General Information

This handbook has been compiled to help faculty and staff prepare for the summer session of the Bread Loaf School of English. It also provides an all-in-one reference for Bread Loaf and Middlebury policies that affect employment. Campus Information pages, which will be posted on the Bread Loaf website in May, will provide supplementary details, specific to each campus’ operations for the upcoming summer. The Bread Loaf staff is always available to address any additional questions.

Middlebury endeavors to present an accurate overview of the programs and facilities of the Bread Loaf School of English in this publication. However, Middlebury reserves the right to alter any policy, program, facility, or fee, described in this publication without notice or obligation. Printed copies of this handbook are available upon request from the Bread Loaf School of English. Updates to this handbook that may become necessary during the course of the year are made on the web and shall supersede wholly any prior versions of the handbook. Please consult the Web version of the handbook for the most up-to-date information.

Reasonable accommodations will be provided for persons with disabilities who need assistance in reviewing the handbook. All Middlebury Bread Loaf School of English employees are also subject to the Middlebury College Handbook.

Mission Statement

By offering first-rate graduate education in literature and related fields during a full-time summer session, Bread Loaf School of English offers unparalleled opportunities for teachers and other professionals at all stages of their careers to deepen their intellectual awareness and engagement and to become powerful critical thinkers, writers, and educational leaders.

Nondiscrimination Statement

The full text of Middlebury’s Nondiscrimination Statement is available online. Printed copies are available from Bread Loaf, Human Resources, or a Human Relations Officer. Discrimination complaints should be directed to a Human Relations Officer or the Bread Loaf dean.

Because of varying circumstances and legal requirements, such provisions may not apply to programs offered by Middlebury outside the U.S. This is consistent with Middlebury’s intent to comply with the requirements of applicable law. Individuals with questions about the policies governing such programs should direct inquiries to the Bread Loaf dean, Emily Bartels.

Accessibility and ADA Statement

Faculty ADA Accommodations

Middlebury will endeavor to make reasonable accommodations for any faculty covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Information and request forms are available at

ADA Statement

Middlebury recognizes and supports the standards set forth in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended (ADA), and applicable state laws, which prohibit discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities, on the basis of disability. Disabilities may include physical or mental impairments which substantially limit one or more of a person’s major life activities, and which necessitate modifications to Middlebury’s facilities, programs, or services. Middlebury is committed to making reasonable accommodations for qualifying students, faculty, and employees with disabilities as required by applicable laws. Middlebury is also committed to making the campus and its facilities accessible as required by applicable laws. Middlebury cannot make accommodations that are unreasonable, unduly burdensome or that fundamentally alter the nature of its programs.

Middlebury designates the Civil Rights & Title IX Coordinator to coordinate its efforts to comply with and carry out its responsibilities under Section 504. Individuals with concerns regarding Middlebury’s compliance with such laws may contact the Compliance Officer/Title IX Coordinator or the ADA Coordinator.

Middlebury’s ADA Policy applies to all Bread Loaf students. The process for obtaining accommodations and services is set forth in the ADA Policy, which is available from Student Accessibility Services in a variety of accessible formats.

To initiate the accommodation process, a student must file an Accommodation Request Form for Summer Programs, which is provided to each student upon acceptance. The form should be submitted along with the required documentation directly to the Student Accessibility Services online or at the address found on the front of the form by May 1. (If accommodations are not requested on time, it may be impossible for Middlebury to provide them in the earlier portions of the summer program.) See also the Service and Assistance Animals Policy regarding the form, required documentation, Middlebury’s process for obtaining accommodations, and other related requirements is available on the website at and

Please note that Middlebury is not responsible for services of a personal nature. Students are encouraged to consider obtaining a personal assistant or personal care attendant if they are unable to function independently on campus.

The information that a student provides regarding any special needs will be shared only with those individuals involved in the coordination and facilitation of services and accommodations required to make our programs accessible to him or her.

Only the ADA Committee and/or Student Accessibility Services are authorized to determine the eligibility of all students who request accommodations for their disabilities. Questions regarding disabilities and requests for accommodations will be handled promptly. Please see the contact information below.

Student Accessibility Services

Jodi Litchfield, ADA Coordinator
802-443-7437 (TTY)

Public Health Emergencies

In the unlikely event that a pandemic disease (such as avian or swine flu) shows signs of affecting the Bread Loaf community, the School may need to shut down. Middlebury advises that all students, faculty, and staff have contingency plans for evacuating to an alternative destination (home, a friend’s house, e.g.) should conditions warrant.

Program Contacts

See the Contact Us page for the most recent Bread Loaf School of English contact information.

Middlebury College Contacts

Human Resources

(802) 443-5465

Technology Help Desk
(802) 443-2200 between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. (EST)

International Student and Scholar Services

(802) 443-5858

Department of Public Safety

(802) 443-5133
Emergency: (802) 443-5911

Employment, Policies, and Benefits

Bread Loaf faculty and staff are considered “at will” employees of Middlebury College (which means that either the College or the employee can terminate the employment relationship at any time, for any or no reason). Continuation of employment beyond the term designated in the appointment letter does not alter the at-will nature of employment. (See the Middlebury College Employee Handbook: Because of the limited hours faculty will be working for Middlebury College, they are not eligible to receive health and welfare benefits.

Activating Middlebury Accounts

All faculty and staff receive a Middlebury account that allows access to library resources, Middlebury email accounts, Oracle, Zoom, BannerWeb, and Vermont and California wifi and on-campus computer access. Campus-wide emergency notifications, important Human Resources communications, and training links will be sent to your Middlebury email account, so be certain to check that account regularly or have your email forwarded to your regular email account. 

New faculty and staff will receive an email with instructions on how to activate accounts in May. Faculty who have taught for Bread Loaf in the prior summer may continue to access their Middlebury accounts. Oracle access will be activated for all faculty and staff (new and returning) in May.

To change a password when the existing password is known, please go to To reset a password when the existing password is unknown, please go to The complete range of self-service password options are outlined here:

Middlebury accounts are required to be protected by Multi-factor Authentication (MFA), a security technology that keeps accounts safe from potential compromise by requiring the use of more than just a username and password to prove your identity during login. The first time you login to an MFA-protected service, such as BannerWeb, you will be prompted to complete MFA setup if you have not already done so. Find more information about MFA and MFA setup options here. You can initiate setup yourself by visiting and following these steps We strongly suggest that you configure MFA using the Microsoft Authenticator app to facilitate international travel.  A text message to a phone number may fail when you are out of cellular service range or traveling internationally. Your Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) settings can be changed by visiting and authenticating at

If you need a password or MFA reset ITS must first verify your identity to proceed. Please call ITS Helpdesk (802) 443-2200 or connect via Zoom; career Helpdesk staff can assist you from 8:15 am - 4:30 pm ET, Monday - Friday.

Housing Benefits


BLSE provides room for all summer employees. The Bread Loaf office arranges both on-campus and off-campus housing. Ordinarily, employees who opt to live off-campus when on-campus housing is available will need to secure their own rentals and to cover the difference between the cost of campus housing and the rental cost. We also provide board in the form of a meal plan at the Vermont and Oxford campuses and a per diem for meals at the California campus.


BLSE provides housing for the partners/spouses and dependent children (under age 18) of faculty; this benefit also covers caregivers for children under 12. At the Vermont and Oxford campuses, we also provide board for faculty partner/spouses and children under 6 years old at no cost; there, faculty may purchase meal tickets for other family members and caregivers who would like to eat in the Bread Loaf dining halls.

Some of these housing and board benefits will be taxed as part of the employee’s imputed income. See the chart below.

Staff need to secure special permission from the BLSE dean to bring family.


We are increasingly unable to secure pet-friendly housing. Though we can accommodate service animals for faculty, faculty who elect to bring non-service pets may need to find and subsidize their own off-campus housing (see the “Employees” section above).


BLSE is not able to provide housing or board benefits for long-term guests of our employees. Friends and extended family of employees are welcome to purchase meal tickets to eat in Bread Loaf dining halls, but they will need to find and finance their own off-campus housing.

Room and Board Policy for Faculty and Their Partners and Dependents

Relation to Employee Room Board
Self no charge; tax on off-campus housing exceeding local fair-market value for individual no charge at VT & OX campus; subsidized by per diem at CA campus
Partner/spouse no charge if same room as employee taxed
Dependent children 6 years and under no charge if same room as employee; taxed if separate room no charge
Dependent children 7-18 years taxed $20/day at VT campus; $25/day at OX campus
Caregiver taxed $20/day at VT campus; $25/day at OX campus
Extended family not provided meal tickets available for purchase at VT and OX campuses

Additional Benefits

Medical Services

Campus Information pages detail medical services available at each campus. We encourage faculty and staff to let the campus coordinator know if there is medical information that might assist us in an emergency.

*Health Insurance

All employees are expected to be covered by their own health insurance plans during the period that they are onsite at Bread Loaf.

Employee and Family Assistance Program

Bread Loaf faculty and staff are covered by Middlebury’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP), which provides a number of confidential services, free of charge, for employees and members of their households, who may be experiencing problems that adversely affect their mental, emotional, or physical well-being.  More information is available on the Human Resources website.

Voluntary Retirement Plan

Bread Loaf faculty and staff are eligible to participate in Middlebury’s Voluntary Retirement Plan. Although there is no employer contribution to this plan, they are allowed to make their own tax-deferred contributions to a retirement account. Further information is available on the Human Resources website and at the Office of Human Resources on the main Middlebury campus.

Course Fee Reduction for Employees

Full-time summer faculty and staff and their spouses, domestic or civil union partners, and full-time year-round Middlebury staff and full-time academic year faculty members with ongoing contracts and their spouses, domestic or civil union partners may take Bread Loaf courses for credit for $100 per unit as course enrollments allow. Permission to register for a particular course may be withheld because of limited space. For eligibility, summer employees have a waiting period of one summer, and year-round employees must have worked for Middlebury for one year. In both cases, the dean’s permission is required, and the applicant must submit a full application for admission. For more information, contact Dianne Baroz at

Employee Documents

Appointment Letters

Faculty receive appointment letters in the winter, and staff members in the spring, prior to summer session employment. Appointment letters include the dates of the session and details of the employment agreement. Faculty will receive additional mailings in the spring, including information on the Canvas course management system.

Required Employment Documents

The Office of Human Resources at Middlebury College handles all required employment documents and will contact employees regarding documents they will need to provide.

  • I-9 Form: U.S. federal law requires that all new Bread Loaf faculty and staff, working in the U.S., complete an I-9 Employment Eligibility Form by the first day of employment, verifying that they are eligible to work in the United States. New employees will need to provide appropriate documentation, as specified in the I-9 instructions. The Middlebury Office of Human Resources will contact returning faculty and staff via email if they must submit a Form I-9.
  • W-4 Form: All U.S. faculty and staff, working at any campus (in the U.S. or U.K.) must have a W-4 on file. The Middlebury Office of Human Resources will contact employees to indicate whether they must complete this form. Middlebury’s International Student and Scholar Services at (802) 443-5858 or can answer questions about visa status.


The State of Vermont tax laws dictate that a paycheck cannot be distributed prior to the work being performed. U.S. faculty and staff salaries will be distributed in biweekly installments during the summer session. Checks will be mailed to the home addresses of faculty and staff on any pay dates that fall outside the Bread Loaf summer session.

Direct Deposit

Faculty and staff may elect to have their paychecks directly deposited into U.S. bank accounts, using Oracle HCM; they can also use Oracle HCM to view or update their direct deposit information.


We aim to prepare all students to engage in complex thought through the interpretation of literary and critical texts and to write persuasive and original essays.

Learning Goals and Basic Curriculum

Learning Goals

We expect all MA. students to acquire broad familiarity with the fields of British, American, and world literature; and MLitt students to design and master a specialization with the fields of literature, pedagogy, or creative arts. We prepare students in the Bread Loaf Teacher Network to use new technologies to understand and develop effective teaching and learning practices.


The Bread Loaf curriculum is divided into six groups:

Group 1 Writing, Pedagogy, and Literacy
Group 2 British Literature: Beginnings through the Seventeenth Century
Group 3 British Literature: Eighteenth Century to the Present
Group 4 American Literature
Group 5 World Literature
Group 6 Theater Arts


Course Catalog

The Bread Loaf catalog is posted on the Bread Loaf website in December. It includes course descriptions and text lists (with readings listed in the order that they will appear on the syllabus), dates and fees, and a general description of the Bread Loaf program. For reference, recent course catalogs are available at

Course Descriptions, Syllabi, and CVs

Course descriptions will be published on the Bread Loaf website and in the Bread Loaf catalog in December prior to the summer term. Students refer to these not only in making their course selections but also in doing the course reading in advance of the summer (as we advise strongly).

  • Faculty will be asked to submit course descriptions in October/November of the appointment year.
  • Course titles should be no more than 50 characters in length, and descriptions should be no more than 150 words maximum (not counting the text lists).
  • Descriptions must include all required texts, listed in the order in which they will appear on the syllabus. Faculty must include the full title, author, current ISBN number, edition, and publisher for each text. This information will help us make sure that required texts are in print and available for student purchase.
  • For U.S. campuses only, faculty planning to use a substantial amount of supplemental material should create a course pack; course packs do need to be listed in text list appended to the course description. Faculty interested in this option should contact Karen Browne for details and will need to submit a full copy of the course pack to her by January 15. The Middlebury College bookstore will handle copyright, pricing, and distribution.
  • All faculty are expected to submit an updated c.v. along with a copy of each course syllabus at the opening of the summer session.

Course Texts and Reserves

Bread Loaf does not provide desk copies; faculty should bring their own copies of course texts.

Vermont and New Mexico faculty may request that books be placed on reserve by submitting a library reserve request form. The form asks for author, title, publisher, and copyright date for each text. Reserve forms must be returned to Karen Browne by April 15. Previous reserve lists are available upon request.

Program Options

Students may attend Bread Loaf for one or more summers of continuing graduate education, or, depending on their eligibility, they may earn an MA or MLitt degree over four to five summers. All applicants are held to the same admission standards, and all students must fulfill the same expectations in the classroom.

MA Program

The MA program aims to give students a broad familiarity with the fields of British, American, and world literature. To be eligible for admission, MA applicants must already hold a BA (in any discipline). The requirements are as follows:

  • Students must complete ten units within a 10-year period (though, under exceptional circumstances, may apply for an extension of that time (see Credits), receiving a B- or better in each; no thesis is required for the degree.
  • Each candidate must complete the following distributional requirements (five total):
    • one unit from Group 2
    • one unit from Group 3
    • one unit from Group 4
    • one unit from Group 5
    • one additional unit from any of these groups.

The remaining five units required for the degree are electives and may come from any of the six groups.

  • MA candidates admitted before 2013 have the option, instead of taking the following distributional requirements (six total):
    • two units from Group 2
    • two units from Group 3
    • one unit from Group 4
    • one unit from Group 5

The remaining four units required for the degree are electives and may come from any of the six groups. Students selecting this option may request permission from the dean to replace any one of the courses in the required groups with an elective.

  • All MA candidates must attend the Vermont campus for at least one summer. We encourage students to attend as many campuses as possible, to take full advantage of the diversity of the campus and curricular offerings.

MLitt Program

The MLitt program aims to provide students in-depth understanding of a specialized concentration within literary study and the allied areas of writing, pedagogy, and theater arts. Excellent preparation for students hoping to pursue a PhD in English, it also gives advanced students an opportunity to pursue a program of study that they can tailor to their own professional and intellectual needs.

While the coherence of an MLitt program depends on the connections that the degree candidate makes among his or her classes, within a class MLitt students are like any other students: that is, they must fulfill the specific requirements demanded by the course. Where possible and appropriate, they may ask to pursue work that brings other parts of their program to bear on class assignments, but faculty will decide if such work suits the goals of the course.


Applicants to the MLitt program must hold a BA in any discipline and an MA in English and have an outstanding record of accomplishment in that degree program. Their graduate record and application materials will need to evidence strong skills in critical thinking and writing, as well as an ability to design and pursue focused research and writing.

Requirements (for students entering the MLitt program in summer 2024)*

To earn the MLitt, students must complete ten units of study, including seven units in a field of concentration, which the student designs in consultation with the BLSE director. In the final summer and as part of their field courses, students must also enroll in one unit of mentored independent study (MLitt Capstone) to complete a focused research and writing project in their field.

  • Students have ten years to complete the degree, though students may finish in five, taking a course load of two units per summer. To speed up the clock, with the approval of the BLSE director, students may count up to two units of graduate study from another accredited institution towards the degree. With the permission of the BLSE director, candidates with exceptional records may also take a course overload at BLSE of three units per summer.
  • Only courses in which students earn a B- or above will count towards the degree.  Students who earn a B in any course will be put on Academic Probation until their academic record improves. 
  • Students must spend at least one of their MLitt summers at Bread Loaf’s main campus in Vermont. Beyond that, they may attend any of our campuses. Or they may opt to take up to four units (including the MLitt Capstone) online.
  • Students will meet each summer (online or in person) with the BLSE director, who will guide their progress towards the degree as well as their planning for the MLitt Capstone project.

*MLitt students who entered the degree program before 2024 may opt to complete the new requirements or they may complete the degree under the prior requirements.  

The Field of Concentration

Each candidate will design and pursue a field of concentration, based on the courses offered in the BLSE curriculum. Applicants will propose a field preliminarily, and admitted students will work with the BLSE director in the initial MLitt summer to map out a program of study.

The MLitt Capstone

As part of their course load for the final summer, MLitt candidates will enroll in the MLitt Capstone at any of our campuses or online. The Capstone is a mentored independent study that will guide the research and writing for a major project in a specific area of the field. The Capstone will count as one unit of credit in the student’s selected field.   

MLitt Capstone Project:

  • The project (roughly 7,000-8,000 words) should build on an area – an issue, approach, author, text or set of texts – drawn from one or more of the field courses and must be supported by substantial textual or contextual research (a bibliography of 25-30 entries).  
  • Though the work must demonstrate sustained critical thinking, students may pursue critical, creative, pedagogical, or a combination of approaches to the texts or topics in question.
  • As part of the Capstone requirements, students will give 10-15 minute presentations of their work at the end of the session.

