COVID-19 Updates

Frequently Asked Questions for Faculty

TECHNOLOGY Related Questions


What grading options do students have in Spring 2020? 

The State has approved the use of Excused Withdrawal (EW) and Pass/No Pass (P/NP) grading options for any class due to COVID-19.  The college will not include “P," "NP," and “EW” grade notations in the calculation of academic progress or consider them in probation or dismissal procedures. However, students should contact the Financial Aid Office for additional information about how an “NP” might affect their financial aid status. 

Before choosing the P/NP option, students should consult with a counselor and/or program director about whether or not the P/NP grading basis will impact the transferability of any particular course. The Spring 2020 Student Grading Options - Students document contains additional information for students about the EW and P/NP option.

What can I do if I think a student should receive an Excused Withdrawal (EW) and it is after the instructor-initiated drop date?

If you believe that a student should receive an Excused Withdrawal (EW) but the instructor-initiated drop deadline has passed, you should assign an “FW” grade in RostersPlus.

The Admissions & Records Office will replace the “FW” you assigned with an “EW” on the student transcript within 15-20 business days after the grade has been assigned.

The Spring 2020 Student Grading Options - Instructor document contains additional information for instructors about student grading options and deadlines.

What if a student self-reports that they are sick or that they may have been around someone who might or has tested positive for COVID-19?

Immediately call health services to report a possible case of community transmission.
Refer the student to our student health services and/or Elizabeth Miller (

Is there instruction the week after spring break?


The week after Spring Break, (March 23-29, 2020) is a NON-INSTRUCTIONAL WEEK. Think of it like a flex week to develop and refine remote teaching strategies. We are asking that you do not engage in instruction during the prep week. In this hectic transitional time we want to be as clear and unified with our instructions to students as possible. We ask that all faculty honor the non-instructional week and do not ask students to participate in remote instruction and/or learning until March 30.

Where will classes be conducted during an emergency campus closure?

Courses will be conducted in Cerritos College’s learning management system, Canvas. During the temporary emergency period, will allow you to maintain contact with your students, share course content, conduct group discussion, send/receive assignments and hold office hours. Canvas includes several integrated tools that can also support instruction such as ConferZoom.

  • When do I need to be logged in to Canvas to teach my class?

    There are no specific times that you must be logged in to Canvas. You do need to log in frequently to communicate with your students, provide course content, facilitate discussions and provide feedback on assessment.

  • Can I teach my class “live” (synchronous) remotely?

    Synchronous instruction is an option, but it is not required as students may not be able to access the appropriate technology during the specified time.  If you do choose to teach “live” using ConferZoom, it is a best practice to NOT make attendance necessary or grade on attendance. Record and post the session in Canvas so that students who could not attend can still access the instructional content.

  • How and when will I hold Office Hours?

    You can hold your scheduled office hours using ConferZoom or the Chat Room. This tool is a virtual “office” where students from any of your sections can visit during the specified hours.  Just like in-person, these sessions are “walk-in” and optional.  See the ConferZoom quick start guide to learn how to use this tool.

Am I required to use Canvas and/or Zoom?

We encourage you to use Canvas and/or zoom for your courses. This is because Canvas and Zoom are tools that most California Community Colleges use which, can make it easier for students to navigate instead of using a new technology tool. As an added bonus, it is easy to demonstrate contact within Canvas and Zoom.

That being said we are not requiring you use Canvas and Zoom for instruction. There are multiple video platforms available to record content for students (Camtasia, YouTube, etc.). If you do not plan to use Canvas we are requesting you document how you intend to attempt to meet appropriate contact hours for the course. At the end of the term, we would also ask that you revise your plan to demonstrate what was done to ensure you met the course outcomes and contact hours.

If I don’t use Canvas what kind of plan do I need to document course outcomes and contact hours?

This can be a simple bulleted document answering the following questions.

  1. What technologies you will be using and how you will be using them
  2. How do you intend to communicate with your students on a regular basis
  3. How will students turn in work and/or tests/quizzes
  4. How will you return work, tests, quizzes and keep course records

Please keep a copy of this plan and the end of term plan. These will be used if the State requires additional documentation to secure funding. You may also send the plan to your Dean/Division Office.

  • What if I get sick or cannot continue teaching even for remote instruction.

