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Academic Policies & Procedures


All York University students are required to review the official Academic Calendar to learn about all policies and regulations based on your year of entry.

Academic Honesty and Student Conduct

You do not need to deal with academic issues alone. Access your EUC Advisor, counselling services (including an accessibility counsellor, who can attend sessions with you), and get support for your personal success and well-being.

Please familiarize yourself with your rights and responsibilities at York by reviewing the Senate Policy on Academic Honesty and the Student Code of Conduct. In addition to these documents, carefully review the following material below and understand how it pertains to your studies.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Apps

According to York’s Senate Policy on Academic Honesty, using AI apps such as such as ChatGPT, GPT-3, DALL-E, among others to complete academic work without your instructor’s knowledge or permission, is considered to be a breach of academic honesty. More specifically, using text-generating tools (such as ChatGPT) would be considered to be cheating (Senate Policy, section 2.1.1) and using image- generating tools (such as DALL-E) would be considered to be plagiarism (Senate Policy, section 2.1.3).

You may find that certain instructors will allow the use of these tools for certain assessments, yet others will not allow their use. If you’re not sure whether using an AI app for your academic work is acceptable, it is recommended that you:

  • Carefully review the guidelines for your assessments
  • Check for any messages from your instructor on eClass
  • Ask your instructor or TA if they are permitting the use of these tools

Additionally, you are encouraged to keep all of your research notes and draft versions of your work. You may be asked to present these if it is suspected that an AI app was used to help complete your work. These drafts can be used to show how this work developed, and to provide evidence that the work is your own.

Group Messaging Tools

Group messaging platforms, such as Discord or WhatsApp, can be helpful tools that connect students and support learning. However, such tools can lead to academic honesty violations when

students share or use answers to homework tasks, quizzes, tests, or exams, or when students collaborate on individual assignments. According to York’s Senate Policy on Academic Honesty these behaviours may lead to a penalty. Moderators of these groups are required to clearly communicate the group’s purpose and to remind students of the expectations for academic honesty. Being a member of such a group is not a breach of academic honesty or any other university policy. However, if you witness academically dishonest behaviour, it is strongly recommended that you leave the group. If you are unsure whether the behaviour is a violation of academic honesty, check with your TA or instructor. For detailed information about expectations for academic honesty, please refer to York’s Senate Policy on Academic Honesty.

Homework Help Sites

According to homework sites (such as Chegg), their services are intended to support students’ understanding of course material. Despite this, cheating occurs on tests and exams when students post their test or exam questions to these sites during the assessment in order to obtain answers from one of their experts. Using the answers provided is a breach of academic honesty, according to

York’s Senate Policy on Academic Honesty. If you're struggling with course material, understanding expectations, or in any other way, reach out to your instructor or TA instead of relying on homework help sites to acquire assessment answers. For authorized resources and sources of help at York, please visit:

Contract Cheating

Contract cheating occurs when a third party completes a student’s work, and the student then submits that work as their own. Third parties can include: freelance academic writers or tutors, online essay writing companies, friends, classmates, or even family members. Contract cheating is considered to be a serious type of academic dishonesty that carries severe penalties. Besides penalties imposed by the university, contracting a third party to complete academic work carries the additional risks of identity theft and blackmail. If you are unsure whether a certain resource is a legitimate source of help, check with your TA or instructor. For authorized resources and sources of help at York, please visit: As well, for detailed information about expectations for academic honesty, please refer to York’s Senate Policy on Academic Honesty.

Unauthorized Collaboration

Unauthorized collaboration occurs when students work together on assessments without their instructor’s permission. This can include working together to solve homework problems, comparing their homework, test or exam answers, collaborating to complete assignments, or having someone else write or revise an assignment. Sometimes collaborating on assessments with other students is acceptable, yet at other times, individual effort is required. This can vary by course, instructor, or assessment. Even when it comes to group assignments, individual work may be required at different stages. If you are unsure whether collaborating on assigned work is permitted or the extent of collaboration that is acceptable, review the instructions for that assessment, and/or ask your instructor.

or TA. Note: even if collaboration on an assessment is permitted, it is never acceptable copy someone else’s work or allow them to copy yours.


