Faculty Handbook

Faculty Handbook

Dear Faculty:
I want to personally welcome you to SCC, whether you are brand new or one of the many faculty members who have been contributing your knowledge and talents for many semesters. Because we have a commitment to provide students with high-quality, up-to-date programs and courses, we absolutely depend on people like you to bring new skills and a fresh outlook to the teaching and learning process. While you are here, we want to provide you with all the support and help you need to make your experience as rewarding as possible. Teaching at SCC is truly an exciting process. If you are doing it for the first time, I hope you will be "hooked" and will decide that you want to do it over and over.
One of the things that makes teaching at SCC so exciting is that it is "student-centered." What that means is that the teacher is not simply a subject-area specialist whose job is to bring new knowledge and skills to the students. If that were the case, anyone with the credentials or the experience could be a teacher. Student-centered teaching means bringing to the student new knowledge and skills. It means teaching students, not simply delivering content or instructions.
Remember your own learning experience. Remember the "Aha!" of discovering something for the first time, or the first time, those Xs and Ys in algebra suddenly transformed into real numbers. Then think of the teacher who brought you to that exhilarating discovery. THAT is what teaching at SCC is all about.
I offer you my personal invitation to call me if there is anything I can do to help you meet the challenge of teaching. When the magic works, your students will never forget it . . . nor will you. And I, and the rest of SCC, appreciate what you do.                 

Thomas R. Brooks, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President, Instruction and Student Services

Faculty Handbook - Getting to Know SCC

About SCC

Vision 2017

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Instruction and Student Services Strategic Plan

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Instruction and Student Services Strategic Plan

Mission and Goals




College Vision, Mission and Goals


Southwestern Community College will be an educational gateway for enriching lives and strengthening our community.

Mission Statement

Southwestern Community College is a learning and teaching institution offering high-quality, innovative instruction and support, which promotes student achievement, academic excellence and economic development.

Institutional Goals

The College Will... 
  1. Provide excellence in learning and teaching for transfer, career education and literacy development in an accessible format.
  2. Provide comprehensive and effective services to enroll students and support their success.
  3. Strengthen student understanding of career pathways leading to success in career and academic planning.
  4. Generate support for students, faculty, staff and programs from internal and external sources.
  5. Enhance SCC's positive image throughout - and beyond- our service area.
  6. Provide engaged leadership in workforce and economic development.
  7. Identify, acquire and maintain resources to support the vision, mission and goals of the college.
  8. Attract and retain quality employees and provide for their professional development.
  9. Provide the services, programs and infrastructure to ensure a safe and secure learning environment.

SACSCOC Accreditation


Southwestern Community College (SCC) is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates.  Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097, or call 404.679.4500 or see www.sacscoc.org for questions about the accreditation of Southwestern Community College.  Inquiries regarding programs and services of SCC should be directed to the College; the Commission on Colleges should be contacted only for questions relating to the College's accreditation.   

SCC received initial accreditation to award associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in 1971.

In addition, many of the College's programs hold accreditations, approvals, or licensures from specialized accrediting associations. A current list of accreditations is provided in the College Catalog.

Values for Teaching Excellence

Photo of instructor and students at Macon Campus

Each faculty member at Southwestern Community College ...

  • Inspires students to become independent learners.
  • Promotes the development of critical-thinking skills.
  • Respects each student as an individual.
  • Fosters a sense of cooperation and community in and out of the classroom.
  • Recognizes the use of technology to enhance the teaching-learning process.
  • Engages students in learning for practical use and personal growth.
  • Provides an innovative and accessible educational experience.
  • Demonstrates an excitement about teaching and learning.

LEARNING COLLEGE - Placing Learning First

Learning Colleges embed learning in the institutional culture as the highest priority.

As decisions are made, two basic questions are asked. These questions are:

  1. Does this action improve and/or expand learning?
  2. How do we know this action improves and/or expands learning?

From: Creating More Learning-Centered Community Colleges by Terry O’Banion


Who's Who / Phone List

SCC Maps and Locations


Jackson (Sylva) Campus

447 College Drive
Sylva, NC 28779
800.447.4091   •    800.968.4091
Fax: 828.339.4613

Macon Campus - Cecil L. Groves Center

44 Siler Farm Rd
Franklin, NC 28734
Fax: 828.349.9692

Jerry Sutton Public Safety Training Center  

225 Industrial Park Loop
Franklin, NC 28734
Fax: 828.369.2428
Swain Center 

60 Almond School Road
Bryson City, NC 28713
Fax: 828.366.2008


You may park in any legal parking space. However, the parking area next to Oaks Hall is reserved (decals required) from 7 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday-Friday, for faculty/staff, cosmetology patrons, and handicapped parking. Not being able to find a legal space is not considered an excuse for violation. Parking decals may be obtained from the College Information Center. Be sure to register your vehicle and display your decal. If you do not have a decal or if you do not park in a legal space, you might receive a Notice of Violation.
Parking permits can be obtained at New Student Orientation or the College Information Center (in the Balsam Building). 

Food on Campus

Jackson Campus - Food and drink vending machines are located in several spots around campus.
Macon Campus - There will be food vendors on campus Monday-Thursday in the morning and afternoon. In addition, vending and drink machines are located on the lower-lobby level. No food or beverages are to be brought into classrooms, labs, shops, or computer labs.

