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Boston University Arts & Sciences
CAS News August 28, 2013
In This Back-to-School Issue
The new year is upon us. Matriculation is Sunday, September 1, and fall classes start on Tuesday, September 3. This special edition of CAS News provides some just-in-time reminders and resources to help ensure that faculty and students enjoy a smooth and successful return to our essential work of teaching and learning. Here you will find important information for…

Teaching More Advice for the New Academic Year New CAS Resesarch Administration Structure

Polishing Off Your Syllabus
Your syllabus should clearly lay out expectations you have for your students. It also sets the tone for the entire semester. You can find a checklist of items to include at the website of the Center for Excellence & Innovation in Teaching (CEIT). Consider visiting the rest of the CEIT website, including the Fall 2013 calendar of CEIT Teaching Talks and Teaching Tech Talks. For special notes on dates and policies to consider, click here.
Fall Academic Calendar Notes
See the Registrar’s calendar of important Fall 2013 dates, including the following:
  • Rosh Hashanah is observed this year on Thursday/Friday September 5/6 (beginning at sunset on Wednesday, September 4) and Yom Kippur is Saturday, September 14 (beginning at sunset on Friday, September 13). The coincidence of Rosh Hashanah with the first or second meeting of many courses makes it especially important to notify your department’s front office staff and your students about how your courses will be covered or made up if you will be absent. All instructors should anticipate excused student absences on Sept. 5/6 in planning for beginning-of-semester assignments and handouts, class roster confirmation, and momentum building.
  • Monday, September 16: Last day to add a class (Earlier “add” deadlines for some (e.g., foreign language) courses are noted in the University Course Schedule).
  • Monday, October 7: Last day to drop a course without a W.
  • Friday, November 8: Last day to drop a course with a W. After this date, student may not drop your course.
Academic Conduct Codes (Undergraduate and GRS)
An Academic Conduct Code establishes community-wide standards of intellectual honesty to which students’ academic work is expected to adhere. Violations of academic honesty (e.g., plagiarism, cheating on exams) are described in the code, as are possible sanctions and procedures for following up appropriately in cases of suspected misconduct. To read the 2013/14 Academic Conduct Code and GRS Academic Conduct Code, click here.
Academic Enhancement Fund (AEF)
Would the academic goals of an undergraduate course you are teaching this fall be advanced by your hosting a guest expert or taking a class field trip to a Boston-area exhibit, performance, archive, etc.?
  • The AEF assists instructors with modest funding to provide just those kinds of special opportunities to students in undergraduate courses. More information and a simple application are available. Contact either Susan Jackson, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education (617-353-2410), or AEF administrator Tess Varney (617-353-2400) to discuss how enhancements to your current and future courses might be supported by the AEF.
You and Your Classroom
  • The Boston University Classrooms website now provides comprehensive classroom information, with emphasis on all aspects of instructional technology: Equipment, Training, and Assistance. Visit the site to take advantage of newly improved systems, and consider bookmarking for later reference and updates.
  • Up-to-date fall classroom assignments are posted on the Link.
  • It’s always a good idea to check out the location, configuration, media, etc., of your classroom in advance and troubleshoot any problems you encounter.
  • For new faculty and students, the Registrar’s list of building (and other) abbreviations and codes can be useful in navigating BU.
  • Computer projection and audio equipment has been installed in all BU Registrar classrooms. If you need supplementary equipment, submit your request here.
  • Classroom Technology Services (CTS) now offers training classes for faculty and teaching fellows before the start of each semester and by request throughout the academic year. Click here to see a full menu of training options, including troubleshooting guides, or to schedule a training session.
  • CTS is offering open, drop-in training hours for faculty on Friday, August 30, meeting in CAS Room B06A at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., and 4 p.m. This training will cover both basic and more advanced systems.
  • For the first three weeks of the semester, in-classroom assistance from CTS staff will be available to faculty members and teaching fellows who submit a request form.
  • Any faculty member experiencing difficulties with technology in a Registrar classroom during the semester should call the Classroom Technology Hotline (617-353-3227) to receive help within approximately five minutes. The hotline number is posted in every Registrar classroom.
Surviving Day One in Style
  • For some commonsensical advice on getting courses off to a good start on Day One, see this page.
  • For a head start on learning your students’ names, view or download their photos from your class list on the Faculty Link.
Teaching: Emergency Contacts
  • If a classroom emergency is related to facilities, rather than technology (e.g., you and your students are locked out), it should be reported to the Facilities Operations & Service Center at 617-353-2105.
  • In the unlikely event of a health or safety emergency in your classroom, faculty should never hesitate to call the BU Police at 617-353-2121.
  • Any faculty member experiencing difficulties with technology in a Registrar classroom during the semester should call the Classroom Technology Hotline (617-353-3227) to receive help within approximately five minutes. The hotline number is posted in every Registrar classroom.
To Learn More: The CAS Advising Center (100 Bay State Road, 4th floor)
The CAS Advising Center at 100 Bay State Road is an invaluable source of advice and information for both faculty and undergraduates with respect to academic policies, majors, requirements, and academic opportunities in CAS and at BU. Contact them for questions about all aspects of Student Academic Life in the College of Arts & Sciences. And don’t forget to advise your students to seek out advice from our great academic advisors at the CAS Advising Center or in their major departments. Be sure to add the Advising Center’s contact information (phone: 617-353-2400; email: CASadv@bu.edu) to your directories. Read more.
Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Announcement

