Student Identity Verification

Statement of Policy

In compliance with the provisions of the United States Federal Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) of 2008, Public Law 110-315, concerning the verification of student identity in distance learning, Excelsior College has established and will periodically evaluate its process to confirm that a person who is enrolling in the College is the person who is completing the enrollment form, that a student taking an examination is the student who registered to take the examination and that the student who is registered for an online course is the same student who participates in, completes, and receives credit for the course. To authenticate identities, Excelsior College will use one or more of the following methods for verification:

  • A secure login with user name and password
  • Proctored examinations
  • New or emerging technologies and practices that are effective in verifying student identification

All methods of verifying student identity must protect the privacy of student information in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and any other applicable laws or regulations regarding the confidentiality of personally identifiable information, and the College's Privacy Policy.

Personally identifiable information collected by the College may be used as the basis for identity verification. This information may include a combination of the following:

  • Student ID number
  • Last 4 digits of the student's Social Security Number
  • At least 2 other pieces of information such as the student's email address on file, date of birth, address, or user name

Procedure

Identity verification for new students

All students who enroll at the College are requested to create a user account in MyExcelsior (with secure student user name and password) and are authenticated through an identity management system. Note that Army (Active Duty, Guard, and Reserve) students are exempt of this process because they registered through CTAM and their identities are verified by the Department of Defense.

Undergraduate Online Enrollment Form:

  1. Undergraduate student identity will be authenticated through a series of demographic questions unique to that student during the online enrollment process and must have an 80% pass rate to successfully verify their identity.
  2. Students will have the ability to attempt to answer an additional question if they do not answer all questions correctly the first time (bonus question).
  3. If students pass the identity test they will be allowed to continue with their online enrollment form having satisfied the identity confirmation process.
  4. Upon failure, students will receive a message that indicates they have not yet verified their identity and that is it required for enrollment at Excelsior College.
  5. They will be allowed to continue with the online enrollment form.
  6. They will be prompted to answer a series of 5 more questions (second attempt/exam) to verify their identity.
  7. If students pass the identity test, they will be allowed to continue with their online enrollment form having satisfied the identity confirmation process.
  8. If students do not verify their identity on the second attempt they will be prompted to print and complete the Student Identity Verification Form requiring a notary and return it to the College's Office of Registration and Records.
  9. Students have a total of 40 days from the date they submit the incomplete enrollment form to verify their identity. If on the 40th day they have not verified their identity, their deposit will be refunded less a $50 processing fee and they will not be an enrolled student at Excelsior College.

Graduate Online Application:

  1. Graduate student identity will be authenticated through a series of demographic questions unique to that student during the online application process and must have an 80% pass rate to successfully verify their identity.
  2. Students will have the ability to attempt to answer an additional question if they do not answer all questions correctly the first time (bonus question).
  3. If students pass the identity test they will be allowed to continue with their online application having satisfied the identity confirmation process.
  4. Upon failure, students will receive a message that indicates they have not yet verified their identity and that is it required for enrollment at Excelsior College.
  5. They will be allowed to continue with the online application.
  6. They will prompted to answer a series of 5 more questions (second attempt/exam) to verify their identity.
  7. If students pass the identity test, they will be allowed to continue with their online application having satisfied the identity confirmation process.
  8. If students do not verify their identity on the second attempt they will be prompted to print and complete the Student Identity Verification Form requiring notary and return it to the College's Office of Registration and Records.
  9. Students have a total of 40 days from the date they submit the incomplete application form to verify their identity. If on the 40th day they have not verified their identity, their deposit will be refunded less a $50 processing fee and their application canceled.

Paper Identity Verification Form:

Students having difficulty with the online identity authentication process and international students will be required to complete the College's paper process. If a student's identity is not verified, she or he will be unable to enroll in the College, register for classes or access online courses.

  1. Students required to verify their identity via the paper Student Identity Verification Form will be supplied a link to or mailed a paper form that requires notarization.
  2. They will be required to submit the original Student Identity Verification Form (including notary) to Excelsior College's Office of Registration and Records.
  3. Staff within the Office of Registration and Records will input receipt of the Student Identity Verification Form and satisfy the student requirement for enrollment.
  4. If students do not verify their identity 40 days from the date they submitted the incomplete enrollment form or application form their deposit will be refunded less a $50 processing fee and their enrollment terminated.

Identity Verification for Course Takers

  • Students seeking registration in online courses will provide appropriate identification to establish their identity.
  • MyExcelsior secure student user name and password will be required for coursework submitted online (see Policy 158 Student User Name and Password Assignment).

Identity Verification for Exam Takers

Students taking our examination curriculum for credit will be authenticated at the time of the exam at the testing center. One valid form of identification, with photo, is required for admission into the examination center. If the first ID is questioned by the test administrator a second valid photo ID will be required.