TABLE OF CONTENTSMESSAGE FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR .1MISSION STATEMENT .2Equal Opportunities .2HOW TO STUDY .3What Should I Study?.3How Should I Study? .3What About Exercises and Quizzes? .4Where and When Should I Study?.4Sample Study Plan .5EXAMINATIONS .6Completing and Writing Exams .6Submitting Exams by Mail, Fax, or On-line .6Exam Policies and Grading .7Student Integrity Policy .8Student Conduct .8GETTING HELP WHEN YOU NEED IT .8Stratford Web Site .8Stratford Online LIbrary .8Writing to Stratford .8Calling Stratford.9SCI Contact Information .9Student Services .10Protecting your Privacy .10ACADEMIC POLICIES .11Entrance Requirements .11Advanced Standing .11Completion Time .11Grades .11Academic Probation and Suspension .12GRADUATION .12Completion Documents .12Transcripts .12DISPUTE RESOLUTION POLICY .13FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS .14STUDENT REFERRAL PROGRAM .16STUDY OBJECTIVES TIMETABLE .19PERSONAL EXAM RECORD .20

MESSAGE FROM THEEXECUTIVE DIRECTORDear Student,I would like to take this opportunity to welcomeyou to Stratford Career Institute and offer mycongratulations on your decision to continue youreducation! My staff and I are dedicated to helping yousuccessfully complete your course. With that in mind,we developed this Student Handbook. It will help youunderstand our academic policies and services, and offeryou a few tips on how to achieve the best results fromyour program.In many ways, studying in a distance-learning environment is nodifferent from studying in a traditional classroom. The main differences arethat you set your own study schedule and submit exams when you are ready.Believe it or not, the toughest part is just getting started. We know fromexperience that the sooner you begin your program, the easier it will be tocomplete it. Before you know it, you will have earned your diploma.As you progress through your studies, you will likely have questionsfrom time to time. Please take a few moments to review this booklet. It willhelp to answer most of your questions. If it does not, our staff is available toassist you.I wish you complete success with your studies and in your future as aStratford graduate!Yours truly,Luc RomanoExecutive Director1

MISSION STATEMENTStratford Career Institute offers distance educational programs to meet the vocational andintellectual needs of adult students. Our goal is to accommodate individuals in the furtheranceof their education or interests by offering guided, independent programs that are flexible,convenient and affordable. SCI programs provide students with the freedom to learn from theconvenience of their home, in their spare time, without the time constraints of classroomattendance.Equal OpportunitiesStratford Career Institute is committed to the principle of equal opportunity in education andemployment. The Institute does not discriminate against individuals on the basis of race, color,sex, sexual orientation, religion, disability, age, veteran status, or national or ethnic origin inthe administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, employment policies, andother Institute administered programs and activities.2

HOW TO STUDYThe package of study materials that you received is called a module. You will receive additionalmodules automatically, based on your submission of exams. It is important to submit each exam assoon as you complete it. Many times, students wait to send their exams all together. The result isthat they will not receive the next shipment promptly and end up waiting for more material to study.Each module contains all necessary material with at least one exam to complete and, in mostcases, three or four. Postage-paid envelopes are also included for your convenience. Use theseenvelopes to send your completed exams and other correspondence to the school.In each module, you will find your reading material and a student assignment booklet. The studentassignment booklet will guide you through your reading material much like an instructor would.It is important to follow the instructions in the student assignment booklet, because it will assistyou in determining the learning objectives and also guide you through the reading material.What Should I Study?Before you begin to study, you should always read the learning objectives located at thebeginning of each assignment. The learning objectives will indicate what you should havelearned once you have completed reading the assigned pages. For example, an objective mightsay, “After you have studied pages 1 to 115 of the reading material, you should be able to listthe three major forms of commercial transportation in the United States.” This is obviously animportant point, and you should be looking for this information as you read. Remember,learning is not guesswork. Use the objectives to help you study.Once you have examined the objectives, read and study the required pages. When you feelconfident that you have mastered the objectives, complete the exam associated with the lessonand submit it for grading.Occasionally, the student assignment booklet will provide tips on important material, whichyou should use to your advantage.How Should I Study?You would never go on a trip without havingsome sense of where you are going. Studyingyour reading material is no different. Theobjectives tell you what information to look foralong the way, and the headings in your readingmaterial will help you know where to find it.Skim the headings before you begin studyingand use them to help you identify key chapters.It really does help if you get acquainted with thematerial before you begin reading.Once you have reviewed the headings, begin reading. As you encounter a heading, turn it into aquestion. For example, suppose a heading says, “The Impact of Railroads in the United States.”Ask yourself, “What has been the impact of railroads in the U.S.?” You will find that this method3

