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Computer Lab Policy

Guidelines for Use of APSU Computer Labs
(approved by Lab Subcommittee of the Technology Committee)
revised April 21, 2003

Purpose

This document describes the different types of computer facilities available, defines who may use these facilities, and provides guidelines for acceptable use.

These guidelines are intended to cover information, which all facilities hold in common. Each facility may supplement these campus-wide guidelines with individual department or unit procedures or protocols to meet specific administrative or academic needs.

Violations of the Guidelines

Disciplinary actions for violating any provisions of these guidelines shall be governed by the applicable provision of the Code of Student Conduct found in the APSU Student Handbook.

Sanctions for violation of these guidelines may include revocation or suspension of computer access privileges in addition to any other sanctions permitted under the Code of Student Conduct and the Tennessee Board of Regents policy on Information Technology Resources [www.tbr.state.tn.us/policies_guidelines/governance_policies/1-08-00-00.htm]

Violations of law may also be referred for criminal or civil prosecution.

Resources covered by these guidelines include host computer systems, personal computers and workstations, computer peripherals, communications networks, software, removable media, and files.

The use of these resources is governed by federal and state law, as well as by Tennessee Board of Regents and Austin Peay State University policies and procedures. The University may monitor access to any of these resources in order to ensure security of its systems and networks and to enforce University policies.

Monitoring and Inspecting of Electronic Records

Electronic records sent, received, or stored on computers owned, leased, or administered by the TBR is the property of the Tennessee Board of Regents. As the property of the TBR, the content of such records, including electronic mail, is subject to inspection by TBR personnel. While the TBR does not routinely do so, the TBR is able and reserves the right to monitor and / or log all network activity of users without notice, including all e-mail and Internet communications. Users should have no reasonable expectation of privacy in the use of these resources.

Description of Facilities

The locations of computer facilities, as well as each facility’s guidelines, procedures, equipment and hours may be found at http://www.apsu.edu/labinfo. In addition, this information shall be clearly posted inside and/or outside each facility.

Different types of computer facilities exist on this campus. Some APSU computer facilities are designated as open access, while some are specialized departmental facilities used for classes and, occasionally, function as open access. Some facilities have posted hours and are staffed by attendants, while others have no posted hours and are only opened as needed. Open labs include campus network and Internet connections, which require a sign-in or identification procedure to ensure that only currently enrolled APSU students use the facility. Users should check each individual facility’s procedures or protocols for specific information.

Users and Their Responsibilities

Access to APSU’s computer labs is limited to currently enrolled APSU students. Exceptions are made for APSU academic pursuits, and approved workshops, seminars, or other special events.

Users are responsible for ethical use of APSU computer resources, including both honesty in their academic pursuits and respect for others who share these resources.

If requested, users should be prepared to sign in and/or may be requested to present a valid APSU picture ID when they enter a computing facility.

Guidelines for Use

  1. Access to resources in computing facilities

    Computers for individual use are assigned on a first-come first-served basis.

    APSU computing and networking resources are limited; therefore, the first priority should be the fulfillment of academic instructional objectives for students using the computer facilities. Users may be asked to justify the academic legitimacy of their activities to lab management. n.b. Users should be aware of state and federal laws governing the distribution and display of obscene materials (refer to section G of these Guidelines which conform to section 7.1 of TBR policy).

    Students engaged in non-academic pursuits may be asked by attendants to relinquish machines for students who need to do work for their classes.

    Some computers are reserved for specific purposes because of special features such as an attached plotter or specialized software. These computers are clearly identified in each facility, and students needing those resources shall have priority on those machines.

  2. Care of computing resources

    Malfunctioning equipment should be reported immediately to the attendant or manager in charge of the facility.

    The consumption of foods and beverages, including bottled water, is prohibited except in designated areas.

    Computers are configured according to the needs of students and faculty/staff. Users must not change hardware or software configuration settings. Users who have suggestions for a hardware or software configuration change should speak to the person who manages the facility.

