To keep faculty informed on the latest news and happenings, we have compiled a list of key resources, FAQs and more. Use this page as a guide during these exceptional circumstances, from delivering content online to providing support through helpful tools and services. Check back frequently for updates.
Resources for Teaching, Working Online and Conducting Research
Keep Teaching – Discover everything you need to know about delivering courses online and colleagues to help along the way.
Keep Learning – Get general tips and insights to guide your students through their transition to online learning.
Research – Find guidance on navigating labs and answers about graduate thesis or dissertation questions that students may ask.
Working Remotely – Ease into working remotely and continue productivity no matter where you work.
Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning – Pedagogy for online teaching in this new environment.
Library Services – Locate available library research and instructional support resources.
Employment FAQs – Refer to these frequently asked questions about work and instruction information through COVID-19.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most frequently asked questions by faculty regarding teaching and learning in an online format to ensure academic continuity at UCF. We’ve also compiled a list of FAQs about academics, operations, employment, travel, health and safety, and more. Check out all coronavirus FAQs.
How will course delivery change now that my course is online?
Who can I contact for help with Webcourses@UCF?
Should I stream face-to-face lectures online?
That is your choice as a faculty member. If you choose to stream your lectures synchronously to students, we recommend that you use Zoom. If you are already using tools such as Conferences or Panopto, you may continue to do so. Alternatively, you can use one of those tools to record a lecture in advance and provide a recording for students to watch later. For large courses, we recommend recording your lectures so that students may watch them asynchronously.
How should I stay in touch with my students now that classes have transitioned to Webcourses@UCF?
If you are able to, continue using the communication methods you have defined in your syllabus. If the communication methods you have defined in the syllabus are not viable during this situation, we advise using the inbox in Webcourses@UCF.
What if my students require additional accommodations during the transition from face-to-face to online courses?
What support resources are available for my students?
The Division of Digital Learning has created a Keep Learning page for students. In addition, a Keep Learning link has been added to all online courses in Webcourses@UCF that will direct students to that page for information.
How will I ensure the academic integrity of my online exams?
For faculty who offer quizzes and exams online, the university offers two options for test proctoring: ProctorHub and Respondus LockDown Browser.
Now that I’m teaching my classes remotely, should I put my exams and assignments online?
What if I am ill, have recently traveled to a CDC Level 3 location, or am otherwise unable to continue teaching my classes remotely?
As a UCF faculty member, how do I access LinkedIn Learning content?
How will grading work for the Spring 2020 term?
For the Spring 2020 term, students will be able to elect satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading in any course. Faculty members will continue to assign grades as outlined in the syllabi. At the end of the semester, the grades you submit will be converted by the Registrar’s Office to either satisfactory or unsatisfactory, for students selecting this option. The grade designation will appear on their transcript with an annotation that the S/U option was offered this spring semester because of the pandemic.
What impact will the satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading have on my students?
The opt-in choice for students recognizes the very difficult time that they and all of us face and upholds UCF’s commitment to student success. Many students are juggling education, jobs and job loss, family responsibilities, and concerns about the future. This opportunity will help alleviate some of that stress for our students. We are developing information to help students decide which choice might be better for them and to help advisors answer student questions. This information will be available to students and advisors before the opt-in period begins.
How will the satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading work?
In brief, this is how opt-in will work:
- Undergraduate and graduate students may opt in to S/U grading and may choose during a yet-to-be-determined time in April;
- Students may choose course-by-course;
- S/U grades will have no effect on GPA;
- Courses with “S” grades will count toward degree requirements, but not necessarily toward majors (if, for example, a “B” is required in a certain course in an undergraduate major);
- For students who opt in to S/U grading:
- Undergraduate grades of “A” through “C” will be replaced by “S”; “C-” and below will be replaced by “U”;
- Graduate grades of “A” through “B-” will be replaced by “S”; “C+” and below will be replaced by “U”.
In a very few cases, certain courses may be excluded from this opportunity. For instance, the M.D. program, which is on a different academic calendar, is excluded from this program.
More details are coming soon about how students can opt in and deadlines.
Who is eligible for an extension of a tenure-earning probationary period?
All presently employed tenure-earning faculty who will apply for tenure during or after the 2020-2021 academic year are eligible. If you are currently scheduled to submit your tenure dossier in August 2020, you are eligible.
Those excluded from this opportunity are faculty members who have already been considered for tenure this academic year (that is, those who submitted their dossier in fall 2019, and those tenure-track faculty who will begin their employment with UCF on or after April 1, 2020).