focuses your attention and allows you to read more quickly and with a greater understanding.When you have completed the section, ask the question again and review the objectives.Now is the time to make notes, not before reading or after you have studied all of the readingmaterial. Making notes will help you in your review and also reinforce the points made in thereading material. You can make the notes right in your reading material by writing key wordsor phrases in the margin or by underlining or highlighting words or phrases in the text. Butremember, if you find yourself underlining or highlighting large blocks of text, it will not be aseffective. Grasp the essence of the content! Whenever possible, make short notes in your ownwords. You will absorb the information more effectively than attempting to remember theauthor’s words.What About Exercises and Quizzes?At the end of each reading assignment you may find exercises that pertain to the precedingtext. Although these assignments are not part of the exam submitted to the school for grading,it is important to complete these assignments for your own benefit. They will help you todetermine your understanding of the learning material. Complete each assignment carefullythen check your answers with those provided. If you discover you made an error, return to therelevant text to make sure you understand the correct answer.At the end of each study session, take a little time to review your notes and objectives. Thiswill help to reinforce what you have just studied. It is also a good idea to review your notesbefore you begin the next study session to refresh your memory.Where and When Should I Study?It is best if you answer this question. Different people choose different times and places to study.The most important thing is to decide where and when, then stick to it. Try to use the sameroom or location each time. It need not be special or fancy, but make sure you are comfortableand free from distractions. It should also be well lit and have ample space for your studymaterials.Decide how long a study session should be. As a rule of thumb, work in 45 to 50 minute intervals,then take a break or quit for the day. Many people report that a session is comprised of three distinctparts: a get ready part, a read and study part, and a review and summary part. Take this intoaccount when you decide when and how long your session should be. Set a session goal: I will finishreading Assignment 3 and complete the exam. But be realistic. We all have demands upon our timeand you should be flexible. It is far better to have a short study session than no session at all.Set a goal of possibly studying six to twelve hours per week. This may be broken down intothree sessions of two hours each, if you plan to study six hours a week, or six sessions of twohours each if you can manage twelve. Base your goal on how quickly you intend to finish eachmodule and how much time you can devote to your studies.4

Sample Study PlanUse the Study Objectives Timetable on page 19 to put your plan in writing. Here is an exampleto show you how this can be done. You will notice that the student in this example has set upfour sessions the first week based upon his or her schedule. Review this example, and thencomplete your own study plan.Study Objectives TimetableStudyschedule forthe week ofSUNMONTUESWEDTHURSFRISATJan 12 to 18When I planto studyPages in myreadingmaterialI plan tostudyDid Iaccomplishmyobjectives?What can Ido toimprove myplannedstudy time?Other studytimetableobservationsor problems7:30 pmto7:3 0 pm—to—to8:30 pm9:3 0 pm9 :0 0 pmlesson 4pages16to39Reviewlesson 4and workon thepracticeexercis esDo theexamforlesson 4———reviewneededto—12:00noon—Studypages1 - 35orlesson 5—completedNo , butMoreYes!9:00 am8 :0 0 pm—allexercisesNo, Idone!exam 4.- try to keep the kids quietly occupied while I am studying- reschedule study time on Wednesday so that I’m not distracted by the TV- try to work in an hour on Monday- make more notes - sometimes I need more “focus”I nee d to allow more time to do the practice exe rcises . I am mo reconf ide nt o f my unders tanding of the subject w he n I comple te the seproblems.5

EXAMINATIONSCompleting and Writing ExamsIn order for Stratford to determine how well you are doing, we require that you submitexaminations to the school for evaluation. The exam results provide feedback to you so thatyou can measure your comprehension. You may refer to your reading material and notes whileyou are completing an exam. Most of the exams offer multiple choices. Read the questioncarefully before making your selection.Other exams may be subjective, and you may be asked to prepare a written answer. If thequestion involves mathematics, be sure to show as much of your work as possible so that theinstructor can see how you arrived at your answer. The instructions that accompany each examwill tell you precisely what to do. Read them carefully.Submitting Exams by Mail, Fax, or On-lineStratford provides students with three ways in which to complete and submit exams. As well asbeing able to send exams by mail or fax, students are also encouraged to visit Stratford’s web siteat in order to complete and submit their multiple-choice exams on-line.When sending exams by mail or fax, follow the steps listedbelow:1.Read the questions carefully and write youranswers on a blank sheet of paper or in your exambooklet. Do not write them on the official answersheet yet.2.When you have completed the exam, review eachanswer carefully. For objective exams, make sureyou have selected the best answer and havewritten the corresponding letter.3.Transfer your answers to the answer sheetincluded with your exam. If you should lose ordamage the official answer sheet, you may use ablank sheet of paper, but be sure to write thelesson number and include your name andstudent number.4.Print your name, address and student number inthe space provided. Failure to include your studentnumber will result in a delay in grading your exam and shipment of the next module.5.Send only your completed answer sheet to the school using the envelope provided or fax itto us toll free at 1-888-486-9428. Be sure to keep a copy of your final answers in case theanswer sheet should be lost in the mail.6

When submitting exams on-line, follow the steps listed below:1.Go to Stratford’s web site at on the Student Login link. (You will need toregister for E-service the very first time)3.Click the “On-Line-Exam” link, and follow thedirections provided.4.Select your responses. For each of the numberedquestions, select the letter that corresponds toyour answer.5.Carefully verify all selections and information.6.Upon completion, click the SUBMIT button. Yourexam will immediately be sent to the school forgrading. Remember, once you have submittedyour examination, you will not have theopportunity to change your answers.7.An e-mail response will be sent to youimmediately, outlining your exam results.Stratford’s On-line Exam Center is the fastest way to receive your grades and new studylessons. However, only multiple-choice exams can be submitted on-line. Remember to keep awritten copy of the exam for your own records.Exam Policies and GradingThe responses to exam questions are expected to be your own. Obtaining help from someone tocomplete an exam is considered cheating and could result in disciplinary action, includingsuspension.You will receive a response from Stratford indicating how you scored on each exam. This mayinclude notes from the instructor indicating which answers are incorrect and references to thepages of the material that provide the correct answer. Be sure to follow up on these commentsto help you understand what the correct answer is and why yours was incorrect.It is also a good idea to write the date and your grade in your Personal Record, which appearsin the Appendix of this Handbook. This will help you to keep track of your progress.Always keep the graded exam response sheets that your instructor returns to you. The commentsand references will be particularly useful for future review.If you receive a numerical score of less than 70%, you will have the opportunity to retake theexam. If the score on the second attempt is 70% or more, you will be awarded with a grade of70%. You cannot receive a score higher than 70% when you complete a second attempt exam.If you do not achieve a passing grade on the second attempt, you will receive the higher scoreand equivalent grade.7

Student Integrity PolicyAs a Stratford student, you are permitted to seek instructional assistance from sourcesoutside of the school. However, you are expected to submit original work at all times.Knowingly submitting work that originated from another person is considered an act ofplagiarism and will result in a grade of zero.The responses to exam questions are expected to be your own. Obtaining assistance fromsomeone to complete an exam, or take an exam on your behalf, is considered cheating and isstrictly prohibited.If two or more students are found to have collaborated in the submission of exams and/orgraded assignments, all participants will receive grades of zero for the exam in question.Violators of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, which may include programsuspension. Repeat violations may result in expulsion from the school without compensation.Student ConductStratford’s staff and faculty strive to maintain an optimal level of communication betweenstudents and the school. Any and all forms of verbal or physical abuse are strictlyprohibited. Violations may result in expulsion from the school without compensation.GETTING HELP WHEN YOU NEED ITIt is important for you to know that Stratford is here to help you complete your program. You canrequest assistance either by phone, fax, letter, or by e-mail. Our instructors are here to provideyou with prompt, courteous, and helpful assistance. Don’t hesitate to ask for help if you need it.Stratford Web SiteThe SCI web site contains a wide range of information pertaining to your program. In addition,you can log into our secure server and access a variety of online features, such as request unofficialtranscripts, review exam grades, make a tuition payment or track a recent module shipment.Stratford Online LibraryAs a Stratford student, you have unlimited access to our online library. This useful serviceprovides you with access to books, periodicals, dictionaries and career resources. Please notethat you must be registered for e-service to use the library features.Writing to StratfordIf you wish to write to us for assistance, please use the special form included with each module.You may use this form to ask for instructional assistance or to inquire about service-related matterssuch as shipments or billing. Be sure to write clearly and include your name, student number,address, and a phone number where you can be reached during the day.8