    Notify your division dean, who will work with you to provide coverage for your sections.

  • What can I do to help students prepare?

    • Establish how you will communicate with them, and outline any new expectations including that class will continue and they should plan to keep up with the course work.

    • Ask students to set (or review) their Canvas Communication Preferences immediately so they are sure to get all course communications. See recommended settings. Send a test Announcement via Canvas now and ask all students to respond.

    • Invite them to think about how they would maintain their engagement with the course and stay on schedule. Have them let you know if they will have challenges participating in your class remotely.

  • Adapt your classroom policies regarding absences, deadlines, and make-up work for students who are sick.

    This is a public health emergency that is evolving quickly and unpredictably, and we all need to be prepared to adapt our attendance, assignment, and grading practices to meet the needs of our students.

  • Student Attendance

    There are no specific times that students must be logged in to Canvas.  Student “attendance” is based on their asynchronous participation in class discussions, activities and completion of graded assessments. Check in with students who have not logged in at all or are not completing assignments or participating in discussions, or other assigned activities.

  • How do I handle accommodations for students with disabilities in Canvas?

    Start with a conversation with the student planning how best to support their learning, and any accommodations. Please contact DSPS now to plan how best support students who require academic accommodations.

  • I don’t know where to start or what to do. Help!

    Some great campus resources are the CTX page and the canvas shell for remote teaching resources. The Canvas Shell is maintained by our awesome colleagues Lynn Serwin and Janet Mitchell Lambert from English. They have included a Q & A thread that they will be watching and responding. GIANT KUDOS TO LYNN SERWIN AND JANET MITCHELL LAMBERT! (Link:
    • The CTX will also be offering professional development during prep week. This will predominantly be webinar type sessions.

    • We will also be identifying faculty who will have “drop in” availability for some more one on one training opportunities.

    • Shawna Baskette and the CTX also have a lot of amazing resources on the CTX remote teaching resources webpage (

  • I teach a lab based class, does any of this apply to me?


    Gavin Newsom’s Stay at Home order all instruction will be moved into an online format. We are working with the Chancellor’s Office, the Governor, and other appropriate bodies to identify virtual lab type activities that could be used as a substitute for in person lab courses.

    We are encouraging folks who are teaching lab classes to move what they can online immediately and to continue talks with their dean, the office of Academic Affairs, CCFF Leadership, and Faculty Senate President on potential options for remote instruction for lab courses.

  • Will the library and success center be open?

    Yes, but both departments are moving their services online. The Success Center will resume tutoring services online starting March 30. Details will be posted by the end of the week at the Success Center web site. The Library will provide services to students and faculty online starting March 30. Details will be posted at the Library web site.

Information current as of 3/24/20


How can I get media captioned?

If you would like to have media captioned please email Bernice Watson at In an effort to reduce the campus footprint, she will be working from home and will not have access to the traditional media ticket system.

What if we (or our students) don’t have the appropriate technology?

INTERNET-The FCC has created the Keep America Connected Pledge

The Keep Americans Connected Pledge reads as follows: Given the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on American society, [[Company Name]] pledges for the next 60 days to:

(1) Not terminate service to any residential or small business customers because of their inability to pay their bills due to the disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic;

(2) Waive any late fees that any residential or small business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic; and

(3) Open its Wi-Fi hotspots to any American who needs them.

Encourage students to check with their local providers to see what resources are being provided.

WEBCAM-Zoom allows you to participate in a synchronous meeting without webcam. You are able to use the chat, or microphone tool to participate without a video function. Additionally, creating a zoom meeting generates a weblink AND a phone number that students can call into from any phone (smart or not).

Proctorio does require the use of a webcam. Another option is to not require electronic proctoring during this term.

LAPTOP OR COMPUTER- Many of our students will be using phones to access Canvas and/or course content. Make sure to keep designs simple and instructions clear and direct. If a student discloses they are unable to continue in the course because of lack of resources please confer with your dean to see if there are resources available to assist the student.

What if a student needs help using Canvas or ZoomConfer?

Encourage your students to let you know if they are experiencing difficulty using the remote instructional tools.  Point students to our technical support website, which includes guides and tutorials for Canvas and ConferZoom. You can also direct them to the 24/7 Student Canvas Hotline, or the ConferZoom support site.

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Last Update: 4/30/2020