Plagiarism is defined as misusing another person’s published or unpublished work by presenting their ideas, writing or other intellectual property as one’s own without proper acknowledgement (Senate Policy on Academic Honesty, section 2.1.3.). There are a number of acts that are considered to be plagiarism, for example:

  • copying content word-for-word from a source without proper citation;
  • paraphrasing from a source without proper citation; submitting work you have already submitted for another course without the instructor’s approval;
  • rewording someone else’s work which you submit as your own;
  • having a third party complete work in whole then submitting it as one’s own (also known as contract cheating).

Although plagiarism is often thought to involve words and ideas, it can also involve drawings, paintings, photographs, programming code, statistics, presentations, musical scores, among other types of content. Even if the act of plagiarism was unintentional, you can still receive a penalty. To avoid plagiarism, keep good track of any outside sources you use, and ensure that you cite sources properly. For more help on how to avoid plagiarism, contact the Library, Writing Centre, or your instructor or TA.

Content Sharing Sites (e.g. Course Hero, One Class, StuDoc U, etc.)

For information about content sharing sites, including a syllabus statement, please refer to this page:

Petitioning for Regulatory Exemption or Consideration

Through the course of your studies you may come across situations where you may want to be considered for an exemption from meeting a regulation of your program.  To do this, students communicate their intention or request through a petition form.  During your advising sessions, your Advisor might suggest to you that submitting a petition may help you resolve an academic matter.  Meet with your Advisor to learn more about this process and your Advisor will guide you and assist you once the outcome of the petition is communicated to you in writing.

Undergraduate Courses' Common Instructions

Technical requirements for taking the course

Technology requirements and FAQs for eClass can be found here: 

EUC courses which might include or require the following:

  • participate in through video conferencing; 
  • appear on video (e.g., for seminar discussion, presentations, group work, etc.);
  • a stable, higher-speed Internet connection. (To determine Internet connection and speed, run an online test, such as Speedtest];
  • a computer with webcam and microphone, and/or a smart device with these features.

For student computing information, resources and help here are some links:

Policies related to Zoom meetings

EUC courses may involve the use of Zoom. Zoom is an online videoconferencing software that can be used to host lectures, tutorials or virtual office hours in real time. All audio, video, screen-sharing and text content will be encrypted in transit between your device and Zoom’s servers, which will prevent unauthorized third parties from intercepting the content of your Zoom meeting. For more information, please visit Zoom at YorkU.


At the moment, the name you use with Zoom and metadata about how you use the application will be stored on servers outside of Canada. If you have privacy concerns, provide only your first name or a nickname when you join a session. If you choose to rename yourself, please let your instructor or TA know immediately.

You can rename yourself in 4 easy steps.

  1. After entering the Zoom meeting, click on the Participants icon at the bottom of the window.
  2. Find your name in the Participants list on the right side of the Zoom window
  3. Hover over your name and click the Rename button.
  4. Enter the name that you would like to use in the Zoom meeting and click OK.
  5. PLEASE NOTE: most EUC courses have participation marks and it’s important that you use the same name so the TA or Instructor can accurately track participation.
  6. Lectures and/or tutorial sessions may be recorded so that they can be made available to students who are not able to attend class. If you do not wish to be seen or heard, please keep your camera and/or microphone turned off. Recordings will only be posted on Passport-York protected platforms, such as eClass, and will be deleted following the end of term.


Questions can be asked through the chat panel. Inappropriate or disrespectful language in the chat panel will not be tolerated.

You may also participate through Zoom’s nonverbal feedback features. These features can be accessed by clicking Reactions icon at the bottom of the window and Raise Hand. Please click on the Lower Hand button again to lower your hand once your question has been answered. You are tasked with using the various Zoom features in a responsible manner. Your course instructor and/or TA will reserve the right to remove anyone who does not behave accordingly.

Grading Scheme, Assignment Submissions, and Lateness Penalties

The grading scheme for EUC courses conforms to the 9-point system used in other undergraduate programs at York.  Assignments and tests will bear either a letter grade designation (e.g., A, B, C+, etc.) or an equivalent percentage grade. The final grade for the course will be calculated using the weighting formula established above for this course. 

