Northern Virginia Community College
Web Policy

Summary
Purpose
Definition of Institutional and Individual NVCC Information
Responsibility for Maintenance of Information and Disclaimers
NVCC Web Site Publishing Guidelines
NVCC Server Information
Definitions of Terms

NOVA seal

 

Summary

The Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC) Web site is an online information system that provides access to services and resources of interest to the College and community. The NVCC Web site is designed to improve communications, accessibility, and ease-of-use of information. Information may be placed on the institutional sites of the NVCC Web by the president, campuses, academic units, and administrative units. Information may be placed on the professional sites by faculty and staff.

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Purpose

 Northern Virginia Community College maintains a World Wide Web site to

  1. support and further the instructional, research, and administrative activities of the college;
  2. provide information about NVCC to the college community and the outside world;
  3. organize NVCC and World Wide Web resources for the use of the NVCC community and others;
  4. enable members of the NVCC community to publish their own information electronically;
  5. facilitate communication between and among students and faculty.

To preserve the security, availability, and integrity of the NVCC Web site resources and to protect all users’ rights to an open exchange of ideas and information, this policy defines the responsibilities of each member of the NVCC community in the use of this resource. Publication of information on the NVCC Web site is governed by existing NVCC policies, as well as those specifically developed for the World Wide Web. Existing policies include the Northern Virginia Community College Information Technology Employee Ethics Agreement (NVCC 105-11), the VCCS Information Technology Ethics Agreement, all applicable regulations and statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and all federal policies and laws. Information published on the NVCC Web site must be the intellectual property of the individual distributing it and must not contain bugs, viruses, or restricted copyright material. Violations of this policy may result in revocation of access, suspension of accounts, disciplinary action, or prosecution.

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Definition of Institutional and Professional NVCC Information

Any information published on the NVCC Web site by an officially recognized NVCC office, program, department, or project is considered "Institutional" NVCC information. Any information published on the Web by faculty and staff that is not an "Institutional" site is considered "Professional."  General publishing guidelines below apply to both types of information. However, specific guidelines also govern publication of each type of information. All publishers on the NVCC Web site are expected to read, understand, and abide by these guidelines and policies. Publication of material on the NVCC Web site implies the publisher's consent to abide by these guidelines.

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Responsibility for Maintenance of Information and Disclaimers

A. College Index Pages
Policies regarding design and maintenance of the index and second-level pages of the College Web site and index pages of NVCC Institutional Web sites shall be the responsibility of the College Web Site Steering Committee. The membership of the Committee is as follows:

    • the College Webmaster
    • a representative for the Vice President Instructional & Information Technology
    • a Division Chair appointed by the Division Chair Round Table
    • a Teaching Faculty member appointed by the College Senate
    • a Dean of Student Development appointed by the Dean's Working Group
    • an LRC Director appointed by the LRC Working Group
    • a representative from College Marketing and Public Affairs
    • a Director from the Continuing Education Working Group

As issues arise concerning content, layout, source code, or academic aspects of the specified pages, this Steering Committee will appoint task forces composed of appropriate college personnel to address the issues. As appropriate, members of the College Information Technology Support Services (ITSS), Programming Support Services (PSS), and Technical Applications Center (TAC) staff, instructional design specialists, and campus faculty and staff will be appointed. The Steering Committee will receive and implement proposals from these task forces.

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B. Institutional NVCC Information
All NVCC Web sites published by an institutionally recognized NVCC office, program, department, or project shall be the administrative responsibility of a site supervisor assigned by that group. The site author(s) may be different individual(s) from the supervisor and are the one(s) who develop and publish the material that appears on the site. A specific author name and email address must appear on each Institutional NVCC site accordingly. All questions concerning the content and links of an NVCC Web site shall be referred to the named site author. No one at NVCC can be responsible for the content of information maintained at another site, but NVCC welcomes feedback to the site supervisor and site author if questions are identified.

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C. Individual Information and Individual NVCC Professional Sites
Individual information may be posted and maintained by individual NVCC faculty and staff members ("Individual Authors") on their professional sites. The purpose of the NVCC Professional Site is to support, complement, and enhance the professional activities of faculty, staff, and administrators employed by the College.

Instructors who wish to assign the creation of a Web site as a class project using the NOVAWEB server may request publishing access for specific class sections from the College ITSS staff. The resulting sites will remain posted for the semester of the course plus one additional semester, and then must be removed. Individual students are authorized to publish on the NVCC Web site only in connection with course requirements.

