Texas Tech University

Academic Affairs Information for Faculty/Staff

Faculty/Instructor Frequently Asked Questions 

General guidance for Instructors of Record

Resource Guide for Faculty: Implementing the Facial Covering Policy and Mandatory Masks

THECB's Principles on the Acceptance of Credit (including TTU's Guidance for Instructors of Record)

Preventing Academic Misconduct in Online Classrooms

Faculty Observations of the Spring 2020 Transition to Remote Teaching and Learning

On April 17, Department Chairs, School Directors, and Area Coordinators were asked to report their observations and experiences with the University's transition to remote teaching and learning. Although asked for informal input, many chairs and directors directly queried their faculty, some with formal surveys. The aggregate comments total approximately 30 standard pages. A general summary of the comments was shared with Provost Council on April 24 and is available here.

Internship guidance for summer 2020 term

Credit-bearing internships: these are internships for which the student will earn academic credit at TTU:

  • Departments should make every attempt to work with internship providers to determine whether any components of internships can be completed remotely. Those options should be made available to students to reduce the need for students to be physically present at an internship location.
  • Some internships may require an on-site, physical presence. In these situations, departments should prioritize student safety and consider whether the credit earned via the internship can be substituted with another course.
    • If substitution is not an option, the department should use best judgment to determine whether to allow the internship to proceed, with approval by their Dean's Office.
    • If substitution is possible, and the student can complete the approved substitution to fulfill the credit hour requirement, the internship opportunity essentially becomes non-credit bearing. See below for guidance specific to non-credit bearing internships.

Non-credit bearing internships that are required for degree programs: these are internships that are not connected to semester credit hour generation but that a student must complete to graduate:

  • Departments should make every attempt to work with internship providers to determine whether any components of internships can be completed remotely. Those options should be made available to students to reduce the need for students to be physically present at an internship location.
  • Some internships may require an on-site, physical presence. In these situations, departments should prioritize student safety and consider whether the experience earned via the internship can be substituted with another experience.
    • If substitution is not possible, the department should use best judgment to determine whether to allow the internship to proceed, with approval by their Dean's Office.
    • If substitution is possible, and the student can complete the approved substitution to fulfill the graduation requirement, the internship opportunity essentially becomes non-credit bearing/non-required for graduation. See below for guidance specific to these types of internships.

Non-credit bearing internships that are not required for degree programs: these are internships that are not connected to semester credit hour generation nor are they required for a student's degree program:

  • Departments should inform student that, as the internship is non-credit bearing and not required for graduation, the student should use their best judgement in deciding whether to complete the internship.

Guidance from the Graduate School

Graduate Students

Resources for Faculty and Staff Members Teaching Courses and/or Advising Students

General Resources

Please see the Division of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion's resource page for information related to general support resources for faculty members.

Texas Tech University provides free and confidential counseling services to employees and their immediate family members through an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) at The Counseling Center @ TTUHSC. For additional information or to make an appointment, please call 806-743-1327 or email counselingcenter@ttuhsc.edu.

If you have questions related to upcoming personal or business travel, please consult the CDC's Travel Guidance website.

Resources for Teaching and Learning

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Suzanne Tapp at the TLPDC or Lisa Leach at eLearning and Academic Partnerships.

Resources for faculty in need of computer equipment:

The TTU Office of the CIO (IT) is working to assist faculty and students lacking access to computer equipment for the purposes of teaching and learning. IT will retain a very limited number of laptop computers, available for short-term loans, for faculty members who experience unexpected equipment failure. Affected faculty members should make their requests for loaners through their respective Dean/Associate Dean who will forward their approved requests to verify.ithelpcentral@ttu.edu.

Academic Advising and Support for Students

Textbooks and Supplemental Instructional Materials

It is possible that some students may be prevented from returning to campus to retrieve textbooks and other instructional materials needed for their courses. Please read the information below carefully for guidance on accommodating these students:

      • Students who are prevented (e.g., reside in a city with a lockdown in place) from returning to TTU campus to retrieve course materials should inform their Instructors of Record as soon as possible.
      • Instructors of Record should work to identify means of making instructional materials and additional supplemental materials available online. Additional information about that process is available here:
        • The Fair Use feature of the copyright law allows for the use of materials for educational purposes. The main consideration about this is that the material be secured to only the students and the faculty in a course (e.g., behind eraider). More information can be found at: docs.google.com/document/d/10baTITJbFRh7D6dHVVvfgiGP2zqaMvm0EHHZYf2cBRk/preview
        • Additional information and resources are available in the last pull-down menu titled "Additional Student Resources" on the eLearning Resources page.

Instructors of Record in need of assistance should contact Vice Provost Melanie Hart.

Student Success Resources

Student Success and Retention, University Academic Advising, TTU Office of the CIO, and Worldwide eLearning have identified Blackboard Collaborate Ultra as one of the most robust technologies for facilitating productive interactions between academic advisors and their students that (1) requires minimal technology setup for students, and (2) aligns with their likely familiarity with synchronous and asynchronous learning experiences in Blackboard. These offices have developed Blackboard Collaborate Ultra spaces for advising and student support interactions for each academic college/division and key academic support programs. If academic advisors and other student support staff opt to use Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, training for effective use of this technology is available online in TTU Cornerstone.

Student Appointments

Students should conduct all advising appointments remotely. All academic correspondence and related student appointments should be documented by all personnel in the student's educational record using strive.ttu.edu. All remote interactions should only take place via approved TTU technologies (e.g, Skype4Business, strive.ttu.edu, Outlook, Blackboard). Strive.ttu.edu training information can be accessed online at success.ttu.edu/strivetrain

Currently, Advance Registration for the Fall 2020 term will continue as planned. Please review MyTech for individual student advance registration date.

Students in need of computer and other equipment

The TTU Office of the CIO (IT) is working to assist faculty and students lacking access to computer equipment for the purposes of teaching and learning.

IT will retain a larger but still limited number of laptop computers, for remainder-of-term loan, for students who do not otherwise have access to the equipment that is necessary for them to be successful in their courses. Students who need to request an equipment loan should be advised to report the need to their academic dean. Deans or deans' representatives are asked to vet the requests. Because IT's supply is limited, we want to be as diligent as possible when assessing student need. Deans or deans' representatives who support a student's request should forward that request to verify.ithelpcentral@ttu.edu.

To pick up loaner equipment, students or faculty must be vetted and on the list sent to verify.ithelpcentral@ttu.edu, show up in person with a government issued photo ID (or Tech ID) at the ASC. IT will contact them after receiving their names to make pick up arrangements. Loaner laptops will be distributed until IT runs out.

To accommodate students who are not in Lubbock and who are in need of computer and/or other equipment (e.g., headphones, webcams, phone for internet connection), IT is prepared to work with the Colleges so that the Colleges sign out the necessary equipment and then, following standard protocols and using appropriate tracking controls, ship the equipment to their students. Colleges needing to pursue this new option should contact verify.ithelpcentral@ttu.edu.

Extension of the Probationary Period for Tenure Track Faculty as a Result of Spring 2020 COVID-19 Disruptions

Disruptions in research and scholarly activity as a result of the COVID-19 crisis will likely necessitate an extension of the probationary period for some members of the Texas Tech faculty. For faculty members who are currently in the final year of the probationary period and have already started promotion and tenure procedures in the department, requests for an extended probationary period will be considered on a case-by-case basis. For all other tenure-track faculty members, requests for an extension of the probationary period by one year will be granted automatically; however, a formal request is required, which should be made through the Office of the Dean in the faculty member's college by August 15, 2020, thereby allowing the request to reach the Provost's Office by no later than August 31, 2020.

If a one-year extended probationary request is granted to faculty members who have not completed a three-year review, the three-year review should occur at the regular time (i.e., three years after the initial appointment). Faculty members who have been granted a one-year extension are not required to serve the entire extended probationary period before making application for promotion and tenure. They may apply at the beginning of their sixth year of service if they believe the additional year is not necessary for a successful application. In so doing, however, the faculty member will forfeit the additional one-year extension.

Students Activated as Part of the Texas Army National Guard

Texas Administrative Code Title 19, Part 1, Chapter 4, Subchapter A, Rule 4.8: Absence due to military service provides the basis for institutional guidance for TTU students who are Guard members or who are otherwise called up for military service.

Students who are being called up for military service are asked to notify Senior Associate Registrar Brenda Martinez. Mrs. Martinez will help centralize communication with the students' home colleges.

Affected students may elect to continue to proceed with Spring 2020 coursework as delivery of all TTU courses has moved online.

Affected students who are unable to continue with their Spring 2020 coursework because of the nature of their military service should work with their academic deans' offices to file for grades of Incomplete in their Spring 2020 courses. Grades of Incomplete will not affect student GPAs, nor will they affect student financial aid awards for the Spring 2020 term.

Graduating students who are unable to continue with their Spring 2020 coursework because of the nature of their military service should work with their academic deans' offices to file for grades of Incomplete in their Spring 2020 courses. Deans' offices will adjust these students' graduation dates to the August 2020 term. Affected students who complete work required to resolve their grades of Incomplete before the August 2020 commencement date will be awarded their degrees in August.