Alcohol/Tobacco on Campus


Tobacco-Free College Procedures

Southwestern Community College is a tobacco free campus. Enforcing the tobacco free policy will be a responsibility of the entire campus community. A primary objective is to educate individuals about the tobacco free policy with the expectation of compliance.

I.  Faculty Responsibility
College administrators, faculty and staff shall remind everyone of the tobacco free policy. Employees should use tact and good judgment in dealing with possible violations.

Faculty and staff who observe non-compliance of the tobacco policy have the following options:
  1. Remind the person involved of the tobacco free policy and thank them for future compliance.
  2. Provide student’s name to the College Conduct Officer.
  3. Contact the instructor or staff member of the student involved in the noncompliance so they can make an announcement in their class or department reminding students of the tobacco free policy.
  4. Report employee use to your supervisor.

II.  Students
A progressive compliance procedure is implemented for students. Early awareness of the policy should be a component of orientation and campus visits.
  1. First Offense - The student will be given a verbal warning.
  2. Second Offense - The student will be referred to the Conduct Officer and a written warning will be issued.
  3. Third Offense – The student will be referred to the Conduct Officer for a disciplinary conference that may result in suspension from campus.

III.  Employees
Failure to comply with the tobacco free policy is considered a serious willful offense. Employee violations will be handled through the regular supervisory discipline process. Continued violation of the policy after a supervisor conference will be considered insubordination that may lead to suspension or dismissal.

IV.  Visitors
Visitors to campus who fail to comply with the policy shall be given polite reminders of the policy along with a request that they comply in the future. Visitors to planned College events should be notified of the policy through event publications.

Cross Reference: Policy 3.2.5 – Food, Beverage and Tobacco Products

Adopted: January 2012

Adopted: February 2014

Academic and Professional Development Calendar

Emergency Policies and Procedures

Textbooks and Getting Paid


Textbooks (Policy 3.03.05)

The academic faculty at SCC chooses textbooks. For information about the textbooks currently in use, please contact your department coordinator / chair.  Policy 3.03.05 clarifies how to dispose of / donate copies of textbooks no longer in use. 


​If you are an adjunct instructor, you will need to sign an employment agreement for the course(s) you teach each semester.  The amount to be paid will be listed on your agreement. 
The pay period will cover through the 15th of each month.  Payday is the last working day of each month. Payroll checks will be available for pickup in the College Business Office until 1 p.m. on the monthly payday. If your check is not picked up by 1 p.m., it will be placed in the U.S. Mail.

Class Types/Format

All classes, regardless of location, type or format will have a Blackboard Course shell that can be used for communication with students, posting of materials and other instructional items.  Be sure to make this course shell available at 8:00am on the first day of your class (if you plan for students to access it.)  For step by step instructions, click here for a tutorial from the E-Learning webpage. Students will automatically be enrolled in your Blackboard course shell on the first day of the term. 

Seat-based classes are traditional classroom-based courses with no outside computer requirement.
Web-enhanced Instruction will be delivered primarily using traditional classroom instruction but will be enhanced through the use of online or other electronic media. 
Web-enhanced courses allow students (at the discretion of the instructor) to complete a portion of the course requirements electronically. 
This amount must not exceed 50% of your class time. 

Hybrid (HY)
A hybrid course is one in which a substantial amount (more than 50% of class meeting times) will be completed online via Blackboard and e-mail. Students may be required to come to campus on designated dates and times.
Online / Web-Centered
Online / web-centered instruction will be delivered online / over the World Wide Web. A web-centered course is actively led and monitored by the instructor via the Internet. Web-centered courses do not require on-campus lecture time.
Early College
Southwestern Community College (SCC) proudly partners with Jackson and Macon County Public Schools to support three Early College High Schools in order to serve our area students.
  • Blue Ridge Early College - Located in Cashiers on the Blue Ridge School Campus
  • Jackson County Early College - Located in Sylva on Southwestern Community College’s Jackson Campus
  • Macon Early College - Located in Franklin on Southwestern Community College’s Macon Campus
Early College High Schools (ECHS) are defined as small, autonomous schools generally located on a college campus that provide accelerated education to a wide range of high school students, typically beginning in the ninth-grade year.  This five-year program offers students the opportunity to concurrently earn a high school diploma and an Associate’s Degree or technical certificate. These courses may run as online, hybrid, web-enhanced, or seat-based classes. 
For more information, visit the Early College webpage.
Community Link – Interactive Television (ITV)
ITV is an interactive television network that virtually connects properly equipped educational sites in Western North Carolina through fiber-optic cable. 
Instruction will be delivered in a traditional classroom setting. 
ITV courses require on-campus attendance on all scheduled dates. 

