Critical & Creative Thinking
Program Coordinator Handbook
Table of Contents of Student Handbook (plus indented annotations *)
The information in this handbook updates and supplements the latest Graduate Bulletin entry for CCT. It is arranged in an order that takes you through the sequence of issues you may have from when you are first interested in the program to when you are ready to complete your studies.
If you are reading a printed version of this handbook there will be some slightly mysterious text that indicates links on the web-version to material located elsewhere in the handbook.
* Always refer students to this handbook even if you answer their immediate question. That way they get used to the organization of the handbook - there are few questions that are not addressed herein. The online version of the handbook is always the most up-to-date but if students want a printed version, there is a link on the home page to a pdf version of the handbook that can be printed out.
Overview of Program
Joining the CCT Program
Taking single courses before applying or matriculating (= registering for a "non-degree course")
- Welcome letter to new or prospective students
* send this to students by email or mail as soon as we admit them
* Or send this email, which has links to key items
- Programs of Study
- Master of Arts (33 credits), with student-defined specialty areas such as:
"creative thinking at work," "science in a changing world," "gifted and talented education," "critical and creative thinking in literature/arts/music," "dialogue and collaboration in organizational change." Areas of specialization may be constructed through cooperation with other UMass Boston graduate programs, such as Instructional Design, Special Education, Public Policy, and Dispute Resolution.
- Graduate Certificate (15 credits), which accommodates general studies or the following targetted themes or foci:
- Students may begin with the certificate and apply to transfer later to the Master's program, or vice versa.
* Starting spring '05 students in other Masters programs who have taken CCT courses for their Master's degree can also count them for a CCT certificate.
* form to be used; Distribute signed forms to faculty so they have them at the first class and put some in an envelope on your door
Application Procedures, Info, Tuition & Fees
Resources and Assistance:
Notes for Newly Admitted Students
- CCT Community Directory |
Information Form for CCT Community Directory |
Registering for courses |
Student advising |
Transfer of credit for graduate courses taken elsewhere or at UMB before matriculating | Preapproval of graduate courses taken at UMB after admission but before matriculation
* Ask GA to persist in asking new students for info for community directory OR to extract info from applications.
* Complete transfer of credit forms soon after the student has matriculated for any UMB or outside courses taken before matriculation.
- Profiles of CCT Faculty (with rooms & office hours)
* Ask program assistant to track down this information soon after semester starts. It takes persistence, e.g, visiting the faculty members in person.
- The Program Coordinator is the faculty member who directs and oversees all aspects of the program. (The Program Coordinator is the same person as the Program Director or GPD = Graduate Program Director.)
- Program Ofice email@example.com, Wheatley Hall, Second Floor, Room 143-09, University of Massachusetts Boston, 100 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, MA 02125-3393 ( Directions)
Moving along through the programs of study
Options and rationale for pre-capstone courses and capstone synthesis
- Course planning, including worksheet for students to submit.
* Persist in asking students for this info and for updates, insert this info into the database, and use to: a) make projections of future enrollments; and b) register current students on-line before the end of the pre-registration period if they haven't done so themselves - this saves them late fees & reduces chance of sections being cancelled by the admin
- Course Descriptions, Foundation Courses, Electives, and final Required Courses (with syllabi linked to website)
* Get syllabis as attachments from faculty at the start of the semester, make a copy for the C&I departmental secretary, and upload onto the CCT website.
- Scheduled course offerings
- A set of steps to prepare CCT students to complete a synthesis during their final semester (or very soon after)
Explain these during entrance interviews
- Research and Study Competencies to develop before the final Required Courses
* Promote these and, in conjunction with a possible new core course, "Research & Writing for Reflective Practice," move them through governance approval.
- Academic Policies and Procedures (on leave, incompletes, etc.)
Program Fee must be paid for students to keep their file active in semesters when they are taking a course. Program coordinator "registers" you for this before add/drop date; afetr then, submit form and check including late fee.
* During first week of classes, check who is not registered for a course and check whether they are OK to be "registered" for this (as course CAS600). Otherwise they'll get charged a late fee.
* Make sure students really finish the practicum before taking synthesis.
Forms and information related to the steps involved in synthesis projects
* Convene meeting of synthesizers at the end of previous semester to get them started in advance of their synthesis semester.
Reflecting on Your Developing Practice (during the program and at the end)
* Transfer Credit forms--used when a student enters CCT and needs courses transferred from other graduate classes taken at UMass and other institutions prior to admission.
