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Instructional Resources & Logistics

Mandated Course Syllabi & Assessment

All course syllabi are due prior to the first day of instruction. 

It is the responsibility of each primary instructor of record to submit a syllabus for each of their assigned courses. Submissions of syllabi are due within the CatCourse (Canvas) system prior to the start of instruction for students and course accreditation purposes. Below are a couple helpful links for academic appointees to familiarize themselves with using CatCourses to upload and create course content. Additionally, there is a link to archived NatSci course syllabi for the benefit of current/former students and academic appointees. Please email to request syllabi prior to Fall 2016. 

Confirm Section Assignments

Census is on the third week of every semester. 

All instructors must confirm if their assigned courses are accurately reflected in the UC Merced Course Schedule for the respective term. The data in the UC Merced Course Schedule and your access to CatCourse (Course Management System) is directly populated from Banner (Student Information System).  A schedule census of all courses is reported to the University of California Office of the President (UCOP) on the third week of every semester as noted above. Additionally, end-of-term course evaluations are generated for each instructor based on the assigned courses on the UC Merced Course Schedule and to assure students complete evaluations for the correct instructor please confirm you are assigned to the correct course sections. 

Please report to NatSci Curriculum & Instruction ( to correct any NatSci instructor schedule discrepancies on the UC Merced Course Schedule as soon as possible prior to instruction and especially census. 


Lecturer/TA Office Hours & Keys

Lecturers and graduate student TAs should forward their office hour space requests with certain time and day of the week to NS Faculty Support ( Work space assignments for respective office hours are based on a first come first serve basis and once you are assigned to a work space please contact NS Faculty Support to receive a key to gain access. Those who already have a key checked out may keep it until they are no longer assigned to their respective work space.

If NS Faculty Support is unable to accomodate your TA or lecturer office hours into one of our NS work spaces or you would like to reserve additional non-office hour space (exam review sessions, early finals for student, etc) you can submit a request for a room in one of our classroom buildings, library, and or select conference rooms. 


Room Reservations

  • Instructional Space Reservations* for events can be requested using the Astra Schedule Event Request Form. Room reservations are made for the following events: general meetings, reoccuring meetings, clinic hours, alternate exams, testing, review sessions, TA Office Hours, videoconferencing, etc. Nethier Astra or EMS should be used to reserve space for an academic courses, all academic course schedule requests must be emailed to your school’s curriculum manager for approval.
  • How to Submit a Room Request on Astra Schedule 
  • Classroom Reservation Policies & Procedures
  • Non-Instructional Space Reservations* for events can be requested on our new EMS (Event Management System) Room Reservation System using your UCMnet ID to login. EMS should not be used to reserve space for an academic course, all academic course schedule requests must be emailed to your school’s curriculum manager for approval.The campus has been engaged in a project to implement a Room Reservation System that streamlines the reservation process for non-instructional spaces. Features of the new system EMS include:
  • Ability to view room details like photos, amenities, and available configurations
  • Ability to book rooms through Outlook (for Windows users) or through a convenient web portal (for all users)
  • All non-instructional spaces including outdoor spaces are viewable in one system
  • Ability to search for space according to your space needs (features, capacity, etc.)



Instructional Lab Access

All lab access will be set by the first day of instruction and only CatCard accessible. If you do not have access to the labs for which you will need access in order to teach your first section, please contact:

Instructional Printing

UCM Copy and Mail Services is replacing campus printers and transitioning to Pharos System Prox readers for CatCard access to copy services and will completely retire the use of instructional copy codes by June 30 2019. CatCard access for instructional copy services will now be requested for you by your department of hire prior to your first day of instruction and will be terminated at the conclusion of your teaching appointment.  

All Campus Copier Locations:

  • SE1: 247, 270, 347
  • SE2: 265
  • COB1: 220, 310* Note that copier #1 in COB1-310 is cat card access, and the Xerox copier in the same room is copy code access.
  • COB2: 215, 399
  • Academic Office Annex (AOA) Hallway
  • SSM 350A
  • ACS 219, 344


Copy support is provided by SNS Curriculum Support ( only when a course doesn't have a TA support or an exception is made for extenuating circumstances such as a peak workload period for course TA(s) or an abrupt leave of absence. All instructors are expected to plan accordingly or coordinate with their TAs regarding printing tasks well in advance.  Copying exams is not a service our administrative staff can guarantee on short notice but will make every effort to accomodate emergent exam printing requests as timely as possible.


