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Section 8. Student Support Services:
Technology Policies

Walden University is dedicated to serving all students, alumni, instructors, and staff (“users”) with the appropriate use and support of technology within the organization. These technology policies provide expectations for conduct and behavior by applying guiding principles to the use of the internet; the university’s computer networks, website, and email service; the myWalden University Portal, Our Community, online classroom; and other facilities, connections, hardware, and software provided by Walden or used in connection with the user’s interaction with the university or its affiliates (collectively, “University Systems”). Walden is committed to conducting its affairs in a responsible and ethical manner consistent with its education, research, scholarship, and social change missions.

By accessing the Walden University student portal (myWalden), and the Office 365 suite of products provided by Walden (including Outlook and other services), you agree to be bound by the Information Technology Policies, Code of Conduct, and other relevant policies contained in the Walden University Catalog and/or Student Handbook. These university systems are solely intended for use in connection with the academic, administrative, social, and operational activities of Walden University, its students, affiliates, and university-approved organizations. It is your sole responsibility to ensure that all coursework, class selections, and any required data, applications, requests, or materials are submitted in a timely manner. Walden will not be responsible for the failure of any communications network, internet connection, hardware, or software, whether or not provided by Walden University that prevents or delays any such submission. Users of the Walden’s systems agree that there is no expectation of privacy or confidentiality for messages or documents, and Walden reserves the right to access any communications transmitted or stored using the university systems. Any information placed on Walden Web pages, or uploaded to or transmitted via Walden University’s email service, the student portal, or other university system must be suitable for viewing or distribution to both the Walden University community and the public. Violation of any Information Technology Policy, including the Acceptable Use Policy (“AUP”) shall be considered a violation of Walden Code of Conduct and may lead to sanctions including termination of access to the university systems, dismissal from the university, and legal action where necessary.

These policies may be revised by Walden from time to time. Users are responsible for keeping apprised of changes to these policies and complying with all such changes.

Technology Requirements

Email Policy

As an online university with students all over the world, Walden uses email to communicate important information to students and the rest of the community. Walden University provides all students with a dedicated WaldenU email address. Students are required to check this email account regularly to ensure they are receiving and/or responding to all communications. Walden’s goal is to keep students informed and engaged with the university throughout their Walden experience. Therefore, it is imperative that students check their accounts and read each message in its entirety.

Walden uses Microsoft Office 365 as its technology platform. Walden does not rely on a platform provider’s standard template agreements, but rather, the university negotiates custom agreements that sufficiently comply with all relevant regulations protecting the personal information of Walden students, including FERPA. Use of Walden email and the student portal is in accordance with Walden’s Acceptable Use Policies, and student information is never sold to third parties.

Students, faculty, and staff must use their WaldenU email addresses to communicate with one another regarding university business. Walden’s administrative offices may also send communications to students’ personal email addresses.

In the event a student communicates with Walden using his or her personal email address, Walden faculty and staff can respond to that personal email, as well as copy the student’s WaldenU email account, and state in the email reply that it is recommended students use their Walden email when communicating with Walden.

Email communications are subject to all applicable university policies. All email sent by students to Walden must comply with Walden policies on proper email communications as indicated in the Acceptable Use Policy section.

Information Policies

Information Collection and Use

Walden University is the sole owner of the information collected on its site unless an agreement of shared ownership has been established. The university will not sell, share, or rent this information to others without prior consent of the user to whom that information pertains; provided, however, that Walden may share any information with its employees, independent contractors, affiliates, or agents who provide educational, technical, operational, or administrative products or services to or on behalf of the university.

Policies of Walden regarding privacy, do-not-call requests, and use of intellectual property are described in the Legal Information section of this Walden University Student Handbook.

Security of Information

The university takes every precaution to protect users’ information. When users are asked to enter sensitive information via the web (such as a credit card number or a Social Security number), that information is encrypted and is protected with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Web Server Certificates.

All reasonable efforts are made by the university to ensure that all information submitted electronically is secure from modification or deletion by anyone other than the responsible information provider. The university also takes steps to protect user information offline. Only those employees needing the information to perform a specific university-related job are granted access to personally identifiable information. The servers storing personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

Nonetheless, all users acknowledge and agree that there is no expectation of privacy or confidentiality for documents and messages transmitted by or stored on university-owned equipment or systems. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, users acknowledge that electronic records and documents, including email, may constitute a public record like other documents subject to disclosure.

Users of electronic systems should also be aware that in addition to being subject to authorized access, the security of electronic transmission and storage systems cannot be guaranteed, and such systems may be vulnerable to unauthorized access and modification by third parties. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, receivers of electronic mail documents should check with the purported sender if there is any doubt about the identity of the sender or the authenticity of the contents, as they would with print documents. Users of electronic mail services should be aware that even if the sender and recipient have discarded their copies of an electronic mail record, there might be backup copies of such electronic mail that can be retrieved.

