Updated Information on Academic Continuity Planning

Provost: March 14, 2020

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Dear Colleagues,

I want to express my thanks and profound appreciation for all you are doing to support our students as we move to remote instruction.  I am heartened by how the entire campus has responded and proud of the way in which so many across our large and diverse community have pulled together to support one another.  Every cliché about a successful organization starts and ends with the concept of teamwork, and in the case of SUNY Brockport, the cliché holds true due to the complicated and extensive nature of the work that we have been tasked with.  I thank you all for stepping up to meet this challenge.

I want to share a few updates that may assist as you continue your planning. 

We are extending the deadline to submit midterm grades until Wednesday, March 18 at 4:00 p.m. I hope this flexibility will help those of you who have been overwhelmed with grading on top of planning your delivery method transition. 

The SUNY Brockport faculty resource page will continue to be updated.  Please continue to check back for additional information about available resources and trainings that are available to assist you.  

The library will expand its virtual reference desk and open hours after spring break to better support students and faculty.  I have also authorized additional funds to purchase online materials that may now need. Please contact the library if for assistance or to request materials.

The Academic Affairs Leadership Team is meeting tomorrow afternoon to review all course plans.  After this meeting we will be providing additional guidance and information about the use of campus instructional spaces after spring break.  If you have specific concerns or questions, please contact your department chair or dean.  

The SUNY Provost’s office sent a memo today with new virtual “drop in” instructional design support sessions via Zoom, and ongoing training sessions that you may find helpful.  I have pasted the memo below this message. SUNY also has a resource page for instructors that is listed in the memo.

Again, thank you for all you are doing right now.  I know this situation can be stressful and the shift to remote instruction may intersect with other challenges and concerns.  I want to reiterate the need for flexibility, compassion and collaboration as we move through this process. Above all, I encourage everyone to take care of their personal health and well-being.   

I will continue to provide updates and information as they become available in the days ahead.




March 14, 2019


To:                   SUNY Chief Academic Officers

From:              Tod A. Laursen, Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor

Subject:           New Communications/Planning Resources (COVID-19)

Thank you all for your continued hard work during this challenging time and for your willingness to share information and resources with one another;  work that I have seen countless examples of in recent days. I’m writing this morning with information on a new communications resource and two new options for faculty support (please be sure to share this information with all faculty and relevant staff).

  1. New FAQ and Communication from Chancellor Johnson Posted 13 March 2020
    A new letter from Chancellor Johnson to the broader SUNY community and a broad FAQ has been posted to: https://www.suny.edu/health-alert/. The FAQ is broken down into four categories: operations; general; study abroad; and resources. Please feel free to reference this information on your websites.
  2. Drop-in Instructional Design Support Sessions Beginning Today
    As described in our academic continuity webinar, we have organized live, drop-in, sessions via Zoom video conference to assist faculty with remote course preparation which began today. Staff are available, live, now to assist! Sessions will be staffed with instructional designers and online learning professionals to assist with faculty questions. We anticipate questions about how to move face-to-face activities, assignments, assessments, etc., into a manageable, online learning experience for your students. Staff are available at the days and times listed below:
    • Monday - Friday 7:00AM - 12:00AM Midnight EST
    • Saturday 10:00AM - 5:00PM EST
    • Sunday 1:00PM - 9:00PM EST
      To join a live, drop-in web meeting visit: https://zoom.us/j/160815050
  3. Register Today for Sessions in the SUNY Remote Teaching Clinic
    Upcoming webinars, which begin 3/17, are organized into two categories: Technical Training and Remote Instruction Skills. The Clinic webpage has a third tab that will house recordings of each webinar if you can’t attend or miss a session.  Current offerings in Technical Training focus on utilization of Blackboard. Offerings in Remote Instruction are more content and process based:
    • Effective Online & Distance Teaching in the Visual and Performing Arts:  Dr. Nicola Marae Allain
    • Natural Sciences at a Distance: Making the Move and Meeting the Learning Outcomes: Audeliz Matias, Catherine Gleason,
    • Sujatha Kadaba, & Mary Mawn
    • Advising Remotely: Tips and Tricks for Advising Students from a Distance: Dr. Michele Forte and Dr. Larry Dugan 
    • Coping Strategies for Remote Instructors: Dr. Michele Forte
    • Best Practices for Online Paper Submissions and Grading:  Mary Seel

Register today! New offerings will be posted regularly. You can even make a request for certain topic and we’ll work to find a SUNY expert, just fill out this workshop request form.

As a reminder, these faculty training resources and more are posted on: https://innovate.suny.edu/community/covid19/.

And finally, know that we are working to put together our academic continuity Q&A—having incorporated some new questions—and expect to have the initial version posted to you on Monday.

Tod A. Laursen, PhD
Provost & Senior Vice Chancellor 
The State University of New York 

Last Updated 7/1/20

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