Instructor Stationary Supplies

Basic stationary supplies are provided to NatSci instructors at our NatSci Front Desk in the Dean's Suite (SE1 370) upon request. Please view the stationary items and front desk services available to NatSci instructors below.

 SNS Front Desk Services & Supplies:

  • Report/troubleshoot Printer Issues
  • Portable Projector Checkouts
  • Distribute Instructor Paychecks 
  • Locked out of your SE1 Office
  • Key checkout for instructor work space
  • Package Deliveries
  • List of Front Desk Stationary available to NatSci instructors. 
  • Scantron Forms for Grading Only: No. 882-E (Green),  No. 106173 (Blue), No. 223127 (Red), Item Analysis No. 9700 (Green)


Textbook Orders & Copies

You can view submitted course textbook materials by term at our UCM Campus Bookstore site.

Primary instructors should submit their course textbook orders to UCM Text Books ( 1-2 months prior to the first day of instruction. Please note publishers will only provide complimentary textbook copies for courses with submitted textbook titles. Please email the Bookstore Manager, Nathan Garcia ( with textbook course materials, pricing, hard/soft format options, bundling, sourcing, etc. Please contact Nathan Garcia to request Inclusive Access for your course, interactive digital course materials at reduced costs in comparison to printed textbooks.

Faculty/Lecturers should work with the appropriate publisher representative to acquire desk copies for their own use by contacting their Publisher representative using one of the links below. If your publisher is not listed below you may source your own desk copies using the Faculty Center website.

Textbook Publisher Contact List

SNS Instructional Support works directly with the Campus Bookstore & publishers to obtain desk copies for Graduate Student Teaching Assistants (TAs). TAs can check out instructional loaner textbooks from the NatSci Front Desk (SE1 370) 21 days prior to instruction for the length of their academic appointment and are due back to the same NatSci Front Desk at the end of instruction to recheck or return for instructors teaching the following term. Please contact regarding desk copies for TAs. 


Instructional Computing Support/Storage

If you are teaching a lab course using Linux, instructional computing support should be requested by the School of Engineering via email If you are teaching a computer lab course using Windows, you may request support by contacting our IT Help Desk

Box and CatDrive are the two primary storage services that are available to faculty, staff and students depending on your academically appointed role. Below is a brief description of each form of storage which can be found on the link preceeding each description. Additionally, click this link to the Comparison Chart - Box and CatDrive to compare storage features between both storage options.

  • Box Storage is a cloud-hosted file storage service and is available to all active staff, faculty or students with a UCMNetID. Box supports file sharing and collaboration through a robust set of synced editing, commenting, and task assignment functions, along with delegated file and folder security.
  • CatDrive Storage provides a shared location to store/manage files among multiple computers/users and is available to all active faculty and staff with a UCMNetID. CatDrive is designed to be robust, reliable, and easy to access for authorized users. NOTE: This storage is not HIPAA and ePHI compliant, so DO NOT store sensitive data on CatDrive.

Course Grading

Lecturers and primary course instructors are expected to coordinate grading timelines and duties to ensure final grades are submitted before the deadline.  It is advised that contingency plans are in place in the event an instructor is unable perform grading duties due to emergent circumstances.  Depending on the date of the final exam, the grading process may extend into the week after instruction.

Please see the links below for step by step instructions for submitting mid-semester & final grades.


