Feb 22, 2019  
Undergraduate/Graduate Catalog 2014-2015 
Undergraduate/Graduate Catalog 2014-2015 [ARCHIVED CATALOG] See drop-down menu above to access other catalogs.

Compliance Policies of the University

The material that follows includes a summary of the federal and state legal requirements and specific University policies related to nondiscrimination, harassment, hazing, alcohol and drug policies, safety and security measures, and availability of institutional information. For a copy of the complete policy statements or further information, please contact the appropriate office as indicated in each policy section.

Nondiscrimination, Equal Opportunity, Diversity and Affirmative Action Policy Statement

Bridgewater State University is committed to a policy of non-discrimination, equal opportunity, diversity, and affirmative action.  The University is dedicated to providing an educational, working and living environment for students, employees, and other members of the campus community which values the diverse background of all people.

The University does not discriminate unlawfully in admission or access to, or treatment or employment in, its educational programs and activities on basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, marital or parental status, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, or veteran status. The University prohibits unlawful discrimination or discriminatory harassment on all of those bases.

Discrimination, discriminatory harassment, and retaliation are unacceptable and will not be tolerated at Bridgewater State University.  Such behavior violates University policies and may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination or expulsion.

Complaints or concerns about discrimination, discriminatory harassment, and/or retaliation should be filed with the Director of the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Office (“EO Director”):

Director of the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Office
Bridgewater State University
Boyden Hall, Room 207
Bridgewater, MA 02325
Tel. 508. 531.1486

The EO Director is also the University’s Title IX coordinator.

The University’s official Policy Against Discrimination, Discriminatory Harassment, and Retaliation and Policy Against Sexual Harassment (including Sexual Assault and Sexual Violence) are included in its Equal Opportunity, Diversity, and Affirmative Action Plan (see Section VI and VII and Appendices 2 and 3) (the “Plan”).  The Plan is available here.  The University’s Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence Policy is included in the Student Handbook. Each of these policies is also available upon request from the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Office at (508) 531-1486.

The University is committed to compliance with executive order 11246, Titles VI (Title VI) and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, Title IX of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), Sections 503 and 504 (Section 504) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), the Equal Pay Act of 1963, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, the Violence Against Women Act, Massachusetts General Laws Chapters 151B and 151C, Section 402 of the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, the directives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Board of Higher Education and the Board of Trustees of the University, and other applicable federal, state, and local constitutions, statutes, regulations, ordinances and executive orders, all as amended and as applicable to the University. The EO Director is the Title VI, Title IX, Section 504, and ADA coordinator for the University. 

In addition to the University’s procedures regarding discrimination, harassment and retaliation, if you believe you have been subjected to discrimination or harassment, you may contact the appropriate governmental agencies listed below.

Inquiries regarding federal laws may be directed to:

  • U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, Office for Civil Rights, 5 Post Office Square, 8th Floor, Boston, MA 02109-3921, 617-289-0111, email OCR.Boston@ed.gov. You may also visit the Office for Civil Rights website at https://wdcrobcolp01.ed.gov/CFAPPS/OCR/contactus.cfm.
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, John F. Kennedy Federal Building, 475 Government Center, Boston, MA 02203, 617-565-3200; TTY: 617-565-3204
    Timeframe: Must file within 300 calendar days of alleged incident

Inquiries regarding state laws may be directed to:

  • Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, One Ashburton Place, Sixth Floor, Room 601, Boston, MA 02108, 617-727-3990 (x588 for TTY)
    Timeframe: Must file within 300 calendar days of alleged incident

Resources for Individuals with Disabilities

Bridgewater State University is committed to making its facilities, services, and programs accessible to all students in compliance with applicable law.  Students with disabilities who desire reasonable accommodations should contact the Disability Resources Office to discuss the availability of reasonable accommodations or to obtain documentation guidelines.

Disability Resources Office

The Disability Resources Office offers support and assistance to students with learning, physical or other disabilities.

Disability Resources Office
Academic Achievement Center (located on the ground floor of the Maxwell Library)
Telephone:  508.531.1214 or TTY at 508.531.6113
Email at Disability Resources@bridgew.edu

Reasonable Accommodations

Consistent with federal and state law, reasonable accommodation will be provided to individuals with disabilities.

Individuals with disabilities who desire reasonable accommodations must contact the Disability Resources Office and provide appropriate documentation.  All requests for accommodations are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Services and available reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities with appropriate documentation include, but are not limited to:

  • Testing accommodations
  • Assistive technology
  • Alternate format materials
  • Interpreter services
  • Priority registration

Further information about the services, programs, and policies of the Disability Resources Office may be found at https://www.bridgew.edu/disability-resources or upon request at (508) 531-1214 or TTY at (508) 531-6113.

