Faculty FAQs

24/7 support from the ASU Experience Center

The ASU Experience Center is open 24/7, 365 days a year. If you have questions or need support, get in touch now.

The following answers are based on commonly asked questions by faculty members preparing to teach via the ASU Sync modality. If you have additional questions that are not addressed here, please email provost@asu.edu so that we can add answers.

Teaching FAQs

How do I request to teach remotely during fall 2020?

If you fall into one of the high risk categories as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention please go through an ADA consultant at the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at equityandinclusion@asu.edu or via confidential E-Fax at (480) 237-7998 or via phone at (480) 727-1770. If you have other concerns, please request a "Faculty Request for Accommodation - Fall 2020" form from your dean.

How do I know if I need to distribute attendance to create distancing in my classroom?

Occupancy, including the instructor and any instructional aides, should not exceed 50% of the room capacity. A listing of all instructional spaces and their capacities will be posted soon. In the meantime, for University Classrooms, the capacity of each room is located at the following site: https://www.dropbox.com/s/9p3j084p3jjbcyg/FALL2020.xls.

How does the instructor ensure safe distancing in the classroom?

Classrooms are configured differently, and as part of class management, the faculty will need to take appropriate measures to maximize distance between students in the room. Students cannot sit together in groups, and where chairs are moveable, students cannot move the chairs to be in close proximity to other students. In rooms with fixed seating, students need to spread out as much as possible. Faculty need to rotate students’ attendance by groups to increase distancing, and when distancing is still insufficient, the instructor should ask more students if they will attend remotely on alternating days.

How do I split my class if need be?

It is up to the instructor to make this decision. Faculty could assign the first half of the class based on alphabetical order of the last name to attend for Monday and Tuesday classes and the second half of the class to attend Wednesday and Thursdays. Instructors with Monday/Wednesday/Friday classes could divide the class into thirds using the same general sequencing. Ideally, students will have schedules that don’t bring them to campus for single classes on multiple days or leave students with awkward time blocks where they need to find a remote site while on campus, so if a student asks to exchange days, faculty are encouraged to be as flexible as possible.

What do I do if a student refuses to wear a face covering?

Everyone is required to wear a face cover while in ASU buildings and community spaces, including classrooms. There will be a limited supply of face coverings available for those who have forgotten to bring one. If a student asks why they are required, you can explain to the student that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends face coverings when distancing is difficult to maintain. COVID-19 spreads mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes and also if someone speaks or sings. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of those nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. Studies and evidence on infection control indicate these droplets usually travel around 6 feet. This is why we require face coverings in the classroom and other community spaces. If the student continues to refuse to wear a face covering, consult with your dean's office for possible referral to the Dean of Students. If the student engages in disruptive behavior, follow the process outlined in SSM 201–10: Instructor Withdrawal of a Student for Disruptive Classroom Behavior

 Should faculty wearing a face covering use a microphone?

The use of cloth face coverings or disposable medical masks is required. The use of a microphone may help to mitigate any muffling that may be caused by the face covering. Please use a microphone if you are planning on streaming a course for ASU Sync.

Will face shields be available for faculty?

Yes. But face shields need to be worn with a cloth face covering or disposable medical mask. New CDC guidance indicates that face shields alone do not provide the same level of protection as a cloth covering or medical mask and should not be substituted for other face coverings. For those who want their face showing, clear face coverings/masks can be made available. Individuals who have a medical condition or disability and are unable to wear a cloth face covering may engage in the ADA interactive process to identify a reasonable accommodation. Employees may initiate this process by contacting the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; students may contact the Disability Resource Center.

Do all classes need to be available via ASU Sync?

All classes need to be taught in person and via Zoom to accommodate students who are unable to attend in person due to health reasons, are international and face travel restrictions, or live elsewhere in the country and are not able to travel to campus. The only exceptions are those limited number of classes that have been approved to require in-person attendance.

What resources are available to assist faculty with course design?

To support ASU’s continued efforts to improve learning for all students, personalized professional learning opportunities are available to enhance remote teaching through ASU Sync. These resources provide faculty support through organizing and customizing professional learning based on pedagogical interests, level of technology experience and subject matter to meet the specific needs of the students.