Essential Classroom Needs

Each division has an administrative assistant who is happy to assist with classroom needs.  In addition, should you have a maintenance emergency while teaching, this individual is your first point of contact.   
Copying / Word-Processing Support – Please give the division administrative assistant sufficient time to complete help with your request.
Mailboxes – If your class meets on one of our physical campuses, you will be provided a mailbox in your divisional area. Please check it each time you come on campus for class. 
Office / School Supplies – Dry Erase markers can usually be found in the classroom.  If you need anything else, contact your division’s Administrative Assistant or Dean.
Technology / AV Needs – The majority of classrooms are equipped with the following:
  • Data projector and screen
  • Internet-connected desktop computer
  • Desktop monitor
  • Room-size speakers
  • Integrated DVD player (We are not able to ensure that your classroom will be capable of playing a VHS tape, so please make every effort to contact the content provider and inquire about updating to a current digital media, such as DVD, MP4, YouTube, etc.) 
  • Connectivity for guest laptops (for student presentations)
If you are assigned to a room without a necessary piece of equipment (or would like to request access to an Elmo / overhead projector), please contact your department's Administrative Assistant or Dean for assistance.
Laptop Carts – Laptop carts are available for checkout in several buildings on campus:
  • Burrell Faculty Workroom (2nd Floor) – 2 Laptop Carts
  • Balsam (Rm 253 B – for Biology, Chemistry and Physics classes; Rm 211 – for Health Sciences classes) – 2 Laptop Carts
  • Macon Campus – Front desk – 2 Laptop carts and 1 iPad cart
Reservation and check-out procedures vary, so check with the Administrative Assistant in your area for clarification. You will be responsible for returning the carts (and their contents) in working condition. In general, be sure to reserve early as they are requested often.
Telephone Each classroom should have a phone installed. Dial (9) to obtain an outside line to place a local telephone calls. To place a long-distance call pertaining to your class or students, dial (0) for assistance from the switchboard operator.
Need help? 
Should you encounter difficulty with any of the AV equipment included in your room, please submit a Help Desk Work Order

Faculty Handbook - Learning-Centered Teaching


Learning Colleges embed learning in the institutional culture as the highest priority.

As decisions are made, two basic questions are asked:
  1. Does this action improve and / or expand learning?
  2. How do we know this action improves and / or expands learning?
From: “Creating More Learning-Centered Community Colleges” by Terry O’Banion

Planning Your Course


The following numbered steps will be key decisions to help you plan and develop your instruction.

1. Identify Student Learning Objectives/Outcomes

Key Decision:  Outcomes or objectives will help to identify what you want students to learn in your course.
  • Identify Learning Objectives and incorporate then into your course syllabus.
  • Use action verbs that follow Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy.
  • Describe a skill or competency, using an action verb, when discussing outcomes or objectives.
  • Write outcomes that are observable and measurable.
  • Write clear, concise, and precise outcomes.
  • State outcomes as a single performance.
  • Describe the OUTCOME, not the learning process.
  • Describe the learner’s performance, not the instructor’s.

2. Choose the Content

Key Decision:  How will you choose the content and structure of your course?
Examine the textbook and other resources and then select and disseminate the content.
Content may be organized as follows:
  • Topical
  • Conceptual
  • Chronological
  • Survey

3. Design the Learning Activities

Key Decision:  How will you organize learning activities to assist the students in achieving the outcomes?
Design learning activities for the course.

The Cone of Experience

Edgar Dale’s Cone of Experience is a model created in the 1960s. It exposed that learners retain more information by doing rather than by hearing or observing. His research led to the development of the Cone of Experience.  For more information visit https://www.etsu.edu/uged/etsu1000/documents/Dales_Cone_of_Experience.pdf

By Jeffrey Anderson [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Sample Activities
  • Lecture
  • Large-group discussion / problem solving
  • Demonstration
  • Small-group discussion / problem solving
  • Debate

4. Develop a Learning Sequence

Key Decision:  How do you determine in what order activities in the course should be done? 
Design a learning sequence, week-by-week, for the entire term.
Use a calendar for the semester to provide for the following:          
  • The order in which content should be presented
  • Due dates for tests or quizzes, written assignments, readings, etc. 
  • Holidays for the college

5. Plan to Assess Student Learning

Key Decision:  How will you know if students learn?
Develop a plan, which includes the following, to assess student learning:
  • Exams, quizzes
  • Oral presentations
  • Research papers
  • Performance of skills
  • Projects
  • Writing assignments
  • Student portfolios

6. Design a Grading System

Key Decision: How will you grade?
Choose the percentage or point system and be prepared to explain it clearly on your syllabus.
Example: Percentages 
Example: Point System
Percentages give flexibility on the number and type of activities in a course.  Students will begin with an A – but may lose it as the semester develops.
Point systems are more precise. Students are not “assured” of a grade until they achieve the point required.
Tests = 50%
Quizzes = 20%
Research project (or presentation) = 20%
Application Log = 10%
Total – 100%
Oral Presentation = 200 points
4 Unit Tests = 400 points
Homework (8 of 10) = 140 points
EXAM = 160 points
Application Log =  100 points
Total – 1,000 points

Here are a few key SCC Policies to support your grading practices:
  • Official grades are available online at the end of each semester. The College does not mail grades to students. Students enrolled in curriculum courses will be graded by the letter-grade system and assigned a grade point average (GPA) for each semester. Instructors inform students about their specific grading scales. The College does not have a uniform grading scale.
  • For further clarification, please consult SCC College Policy - Grading (Policy 6.02.02)