MLitt Capstone Process:

  • Students will submit drafts of their project proposals by the third week of October before the final summer, in preparation for advising meetings with the BLSE director the week after. Final proposals are due by December 5.
  • In January of the final MLitt year, students will be assigned a faculty mentor. Though most of the writing on the project will be completed during the final summer, students will meet with their advisors in January for preliminary guidance on the proposed reading and research and again in the spring, to set parameters and goals for an initial writing sample, due on the first day of the session.

Continuing Education

Students may enroll for continuing graduate education on a summer-by-summer basis and will receive a Certificate in Continuing Graduate Education indicating the number of semester-hour credits they have completed successfully. Continuing education students are subject to the same conditions and policies as students in the degree programs, and they may take advantage of all that Bread Loaf offers, including membership in the Bread Loaf Teacher Network. Students in good standing may elect to continue for the degree.

Advanced Undergraduate Education

Undergraduates with outstanding academic records and who have completed the equivalent of three undergraduate years are eligible for admission to Bread Loaf in the summer between their junior and senior year. Candidates may apply the credits to the bachelor’s degree (as the degree granting institution permits); or, once they have earned a BA, students may apply the Bread Loaf credits to a Bread Loaf MA. A course that has been applied to an undergraduate degree cannot be used for graduate credit in the future.

Princeton Bread Loaf Fellows

Bread Loaf maintains a partnership with Princeton University, which sends up to five of its top English majors to the Oxford campus each summer. Our shared goal is to provide these rising seniors culturally-linked experience in advanced research which prepares them for thesis writing in their upcoming senior year. The Fellows will take a normal course load and will be evaluated in the same way as all other Bread Loaf students; they will also participate in a pro-seminar, run by an on-site mentor from the Princeton faculty and focused on their particular thesis work.

Special Course Options

Directed Research & Writing

The Directed Research & Writing (DRW), an online option, allows students opportunities to work closely with faculty on sustained independent research and mentored writing. The mainstay of the writing and revision takes place online across the 6-week summer session (coinciding with Vermont session dates), though students will complete the preliminary reading and research beforehand. Details of the DRW option are outlined in the student handbook.

Teaching Load

The dean will work with each faculty member to determine courses for the summer session, balancing the needs of the program with the preferences of the faculty.


The normal teaching load for Bread Loaf faculty at all campuses consists of two courses; the load may be reduced to one, depending on the needs of the program and the faculty member. Any course that is under-enrolled may be cancelled before the start of the summer session.

Class Size

At the U.S. campuses, literature courses are capped at 18 students, courses in the teaching of writing at 15, and creative writing and some theater arts courses at 12. Oxford classes run in a seminar/tutorial format and are ordinarily capped at 6–8.

Course Scheduling

While we do our best to give all faculty their preferences, class schedules are determined first with an eye to curricular needs.

  • All faculty are expected to meet their classes as scheduled throughout the summer term. Faculty may miss a class only with the permission of the dean and must reschedule cancelled classes at a time convenient for all affected students.
  • Middlebury College and Bread Loaf are open on holidays (i.e., July 4) during the summer session.

Academic Policies and Resources

Advising and Course Registration

Academic Advising

Faculty should expect to meet individually with each of their students throughout the summer, to discuss the student’s work and progress. Faculty should notify the Bread Loaf dean or on-site director if any student problems arise.

Course Selection

The following policies apply to students’ course selections:

  • A student may take only one course by a given professor in a single summer.
  • MA students may take only one creative writing course (including those that are cross-listed) in a single summer.
  • Courses are identified by a four-digit course number. Students may only repeat a course of a given number with prior permission of the dean. Students may, however, take a creative writing course twice, as long as the instructor is different each time; no preapproval needed.
  • Students requesting permission to take three courses (including the completion of an IRP as a third course) need to obtain approval from the associate director (via their campus coordinator) prior to course registration.
  • When a course is full, students will be added to a waitlist maintained by the Bread Loaf office staff. Faculty willing to exceed the enrollment cap may give students special permission to take a closed class but must notify the campus coordinator in order to get the student on the books.

Academic Honesty

Bread Loaf follows the Middlebury College policy on academic honesty. As an academic community devoted to the life of the mind, Middlebury requires of every student complete intellectual honesty in the preparation of all assigned academic work.


Plagiarism is a violation of intellectual honesty. Plagiarism is passing off another person’s work as one’s own. It is taking and presenting as one’s own the ideas, research, writings, creations, or inventions of another. It makes no difference whether the source is a student or a professional in some field. For example, in written work, whenever as much as a sentence or key phrase is taken from the work of another without specific citation of the source, the issue of plagiarism arises.

Paraphrasing is the close restatement of another’s idea using approximately the language of the original. Paraphrasing without acknowledgment of authorship is also plagiarism and is as serious a violation as an unacknowledged quotation.

Graded assignments should be the work of the individual student, unless otherwise directed by the instructor.

The individual student is responsible for ensuring that his or her work does not involve plagiarism. Ignorance of the nature of plagiarism or of Middlebury rules may not be offered as a mitigating circumstance. Students with uncertainties and questions on matters relating to footnoting, citation of sources, paraphrasing lecture notes, and proper recognition of collaborative work on homework assignments and laboratory reports should consult with the course instructor for whom they are preparing work.


Cheating is defined as giving or attempting to give or receive during an examination any aid unauthorized by the instructor.

Duplicate Use of Written Work

A paper submitted to meet the requirements of a particular course is assumed to be work completed for that course; the same paper, or substantially similar papers, may not be used to meet the requirements of two different courses, in the same or different terms, without the prior consent of each faculty member involved. Students incorporating similar material in more than one paper are required to confirm each professor’s expectations in advance. Violations of this policy will be handled in the same way as other policy violations.

In cases of suspected violations

  • Faculty will report the violation, with supporting evidence to the dean or, if she or he is not available, designee (associate director, on-site director), detailing the correlation between the student’s work and all unacknowledged sources.
  • The dean or designee will review the pertinent information and, when appropriate, notify the student of the allegations and give him or her an opportunity to respond to them.
  • The dean or designee will make a determination based on the preponderance of the evidence standard as to whether the student has violated policy. During this process, the rules of evidence applicable to civil or criminal cases do not apply.
  • In cases where plagiarism is judged to be present, the student will receive an F on the work involved and will be put on permanent academic probation; he or she may also be dismissed from the program. These actions will be accompanied by notification of any other institution in which the student is enrolled.
  • The student may appeal the decision to the vice president for academic affairs and dean of the schools within three business days of the determination. The appeal must be based on one or more of the following grounds, and not simply on disagreement with the decision:
  • new information not previously available (deliberate omission by the student of information will not support an appeal);
  • violation of stated procedures when the violation prevented fundamental fairness. A determination that a material procedural error has occurred may result in a rehearing of the case using correct procedures, but a procedural error is not a factor in reducing a sanction when the appeal upholds a finding of guilt. Immaterial procedural errors will not be grounds for a rehearing;
  • significant mitigating circumstances.

The appeal must be in writing (email or hard copy), and must state the grounds for the appeal as well as an outline of supporting evidence. The student will be notified of the appeal decision within five business days of the receipt of the appeal, unless there are extenuating circumstances. The vice president’s decision shall be final.


Members of the Bread Loaf community may audit courses at our main campus in Vermont. The following conditions and fees apply.

  • Auditing is not permitted in any Group 1 (Writing, Pedagogy, and Literacy) or Group 6 (Theater Arts) courses.
  • Enrolled Bread Loaf students may audit courses free-of-charge with the permission of the faculty member. To get approval to audit, students should contact the relevant faculty member during the first week of the Bread Loaf Vermont session, before the first meeting of the class.
  • Bread Loaf staff may audit courses free-of-charge with the permission of the Bread Loaf dean or director and the relevant faculty member. Approval from the dean/director (which may be requested in advance of the session) will depend on whether the auditing will interfere with job performance. Staff should seek approval from faculty during the first week of the session (before the first class meeting) only after they’ve gotten approval from the dean/director.
  • Bread Loaf alums and partners of enrolled BLSE students may audit courses at a cost (per course) of half the per course tuition. They will need to get permission from the BLSE dean or director and from the course faculty once the session begins.
  • In all cases, faculty set the terms of the auditing experience, which may include a commitment to complete all the course reading, to attend every class, to participate fully in class discussions and other classwork, et al.
  • Participants do not get credit for auditing courses, and audited courses are not recorded on Middlebury transcript.

Enrollment and Attendance

Class Enrollments and Drop/Add

At registration, faculty will receive initial rosters of students currently registered in their courses. Students will have until 5 p.m. on the third class day to drop or add courses. All drop/add assignments are managed by the campus coordinators: faculty should not authorize a drop/add on their own or admit additional students to their courses without contacting the campus coordinator. Faculty will receive revised rosters at the end of the drop/add period and should inform their campus coordinator of any discrepancies between the list and the students who attend.

Class Attendance

Class attendance is mandatory, and faculty should let the dean or on-site director know immediately (with a copy to the campus coordinator) if a student has missed a class or develops a habit of coming to class late. When necessary, we give students with unavoidable job commitments permission to arrive to the session late or depart early, and we allow missed classes in the case of family or medical emergencies. The office will be in touch with the faculty about these arrangements. In all cases, it is the responsibility of the student to make arrangements with faculty (in advance if possible) to make up all missed work.

