School of Engineering
Acceptable Use of Computing Resources
As members of the Padnos School of Engineering community, all users have the responsibility to use the university¿s computing resources in a considerate, ethical, and legal manner. The usage standards that apply to computing resources derive directly from standards of common sense and decency that apply to the use of any shared resource. The Padnos School of Engineering depends first upon the spirit of mutual respect and cooperation that has been fostered at the university to resolve differences and ameliorate problems. The statements below on conditions of use and acceptable use policies are published in that spirit. The purpose is to promote the considerate, ethical, and legal use of our computing resources for the protection of all users.
Conditions of Use
The ability of a community to fairly distribute its shared resources among its members depends upon just a few guiding principles. When you use the Padnos School of Engineering (PSE) computing resources, you agree to the following conditions:
- To respect the privacy of other users; for example, you shall not attempt to read others¿ e-mail, access their files or media without permission, or assume the identity of another user.
- To respect the legal protection provided by copyright and licensing of programs and data; for example, you shall not make copies of a licensed computer program to avoid paying additional license fees or to share with other users.
- To respect the intended usage of computing resources; the computing resources of the PSE are in support of instruction and education. The usage of these resources for any other purpose (such as business use) is prohibited.
- To respect the integrity of the system or network; for example, you shall not intentionally develop or use programs, transactions, data, or processes that harass other users, impair the ability of the system or network to function, or alter the software or data components of the system in order to impair the ability of the system or network to function.
- To respect the rights of other users; for example, you shall comply with all University policies regarding sexual, racial, and other forms of harassment. Note specifically that the display of pornographic or racist images on computer screens is considered a form of harassment and is a serious offense.
- To adhere to all General University Policies and Procedures including, but not limited to, policies on proper use of information resources, information technology, and networks; acquisition, use, and disposal of University-owned computer equipment; use of telecommunications equipment; ethical and legal use of software; and ethical and legal use of administrative data. (http://www.gvsu.edu/it/computer-use-209.htm) users of Grand Valley¿s external network connections (i.e., MichNet and NSFNET) shall comply with the evolving "Acceptable Use" policies established by the external networks¿ governing bodies. The current MichNet and NSFNET policies are available as links from the GVSU Information Technology web site.
Acceptable Use Policies
Computing and networking resources are sometimes in scarce supply. Resource contention may variously involve disk space, CPU time, workstation keyboard access, printer access, software access, and network bandwidth. Any use of PSE networks and/or computers (even if legitimate by other aspects of this document) may be restricted if it places an excessive load on the system that results in reduced services to other users.
In order to ensure that the computing resources of the PSE are available for education, the following policies have been adopted. Violations of these policies, or any other usage that is inconsistent with the Conditions of Use stated above, shall be subject to the procedures described in the Disciplinary Actions section below.
- Available network bandwidth is a shared resource and must not be abused. Any non-academic use of the network must be limited such that its effect on the available bandwidth is not noticeable. This requires common sense on behalf of the user. For example, instant messaging programs (such as ICQ or IRC) are low-bandwidth applications that are not likely to impact available bandwidth. Using these programs to transfer large files, however, is likely to impact available bandwidth and is prohibited. Similarly, the use of file-sharing programs (in the genre of Limewire, BitTorrent, etc.) to either download or upload large files for non-academic use is strictly prohibited.
- The playing of computer games on PSE computers is prohibited if these games in any way interfere with the operation of the computing resources and/or network. The occasional game of Solitaire is acceptable. Games that rely upon network-based interactions with other computers are not allowed if their bandwidth requirements have any noticeable impact upon the available bandwidth of the network. No computer shall be used for playing games when other users are waiting for a computer to become available.
- In consideration of others who need a quiet environment in which to work, computers shall not be used to play music (or other sounds) over speakers or otherwise generate objectionable sounds.
- Some computers may be configured in a special manner (with either hardware or software) for specific purposes. Users that have a legitimate need to access these specialized computers are given priority access to these resources and are empowered to displace someone using the computer when other computers are available.
- The installation of software programs for non-academic use is dangerous as there have been several known occurrences of these programs interfering with the proper operation of the computer. In these cases, the only remedy is to "re-image" the computer, a process that is time-consuming and a waste of PSE staff resources. You are expected to refrain from any frivolous activities that may impair the computer¿s operating system or applications, which includes the installation of software for non-academic use.
If you inadvertently damage the computer¿s operating system or suite of applications, you are expected to take responsibility for your actions and report the event to PSE faculty or staff. You will then be expected to re-image the computer.
- Computing resources shall not be used for any illegal activities, including violation of copyright or other intellectual property protections. Take note: the very act of downloading (i.e., making a copy) of a copyrighted work (such as a song, image, or video) without permission is a violation of copyright law.
- Printers and printer paper are a shared (and costly) resource and are to be used responsibly. You are expected to use printers and printer paper sparingly and to make use of on-screen documents whenever possible. The printing of large documents such as manuals and books is prohibited.
When a faculty/staff report of suspected technology violation is made, it will be dealt with as defined by the rules in the Policy Abuse Procedures.
Page last modified July 27, 2011