Campus aerial view

Practical Information

Course planning requires deep thought and expertise in discipline and pedagogy. Teaching at a university also requires lots of pesky detailed knowledge from ID cards to the campus map, addressed below. Have we forgotten something? Let us know at

Especially for New Instructors

Instructors who are either new to teaching or just new to Montclair are encouraged to attend Montclair Essentials: Informational Session for New Instructors, a frequently offered workshop designed to provide essential information and useful tips to make the transition to Montclair manageable and successful. 

  • IT Quick Start Guide: Here you will find information on claiming your NetID, setting up email, and WiFi.
  • Net ID: All new faculty must set up their NetIDs and email as soon as possible – ideally at least two weeks prior to the first day of classes. Your NetID gives you a unique electronic identity for access to university online services, including email.
  • Montclair Gmail account: Your email address will be your <<NET ID>>; your password will be your NetID password.
  • DUO MFA (multi-factor authentication): Required to access Canvas, Nest, gmail, and many other campus portals. See the DUO MFA Enrollment & Usage Guide to log into the DUO self-service portal and set up your second factor device(s).
  • Campus maps:
  • Parking: Online parking permit and annual registration; surface lot parking is free but requires registration for a virtual permit. Adjuncts can part in full-time faculty/staff lots. Note: when choosing a permit, adjunct faculty should select “Full-Time Faculty/Staff Permit.”
  • Public transportation
  • NEST (Network Engagement and Student/Staff Transactions): Main web portal to your class schedule, grade submission, Navigate reporting, among others.
  • Office space and copying: Contact your department or program chair or administrator.
  • Library Orientation for New Faculty: Overview of services and resources
  • Human Resources – New Employees:  The information and resources.
  • Payroll Services: Information on payroll schedule and direct deposit.
  • Zoom Account: Information about claiming your Zoom account.
  • Employee services: A collection of links that imagine the most needed resources for employees across positions.
  • Required trainings: 
    • You will receive notification through Workday for the following:
        • Annual College & University Disclosure
        • Uniform Ethics Code
        • Plain Language Ethics Guide
        • Supervisory Conflict of Interest
        • Outside Activity/Employment
    • You will receive email notification for the following:
      • FERPA training 
      • Title IX 
      • Cybersecurity training (launched annually during the first semester in which you are actively teaching)
Spaces and Places
  • Parking: Online parking permit and annual registration or public transportation. Surface lot parking is free but requires registration for a virtual permit. Note: when choosing a permit, adjunct faculty should select “Full-Time Faculty/Staff Permit.”
  • Classroom information: In NEST check “my schedule” to see the exact facts about your course, including your assigned classroom (check again the night before in case a change was made.)
    • For details about your classroom, including technical set-up, see 25live, accessible by anyone with a netID.
    • Locked out of your classroom? Contact your department administrator or Dean’s Office immediately so the problem can be remedied. A DIY approach is to email to request access; copy your department administrator.
    • Outdoor spaces for classes can be requested through 25live. Search for “tent” during warm weather. More information found at Tent Request Instructions and Tent Request and Use Policy.
  • Office space: Contact your department or program chair or administrator.
  • Dining on campus: List of locations and use of ID card.
  • Faculty and Graduate Student Commons: Looking for a room to book for an event or activity? This 36-seat room in Sprague Library is available first come first serve for individual and group work, and the entire room may be booked at least 3 days in advance for seminars, meetings, or group activities.
  • Lactation Rooms: Locations available to all Montclair State University students, faculty, staff or visitors on campus who need a private space to express milk.
Key Contacts

Emergency?: Contact University Police at 973-655-5222 (or 5222 from a campus phone). On the Bloomfield campus, dial 911. For the Bloomfield security office, call  973-748-9000, ext. 1366