Course and Program Evaluations

Course Evaluations

For the collective benefit of the program and the faculty, students will be asked to provide, anonymously, an evaluation of each of their Bread Loaf courses at the end of the summer session. To ensure maximum response, we ask that faculty allot 15 minutes of one class in the final week for this assessment. Faculty will receive a packet of forms (with instructions) from the campus office and will be asked to choose one student to distribute and collect the forms at the end of one class session, after the faculty member leaves the room. The supervising student will then return the forms to the campus office immediately after class.

The forms will ask students to respond to the following questions:

  • How effective was the overall design of course (topic, syllabus, reading load, assignments)?
  • What was the overall quality of instruction?
  • What was your prior preparation or level of achievement in the subject matter?
  • Which, if any, of your skills (interpretation, writing, performing, speaking) have improved as a result of the course, and in what ways?
  • (How) has the course added to your professional development?
  • How might the course be improved?

Faculty will receive copies of the evaluations in early fall. The dean will review all evaluations before officially reappointing faculty and will reach out to faculty to discuss any significant issues or problems that the evaluations raise.

Program Evaluations

Faculty will be asked to evaluate the Bread Loaf program and submit the evaluations digitally to the campus coordinator. This feedback about our orientation program, facilities, library and digital resources, curriculum and cocurricular activities, office support, and other areas will help us in our self-assessment.

Grades and Student Evaluations

Grading at Bread Loaf should reflect the grading faculty do at their home institutions for students at the master’s level. Bread Loaf uses a letter grade system—from A to F:

Grade Definition
A/A+ very strong
A- to B+ very strong
B satisfactory
B- passing but problematic
C+ or below failing work
F incomplete performance

The following policies apply:

  • Students will not receive credit for courses in which they have earned a C+ or lower.
  • MA and non-degree students who have earned one B-, and MLitt students who have earned one B, in a Bread Loaf course will be placed on academic probation until their record improves. During that time, their course and campus choices will need to be preapproved by the dean.
  • MA and non-degree students who have earned more than one B-, and MLitt students who have earned more than one B, or students who have earned a grade of C+ or lower may be denied readmission to the program.

Submission of Grades

Grades are submitted electronically on BannerWeb, during the last week of the summer session (see the Campus Information Sheets for dates). Faculty will use their Middlebury usernames and passwords to log in to BannerWeb from the Middlebury College homepage ( and select the following menus: Faculty and Advising; Faculty Services; Grades: Grade Roster for ALL Students. The course and student lists where grades are to be posted will appear once the appropriate term (summer 20xx) is selected.

Grade Appeals

Any student wishing to appeal a grade may do so by speaking first to the instructor of the course. If no resolution is reached, the student may appeal the grade officially in writing to the BLSE dean within 90 days of the grade submission. The appeal must include the original, graded copies of all relevant course work and a detailed explanation of what, in the grading process, the student believes to be unfair. The BLSE dean will then solicit a report from the faculty member that explains the grading policies in the course and the reason for the given grade. After reviewing these materials, the BLSE dean  will make a final determination. If the dean recommends a grade change, the student’s official transcript will be updated within 10 days. Students have a right to appeal the decision within 30 days to the VP of Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools.

Student Evaluations

In addition to assigning grades, Bread Loaf faculty write detailed narrative appraisals of each student’s work in the course and indicate whether the student is prepared for advanced independent study. This evaluation becomes part of the student’s permanent record and explains the significance of the grade. We use these evaluations in advising students and monitoring their progress, preparing letters of recommendation (which quote the evaluations verbatim), making scholarship award determinations, and carrying out other kinds of academic assessments.

  • Faculty should assess the student’s achievements on each of the major assignments as well as the student’s progress across the course, assessing in some detail the student’s abilities as writers, readers, discussants, and, where applicable, teachers and performers. Descriptions of course design are unnecessary; verbatim quotations of comments on student papers are less helpful than reflective overviews of the strengths and weaknesses of the writing and thinking. The correlation between the grade and the narrative evaluation should be clear.
  • Faculty should also indicate in the evaluations whether the student is ready to pursue independent work of the sort demanded by an IRP or at the Oxford campus, where one unit of each course consists of independent study.
  • Evaluations are confidential, except in cases in which students have not waived their rights to view the letter. If a student declines to waive his or her rights to see faculty comments, we will mark “Not Confidential” on the grade roster beside that student’s name. Faculty may follow their own instincts in what to write under these circumstances, though we do expect faculty to offer some evaluation, as they do in responding directly to student work (see Student Records and Confidentiality).
  • Student evaluations are due, without exception, at the end of the summer session and should be submitted electronically, following the template of the Student Evaluation Form, to the campus coordinator. Faculty should make sure that the grade on the evaluation form matches the grade submitted online.
  • Completing student evaluations is part of each faculty member’s contractual obligation: faculty who do not complete these evaluations on time may not be reappointed for a subsequent summer.

Incomplete Work, Withdrawals, and Academic Probation


Students are expected to complete all required course work by the last day of class (or, in the case of students who have received permission to leave early, before they leave campus for the summer). Students who have not turned in all required work by that deadline must request approval for an Incomplete or will receive an F in the course. Faculty who anticipate that a student will be unable to finish the course work by the end of the session should consult with the dean (in person or by email) and must have approval from the dean before assigning an INC on the grading roster.

Students may request approval for an incomplete in cases when a family, medical, or personal emergency prohibits the completion of the course work. In order to be approved for an incomplete, before leaving campus they must:

  • Receive preliminary approval from the Bread Loaf dean or associate director.
  • Consult with their professors to determine what, and by what date (usually within 30 days of the end of the session), work needs to be completed.
  • Submit a Request for Incomplete Grade form to the Bread Loaf office for final approval by the dean ; the form details what work needs to be done, and both the student and the faculty member must sign this form.

Students will submit finished course work to the main Bread Loaf office, and the office will forward the work to the faculty for evaluation. In cases where the work is not submitted by the established deadline, the INC will be changed to an F. Faculty will need to complete a Failure Grade Report for any student receiving an F; the Bread Loaf office will make sure the form gets to and from affected faculty.

Course Withdrawals

Students may request to withdraw from a course for academic, medical, emergency, or other reasons, at any point. Dropping and adding a course during the drop/add period does not constitute “withdrawal”: withdrawal applies only when students are withdrawing from a course without taking another in its place.

  • To withdraw from a course, students must notify the Bread Loaf dean or on-site director (in person if possible).
  • If the student withdraws from a course by the end of the drop/add period (see Drop/Add), no courses or grades will appear on the student’s transcript.
  • If the student withdraws from a course after the drop/add period, courses will be listed on the transcript and assigned a grade of either WD pass or WD fail, depending on the status of his or her work at the time of the withdrawal.
  • If a student withdraws from a course for medical reasons or family emergencies, the Bread Loaf dean will determine whether courses or WD grades will be listed on the transcript.

Middlebury reserves the right to require a student to withdraw from the program (see Emergency Withdrawal, Suspension, or Dismissal).

Academic Probation

Students who have earned one B- or lower in a Bread Loaf course will automatically be placed on academic probation. During the probationary period, all course and campus choices will need to be preapproved by the dean. Ordinarily, students on probation will not be enrolled at the Oxford campus and will not be eligible to pursue an IRP or take a course overload. The dean will review the student’s progress at the end of the probationary summer and determine whether the student’s work has improved sufficiently to warrant ending the probationary period. Students found to have plagiarized will be placed on permanent probation (see Plagiarism).

Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation for all purposes except for applications to other graduate programs, are prepared by, and requested from, the associate director. The letters incorporate verbatim a selection of the student evaluations written by the faculty, and they are governed by the same confidentiality policies that govern the evaluations. Students or alumni who are applying to graduate schools are advised to request recommendations directly from faculty.

Student Records and Confidentiality

In accordance with the Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA), students and former students of Middlebury College have the right to inspect all educational records placed in their files after January 1975. Information on this policy is available at:

All first-year students are required to sign a Confidentiality Agreement form when they register at the beginning of their first Bread Loaf session. The form gives students the option of waiving or not waiving their rights to review materials placed in their Bread Loaf files, including student evaluations written by Bread Loaf faculty and letters of recommendation written by Bread Loaf administrators.

The form is placed in each student’s file, and the option chosen will remain in effect until the student notifies the dean in writing that he or she wants to change it. If a student has waived his or her rights and then rescinds the waiver, any letters or evaluations written while the waiver was in effect will not be available for inspection or review by the student.

We advise that evaluations and letters of recommendation will carry more credence when they are written under terms of confidentiality.

Cocurricular Support

Ken Macrorie Writing Centers

Each of Bread Loaf’s campuses is home to a writing center, established in honor of writing specialist and former Bread Loaf faculty member Ken Macrorie. Staffed by peer readers and supervised by a faculty coordinator, the centers offer students support throughout the session on critical essays as well as on creative or new media projects. Students interested in serving as peer readers are required to complete training, offered at each of the U.S. campuses, in writing center pedagogy and practice.