7. Develop Course Policies, Procedures and Practices

Key Decision: How will you clarify student rules / regulations?
Set clear course policies; please explore the tabs for examples.
Academic Integrity
Be sure that you are clear in your syllabus about your expectations regarding citation of work. (Please refer students to Section A under “Standards of Student Conduct” in the Student Handbook.) Example Syllabus policies follow:
Our class depends on a high level of integrity from each participant. You will collaborate with fellow students as you complete many of the activities in this course. Balanced, responsible collaboration on projects and drafts is encouraged and is often essential.  However, the final product of a formal project is a measure of your individual achievement, so you are responsible for assuring that you are not misrepresenting another student’s or source’s work as your own. If you are ever in doubt as to the expectations for individual work or for level/type of collaboration, please ask.  It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Note:  Please refer to the SCC Student Handbook for a detailed explanation of the college’s academic-integrity policy.
Attendance - Census Activity

To meet state auditing and Financial Aid requirements, students must complete a specific activity by the course Census Date, which occurs 10% into the term. (http://www.nccommunitycolleges.edu/sites/default/files/legal/sbccc/code/1g_sbccc_200.93.pdf)

To demonstrate appropriate attendance and punctuality, students should complete the following activities:
  • Attend all meetings of each class. / Complete all online assignments.
  • Be on time and ready to work. / Meet all class deadlines.
  • Remain in class for the duration of the period, except in cases of emergency or approved class breaks. 
At SCC, we boil this requirement down, and require the following:
  • Every student regardless of location or mode of delivery must attend at least one face-to-face class meeting or complete one assignment/activity for an online class by the census date or will be reported by the instructor as “never attended.”
  • A student who has never attended a class by the ten percent (10%) date is no longer enrolled in the class and will not earn credit or receive a tuition refund for the course.
  • To locate the census date, login to MySCC and go to WebAdvisor / Faculty/Class Roster. The Census date is located on the top, gray table under the column entitled "Census." The Registrar's Office will ask you to record Web-Attendance according to this date.
  • Students in online / web-centered courses must actively participate in the course; logging in or emailing the instructor is not sufficient for the census activity.  Student completion of an activity must be recorded as the first item in the Grade Center.
  • To locate the census date, login to MySCC and go to WebAdvisor/Faculty/Class Roster. The Census date is located on the top gray table under the column entitled "Census". The Registrar's Office will ask you to record Web-Attendance according to this date.  Logging in or emailing the instructor is not enough to count towards the census activity.  Students in online courses must actively participate in the course by producing work as state auditors may need access to the activity to confirm compliance. Student completion of the activity must be recorded as the first item in the Grade Center.
  • E-Learning recommends using one of the following activities for use in determining census attendance:
    • Syllabus Quiz - A syllabus quiz is a great way to ensure your students read your syllabus.  Make sure your quiz questions are meaningful and cover items you want to highlight, such as grading policy, response times, etc.
    • Discussion Board - A discussion board can enhance student engagement as well as record attendance.  Consider a prompt that allows you to get to know your students and for them to get to know each other.  Your prompt may ask students for a brief introduction or for what they are most excited about in the course (after looking at the course schedule). 
  • See Policy 6.02.01 for further clarification of the policy. 
Example Syllabus policies follow:
The attendance policy in the SCC Student Handbook states, “Any student who has not attended at least one face-to-face class meeting or completed one assignment/activity for an online class by the 10 percent date of the class will be reported by the instructor as “never attended.” A student who has never attended a class by the 10 percent date is no longer enrolled in the class and will not earn credit or receive a tuition refund for the course.” 
Attendance – Administrative Withdrawal
Students receiving financial aid must earn their aid, and they do so by attending past the 60% point of the semester.  Since we disburse aid each semester before it is fully earned, we often have students who do not stay in school long enough to earn the aid they received.  If the aid is not earned, a portion must be repaid by SCC to the federal or state aid programs.  SCC will then attempt to collect the funds from the students.

It is extremely important that the Financial Aid Office is aware of students’ attendance in their classes throughout the semester so that our initial aid disbursement and subsequent disbursements will be accurate.  This can only happen when the faculty members are regularly withdrawing students who have stopped attending. 
TImeframe Financial Aid Process Instructor Role
Semester Start Financial aid awards allow tuition and book charges, but are not yet disbursed. Timely and accurate census rosters help ensure that students are not overpaid.
Course Census Roster Due Date Financial Aid Office removes aid for hours students Never Attend (NA grade). Advisors should be aware that any classes added after this date are not included in aid calculations.
3 weeks Financial aid census date—students’ hours are locked for  aid calculations. Students who have not attended for two weeks need to be withdrawn immediately so they are not overpaid aid.
5 Weeks Grant aid and first portion of student loan aid are disbursed/ posted to students’ accounts to pay towards charges. Students who have not attended for two weeks need to be withdrawn immediately so they are not overpaid aid.
6 Weeks First financial aid refund checks are mailed, after another review of withdrawal data. Students who have not attended for two weeks need to be withdrawn immediately so they are not overpaid aid.
Balance of weeks (1) Student loan funds are disbursed twice more, checking for withdrawals each time.
(2) Financial Aid Office reviews enrollment records looking for students with full withdrawals to calculate aid to be returned.
Continue to process Administrative Withdrawals for students who have not attended for two weeks.  (A missing withdrawal from one instructor will cause delays in returning funds and notifying students.)
End of Semester Financial Aid Office reviews all final grade reports for any additional students to calculate for unearned aid. An F grade should only be assigned to students who attend to the end of the semester or past the last date for Administrative Withdrawals.