Instructions for Submission and Return of Final Assignments

For the FW 2021-2022, assignments may be submitted either in person or electronically. For the latter, the process will be facilitated via eClass. Please do not email individual TAs or instructors with assignments.

Proper academic performance depends on students doing their work not only well, but on time. Accordingly, the assignments for EUC courses must be received by the Instructor on the due date specified for the assignment.  

Lateness Penalty

Assignments received later than the due date will be penalized 5% of the value of the assignment per day that the assignments are late. For example, if an assignment worth 20% of the total course grade is a day late, 1 point out of 20 (or 5% per day) will be deducted. Exceptions to the lateness penalty for valid reasons such as illness, compassionate grounds, etc. will be entertained by the Course Director.  

Missed Tests 

Students with a documented reason for missing a course test, such as illness, compassionate grounds, etc., may request accommodation from the Course Instructor. When you contact the Course Instructor, state accommodation arrangement: e.g., allowed to write a make-up test on xx date.). Further extensions or accommodation will require students to submit a formal petition to the Faculty. 

Group Work

EUC courses may require group work. Group work, when done well, can teach collaborative skills that are essential in many work contexts. It can enrich everyone’s learning by making all students resources for each other and can create a synergy based on the diversity of histories and perspectives of the group members.  To ensure that group work is a positive experience, each group should first discuss and agree to ground-rules for effective group work such as: 1) active listening and facilitating equal participation of all; 2) respecting different opinions and different ways of knowing or communicating; 3) considering issues of power, difference and discrimination; 4) identifying a clear path of communication with Course Director should there be issues/concerns; and 5) making clear a path of action for issues regarding equity-related or harassment concerns. 

Useful articles on working through equity issues in groups:

Learning Commons: Learn more at the Student guide to group work videos. 

Burke, Bev et al. “Thinking Equity.” Education for Changing Unions. Toronto: Between the Lines, 2002, 74-77.

Narayan, Uma. “Working Together Across Differences: Some Considerations on Emotions and Political Practice.” Hypatia, Vol. 3, No. 2 (Summer, 1998), pp. 31-47. 

Inclusivity in the EUC Undergraduate Programs

Our programs strive to include a broad range of perspectives and substantive material in course offerings. Central to a clear understanding of urban and environmental problems is the link between exploitation of the natural world, and justice issues related to racism, gender inequity, and poverty. An inclusion of non-western perspectives is therefore essential to a fruitful discussion of North-South issues, and debates generally.

Religious Observance Days

York University is committed to respecting the religious beliefs and practices of all members of the community and making accommodations for observances of special significance to adherents.  Should any of the dates specified in this syllabus for in-class test or examination pose such a conflict for you, contact the Course Director within the first three weeks of class.  Similarly, should an assignment to be completed in a lab, practicum placement, workshop, etc., scheduled later in the term pose such a conflict, contact the Course Director immediately.  Please note that to arrange an alternative date or time for an examination scheduled in the formal examination periods (December and April/May), students must complete and Examination Accommodation Form:

Academic Honesty

As a student at York University, you have a responsibility to not only understand, but also play an important part in upholding the integrity of the academic experience. The Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change supports the International Center for Academic Integrity’s definition of academic integrity. That is, you will be committed to acting in all academic matters, even in the face of adversity, with honesty, trust, fairness, courage, respect and responsibility.

How can you demonstrate academic integrity in the completion of your course?

