Skip to main content

Professionalism Policy for Students

(August 2017)

Why a Policy on Professionalism?

In working to fulfill its mission, the School of Music strives to meet the highest professional and moral standards. Professionalism is key to the success of the faculty and students in the School of Music and thus is an essential component of each student’s education. With thousands of young people desiring to attend BYU in order to major in music, we feel an obligation to admit and retain students who demonstrate the highest standards in both work-related ethics and personal behavior and whose conduct after graduation will reflect positively on them and on the reputation of the university and the School of Music.

While most music students conduct themselves well, in a few cases, students who are admitted into a particular program subsequently demonstrate unprofessional behavior that has potentially serious academic consequences for them and may jeopardize their ability to succeed in the field of music.

Because we feel strongly the responsibility to prepare our students as future professionals, and in light of the significant demand for entrance into School of Music’s limited enrollment programs, we plan to adopt the following School of Music Professionalism Policy.

The School of Music Professionalism Policy is consistent with and references other policies already in effect elsewhere in the university.

Professionalism Policy for Students

School of Music

Consistent with its Aims and Objectives, the School of Music strives to prepare its students to become teachers, scholars, and creative artists who adhere to the highest professional standards in the discipline of music and who conduct themselves according to the moral standards consistent with the university’s mission, thereby enabling them to effectively meet the musical needs of their profession, the LDS Church, and their communities and countries across the world.

Honor Code Violations

All students who enroll at BYU have agreed to live according to the BYU Honor Code, which, among other things, includes specific commitments in relation to academic honesty and dress and grooming.

In cases in which students violate their commitment of academic honesty, the School of Music will follow the policies and procedures set forth in the BYU Academic Honesty Policy, which deals with plagiarism, fabrication or falsification, cheating, and other academic misconduct. Applicable actions include:

For instructors (in consultation with the department chair):

  • Reprimanding the student orally or in writing
  • Requiring work affected by the academic dishonesty to be redone
  • Administering a lower or failing grade on the affected assignment or test
  • Administering a lower or failing grade for the course (even if the student withdraws from the course)
  • Removing the student from the course

For departments and colleges:

  • After consulting with the Honor Code office, dismissing the student from the program, department, or college
  • Recommending probation, suspension, or dismissal from the university

In cases in which students violate their commitment to live the dress and grooming aspects of the Honor Code, faculty are encouraged to address the issue with students directly. If the problem persists, faculty are to refer to the Honor Code Office for further assistance. 4440 WSC, (801) 422-2847.

In cases in which student behavior may have legal implications (for example, sexual misconduct, drug abuse, or illegal activity), faculty are asked to follow current procedures as outlined by the Honor Code office (see above for contact information) and to notify the director of the School of Music immediately.

Other Types of Unprofessional Behavior

Inappropriate Conduct in Classroom Settings

Examples of unprofessional behavior may include, but are not limited to, disrespectful interaction with others (faculty, staff, and fellow students); chronic tardiness and/or excessive absences; using electronic devices for email, social media, text-messaging, or gaming during class; sleeping in class; regularly leaving class early without making arrangements with the instructor; or other disruptive behaviors.

Professional Ethics and Conflicts of Interest

Students who demonstrate flagrant or intentional disregard for professional codes of ethics or conflicts of interest may be dropped from the major. Examples of such behavior may include, but are not limited to, using department facilities for personal, commercial, or political use; the misuse of university instruments or resources; unprofessional or unethical behavior while on School of Music sponsored tours or study abroad; failure to meet professional expectations in student teaching settings, etc.

Failure to Properly Enroll

Students are expected to demonstrate a pattern of enrollment that adheres to the requirements and prerequisites outlined in their Major Academic Plan (MAP). For example, in each of their first four semesters as a music major, students are required to be enrolled in music theory, aural skills, sight-singing, private instruction and a major ensemble. Students who demonstrate a pattern of enrollment that does not adhere to, nor attempt to follow, their Major Academic Plan (MAP) enrollment guidelines may be dropped from the major.

Policy Enforcement

Verbal Intervention

Instructors who feel a student is in violation of this policy should speak to the student privately and address their concerns directly with the student.

Written Intervention

If the policy breach is excessive, then it needs to be documented, or if the student fails to comply with the professor’s verbal request within a reasonable period of time, the instructor will convene a meeting with the student to attempt to resolve the issues of unprofessional behavior. If the violation is excessive enough, a School of Music representative may be included. Following this consultation, the instructor will prepare a letter that describes the student’s unprofessional behavior and the intended process for resolution. Both the instructor and the student will sign and date the original letter, which will be kept in the student’s School of Music file. Copies will be provided to both the professor and the student.

Review Committee

If the student fails to comply with the expectations provided in the letter within a reasonable period of time, the division coordinator for the student’s particular major or emphasis will convene a meeting in which the student will be reviewed for possible removal from the major. Both sides of the case (the student’s perspective and the instructor’s perspective) will be presented to a review committee comprised of at least three faculty from the student’s major or emphasis. After deliberation, the review committee will make a determination regarding the following applicable actions:

  • Determine that the problem has been resolved
  • Extend the process for resolution
  • Drop the student from the major

A letter written by the division coordinator which explains the committee’s decision will be signed by the instructor who documented the unresolved problem, the members of the review committee, and the division coordinator. The letter will be placed in the student’s School of Music file.


The first appeal will be to the School of Music Executive Council. Final appeal will be to the College of Fine Arts and Communication.