* Non-Degree Registration forms--used when a student who is not in the program enrolls in a CCT course. All current CCT students receive priority when signing up for a particular course. Non-degree students should only be admitted after current CCT students have had adequate time to register or if there are many spare places in the course.
* Program Fee forms-Any semester a student is not taking a CCT course, this form must be filled out, and the fee paid.
* Leave of Absence form--used when a student has serious circumstances and needs to take a semester or more off.
* Application for Graduation forms--used when a student is approaching graduation (deadlines: approx. March 1 & Nov. 3). This form requires the student to fill out their courses and grades to show proof of completion.
Time line of things to do
Before fall semester starts
* Arrange new student orientation/ community gathering
Get students to register for courses, especially course with low enrollment. Ask anyone doing an indep. study to do so through a course with low enrollment.
Submit changes to Spring courses, state-side
* See previous semesters' schedules for models. Coordinate science-related course offerings with COSMIC. Link to CCT website as soon as draft is ready, then revise as changes come through. Submit to C&I chair, but keep copy and use this when asked to input schedule manually by altering printout of previous year's schedule. Be careful that the two submissions match. In fact, don't wait to be asked - go to Chair and/or Ann Carbone to ensure that the CCT schedule gets submitted to registrar.
Appoint a Certificate assistant, who gets paid with funds that have to be transfered from CCDE (Tony Holmes) to GCOE (Ann carbone). This person should
respond to online inquiries and lead the alum group in promoting the certificate.
Start of fall semester
a. Special (non-matriculated) student forms
* to get permission for courses. If the course is not full and the student has an undergraduate degree, they can be admitted to the course with the advising office administrative assistant signing for the CCT coordinator. See also link for students
* make sure the names are forwarded to Bob Bobek so a tuition waiver is processed. (GAs should ask at Graduate Studies about these forms, and keep checking back if they aren't ready when you first ask; check with Liz at the GCOE front desk to ask her to forward your check by mail; and alert Department of C&I if no check arrives.)
* Appointments may have to be reestablished each semester, even if the appointment is made for the whole year.
* Training should impress these goals of assisting with CCT Work
a. Streamlined, efficient operations given the constraints on resources, facilities, and staffing.
b. Recruit new students and in other ways expand and sustain the wider CCT community.
c. Support faculty initiatives, such as the CCT Network, that extend the impact of CCT in the wider world.
d. Use empathy and respect for others who are (also) stretched many different ways, need assistance, and get frazzled or depressed if they do things themselves because they can't rely on getting help
b. Key Requests
should be submitted for new GAs and faculty. The forms should be signed by the Assistant Dean and sent to Facilities. Look out for pick-up notices in the campus mail, and give them to the relevant parties so they can go and collect their keys in the administration building. On CCT computer keep a record of who has keys to what rooms.
c. Office hours and CCT class times
should be gotten from faculty teaching CCT courses (including Philosophy 501 and Psychology 650), typed, and posted on the CCT door, notice board, and faculty webpage on website.
d. List of current CCT students
(Status 1) with contact phone numbers, e-mail addresses, and advisors should be output from the database, tidied up, sent to all CCT faculty.
An electronic copy should be got from faculty teaching CCT courses, preferably by email attachment which should be filed in the appropriate computer folder under Course Material. Make three paper copies, file one and pass on two to the SOCI secretary and file another in CCT files. Forward the electronic copy to Peter Taylor to be linked to the CCT website.
f. E-mail aliases
for status 1, 2, 3 and 4 and status 7 should be generated afresh at the start of the semester from the database (excluding people not wanting mailings) in order of the people's last names. Additions and deletions can be made by hand in between times.
g. The CCT Forum
the official "Recognized Professional Association" (RPA) of CCT Students, organized by the Graduate Student Assembly (GSA), part of the office of Student Life (7-7950) so that funds can be applied for events that the Forum might wish to host and for co-sponsoring CCT events. One of the GAs should take the lead in this and enlist the others as officers. Keep and eye and ear out for notices and orientations. Typically, the RPA application must be submitted very near the beginning of each semester with a list of officers, members, and a $10 fee. Visit Student Life very early in the semester to learn about the required orientation meetings - the people designated as the President and Treasure in the officers' list will need to attend one mandatory training at the beginning of each semester. If this does not happen, the RPA can be deactivated for the semester and funds will not be granted or available. As of 2008, the RPA advisor in the Student Activities office is Chuck Henriques, 7-7948, CC 3408 - he must be consulted for distribution of all funds (and any other space request/planning arrangements that for official CCT Forum events.
h. Course rosters
should be copied and sent immediately to the CCT faculty involved. Input into the database (in lower case - see record AA2 for codes) the courses that CCT students are registered for.
