Frequently Asked Questions

This list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) will be updated regularly. 

Last update: August 5, 2021, 10 AM

Vaccination and Mask Requirements

Will the College require community members to be vaccinated?

Yes, William James College is requiring staff, faculty, and students to be fully vaccinated before our full return to campus for the Fall 2021 semester. For the few who might be unable to comply with this directive for religious or health restrictions there will be some room for reasonable accommodation. This decision was announced on May 5. 

How will the requirement be implemented? 

The College’s COVID Task Force is meeting regularly to evolve and execute our return to campus plan. Details, including details about how the vaccine requirement will be implemented, will be shared during Summer 2021. 

Mask Requirements (As of May 29, 2021)

  • Consistent with updated CDC recommendations, the Commonwealth’s mask mandate was rescinded effective May 29, 2021. 
  • Effective July 7, 2021, masks are no longer required outdoors for fully vaccinated persons when on the William James College campus grounds (indoors or outdoors). Unvaccinated individuals are required to wear a mask. 
  • Per the Governor’s order, businesses other than those directly identified (transportation systems, healthcare settings, congregate care settings) are permitted to set their own rules regarding mask and vaccination policies. Students working in field sites should understand the mask requirements of their field site.
  • See “vaccine requirements” below for additional information.

Vaccination Requirements (As of May 29, 2021)

  • All William James College community members must be vaccinated before returning to campus this fall for work or study.
  • Accommodations will be made for those who, for documented religious or health reasons, cannot comply with this mandate.
    • Faculty and staff members seeking accommodation should contact Human Resources to request the required documentation.
    • Students seeking accommodation should contact the Registrars’ office to request the required documentation.
    • Students enrolled in fully remote programs, who will not physically report to campus at any point during the fall semester, and who will not be vaccinated, should complete the waiver process and indicate their online-only status.
  • Submitting Proof of Vaccination or Waiver Documentation
    • Students:
      • Log into the Student Portal and navigate to the Document Center.
      • Under “COVID Vaccination Documentation,” upload proof of vaccination (a photo or scanned copy of a vaccination card showing student’s name and date of birth) or waiver documentation via the Document Center.
    • Faculty/Staff will receive a form from HR that should be returned to HR (by email or hard copy) or submitted via Teams.
  • Community members who are not vaccinated must continue to wear a face covering while indoors on campus and must also provide a negative COVID test every two weeks until changes are formally made to this written policy.
  • Per the Governor’s order, businesses other than those directly identified (transportation systems, healthcare settings, congregate care settings) are permitted to set their own rules regarding mask and vaccination policies. Students working in field sites should understand the vaccine requirements of the field site.
College Updates and Communications

How can I make sure I have up-to-date information regarding College announcements?

Updates will continue to be posted at

WJC Community members, please also make sure your contact information is up to date in the WJC Notification system:

If my friends, relatives, or my significant other have questions about this information, where should they go for information?

We ask students to remind their friends, relatives and significant others that FERPA regulations prohibit us from talking to them about students. Please direct them to our College website for updated information:

Please also see the William James College Resource Hub for information about topics of public interest. 

I am a  WJC student, faculty member, or staff member. I have a comment, or I’d like to talk about something I’ve read or heard, but I’m not sure it belongs in this FAQ. Who can I speak to?
Dean of Students Josh Cooper is available to speak with students and employees (faculty and staff). Please contact him at

Technology-General Questions

I have never taken/instructed an online class, what do I need to know?
A list of resources is included below. Support is available via the IT team for those who need it, there will also be trainings offered for faculty and students. Please check email for communications from Department Chairs.  Please also take a moment to read this information about Online Etiquette and Video Conferencing Guidelines

How do I access "Teams"? 
If you have a school issued laptop, teams should already be installed on your computer but you can also install teams on your personal computer or your smartphone. Download the app directly from here:

Who do I contact if I have a technology question?
If it is a non-urgent question, please email

For urgent support needs, please call the help desk at 617-327-6777 ext 1600. Due to anticipated call volume, we ask that you please limit calls to only questions that are time sensitive.

Can I take my workstation monitor/docking station/keyboard/mouse home with me? 
Yes. IT recommends you preform a quick cleaning before you take it, please see quick cleaning guide here:

Technology-Zoom Questions

Do I need a Zoom account to join a Zoom meeting? 
No, you don't need a zoom account to join a zoom meeting.  Only the person who is scheduling and setting a Zoom meeting is required to have a Zoom meeting account. The person scheduling the meeting will provide you with meeting login information. 

I want to use the Zoom breakout room feature but it doesn't seem to work - what do I do? 
Zoom Breakout room is a standard feature for all Pro account users (all faculty), but the ability to assign participant to each breakout room is not enabled by default.  Please contact if you need this feature enabled.