Individual Authors and third parties are solely responsible for the content and organization of the information posted by them, even if such information is accessed through the NVCC Web site. If any individual professional site is in conflict with NVCC or VCCS policy, regulations or statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, or federal policy or law, the individual author will be notified and the site may be removed from the NVCC server.

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D. Disclaimer Statement

The following Disclaimer Statement must be linked from the Professional site of all Individual Authors.

Information may be posted and maintained on Individual sites by NVCC faculty, staff, and student organizations ("Individual Authors"). NVCC wishes to allow the academic community the greatest possible freedom to use these resources creatively and responsibly. Therefore it does not undertake to screen, verify, edit, monitor, or censor information posted by Individual Authors, whether or not originated by Individual Authors or third parties, and does not accept any responsibility or liability for such information. Individual Authors and third parties are solely responsible for the content and organization of information posted by them, even if such information is accessed through the NVCC Web site. Should any NVCC Web site user discover something out of date, please contact the individual author at the email address given at the Web site. If a user notices something in conflict with NVCC or VCCS policy, regulations or statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, or federal policy or law, please contact the College Webmaster and the individual author.

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NVCC Web Site Publishing Guidelines

Index page design styles for Institutional Information sites on the NVCC Web site shall be coordinated by the College Web Site Steering Committee. The style of Individual Information sites will be at the author's discretion. The following guidelines define the procedures for hosting Web sites and the minimum requirements for both types of sites:

A. Hosting a Web Site

Any faculty, staff, academic unit, or administrative unit of NVCC may establish a Web site on a college server. Sites will be generated and published in accordance with NVCC Web publishing procedures defined below. Links to sites offering guidance on the development and publication of Web sites are available at the Vice President of Instructional & Information Technology site and the TAC site. The following lists the requirements for hosting a site:

    • All Institutional and Individual Professional Web site authors must be employees or students of NVCC;
    • All authors must also have access to a LAN connected personal computer, or an account with a local Internet Service Provider (ISP);
    • The act of publishing a site commits the author to assume responsibility for the content of the site, to be informed about all NVCC Web policy and legal requirements, and to review the informational content and confirm the links of the site regularly.
For all NVCC Web sites, irreconcilable disagreements about compliance shall be adjudicated through the College grievance process. At the discretion of the supervisor, materials may be removed from the production server during the grievance.

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B. Institutional Web Sites

Each NVCC Institutional Web site published by an institutionally recognized NVCC campus, office, program, department, or project must be identified with

    • NVCC and campus identification,
    • an author name,
    • an NVCC email address,
    • date of last update.

The named site author must keep the site current with appropriate HTML code, and must review and confirm the content of the site regularly, including component pages and links. When a site is separated into several major page groups, each group should be treated as a separate site for maintenance purposes.

For Institutional Information NVCC Web sites, the site supervisor is responsible for insuring that the content is college-related and in compliance with NVCC and VCCS policy, regulations and statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and federal policy or law. Site supervisors will work with site authors to emend site content as necessary to comply.

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C. Faculty/Staff Professional Web Sites

Each individual’s NVCC Professional Web site must be identified with

    • NVCC and campus identification,
    • an author name, an
    • NVCC email address,
    • date of last update
    • a link to the disclaimer statement.

The named site author must keep the site current with appropriate HTML code, and must review and confirm the content of the site regularly, including component pages and links. When a site is separated into several major page groups, each group should be treated as a separate site for maintenance purposes.

For Individual Professional NVCC Web sites, the site author is responsible for insuring that the content is college-related and in compliance with NVCC and VCCS policy, regulations and statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and federal policy or law. If necessary, the site author's administrative supervisor will work with him/her to change site content as necessary to comply.

New authors of NVCC Web sites should do the following:

    • review current information posted on the NVCC Web site to minimize the chances of duplication,
    • create links to posted information rather than repeating it,
    • be aware of U.S. copyright law [see Administrative Services Procedures Manual, §29].

To publish your Web site, the following will be complete:

    • The site author must verify that he/she has the credentials required to host a web site as defined above.
    • The TAC or ITSS staff will create directories for all college offices and groups on college server. Any office or group without a folder may request that one be created. The TAC and ITSS staff will respond to all such requests promptly.
    • Each office and group will designate a site supervisor and one or more site authors, all of whom will be given access to the appropriate folder. All requests for such access will be implemented promptly.
    • All Web pages may be posted directly to the folder on the production server by authorized site supervisors and site authors.

To update Web sites

    • Site supervisors and site authors may access appropriate files on the server at any time, modify them, and repost them.
    • Those authorized to modify Web pages are responsible for functional format and code, and for verifying links.