    Users are expected to exercise good judgment when submitting printing tasks and take proper care of the computers, printers and all other equipment found in the facilities (see section C, below).

  3. Reducing wasteful use of paper and printing supplies

    Users are expected to be conservative in their use of paper and to exercise discretion when printing documents to prevent waste of expensive printing materials. Because color cartridges are costly, users must be prudent when sending print jobs to color printers.

    Users should submit the print command only once to avoid printing multiple copies of a document. Users should allow adequate time to ensure a successful print job before re-sending a print command.

    Users who need multiple copies of a document must use a photocopying machine for duplication of documents. Coin-operated photocopiers are available in the Woodward Library (during library hours) as well as in the Printing Services center at APSU which can be accessed via an exterior door of the Woodward Library building (during normal work hours).

    Users are urged to use the “print preview” command before submitting a print job. Blank pages that appear in the “print preview” result should be deleted before the print job is sent.

    Users should make sure they have sent their printing job to the correct printer. To do this, instead of immediately clicking on the printer icon, users should click the File command in the main menu toolbar and then select “Print,” which will open the Print dialog box where settings can be checked and adjusted before sending a print command.

    Users must only print materials of academic relevance or co-curricular significance.

    Users should notify the lab attendant if the printer has failed to respond correctly after the first print command. If users have submitted an incorrect print job, they should notify the lab attendant so that the attendant can attempt to cancel the job.

    Users should save personal email, web pages and any kind of academically irrelevant materials to removable media, such as zip disks floppy disks, and CD-R or CD-RW disks.

  4. Respect for others using the facilities

    Those using the facilities should work quietly. Loud conversations and disruptive behavior disturb others who are trying to do academic work.

    Users may not encroach on others’ use of computing resources. Such activities include, but are not limited to, sending harassing messages, introducing viruses or anything else which damages software or hardware, and misrepresenting one’s identity in electronic communication.

    Persons who are disruptive in computer lab facilities will be asked to leave immediately. The lab attendant may summon the lab supervisor or the faculty advisor if a student refuses to leave. Campus security may be summoned to the facility if a user poses a threat to the safety of the facility.

    Repeated incidents of disruptive or harassing behavior will result in loss of computer use privileges.

  5. Skills needed to use APSU facilities

    Campus computer labs are primarily self-service facilities. Users are responsible for learning the skills necessary to use the computer applications. Software documentation and manuals may be made available to users in some facilities.

    The lab attendant’s responsibilities include (a) insuring that users properly sign in and sign out; (b) troubleshooting hardware; (c) correcting printer malfunctions; and (d) enforcing these lab guidelines. In addition to these primary responsibilities, attendants may be able to provide limited assistance to users based on the attendant’s knowledge of specific software.

  6. Software and data on APSU computer lab facilities

    Only software owned by or licensed to Austin Peay State University shall reside on campus lab computers.

    All applicable copyright laws and licenses must be observed.

    No software or “freeware” shall be installed on any APSU lab computer without express permission from the facility manager.

    Users must save their work to removable media, such as floppy disks, zip disks, and CD-R or CD-RW disks.

  7. Obscene materials

    The distribution and display of obscene materials is prohibited by the laws of Tennessee (see Tenn. Code Ann. § 39-17-902). Obscene materials are defined under Tennessee law (see T.C.A. § 39-17-901(10)) as those materials which:

    1. The average person applying contemporary community standards would find that the work, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest;
    2. The average person applying contemporary community standards would find that the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct; and
    3. The work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.

    Federal law (18 U.S.C. 2252) prohibits the distribution across state lines of child pornography.

  8. Students with disabilities

    Computers on campus are open for student use on a first come, first served basis. Some facilities provide stations for users with disabilities. When users identify themselves as disabled and request immediate access, they shall be given access to a designated station only if a vacant computer is available for the student who is being relocated.