(These may be being phased out now that faculty access course rosters online.)
i. Input registration
When class lists are made available (via CCT slot at Graduate Records) input students' enrollment into their database records, then forward class lists to the instructors.
j. Program Fee for non-registering students
To keep one's student status active when not registered for courses, a program fee of $175 must be paid. If not paid before end of add/drop a late fee of $50 is charged. This is now covered by the Program Coordinator "registering" the students in a dummy course; the Bursar then charges them. Get permission to do this from students who have not registered by the start of semester.
k. Pay for part-timers
The Assistant Dean is ultimately responsible is responsible for getting part-time faculty and GAs on the payroll. This involves getting a contract to the faculty to sign and getting it back. The GA or the GPD may need to inquire with her if the checks don't start to come through -- it's important that part-timers are as well looked after as we can manage so we don't lose their goodwill and involvement. Sometimes checks get sent to the GCOE and need to be redirected to the relevant home address. Alert GPD as soon as you hear of any delay.
Early in semester
Application for Graduation: Students need to complete and submit these forms by deadlines: approx. Nov. 3 (for Dec. degree or certificate) & March 1 (for May/June or August degree or certificate)
Spring courses, Cont. Ed.
* Cont. Ed. usually sends a list to be confirmed or amended - ask for it if it doesn't come by first week of semester.
Winter courses, submit to Cont. Ed. under C&I chair's signature
* CCT616, Dialogue Processes
Summer courses, submit to Cont. Ed. under C&I chair's signature
* CCT618 - check that all the instructors want to keep teaching this and the dates work. Abby Yanow serves as lead instructor and inputs grades at the end. 37% of salary for lead instructor; 31.5% for each of other two.
CCT601, 619 - check that Janet Farrell-Smith wants to teach these; schedule them for the 3 weeks that CCT618 runs
Ask Tony Holmes how much CCDE will transfer to GCOE for courses CCT has offered through CCDE (roughly $200/course). These funds are now deposited in CCT's own ESS account and can be budgeted for readers, CCT events, and various dues.
Later in semester
Transcript printout from Grad. Registrar. Use these to:
a. Record in db whether a student finished the course - change lower case f, sp, su, w to upper case F, SP, SU, W
Solicit applications for Delores Gallo fund prize
b. Identify students who have fallen off the registrar's system - probably didn't pay program fee - contact them
c. Identify discrepancy between no. of courses finished and degree credits - this means a course taken before matriculation needs to be transferred in - submit the form for this.
d. Look for problems - low grade point averages - and bring up if necessary at CCT faculty meeting
Produce single sheet to advertise course offerings in advance of registration period.
Arrange rooms for next semester in Psychology when needed for synthesis, practicum, and evaluation courses
End of fall semester
* Inform registrar and Assistant Dean and include on CCT website
Make sure all current students register during registration period. Before that period ends, register any laggards according to the course plans they submitted and inform them that you have done so, but they can change at any time.
Meeting to get spring synthesizers started. See steps
Get fall synthesizers through final steps - see final steps
See above for Before spring semester starts |
Start of spring semester |
later in semester |
Decide on book prize winner and submit citation to Graduate studies
Get international students to apply for tuition waiver through Grad. Studies
Posting of GA openings and Hiring GAs
Positions should be posted on the HR website (Grad. Studies does this if you send them the form), on notice boards around the GCOE, and by email to all current and incoming CCT students
Bound syntheses should be stored in CCT closet and sent to Curriculum Library, abstracts sent electronically input into db, & self-assessments filed
Make Explicit agreements w/ any students for synthesis completion after June 1
Messages on voicemail & email; arrangement w/ Certificate assistant to continue covering email inquiries if they owe hours
Admissions advising and processing is the big issue to keep on top of during summer
Also publicity and logistical support for summer courses
Other office work
Computer records and other databases
a. Database of students, alums, and others in the wider CCT community.
* Each person is a "record" in the filemaker database "CCT students and others." The information about them goes in "fields," which are explained in the dummy records under the names Aa1 and Aa2. When you update a record with new address, phone or e-mail, remember to update the date in the top right-hand field, e.g. a change made in September, 2000 would be noted as 2000.09. This allows a later user to judge the reliability of the info in the record. Use [brackets] to indicate info that people have asked not be released.
* To search for (Find or Command-F) a range of records use ..., e.g. b...
