SUBJECT: Summer/Fall Updates

Dear Faculty Colleagues,

I hope you are doing well and enjoying the summer months. I wanted to provide you with a summary of items that are likely on your mind as you make your way through the rest of the summer and begin to prepare for the Fall semester. 

Faculty Offices/Building Access (July-end of summer)

Starting in July, classroom and research buildings are open Monday-Friday, 8 am – 5 pm, plus evenings when classes are scheduled. These buildings remain locked except for the designated screening entrance. This entrance is unlocked during the times listed above with screeners who will confirm in ResponsiBLUE the daily green health checks. Temperature and vaccination checks are not conducted. Individuals requiring building access outside of scheduled hours may continue to use the MCard access request process.

The Mardigian Library continues to provide pick-up and return service on campus Sunday-Thursday from 11am-7pm. No appointment is necessary for returns but pick-ups can be scheduled here. Study space is available on the second floor of the library Sunday-Thursday from 11:30am-6pm for more information go to Mardigian Study Space. Research, reference, and librarian support is available virtually through August on Sundays 12-5pm, Monday-Thursday 9-7pm and Friday 9-6pm via live chat or appointment

Face Coverings (July - end of summer)

Please be aware that the university has adopted an adjusted face-covering policy for faculty, staff, students and visitors to campus. Individuals who are fully vaccinated and self-report their status to the university are generally exempt from the indoor masking and social distancing requirements; however, such individuals must still wear a mask in classrooms/labs and on U-M or UM-Dearborn transportation. To qualify for this exemption, faculty, staff, and students must voluntarily report their vaccination status via the website listed below. 

Visitors to campus who wish to qualify for this exception must complete the ResponsiBLUE-Guest daily screening process and voluntarily answer the applicable questions about vaccination status. As a reminder, face coverings are not required outdoors. 

This policy is expected to remain in place through, at least, the end of August. 

University leadership continues to monitor vaccination rates and the latest local, state and national health and safety guidelines. A decision about masking policies for the Fall semester will be shared by mid-August. 

Classroom Visitors/Guest Speakers 

As faculty prepare for the fall semester, please be advised that classroom visitors/guest speakers can be invited for in-person visits to your classes. Faculty will need to follow the current protocols in place for access to buildings (see above) which includes having their visitor/speaker use the ResponsiBLUE-Guest app to complete the daily health check along with ensuring that they follow the current face masking policy.

Engaged Learning Guidelines

We have recently removed the requirement that all engaged learning activities (e.g., internships, co-ops, Semester in Detroit, academic service learning, etc.) must be “essential” in our Engaged Learning Guidelines. Faculty and program supervisors must still ensure that students participating in engaged learning activities are registering using the UM Student Travel Registry

Hub for Teaching & Learning Programming 

If you are feeling any guilt about last year’s teaching or worry about the upcoming year, consider Nancy Chick’s guest blog post that invites us “to focus instead on compassion for ourselves and others, and not forget the magnitude of what we’ve all just been through.” She also suggests ways to maintain a high ethic of care for students, while avoiding burnout, by shifting some of that care-taking to students themselves. Remember that the Hub is here to help you figure out how to move forward towards the transition semester while being compassionate to yourself and to your students. 

Also, join the Hub for Humanizing Online Learning in August. Or look ahead to Fall, when Jesse Stommel’s virtual residency will be sure to shake up any teaching conventions that maybe don’t need to move with us into future semesters.

UM-Dearborn Required Syllabus Template

Please remember to use the Syllabus Template while you are preparing your courses for fall. As we continue to plan for in-person instruction, additional language may be added to the template before the beginning of the semester as it relates to classroom or campus policies. 

Academic Video Captioning Assistant 

The Office of Digital Education recently announced a new closed-captioning assistance service pilot available now until the end of the Winter 2022 semester. The student assistants will get machine-generated captions for video content in MiVideo or Mediasite, then correct a majority of the errors the machine may have made (hopefully attaining 95%+ accuracy). These corrected captions should generally be sufficient for students who like to use captioning to aid in their understanding of the content, but do not require captions under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). UM-Dearborn Disability Services will continue to pay for professionally generated captioning, which has 99%+ accuracy, for courses which have an ADA-eligible student registered.

If you are interested in having any of your MiVideo or Mediasite content captioned utilizing this new service, please fill out the Captioning Correction Request form (make a separate submission for each video) and one of the assistants will review the request within one week and prioritize completion. Shorter videos being viewed by a greater number of students (either in multiple sections or through content being reused in future terms) or containing STEM-related content will have the highest priority and be completed the soonest.

Please take care and reach out to me, your dean, or department chair if you have questions. 

Gabriella Scarlatta
Interim Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs 

Office of the Provost

1080 - Administration Building
4901 Evergreen Road
Dearborn, MI 48128
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Phone: 313-593-5030