Below are answers to some common questions faculty may have surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Grading Frequently Asked Questions

 

What supports are in place when faculty need materials scanned for reading access?

Library Services is working to provide faculty the most appropriate and effective digital materials to support our online learning this semester.  This includes digital versions of current print textbooks and books that have been placed on reserve.  Academic Department Liaison Librarians are committed to working one-on-one with individual faculty members to solve specific issues.  

Two examples of current Library Services support include reviewing circulation data from print reserve materials and purchasing, where available, ebook versions of copies with high circulation and combining information about a range of textbook publishers who are making digital versions of print textbooks freely available this semester during the COVID-19 crisis.  

Academic Department Liaison Librarians consider providing faculty curriculum support to be their current highest priority. Any faculty member with questions should directly email their Department Liaison Librarian. 

Get support from a subject specialist

What happened to spring PEAC courses?

Many of the face-to-face PEACs and PEPCs have transitioned online. Professors Ted France, Jim O'Donnell, and Korey Boyd worked with these skills instructors on plans to support the students in achieving the course objectives in a virtual environment.  These plans differ by the course depending on course objectives and content.

Some of the face-to-face PEACs, PEPCs, and MOSK 101 (Outdoor Pursuits) have been cancelled because these courses could not effectively transition online.  Students in these courses were notified that their course was cancelled, and they were automatically moved into either Yoga or Fitness/Wellness.  Yoga and Fitness/Wellness are previously created online skills courses that are taken by ROCE students.  With advisor support/consultation, students may drop a skills course. 

 

Will the process to evaluate me this year be different given the change to remote teaching and the impact of the pandemic on academia and academic endeavors?

While SIRII’s will be administered, they are for formative purpose only.  In general, our approach will be flexible and understanding of the context for who faculty are needing to meet their spring 2020 responsibilities.

The Faculty Senate supports an approach to evaluation that takes into consideration the unusual circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Faculty Senate advocates for an evaluation in which:

  1. All evidence of teaching and advising effectiveness (e.g., student evaluations of teaching, peer or chair observations) for full time and adjunct faculty) is appropriately contextualized in summative evaluations.  Summative evaluations may be included in formative assessments at the discretion of the faculty member being evaluated.
  2. Evaluators recognize the impact of the disruption of time, effort and intensity for scholarly, creative, and/or professional activities. This includes an impact on the progression, completion, or dissemination of faculty work. For example, scholarly or professional abstracts and creative works accepted for presentation at a venue that were subsequently cancelled due to the pandemic should be considered on par with all other faculty scholarly, creative, and/or professional activities completed.  
  3. Evaluators recognize that faculty members’ ability to provide support for and evidence of service activities within and beyond the college may have been modified in value in terms of time, effort, and intensity.
  4. Supervisors and evaluators give attention to the disruption and impact of this time on faculty with specialized workload assignments.

What will happen if I get sick and can’t teach my classes?

Department chairs have been asked to develop a plan for paired faculty; in other words, if a faculty member becomes ill, the chairs need to have a plan for identifying another faculty member who can substitute for some period of time.  Faculty members who are ill should notify the department chair.  Access to BrightSpace will need to be provided.

 

How do faculty share concerns about students who seem to have detached from classes or who are not participating?

Throughout the remainder of the semester, if you have a student who stops engaging in your virtual classroom, please fill out an Academic Referral Form:

When will I get my new letter of appointment and where do I send it after signing?

Letters of appointment for full-time faculty are on schedule in terms of preparation and mailing to faculty. Letters can be returned digitally now, but eventually, hard copies are requested.

What are programs going to be asked to do after the virtual accepted students open house?

Admissions is working with each department to help arrange a Zoom office hour that prospective students and families can drop in on.  After these Zoom drop-in sessions are done, we’ll then begin June registration. 

What is being planned for the registration of new students for fall 2020?

General advising information has been shared for both current and incoming students:

To All Students and Faculty:

At this time, we have made a decision to push back advising and registration by two weeks. The Academic Advising Center will follow up with both students and faculty regarding plans for advising and registration over the next week.

Students should now see new registration date and times on their PrideNET page (My Profile --> My Registration --> Registration Date and Time)

Traditional Graduate and Undergraduate Student Advising and Registration Dates:

  • April 6 - Advising period opens for Summer and Fall 2020
  • April 20 - Registration opens for Summer 2020 and Fall 2020

Regional and Online Graduate and Undergraduate Advising and Registration Dates:

  • April 6 - Registration opens for Summer 2020 for NEW Regional and Online students
  • April 20 - Registration opens for Summer 2020 for CURRENT Regional and Online students

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Leigh-Ann Gomes | Director of Academic Advising

Marshall Bradway, M.B.A. | Registrar

 

How will the new core curriculum be implemented this fall? Will we be ready?

There is a team focused on implementation of the new Core for Fall 2020.  Senior Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs Mary Ann Coughlin is leading this team.

When will decisions be made about the summer and fall sessions? Will we return to campus to teach?

Ongoing and TBD.  We will update as more information is distributed and additional decisions made.

Where and how do students get information about Federal Work Study?

Current students who completed their FAFSA forms are having their work study allocations calculated and provided.  Incoming students have work study, when eligible, included in their financial aid packages.

What about student evaluations of courses for this semester?

Please see the above answer to the question regarding faculty evaluations.

How does the tenure clock stoppage work?