Are there Zoom resources available for instructors using Zoom to teach classes?
Yes, Zoom provides this downloadable page with "Tips and Tricks for Teachers Educating on Zoom."

Is Zoom HIPAA Compliant?

The short answer is no.  However, OCR and HHS recently has suspended the HIPAA enforcement due to current needs.  Find out more here:

If you use Zoom to connect with a client, please don't  do the following:

  1. Send or receive any files via Zoom that contains PHI
  2. Post any PHI info via Zoom chat
  3. Recording any Zoom sessions that contained any PHI information

Notification of Enforcement Discretion for telehealth

Notification of Enforcement Discretion for telehealth remote communications during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency

Related, please also see the FAQ on IRB and Face-to-Face Research 

Building and Campus

Is the building open? Can I use campus services?
The building is open to students, facuty, and staff, and for visitors by appointment. Classes are remote through Summer 2021. Please follow all posted signage. Visitors are asked to use the front entrance and sign in upon arrival. 

The building is not open to the general public at this time.  

What are the building hours?

Effective June 7, 2021, building hours are Monday through Friday 8 AM to 5 PM. Events scheduled outside of building hours must be arranged with Facilities.

Can I reserve a room for a meeting or group project?

Yes, rooms are available for reservation. Please follow allow gathering guidelines, social distancing guidelines, and the WJC mask policy. 

What cleaning protocol is in place?
In addition to the regular cleaning schedule, the WJC Facilities Team is cleaning all surfaces in the building with a disinfecting solution per CDC guidelines. Additional information is available here 

What additional health and safety measures are in place?
Please see this page for a list of safety protocols and facility updates in place during the COVID19 Pandemic to ensure a safe work environment at William James College. 

Faculty and Staff Attendance and HR Information

Work-from-home resources and guidelines remain available on the IT website. Please use resources such as Teams and Zoom to conduct  remote meetings, and please be in frequent contact with your supervisor.

Are WJC Staff required to come to campus?

  • Starting June 8, and until otherwise announced, full time staff will be required to work from campus a minimum of three days per week, and with an option of two days per week remote.
  • To ensure an availability of services, staff must include either a Monday or a Friday in their schedule of in-office days.
  • Schedules are to be determined with area supervisors and should ensure that the services of a particular team are generally/regularly covered across all five weekdays by a person working in the building.

Can I use vacation, sick time, personal days or work from home days?
Existing employee policies for vacation, personal days, and sick time remain in effect. Please see the employee handbook.

What is WJC's Telecommuting Policy for Staff?
WJC's "remote work policy" is in effect for remote work days. 

If I need help finding childcare, are there resources available?
Yes, please review this brochure to learn more about WJC's Employee Assistance Program (EAP)


Remote Work

Where can I find WJC information about remote work?
Work-from-home resources and guidelines are available on the IT website. 

How can I check my office voicemail from home? Is there a way to forward calls?
Please see "How to forward your desk phone to an external number" on the IT website. Some of this configuration must be done on-campus, for assistance please email

Student Services

What student services are available remotely?

The Dean of Students office is open and available,  staff members are available for virtual meetings. Email any member of the Dean of Students office staff or

I'm getting ready to interview for jobs, any advice?

Yes! WJC students and alumni are most welcome to schedule a career services meeting with Meridith Apfelbaum, Assistant Dean of Students and Career Coach, through CareerLink. This system serves as the vehicle for scheduling career coaching appointments and also houses job/postdoctoral listings for new and seasoned professionals, employer contacts, and an online career library. Alumni have the ability to create an account in the system and students can login using their main WJC username and password. Once in the system, click on Counseling Appts on the left nav bar and you will be able to choose an appointment date/time. Meridith will then receive a notification and send you a Zoom link for the appointment. If you are having trouble finding a time that works for your schedule in the system, email Meridith with some days/times that work for you, and she will schedule a meeting at a time that works best. Email address:

Additionally, the Dean of Students Office has published a list of 10 Tips for Online Interviews

Fall 2021 High Flex Model

What is the "High Flex" Model?

High Flex, short for high flexibility, is a model that will allow us to offer accommodations for students who wish to attend remotely on occasion, or for those who need to remain fully remote for specific classes or for the duration of the semester.

Is High Flex available to all students?

Most students, with faculty approval, can use the High Flex option. There is an exception for newly enrolled international students. New international students, due to visa regulations, must attend in-person or hybrid (and document hybrid attendance). 

Will my professors know if I have been approved for a High Flex arrangement?

Yes, faculty will receive a list of students who have an approved plan to attend remotely.

How do I request to attend remotely? 