Bread Loaf Teacher Network

Bread Loaf Teacher Network
The Bread Loaf Teacher Network (BLTN) is one of the finest professional development networks in the country. Grounded on digital exchanges between students and teachers from different geographic and cultural locations, its goal is to create year-round collaborations that are built on Bread Loaf course work, that engage students and teachers in culturally responsive and transformative literacy, and that have the collective power to change educational thinking and practice within and between classrooms, schools, and states. BLTN meetings occur weekly at each of the Bread Loaf campuses, and all Bread Loaf students are invited to join (just attend a meeting). Information on the network, along with copies of the Bread Loaf Teacher Network Journal are available on the BLTN site.

Technology and Research Resources

Bread Loaf offers a number of electronic research resources as well as computer labs and support staff at every campus.

Computer Support and Contacts

Middlebury Help Desk

Middlebury Help Desk Hours


Bread Loaf has its own communications network, BreadWeb, which is both an app and a website available to all enrolled students, faculty, and staff. BreadWeb allows students to find one another and key events at a click, and to participate in public and private groups within and across campuses. We urge all students to use BreadWeb during the summer. 

  • All Bread Loaf students are provided with a BreadWeb account (free of charge). Our technology staff will help students access and learn the system. Prior to the start of the summer, all faculty and enrolled students will receive instructions for login and for common tasks, including filling out a profile to help personalize our community.
  • Returning faculty will use the same BreadWeb login credentials from the previous year.
  • Bread Loaf staff member Tom McKenna <> is available to give online support to BreadWeb users. 

Course Hub

Course Hub is Middlebury’s gateway to course content for students and faculty. It is integrated with the Canvas learning management system. Information pertinent to Bread Loaf courses such as course syllabi, web sites, course blogs, electronic reserves, Google docs, or streaming audio/video may be posted on the Course Hub. 

To log into the Course Hub, use your Middlebury username and password. You will see links to your registered courses. Syllabi for each course is available on the course pages at the start of the summer session. Faculty may also choose to post electronic reserves or other course materials on the site.

Information Security

Middlebury’s Information Security website provides information and resources to help you learn how to be more secure, online and offline.

Library Services and Contacts

Library Services

During the summer session Bread Loaf students at all campuses have access not only to their campus libraries but also to the full resources and services of the Middlebury College Library, with over one million holdings, in print, online, and recorded form. These resources include:

  • Middlebury’s online catalog (MIDCAT)
  • Electronic delivery of articles in Middlebury’s collection and beyond using Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad)
  • BLSE Library Research Guide, compiled specifically for Bread Loaf students, with links to a full range of online references and databases available to Bread Loaf students (JSTOR, Project MUSE, Early English Books Online), bibliographies, dictionaries (OED), citation and style guides, newspapers, and other resources particularly useful for research in the humanities.

These resources are available through the Middlebury Library webpages; in some cases users will need to log on, and they will be prompted to enter their Middlebury username and password.

Currently enrolled students will also have access to these online services throughout the year. (For the purpose of library access, a currently enrolled student is one who attended Bread Loaf the previous summer and is enrolled for the coming summer. Students who re-enroll after January or who did not attend Bread Loaf the previous summer will not have access to these library services until the start of the summer session for which they are enrolled.)

Library Contacts

Kellam Ayres, BLSE Liaison and Reserves Coordinator
(802) 443-5065,

Reference Desk
(802) 443-5496,

Circulation Desk
(802) 443-5494,

Technology Help Desk
(802) 443-2200,

Useful Links

Library Quick Search (MIDCAT, Middlebury’s online catalog)

BLSE Library and Technology Webpage

BLSE Library Research Guide (descriptions of and links to bibliographies, catalogs, journals, databases, and other resources useful for research in the humanities)

Libraries and Collections (links to all Middlebury’ libraries and collections)

Resources Available from Off-campus (including Interlibrary Loan)

Middlebury College Handbook, Library and Information Services (Middlebury policies guiding use of LIS)

Other Library and Information Services Departments

Conduct and Policies

All faculty and staff are responsible for knowing and understanding all of Middlebury and Bread Loaf policies, as articulated in this and in the Middlebury College Handbook (

Community Standards

Bread Loaf shares the commitment of the larger Middlebury College community to the following goals:

  • cultivating respect and responsibility for self, others, and our shared environment
  • encouraging personal and intellectual courage and growth
  • manifesting integrity and honesty in all decisions and actions
  • promoting healthy, safe, and balanced lifestyles
  • fostering a diverse and inclusive community committed to civility, open-mindedness, collaboration, and cooperation

Therefore, a balance of individual community health and growth guides Bread Loaf’s approach to all endeavors, and to the policies that support those endeavors.

Student Life Policy Overview

The above Community Standards guide Middlebury’s approach to policy, and to addressing policy violations. Depending on their nature and severity, alleged Middlebury policy violations may be adjudicated and discipline may be assigned by the Bread Loaf dean or designee. The disciplinary authority considers the totality of a student’s history, the impact on community, and the specific circumstances of the event when determining appropriate responses to policy violations. Consistent with the cultivation of an awareness of responsibility and accountability, students found in violation of Middlebury policies and/or participating in prohibited acts will be held responsible, will be subject to discipline, and/or will be charged for fines and associated costs (such as materials or labor costs for repairs; cost of impoundment; restitution, etc.) as appropriate. As with all Middlebury fees, students with unpaid charges may be restricted from registering for classes until their accounts are in order.

Disciplinary outcomes issued in Middlebury’s Bread Loaf program may be referred to any other Middlebury program in which the student is or will be enrolled (see “Scope of Oversight,” below). The student’s ongoing or future enrollment in any other Middlebury program will be determined in accordance with that program’s policies and processes. Admission to any Middlebury program may be denied or withdrawn based on the student’s disciplinary history at any other Middlebury or non-Middlebury program.

Handbook policies are set forth in writing in order to give students general notice of our Community Standards, and of resulting prohibited conduct. The Handbook and its policies are intended to be read broadly and are not designed to define misconduct in exhaustive terms. Attempts to commit acts prohibited in this Handbook may also lead to disciplinary action and sanctions.

Emergency Withdrawal, Suspension, or Dismissal

Middlebury recognizes its obligation to promote the welfare of its community as a whole and to take appropriate action when that welfare is jeopardized. To that end, Middlebury reserves the right, notwithstanding and apart from the disciplinary procedures described in this handbook„ on an emergency basis, to suspend, expel, or require to withdraw any student whose presence at any of its Bread Loaf School of English programs is determined by Middlebury authorities (e.g., the Bread Loaf dean or designee, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools) to pose a danger to the Middlebury and/or Bread Loaf community or its members or to be unduly disruptive of the living, working, and/or learning environment of others, or who appears to be unwilling or incapable of effectively and/or safely participating in Bread Loaf’s academic or other programs or residential life. In cases of emergency suspension or required withdrawal, the conditions and procedures for readmission, if applicable, will be determined and communicated in writing to the student at the time of the student’s departure or shortly thereafter (see Pending Discipline below and Withdrawals).

Scope of Oversight

Students will be held accountable for policy violations that take place between the first and last day of each Bread Loaf session or Middlebury’s confirmation of their resignation or expulsion. Conduct that takes place on or near Middlebury premises or property; occurs at or in connection with a Middlebury-related event, or occurs off-campus but may represent a threat to the safety of the Middlebury community or its members, the pursuit of its objectives, and/or the educational environment of others, may be subject to the disciplinary process outlined below (see Disciplinary Action).

In cases where a student is found responsible for a policy violation while participating in any Bread Loaf program, the finding of responsibility may also be referred to the appropriate authority overseeing any additional Middlebury or non-Middlebury program in which the student is or will be enrolled for other action as deemed appropriate. This may include but is not limited to: further investigation; additional adjudication under existing policies (using only information gathered in the first disciplinary process, or using subsequently gathered information, or both, as deemed appropriate by the overseeing authority); disciplinary action; or other remedies or processes deemed appropriate by the authority overseeing the additional Middlebury or non-Middlebury program.

Pending Discipline

A student will not be permitted to graduate from or otherwise deemed to have officially completed a Bread Loaf program in which he or she is enrolled while a disciplinary matter is pending; the student’s graduation or certification will be held in abeyance until the matter is resolved. If a respondent withdraws with a disciplinary matter, sanction, or appeal pending, the withdrawal will be considered a resignation from Middlebury, and the student will have given up the opportunity to return to any Middlebury program. The student’s official status at Middlebury will reflect the point in the process at which they withdrew, and the nature of the findings and sanction, as appropriate. Examples include but are not limited to Withdrawal with a Disciplinary Matter Pending, Withdrawal with a Disciplinary Sanction Pending, and Withdrawal with a Disciplinary Appeal Pending.

In extraordinary circumstances, the appropriate supervisory authority (e.g., Bread Loaf dean or designee or Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools) may, after appropriate consultation, a review of the case, and consideration of Middlebury’s best interests, grant permission for a respondent to withdraw from Middlebury when a disciplinary matter is pending. If the student is readmitted to Middlebury, the disciplinary matter must be resolved either before the student’s return, or immediately upon the student’s return (as determined by Middlebury). Middlebury may also notify all institutions or programs in which the student is (or will be) enrolled of any pending or unresolved disciplinary matters pertaining to that student.