What if? Emergency scenarios and procedures

  • Canvas course problems? Reach out to ITDS ( or schedule a consultation.
  • Information Technology: or x7971. When you run into a computer, phone, or other technological problem, seek help.
  • Facilities Service Desk: Scroll down to find “Submit a service request” for issuing concerns about classrooms and offices that need facilities’ attention, or call 973-655-5444.
  • Campus bookstore: Student Center, First Floor.
    • Course material adoptions:
      • Via Canvas: Log in to Canvas; select “Follett Discover”; start adopting. For more information about the process, scroll down to the Follett Discover drop-down menu on the Auxiliary Services page.
      • Via email: Include: your course information, ie, Math 100-2; and the ISBN, author, title, edition, and publisher
    • For help with textbook adoptions, email
      Note: the university bookstore does not provide desk copies for faculty. Visit an individual publisher’s website for desk copy ordering information.
  • Rave Mobile Safety: A campus-wide alert system. Enrollment is typically automatic but check in NEST.
  • Navigate: Communicate with students and their advisors. Also accessible via NEST.
  • Starfish (used by Bloomfield faculty in place of Navigate, available through the My Bloomfield portal.
  • Workday: HR platform–view your paystubs; make withholding and payment elections.
Key Dates
Technology Support
University Policies and Procedures
Mandatory Academic Engagement Activity

What It Is

The Academic Engagement activity is an assignment and module pre-loaded into your Canvas course. It is the University’s method for:

  • ensuring student eligibility for financial aid
  • identifying students who are not engaged in classes to enable early intervention
  • gathering statistics for enrollment and student success planning, and
  • helping students spend a minute thinking about their academic intentions.

Each semester, including summer and winter, Montclair State University disburses millions of dollars of financial aid to students for payment of tuition and other expenses related to their education. U.S. Department of Education regulations govern the eligibility of students to receive aid including the regulation that requires all institutions, including Montclair State University, to verify that a student attended at least one session of your class. This system replaces the old “attendance verification” procedure.

How the Academic Engagement Activity Works

Students confirm their Academic Engagement by completing the “Academic Engagement” assignment that was added to every University scheduled course in Canvas, located in Assignments and Modules. For classes created later in the semester, this assignment will be added automatically.

The assignment is titled “Academic Engagement  – FALL 2024 [or current semester]” and it asks, “What do you hope to learn in this course?”

With this new method, there is no action required of the faculty member beyond making sure their Canvas course and this assignment and module are all “published.”

Students will receive several communications and follow-ups throughout the semester to reinforce its importance, and you are encouraged to do so as well.  You may find students’ responses worth reading and you may also respond to them – that’s your choice.

For internships, independent studies, and other courses for which Canvas is not typically used:

Students in these course experiences are also required to complete the Academic Engagement activity in the associated Canvas course, even if Canvas is not used for any other purpose. Please do not unpublish these “little” courses with just one or two students.

Can I add points to the assignment? Can I review the responses to the assignment? Can I add a deadline?

Yes, you can do all these things. In fact, we recommend it!  The imported assignment does not have a deadline because the University offers courses that begin at many different times, making a universal deadline of one week after classes begin impossible. The assignment is set at 0 points to ensure that faculty maintain control over assessment, but if you’d like to add points for incentive, you can make that modification.  In addition, once you add points and a due date — not before the first day of your class — the assignment will show up in students’ “To Do” in the right-hand side of the Canvas course. Students’ answers will give you a sense of student motivation which can help you connect and increase engagement.

What do I do if a student does not complete the assignment?  Will the student not receive Financial Aid?

It is possible that your students who do not complete the assignment do not receive Financial Aid, or their “engagement” has been otherwise verified — if students engage in Canvas by completing another assignment during the same time, they will be verified. While reminding students to complete an assignment once or twice, adding a due date (so the assignment appears in the “to do” section of their Canvas page), and even adding some points is helpful, beyond these measures, faculty should not be concerned about students who have not completed the assignment.

Why do I have multiple versions of this assignment in my Canvas course?

You have multiple versions because your course has been copied over — for help with merging dual sections rather than copying them, please contact ITDS.

Information to help students understand and complete this activity can be found at Red Hawk Central: Academic Engagement.

Last Modified: Wednesday, June 19, 2024 10:10 am