Sync workshop, technology training webinars, teaching and Learning webinars, and virtual office hours with instructional designers are available. For details see: https://provost.asu.edu/sync/faculty

What technology will be in the classroom to facilitate with ASU Sync?

Technology options available in classrooms vary. Classes will at the minimum include high definition DSLR camera and a wireless instructor microphone. You can find specific details here

Can I use the Y grade for Satisfactory academic performance?

Yes, the Y (Satisfactory) grade is an option for all classes. The syllabus should include the conditions and processes students should follow when requesting the Y grade.

How should I handle students’ requests for accommodations?

Faculty should continue the flexible and compassionate approach we have taken with students concerning deadlines and other accommodations. Circumstances resulting from COVID-19 demand this, especially if students are in different time zones, experience an illness, are tending to their children or other family members, or have issues with employment and financial stability.

Can I hold office hours remotely?

Faculty can hold office hours in larger spaces such as conference rooms, outdoors and, if needed, remotely via Zoom.

How should faculty without designated office space hold office hours?

Faculty without designated office space have several options for in-person office hours. Chairs and directors could assign specific times for individuals to use shared meeting rooms, there are outdoor spaces available on each campus, and for appointments, the instructor and student could meet at a designated place and go for a walk or sit in the lobby, atrium or other nearby open space.

What should faculty consider when working with students with disabilities related to distancing and face coverings?

Critical to supporting students with disabilities is understanding the impact of the disability as it relates to your class. That is also true as it relates to COVID-19 accommodations. Disabilities may impact students differently, and may require individual responses depending on the circumstances. If accommodations to face covering and distancing are required, the Disability Resource Center will assist and provide guidance on whether accommodations are appropriate, and what alternatives can be made while still ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the campus community.

Can a student specify a modality at the start of the semester and change modalities during the course of the semester?

Yes. Any number of circumstances could change a student's choice of modality during the semester. For example, a student facing travel restrictions at the start of the semester may see those restrictions lifted during the fall and be able to return to campus and attend class in person. Other circumstances may be related to health and wellness. A student may become ill with the corona virus, the flu or a cold, and those students should not attend class in person. Students who have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 may need to self-isolate for a period of two weeks. Faculty should remain in contact with students and make appropriate accommodations as needed.

How should I clean the teaching station when I enter the room?

All classrooms will be supplied with a cleaning kit with surface wipes appropriate for computer equipment.

How do I request instructional assistants to help with ASU Sync?

Please reach out to your chair, director, or program supervisor.

What should I do if I am not feeling well on a day I am supposed to be teaching in person?

You should not conduct the class in person if you feel ill. However, there are several options. If you feel up to conducting the class remotely, you should let the students know that this class will be done via Zoom and have them all join remotely. If you don’t feel up to conducting the class, you could send out a project or exercise for them to do in lieu of class, find a substitute to teach either in person or via Zoom, or contact your supervisor to let him or her know that you’re not able to meet the class.

Will we move large-enrollment classes to ASU Sync or iCourses?

All courses with an enrollment of 100 or more students will either be moved to remote delivery or have the enrollment reduced by adding additional sections. If you teach a course with enrollment of 100 or more students, you will receive direction from your dean on the next steps.

Where do I pick up my microphone cover and writing kit?

As part of ASU’s enhanced safety measures, disposable microphone covers and individual ‘Writing Kits’ with an eraser and either 4 colored whiteboard markers or a box of chalk will be available for pick-up Monday through Thursday, 7am to 10pm and Friday, 7am to 6pm from these locations (please bring a list of classrooms that you will be teaching in for Fall to help identify the type of writing surface):

Downtown Phoenix: University Center (UCENT) 267
Poly: Academic Center (CNTR) 150
Tempe: Creativity Commons (CRTVC) Atrium and Lattie F. Coor Hall (COOR) 190
West: Fletcher Library (FLHLB) Atrium

Replenishment supplies may also be picked-up from these same locations once classes get underway.