If I am eligible, how do I request an extension of my probationary period?
Submit the request to your chair/director (or dean if there are no departments/schools in the college) using the tenure clock extension COVID-19 form. A recommendation is made to the dean, who forwards a recommendation to Faculty Excellence. The extension is issued by Faculty Excellence. It is understood that such requests will be presumptively approved.
I had a year’s extension due to my taking parental leave. Will I still be eligible?
Yes. A year will be added to the adjusted time period following the previous extension.
I came to UCF with tenure credit. Will I still be eligible?
Yes. A year will be added to your original dossier submission date. You will still be able to request a withdrawal of some or all of your tenure credit per regulation 3.015 if you would like to do so at a later date.
Will the standards for tenure be set higher for me because I’ve had an extra year toward tenure?
No. The standards specified in your department/school and college governance documents, as well as Regulation 3.015, remain in effect when your tenure review occurs. The department/school and college standards will be applied without prejudice.
What if the promotion and tenure requirements change?
If a faculty member has a majority of their tenure earning credit by the time new tenure criteria are adopted, they shall be evaluated for tenure under the criteria as they existed prior to modification unless the employee notified the university in writing at least 30 days prior to commencement of the tenure consideration that they choose to be evaluated under the newly adopted criteria.
What if I don’t want an extension to my probationary period? Do I have to do anything?
No. As per regulation 3.015, faculty may choose to be considered for tenure on the regularly scheduled time period (in the sixth year for faculty not in the College of Medicine and the eighth year in the College of Medicine).
Is there a time limit when I have to apply for a COVID-19 tenure clock extension?
Yes. If you are currently scheduled to submit your tenure dossier in August 2020, you must file your tenure clock extension request by May 15, 2020. If you are scheduled to submit your tenure dossier after August 2020, then you must file your tenure clock extension request by September 1, 2020.
When can I formally apply for the extension?
Beginning April 1, 2020, you can formally apply for the extension.
Information for Faculty Researchers
The Office of Research is working with campus leadership, as well as local and federal agencies to help support our faculty and students conducting research while keeping them safe. We will continue to update this information, so please check back frequently. While some answers may not be what you are looking for, remember that your safety is our number one priority as we determine the best way to move forward with our research operations.
Lab Access and Research Protocol
Can I continue my research?
In early March, the Office of Research identified and approved researchers who could continue to have limited access to their labs. However, in response to the “stay at home” order, the list will be further reduced to only allow access to personnel critical to maintaining facility operations. Those individuals will be selected by their college deans or directors and approved by the Vice President of Research. More information will be forthcoming.
Can faculty and students still access labs to conduct research?
In early March, the Office of Research had identified and approved researchers who could continue to have limited access to their labs. However, in response to the “stay at home” order, the list will be further reduced to only allow access to personnel critical to maintaining facility operations. Those individuals will be selected by their college deans or directors and approved by the Vice President of Research. More information will be forthcoming.
Can I start long-term research at this time?
This is not the time to begin long-range projects. There are too many uncertainties regarding when campus will be fully operational. Federal agencies and other research partners are aware of this unique situation and the need for social distancing. The Office of Research will work with you once we have more direction from our partners on no-cost extensions you may need to complete your work, once we are fully operational again.
What if one of my subjects, lab members, colleagues or I suddenly become sick at work?
If someone becomes unwell in the workspace and there is reason to suspect they may have come into contact with COVID-19, the unwell person should be removed to an area which is at least 6 feet away from other people. If possible, find a room or area where they can be isolated behind a closed door, such as a staff office. If it is possible to open a window, do so for ventilation.
The individual who is unwell should use their mobile phone to call a designated public health service number. If it is an emergency (if they are seriously ill or injured or their life is at risk) then you should call 911 and explain the situation and relevant information, such as what reason to believe the individual may have been exposed to CoVID-19 and describe their current symptoms.
While waiting for advice from the public health or emergency service, the affected person should remain at least six feet from other people. They should avoid touching people, surfaces and objects and should cover their mouth and nose with a disposable tissue when they cough and objects and should cover their mouth and nose with a disposable tissue when they cough or sneeze and put the tissue in a bag or pocket then throw the tissue in the bin. If they don’t have any tissues available, they should cough and sneeze into the crook of their elbow.
If they need to go to the bathroom while waiting for medical assistance, they should use a separate bathroom if available.
To avoid risking people who have conditions that put them at higher risk of serious illness (such as diabetes, heart and lung disease, older age) make arrangements for teleworking or advise them to take additional precautions, such as staying at home.