Please note that there is no automatic continuation of services from high school to the University. If a student with a disability does not request a reasonable accommodation from the Disability Resources Office, it may remain unknown and unaddressed.

Student employees who desire reasonable accommodations in connection with their employment should contact Human Resources.

Campus Accessibility

The University is committed to providing equal and integrated access for individuals with disabilities to all the academic, social, cultural and recreational programs it offers as required by law.

University buildings were built between 1900 and 2013.  The University continually works to improve campus accessibility. Although the achievement of architectural and physical access is a work-in-progress, the majority of the university buildings are accessible and all residence halls are accessible.  All campus parking lots have required handicap designated spaces. The University has accessible travel ways throughout the campus and offers accessible campus bus service. Please contact the Disability Resources Office in order to request information about, and reasonable accommodations related to, accessibility needs.  Students with physical disabilities are encouraged to plan their schedules to permit adequate travel time between classes.

Current and future construction, as well as any periodic work by the Town of Bridgewater, may temporarily impact or disrupt accessible travel routes, building accessibility and/or parking. In an effort to provide the community with as much information as possible regarding such disruptions, Facilities Management & Planning provides regular updates and announcements concerning the disruptions and, working with the Disability Resources Office, provides information to visually impaired students and students with mobility disabilities regarding alternative modes of access.

Students, faculty, staff and guests with concerns or questions regarding discrimination or harassment, campus accessibility or reasonable accommodations may contact the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Office, Boyden Hall, Room 207, 131 Summer Street, Bridgewater, MA 02325; Tel: 508.531.1486, erin.debobes@bridgw.edu.

Accreditation and Licensure

Bridgewater State University is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges Inc., through its Commission on Institutions of Higher Education. Inquiries regarding the University’s accreditation should be directed to the Office of the Provost. Individuals may also contact: Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, 209 Burlington Road, Bedford, MA 01730-1433; phone: 617-271-0022, email: cihe@neasc.org.

The University will make available for review to any enrolled or prospective student, upon request, a copy of the documents describing the institution’s accreditation, approval or licensing. This information, as well as contact information for accreditors and state officials and agencies for filing complaints, may be obtained by contacting the Office of the Provost.

Articulation Agreements

The University will make available for review to any enrolled or prospective student, upon request, a list of institutions with which the University has established an articulation agreement. For more information, contact the Director of Transfer Services.

Health and Safety Information

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act

Bridgewater State University complies with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act), a federal law that requires colleges and universities across the United States to disclose information about campus security and fire safety policies and statistics regarding crimes on and around their campuses and fires in residence halls.

Annual Reports

The University publishes an Annual Campus Crime Report and an Annual Fire Safety Report. The Annual Campus Crime Report discloses information about campus security policies and statistics concerning reported crimes that occurred on campus, on University-controlled property, and on public property immediately adjacent to campus. The Annual Fire Safety Report discloses information about the campus fire safety policies and procedures and statistics of all fires in residence halls. A copy of the reports may be found on the  Bridgewater State University Police Department website or a paper copy of the reports will be provided upon request.


Hazing is unlawful in Massachusetts and is prohibited by Bridgewater State University. Under Massachusetts law, hazing means “… any conduct or method of initiation into any student organization, whether on public or private property, which willfully or recklessly endangers the physical or mental health of any student or other person.” Any person who is a principal organizer or participant in the crime of hazing may be punished by a fine of not more than $3,000 or by imprisonment in a house of correction for not more than one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment. Please refer to the Bridgewater State University Student Handbook for the complete University policy statement on hazing.

Drug and Alcohol Policies

In compliance with the federal Drug-Free Workplace Act and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Amendments of 1989, Bridgewater State University has adopted and implemented programs to prevent the unlawful manufacture, possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by students and employees on University property or as part of any University activities.

The University also prohibits the possession, consumption, storage or service of alcohol by students and/or their guests, except by persons 21 years of age or older who are in transit to (not being consumed, stored or served) or at approved or licensed locations, such as the Great Hill Student Apartments and within the limits of state and local laws and University policy.

The University prohibits unlawful manufacture, possession, use, dispensation or distribution of illegal drugs, narcotics or other controlled substances on University property or at University activities.

Sanctions, up to and including termination or expulsion and referral for prosecution, are imposed by the University on students and employees who violate the University alcohol and drug policies.

For the full content of University policies pertaining to alcohol and illegal drugs and a description of sanctions for violations of the alcohol and drug policies, civil and criminal penalties, health risks of drug and alcohol use, and campus resources and referral agencies, please refer to the Bridgewater State University Student Handbook or contact the Office of Student Affairs, Boyden Hall, Room 106, Tel: 508/531.1276; the Alcohol/Drug Program, Tillinghast Hall, Room 010, Tel: 508.531.2200 or the Office of Human Resources, Boyden Hall, Room 103, Tel: 508.531.1324.

Tobacco-Free Policy


There is considerable evidence that concentrations of smoke are harmful to nonsmokers, as well as smokers.  Findings of the surgeon general indicate that tobacco use in any form, active and passive, is a significant health hazard.  Bridgewater State University has a responsibility to its employees and students to provide a safe and healthy environment. 

Therefore, this policy is intended to eliminate exposure to second-hand smoke, provide an environment supportive of tobacco-free lifestyle, eliminate the risk of accidental fire, eliminate the health risks associated with expectoration from smokeless tobacco, and eliminate the environmental impact of cigarette litter.  It applies to all faculty, staff, students, visitors, customers, vendors, consultants, contractors and their employees. 


This policy covers all Bridgewater State University students, faculty, staff, vendors, contractors, visitors, volunteers, and all other affiliated or nonaffiliated persons.


Bridgewater State University community members and others must abide by this policy.

  1. The use of tobacco is prohibited in all buildings and vehicles owned or leased by Bridgewater State University, regardless of location.
  2. The use of tobacco is also prohibited on all University grounds and in any outdoor area controlled by the University. This includes all University land, parking lots and parking ramps, athletic fields, tennis courts, and recreational areas.
  3. The use of tobacco is prohibited inside any vehicle located on University grounds.
  4. When any person enters the grounds of the University, any smoking material shall be extinguished and disposed of in an appropriate receptacle at the perimeter of the grounds of the University.
  5. No tobacco products or paraphernalia shall be sold or distributed as samples on University grounds, either in vending machines, the student union, or any area on campus.


  1. “Electronic Smoking Device” means any product containing or delivering nicotine or any other substance intended for human consumption that can be used by a person to simulate smoking through inhalation of vapor or aerosol from the product. The term includes any such device, whether manufactured, distributed, marketed, or sold as an e-cigarette, e-cigar, e-pipe, e-hookah, or vape or vaporizer pen, or under any other product name or descriptor.
  2. “Hookah” means a water pipe and any associated products and devices which are used to produce fumes, smoke, and/or vapor from the burning of material including, but not limited to, tobacco, shisha, or other plant matter.
  3. “Smoking” means inhaling, exhaling, burning, or carrying any lighted or heated cigar, cigarette, or pipe, or any other lighted or heated tobacco or plant product intended for inhalation, including hookahs and marijuana, whether natural or synthetic, in any manner or in any form. “Smoking” also includes the use of an electronic smoking device which creates an aerosol or vapor, in any manner or in any form, or the use of any oral smoking device for the purpose of circumventing the prohibition of smoking in this Article.
  4. “Tobacco Product” means any substance containing tobacco leaf, including but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco, hookah tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco, dipping tobacco, bidis, blunts, clove cigarettes, or any other preparation of tobacco; and any product or formulation of matter containing biologically active amounts of nicotine that is manufactured, sold, offered for sale, or otherwise distributed with the expectation that the product or matter will be introduced into the human body by inhalation; but does not include any cessation product specifically approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in treating nicotine or tobacco dependence.


www.lifescopeeap.com LifeScope-Employee Assistance Program,
Information about smoking programs offered through the Employee Assistance program can also be found on the Human Resources website.



Violations of this policy may be grounds for referral for University disciplinary action. 

Policy Questions or Concerns

Questions or concerns about this policy should be directed to the Office of Human Resources. Students who have questions or concerns should contact the Office of Community Standards.

Vaccination Requirements

All full-time students (undergraduate students taking 12 credits or more and graduate students taking 9 credits or more) must provide proof of:

  • 1 dose of tetanus diphtheria and pertussis vaccine (Tdap) within the last 10 years or Td within 5 years for undergraduate students.  For graduate students a Tdap within 10 years is recommended, however a Td within 10 years will satisfy the law. As of 2015, the Tdap within 10 years requirement will apply to all full-time students.
  • 3 doses of hepatitis B vaccine*
  • 2 doses of measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine* after the patient’s first birthday and after 1957 (or 1 dose of MMR if born before 1957)
  • 2 doses of varicella (exempt if born before 1980 in the United States) for undergraduate students. The varicella regulation does not apply to graduate students until September of 2015
  • A negative tuberculosis (TB) skin test, (or if skin test positive, a negative chest x-ray or proof of treatment) is required of all students from countries with high rates of TB.  Refer to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health web link:  http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/docs/dph/cdc/tb/endemic-country-list.pdf  

In addition, newly entering residential students must provide:

  • A certificate confirming of 1 dose of meningitis vaccine within the last 5 years OR a signed waiver declining vaccination at this time. A student, or the student’s parent or guardian, if the student is a minor, may opt to sign a waiver which details that the student has received and reviewed information about the risks and dangers of meningococcal disease, has elected to decline the vaccine. Such a waiver must also be submitted at least two weeks prior to the beginning of classes.

