Coronavirus Information

Faculty Information FAQs

Included below are a selection of frequently asked general questions related to faculty and YSU's responses to Covid-19. More detailed information can be found at the following sites

Frequently asked questions:

  • Are synchronous courses allowed?

    Synchronous courses are permitted as long as (1) the synchronous course has all information needed by the student recorded and/or available online outside of the synchronous class time and (2) that although students are held responsible for the material delivered during the synchronous sessions, students are not penalized for not attending the synchronous portion of the course. Reminder that federal law requires that online teaching must include “regular and substantive interaction” with students.

    Record your lecture using Blackboard Collaborate (Video TutorialWeb Tutorial), WebEx Meetings and Teams (PDF TutorialWeb Tutorial), or Screencast-o-matic (PDF Tutorial). Annotate your PowerPoint slides or record a voice-over as you go through your slides (PDF Tutorial).

    Webex can record and be used to create lecture capture videos and to host synchronous virtual meetings. To allow for academic equity, these sessions can be recorded. Webex recordings autogenerate a transcript. As such, faculty members would not have to type the transcript themselves - it is automatically created. If other means are being used to create videos, like screencast-o-matic, or through a video taken with a phone or iPad, videos can be uploaded to Microsoft Stream. Microsoft Stream is an application within our Office 365 tools that is a streaming platform where students can easily watch the videos on any device. When you upload a video to Stream it automatically creates a transcript making the videos ADA accessible. Blackboard Collaborate does not generate a transcript but has many other great features.

  • What about students with a disability?

    Associate Director Gina McGranahan has reached out to all students registered with Disability Services and individually contacted faculty members who may have students directly impacted by changing to online learning. Faculty members should check their YSU emails for updated accommodations that may be needed due to the change to an online environment. Faculty members with questions about Disability Services should visit the updated Disability Services website. This site contains specific Q&A information related to online learning environments for students with registered disabilities. For additional questions contact Gina by email at or by phone at 330.941.2090.

    Note from Becky Varian, director of the Center for Student Progress: The Rapid Response Plan could also be enacted if a student needs something transcribed or other accommodations. According to our EIT Accessible Standards document: If a student, faculty, or staff person discloses a disability and needs accessible content after a semester has started, the university has a Rapid Response Plan in place to assist the instructor for 10 business days while the instructor finds a permanent solution. During times such as these, it may be necessary to use this plan more frequently.

    Contact Gina McGranahan for assistance with transcriptions, 330-941-2090 or email at

  • Will training for faculty continue?

    Resources, training, consultation and support will continue to be provided by the YSU Academic Continuity Team. Remote teaching tools and current training and support schedules will be updated weekly at: Blackboard video and web tutorials can be found on the Blackboard instructor support website. Additional resources can be found through the YSU academic continuity page.

  • Are University meetings taking place, including Academic Senate?

    All University, College and Departmental meetings will be held through WebEX until further notice. There will be no face-to-face meetings.

    Academic Senate has cancelled all meetings of the larger Senate body for the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester. The Executive Committee will act on behalf of the body to maintain the Senate’s effective operation in matters of immediate importance to the academic environment and shared governance. Issues considered by the Committee to be non-critical in nature will be held until the Fall semester. The Executive Committee advises that chairs may conduct meetings deemed to be necessary, but these meetings should be conducted remotely (e.g., via WebEx, Zoom, etc.).  Reports/minutes from these committee meetings should be submitted to Carol Lamb ( and Chet Cooper ( The Executive Committee requests that current departmental senators retain their position until new elections can be held in the Fall.  For those departments who have already elected new representatives for the next academic year or wish to change their representative, contact Chet Cooper ( with the name of the new senator.  For at-large senators, the Committee also requests that current college representatives retain their position until the fall elections.  Should an individual wish to step down, again, please notify Cooper.

  • What resources are available from the Office of Research Services?

    Visit Communications with sponsoring agencies should be coordinated by the Office of Research Services, connect via

  • What about student and chair evaluations?

    Student evaluations of instructors will not occur for the remainder of Spring 2020. Any first 7- or 8-week session evaluations will be considered valid. Also, an MOU is currently being worked on to extend deadlines for chairperson evaluations of faculty members and governance documents.

  • Do I still hold office hours?

    Office hours should be conducted online by the faculty member, making themselves available by email or other remote options during their designated office hours. If these hours have changed from the beginning of the semester, the chairperson and students must be notified. Hold virtual Office Hours using Blackboard Collaborate (Video TutorialWeb Tutorial) or WebEx Meetings and Teams (PDF TutorialWeb Tutorial). Hold call-in Office Hours without giving out your personal cell phone number using Google Voice (Web Tutorial).

  • What about online proctoring?

    YSU partners with Examity and Respondus to provide support for automated test proctoring. Respondus is the preferred tool for Spring 2020. However, students using Google Chromebooks will not be able to use Respondus. If you have students working on a Google Chromebook, use Examity for proctored exams. Please contact ACT if you need support for automated test proctoring.Respondus offers two different test proctoring options, Monitor and LockDown. LockDown is available for use in Blackboard Ultra (PDF Tutorial) and Blackboard Original (PDF Tutorial). If administering a proctored test through Examity in Blackboard, share this test-taker guide with your students

  • Can I add graduate assistants to Blackboard courses?

    Yes, email the Distance Education IDDC lab at Instructions also on the ACT website.