Scantron Machines

SNS supports and maintains three Scantron machines, located in SE1 347, COB 310 and ACS 344 – only SNS instructors and teaching assistants have CatCard access to those rooms. Below are brief descriptions of each machine:

Scantron 888p+ Machine - SE1 347 - Green Form No. 882-E

  1. Mark the Answer Key
    - Mark the key using the same form marked by students
    - Find the key marking row directly above question 1
    - Mark the scoring option you prefer
    - Mark the correct answer to each question
  2. Score the Test
    - Turn the Scantron machine on using the power switch located on the back right side of the machine
    - Press Start
    - Feed the answer key
    - Feed the tests one at a time
    - Turn the machine off

Link to Compatible Scantron Machine 888P+ Forms
Youtube Video on How to Operate 888P+ Scantron Machine

    OpScan 4ES Scanner - COB 310 - Red Form No. 223127 + Blue Form No. 106473

    The OpScan 4ES scanner is a digital grader connected to a password protected laptop installed with software that grades and can generate statistical grading reports for additional analysis.  The scanner will not print anything on Scantron forms or create images of form. Please email snscurriculum@ucmerced to request the laptop password with your primary instructor attached.

    OpScan 4ES Scanner Grading Instructions
    Link to Compatible OpScan 4ES Scanner Forms
    Youtube Video on How to Operate OpScan 4ES Scanner


    Please contact your course(s) primary instructor and or your fellow graduate student TAs for on-the-spot help from peers. Typically an experienced peer is able to help within minutes of sending an email. SNS Curriculum Support can also facilitate communication for assistance. 

      Course Evaluation System

      Student course evaluations are used as an important source of information for the future improvement of courses and instruction. At the end of each term of instruction, students enrolled in natural sciences classes are sent a link to complete their course evaluation via Class Climate, our online course evaluation feedback system. After all grades for the class have been posted, instructors and teaching assistants are sent a link to review their evaluations.


      Instructional Course Fieldtrips

      Instructors coordinating course fieldtrips please review the UCM Instructor Field Trip Packet ahead of your planned course fieldtrip.

      NS Curriculum & Instructional support only assists with transportation for course fieldtrips. All types of course fieldtrip transportation requests should be submited as much in advance as possible prior to the date of your fieldtrip. Both campus and off-campus rentals are reserved on a first-come-first-serve basis and rentals can be especially limited during school graduation season.

      Important Course Fieldtrip Forms - NatSci fieldtrip participants must provide any of the following applicable forms to the NatSci instructor fieldtrip coordinator:


      TAPS Rental Vehicles 
      Vehicles are available for rent by faculty, staff and students for events and university business. Vehicles are available for pick up during TAPS office hours. Instructors & Staff: To request a vehicle, call Fleet Services or TAPS for availability, then complete a Vehicle Reservation Request Form. Contact SNS Travel via and to request a transportation FAU for your reservation. 

      All drivers must: 

      • Have submitted a DMV Pull Form to UCM Taps ( prior to driving a campus vehicle
      • Be affiliated with UC Merced
      • Possess a valid CA driver’s license
      • Be present to sign out the vehicle and receive the key


      Fieldtrip Off-Campus Vehicle Requests

      Use the information provided below to make a reservation for a discounted UC-contracted rate on a rental car used for official UC business.


      UCM Discount Code

      Contact for Online or Phone Reservations

      Accepted Payment Methods

      Parking Permits
      (Not Required on Saturdays/Sundays)

      Enterprise Rent-A-Car
      Reservations are made by the traveler, using the UC Merced Account #



      Reserve a Rental Car using their online reservation website or call 1-800-261-7331

      Cash or credit/debit card including your T&E card (POs not accepted).

      If you need free parking permits, contact & Karina Villegas ( to request a FAU to submit in eDoc Request Form for scratcher parking permits.


      Reservations are made by the traveler, using the UC Merced Account #



      Reserve a Rental Car using their online reservation website or call 1-888-222-0286

      Cash or credit/debit card including your T&E card (POs not accepted).

      National Car Rental
      Reservations are made by the traveler, using the UC Merced Account #



      Reserve a Rental Car using their online reservation website or call 1-800-227-7368

      Cash or credit/debit card including your T&E card (POs not accepted).

      VIA Charter Buses
      Reservations are made by SNS Curriculum in coordination with the requesting instructor.



      Complete & submit NS Course Fieldtrip Vehicle Request Form to

      Purchase Orders (POs) Only

      Personal Vehicles

      Reservations are not required for personal vehicles. Just ensure parking is covered and provide Liability waivers to students. 







      Deadline, Forms, Grading, Accommodating Students, FERPA

      Important Office of the Registrar information can be found at the following link tailored specifically for instructional faculty and staff: