Questions, anyone?
Two new web-based campus resources offer copious information for faculty, others

03 April 2002 | How do you get erasers for the classroom? Is there a place on campus for kids to swim? How should one handle a disruptive student? What are the guidelines for using human subjects? Where can new faculty get help with rental housing or home loans?

To help answer these questions, and hundreds more, campus offices have launched two new online campus resource guides. Both were created with faculty in mind — but others will also find the new guides full of useful information.

‘Faculty Guide to Campus Life’
First produced as a printed book in 1992 by the Office of Educational Development, the “Faculty Guide to Campus Life” is now available on the web at (Those who prefer a hard copy may download a PDF version.) The new and updated incarnation of the guide includes information on a number of programs and teaching tools.

“When the guide first came out, the World Wide Web didn’t exist, and all the ways that people used technology in classes didn’t exist,” notes Steve Tollefson, campus faculty development coordinator, who headed up the conversion to an online version. “Our technology section consisted of a list of slide collections on campus and where to get a videotape machine.”

Users of the just-launched online version will find an entire section on technology — including information on training opportunities, course support, classroom facilities and hardware sources.

The online version of the “Faculty Guide” also capitalizes on advantages of web-based publication — providing frequent updates as well as direct links to campus web sites where additional information on a given topic may be found.

The site is arranged in broad categories — such as “Courses, Enrollment, and Classrooms,” “Faculty Roles and Responsibilities,” and “Mail and Telecommunication Services” — and is written in a question-and-answer format.

Two years in the making, the online guide was funded by the office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost, and jointly sponsored by that office, the Academic Senate, and the office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education. The Emeryville-based firm Animated-Design designed the site.

L&S Faculty Help Desk
Concise, accessible language is a signature feature of the web-based Faculty Help Desk recently launched by the College of Letters & Science.

Located at, the site is dedicated to questions pertaining to teaching in Letters & Science, but relevant for faculty across campus.Policies particular to the college are marked “L&S.”

The new site was created in part to combat myths, says Alix Schwartz, director of academic planning for the Undergraduate Division, who taught on campus as a graduate student instructor, then women’s studies lecturer, for many years.

“I remember when I was teaching, so many people told me that if you give a student an F, rather than a D, you’re doing them a favor — that they can repeat the course and have the grade replaced only if they get an F.”

Schwartz says this advice “turned out not to be true, but at the time I believed it.”

The web site is organized into eight sections, covering enrollment, grading and academic deadlines, confidentiality, students having academic difficulties, student conduct, special arrangements (to accommodate disabled students, student athletes and student parents), and enrichment opportunities for students.

Timely advice is provided throughout the semester in the “Advice of the Week” feature on the site’s home page. During the first week of classes, for instance, it provided information on how to deal with students on class waiting lists. In week 15, “Advice of the Week” addresses whether one should ever assign a grade of “No Report.”

Schwartz notes that most of the information on the help desk “is already available somewhere on campus. But our goal is to make it accessible, brief, to the point — so that you don’t have to wade through all the Academic Senate regulations or college policies to get to the one you want. We were trying to make the language person-to-person for the faculty, not bureaucratic.”


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