be shared with the Office of Institutional Research.

Scholarly Research Surveys

Faculty or students who wish to survey students, faculty, and/or staff for scholarly research should notify the Office of Institutional Research about their research as early as possible, indicating (to the degree possible without compromising the research):

  • the sample to whom the survey will be sent,
  • the nature of the survey, and
  • the timeframe for the survey.

Sending a copy of the actual survey instrument to Institutional Research would be appreciated, but is not required.

Sharing the results of the survey and the associated research with Institutional Research would be appreciated, but is not required.

Institutional Research may be able to provide support for scholarly research, depending on available capacity.


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Information Technology Support

Information Services is located in Barret Library. The division establishes and maintains the technological infrastructure, services, and products required for the students and employees of Rhodes College to make the institution the best residential, liberal arts college it can be. The vision of Information Services is to provide a standard of support that enables the students and employees of the College to explore technological solutions to old and new problems in liberal arts education with eagerness and confidence.

Help Desk. The Help Desk is the central place from which technical problems are solved. The technician who receives your call will attempt to resolve the issue over the phone. If, however, the technician is unable to solve the problem in a few minutes, then he or she will assign your call to a staff member who will respond in a timely manner depending on the priority of the request. Call 843-3890 or email

Email.  Email is available to facilitate the professional and business work of persons employed at the College. It provides a way to communicate on a one-to-one basis and to designated groups. The following guidelines are intended to establish reasonable usage of electronic mail.

  • Please do not post personal messages or requests using @facstaff, @faculty or @staff.
  • Announcements of College events should be limited to one per event; however, one brief reminder is permitted.
  • Please address your electronic mail to the appropriate group. Use @facstaff for all faculty and staff, @faculty for faculty only, and @staff for staff only.
  • Create distribution lists to send messages to specific groups rather than blanket the entire faculty and staff with a message that is of interest to only a few people.

Network services. Networked connections and services are maintained by Information Services. No device should be connected to the network without approval of Information Services. Unauthorized servers are not permitted. Please refer to "Policies Governing Appropriate Computer Usage" for further information. Please do not post personal messages or requests using @facstaff, @faculty or @staff.


Anonymous (not verified) August 18, 2015

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Internet Policies

The Rhodes College Site

The Rhodes College site is managed by the Office of Communications to provide the entire Rhodes community – prospective students, current students, alumni, faculty, staff, parents, visitors, employers, the media, etc. – with up-to-date information about the college and access to Internet-based functional features (such as searches, online applications and event registrations).

Although the Office of Communications centrally manages the overall design, organization and interface for the Rhodes site, responsibility for content maintenance is shared with each division and department. Participation in site content maintenance ranges from working with the Office of Communications to assist with content updates to direct input of content updates through the college′s web content management system. The level of this participation in content maintenance is determined as needed during site planning with each division or department according to resource availability within that division or department.

Regardless of whether division / department participation in site content maintenance is direct or indirect, each division or department is responsible for making sure all content on the site related to their operational areas is accurate and timely.

Responsibility for site content maintenance is allocated as follows:

  • The Office of Communications is responsible for editing copy as needed and maintaining design continuity, interface usability and graphic standards.
  • Division heads are responsible for factual accuracy, appropriateness, timeliness and provision of current content for all content related to their areas of operation.
  • Individual staff and faculty members within each division or department may be designated as content management system contributors and thereby are responsible for provision and/or input of content specific to their division, department or area of expertise.

Appropriate Use of Rhodes Computing and Telecommunications Resources

All members of the Rhodes community who use these college resources are expected to do so in a responsible and ethical manner. The right to use Rhodes’ computing and telecommunications resources can be revoked if misused or abused. Appropriate use prohibits: commercial activities; creating, displaying, or transmitting threatening, racist, sexist, obscene, or harassing language and/or materials; copyright and licensing violations; violation of personal privacy; acts in violation of federal and/or state laws.

Web content must be directly related to Rhodes’ academic programs or those services at the college that support those programs.

While it is impossible for the college to monitor full accuracy or suitability of materials on all departmental, student organization or individual pages, Rhodes will exercise diligence in dealing with questions of error or impropriety. Such questions may be referred to the appropriate President′s Staff member.

In keeping with Rhodes’ tradition of student self-governance, students are expected to use the Internet in ways consistent with codes of conduct established in the Honor Council and Social Regulations Council and with the Standards of the Rhodes Community. Cases of student violation of these codes in use of the Internet will be heard as is appropriate by either the Honor Council or the Social Regulations Council.


Anonymous (not verified) August 18, 2015

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Software and Intellectual Property Rights

Respect for intellectual labor and creativity is vital to academic discourse and enterprise. This principle applies to works of all authors and publishers in all media. It encompasses respect for the right to acknowledgment, right to privacy, and right to determine the form, manner, and terms of publication and distribution.

Because electronic information is volatile and easily reproduced, respect for the work and personal expression of others is especially critical in computer environments. Violations of authorial integrity, including plagiarism, invasion of privacy, unauthorized access, and trade secret and copyright violations, may be grounds for sanctions against members of the academic community.


Anonymous (not verified) August 18, 2015

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