Calling StratfordIf you would like to call the school, have your student number and specific question ready sothat we can properly answer your call. Instructors and student services representatives areavailable Monday through Thursday from 8:00am to 4:30pm and until 3:30pm EST on Friday.When you have a question about the content of your program itself, first try to find the answeron your own. You can gain great insight into the material by attempting to resolve the questionsyourself. In fact, that is what learning is all about. If you try and still can’t resolve your problem,assistance is available. Make a few notes about your question prior to calling. Have the programtitle and lesson number as well as topic and page number ready for reference, and your textbookopened to the page in question in case your instructor requires additional information. Whilean instructor may be able to resolve your issue immediately, a consultation or furtherinvestigation may be required in order to provide the necessary information. In such cases, theinstructor will get back to the student within a reasonable amount of time.If you are unable to call during our regular business hours, you may want to consider usingStratford’s automated telephone self-help features, available 24 hours a day, where you can obtaininformation on your last exam, find out when your last module was shipped, verify if your lastpayment was received, or even make a tuition payment. You may also visit our web site, whichcontains a wide range of helpful information and services.Whatever method you choose to contact the school, always remember to include your full nameand student number so that we can retrieve your information from our student files.SCI Contact Information: Web Site: E-mail: [email protected] Toll-free Student Services and Instruction Hotline: 1-888-308-2823 Toll-free Fax Line: 1-888-486-9428For U.S. students:For Canadian students:U.S. Shipping and MailingAddress:Head Office and CanadianMailing Address:Stratford Career Institute1 Champlain Commons, Unit 3P.O. Box 1560Saint Albans, VT 05478-5560Stratford Career Institute8675 Darnley RoadMount-Royal, QC H4T 1X29

Student ServicesThroughout the duration of your enrollment, your mainpoint of contact will be Stratford’s Student Servicesdepartment. The staff serve as your education supportteam and are trained to help students succeed. Ourinstructors can offer advice on how to get the most outof your program and are available to assist you in awide range of areas pertaining to your studies.You can contact our Student Services department byphone, email or via our website (see page 9 for moreinformation). Regardless of your preferred method ofcontact, you should always have your student numberhandy and be sure to include it in all correspondence.It is important to understand the type of assistancethat our Student Services department will provide andalso services that are not provided.Services providedServices NOT provided Instructional assistance Calling other schools on a Student account and tuitionstudent’s behalfpayment inquiries Contacting financial banks and eService issuesfinancial institutions Questions about study Calling prospective employersmaterial shipments Request for transcripts anddocuments General inquiriesProtecting your PrivacyStratford Career Institute is committed to protecting your privacy. We take every precautionto protect information pertaining to our students. We will not disclose a student’s academicrecord, or grades, except as required by law, or at the student’s personal request. Our PrivacyPolicy can be viewed in its entirety on our website (

ACADEMIC POLICIESEntrance RequirementsStratford has an open entrance policy. We believe that anyadult who feels that he or she has the potential andcapability to benefit from their selected program should begiven the opportunity to continue their education. However,as a general rule, students should have a minimum of eightyears of formal schooling.It is our policy to discourage application and enrollment of aminor who still attends a recognized elementary or secondaryschool. Application by minors who have not yet reached the ageat which they may legally leave school, and who are notattending a residential school, must be accompanied by a letterof explanation and consent from their parent or guardian.Advanced StandingA student may request advanced standing in a program of study if he or she can provide satisfactoryevidence of equivalent training or education. Applicants should submit an official transcript fromthe school at which the studies were completed to the Director of Education. The request will beevaluated to determine if the applicant can be exempted from any portion of a program.Transcripts and other documentation should be sent to Stratford Career Institute, Attn:Director of Education (see address on page 9).Completion TimeSCI courses are designed to be completed within one to two years. The average completion timefor an assignment is 15 to 20 hours. Actual completion time may vary, depending on the subjectmatter of the assignment and the ability and study habits of the student.GradesGrades are assigned for each examination submitted by the student. If the result of the examinationindicates that a student’s knowledge of the material is satisfactory, the student is credited withhaving met the requirements for that lesson. A score of 69% or lower is considered unsatisfactory,and the student will not receive credit for that lesson. A student may make a second attempt at anexam should he or she fail to achieve a passing grade the first time (see “Examinations”).11

Academic Probation and SuspensionA student whose work is unsatisfactory over a given period of time will be placed on academicprobation. Unsatisfactory work is defined as three consecutive failing grades. This includes examscores of 69% or lower that have not been made up and/or made up with a score of less than 70%.A student will be informed if he/she has been placed on academic probation. A school official willcontact the student to assess the potential source of the difficulties and will evaluate the situationto determine if the student has the capability to benefit from the program.The Director of Education will determine probationary status based upon a student’sperformance. A student may be removed from probationary status if he or she submits twosubsequent exams and achieves a satisfactory score.A student who does not qualify for academic reinstatement may be suspended at the discretionof the Director of Education.GRADUATIONCompletion DocumentsStratford Career Institute awards a diploma tostudents who have successfully completed allexaminations (attained a grade average of 70% orhigher) and have met all financial obligations.Students who achieve an average score of 90% orhigher will earn a “Diploma with Highest Honors.”The cost for an additional or replacement diploma is 25.00.Students who complete a program without obtaining a grade average of 70% will not be issueda diploma or certificate. However, a letter attesting to the student’s enrollment and coursecompletion can be provided upon request.TranscriptsAn official SCI transcript will be issued, at no charge, to each student upon completion of hisor her program. Transcripts requested through our web site are classified as “unofficial”transcripts because they do not bear the official seal of the school. Additional official transcriptsmay be requested at any time for a fee of 10.00 each by writing to Stratford Career Institute,Attn: Office of the Registrar (see address on page 9).12

DISPUTE RESOLUTION POLICYAll Stratford staff members who interact directly with students are subject to a professionalcode of conduct and our employee policies and guidelines. These policies are in compliance withtrade school regulations, the Better Business Bureau, and various professional associations.In the event that a dispute arises between a Stratford student and the school, or a particularstaff member at the school, a system has been established to ensure that the matter isinvestigated and resolved fairly, efficiently, and in keeping with the standards applicable to thecase.The Supervisor of Student Services has been designated as a liaison officer to facilitate thedispute settlement procedure. It is his or her responsibility to perform the following steps toensure that a proper investigation is initiated:1.The liaison officer will request written statements from all parties involved.2.The liaison officer will review the material and conduct a follow-up investigation, which mayprove necessary to uncover the facts of the matter.3.The liaison officer will prepare and issue a written decision on the matter and distribute copiesto all parties involved. The written statement will detail both the decision and the regulationpolicies and considerations that have served as a basis for that decision.In formulating a decision, the liaison officer will first attempt to determine if standard policiesand practices have been followed in the case at hand. If there has been a departure fromstandard practices, the decision will be made swiftly in favor of the student.Even when standard practice has been observed, the liaison officer shall consider the possibilityof extenuating circumstances that may warrant special consideration in the case at hand. Inthe event that both parties appear to be at fault, or where no fault can be determined (i.e., thematter results from a simple misunderstanding), every effort will be made to accommodate thestudent, who shall always receive the benefit of any doubt.In the event of an error or indiscretion on the part of a Stratford staff member, a copy of thereport shall also be given to that person’s immediate supervisor to be brought forward at theemployee’s subsequent performance evaluation or, in the extreme case, to be considered fordisciplinary action.Finally, the liaison officer shall periodically review all such reports, and make a summary tosenior management concerning them. In particular, he or she shall look for any trends orrecurring problems that might suggest that a policy or procedure is ineffective and should bechanged, or which may signal that further staff training is required. Senior management willhave the responsibility of ensuring that the liaison officer is fulfilling his or her dutiescompetently and in accordance with this policy, and that he or she continues to maintain theconfidence and cooperation of students, staff, and management.13

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONSQ. How often will I receive study material?A.The school will ship new material to study based upon your progress. The first module iswhat you currently h

Stratford provides students with three ways in which to complete and submit exams. As well as being able to send exams by mail or fax, students are also encouraged to visit Stratford's web site at in order to complete and submit their multiple-choice exams on-line. When sending exams by mail or fax, follow the steps listed .