Several handbook policies include deadlines. Unless otherwise noted, “days” indicates calendar days, regardless of whether the majority of Middlebury’s administrative offices are open. “Business days” indicates days on which the majority of Middlebury’s administrative offices are open, and generally connotes Mondays through Fridays. In computing any period of time referenced in this handbook, the day of the act or event (e.g., notification of hearing, issuance of an outcome letter, etc.) from which the designated time period begins to run shall not be included. The last day of the period so computed shall be included if it is a business day; when not a business day, the period will conclude at the end of the next business day.

Academic Freedom

Middlebury is a community of learners and as such recognizes and affirms that free intellectual inquiry, debate, and constructive dialogue are vital to Middlebury’s academic mission and must be protected even when the views expressed are unpopular or controversial. Middlebury’s handbook policies are meant neither to proscribe nor to inhibit discussions, in or out of the classroom, of complex, controversial, or sensitive matters, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, race, color, ethnicity, religion, marital status, place of birth, ancestry, national origin, age, or disability, when in the judgment of a reasonable person they arise appropriately and are conducted with respect for the dignity of others. Middlebury also recognizes that verbal conduct can be used specifically to intimidate or coerce and to inhibit genuine discourse, free inquiry, and learning. Such abuses, including but not limited to conduct that violates Middlebury’s General Conduct policies, Anti-Harassment/Discrimination policy, and other policies are unacceptable. The “reasonable person standard” is to be used in judging whether a policy violation has occurred.

General Conduct Standards

All students, as well as faculty, staff, and others who participate in Bread Loaf programs and activities are subject to Middlebury’s General Conduct Standards, Respectful Behavior, and Honesty and Cooperation in Middlebury Matters policies.
(updated May 2017)

Anti-Harassment/Discrimination Policy

Policy Against Sexual Misconduct, Domestic and Dating Violence and Misconduct, and Stalking

Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy

Middlebury is committed to promoting individual and community health, safety, and responsibility. We expect all students and employees to observe local, state, and federal laws governing the possession, use, and furnishing of alcoholic beverages and controlled substances, also referred to as illegal drugs, and failure to do so is prohibited. We have also committed to ensuring that, in accordance with the Drug-Free Schools and Community Act of 1989 and the Drug-Free Schools and Campuses Regulations, our policies concerning alcohol and drugs contain clear statements about: (1) the standards of conduct that clearly prohibit the unlawful possession, use, or distribution of illegal drugs and alcohol by students and employees; (2) that Middlebury will impose disciplinary sanctions on students and employees who violate these policies (consistent with local, state, and federal law); (3) the applicable legal sanctions under local, state, or federal law for the unlawful possession or distribution of illegal drugs and alcohol; and (4) health risks and information regarding drug or alcohol counseling, treatment or rehabilitation, or reentry programs that are available to students and employees. When alcohol violations occur, disciplinary sanctions will be imposed in accordance with this policy. Serious incidents that put a student or others at risk of harm, as well as repeated offenses, may require a more vigorous response, including referral to counseling or a treatment facility, a leave of absence, and/or disciplinary outcomes as appropriate.

Therefore, Middlebury will:

  • Inform students and employees of federal, state, and local laws, and Middlebury policies, to which they are accountable, and hold them accountable to those policies under Middlebury’s governance;
  • Encourage an environment of enriching extracurricular and social opportunities that includes substance-free events and appropriate venues for students of legal age who choose to drink;
  • Educate members of the community through academic and student life programs and policies about the role of alcohol and drugs in our society, safe and responsible decisions around alcohol consumption, and the negative individual and community consequences of abuse; and
  • Where appropriate, provide educational and health services to students who choose to use alcohol or drugs, who experience negative consequences, or who violate the commitment to individual and community safety.

Middlebury Policies and Local, State, and Federal Law

All students, faculty, staff, and visitors are subject to local, state, and federal laws, as well as Middlebury drug and alcohol policy rules and regulations, while on Middlebury-owned or -leased properties or involved with off-campus activities sponsored by Middlebury or a registered Middlebury organization. Middlebury does not protect students or employees from prosecution for drug or alcohol offenses under local, state, or federal laws, and does not interfere with legitimate law enforcement activities. Law enforcement officers may have a legal right to search individuals, and with consent or proper documentation may search property—including Middlebury residence hall rooms—without prior notice. Middlebury also reserves the right to furnish the police with information regarding alleged illegal activities.

In order to preserve the safety of our residents, the state of Vermont and Middlebury both adhere to policies that limit disciplinary consequences under certain circumstances when appropriate care is sought for individuals in drug- or alcohol-related distress. Please see the Good Samaritan Policy below for more information. Additionally, if student health and safety concerns resulting from a student’s use of alcohol and/or drugs arise, parents or guardians may be notified. See Health and Community Responsibility below for more information.


The following actions are prohibited:

a. Underage drinking. Only persons of legal age (21 or older in the United States, and as defined by the laws of a foreign host country) may possess or consume alcoholic beverages. Legal proof of age, such as a valid driver’s license, state-issued liquor identification card, or passport may be required.

b. Purchasing, serving, or furnishing alcohol for/to a minor.

c. Selling, manufacturing, or distributing alcohol illegally.

d. Possession, production, or provision of false ID.

e. Operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. Driving on or off campus under the influence of drugs or alcohol is prohibited. Fines are assessed, and driving privileges on campus will be suspended. Students who are charged by law enforcement officers with Driving Under the Influence (DUI) and are awaiting the court outcome shall have their campus driving privileges suspended pending the court disposition. In those incidents where the DUI involves an accident with injuries to others, or other exceptional factors, immediate disciplinary action may take place.

f. Bringing alcohol to a Middlebury or Bread Loaf event, or leaving a Middlebury or Bread Loaf event with alcoholic beverages provided at the event. Only alcohol served at a Middlebury/Bread Loaf sponsored event is permitted at those events.

g. Possessing alcoholic beverages in unauthorized spaces. Open containers of alcohol are prohibited in public spaces, or outside on the campus grounds, unless the area has been designated for a registered or catered event. For purposes of this policy, residential hallways are normally considered private spaces. Students of legal age may transport open alcohol containers for personal use within residence halls, but the use of hallways for parties is prohibited.

h. Possession of kegs or common containers. Possession of kegs or common containers (e.g., punch bowls) is prohibited. Unauthorized kegs or common containers will be confiscated along with taps, and confiscated kegs and taps will be returned to the vendor.

i. Engaging in drinking games and other behaviors designed for the purpose of becoming intoxicated through the abusive use of alcohol (e.g., funnels, keg stands, “around-the-world” parties, and other alcohol consumption based on speed and/or volume, etc.).

j. Administering alcohol to individuals against their will and/or without their knowledge.

k. Repeated unsafe intoxication. Multiple instances involving assignment to a sober friend, and single or multiple instances involving alcohol/drug-related transport to the hospital and/or detoxification facilities may also result in disciplinary action, consistent with the Good Samaritan policy (below).


The following actions are prohibited:

a. Using or possessing illegal drugs or controlled substances, including but not limited to prescription medication without a properly issued prescription.

b. Misuse of legal substances to cause impairment/hallucination.

c. Possession of drug paraphernalia that has been used.

d. Growing, manufacturing, distributing, or selling illegal drugs or controlled substances, including prescription drugs, with or without the intent to distribute.

e. Administering drugs to individuals against their will and/or without their knowledge.

Disciplinary Sanctions: Students

Disciplinary sanctions for students who violate this policy will be imposed in accordance with the “Disciplinary Action” section of the Handbook. Disciplinary sanctions may include warnings, reprimands, fines or restitution, probationary status, official discipline, suspension, expulsion and/or referral for prosecution (depending on the severity of the conduct). While discipline is cumulative at Middlebury, which may mean the assignment of greater sanctions for repeated or accumulated violations, it is not progressive. That is, depending on the severity of the violation, a student may receive any sanction, even for a first offense.

Good Samaritan Policy

Middlebury’s Good Samaritan Policy is intended to encourage students to seek swift medical assistance for themselves and others without fear of penalty. Our primary concern is the health and safety of our students. We urge students not only to take care of their own well-being, but to behave in an equally responsible way with their peers.

There may be times when safety concerns arise from a student’s excessive drinking or drug use, and in these situations, students should not hesitate to seek help from the dean or assistant director, medical or counseling professionals, and/or local or state police out of fear of disciplinary action. Under this Good Samaritan Policy, neither the student in distress nor the student seeking assistance will ordinarily be subject to disciplinary action for the possession, provision, or consumption of drugs or alcohol.

This policy refers to isolated incidents only, and does not excuse or protect those who flagrantly or repeatedly violate the Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy, nor does it preclude disciplinary action arising from violations of other Middlebury policies. However, in cases involving additional policy violations, Middlebury will consider the positive impact of reporting an incident as well as the health and safety needs of the involved student(s) when determining the appropriate course of action.

This policy cannot protect students from action by law enforcement personnel, but it is consistent with a law enacted by Vermont in June 2013 that provides limited immunity from prosecution to a witness or victim of a drug or alcohol overdose who seeks medical assistance to save the life of an overdose victim. For more information about this act, please see Drugs and Alcohol: Policies, Laws, and Resources.