The following answers are based on commonly asked questions by faculty members regarding technologies available while teaching via ASU Sync. Because some of these technologies may be unfamiliar to you, we have included the following descriptions that we encourage you to read to familiarize yourself with the tools.

Teaching Technology Descriptions



Zoom is a collaborative video conferencing tool. Zoom provides one consistent enterprise experience, providing online meetings, webinars, virtual conference rooms, and the next generation of voice and phone systems. Zoom simply and easily allows ASU students, faculty, and staff to collaborate, bringing flawless video, clear audio, and instant screen-sharing to potentially frustrating virtual meetings.


  • Zoom allows full broadcasting so that users can see the presenter, not just hear them or see slides.
  • Zoom also records all of the videos from multiple presenters and attendees.
  • Instructors can use Zoom to conduct virtual office hours where Students can join Zoom meetings in Canvas.
  • Explains concepts with a virtual white board and annotation.
  • Enables small group collaboration with break out rooms.
  • Captures student feedback with polling.
  • Allow facilitation of discussion through a chat.
  • Records presentations.


ASU Zoom Support website



Slack is an ASU licensed, enterprise-wide instant messaging tool that enables real-time communications and connections for collaborating, content sharing, learning, and more.  It can be used within a course as a work space for the whole class or groups within the class. Channels can be created  based on teams, projects, or even office locations. Members of a work space or organization can join and leave channels as needed.


  • Slack enables real-time communication that complements email and excels in group communication.
  • Slack is an all-encompassing application - thousands of productivity apps are integrated to enable stakeholders to send and receive messages, schedule, or initiate instant meetings, and polls.
  • Slack is a searchable platform
  • ASU offers training resources for and technical support if needed
  • Slack provides students with a deeper sense of connection to the ASU community and an easier path to accessing resources and support.


ASU Slack Support website

Google for Education


A free suite of communication and collaboration tools for learning anywhere, anytime, on any device.  Applications include Docs, Slides, Sheets, Drive, Jamboard, Gmail, and Forms.


  • Application suite is integrated with ASU’s authentication infrastructure.  Students already have accounts and can access the tools through MyASU.
  • Tools are affordable for students and likely to be used by them outside the classroom and in their future careers.  
  • Many students will be familiar with Google Apps having already used them in high school or community college.


Google for Education

Google for Education Teacher Center



Yellowdig is a social learning platform and student engagement tool that can be used within the Canvas learning environment. It enables students and instructors to easily share articles, websites, and multimedia that relate to their course content. 


  • Increased student engagement over using Canvas discussion boards
  • “Social media” UX approach may be more appealing to students
  • A formative assessment approach to evaluating student engagement and learning


ASU Yellowdig Support Information

Ally for Canvas


Ally is a tool for improving the accessibility of course documents. It has two main functions:

  1. Evaluate all documents and images that are uploaded to the course and, for those documents and images which do not comply with accessibility guidelines, lead the instructor through the steps needed to improve the accessibility of the document.
  2. Provide students with multiple formats of the original document so they can select the one that best fits their unique needs.


  • Ally improves the student experience by providing alternative and accessible formats of uploaded course documents.


Ally Overview

Ally for LMS Help for Instructors

Ally for ASU Canvas LMS - ASU Knowledge Base

A self-paced interactive tutorial



Screencast-O-Matic is a screencasting and video editing software tool that can be launched directly from a browser. The software has been widely used in the education sector to support video creation for classrooms online or in-person, bi-directional student assessments, lecture capture, and student video assignments.


  • Film videos to be able to share class content on the web with students all over the world
  • Easy video and audio recording with advanced editing tools for professional videos
  • Post quick recordings to answer questions outside of class
  • Record your lectures and PowerPoint presentations on your computer, and post them online for the students to watch BEFORE class, so that the class time can be spent in discussion.


Getting Started with Screencast-O-Matic
Screencast-O-Matic tutorials
Additional resources



MediaAMP is ASU’s centrally supported video and audio management and delivery system. The service enables faculty and staff to upload, manage, and deliver audio and video content in support of University initiatives, including teaching and learning activities, promotional messaging and sponsored projects.