Any plan for full remote attendance by a student enrolled in a program that is traditionally delivered on-campus must be approved by faculty. Arrangements must be made in advance. It is imperative, for record keeping purposes related to accreditation, that students file an attendance plan with their department regarding their specific need for accommodation.

Students interested in a high flex arrangement, please complete the form linked below and return it to your department chair. 

High Flex Form, Fall 2021

Online Classes - Information For Students

Will classes be online for the Summer 2021 sessions?
Classes will be held online for Summer 2021. 

How will classes take place during the Fall 2021 semester?

  • Classes in our traditional delivery programs will be delivered in person with the expectation that students attend on campus.
  • A hybrid option will be available for students who feel uncomfortable in attending traditional delivery classes in person for the Fall semester.
  • Students attending class on campus must be vaccinated and must provide proof of vaccination to the Registrars’ Office or complete required documentation for accommodation. Please see mask and vaccination policies.

What about Field Education?
Field education/experiential learning remains scheduled to occur in person, unless otherwise noted by individual sites.

When will my online class take place?
Most classes will continue to be held in a synchronous fashion (meaning, classes occurred in “real time,” live with an instructor, during their regularly scheduled timeslots). An alternate approach, that involves offering lectures and coursework that is still bound by a schedule but allows for a different pacing known as asynchronous delivery may now also be used.  Recognizing the complexity of current times, temporary adjustments were made to some policies around delivery practices, with the following changes effective March 30, 2020: 

  • Introduction to Clinical Practice and all Clinical Seminars will remain synchronous to comply with group supervision requirements from licensing and accrediting bodies. 
  • Faculty who are available to continue providing synchronous lectures will do so, and students are encouraged to join live.
    • The lectures will also be recorded, so students who are unable to join live can access them later. 
    • Faculty are responsible for recording each Zoom meeting and making it available to students. Students who have questions can send them to the instructor. 
  • Faculty who are unable to deliver a course live will post the video lecture before the scheduled class time and will provide a discussion board. 

How do I access my classes?
You will receive instructions from faculty on how to access the Zoom Meeting Room where each class will be held. It is important that you do not log in more than 5 minutes before the class begins, or you may be inadvertently interrupting another class or a meeting. Please test your connection ahead of time by going here:

How often will classes take place?
Classes offered in are offered as scheduled, for the full duration of the class (e.g., if the class goes from 1 pm to 2:50 pm, the class will run online during that time). Please take note of the first question in this section regarding synchronous and asynchronous delivery. 

Will attendance be taken?
Yes, attendance will be taken. 

What if I need to miss class?
In the event of an absence, students must notify  their instructor and their advisor. Students should be in contact with professors to make alternate arrangements if they are acutely ill, have been asked to self-quarantine by a medical professional, or suspect that they may have been exposed to the virus. No doctor's note is required. For prolonged illness, please see policies on leave of absence. 

Are there any participation considerations I need to keep in mind?
When participating in classes online, you are in a virtual classroom and you are expected to show up dressed properly and ready to participate in the class. If you are using the computer audio, please use airpods, headsets, etc. that have a microphone, and remember to mute yourself if you are not talking.

How can I meet with faculty members if I'm not traveling to campus?
Meetings may be held via Zoom. Please test your connection ahead of time by going here:

What do I do if I have trouble connecting to my class?
If you have trouble connecting to your class, or if you will be absent, you must notify your instructor and your advisor. We are not filing CANs for attendance, but we will be keeping track of difficulties in order to provide support as needed.

Have performance expectations changed?
Since academic credit will be awarded, performance expectations remain the same, the Student Handbook is still binding, and CANs for issues other than attendance will be filed if necessary.

Where can I learn more about privacy and online learning?
The U.S. Department of Education established the Privacy Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) as a “one-stop” resource for education stakeholders to learn about data privacy, confidentiality, and security practices related to student-level longitudinal data systems and other uses of student data.  Please see: Protecting Student Privacy While Using Online Educational Services: Model Terms of Service

Grades, Licensing and Academic Policies

How does the school closure impact licensing requirements?
Please reach out to your advisor or department faculty with specific questions. Here are some additional resources and information (this list will be updated as more information becomes available). 

Clincial Psychology Students, here is a website that tracks psychology licensure waivers:

School Psychology Students, on March 17 the NASP Program Accreditation Board and National School Psychology Certification Board announced that they have agreed to waive the 1,200 hour requirement for all programs and graduate students on internship during this period, requiring a minimum of 800 hours in direct, field-based supervised experiences with a minimum of 400 hours in a school setting, instead. While MA DESE ultimately controls school psychology licensure, but this is a supportive step. 

This information will be updated. 