Health and Community Responsibility

Middlebury believes that alcohol and other drug-related problems affect our entire community and that each of us has a responsibility to help safeguard the community health by respecting policy and intervening in situations of abuse. Any member of the Middlebury community having knowledge of an individual on campus who is abusing alcohol or in possession of or using illegal drugs, or misusing legal substances to cause impairment/hallucination, is urged to encourage the individual to seek counseling and/or medical assistance. All members of the community are also expected to help protect the community health by informing appropriate Middlebury staff members of instances of alcohol and/or drug misuse, distribution, and/or sales.

Involvement with or dependency upon drugs or excessive or illegal use of alcohol is viewed by Middlebury as a health concern as well as a disciplinary matter. Any time a supervisory authority has reasonable concerns that a student’s health is being compromised by alcohol or other drug use (even in cases where no concrete evidence or direct witness is involved), an educational and/or preventative response, such as a group class, online course, BASICs course, substance use assessment, or other appropriate course of action may be required.

Laws and Resources

For information specific to state and federal laws governing the use, possession, and distribution of drugs and alcohol, as well as additional counseling and treatment resources and information related to health risks associated with the use of illegal drugs and the abuse of alcohol, see Middlebury’s Annual Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act Notice.

Other Policies

Minors on Campus Policy

Policy Against Hazing

No Smoking Policy

Weapons Policy

Residential Responsibilities and Expectations (including fire safety, furniture and appliances, entry)

Demonstrations and Protests

Parking Policy

Pet Policy

Information Technology Policies

Emergency Preparedness

Threat Assessment and Response Policy

Community Bias Response Team Policy

Appropriate Use of Middlebury Resources and Assets

Disciplinary Action

Except in cases of emergency withdrawal, suspension or dismissal (see below), this section describes the disciplinary process that is normally followed when violations of Middlebury policies are alleged. Where other Middlebury policies specify separate processes, those processes will apply. See, e.g., the Anti-Harassment/Discrimination Policy; the Policy Against Sexual Misconduct, Domestic and Dating Violence and Misconduct, and Stalking; and the Hazing Policy. Moreover, where applicable laws where the program takes place mandate different procedures or policies, those procedures or policies will apply.

Since Middlebury lacks full judicial authority, such as the power to subpoena or place witnesses under oath, a student’s rights cannot be coextensive with or identical to the rights afforded someone accused in a civil or criminal legal proceeding. However, the procedures outlined below and in the Policy Against Sexual Misconduct, Domestic and Dating Violence and Misconduct, and Stalking, Anti-Harassment/Discrimination Policy and Hazing Policy are designed to provide fundamental fairness and to protect students from arbitrary or capricious disciplinary action. All judicial affairs officers, human relations officers, directors, and other Middlebury disciplinary authorities shall conduct their proceedings in the spirit of these principles. If exceptional circumstances dictate variation from these procedures, the variation will not invalidate a decision unless it prevented fundamental fairness.

Students found to have violated Middlebury policy may be subject to the full range of disciplinary actions, as applicable, up to and including expulsion from any Bread Loaf program or other Middlebury program.

Alleged policy violations should be reported to the Bread Loaf dean or designee (associate director or on-site director). The dean or designee (hereinafter referred to as “the dean”) is ordinarily responsible for disciplinary action.

In the event that a complaint or report of an alleged policy violation is made against a Bread Loaf student, the accused student will be given notice of the alleged violation and an opportunity to respond to the allegations prior to any determination or disciplinary action. The notice may be given orally or in writing. The “opportunity to respond” means that the student will be given an opportunity to meet and/or communicate with the dean.

The dean will then make a determination, based on a preponderance of the evidence, as to whether the student violated the policy at issue. Formal rules of evidence do not apply in Middlebury conduct proceedings.

If a student is found responsible for a policy violation, the dean shall determine what disciplinary or other action should be taken, if any. If the dean determines that the circumstances do not warrant immediate expulsion from the program, the dean may take other actions, including the issuance of warnings, reprimands, probationary status, official discipline, or suspension from the program. The dean may also assign non-disciplinary action as appropriate, including the issuance of No Contact Orders, room changes, class changes, or other actions as needed. These sanctions are more specifically described in the “Sanctions Defined” section, below. Disciplinary action may be accompanied by notification to any other institution in which the student is, or will be, enrolled. For more information, see “Scope of Oversight.”

In the event that the student receives official discipline, or is suspended or expelled, the student may appeal the dean’s decision to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools (or designee) within three (3) business days of issuance of the dean’s determination. The appeal must be in writing (email or hard copy).

Appeals may be granted on the basis of one or more of the following grounds:

  • Discovery of significant new factual material not available to the dean that could have affected the original result; however, prior omission of factual information that the student knew or should reasonably have known about is not a ground for an appeal
  • Procedural error where the error prevented fundamental fairness
  • Extreme mitigating circumstances

The student must submit evidence and/or arguments they believe support any of the three grounds for appeal listed above, and their explanation of the evidence or arguments. The vice president may deny the appeal, or if one or more of the appeal grounds have been met, may:

  • return the case to the dean for reconsideration; or
  • appoint an alternate disciplinary authority, as appropriate, to review the case.

Absent extenuating circumstances, the vice president will notify the student of the appeal decision within five business days of the appeal receipt deadline. This deadline may be extended if warranted by the circumstances, in which case the student will be notified at the time the extension is determined.

The decision made by the vice president to grant or deny the appeal is final. Should an appeal be granted, the subsequent determination and/or sanction is/are final.

Sanctions Defined

a. Fines or restitution: Fines or restitution are commensurate with the nature of the offense. The monetary cost of the harm done may be taken into account in assessment of a fine or an order of restitution.

b. Warnings: A verbal or written warning may be issued when a student has violated Middlebury policy. A warning is intended to educate the student about community standards, Middlebury policies and/or state laws, and the need to adhere to them. A warning constitutes informal discipline and is not part of the student’s permanent record. Students who receive a warning can answer negatively if they are asked if they have been subject to official discipline. A warning remains in a student’s file until graduation, when it is removed. Warnings are taken into account in determining future disciplinary outcomes and may serve to make further violations of Middlebury policies more serious.

c. Reprimands: A letter of reprimand may be issued when a student demonstrates an inability or unwillingness to abide by community standards by repeatedly violating Middlebury policy. A letter of reprimand may also be issued when a student has committed a violation of Middlebury policy that has had or may have had a negative impact on an individual or on the community, or has undermined Middlebury’s community standards. A reprimand registers strongly Middlebury’s concern regarding the student’s actions and its firm expectations for immediate improved behavior.

A letter of reprimand constitutes informal discipline and is not part of the student’s permanent record. Students who receive reprimands can answer negatively if they are asked if they have been subject to official discipline. A letter of reprimand remains in a student’s file until graduation, when it is removed. Reprimands are taken into account in determining future disciplinary penalties and may serve to make further violations of Middlebury policies more serious.

d. Probationary Status: Students may be placed on probationary status when the number or nature of their Middlebury policy violation(s) is sufficiently concerning that an additional policy violation will most likely result in official discipline (please see below). Probationary status provides students with an opportunity to avoid this outcome. They may do so by demonstrating improved conduct, generally reflected in their sustained ability to respect community standards and adhere to Middlebury policies.

If students commit new policy violations while on probation, an appropriate course of action will be determined. Considerations may include the gravity and impact of the new infraction; the student’s response during and following the new infraction; and the student’s progress during the probationary period.

Probationary status is informal College discipline and is not part of the student’s permanent record. Students who are placed on probationary status can answer negatively if they are asked if they have been subject to official discipline. Although probationary status concludes after a designated period of time, a probationary status letter remains in a student’s file until graduation, when it is removed. It is important to note that discipline is cumulative at Middlebury, and further infractions following the successful conclusion of the probationary period may still result in more severe outcomes.

e. Official Discipline: Students may receive a letter of official discipline when their actions have demonstrated disregard for Middlebury’s community standards and policies such that an additional infraction of Middlebury policy will most likely result in suspension from Middlebury. Official discipline is intended to encourage immediate improved behavior, and acceptance of responsibility and growth by establishing this incident on the student’s permanent record.

Official discipline is a permanent part of the student’s file. Students who receive official discipline must answer affirmatively if they are asked whether they have been subject to discipline at Middlebury.

f. Suspension: Suspension is issued when a student commits a serious policy violation, or repeatedly violates Middlebury policy, thereby demonstrating an inability or unwillingness to behave in a manner consistent with Middlebury’s community standards. The behavior is sufficiently egregious that the student is required to leave the Middlebury community for a period of time. It is intended to encourage acceptance of responsibility and growth by establishing this incident on the student’s permanent record; to provide the student with an opportunity to consider and address the problematic behavior; and to develop strategies to ensure that the student’s eventual return to Middlebury will be successful for the student and for the community.

Suspension may be imposed for any length of time. In determining the length of suspension, the dean will consider the student’s prior conduct history; the gravity of the violation and its impact on the community; and the need for sufficient time for the student to demonstrate that the concerning behavior has been satisfactorily addressed.

