School of Public Health Policies and Procedures

Policy on Criminal Background Checks Applicants must submit and satisfactorily complete a designated criminal background check as a condition of admission; an offer of admission will not be final until the criminal background check(s) is received and deemed favorable. Admission may be denied or rescinded based on the results of the background check.  In addition, selected community agencies where students pursue applied practical experiences may require that students placed in their organizations pass an additional criminal background check before being allowed to practice in their facilities. 


Immunizations are required of all students. The Board of Regents may require immunizations against additional diseases for some students. Further immunizations may be required by the Board of Regents in times of emergency or epidemic. For a list of required immunizations, reference the Immunizations section of this catalog.

Student Health Insurance

The UT Board of Regents requires students at UT Health San Antonio to maintain a valid major medical insurance policy throughout the program. Admitted students who do not already have insurance may enroll in student health insurance through the Office of Student Life.

Financial Aid

To determine eligibility for federal, state and private sources of financial aid, please visit The Office of Veterans’ Services and Financial Aid.


To review the cost of attendance for public health programs, reference the Financial Aid website. For details about tuition and fees, please contact the Bursar’s Office.

The Semester Credit Hour

The unit measure for credit purposes is the semester credit hour (SCH). One semester credit hour of credit is given for each 15 clock hours of lecture or equivalent in the School of Public Health graduate programs.

Adding and Dropping Courses

Students are expected to pre-register for all courses. After the first day of classes and before census day, students may add classes with the approval of their faculty advisor and the appropriate associate dean or designee.

Dropping refers to the procedure by which students remove themselves from one or more of the courses they are enrolled in while continuing in the remainder of their courses. A student enrolled in only one course must withdraw or apply for a leave of absence if he/she intends to drop the course. Please refer to the Office of the University Registrar’s section of this catalog.

Repeating a Course

Students cannot re-enroll in public health courses for a grade if the course has already been completed with a passing grade. A student can repeat a course a maximum of three times.

Voluntary Withdrawal

Withdrawal refers to the procedure by which students voluntarily remove themselves from all courses they are enrolled in. Withdrawal from all courses constitutes withdrawal from the public health program and university unless the student is granted a leave of absence. A student wishing to withdraw from one or all courses in the School of Public Health initiates the process through consultation with their faculty advisor and/or the Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee. The student will submit an electronic withdrawal form in My Student Center. Failure to clear campus appropriately will affect the student’s ability to obtain transcripts, be readmitted to the program, or obtain financial support.

A student who completes a semester but does not plan to continue in the School of Public Health during the next semester must withdraw or apply for a leave of absence.

A student who discontinues class attendance in any course without completing the formal drop or withdrawal process via the appropriate electronic Registrar eForm will receive the grade they have earned for the course. See policies for administrative Leave of Absence (LOA) in the Health Science Center catalog. A previously withdrawn student is subject to the same admission requirements, procedures, and acceptance considerations that apply to first-time applicants.

Procedures for Dropping a Course or Withdrawal

All students who complete the formal withdrawal process through the Office of the University Registrar will be awarded the grade of W. The electronic withdrawal form must be submitted by the posted withdrawal date. 

Students are expected to discuss dropping courses with their faculty advisor and/or the instructor of record. The student makes an appointment with their faculty advisor to discuss the decision, explore options, and make necessary changes to the degree plan. The student must log in to My Student Center and access the Registrar eForms tile to submit an electronic Drop form, and, if withdrawing from the program, the student must log in to My Student Center and access the Registrar eForms tile to submit a Student Clearance eForm. The form will be sent to the MPH Program Director. The University Registrar and Financial Aid office will receive notice of the electronic withdrawal.

Leave of Absence

Any student in good standing (passing all required courses with a 3.0 in the graduate program, no incomplete grades in a course, and no failures) may, under special circumstances, take a leave of absence. A leave of absence may be granted for a maximum period of one year.

If the student and the faculty advisor agree that a leave of absence is appropriate, the student must submit a Student Clearance eForm through My Student Center. The form will be sent to the MPH Program Director and the associate dean. The Student Clearance eForm will be routed to Student Services offices, such as Financial Aid, Bursar, UTPD, etc., for approval to "clear campus." Failure to clear campus appropriately will affect the student’s ability to obtain transcripts, be readmitted to the program, or obtain financial support.

The student may return to school any time during the year but no later than one year from when the leave started. The student must notify the Office for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs at least three months before returning to campus. Return to school will coincide with the beginning of a semester. Courses not completed when initiating the leave will have to be repeated. Students who do not return from leave within the one-year limit will be withdrawn from the public health program and must apply for admission as new student.


The School of Public Health faculty believes that attending scheduled classes and applied practical experiences is crucial to meeting course and program objectives. Excused absences may be granted by the instructor or preceptor in such cases as illness or personal emergency and are considered on an individual basis. Please refer to the course syllabus for attendance requirements.

