2021-2022 University Catalog 
    May 27, 2024  
2021-2022 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

University Policies

Americans with Disabilities Act

The University complies with all applicable provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and state and local disability laws, as applicable. An individual with a disability is defined as any person who (1) has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities; (2) has a record of such impairment; or (3) is regarded as having such an impairment. Accommodations are tailored to meet the needs of each individual student and are intended to comply with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the code of ethics set forth by the Association of Higher Education and Disabilities, and Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (as amended in 2008). Student accommodations are managed through the Office of Student Services; policies and processes for Disability Services are described elsewhere in this catalog.

Campus Safety Manual

The Office of Operations publishes a Campus Safety Manual. The Campus Safety Manual includes general campus safety policies and procedures, the Campus Safety Manual includes the following policies and procedures, as well as additional information:

  • University’s Drug and Alcohol Awareness policy
  • University Title IX/Sexual Misconduct policy
  • Clery Act - In compliance with the Clery Act, SCU distributes an annual security report to the campus via University email. Paper copies of this report are available upon request from the Department of Campus Safety 16200 Amber Valley Drive, Whittier, California 90604. Phone: (562) 947-8755 x 515.


Students may access the Campus Safety Manual on mySCU, the University’s intranet.


Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) commonly known as the Buckley Amendment, provides students with certain rights with respect to their educational records. Students include only individuals who have attended the institution; applicants are not considered students until they have attended the University.

Definition of Education Records

Education Records are defined as records that contain personally identifiable information (PII) directly related to a student and maintained by the University or by a party or organization acting on its behalf. It can include written documents and electronic media.


Education Records exclude:

  • Financial information furnished by the student’s parents in support of an application for financial aid.
  • Confidential letters of recommendation that were placed in the student’s file prior to January 1, 1975.
  • Confidential letters of recommendation concerning admission, employment, or honorary recognition, for which the student has waived access.
  • Sole possession records (i.e., personal notes made by a faculty member or counselor that are accessible only to that person and are not shared with others).
  • Law enforcement or campus security records.
  • Employee records (unless contingent upon attendance).
  • Medical records.
  • Alumni records (i.e., records that are created or received after an individual is no longer a student in attendance and are not directly related to the individual’s attendance as a student).

Directory Information

Directory Information may be disclosed without the student’s consent. The University designates the following as Directory Information:

  • name
  • address
  • email address
  • telephone number
  • date and place of birth
  • date of admission
  • photographs
  • enrollment status (full-time/part-time)
  • degree program/program of study
  • dates of attendance
  • honors and awards
  • participation in officially recognized activities and sports
  • degree completion date including whether or not a degree was completed


Students may request that the University not disclose any or all of the types of information designated as directory information. Students must do so in writing to the registrar.


Student Rights

The student has certain rights with respect to their educational needs. If a student is claimed as a dependent by either parent for tax purposes, then either parent may also have access to their child’s education records.


These rights include:


  1. The right to inspect and review the student’s education records maintained by the University within forty-five days of the day the University receives a request for access.
    • Students should submit a written request to the registrar identifying the specific record to which they are requesting access. The registrar will notify the student of a time and place where the records may be inspected and reviewed. 
  2. The right to seek an amendment to the student’s education records if the student believes it is inaccurate or misleading, or otherwise a violation of the student’s privacy rights under FERPA.
    • Students should submit a detailed request in writing outlining the requested amendment, clearly identifying the part of the record the student wants changed and specifying why it should be changed. The registrar will notify the student in writing if the amendment request is approved or denied within 15 days of the request.
    • If denied, the student may appeal the decision within 15 days by submitting a request in writing to the registrar. The University will process the appeal within 15 days.
    • Please note: The University is not required to consider requests for amendment that seek to change a grade, disciplinary decision, or the opinions or reflections of a school official or other person reflected in an education record.
  3. The right to provide written consent before the University discloses personally identifiable information (PII) from the student’s education record, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. Generally, the University must have written permission from the student to release non-directory information from a student’s education record. 

    FERPA authorizes disclosure of education records, without consent, to the following parties under the following conditions:
    • School officials with a legitimate educational interest. A school official is typically a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, or support staff position (including security and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted to perform a task; a person serving on an institutional governing body or committee including the Board of Regents; a volunteer or contractor outside of the University who performs an institutional service or function for which the school would otherwise use its own employees and who is under the direct control of the school with respect to the use and maintenance of PII from education records, such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent or a student volunteering to assist another school official in performing a task; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing official tasks.
    • A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill the official’s professional responsibility.
    • Other Colleges, Universities, and/or schools to which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
    • Specified officials for audit or evaluation purposes.
    • Appropriate parties in connection with financial aid to a student.
    • Organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the University.
    • Accrediting organizations.
    • To comply with judicial order or lawfully issued subpoena; notification to the student is made before complying with the subpoena.
    • Appropriate officials in cases of health and safety emergencies.
  4. The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failures by SCU to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is: Student Privacy Policy Office, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C., 20202.