Whereas the Springfield College Spring 2020 semester was significantly disrupted due to the COVID-19 virus, an interim process will be in place for all candidates who are scheduled to apply for tenure or long-term appointment during the Fall 2020 semester. At the time that candidates submit their materials for their 2019-2020 annual evaluation, they will be required to sign and submit a form to Academic Affairs* indicating whether or not they wish to extend their probationary period by one calendar year. This decision will be binding and a copy of the form will become part of the faculty member’s personnel file**. 

*Notification and forms will be provided by the Office of Academic Affairs.

**Faculty are encouraged to seek input from their chair and dean before making their decision

How do I and my advisees who don't have Adobe Pro accounts submit course substitution and transfer pre-approval forms?

If computer systems can’t work with forms provided, prepare an e-mail that includes all of the necessary information.  Course substitutions need to move from advisor to chair (and follow the usual chain of approvals thereafter).  Transfer approval forms go to the Academic Advising Office, Leigh-Ann Gomes as the point person.

How do students return rented books?

All students with rental books will receive three emails reminding them that their rental book is due to be returned to the store.  As part of that email, they will receive instructions on how they can print a label and return the book to the store free of charge. This information is also available on the Springfield College bookstore’s webpage. (As of: 4/20/20)

How do students return library materials?

Library Services staff are working remotely, so there is no access to physical items in our collection. If you have borrowed library materials, such as print books or DVDs, you do not need to return them at this time. Due dates have been extended through June 1, 2020 and overdue fees will not be billed.

What resources are available for students and faculty without reliable internet access?

Students should reach out to Sue Nowlan, Dean of Students.  Faculty should communicate their needs to department chairs who will work with deans to solve issues.

How do faculty and department chairs submit substitution and waiver forms?

For graduating seniors and graduate students who may need substitutions completed we will follow the below procedure:

The student and advisor start the email request include: Student Name, student ID, major; list the course the student took and the course they are substituting it for: for example, Health Psychology (PSYC 320, taking spring 20) for Needs of Aging (RHDS 470).

Forward the email with advisor approval to the department chair for their approval; the chair will then forward to Dean.  Assuming everyone supports, the approved thread is sent to Diana Rand, student records data coordinator. Please cc Diana Rand on all approval emails.

Once all approvals are received, Diana will forward them to advising and the Registrar's Office will process them; Registrar's Office will still be sending out the notifications once they are processed.

For all students: If any change of majors need to be completed:  Emails should be prepared with the following information:  Student name and ID#; Current Major; New major.  

Forward the email to the current major department chair for approval.

Once the chair approves, forward to the new department chair for approval; cc Diana Rand on all approval emails.  Diana Rand will process, once all required approvals are received and will also send out final notifications.

Will student transcripts be altered in any way to document this semester as impacted by the pandemic?

The Faculty Senate approved the following wording for addition to every student transcript detailing the spring 2020 semester:

A global health emergency during this term required significant course changes.  Unusual enrollment patterns and grades may reflect the tumult of the time.

How are “holds” being managed for students during registration this year?

Students with holds have been contacted by the departments where the holds are in effect. Some of these have been released and resolved; however, absolute holds are still in place. (As of: 4/20/20)

How are we handing course evaluations this year?

Course evaluations for the Spring 2020 term will open on April 22nd.  Like many things, the course evaluation process has been disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. To provide context for how these evaluations will be used on April 13th, the Senate passed a motion about the context in which faculty evaluations should be conducted.  Below is a segment of that motion that pertains to course evaluations, for the complete text of the motion, please refer to the Senate minutes:

The Faculty Senate supports an approach to evaluation that takes into consideration the unusual circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Faculty Senate advocates for an evaluation in which
 

1. All evidence of teaching and advising effectiveness (e.g., student evaluations of teaching, peer or chair observations) for full time and adjunct faculty) is appropriately contextualized in summative evaluations.  Summative evaluations may be included in formative assessments at the discretion of the faculty member being evaluated.

The procedure for administering these evaluations is outlined below:

  • All course evaluations will be conducted online.  We are using the same instrument questions (the former SIRII) but administering them via our survey platform, Qualtrics.
  • In Brightspace, the evaluation links will be available under the "Course Info" section of each course's Navigation Bar.   There will be two separate course evaluation links:
      1. Course Evaluation for Main Campus
      2. Course Evaluation for Regional/Online Campuses
  • Note for ROCE courses only: the course evaluation link is also listed in the week 13 module.  Students in these courses can access the link either here or as described above. 

Administration Tips

  1. Please consider setting aside time or assign time for your students to take the course evaluation before the semester is over.  You will need to direct/show students (as described above) where to find the evaluation links.
  2. Students will have to enter the course number and section for each course they are evaluating.  The first screen of the evaluation explains this in detail.
  3. As usual, all course evaluations are anonymous.
  4. The course evaluation links will remain open until the end of the semester.

Any questions or issues related to the administration of the evaluation should be directed to Raldy Laguilles, Director of Institutional Research at jlaguilles@springfieldcollege.edu

(As of: 4/23/20)

What is happening with the undergraduate academic awards and distinguished grad student awards for this year? (Students may wish to add these honors to their resumes, but have they been notified of these honors?)

Students will be notified of any awards very soon (many have already been notified by individual departments), and the college is planning an awards ceremony to be held during commencement (whether that is in August or October or a date to be announced). (As of: 4/20/20)

False

If you have a question that has not yet been answered, please propose it below to be added to this FAQ page: