Acceptable and Unacceptable Use

Because of the richness of the Internet and the College’s information technology resources, it is not possible to catalogue exhaustively all acceptable and unacceptable uses. The lists below are meant to be illustrative. Employees and students should consult with their supervisors or classroom instructors, respectively, about the appropriateness of other uses. In free time areas, users should address questions to lab supervisors or other responsible parties. In deciding what is and is not an acceptable use, there are two overriding principles:

  1. the College’s information technology and telecommunication resources exist to support the College’s mission, and
  2. the College is committed to ensuring a positive learning environment for all members of its community.

Thus, all users are obliged to demonstrate civility in any and all exchanges and postings, including the content of web pages, both official and unofficial. The College reserves the right to remove from its telecommunications networks any content judged to be racist, pornographic, or designed to denigrate members of the College community.

Acceptable Use

  • Gathering and providing research material and data
  • Analyzing research data
  • Preparing course materials
  • Completing class and homework assignments
  • Enhancing coursework
  • Enhancing educational approaches and teaching methods
  • Obtaining and disseminating college related knowledge
  • Developing and administering targeted demographic surveys
  • Using WebAdvisor to register online for courses or to access information about one's own academic performance
  • Using Datatel's Colleague or other institutional software within the scope of one's normal duties.

Unacceptable Use

  • Using the network for gambling, any other illegal activity, or any activity prohibited by the College’s acceptable use and related policies and procedures, including but not limited to violations of copyrights, software agreements and other contracts
  • Using the College systems for commercial or profit-making purposes
  • Altering system software or hacking in any form
  • Gaining unauthorized access to resource entities, including use of others’ passwords
  • Invading the privacy of individuals
  • Posting anonymous messages
  • Creating and displaying threatening, obscene, racist, sexist, or harassing material, including broadcasting unsolicited messages or sending unwanted mail
  • Disobeying lab and system policies, procedures, and protocols (e.g., time limits on workstation usage)
  • Using the network in support of groups outside the College when such use is not in keeping with the mission of the College
  • Creating and using individual web pages not primarily focused on the mission of the College
  • Using Web Advisor to access information about someone other than oneself
  • Accessing data or making use of data in Datatel's Colleague or other administrative systems software not relevant to the scope of one's job responsibilities

Security Breaches

Attempts to alter system software, to bypass security protocols, to introduce viruses, worms, or other malicious or destructive programs, or otherwise “to hack” are expressly forbidden. Any member of the College community, including a student, who intentionally breaches security will be subject to disciplinary action, including suspension and dismissal.

E-Mail Accounts

Students enrolled in credit courses or programs may request an e-mail account through the College’s Website. Generally, e-mail accounts are closed when the student is no longer enrolled. The College may choose to extend e-mail privileges to students during periods of stop-out.

Violations of Acceptable Use and Related Policies and Procedures

Users are expected to notify the Office of Information Technology, classroom instructor, free time lab supervisor, or other responsible party, as appropriate, of intentional or unintentional breaches in access and data security of which they become aware. In addition, employees who are aware of serious violations of acceptable use or related policies and procedures (including malicious tampering, virus infection, or “hacking”) are required to report such activity to their immediate supervisors. In the case of complaints about materials believed to be offensive or otherwise inappropriate, users are encouraged to express their concerns directly to those believed to be misusing the systems and/or to lab supervisors. If the situation persists they should bring the matter to the attention of Public Safety or other responsible parties. Individuals who violate acceptable use and related policies and procedures will be subject to appropriate sanctions, including suspension, dismissal, and legal proceedings. According to the US Copyright Act, illegal reproduction of software or other material is an offense which will subject the violating individual to civil and monetary damages. The use of e-mail or any college system for harassment or criminal activity may result in criminal penalties, including fines and imprisonment.

Bergen Community College Website Guidelines

Bergen Community College encourages the use of the Internet by faculty, staff, and students as both an information resource and as a method of communication. In keeping with this, members of the College community may have Web pages on the Bergen Community College servers. All Web page developers are expected to act responsibly and to adhere to both the Bergen Community College Acceptable Technology Use Guidelines and to the procedures established by the College for Web pages. In particular, the College expects that all members of the College community will

  • obey all applicable federal, state, and local laws, including copyright law;
  • adhere to fair use guidelines;
  • give proper attribution of any sources;
  • not use college hardware, software, or communications for personal profit; and
  • not place any information on the Web pages which reflects negatively on the College or any member of its community.

Further, all Web page developers are expected to make every effort to ensure that the Bergen Community College Web site, and all pages contained within it, is accessible to the visually impaired. The College has the right to monitor all Web pages placed on its servers and remove any that violate the College’s guidelines or procedures. Further, the College has the right to prohibit access to its computing resources to anyone who violates either the guidelines or subsequently established procedures.