Are there any changes to the grading policy? 
Yes, in light of the COVID-19 public health emergency the decision was made to move to a Credit/No Credit system for all classes. The intent of the change was to ease some academic burden during a period of significant societal disruption. 

Student leadership (LEAD) advocated for a continuation of this policy, and data about student preference supported this continuation. As such,  students will continue to have this choice through the Fall 2021 semester. Students will receive traditional letter grades for each class as outlined in our student handbooks unless they submit a waiver request for a credit or no credit to the registrar. The deadline to submit for a waiver for Fall 2021 is August 31, 2021.  If a student does not make a formal request by the deadline, they will receive traditional letter grades by default.

  • Students can make this determination for each course
  • Once selected, however, the option cannot be reversed regardless of the circumstances
  • If one were to take ill, a grade of incomplete would be given and when the work was completed the grading system already selected would still apply

Classes will remain remote through Summer 2021. 

Grading policies as published in the student handbook apply unless otherwise announced. 


Is the library open?
Yes. The Library is open during building hours. Please also see: Remote and Free Resources

What online resources are available?
The library's electronic resources remain available to all students, faculty and staff. Anyone having trouble accessing electronic resources should reach out to for help. 

If I need help with Library Research and Reference Services, who can I contact?
Library staff are available via email, telephone, and Zoom to provide research and reference support during all normal business hours. Please email or call 617-564-9405 for help.


IRB and Face-to-Face Research Interviews

I am  currently conducting research that makes use of face-to-face interviews and I'm considering using Zoom, FaceTime or a similar platform to conduct the interviews. What do I need  to know?

In the current health climate, face-to-face interviews may not be practical or possible. If you are still actively recruiting and interviewing research participants, you may wish to consider alternative modes for conducting your interviews.

In an email to the community, William James College IRB chair Dr. Edward De Vos said: "From an IRB perspective, in addition to mitigating the risk associated with in-person contact, I’m most concerned about the researcher being able to observe/control the environment where the interview is being conducted. If the topics are sensitive, we need to pay attention about how best to maintain the confidentiality of the interview.  This should include communication that describes the most suitable setting for conducting an online interview." 

He provided the following information: 

  • Choose a private place where you are not likely to be interrupted, observed, or overheard.  When beginning the interview, please make sure to go through an appropriate checklist with the participant to make sure the setting and conditions are appropriate.
  • IRB is creating an expedited amendment procedure to deal specifically with this issue.  If these considerations apply to your current research, please send an email to, and please copy the IRB mailbox,  In your letter requesting an amendment please include the following:
    1. Your name
    2. Your Chair’s name
    3. Your IRB protocol #
    4. The title of your project
    5. The number of face-to-face interviews you have already completed
    6. The total number of interviews you intend to complete
    7. The deadline (if any) for completing your interviews
    8. What teleresearch platform you are considering (e.g., Zoom, FaceTime, telephone) to conduct your interviews moving forward
    9. How do you intend to maintain the confidentiality of these interviews?
    10. Please submit an edited version of your informed consent that reflects these proposed changes and protections.
  • Depending on the number of projects involved, the IRB will try to review these expedited amendment requests within 3 business days.


Field Sites

I’m working at a Field Site, what do I need to know?
Students are asked to follow all Field Site policies. We are in communication with site supervisors have informed them that we have amended our malpractice policy to allow our trainees to deliver telehealth services, with supervisor training and supervision, as long as the following provisions are met: HIPAA compliant platform; supervision the same number of hours/week by a qualified supervisor; same documentation of services; qualifying supervisory backup in real time; attention to licensure of supervisor to only provide telehealth clinical services to clients in states where the supervisor is licensed.

Many of our field sites are relying on us to deliver critical behavioral health care during an emergency. As such, we continue to be guided by the leadership at Field Sites regarding students’ presence at the site. If you feel ill; are symptomatic in any way; have been asked to self-quarantine by a medical professional; have reason to suspect that you may have been exposed; or if you are living with someone who is immunocompromised or may be put at risk, please be in touch with your Field Site supervisor to communicate this. Please also see Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

Please see President Nicholas Covino's Field Education Update, dated March 20, 9 PM. 

If there are changes to my hours at my Field Site, what should I do?
Please communicate any interruptions in training to the field education department of your academic program. We understand that some students might end up with fewer hours of clinical service than planned; we will work with you to problem-solve these situations individually.

Telemental Health

What is Telehealth?
Telemental health, sometimes also referred to as Telemedicine, Telementalhealth, Telebehavioral health, Telehealth or E-Health, is counseling or client services provided over the phone or Internet.

Where can I find more information?
Visit the William James College Resource Hub for information and a helpful primer created by Dr. Bruce Ecker. 

Do you have a question? Please submit it here.