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Instructional Resources & Logistics

Mandated Course Syllabi & Assessment

For Fall 2018 course syllabi are due Wednesday, August 15 - Wednesday, August 22. 

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 more recent NatSci course syllabi for the benefit of current/former students and academic appointees. 

Confirm Section Assignments

Census is on the third week of every semester. For Fall 2018, it is Monday, September 5.

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 and 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

For academic and instructional purposes there are rooms available for reservation in COB1, COB2, Kolligian Library, SE1 and SE2 depending on your needs. 

  • Classroom Reservations for an Event in COB1, COB2, SSM, SSB, KL 202*, KL 208*, KL 209, KL 217, KL 296 & 396 using the UC Merced Astra Schedule to process room requests. Room reservations are made within the 'Events' tab on the top of the webpage for such events as a general meeting, multiple meetings, reoccuring meetings, clinic hours, alternate exams, testing, review sessions, TA Office Hours, videoconferencing. 
    --> How to Submit a Room Request on Astra Schedule 
    --> Classroom Reservation Policies & Procedures

    *Indicates special approval required for computer labs.

  • Conference Room Reservations Contacts:

           S&E1 Conference Rooms
           Vanessa Ortega - NS Front Desk Specialist
           P: 209-228-4309

           S&E2 & SSM 230/235 Conference Rooms
           Web Form:
           P: 209-228-4411

           SSM Conference Rooms

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 Copy Code (Printing)

Please note that instructional copy codes are for instructional copies only. The instructional copy code is emailed to assigned instructors of record which is course-specific and changed each term. Instructions on how to use your copy code in our xerox machines please read the Copy Code Instructions file. 

Instructional copy code can be used at the following locations:

  • Graduate Student TAs: SE1 247, 347, COB1 310, AOA
  • Lecturers: SE1 247, 347, COB1 310, AOA, SE2 265,365
  • NS Faculty in SE1: SE1 247, 347, COB1 310
  • NS Faculty in SE2: SE1 247, 347, COB1 310, SE2 265,365

Copy support is provided by administrative staff when a TA isn’t assigned to the course or an exception is made for extenuating circumstances such as a peak workload period for course TA(s) or an abrupt leave of absence.

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. Stationary items include white board markers, erasers, pencils, and pens. Please view the Front Desk Stationary List  for items available to NatSci instructors. 

 Additionally, you may contact the NS Front Desk for the following services:

  • Report/troubleshoot Printer Issues
  • Portable Projector Checkouts
  • Reserving Conference Rooms in SE1
  • Distribute Instructor Paychecks 
  • Locked out of your SE1 Office
  • Key checkout for instructor work space
  • Package Deliveries

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.

Desk (Textbook) Copies

You can view submitted course textbook materials for Fall 2018 at our UCM Campus Bookstore site (agree to terms at the bottom of the page to view):

Faculty should work with the appropriate publisher representative to acquire desk copies for their own use by contacting their Publisher representative.  Due to Publisher practices complimentary NS textbook copies are only provided for required course textbook titles that have been submitted to UCM Text Books ( by the primary instructor.

Please refer to the compiled list of Textbook Publisher Contacts to directly request a copy from your publisher representative. If your representative is unresponsive please forward your email request to

Textbook copies are only ordered as requested on behalf of new instructors and graduate student TAs which will be checked out to them for the length of their academic appointment. Loaned copies are then due back to the NatSci Front Desk (SE 370) to be re-issued to instructors teaching courses the following term. Please submit a NatSci Textbook Request Webform for each course textbook at least two weeks prior to needing it in the event a copy is not readily available on campus.

Course Grading

Lecturers and primary course instructors should meet to ensure that all grading is completed and all necessary information has been shared in order to submit final grades. Provide any other input on the course as requested by the primary instructor. Depending on the date of the final exam, the grading process may extend into the week after the instructional end of the semester. The following is a link for information on How to Use The CatCourse (Canvas) Gradebook, please refer to the Canvas Instructor Guide - Table of Contents for all other Canvas functions.

Scantron Machines

There is a Scantron 888P+ machine available for use in SE1 347 in addition to an iNSIGHT 30 OpScan 4ES Scanner in COB 310 for a large red form (No. 223127) and a large blue form (No. 106473). Both rooms are Catcard Accessible. The OpScan 4ES scanner is connected to a laptop that is password protected. Please email snscurriculum@ucmerced to request the password with your primary instructor attached. The links provided below are useful to both verify what scantrom forms are compatible with and how to operate each machine. 

If you need further assistance operating the scantron machines please contact your course(s) primary instructor and or your fellow graduate student TAs. TAs have gotten on-the-spot help from their peers within minutes of sending out a call via email which I can facilitate if preferred.

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 course evaluation feedback system. After 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 will assist with transportation for course fieldtrips only. Course fieldtrip transportation requests must be submited prior to instruction. Both campus and off-campus rentals are reserved on a first-come-first-serve basis and the general availability of charter bus rentals can be limited throughout the year as they are requested by external parties. 

Faculty and staff can visit the TAPS Rental Vehicles page to rent a campus vehicle or contact if campus fleet vehicles do not meet your transportation needs.

To request charter buses or off-campus vehicles the primary course instructor will need to fill out the following form:
NS Course Fieldtrip Vehicle Request Webform

All drivers must: 

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

Important Course Fieldtrip Forms - All NatSci fieldtrip participants must provide the following forms to the NatSci instructor fieldtrip coordinator (

Helpful Academic Personnel Links

Important information related to UC Merced and Systemwide Policies for new academic appointees of UC Merced. 




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: