Academic Standards & Expectations

Academic Integrity

The College believes that each person can learn, notwithstanding one’s age, life history, current circumstances, or past academic experience. Cambridge College is a learning community in which learners experience educational practices that honor and empower them. The College works with students to build the education needed for academic and career success through programs which develop and enhance skills, competencies, attitudes, values and habits of the mind. As students are expected to meet high academic standards throughout their education, they engage experiences of genuine learning that make new learning possible.

Violations of Academic Integrity


     Plagiarism is the use of another’s work, thoughts, or language without giving credit. Cambridge College students are expected to submit original work in courses and will not summarize, copy, or use the work of another person or source without proper acknowledgement. Plagiarism is dishonest and a serious academic offense.


Cheating appears in multiple forms such as:

  1. Unauthorized use of notes, texts, or other aids during an exam or in completing course assignments
  2. Copying the work of another student
  3. Submitting the same assignment for more than one course, subject to faculty discretion
  4. Sharing student work with a group when such sharing has not been authorized by the professor

Any breach of academic integrity is grounds for a grade of F/No Credit in academic courses and/or dismissal.

See full policy.

Academic Credit and Time Management

A semester hour of credit is a quantification of student learning, representing the amount of time a typical student is expected to devote to learning the course material. In traditional classroom settings, the expectation for undergraduates is generally two hours of outside work for every hour spent in class. For graduate students, less time is typically spent in class and more time is committed to outside study — generally three hours for every hour spent in class. Including both class time and study time, a semester hour of credit for the average student entails approximately 45 hours of time devoted to active learning. A three-credit course, therefore, involves approximately 135 hours of commitment during the term.

At Cambridge College, course structures often vary considerably from this traditional norm, but the learning expectations are always comparable. The amount of time in class varies both with the nature of the course and its level, undergraduate or graduate. Some students progress through the course material at faster rates than others, and selected courses demand intensive interactions over shorter periods of time than a term. Certain courses entail extensive residencies, like the Summer Institute's summer sessions (formerly known as the National Institute for Teaching Excellence). Other courses build directly on students’ professional experience, perhaps foreshortening the time required to master new insights and competencies. Still other courses require an extensive internship or practicum. It is important to be aware of these differences in planning your time, but as a guideline for the average, total amount of learning commitment that may be expected in a course, it is useful to keep in mind the average of 45 hours per credit.