* Select and sort desired records then use "output" to construct a report. Then open the file you made for the report in Word or Excel to prepare for printing. Adjust tabs to get columns lined up.
* Alert others if there is a message for them, or forward it to their personal e-mail. Delete messages when you have responded to them, or move to the appropriate mailbox within Eudora if you have to keep them. Move attached files from the Attachments folder to the appropriate folder on the computer or delete them as part of processing the e-mail messages. Do not let messages accumulate unprocessed in the Inbox or let attached files accumulate in the Attachments folder.
* E-mail aliases or nicknames (Command-L) mean that you don't have to remember everyone's addresses.
* Use the Find command to locate any old message.
* To send an attachment with a message use command-H and move through the dialog box until you find the file and can select it.
* Use the "redirect" command, not "forward," to forward messages.
* Respond to inquiries from UMass online and file according to whether the inquiry was hot (worth following up on) or not. Some inquirers are not qualified; some want a Ph.D. only; some are good candidates for certificate or M.A.
c. Web site
The official university website contains info about CCT that rarely needs updating. It has a link to the working CCT website. The master copy of this is currently located on Peter Taylor's computer, and is updated by him and then uploaded onto the www.cct.umb.edu server using Fetch.
If someone else gets involved, note that the design criteria for the website extend well beyond graphic design. See also sitemap for website.
It is ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL that webpages are never edited using Word (unless the person knows how to avoid Word inserting zillions of unneeded html code).
All files are stored in one folder, CCT, on the computer and in one directory on the server.
d. Other files
Faculty correspondence, course material, items relevant to running the program, etc. are in folders with self-explanatory names inside CCT-GPD on the CCT hard drive. If in doubt, leave in the "to be sorted" folder. Any new file you create, give it an informative name and save into the appropriate folder. Do not leave any files on the computer desktop or in your personal folder -- they get forgotten, lost, or become a chore for someone else to clean up. GAs should clean off their personal files when they finish their term as a GA. If you detect two versions of the same file, delete redundant versions-consult with GPD if in doubt, or if both contain unique information.
e. Other Databases
No longer maintained separately from the CCT database.
f. WISER system
This difficult-to-use university database provides information about course enrollments. A window to it can also be opened on Peter Taylor's office computer. Ask him for assistance.
Use sync software to copy new or changed files to a flash drive (memory stick), which can then be transferred to the GPD's computer (for use and as an extra backup).
files/ (of the old paper kind) and forms
a. Prospective, current, and past students' folders
These are initiated when a new application arrives--follow the steps on the application tracking sheet, including assigning a general advisor and informing both student and advisor. If an application is turned down, a student graduates, or a student withdraws from the program, the folder is moved to the Past Students' Folders (stored in CCT closet next to W-2-209).
Memos, correspondence, copies of forms, and updated transcripts should be filed in the back of the students' folders. The transcripts are generated by Graduate Records mid-semester (April and October; contact Margi Katz if they don't arrive) and, after the GPD has reviewed them, filed (see mid-semester, above). Previous versions can be removed. When the student graduates, the folder can be thinned down to essential records, then stored in the CCT closet. Add loose leaf copies of the synthesis to the folder and use to make copies if requested.
Most forms are online, but paper copies are always available from the Advising Office, W-2-xx
Not on line
Grade Change forms--used when students need to have a grade changed. Professors will ask you to send the completed form to the Graduate Studies Office.
Tuition Waivers--some state workers (and others) may have tuition waivers. Tell students to turn their paperwork in to the Graduate Studies Office if they are non-degree students, or in to the university bursar's office if they are in the CCT program to receive the appropriate waiver.
Required Course Waivers--On rare occasions, the Director will permit students to substitute a course for one of the required courses. A memo to Lisa Lavely, the Graduate Registrar, must be written to specify the course waived and substituted.
c. Master copies of publicity material and program info
d. Syllabi and summaries of evaluations
Get paper and electronic copies of syllabi for each course at the start of the semester. File the most recent version of the syllabus for any course at the front and upload electronic version with links to courses/html website. When student evaluation of courses are summarized onto single sheets, these can be filed with the corresponding syllabus. The evaluations themselves should be forwarded to the departmental secretary.
e. Faculty Advisor/Coordinator's folder and other folders about CCT
These are generated and maintained for the most part by the Faculty Advisor/Coordinator. New material gets added to the back of the folder. During periodic working bees, these may be winnowed and old material archived in the CCT closet.