The university reserves the right to access any communications transmitted or stored using the university’s network. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the university may access electronic mail and data stored on the university’s network of computers for purposes including but not limited to the following:

  • Troubleshooting hardware and software problems
  • Preventing unauthorized access and system misuse
  • Retrieving business-related information
  • Investigating reports of violation of university policy (including without limitation the Acceptable Use Policy) or local, state, or federal law
  • Complying with subpoenas, warrants, or other legal requests for information
  • Rerouting or disposing of undeliverable mail
  • Other purposes deemed necessary by the university

Walden University may also retrieve electronic mail messages delivered to university account holders, or otherwise prevent distribution of a message to university email accounts, if the university determines in good faith that distribution of the message violates local or federal law or university policy, or places the university at risk of violation of privacy-related laws.

Retention Policy

Walden University will retain any email messages or other data as required by the laws of the United States and the State of Maryland, or such other state in which the university may maintain a data center from time to time.

Unless otherwise required by applicable law, Walden does not commit to retain any email messages or other data for any specified period.

No user shall have any expectation that any email messages or other data transmitted by, received by, or concerning such user will be retained by the university for any particular period of time.

Acceptable Use Policy

This Acceptable Use Policy (“AUP”) shall govern all uses of University Systems, along with the internet and other electronic communications networks, and the content transmitted to, from, or by any such systems or networks.

Violations of this AUP shall be considered violations of the Code of Conduct, as described in this Walden University Student Handbook and amended from time to time, and shall be subject to the sanctions provided for in those policies.

The policy includes the following:

Use of Electronic Communication Networks and the Internet

Electronic communication networks, the internet, and any University Systems are not to be used to cause harm, no matter how minor, to any individual, entity, or facility.

Users are expected to protect Walden’s good name and reputation as detailed in the university’s Code of Conduct.

  • Prohibited Uses
  • Permitted Uses; Personal Use
  • Excessive Use

Prohibited Uses

The following activities are specifically prohibited:

  • Engaging in illegal activities
  • Libeling or slandering any person
  • Cracking passwords and systems
  • Harassing other users
  • Sending harassing, unwelcome, or threatening messages
  • Sending unauthorized anonymous messages
Privacy Violations
  • Invading another person’s privacy
  • Accessing and/or using accounts of others without their permission
  • Disclosing passwords to others
  • Monitoring electronic communications without authorization
  • Reading, copying, altering, or deleting someone else’s files without that person’s permission
  • Copying copyrighted materials without authorization
  • Using illegally obtained software on the system
  • Forging messages
Disrupting or Causing Damage
  • Destroying or damaging equipment, software, or data belonging to others
  • Disrupting service to other users or the system
  • Contributing to system attacks, denial of services, and other malicious uses of the network and systems
Engaging in Commercial Activities
  • Contributing to unwelcome and/or unwarranted commercial pressure
  • Sending bulk unsolicited messages
  • Giving away or selling information about accounts to allow other non-owners to access or use accounts

Permitted Uses; Personal Use

The University Systems are solely intended for use in connection with the academic, administrative, social, and operational activities of Walden University, its affiliates, and university-approved organizations.

Users may make incidental personal use of the University Systems, subject to the policies and limitations contained in this AUP and elsewhere in this Walden University Student Handbook, and provided that such use does not interfere with university operation of information technologies or electronic mail services, burden the university with incremental costs, violate any policy of the university (including without limitation this AUP), or interfere with the user’s employment or other obligations to the university.

Excessive Use

The university further reserves the right to limit throughput or amount of data transferred, and deny or terminate service to a user, without notice, if the university believes such user is using the email or another University System in any manner prohibited herein or that adversely impacts the university’s network or service levels. Walden University reserves the right to protect its network from harm, which may impact legitimate data flows, by disconnecting users or limiting their access to the network in the event of any violations of these provisions. Walden University also reserves the right to treat excessive use of the University Systems as a material violation of the AUP and the Code of Conduct.

Content Standards

Any information placed on Walden web pages, or uploaded to or transmitted via Walden University’s email service, the online student community (Our Community), or other University System, must be suitable for viewing or distribution to both the Walden community and potentially the rest of the world.

In addition to the content standards contained in this Acceptable Use Policy, users must also comply with academic content requirements contained elsewhere in this Walden University Student Handbook.