  • Respect the ideas of others: Your course work should represent your own knowledge and ideas. You should not falsely claim credit for ideas that are not your own, by presenting another’s work as yours. If you are quoting, paraphrasing, or summarizing another person’s work in order to support your own ideas, identify the work and the author through proper citation practices. For more information about how to cite properly, use the Student Papers and Academic Research Kit (SPARK). You can improve your writing, research, and personal learning abilities through the Learning Commons.
  • Respect your peers: Know when you are allowed to collaborate. Ask your instructor about what group work entails when it comes to the sharing of work. In test situations and assignments, don’t steal or give answers to your peers. Cheating and aiding in a breach of academic honesty are both against York University’s academic honesty policy.
  • Respect your course instructor(s): Understand what the instructors are asking of you in class, in assignments, and in exams. If you are unsure, ask your professor or teaching assistant. They are committed to making you feel supported and want to assess you fairly and with integrity. Please do not submit the same piece of work for more than one course without your instructor’s permission.
  • Respect yourself: When you act with integrity, you know that your work is yours and yours alone. You do allow others to impersonate you, or you do not yourself impersonate another person during a test or exam. You do not buy or otherwise obtain term papers or assignments. You do the work. As a result, you know that you earned the grades that you receive, so you can be proud of your York degree. By acting with integrity in your course work, you are also practising a valuable professional skill that is important in all workplaces.
  • Take responsibility: If you have acted in an academically dishonest way, you can demonstrate courage and take responsibility for your mistake. You can admit your mistake to your course instructor as soon as possible.

Students who engage in academic dishonesty can be subject to disciplinary action under the Senate Policy on Academic Honesty. Your lack of familiarity with the Senate Policy and Guidelines on Academic Honesty does not constitute a defense against their application. Some academic offences can also constitute offences under the Criminal Code of Canada, which means that you may also be subject to criminal charges. 

Intellectual property notice

All materials prepared for EUC courses at York University are the intellectual property of the Course Director unless otherwise stated on the course syllabi. Course materials should only be used by students enrolled in each course, not across courses. This can include but is not limited to the following material: lecture notes, handouts and recordings; assignment handouts and instructions; spoken and written presentations; audio and video recordings; PowerPoint slides; and questions and/or solution sets for assignments, quizzes, tests and final exams. 

As a student in this course, you may not publish, post on an Internet site, sell, or otherwise distribute any of this work without the instructor’s express permission. Unauthorized or commercial use of these materials is strictly prohibited. Third party copyrighted materials (such as book chapters, journal articles, music, videos, etc.) have either been licensed for use in this course or fall under an exception or limitation in Canadian copyright law. Copying this material for distribution (e.g. uploading material to a commercial third-party website, or online sharing of course material with people outside of the course) may lead to a charge of misconduct under York’s Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities and the Senate Policy on Academic Honesty. In addition, you may face legal consequences for any violation of copyright law.

Ethical Review of Research Involving Human Participants. Some EUC courses may have assignments with Human Participants research that must undergo ethical review. 

Student Conduct

Students, course instructors and staff have a joint responsibility to create and maintain a welcoming and inclusive learning environment. All students are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Whether online or in-person, students and course instructors are expected to cultivate and sustain a professional relationship characterized by mutual respect and courtesy. In all classrooms, any disruptive and/or harassing behaviour will not be tolerated. To ensure that you adhere to the rules of the virtual classroom, please review what counts as proper ‘netiquette’ (the basic rules for communicating with others in online spaces) by consulting the student guide to e-learning.

Please respect the privacy of your peers and instructors. Never share private information about your peers and instructors without their permission. Remember, no aspect of your courses should be recorded or distributed without everyone’s consent.

Student Accessibility Services

While all students are expected to satisfy the requirements of their program of study and to aspire to achieve excellence, the university recognizes that persons with disabilities may require reasonable accommodation to enable them to perform at their best. For more information about this policy, please refer to these guidelines and procedures: Academic Accommodation for Students with Disabilities.

The university encourages students with disabilities to register with Student Accessibility Services (SAS) to discuss their accommodation needs as early as possible in the term. An Accessibility Counsellor will help you establish recommended academic accommodations, which will then need to be communicated to your course instructor(s) as necessary. Please let the course instructor(s) know as early as possible in the term if you anticipate requiring academic accommodation, so that your accommodation needs can be discussed and considered within the context of this course.


Student Counselling & Development (SCD) aims to help York students realize, develop and fulfill their personal potential in order to maximally benefit from their university experience and manage the challenges of university life. You can get support for a wide range of concerns including, but not limited to: depression, anxiety, abuse, stress, self-esteem, relationship issues, eating and body image as well as issues related to sexuality. For more information, please contact:

You can also reach out to your TAs, course instructor, the Undergraduate Program Director, Student Support Coordinator, Peer Mentors or the Writing Centre if you have questions, comments, concerns or need academic help.