At SCC, we boil this requirement down, and require the following:
  • Any student who has been absent for two consecutive weeks in a 16-week term or one week in shorter academic terms will be administratively withdrawn from the course.
  • A student in an online or hybrid course will be administratively withdrawn following two consecutive weeks in a 16-week term (or one week in shorter academic terms) of missed assignments, missed attendance (for hybrid), and lack of communication with the instructor regarding course participation. Consistent with policies establishing attendance in online courses, logging into a course site but failing to perform the aforementioned actions does not constitute attendance.
  • Under extenuating circumstances, a student may petition, in writing, the instructor, for reinstatement in the course upon demonstrating the capacity and likelihood of satisfactorily completing requirements as indicated on the course syllabus.
  • See Procedure – Administrative Withdrawal Procedures
Example Syllabus policies follow:
Any student who has been absent* for two consecutive weeks may be administratively withdrawn from the course. Tuition refunds or credits will not result from an administrative withdrawal. You would be considered absent from class if you missed a class meeting, a week's assignment and / or discussion board posting. 
Disability Services -
The federal definition of a disability includes a person who has the following characteristics:
  1. A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities,
  2. A record of such impairment, or
  3. Is regarded as having such impairment.
The determination of whether an individual has a disability under ADA is not based upon the name or diagnosis of the impairment, but rather upon the impact of that impairment on the life/learning of the individual.
At SCC, we are committed to providing equal access to education for students with documented disabilities, and the College is committed to working with students to accommodate their educational development.
The College’s Student Disability Services Coordinator accommodates and facilitates the provision of services to students with documented disabilities.  A student may voluntarily register with the Student Disability Services Coordinator by completing the necessary forms and providing the necessary documentation. It is the responsibility of the student to make his or her physical or mental disability known and to timely request reasonable academic or physical accommodations.  Persons with disabilities are still expected to meet the academic requirements of any course in which the student is enrolled.  If a student discloses a disability to you or asks for an accommodation, ask him or her to contact Tonya Bassé , Student Disability Services Coordinator, Room G-15 Oaks Hall, 828.339.4326, t_basse[at]southwesterncc[dot]edu.  Example Syllabus policy, which should be used verbatim, follows:
If you have a disability and will need accommodations in order to have full and equal access to this course, please contact Tonya Bassé, Student Disability Services Coordinator, Room G-15 Oaks Hall, 828.339.4326, t_basse[at]southwesterncc[dot]edu. Modifications or accommodations for disabilities will not be granted without authorization from this office. Accommodation requests can be made at any time in the semester; however, early contact is strongly encouraged.
Inclement Weather and Missed Classes -
There are times that extreme / adverse weather conditions that might affect the personal safety of students, faculty, and staff cause college and academic administration to cancel or delay the time for classes to begin.  In addition, illness and other unforeseen events may cause you to miss a scheduled class.  Each student and faculty member must evaluate individual circumstances to determine if it is safe to attempt to attend college that day.
When instructional time is missed for unforeseen circumstances, it is your responsibility to complete the following actions:
  • Contact students using your preferred method of communication. (Seek assistance from your division’s administrative assistant as needed.)
  • Post a sign on the door (for seat-based classes) or an announcement in Blackboard (for Web-Enhanced, Hybrid, or Online /Web-Centered classes) explaining the situation to students. (Please contact the divisional Administrative Assistant for support.)
When instructional time is missed for any reason, it is your responsibility to complete the following actions:
  • Provide make-up instructional activities that are comparable to the learning experience for your students.
  • Instruction may be made-up by rescheduling classes or by other alternatives, which may include extra assignments, individual conferences, online assignments, etc.
  • Documentation must be completed in regards to missed instructional time and kept on file in the dean’s / director’s office
Consider how you would handle either of these scenarios and provide general policies / procedures in your syllabus.
Example Syllabus policies follow:
In the event of bad weather, please check the college Website and/or local TV stations to check on the college delay or closure. Classes start at 10 a.m. on a delayed schedule. If the college is closed, you should work on assignments and be prepared for us to catch up during the next class. 

(For Online or Hybrid Courses)
In the event of inclement weather, our course (or the online potion of our course) will be conducted as scheduled. Closures or delays announced for the SCC campus will not apply to online instruction.

A student whose normal access to the Internet is interrupted by inclement weather (for example, because of a power outage) is expected to make an effort to meet course deadlines. However, individuals must make decisions to protect their own health and safety if conditions make it unsafe to travel. A student who cannot reach a location with Internet access should contact the instructor as soon as possible.

8. Write the Syllabus

Key Decision: How will you communicate expectations to students?
Write a Student-Centered Syllabus. 