    Bridgewater State University recommends meningitis immunization for all students (even though all students are not required by law to receive it).

Proof of immunization must be provided by a physician, health organization, or a prior school and must include the dates (month and year). Immunization requirements apply as well to international students attending or visiting classes as part of our academic exchange program.

In addition, all full-time students (including full-time graduate students) must submit a completed student health history and immunization report form to Health Services. Massachusetts immunization laws apply to full-time students of all ages.

*Serologic proof of immunity will be acceptable (though often costly). Serological proof of immunity is an alternate way to prove immunity. Serological tests must be done by your primary care physician and requires blood to be drawn, sent out and analyzed, usually taking at least 2 weeks for results. Serological tests can be costly, may not be covered by insurance and often come back negative (which means no immunity). Students with negative serologies must be immunized and provide documentation of the immunization(s).

Policy on Protection of Human Subjects in Research and the IACUC Animal Welfare Policy

For information on the Policy on Protection of Human Subjects in Research and the IACUC Animal Welfare Policy, see the Institutional Review Board.

Voter Registration Forms

In compliance with the Higher Education Act and Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 51, Sect. 42E, the University provides voter registration information to students.

The University makes available Massachusetts voter registration forms to all students enrolled in a degree or certificate program and physically in attendance at the institution. Massachusetts residents can obtain forms at the Campus Center Office and information booth.  Additionally, forms may be obtained by writing or calling the Massachusetts Elections Division, Room 1705, McCormack Building, One Ashburton Place, Boston, MA 02108, 617.727.2828 or 1.800.462.8683; or through the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts website.

Out-of-state students who want to vote in their home state must use either a mail-in form supplied by an election official in the home state or the federal mail-in affidavit of voter registration. Voter registration forms can be downloaded at the U.S. Election Assistance Commission website. If allowable by their home states, student may register online at rockthevote.org.

Student Right to Know - Disclosure of Institutional Retention Rates, Graduation Rates, Transfer-Out Rates, Diversity, Equity in Athletics, and Graduate and Professional Education Placement

Bridgewater State University makes information regarding graduation rates, retention rates, transfer out rates, and diversity available in compliance with the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended. Please contact the Office of Institutional Research, Boyden Hall, Room 201, Tel: 508.531.1704 to request this information.

The Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act Report for Bridgewater State University can be found at http://ope.ed.gov/athletics/.  This tool has been designed by the Office of Postsecondary Education of the U.S. Department of Education.  The data used by this website is derived from the OPE Equity in Athletics Disclosure Website database and consists of athletics data that are submitted annually as required by the Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act (EADA), via a Web-based data collection, by all co-educational postsecondary institutions that receive Title VI funding (i.e., those that participate in federal student aid programs) and that have an intercollegiate athletic program.  Paper copies of the most recent EADA Report is available by contacting the Bridgewater State University Athletics and Recreation Department directly.

The University also makes Information regarding graduate and professional education placement in compliance with Title IV requirements. Please contact the Office of Career Services at careersrv@bridgew.edu or 508.531.1328 to request this information.

Copyright Infringement

Bridgewater State University requires all users of the University network to comply with all state and federal laws, including copyright laws.

Students should be aware that unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material (e.g., songs, music and other materials), such as through peer-to-peer networks, may constitute copyright infringement. Penalties for copyright infringement include civil and criminal penalties. In general, anyone found liable for civil copyright infringement may be ordered to pay either actual damages or “statutory” damages affixed at not less than $750 and not more than $30,000 per work infringed. For “willful” infringement, a court may award up to $150,000 per work infringed. A court can, in its discretion, also assess costs and attorneys’ fees. For details, see Title 17, United States Code, Sections 504, 505. Willful copyright infringement can also result in criminal penalties, including imprisonment of up to five years and fines of up to $250,000 per offense. For more information, please see the website of the U.S. Copyright Office (http://www.copyright.gov/), especially their FAQs.

Copyright infringement is a violation of University policy and may result in disciplinary action.  For a further description of prohibited activities regarding use of University technology resources, please refer to the University’s Copyright Policy, Responsible Use of Technology Policy and its other Information Technology Policies and Procedures. The University’s Division of Information Technology blocks all peer-to-peer applications traversing the University network destined for the internet.