  • Copyrighted material may not be posted without the written permission of the copyright holder. All materials found on the web should be assumed copyrighted unless a disclaimer or waiver is expressly stated. Quotations must be properly cited.
  • Licensed or trademarked material may not be placed on the web without prior written consent from the owner.
  • Copyright and trademark violations on the internet are pervasive. It is always better to err on the side of caution. If unsure of the copyright or trademark status of any particular material, it is better to not copy and post that material.
  • Pictures and videos may not be placed on the web without the written permission of the people in the picture or video. Every person has a right to privacy, which includes the right to restrict the use of her or his own image.
  • Activity on the Walden network is permitted for business done on behalf of the university or its organizations. The university’s computing and telecommunications facilities and services are to be used for university purposes only and not for the benefit of private individuals or other organizations.
  • It is not permitted to run a private business using the university’s network.
  • Walden’s name must not be used in ways that suggest or imply the endorsement of other organizations, products, or services.
  • It is not permitted, in any email or other message transmitted via the University Systems, for users to give the impression that they are representing, giving opinions, or otherwise making statements on behalf of Walden or any unit of the university unless expressly authorized to do so. Where appropriate, the following explicit disclaimer shall be included: “The opinions or statements expressed herein are my own and should not be taken as a position, opinion, or endorsement of Walden University.”
  • Fund raising and advertising may be conducted on the university’s network only for the benefit of Walden University.
  • Reselling network IP services over the university’s network to individuals or organizations not affiliated with Walden is strictly prohibited.
  • Linking to other sites in the classroom environment is acceptable with permission from Walden systems operators.
  • University Systems may not be used to transmit any material that is unlawful, libelous, defamatory, slanderous, obscene, pornographic, indecent, lewd, harassing, threatening, harmful, invasive of privacy or publicity rights, abusive, inflammatory, or otherwise harmful or offensive to others. Using any University System to harm, or attempt to harm, minors in any way is prohibited. The University Systems may not be used to transmit materials of a threatening nature, including death threats, threats of physical harm, or material that threatens or encourages destruction of property.

Violations of Policies and Resulting Sanctions

Violations of this Acceptable Use Policy may be deemed violations of the university’s Code of Conduct and may result in the imposition of any sanctions permitted by the Code of Conduct or other provisions of this Walden University Student Handbook, including without limitation, suspension or termination of access to University Systems or dismissal from the university.

Where violations result in suspension or dismissal of a user during the course of an academic term, or result in termination of a user’s access to University Systems required to complete and/or receive a passing grade in one or more classes, user shall have no right to any refund, in whole or in part, of prepaid tuition or other expenditures (such as for textbooks and other course materials).

Students are encouraged to report information concerning instances in which any provision of the Acceptable Use Policy has been or is being violated to their associate dean/executive director, or their associate dean’s designees, or a member of the information technology staff. The university reserves the right to remove and/or lock out any person who abuses any internet or electronic communication network services (including mailing lists, bulletin boards, online databases, electronic mail, and online courses) in violation of this Acceptable Use Policy.

Nothing in this section, or elsewhere in this Walden University Student Handbook, is intended to limit any rights or remedies Walden University may have under applicable law.

Indemnification of the University

Each user agrees, by virtue of access to the University Systems, to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless the university for any suits, claims, losses, expenses, or damages, including but not limited to litigation costs and attorney’s fees, arising from or related to any content transmitted by such user, the user’s violation of the AUP or other university policy applicable to the University Systems, or otherwise arising out of the user’s access to or use of the University Systems.

User further acknowledges and agrees that there is no expectation of privacy in any messages or documents transmitted by or stored on any University System, and will hold Walden University and its affiliates harmless for any claimed violation of privacy or confidentiality asserted by any third party with whom the user communicates using the university’s email service or other University System.

Limitations of Liability; Disclaimer of Warranty

Walden University makes no representation or warranty of any kind regarding the availability of University Systems, the internet, or any communications network. It is the student’s sole responsibility to ensure that all coursework, class selections, and any required data, applications, requests, or materials are submitted in a timely manner. Walden University shall not be responsible for the failure of any communications network, internet connection, hardware, or software, whether or not provided by Walden University, that prevents or delays any such submission.

Walden University provides no assurances that email or other materials will be sent or received using the University Systems, and shall not be liable for missing messages or any consequences of that message not being sent, delivered, or stored.

Walden University shall not be liable for the content of any email message, attachment, or other material sent, received, or stored on any University System, or for any consequences of that message, attachment or other material being sent, delivered, or stored.

Walden University shall not be liable for any damage caused by viruses or other hostile code delivered through the University Systems.

All access to and use of all university systems is provided on an “as is” basis. Walden University makes no warranties of any kind, express or implied, regarding the University Systems, any connecting networks, any hardware or software used in connection with the University Systems, or any content transmitted over the University Systems, including the implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement, all of which are expressly excluded to the fullest extent permitted by law.

Termination of Systems Access

A user’s right to access the university’s email and other University Systems shall terminate upon

  1. graduation or other separation from the university by a student; or
  2. termination of the employment of a faculty member, administrative staff member, or other employee of the university.

A graduating or withdrawing student’s email address shall be rendered inactive within 90 calendar days of the student graduating or, as long as the student was not at the time of withdrawal suspended from the university or under investigation for Code of Conduct, withdrawing from the university. In all other cases, a student’s email address shall be rendered inactive immediately upon such student’s withdrawal or dismissal from the university.

Use of Third-Party Contractors

Walden University reserves the right to engage third-party independent contractors to perform installation, maintenance, customer support, operational activities, system management, data processing and storage, and any other services in connection with one or more University Systems.