A detailed course syllabus gives students an immediate sense of what the course will cover, what work is expected of them, and how their performance will be evaluated. This document is a faculty-developed document and should be provided to the students on the first day of classes (but no later than the first week of classes). The syllabus allows you to customize the course to fit your particular course requirements and style while honoring the content of the course.
Before the syllabus came a course outline.  Both are baseline documents that describe the core components of the course. However, the outline will be the same regardless of the number of faculty teaching the course. This can be described as an institutional document. The document is kept on file in the dean’s office. See your supervisor if you want to review the outline.
Your syllabus is your individual way of approaching the content described in the course outline. There are some very good reasons why we require a syllabus:
  • It is pedagogically sound. Letting students know what the course expectations are helps students.
  • Having a plan frees you to be creative. You don’t have to think about what happens next, so that you can concentrate on how it will happen.
  • On the rare occasion when a student feels treated unjustly, your syllabus is an easy way to clear up a misunderstanding.
Be sure to include the following:
  • Instructor Information
    • Name and Availability
    • Contact information, such as office location, hours, e-mail, phone, and URL
  • Course / Section Information
    • Term & Year – (for example, Fall 2012)
    • Course Number
    • Course Title
    • Catalog Course Description – (including prerequisites and/or co-requisites)
    • Tentative schedule of coursework (or information about how to access this information in the online course shell)
  • Course Objectives or Competencies
  • Textbook Information – (Be sure to indicate which are required and/or recommended and their ISBN numbers.)
  • Materials – (for example, discs, tools, etc.)
  • Grading Information
    • Grading Policy (How will you grade, what about late work, etc.?)
    • Grading Scale (How does a student earn an A or B, etc.?)
    • Method of evaluation (tests, papers, etc.) to include the percentages or weights for assignments/activities
  • Required Course Policies / Procedures
    • Attendance Policy (must be clear, specific, and reasonable; this should include requirements, consequences, and make-up work procedures)
    • Withdrawal Date and Procedure reminder
    • Academic Integrity Policy Statement — (should be clear and specific, and the consequences should be appropriate)
    • Disability Services Policy Statement
  • Consider including a student signature page to verify receipt of syllabus
Here is a list of syllabus statements to get you started.  (You will need to be logged into your SCC Account to access).

9. Evaluate the Course and Your Teaching

Key Decision: How will you know how well the course is designed, how your students are experiencing it, and how well you are teaching?
Plan an evaluation of the course before you start, along the way, and at the end.

Before you start:
  • Online / Web-Centered, Course-Readiness Review - To ensure the consistent quality development of web-centered courses, Southwestern has established a course review process for new web-centered course offerings.  This program ensures that courses are reviewed prior to the start of a term based on a checklist developed by the E-Learning Committee.  To learn more about the Web-Centered, Course-Readiness Review, click here.
 Along the way:
  • Classroom Assessment Techniques (CATs) are generally simple, non-graded, anonymous activities designed to give you and your students useful feedback on the teaching-learning process as it is happening. For more information, please visit the following:
  • Classroom Observation
    • Supervisor Observation (1st Term)  - In addition to your own classroom assessment, your class will be visited during your first term by your supervisor.  He or she will be providing feedback on class organization, instruction, and interaction with students.
    • Open Classroom - Peer Observation (Ongoing)  - If you would like to enrich your teaching by observing someone else’s class, or if you are willing for a colleague to observe your class, the Open Classroom is for you. The focus is for the observer to expand her or his repertoire of teaching methods by watching a colleague teach. It was Yogi Berra that said,“You can observe a lot just by watching.”
  • Self-Assessment
 At the end:
  • Student Evaluations of Classroom and Lab / Shop Instruction are administered in all courses each semester. The compiled responses of this course survey will be shared with your dean AFTER final grades are assigned.  Your dean will, in turn, share the results with you. All comments are typed prior to distribution in order to protect student anonymity.

Learning-Centered Teaching

Five Characteristics of Learner-Centered Teaching

  1. Learner-centered teaching engages students in the hard, messy work of learning.
  2. Learner-centered teaching includes explicit skill instruction.
  3. Learner-centered teaching encourages students to reflect on what they are learning and how they are learning it.
  4. Learner-centered teaching motivates students by giving them some control over learning processes.
  5. Learner-centered teaching encourages collaboration.
Weimer, PhD, Maryellen. "Five Characteristics of Learner-Centered Teaching." Faculty Focus. 8 Aug. 2012. Web. 22 June 2015. <http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/effective-teaching-strategies/five-....
Traditional Paradigm Emerging Paradigm
  • Emphasis on teaching
  • Emphasis on parts
  • Isolated knowledge and skills
  • Students as passive recipients
  • Teacher as information giver
  • Sorting and weeding students
  • Learning as an individual activity 
  • Only teacher-directed learning
  • Homogeneous grouping
  • Emphasis on product and content 
  • Primary emphasis on form
  • Decontextualized learning
  • Language as separate skill 
  • One answer-one way, correctness
  • Western bias
  • Criteria, goals given by instructor; not explicit or public before instruction
  • ​Tests that test
  • Emphasis on learning
  • Emphasis on the whole
  • Integrated knowledge and skills
  • Student as active constructor of meaning
  • Teacher as co-learner and facilitator
  • Equal access to instruction and content for all
  • Learning as a social activity - collaboration enhances learning
  • Student-directed learning
  • Heterogeneous grouping
  • Emphasis on process, metacognition - learning how to learn
  • Primary emphasis on meaning
  • Learning grounded in “real-world” contexts
  • Reading, writing, thinking, and communicating across the curriculum
  • Open-ended, non-routine multiple solutions
  • Multicultural, global views
  • Shared development of goals and criteria for performance
  • Tests that teach

Reference: Gibbs, Jeanne, Tribes, A New Way of Learning And Being Together, Windsor: CenterSource Systems, LLC 2001.