It is the sole responsibility of site authors on the NVCC Web site to be aware of, and comply with, all applicable law regarding all aspects of World Wide Web publishing, including copyright, software use, and fraud. Technical considerations may include that the site should

    • work with a variety of browsers,
    • accommodate lower-speed modems (e.g. avoid frames, and restrict the size of component files to keep loading times short),
    • use color combinations suitable for less-adaptable video cards.

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D. NVCC Policy Statement about Privacy on Web Sites Residing on NVCC Servers

All faculty, staff, administrators, and students who develop Web sites that reside on NVCC servers will abide by the NVCC Web Privacy Agreement. This means that the Web site will

  • Use only temporary "cookies," (i.e., files which may contain a variety of information) if any, for screen colors and graphics or to track movement on the site but will not place them permanently on the user's hard drive. When the user exits the Web site, the file is automatically removed.
  • Gather sensitive data through a Secure Sockets Layer.
  • Safeguard any information gathered in compliance with the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia and not supply any gathered information to other individuals or organizations, except in compliance with those laws.

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E. Prohibited Use of the NVCC Web Site

The NVCC Web site may not be used for personal financial gain or benefit. Links from Professional Pages to sites intended for personal profit are also prohibited. If any institutional or individual professional site is in conflict with NVCC or VCCS policy, regulations or statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, or federal policy or law, the individual site author will be notified, and the site may be removed from the NVCC server.

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F. Deactivation of World Wide Web

It is not the intent of NVCC to edit or censor individual sites or those of student organizations. Any user who discovers something out of date or in conflict with NVCC and VCCS policy, regulations and statutes of the Commonwealth of Virginia, and federal policy or law on Individual Professional or student organization sites should contact the individual author at the email address given on the Web site and the College Webmaster at TAC. If an NVCC Web site violates the policies and guidelines set forth above, the site supervisor and site author shall be notified, and the site content changed according to the procedures stated above. Until changes are made to bring the site into compliance, material alleged to be in violation may be removed from the server. Procedures for voluntary removal of Web sites are as follows:

    • An author or site supervisor may deactivate a Web site by notifying owners of other Web pages that reference the site of the impending deletion, and then deleting all Web pages in their directory.
    • In the case of Institutional sites, the site supervisor shall inform the College Web Site Steering Committee of the action.
    • In the case of Individual pages, ITSS staff may delete pages of individuals no longer associated with the College.

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NVCC Server Information

The NVCC approach to Web server policy is based on two concepts. First, every document is capable of being a Web document. Second, every file server and workstation is capable of being a Web server. Further, all servers at NVCC are subject to the NVCC Web Policy.

  • The College maintains Internet servers at various locations. The servers maintained in ITSS may be considered the principal servers for institutional pages. Other college departments and organizations may also own servers, which will be maintained by technology support staff on the site.
  • Technology support staff on campuses will routinely be involved in Purchasing decisions and will be responsible for the maintenance of hardware and software for campus servers.
  • Any individual who requires a separate server should utilize his/her workstation for that purpose, but for Intranet use only.
  • All servers are to be used for college-related activity.
  • The server administrator must notify the ITSS staff by memo, fax, or e-mail prior to the installation of a server.
  • The ITSS staff will have access to all College servers for maintenance as needed.

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Definitions of Terms

external link--A coded connection between pages at different Web sites, from which no return connection can be made without collaboration from the second site.

home page--See "index page."

index page--A World Wide Web page that is the entry point for a Web site. Contains links to other pages and sections of the site. Also called "home page."

Institutional page--A Web page published on the NVCC Web site by an officially recognized NVCC office, program, department, or project with direct links from the NVCC home page is considered an institutional page.

internal link--A coded connection between sections of the same Web site, either within a single page or between pages. Return connections can be made.

professional page--A Web page with professional data or information. The term is also sometimes used to refer to an individual's index page.

site author--Individual who develops and publishes material on a Web site.

site supervisor--Individual assigned by a college office, project, program, or department to be administratively responsible for an Institutional Web site published by that group. For Individual sites, the site author will often be the site supervisor as well.

web page--Any single body of HTML coded text and graphics. This may be considerably longer or shorter than the text and graphics that can be printed on an 8 1/2 x 11" sheet of paper.

web site--Any address on the World Wide Web, which is the location of, related, internally linked pages, or a single autonomous page. NVCC has a comprehensive Web site within which other college units and individuals have their own sites.

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(Revised NVCC Web Policy approved by the NVCC Information Technology Committee: 5/01/00)