Contact info & other arrangements
Denise McNair, the assistant dean (7-76xx) is ultimately in charge of course and room scheduling, GAships, rooms and key requests, phone and computer hook up requests, hiring of part-timers, and other personnel matters, purchases, and other budgetary matters, such as guest speaker honoraria, and generally trying to juggle limited resources yet keep people happy. You may get these things bounced back to the Department before Ann will act. Be patient.
Bernice Alexander (7-7606) is the dean's/college secretary. She has master keys to offices, handles requests for supplies (and has the key to the GCOE supply cabinet). She is also the person you go to ask how to get your paychecks on a weekly basis.
Sade Johnson (7-7591) is the secretary of the C&I department, located on the second floor in W-2-93. CCT is officially part of C&I, and, in principle, the C&I secretary can help out with CCT work if it fits their work schedule. The C&I secretary also has a master key, gets continuing education course roster and grade sheets, faculty contracts, etc. sent to them, and collects syllabi at the start of the semester.
b1. Graduate Records
Margie Katz (7-6403) deals with graduation, but is also a problem solver.
Lisa Lavely (7-6405) is the director and sends memos about "problem" students and other matters.
b1. Graduate Admissions
Maura Branley (7-6408) and Suddi St. Ives (7-6404) deal with admissions files and procedures.
c. Graduate Studies
Cheryl Harris (7-5702) with whom the GA needs to sign a contract in the beginning of each semester.
Joan Liem (7-xx) Dean, dis/approves petitions when CCT students need to bend rules, but start with Rita Nethersole first.
Rita Nethersole (7-5718) assistant dean is a CCT graduate.
d. Continuing Education
Wanda Willard (7-7915) is the main point of entry for course proposals for winter and summer sessions and for courses and programs CCT offers at other times.
Elaine Sullivan (7-7915) is their assistant.
Ann Holt and Joe Lally (7-7910) handles salary payments.
e. Copyright Permissions
n/a if material is put on electronic reserve
f. Audiovisual Equipment
can be booked at the Wheatley media center (7-5966) in room W 1-039 on a once-off or regular weekly basis. When GAs call to book, state that you are calling for Professor XX. Then, when you collect the equipment, remind them you're picking it up for Professor XX. GAs will need to turn in an ID to pick up equipment.
g. Films and Videos
can be ordered well in advance online or from the reserve desk. If UMass doesn't own what the faculty member wants, she'll try to borrow or buy it.
h. Library Reserve and Reference
Items to place on reserve (or electronic reserve) should be taken to the reserve desk on the 3rd floor a few weeks in advance of the semester. The reference section produces a very handy guide to using the library and its databases. Orientation sessions can be arranged for classes by calling Janet Dipaolo at 7-5939 or submitting the Library Instruction Request Form.
Bulk mailings need to be sorted in zip code order, and, unless they are thin and crisply folded items, secured with tape, not stapled. If they are to be charged to a special account, they need to be accompanied by a form (available from Ann carbone) specifying the account. It's usually best to walk the bulk mailings (or any other special delivery) over to the mailroom in the Quinn Admin. building, Lower Level. Bulk mailings need to specify NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION U.S. POSTAGE PAID BOSTON MAPERMIT NO. 52094 in a box in the top right hand corner.
no longer used for binding syn/theses
Access code = 52771 Voicemail can be heard from off- campus by dialing (617) 287-4700, then #7xxxx, then use access code. Press 4 to repeat a message. A detailed explanation of other options is given at the start of the campus phone directory. [The extension 7-6520 is no longer active.]
Collect applications from the mail slot for CCT in the Graduate Admissions office (in Campus center) and process them according to the tracking sheet.
m. CCT news
This should be sent in batches with informative subject lines and extraneous material removed.
n. Copying and Printing
n.1. Xeroxing/Copying in Wheatley
For occasional items, copying onto letterhead, preparing master copies for course packets, and rush items.
n.2. The Reprographics Center in the Quinn Admin Bldg or Campus Center
does more complicated jobs, including folding brochures. A form specifying the charge code and other details needs to be submitted with the computer file or camera-ready copy. They can advise you if you have questions.
n.3. Computer printers
Use chooser in the apple menu to select the Curriculum and Instruction's 4350 laser printer.
o. Operations Manual
This has been translated into the webpage you are reading. When you see mistakes, learn about new procedures and personnel, or have other ideas, don't keep them in your head or leave them on scraps of paper. Write them on the office master copy and tell the Program coordinator or web person to insert them to the computer version of it.
p. Online courses - see detailed guide