Students who are suspended for four weeks or longer must apply to the dean for readmission to the Bread Loaf program and must demonstrate readiness to return to Middlebury. Readiness to return is determined by a student’s adherence to the terms of the sanction and the deadlines of the readmission process; by the completion of any additional conditions that may have been established at the time of the student’s departure; and by the provision of satisfactory evidence that the problematic behavior will not recur. If a student is unable to demonstrate readiness to return at the stated conclusion of the period of suspension, the dean may deny readmission until it is satisfied that the conditions that led to the student’s departure have been appropriately addressed.

Suspension is official discipline and is a permanent part of the student’s file. Students who are suspended must answer affirmatively if they are asked whether they have been disciplined at Middlebury. Students who are suspended must leave campus; are restricted from all Middlebury owned or rented properties; and are prohibited from participating in all Middlebury activities or programs, from employment at Middlebury, and from using Middlebury facilities during the stated period of the suspension. When suspension prohibits students from completing a semester they have already begun, the comprehensive fee for that semester is not refunded. At the point of suspension, the dean shall determine the student’s grade designation. For international students, suspension may affect immigration status; related questions may be directed to the Office of International Student and Scholar Services.

g. Expulsion: For particularly serious offenses, students may be permanently expelled from Middlebury. In cases of expulsion from Middlebury, no refund of the comprehensive fee is made. At the point of expulsion, the dean shall determine the student’s grade designation. Expulsion is official discipline and is a permanent part of the student’s file. Students who are expelled must answer affirmatively if they are asked whether they have been disciplined at Middlebury.

A sanction of suspension or expulsion is ordinarily stayed pending the outcome of any appeal authorized by this policy. However, if the judicial authority which imposed this sanction makes a finding that imminent danger to one or more members of the Middlebury community may exist, suspension or expulsion will take effect immediately regardless of the pendency of an appeal.


Non-Medical Withdrawal

Students who withdraw from the Bread Loaf program before the end of the drop/add period because of non-medical emergencies will not have any courses or grades appear on their transcripts. Students who withdraw after the drop/add period will receive grades of “WD” (pass or fail) on their transcripts.

Students who wish to withdraw for any reason must notify the Bread Loaf dean in writing. At the point of withdrawal, the dean shall determine the student’s grade designation and eligibility for refund.

Students who withdraw voluntarily from the program will forfeit their enrollment deposits, but may, with the approval of the dean, receive refunds for any additional amounts paid, in accordance with Bread Loaf’s Billing and Refunds policy.

Medical Withdrawal

i). Student Requests for Medical Withdrawal
Voluntary medical withdrawals are appropriate when a student’s medical, psychological, or substance-related condition prevents the student from effectively and/or safely participating in Bread Loaf’s academic programs and/or the residential life programs. Students who wish to withdraw from the Bread Loaf program for medical reasons must notify the Bread Loaf dean . At the point of withdrawal, the dean shall determine the student’s grade designation and eligibility for refund.

ii). Medical Withdrawal Initiated by Middlebury
Middlebury may require withdrawal of a student for medical reasons when:

(a) There is a reasonable basis to believe, based on a case-by-case, objective assessment of the student’s behavior and other relevant information, that the student’s medical, psychological, or substance-related condition prevents them from safely and/or effectively participating in Bread Loaf’s academic or residential life programs, such that the student is not otherwise qualified to attend Middlebury; or

(b) There is a reasonable basis to believe, based on a case-by-case, objective assessment of the student’s behavior and other relevant information, that as a result of the student’s medical, psychological, or substance-related condition, the student has threatened, or poses a significant risk of threatening, the health or safety of others; or causes or threatens to cause property damage; or engages in behavior that is unduly disruptive of others in the Middlebury community. (Behavior that is “unduly disruptive” includes but is not limited to conduct that interferes with, or poses a significant risk of interference with, the emotional or physical well-being of others and/or the academic, extracurricular, or social activities of others.)

Prior to the withdrawal, the student may be required to sign a release authorizing disclosure of the student’s medical or other information by and between the student’s physician(s), psychologist(s), or licensed counselor(s), or others who are asked to provide information regarding the student and the Bread Loaf dean or designee, the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Schools (“VPAA/DOS”) and a designated staff member of the Parton Center for Health and Wellness (“Parton”). A medical evaluation by a competent specialist may also be required. The outcome of the medical evaluation will be shared with a designated staff member of Parton, the Bread Loaf dean or designee and VPAA/DOS.

Student(s) will be given notice and an opportunity to speak with the Bread Loaf dean prior to or within five business days of the withdrawal. The dean may also consult with others as appropriate (e.g., medical professionals, members of Middlebury’s Threat Assessment and Management Team [“TAM”], other Middlebury officials, law enforcement, and/or the student’s family members).

The Bread Loaf dean may also consider other information such as the recommendation, if any, made by the TAM; or whether there are reasonable accommodations that would effectively mitigate the risk of harm to others or property and would allow the student to safely and effectively participate in Bread Loaf’s academic and/or residential life programs, as applicable.

The student will be notified of the withdrawal decision in writing. The decision may be appealed, following the procedures set forth in Section 3, below.

Students withdrawn under this section may also be subject to the normal disciplinary processes if their conduct has violated Middlebury policy. If disciplinary action is appropriate, the matter must be resolved either before or immediately upon the student’s return (if applicable).

At the point of withdrawal, the dean shall determine the student’s grade designation and eligibility for refund.


An appeal under Section 2 (ii), above, may be made in writing to the VPAA/DOS or designee within five business days of receipt of the decision. The appeal must include the grounds for the appeal and an outline of any supporting evidence. Appeals transmitted via email will be considered to be “in writing.” Absent extenuating circumstances, the VPAA/DOS will notify the student of the appeal decision within ten business days of receipt of the appeal.

Request for Readmission

Medical Withdrawal
Students who are withdrawn from Bread Loaf for medical reasons and who wish to be readmitted must submit a written request for readmission to the dean and a Medical Return Form to Parton. The Medical Return Form (available from Parton) usually must include the following:

(1) a recommendation for return to Middlebury and supporting documentation from the student’s treating physician(s), psychiatrist(s) and/or licensed counselors (as applicable) that the student is able to participate safely and effectively in the academic, residential, and other components of Middlebury’s programs (with or without reasonable accommodations);

(2) information regarding the risk of medical instability in areas relevant to the student’s ability to participate safely and effectively in Middlebury’s academic and residential programs and the need, if any, for continuing treatment and follow-up care;

(3) the current status of all symptoms and conditions that led to the withdrawal;

(4) continued treatment recommendations relevant to the student’s ability to participate safely and effectively in Middlebury’s academic and residential programs; and

(5) authorization for disclosure by and between any person providing documentation in support of the request, a designated member of the Parton staff, and the Bread Loaf dean or designee and/or the VPAA/DOS. Students may also submit other information in support of their request. Middlebury may also require that the student submit to an independent medical evaluation performed by a health care provider selected by Middlebury (at Middlebury’s expense) and/or that the student provide additional information necessary to determine whether the student should be readmitted at that time.

In addition to the information required above, students who are withdrawn for the reasons set forth in Section 2 (ii) above, usually must submit to the Bread Loaf dean and/or the VPAA/DOS the following information in their request for readmission:

(1) a description of the student’s understanding of the problem that led to the involuntary withdrawal;

(2) sufficient evidence of the student’s attempts to resolve the issue(s) that led to the involuntary withdrawal;

(3) information about what steps the student will take to prevent the problem(s) from recurring; and

(4) if applicable, sufficient evidence to demonstrate that the threat or conduct of concern has been eliminated and that the student is ready to return to Middlebury and adhere to all Middlebury policies.

Decisions on readmission requests are made on a case-by-case basis, so Middlebury may require more, less or different information than that described above as deemed appropriate and necessary in a particular case.

The Bread Loaf dean and/or the VPAA/DOS will consider the student’s request for readmission after receiving the supporting information described generally above or requested specifically in a given case, as well as any other information that the student wishes to submit. In considering the request, the Bread Loaf dean and/or VPAA/DOS, in consultation with Parton staff or other Middlebury officials, will determine whether there is a sufficient basis to establish the following (as applicable):

(1) the medical condition that led to the student’s withdrawal has been adequately addressed and/or managed such that the student is otherwise qualified to safely and/or effectively participate in the academic and/or residential life of the BLSE program (with or without reasonable accommodation); and/or

(2) the student no longer poses a threat to the health or safety of others or to property, or poses a threat of undue disruption to members of the Middlebury community.

Notice to the Student’s Home Institution

Middlebury reserves the right to notify all institutions or programs in which the student is (or will be) enrolled of any medical or non-medical withdrawal of the student from the Bread Loaf School of English.

Middlebury College Accreditation

The Bread Loaf School of English, a graduate program of Middlebury College, is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

Middlebury College complies with applicable provisions of state and federal law that prohibit discrimination in employment or in admission or access to its educational or extracurricular programs, activities, facilities, on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, place of birth, Vietnam veteran status, or against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability. Because of varying circumstances and legal requirements, such provisions may not apply to programs offered by the College outside the United States. This is consistent with the College’s intent to comply with the requirements of application law. Individuals with questions about the policies governing such programs should direct inquiries to the Bread Loaf dean, Emily Bartels.