Can I proceed with non-human research projects?
This is up to each investigator, but remember there is a lot of uncertainty at this time. It may be best to stop or pause if possible. Safety is should be your guide. However, now is not the time to start new research.
I have a face-to-face experiment, but we are being told social distancing. What should I do?
Safety and preventing the spread of this disease is our number one priority and should be yours too. If you can’t do your work any other way, postpone the experiment.
What if I decide to suspend my study until the COVID-19 crisis is over?
There is no need to inform the IRB. However:
1) If your study is a greater-than-minimal risk study that involves some type of patient care, you must ensure your suspension does not increase any risk to those study subjects.
2) If possible, make sure you contact any study subject who will be affected by this suspension (i.e., a study visit will be cancelled, etc.)
3) You should make a note in your study records of this temporary suspension along with the justification and any actions taken in case you are ever audited.
What type of changes “must” be approved by the IRB prior to implementing them?
In general, changes that:
- Are not being made as a direct result of the COVID-19 crisis, no matter how minor.
- Are greater-than-minimal risk changes that are a result of the COVID 19 crisis.
- Are on the protocol that is a greater-than-minimal risk study.
What types of changes can I make to my protocol that do not require IRB approval?
In general, changes that are temporary in nature in order to limit subject exposure to the virus (this means that when this crisis is over, you will return to all pre-crisis procedures):
- Change on interaction methods, such as changes from face-to-face to over the phone or some other similar devices.
- Please remember that this change can only be implemented if it presents no greater risk to participants. For example, if your study was taking place in person to avoid the risk by direct observations of the research subjects, a change to over the phone would not be permitted without a formal review by the IRB in the form of a modification.
- Do not add any additional risk to any subjects or study staff.
- You should make a note in your study records regarding the above mentioned minor temporary change(s) that were made along with the justification in case you are ever audited.
I am submitting or have research projects underway. Where can I find guidelines from sponsoring agencies?
Federal and private sponsoring agencies are starting to communicate changes to their operations in response to coronavirus. As the situation changes, we expect more guidance from individual agencies. The Office of Research will share those communications as we receive them. Visit www.research.ucf.edu/coronavirus.html for the most up-to-date information.
What if the greater-than-minimal risk revision can’t wait for IRB approval?
If it is in the best interest of the subject, and will minimize or prevent transmission of COVID 19, then make the change, however:
1) You should immediately notify the IRB by email at IRB@ucf.edu.
2) You should make a note the change(s) in your study records with the justification.
3) You must submit the revision of protocol with the change(s) to the IRB as soon as possible, noting that the revision was implemented because of an emergency, including the justification for that emergent change(s).
What if there is a desire or need to keep a temporary COVID-19-related change a permanent change for research?
1) If you can make the change in your study records with justification, then initiate the change and submit the revision.
2) When you submit the revision, please include in the description of the revision that the change was already implemented, and the reason it was implemented “emergently”.
Research-related Travel and Pay
I’m supposed to travel in the next few weeks. Should I cancel?
No Travel Approval Petitions will be approved at this time.
I scheduled a speaker to come to campus. Should I cancel?
All on-campus events have been canceled until further notice. However, speakers may continue to participate virtually through online platforms, which are available to faculty including Zoom, Skype and Teams.
Can I still use my p-card? Are there any special restrictions?
You may use your p-card as usual. Follow the routine guidelines and procedures. All F&A procedures remain status quo until further notice.
How can I access UCF's library resources online?
Over 98% of the UCF Libraries’ journal subscriptions are full text and searchable online. More than 500 online databases cover all major subject disciplines. These resources are available at: https://library.ucf.edu/find/articles/
All online library information resources are available to the UCF community regardless of which location (such as the Rosen College Library, The Curriculum Materials Center, the UCF Downtown Campus Library, and UCF Connect locations) a student or faculty member uses.
Visit this webpage for more information about the library’s resources during this time.
I have a grant application due soon. Will the Office of Research and the Research Foundation help me submit?
Yes. At this time all operations continue. The office is working remotely — almost all functions simply shifted in methodology and are be completed remotely. If you need to speak to someone about your grant because of some urgent deadline or extenuating circumstance email email@example.com. Please be considerate as we are experiencing a large volume of inquiries and like you, individuals are also concerned about their own personal situation.
Will mail and supply delivery continue?
As long as the university is open, mail service will continue. Supply delivery may fluctuate as vendors will implement their own procedures and may not be making deliveries. If you have not already done so, we suggest checking in with your suppliers and making plans to ensure you have all the materials you need for your work.