Information for instructional faculty

This page includes a compilation of important information provided to faculty for online/remote instruction for Spring 2020. The information is broken into three parts:

  • Information that may be helpful right away for your online classes (including ongoing instructional support, meeting your classes live, proctoring exams, and testing for students registered with Disability Services)
  • Information to support your students (including staying in contact, FERPA, the CARE team, and other services)
  • Information for the end of the semester (including information about final exams, entering final grades, incompletes, and the grading system for classes)


Ongoing Instructional Support

  • As we resume our classes online, do not hesitate to reach out for additional support. Instructional Design and Accessibility is ready to help. They can help you deliver the content you were planning to deliver as well as support you in developing new material you want to create for later the semester. Review the great resources online and also consider the step-by-step guide they developed to help create course content to keep your students engaged. Several training labs also are available every week.
  • Whenever you have technological trouble, there is a strong support staff to help you fix glitches.  They want to help you do your best. They can be reached at

Synchronous Class Meetings

  • If you are meeting synchronously (live) with your class, it is important to stick to your scheduled course time.  Students may have other faculty who are also expecting them “in class” during their scheduled time.
  • Consider recording your zoom sessions and posting those for students to view later who are unable to join you live due to new home/work obligations. 

Online Proctoring Services

  • Proctoring exams can be a challenge. The MRC has several options to improve exam integrity that do not involve proctoring. A comprehensive overview of proctoring options also is available.
  • Respondus Lockdown Browser is the recommended tool for online proctoring. This tool locks down a student’s browser (but not any extra devices they might have) and provides AI monitoring through a webcam of the student taking the exam.  Exams must be offered in online format.  Similar to ProctorU, it flags irregularities for later review by a faculty member. Additional information is available online at:
  • ProctorU: This service likely will not be available prior to final exams. ProctorU provides AI monitoring for online exams that flags irregularities. The cost is $10 per student per exam.  You must have permission from the Dean to cover the cost of these exams. As a reminder, the cost of the test cannot be passed on to students. 

 Testing with Disability Services

  • Students registered with ODS should not have to pay for their test to be proctored.  The plan is to have Testing Services proctor the test via zoom or skype.

Zoom bombing

  • Zoom Bombing is when an uninvited guest joins a zoom meeting and disrupts the event, usually with offensive content.  This is a particular risk for events that are promoted in a public way (like recruitments events that cast a wide net). 
  • If you experience a Zoom Bombing event, please report the incident using the Institutional Equity and Compliance Report form. The Compliance office is helping to track these incidents and manage any necessary institutional response.



Student Care

  • If you are not meeting synchronously with your students each week, consider ways to touch base with them regularly. If you wait until the next assignment or test is due and they don’t submit work, it may be too late to get them back on track if they are struggling. A live Q&A session or a short email asking for a reply is a great way to keep students engaged.
  • If you encounter students in need or distress, please submit a CARE report. CARE Team is ready to serve students in distress during these trying times. To help address concerns regarding emergency assistance and self-care resources, share the below link to help connect individuals to resources in our community.
  • If students are struggling academically, GEEKs, the Math lab, the Writing center, and tutoring services have all moved online.

Success Coaches

  • You may have students who are now in need of additional academic support and coaching. Success Coaches are available in each college to provide support for course engagement, time management, navigating classes, online study skills, accountability, etc. Critical concerns such as mental health, recent layoffs, food and housing insecurity, should be submitted to our Care Team (see above). 

Sharing Academic Information with Students (protecting Student FERPA rights)

  • Blackboard is the ideal mode to share information about grades with students.
  • Zoom meetings between the instructor and the individual student can include discussions about grades and academic progress.
  • Emails to students at their assigned email address can include explanations and information related to grades and academic progress.
  • Phone conversations with students are allowed, but verification of identity is difficult. Use a phone call if it is necessary to be accessible to a student to answer their questions or address their concerns. Use caution in sharing specific academic information because of the difficulty of verification of identity.




You may be asked by a student if they can take an incomplete in your course for this spring. This decision is yours, but please see the notes from the Registrar when considering the request.

  • Use caution when considering granting Incompletes. It pushes work down the road for you and for students. Giving an incomplete solely because classes moved online (without requiring some other extenuating circumstances) could bring a lot more requests for incompletes your way.
  • Remember you have the ability to adjust the Incomplete Final grade.  The grade of F is the default grade if no grade change is submitted before one year.  If a student, for instance, would receive a C without submitting further work, you could change the Incomplete Final Grade from F to C. The C would be the grade rolled to their record at the end of one year, you would not be required to take any further action. If they did complete the work, you’d submit a change a grade via the Grade Change link in myWSU. 
  • Do  not give an incomplete if the student is going to need to repeat the course. Repeating a class doesn’t remove the original attempt from the student’s transcript. An Incomplete will still turn into an F (or whatever default grade you enter) and will show on the transcript. A repeat of the course will replace the previous grade in the student’s GPA, but the original course will remain on the transcript.

You can review the catalog detail regarding incompletes at these links:

UG -

GR -


Finals Schedule

  • The  final exam schedule has not changed.  Faculty teaching courses that began in-person and are administering a final exam at a specific time are expected to utilize the day/time specified for that course on the final exam schedule. 
  • Courses that have been online courses throughout the semester can schedule their final exams at the discretion of the instructor, but they should still take place during finals week.
  • If your final is a “take-home” or a final assignment that isn’t administered at a specific time, be sure to allow adequate time for grading to meet the May 19 grade submission deadline. 
  • All courses/finals, including online, are subject to catalog policy requiring students to take no more than 2 final exams in one day. Instructors with questions regarding this policy can contact the Office of the Registrar at 

Change of grading mode (Credit/No Credit vs Pass/Fail)

  • Faculty will enter grades at the end of the semester as usual following the traditional scale.
  • WSU is considering a process where students can opt-in to change the class grading system to Credit/No Credit at the end of the semester if they feel that would be appropriate. This would not change normal grade entry but would convert the grade after it posted. The details are under consideration and an announcement will be made soon.
  • Although some universities are choosing to convert all classes from letter graded courses to pass/fail (credit/no credit) courses, WSU has decided not to implement this change.  There are several factors shaping this decision:
    • Although there will be some students who will struggle to finish the semester strong in this new learning environment and would prefer to avoid a low letter grade by getting a “pass” instead,  there are also students who have worked hard for their good grades and would not be pleased to have that hard work recorded as a “pass.”  Establishing a fair way to handle these would be challenging at best.
    • Some accredited programs may not be allowed to offer pass/fail grades based on their accreditation policies.
    • Pass/Fail (credit/no credit) classes on a transcript can be problematic for admission into a number graduate programs.
    • In order to convert classes to a pass/fall modality, the registrar’s office would need to manually unenroll students, change every course to pass/fail, and manually re-enroll every student in every class.   

Submitting Failing Grades

Please note the below information and be sure you are entering the correct grade and only entering a Last Date of Attendance when it is required/appropriate.

  • With classes going online, you’ll be looking at it as a last day of educationally-related activity more than before. The date you’d use will likely be the last date the student interacted with you or with an online chat, assignment, or exam. It is still up to you to determine what that date is based on the structure of your class/instruction.
  • Faculty can no longer submit the specific failing grades of F, U, NCR or NBG.  Instead, they submit one of three failing grades in each category. 

Final grade student should receive (and will see):

If student neverattended class/logged in or participated online , enter:

If student attended class/participated online for entire course and earned failing grade, enter:

If student started but stopped attending/participating online and failed course, enter:


















Do not enter Last Date of Attendance

Do not enter Last Date of Attendance

You must enter Last Date of Attendance