Managing Your Classroom

Some links require NCLive Login / password info.  If you’re not sure, click here.
Tips for General Classroom Management
Effective Classroom Management
Students are not registered until they turn in registration forms and pay all fees. If a student is not on your class roll but has been attending class, direct that student to see his or her adviser, a dean, or the registrar immediately.
If you have more students in your class than you have seats, arrangements can be made to move your class to a larger room. Please let your supervisor know if this happens so that he or she can help you find another room and so that we will know where you are.
Creating a Peaceful Classroom
  • Have a genuine interest in your students.
  • Communicate classroom rules clearly.
  • Be objective, not judgmental.
  • Show that you are human.
  • Address problem behavior directly and immediately.
  • Adopt a collaborative approach.
SCC has an obligation to provide a safe place for its students to learn and be successful and a safe place for its employees to work.  When any college employee has a concern about a student’s potential to have a negative consequence to the safety of employees or students or when a student’s behavior is identified as interfering with the student’s ability to be successful, these concerns should be reported. The Standards of Student Conduct policy (Policy 6.03.06), outlines day-to-day expected student behavior, and can also be found in the Student Handbook.
The Retention Alert (RA) program allows SCC faculty and staff to identify students who are at risk and to initiate immediate intervention with the students as soon as problems are identified. This process enables SCC to track all contacts and intervention efforts and share information appropriately with the student and others who can help the student to be successful. Our goal is to improve student success.
Risks being monitored follow:
  • Class attendance
  • Class activities, such as failing tests, not completing assignments, poor writing skills, lack of participation, and overall quality of class work
  • Other issues – in-class behavior, life issues, etc.
  • Problems with Academic Dishonesty, cheating, or behavior – contact your supervisor immediately and place a report in retention alert
You can access Retention Alert by logging into MySCC, clicking on the Student Concerns tab, and then clicking on the Student Concerns access.
FERPA - In Practice (Policy 6.04.07)
SCC respects the privacy and confidentiality of student information consistent with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), which regulates the release of student information and affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. The primary communication regarding student information occurs with students. However, the College recognizes and appreciates that family and others have a role in supporting students and may have an interest in a student issue. With the student’s permission, academic information may be released to a third party or a support advocate may be present with the student and participate in a productive conversation related to an issue in question. 
The process for communicating student information follows:
  • FIRST, ask the student for verbal permission before going further in a discussion of his or her record.
  • The emphasis is on PRODUCTIVE discussion—this means a civil discourse.
  • You have the RIGHT to stop the discussion at any time if it ceases being productive.
  • You can REFER the student to your dean, the Dean of Students, the Registrar, or the Executive VP for Instruction and Student Services. Let us know—we have your back! 
For assistance, contact Cheryl Contino Conner, Dean of Students, 828.339.4245.

Additional Resources:
FERPA Faculty Orientation PowerPoint
The following individuals have been designated to the Student Assessment Team:
Conduct Officer for the SCC Jackson campus – Cheryl Contino-Conner, Dean of Students 339.4245, cheryl[at]southwesterncc[dot]edu
Conduct Officer for the SCC Macon campus – Dr.  Cheryl Davids, Dean of Macon Campus, 306.7018

Student Assessment Team (SAT) – Cheryl Contino-Conner, Dean of Students, Chair
·       Lor Clancy, Human Services Technology/Substance Abuse Concentration Program Coordinator
·       Tracy Chapple, Instructor, Psychology
·       Cheryl Davids - Dean of Macon Campus
·       Tonya Basse, Disability Services Coordinator
·       Avery Brown or Chris Collins – Campus Security
·       Barb Putman,  Dean of Arts and Sciences
·       Danell Moses,  Dean of Career Technologies
·       Mitch Fisher,  Dean of Health Sciences
·       Peter Buck, Counselor
Depending on the nature of the case, the SAT may call upon expertise of other members of the SCC community to provide details on the case of a specific student or for consultation regarding on-risk assessments and appropriate interventions.  
The employee should should submit a report using the Student Concerns Portal that includes a description of the concern. When appropriate, SAT will be convened to review the concern and develop an appropriate plan of action. The SAT is comprised of members from across the campus chosen based on their relative experience in dealing with these types of behavioral issues and their responsibilities within the college.  
The SAT will determine if there have been any additional warning signs or reasons for concern (such as code violations or classroom incidents), classify the level of threat, and develop a plan of action. Examples of action can include referrals to appropriate campus offices and, when necessary, off-campus agencies.
The SAT members will use their best professional judgment to review this matter. However, SAT members cannot be expected to predict future behaviors of individuals and, therefore, are held harmless in the event a student does repeat a harmful behavior.

Retaining Students and Fostering Learning


Creating Dynamic Content

Dynamic Content doesn't just mean creating something that will "wow" your students.  Dynamic Content is relevant to students.  It engages students.  It makes them want to know more.  How are you making your content relevant to students?  How are you ensuring that your students are engaged in your course?  And why does it matter if the content is relevant and engaging?  

One way to engage students and make content relevant is by adding instructor-generated videos, PowerPoint presentations, interactive lessons, and active learning.  This works for any course offered here at SCC

​For more ideas and support on engaging students, visit the E-Learning webpage or call E-Learning and schedule an appointment.  

Field Trips

Field trips (Policy 5.02.01) can be an engaging way to help students achieve your course outcomes.  If you decide that you would like to conduct a college-sponsored field trip for the purpose of enhancing the student’s educational experience, begin by consulting your department chair / coordinator and/or dean for input into your planning process.  Once you have developed the structure, be sure it includes the following procedures:
  • Instructors or supervising staff must initiate an Off-Campus Activity Release form for each college-sponsored field trip. Each student must complete and sign the form, indicating that he or she is taking the field trip(s) at his or her own risk. Students under 18 must have parent/guardian signature.
  • This form is to be forwarded to the Dean / Director and the Executive Vice President for Instruction and Students Services for approval.
Click here for the Off-Campus Activity Release form.

Honors Contracts/Program


The Honors Program at Southwestern Community College is designed to:

  • Challenge high achieving and highly motivated students to purposefully engage in Honors coursework. Honors coursework is designed to enrich and expand the expectations of the traditional college course.
  • Intentionally focus on academic excellence including critical thinking, communication skills, and academic inquiry. Honors coursework generally will be more writing, research and/or project intensive.
  • Engage students and faculty across all disciplines.
  • Encourage and support Honors students in leadership and service to the college and the community.

 To participate in the Honors Program you will need to submit the Honors Contract.  You can download the form in .pdf or .doc format.

For more information contact:     
Bethany Emory

Faculty Handbook - Beyond the Classroom


As a faculty member, you also might be assigned the role of academic advisor.  The primary responsibility of an academic advisor is to guide students in making wise selections of course offerings with careful attention to institutional policies and degree requirements. This may include the following:
  • Setting academic goals
  • Creating academic plans
  • Registering for classes / adjusting schedules
  • Evaluating progress in achieving goals
Advising faculty in the Career Technologies, Health Sciences, and Public Safety Divisions will have access to advisee contact information via WebAdvisor.  Faculty will be asked to maintain an advisement record for each student. (Consult Procedure for further details.) 
The Arts and Sciences Division maintains two University Transfer Advising Centers (UTACs), one on each of the Jackson and Macon campuses.  A UTAC coordinator will consult with you about scheduling available hours and accessing student files from the college servers. 

Click the links below to visit resources found throughout the SCC website.  These links will open in a separate tab / window.

Academic Advising Policy – 5.01.05

Academic Advising Procedure –

University Transfer Advising Center



Grading Policies and Procedures

Official grades are available online at the end of each semester. The College does not mail grades to students. Students enrolled in curriculum courses will be graded by the letter-grade system and assigned a grade point average (GPA) for each semester. Instructors inform students about their specific grading scales. The College does not have a uniform grading scale. Credit by Examination

​The student received credit for the course through proficiency examination (only available in selected courses identified by program coordinators / department chair). This symbol counts as hours earned but not as hours attempted. No more than one-half of the required credit for a degree or a diploma may be earned through "Credit by Exam" unless otherwise approved by the Executive Vice President for Instruction and Student Services.
The applicable testing fee will apply, and successful completion of the exam will result in an S grade for the course. Credit by examination may be earned prior to enrolling in a course or up to the 10% point if a student is enrolled in the course. The testing fee is $25 and must be paid prior to taking the test.
  Grading Polices and Resources:

Office Hours / Scheduling

Student Emergency Funds

The Student Emergency Fund was created by the SCC Foundation to assist SCC students who encounter an unforeseen financial emergency which would otherwise prevent them from continuing their education at SCC. For more information, click here - https://www.southwesterncc.edu/SEF.


Student Records / Reports

The 10% Report (also called Attendance Report) in WebAdvisor will be open to faculty the first day of the semester. This is an official report subject to review by State Auditors. Therefore, it MUST be accurate and submitted on time. This report documents student attendance, and faculty must use the following symbols:
  • AU - Enter to denote that the student is auditing the course.
  • S - Enter to denote that the student has successfully challenged the course through proficiency examination.
  • E - Enter in the date column the date on which the student attended class the first time.
  • A - Enter in the date column(s) each date the student is absent through the 10% reporting period.
  • No Show - Check this box if the student never attended class.
Southwestern Community College respects the privacy and confidentiality of student information consistent with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), which regulates the release of student information. SCC faculty members have a responsibility to retain and dispose of a student’s record according to the guidelines published in the Records Retention and Disposition Schedule by the NC Community College systems.
Any student-record information scheduled for disposal MUST be shredded. Specific requirements include the following:
  • Student advisement folder  – includes individual student folders containing interview forms, student test profiles, aptitude test scores, approved schedule forms, and copies of Permanent Academic Records
    • Destroy (shred) in office after one year.
  • Medical/Health records – records used in the admission of students to selective health-science programs
    • Maintain in a secure file or office by the lead faculty member in each program.
After the student graduates from or terminates the program, the records are transferred to the Registrar’s Office to become a part of the student’s permanent Transcript Records File.

Student Records Policy – 6.04.07

Faculty Handbook - Resources and Support Services

Resources for Students

Career Center
Computer / Technology Support 
Disability Services
Financial Aid 
Learning Assistance Centers       
Jackson Campus
Macon Campus 
Library Materials (Via MySCC – Login Required)
Tutoring                                                                                                                                                                                                     Registrar
Student Orientation
Student Support Services
Writing Across the Curriculum 

Resources for Faculty

Center for Teaching Excellence 
Computer / Technology Support
Learning Assistance Centers
Jackson Campus 
Macon Campus 
Library Materials (Via MySCC – Login Required)
New Faculty Mentor Program Guide
Organizations and Committees Professional Development                                                                                                                                                                Registrar 
Writing Across the Curriculum