  • Host all of your important video and audio content all in one place
  • Integrated into Canvas for easy uploading and content management


ASU support website

ASU Library Reading Lists


Reading Lists are a service integrated with Canvas that enables the linking and managing course materials like books, videos, articles, publications, personal content and external website links. Reading Lists are curated to make course materials readily accessible  for students inside Canvas. ASU Library Reading Lists make it easy and engaging to create, access, and manage course reading lists. Instructors can build, maintain, and share resource lists that include all material types, librarians can provide  resources more efficiently and scale up to support more courses, and students can access all course materials in one


  • Reading lists can be reused from term to term
  • Instructors can easily search for, add, edit and delete content from Reading Lists
  • Readings lists provide stable access through renewed and licensed library content
  • Student engagement with the materials can be tracked through analytics
  • Instructors, Course Designers and librarians can collaboratively create and process reading lists for students
  • Instructors can associate reading lists to multiple courses 


ASU Library Support Document



Turnitin is a plagiarism checker applied to ASU Canvas in order to prevent academic dishonesty among student submissions. Instructors enable the tool on an assignment, then it scans the students' submitted work and flags the instructor if any part of the document is suspected to be plagiarized. The Originality Report highlights any problem areas and can be used to determine if a  match is acceptable or not.


  • Educates students on identifying and acknowledging other authors’ work
  • Educates students on correct referencing  and quoting techniques
  • Detects if students have plagiarized in part or in full
  • Compares against other institutions’ submissions
  • Instructors may exclude sources that are not considered plagiarism (eg. bibliography quotations and small sources).


How to use Turnitin in Canvas

iClicker Reef


iClicker is a student response system which enables Instructors to assess student knowledge, provide immediate and ongoing feedback; and encourage students to participate through questions and answers during class. iClicker Reef, is optimized and designed for mobile devices, allowing students to respond to polling questions using any smart device with a web browser or through an iOS or Android app.


  • Great tool for increasing active learning in your course
  • It’s simple to create quizzes, either in advance of class, or on the spot
  • No hardware required.  Students can install the app on their phone or access it through a web browser.
  • Can be used for formative assessment activities
  • Polling sessions are accessible afterwards for a refresher or revision
  • Faculty can export grades to a spreadsheet


Technology FAQs

What Zoom link will my student use to attend class?

Students access the Zoom link for each course by signing into MyASU and clicking the “Attend via Sync” button on their schedule. By default, this button will link to the the instructor’s Zoom PMI (Personal Meeting ID). This link can be modified to use a different Zoom meeting by following these instructions.

Will Yellowdig be provided university-wide this fall?

Yes, Yellowdig is now available to all faculty members at the unviersity. This ASU Yellowdig KnowledgeBase article will get you started.

Will RPNow be provided university-wide this fall?

Access to RPNow is course dependent. Read this guide to select which is best for you: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1N4BY32wkYnLhx0mkn2evFPfGYwQNdNoCnYy8_W0zVT0/edit?usp=sharing

Will Respondus still be available university-wide in the fall?

Yes, Respondus will still be available university-wide in the fall.

Is RPNow better than Respondus?

While both are proctoring tools, they are used under different circumstances. This guide can help you select which is best for you: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1N4BY32wkYnLhx0mkn2evFPfGYwQNdNoCnYy8_W0zVT0/edit?usp=sharing

Will Playposit be provided university-wide this fall?

Playposit is currently being pursued. An announcement will be made when the technology is available.

Is ASU no longer providing TurningPoint? If we can't use TurningPoint, what do you recommend we use instead?

TurningPoint is being replaced at ASU. The new software, which will be announced soon, will be available for any course beginning in the Fall semester."

Do we have a technology similar to mashme.io available to us? If not, could we?

No. The Learning Futures Collaboratory is exploring immersive learning solutions. Check their website for future announcements and to learn more about activities in this area.

Will ASU pay for "Poll Everywhere" for faculty members?

A new student response system will be available for the fall semester. An annoucement will be coming soon.

Can you please send me a list of technologies that will be available to me in the fall as soon as possible?

See the faculty tool kit on the ASU Sync website for more information.

Will there be training on how to use the new technology in the classrooms?

Yes, a calendar listing training classes is available on the ASU Sync faculty toolkit website. In addition, the site has links to self-paced tutorials and other information resources.

Will Zoom be installed on computers in lab rooms?

Labs will use a portable Zoom streaming solution. For more information about Zoom Classroom technology, please view this presentation.

Can I use the classroom projector to show the Zoom whiteboard to the in-class students?

Yes, you will be able to project your Zoom whiteboard.

What classroom equipment can I use (projector, board, etc.)?

Here is an overview of what will be in place in each Sync classroom variation: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1DJ-TzzVYPKta8aMybTUBla1K1BKK8gUT3RxanklhmzM/edit?usp=sharing

How can we create a class with more interaction for international students or those in a different time zone who must attend classes asynchronously and watch recorded lectures?

We have created a document which may help. Strategies for Remote Teaching Across Time Zones.

With the live classroom and ASU Sync, will support be available for setup and recording of the class through Zoom (or other software)?

Yes, a complete list of supported Zoom classrooms is available for your review.

Will contingent faculty be required to provide their own technology?

Please reach out to your chair, director or program supervisor for options.

How will we know what kind of technology is provided in the classroom in which we will be teaching?

Identify your assigned classroom on the list of Zoom-capable classrooms, then review this presentation for a definition of classroom Zoom technology options.

What recommendations are there for faculty members who are looking to design an ASU Sync experience that is as universal as possible?

To support ASU’s continued efforts to improve learning for all students, personalized professional learning opportunities are available to enhance remote teaching through ASU Sync. These resources provide faculty support through organizing and customizing professional learning based on pedagogical interests, level of technology experience and subject matter to meet the specific needs of the students. Sync workshops, technology training webinars, teaching and learning webinars, and virtual office hours with instructional designers are available. For details see: https://provost.asu.edu/sync/faculty

Does the university have the bandwidth for all of these Zoom classes?


Will a student or staff member be available to monitor the chat, assist with classroom facilitation and provide technical support for all classes delivered through Zoom?

Support for technical issues can be obtained by contacting the ASU Experience Center. For in classroom assistance with class management, please reach out to your chair, director or program supervisor.

How can we do a poll that includes both remote students and in-person students at the same time?

Zoom polling or Slack polling options can be used. However, the in-person students will need to have access to the software you chose on their personal devices in order to participate.

Will the cameras being installed in classrooms enable me to view the class if I am teaching from an off-site location?

It depends on the classroom in which your course is scheduled. Identify your assigned classroom on the list of Zoom-capable classrooms. Classroom type "A" has technology built in to enable remote viewing of the audience. Classroom type "C" can be reconfigured to enable audience viewing. Please review this presentation for a definition of Zoom classroom technology options.

Will laptops be provided to students again?

If a student is not able to personally finance the equipment you require to attend class via ASU Sync, ASU has a laptop and Wi-Fi hotspot checkout program available through the ASU Library.

How can I enable in-person and remote undergraduates' interactions with each other without the use of laptops?

Strategies for student interaction and group work are available on the Sync faculty toolkit website.

Will Zoom polling work with some students being remote and others being in-person during a class?

Yes, as long as students have access to the Zoom room.

Are course contents and lectures copyrighted materials? If yes, how do we deal with streaming classes online?

The ASU Library has created a site for copyright resources.

How can I record my class for international students or those in a different time zone who must attend class asynchronously and watch recorded lectures?

Zoom sessions may be recorded and the playback link can be embedded in your Canvas course for students to view. Recordings stored in Zoom are available for 120 days. They can also be be downloaded and saved to your desktop, or a more permanent storage and delivery streaming solution such as ASU's MediaAMP platform.

Can the university provide funding for me to purchase a new teaching computer?

Please reach out to your chair, director or program supervisor for options.

24/7 support from the ASU Experience Center

The ASU Experience Center is open 24/7, 365 days a year. If you have questions or need support, get in touch now.