7.07 Computers, Networks and Technology Requirements

Office of the Registrar

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7.07 Computers, Networks and Technology Requirements

Students who are provided access to Medical School computer facilities and to the campus-wide communication network assume responsibility for their appropriate use. The Medical School expects students to be careful, honest, responsible, and civil in the use of computers and networks. Those who use wide-area networks (such as the Internet) to communicate with individuals or to connect to computers at other institutions are expected to abide by the rules for the remote systems and networks as well as those for Harvard’s systems. Be advised that, in addition to being a violation of School rules, certain computer misconduct is prohibited under Massachusetts General Laws, c.266 subsection 33 (a) and 12 (f) and is, therefore, subject to criminal penalties. Such misconduct includes knowingly gaining unauthorized access to a computer system or database, falsely obtaining electronic services or data without payment of required charges, and destroying of electronically processed, stored, or in-transit data. In addition, students may be held responsible for misuse that occurs by allowing access to a third party to their own computer or account. See also Section 3.10, Education Computing and MyCourses.

Use of Facilities

Computer and network facilities are provided to students primarily for their educational use. These facilities have tangible value. Consequently, attempts to circumvent accounting systems or to use the computer accounts of others will be treated as forms of attempted theft.

Students may not attempt to damage or to degrade the performance of Medical School computers and networks and should not disrupt the work of other users. Students may not attempt to circumvent security systems or to exploit or probe for security holes in any Harvard network or system, nor may students attempt any such activity against other systems accessed through Harvard’s facilities. Execution or compilation of programs designed to breach system security is prohibited unless authorized in advance. Students assume personal responsibility for the use of their accounts. Consequently, students may not disclose their passwords or otherwise make Harvard’s facilities available to unauthorized persons (including family or friends). Moreover, the possession or collection of others’ passwords, personal identification numbers (PINs), private digital certificates, or other secure identification information is prohibited. Use of Harvard’s computers and networks for business-related purposes without authorization is prohibited.

Mobile Device Requirement

Beginning in Academic Year 2012-2013, all first- and second-year MD and DMD students are required to have a “smart mobile” device.

Mobile devices will frequently be used in the classroom in conjunction with audience response systems. The Program in Medical Education, through the Office of Curriculum Services, will distribute information about audience response software to all New Pathway and HST MD students and DMD students in Years I and II. There is no additional cost for this application.  Other free and discounted medically-related mobile applications can be downloaded from MyCourses.

The operating system of your mobile device must be android 2.3 (or higher) or Apple iOS 4.1 (or higher).  The device must be WiFi capable. Students may choose their own devices (tablets or smartphones), e.g., iPad, Galaxy Tab, iPhone, Droid Razr Maxx, iPod Touch 4th gen.  

Students are expected to carry their charged mobile device to all course-related activities. All venues that require student participation with a mobile device will have WiFi available, so using a device with WiFi connectivity for this purpose will not incur a fee for the user. 

NB: Although not expressly prohibited from meeting this mobile requirement, laptops are not recommended since they are not as portable as phones and tablets and often have greater power consumption, which may not be accommodated for in venues such as the large amphitheaters.

Financial concerns related to this requirement: The books & supplies portion of the 2013-14 HMS student cost of attendance budget is sufficient to cover any additional charges incurred by this expense (purchase of phone, increased monthly telephone charges).  Budget adjustment requests to increase financial aid for this purpose will not be approved.

Student Computing Ethics

As in all other areas of your academic life, the use of computing technology should be undertaken in a manner consistent with the high standards of professional conduct appropriate to the field of medicine. In addition, the internet and electronic mail may create additional challenges to health care professionals’ responsibility for ensuring patient confidentiality. To protect this fundamental patient right, you should not use this medium to transmit information containing patient names or other medical records data that may be used to identify individual patients. When you are doing clinical rotations at our affiliated teaching hospitals, your strict compliance with patient confidentiality rules and regulations is expected, and lapses are subject to disciplinary procedures.

Caution is recommended as well in using social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter. The profession of medicine is founded on the highest standards of conduct. In admitting a student to HMS, we believe you have already demonstrated that your behavior in person – both on campus and off – and in your electronic presence reflects the maturity and civility that are the necessary underpinnings of the profession. After you are admitted, enrollment remains contingent on a continuation of this high standard of conduct. Items that represent unprofessional behavior that are posted by you on social networking sites reflect poorly on you and on the medical profession. Such items may become public and could subject you to unintended exposure and consequences. When students are in the hospitals or other clinical settings, they must adhere to each clinical institution’s privacy and social media policies (e.g., see MGH social media policy at http://www.massgeneral.org/notices/socialmediapolicy.aspx).

Emergency Notification System

All students are required to sign up to receive emergency notifications from Harvard University’s Community Emergency Notification System called MessageMe, which allows the University to quickly distribute critical information to you, wherever you are located, during an emergency.

MessageMe helps you to stay informed in the event of an emergency by sending alerts to your personal electronic device (cell phone, pda, smartphone, etc.) through text messaging, voice, and/or e-mail.

Students can sign up for the Emergency Notification Service by going to https://messageme.harvard.edu/ or through MyCourses (http://mycourses.med.harvard.edu/). Instructions for MyCourses are as follows: Click on My Account in the upper right corner of the page, click on Email Settings. Click on the button, Register/Update MessageMe under the MessageMe Preferences panel and follow the directions to register for this service.

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