The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) wants to bring three announcements to your attention:

  • The deadline for student applications for fall-semester UROP funding is Wednesday, September 18, 2013.
  • You may now post descriptions of opportunities for undergraduates to perform research under your mentorship on the UROP website.
  • Non-UROP-supported undergraduate researchers are invited to participate in the annual UROP Symposium on October 18, 2013.
More Advice for the New Academic Year
Welcoming New Faculty

If you are not new to BU: Please be active in welcoming your newest colleagues and making sure they get a smooth start here. If you are the assigned mentor of a new faculty member, get in touch as early as possible to get together and get to know each other.

If you are new to the BU faculty: Don’t wait for people to reach out to you—let your colleagues know you are here, introduce yourself, and seek answers to the questions you have. For new tenured and tenure-track faculty and professors of the practice, Gareth McFeely, Director of Faculty Actions (garethmc@bu.edu) is your contact in the Dean’s Office to learn about events for new faculty. New assistant professors should review the CAS Mentoring policy here.

Welcoming our newest tenure-track and professor of the practice faculty colleagues will be the primary order of business at our first CAS Faculty Meeting on Wednesday, September 11, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. in CAS 522. This meeting is a very important time to meet and welcome new faculty from across the College, who are introduced by their department chairs. The Annual CAS Faculty Reception dedicated to our new colleagues will be held in the Tsai Lobby (ground floor, CAS), starting at 5:30 p.m.

Changes to BUCH Fellowships
After consultation with the chairs and directors of humanities departments and closely related programs, the Boston University Center for the Humanities (BUCH) Executive Committee has reassessed the purposes and parameters of BUCH faculty fellowships, resulting in new fellowship policies. For more information, please see the memo from BUCH Director James A. Winn explaining the new policies.
For More Information on CAS Policies, Procedures, Deadlines, and Events and Ways to Be Involved

All CAS faculty and staff should familiarize themselves with the CAS Faculty & Staff Handbook, the repository of CAS policies, procedures, and other important information. It has chapters on CAS Administration and Organization, Faculty and Staff Personnel Policies and Procedures, Curriculum, and Research. Do you want to know the policy on leaves and sabbaticals? Or how to develop new courses and majors? Or how department chairs are chosen? Or how tenure and promotion work? Or how to submit a grant proposal through CAS? Or who those people are in the Dean’s Office? It’s all in the handbook. The handbook works in the context of policies and procedures that govern all of Boston University; view the Boston University Faculty Handbook for further information.