Language of Instruction

The language of instruction is English.


Liability Disclaimer

The University disclaims liability for any damages, bodily or otherwise, incurred by students on or off campus as a result of athletic and other extracurricular activities.

Identity Verification for Online Resources and Services

In accordance with Federal Requirement 34 CFR §602.17(g), the Interregional Guidelines for the Evaluation of Distance Education, and the WSCUC Distance Education Review Guide, Southern California University of Health Sciences (SCU) ensures vigorous security and verification of student identity by having processes in place through which the institution establishes that the student who registers in a distance education or online education course or program is the same student who participates in and completes the course or program and receives the academic credit.

The University employs a three-tiered system of verification of student identity. The first tier includes unique student login and protected password access to Canvas, SCU’s learning management system, and other academic systems and tools, such as test-taking software. The second tier of identity verification requires students to present a government-issued photo ID during midterms, final examinations, and other high-stakes tests. The third-tier verification includes monitoring software that proctors exams via video and audio recording of the students. Some faculty also assign recorded audio and visual presentations or perform assessment in-person for some online courses. Finally, the University has adopted Turnitin, plagiarism detection software that helps instructors determine viability of a student’s writing and notifies instructors of any plagiarism or related academic dishonesty detected in written assignments.

Non-Discrimination Statement

In compliance with federal, state, and local government requirements, the University does not discriminate against any individual on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic characteristics, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related individual conditions, medical condition (as defined by state law), military status, political affiliation, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law in the administration of its educational programs, school administered programs, publications, or in its employment practices. The University is committed to compliance with federal and state laws, regulations and policies governing equal access and equal opportunity.

Program or Institutional Closure

In the event that the University opts to discontinue a program, the University will make its best effort to teach-out the program of study for all currently admitted and enrolled students; no new students will be admitted to the program. In the unlikely event the university ceases operations, the University will submit a teach-out plan to its regional accrediting agency, the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) for approval per WSCUC requirement. The University will notify all students about the closure and their options for completing their programs per WSCUC requirement.


In the event the University closes without a teach‐out plan, WSCUC will work with the U.S. Department of Education and appropriate state or international equivalent agencies, to the extent feasible, to assist students in finding reasonable opportunities to complete their education without additional charges.

Animals on Campus

The University prohibits animals on campus other than certified Service Animals. Service Animals are defined as either a dog or, in rare circumstances a mini horse, that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability. No other type of animal is considered a Service Animal, as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act as amended.

Credit Hour Policy

Federal regulations define a credit hour as an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement. Generally, a credit hour shall be the equivalent of one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out of class work each week over a 15-week trimester or its equivalent over a different period of time. 


The following examples clarify the amount of work expected per week for a 15-week trimester or the equivalent amount of work over a different period of time for other academic activities to earn one credit hour (unit):


  • Lecture courses where there is one hour of direct faculty instruction and two hours of student work completed outside of the classroom each week.
  • Laboratory courses where there are two hours of direct faculty instruction, and one hour of student work completed outside of the classroom each week.
  • Practicum courses where there is one hour of direct faculty instruction in an active learning setting such as a technique course, live anatomical study, examination skills course, etc., and two hours of student work completed outside of the classroom each week.
  • Online/distance/blended courses where there are three hours of work representing a combination of instruction, discussion, group work, and individual student work.
  • Work complete outside of the classroom includes time spent studying, participating in open labs, engaging in online research, reviewing coursework online, participating in online forums or other online discussions, reviewing related materials online, etc.
  • Internships/field experiences where there are two hours of documented patient care/work completed by the student/intern, and one hour of student/intern work completed outside of patient care.

Consumer Information and Student Right to Know

In accordance with federal regulations set forth by the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 1965, as amended, the University makes available consumer information to all prospective and enrolled students. This information appears in this catalog and on the University’s website. This includes information related to tuition and fees and estimated costs of attendance.

Transferability of Courses to Another Institution

The University cannot guarantee the transferability of courses to another University as those decisions are made by the receiving institution. Students are responsible for determining the transferability of courses to another college or university.