October 2011

Friday, Oct. 7, 2011 -- Classroom policies


During a recent class session, a student suggested to the professor that it would be more efficient to have the professor pass around a single folder containing graded student assignments in alphabetical order, rather than having the professor spend nearly 10 minutes at the beginning of class handing back graded assignments to students one by one as their name is called. The professor responded that the student's suggestion was actually illegal at UAF, and the current policy is that the professor must call each student by name, one by one to pick up any graded assignments. This policy if true seems quite archaic and does take valuable time away during lecture. Can you shed some light on this topic?


The professor was likely referring to the federal Family Educational Rights to Privacy Act which deals specifically with the educational records of students, affording them certain rights with respect to thsoe records. It may be the professor has chose this method to keep students assignments confidential rather than passing them around for anyone to see. UAF requires no specified method for handing back graded student work, but faculty are required to follow FERPA. There are alternative methods of returning graded work, e.g., placing graded student work in named envelopes, that satisfy FERPA regulations that could save class time bu tthe approach is up to the faculty member.

Under FERPA, students are given three primary rights. They have the right to:

  • inspect and review their education records;
  • have some control over the disclosure of information from their education records; and
  • seek to amend incorrect education records.

For more information on FERPA visit www.alaska.edu/studentservices/ferpa/.

Friday, Oct. 7, 2011 -- SRC employee rates


Chancellor Rogers mentioned during the convocation speech that helping employees get healthier was a priority. If this is the case, then why is it so expensive for employees to use the SRC?


I have wondered for a while now, with all of the focus on employee health and wellness, why are the hours for employee life membership at the SRC so restrictive?  If the university wants to promote health and wellness in employees the SRC should be acessible at all times rather than just a few hours a day. 

While the SRC is fairly affordable to staff, I believe that if the cost was reduced significantly it would be more of an incentive for employees to participate.

I work a schedule that puts me off work before the time slotted for employees and I have been given a hard time about that when I go to the SRC at that time. Thank you for the consideration of my questions and comments.   

From Mike Sfraga, Vice Chancellor for Students

The Department of Recreation, Adventure and Wellness offers an SRC annual, individual memberships to the general public for $1,035 per year. For UAF faculty and staff the price will be reduced by 61 percent to just $403. While we feel that this is a great value, we will offer an additional 10 percent off the price for those employees that participate in the IHP program.

Here’s how it works: At the six-week IHP check-up, the IHP consultants will hand out a complimentary two-week pass to the SRC. This pass will also serve as a “10 percent off coupon” for current staff and faculty that do not have active SRC memberships. The coupon may be applied to either an individual or family membership. We hope to provide additional programs in the future and welcome your comments and suggestions.

For the 2011-2012 academic year, SRC membership rates (without the 10 percent off coupon) for UAF faculty and staff are as follows:

Individual = $403 per year

Family = $575 per year

Faculty and staff can use automatic payroll deduction to pay for SRC membership.

The payroll deduction requires a minimum of $30 per pay period for individual plan and $50 per pay period for family plan.

These prices are good through the 2011-2012 academic year.

Currently the SRC is open from 5:30 a.m. - 10 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. - 10 p.m. on Saturdays and noon - 7 p.m. on Sundays. We'll review all aspects of operations in the future including the hours of operation. Please send your comments and suggestions to fyses@uaf.edu.

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2011 -- Backup tape machine for shared drives


I heard that OIT's backup tape machine is broken, and has been since August. Does this mean that all shared drives (m:\ and n:\ drives) have not been backed-up since? This is a serious matter, as some departments keep all of their important data in those drives with the understanding that OIT makes daily backups of that data. If this is true, why haven't we been notified this is going on, and are department going to be refunded some of the storage drive rental fees?


From Karl Kowalski, Chief Information Technology Officer

This is only partially true. We run multiple tape backup arrays and yes some of those tape drives are broken. However, backups are still continuing with the remaining drives. If there is a need to restore during this reduced capacity, we may have to ask the user to wait until a scheduled backup completes, prior to accessing another tape to restore. So, be assured the data you assumed to be backed up is still being backed up. We are working directly with HP to resolve the issues with the other drives.

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