If you are interested in keeping up with the news about what is going on at Boston University, BU Today is an invaluable source. You can subscribe to it so it appears in your daily email inbox, complete with a listing of BU events.

For regular news and updates about CAS, current stories about CAS people and programs, and information about new policies, events, and meetings, watch for CAS News, which will arrive every two weeks by email.

Department chairs and program and center directors work closely with the Office of the Dean in many ways, but especially through their monthly participation in the Council of Chairs and Directors. There, they discuss the critical issues and opportunities the College and University are facing, and in those meetings the Dean often discusses and seeks advice on new directions, initiatives, and policies. Chairs and directors are then expected to discuss these matters with faculty colleagues at department, program, and center meetings. Those are good opportunities for learning about the College and University and having an impact.

The monthly CAS Faculty Meeting is the College-wide governance structure for tenured and tenure-track faculty to come together to make decisions about College-wide academic policy and curricular matters. Agendas are circulated the week before the meeting. CAS Faculty Meeting procedures, meeting dates for AY 2013/14, and materials can be found online.

A calendar of CAS faculty and College committee meetings through October 31, 2013, is posted here. To view the complete Fall 2013 semester meeting schedule for Faculty Meetings, click here; for the Council of Chairs and Directors (CCD) and Divisional CCD meetings, click here; and for Curriculum Committee, Academic Policy Committee, and Graduate Academic Affairs Committee meetings, click here.

Fall 2013 deadlines for Faculty Actions, including applications for faculty leaves and sabbaticals, are posted here.

The CAS Administrative Directory is found here. Meanwhile, a guide to CAS Administration personnel and offices, including notes on why you might find any of them useful, can be found here.

Creating Our Future, 2010–20: The Strategic Plan of the College of Arts & Sciences , which guides our decision-making and use of resources, can be found here.

See the University Provost’s website for extensive information on faculty development and faculty services.

The Office of the University Ombuds is an independent, impartial, informal, and confidential resource available to all members of the Boston University community. The office provides a safe place to have off-the-record conversations about any kind of problem related to life at BU. Talking to the Ombuds can be a good first step to resolving problems, especially if you are concerned about confidentiality or don’t know where to turn for assistance.

Faculty & Staff Assistance offers a free, confidential helping hand to Boston University employees who may be experiencing difficulties that affect their personal lives or work performance. It is also a place to go to learn how to help a colleague who may be experiencing such challenges.

You will find an extensive archive of videos of and about Boston University produced by the University, students, faculty, staff, and alumni at BUniverse.

And for a break from work, right here on campus, here are pointers to the BU Fitness & Recreation Center, the College of Fine Arts schedule of events, and the BU calendar of most of the events happening on campus.

New CAS Research Administration Structure

The CAS administrative structure for research has changed. Please note that until further notice, the following are the appropriate contacts for CAS-level research matters:

  • The address for forwarding grant proposals and material related to grants and research is the Office of the CAS Associate Deans of the Faculty, CAS 115.
  • For questions and discussion related to research proposals and other matters related to research, contact the appropriate divisional associate dean of the faculty as determined by the subject matter of your proposal, which may be different from the administrative classification of your department:
  • For questions and discussion on proposals related to pedagogy and curriculum, regardless of the discipline:
  • For matters related to sponsorship or support of conferences to be held at BU, or BU-based journals—regardless of discipline or subject matter—contact Pat Johnson.
  • For matters related to conference travel support, contact Richard Wright.
Is this information and format useful? What else should be included in future back-to-school editions of CAS News? Please email us your feedback.
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Keep us in the loop
Let us know about news or upcoming events. Announcements about upcoming events, new faculty book publications, and news items can also be submitted online. If you prefer, you can send news items to cascom@bu.edu, or call Patrick Farrell at 617-358-1185. Events geared toward students should be submitted to the Student Programs Office.

For all matters regarding your alumni, please contact Assistant Director of Alumni Relations Caitlan Nee at 617-358-6275.

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