Excused Absences

The student is responsible for providing satisfactory evidence to the instructor or preceptor to substantiate the reason for absence. Among the reasons absences are considered excused by the School of Public Health are the following:

  • Death or major illness in a student’s immediate family. Immediate family may include: mother, father, sister, brother, grandparents, spouse, child, spouse’s child, spouse’s parents, spouse’s grandparents, step-mother, step-father, step-sister, step-brother, step-grandparents, grandchild, step-grandchild, legal guardian, and others as deemed appropriate by the dean or dean’s designee.
  • Participation in legal proceedings or administrative procedures that require a student’s presence.
  • Notification of Planned Absence to Observe Religious Holy Day (Notification must be submitted to the Office of Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs).
  • Injury or illness that is too severe or contagious for the student to attend class or applied practical experience scheduled activity. Immediate notification to the Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee via email as quickly as the student’s health condition allows.
  • Injury or illness of three or more days. For injury or illness that requires a student to be absent from classes for three or more business days (including classes on weekends), the student should obtain a medical confirmation note from her or his healthcare provider. The Student Health Clinic or an off-campus healthcare provider can provide a medical confirmation note only if those providers are directly involved in the care of the student. The medical confirmation note must contain the date and time of the illness and the provider’s confirmation of the needed absence.
  • Injury or illness less than three days. Faculty members may require confirmation of student injury or illness that is serious enough for a student to be absent from class for a period of less than three business days (including classes on weekends). At the discretion of the faculty member and/or Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee standard, as outlined in the course syllabus, illness confirmation may be obtained by confirmation of a visit to a healthcare provider affirming the date and time of the visit.
  • Required Military Duties.
  • In accordance with Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, the School of Public Health shall treat pregnancy (childbirth, false pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, and recovery therefrom) and related conditions as a justification for an excused absence for so long a period as is deemed medically necessary by the student’s healthcare provider. Requests for excused absence related to pregnancy should be directed to the Associate Dean; questions about Title IX should be directed to the University’s Senior Director of Student Success and Title IX Director.

The Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee may provide a letter for the student to take to the instructor or preceptor stating that the dean has verified the student’s absence as excused.

Military Absences

Under certain circumstances, a student required to participate in active military services is excused from scheduled classes or other required activities and will be allowed to complete an assignment or exam within a reasonable time after the absence. The excused absence is permitted only if the student will not miss more than 25% of the total number of class meetings or the contact hour equivalent (not including the final examination period) for the specific course or courses in which the student is enrolled at the beginning of the period of active military service.

Students expected to be absent from classes for active duty must obtain approval from the Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee in order to take a Leave of Absence. All related procedures must be followed, including completion of a Student Clearance Form.

Incomplete Grades

A student may be granted a grade of Incomplete, I, for a course when the student is unable to complete all course work within the allotted semester time under certain special circumstances. The student wishing to petition for an extended time to complete course requirements must request the extension, incomplete grade, from the instructor of record.

Conduct and Discipline

Students are responsible for knowing and observing the university‘s procedures and regulations governing Student Conduct and Discipline and the Rules and Regulations of the Board of Regents. In addition to these regulations, standards of professional conduct may be set by each school of the Health Science Center.

The Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs for the School of Public Health shall be responsible for the administration of discipline in cases concerning scholastic dishonesty and student misconduct. The processes afforded a student subject to disciplinary sanctions are governed by Series 50101 of the Rules and Regulations of the Board of Regents of The University of Texas System and the health science center’s Student Conduct and Discipline Policy.

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Each individual student is responsible for their behavior and is expected to maintain standards of academic honesty. Students share the responsibility with faculty for creating an environment that supports academic honesty and principles of professionalism. Proper relationships between faculty and students are fundamental to the School of Public Health. This relationship should be built on mutual respect, understanding, and shared dedication to the education process. It is a fundamental belief that each student is worthy of trust and that each student has the right to live in an academic environment free of injustice caused by dishonesty. While students must assist their fellow students in meeting the common goals of their education, students have an equal obligation to maintain the highest standards of personal integrity.

Faculty Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of the faculty to specify in their syllabi the limits of acceptable resources that may be used for the purposes of the course.  It is the responsibility of students to honor and adhere to those limits.  The faculty should establish what is considered academic dishonesty with the students.  Encouragement of group work varies greatly. Faculty shall convey to their students the acceptable level of individual versus collaborative work.  Faculty, students, and administrators share the responsibility for creating an environment that encourages academic honesty.

Scholastic Dishonesty

Public Health students are expected to maintain an environment of academic integrity. Actions involving scholastic dishonesty violate the professional code of ethics and disrupt the academic environment. Students found guilty of scholastic dishonesty, including but not limited to plagiarism, falsification, sharing exam items, and misrepresentation, violate the professional code of ethics and are subject to disciplinary action, including dismissal from the school.

Both professional misconduct and scholastic dishonesty are governed by the guidelines contained in the procedures and regulations governing Student Conduct and Discipline of the health science center contained in this catalog.

Student academic appeals and grievances are handled through established policies and procedures for the School of Public Health as outlined in the General Academic Policies section of this Catalog.

If a student would like to pursue the Academic Review procedure, they must first notify the Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee.  The Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs or designee is available to explain, discuss, and facilitate this process with students for each step. 


Unless advised otherwise by the faculty advisor or instructor of record, students must provide transportation to the various agencies for applied practical experiences and be responsible for associated parking fees.

My Student Center

My Student Center is a one-stop center to provide services and information to assist students in achieving their academic goals. My Student Center allows students to review policies and procedures, enroll in classes, view their bills, check financial aid status, make payments, view their holds, change addresses, do enrollment verification, and more, all from a single anchor page.

This catalog is a general information publication only. It is not intended to, nor does it contain all regulations that relate to students. UT Health San Antonio reserves the right to withdraw courses at any time, to change fees or tuition, calendar, curriculum, degree requirements, graduation procedures, and any other requirement affecting students. Changes will become effective whenever the proper authorities so determine and will apply to both prospective students and those already enrolled. To the extent provided by applicable law, no person shall be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination under any program or activity sponsored or conducted by UT Health San Antonio based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, gender identity or expression, veteran status or any other basis prohibited by law.