TAG Meeting Notes 2014-05-07

7 05 2014

TAG Meeting May 7, 2014 12:00pm-1:00pm

Jeremy Brees, Tim Cannon, Teresa Conte, Kim Daniloski, Dave Dzurec, Tara Fay, Jim Franceschelli, Eugeniu Grigorescu, Calvin Krzywiec (guest), Andrew LaZella, Kristen Yarmey

TAG thanks Library Dean Charles Kratz for sponsoring lunch for our meeting today.

1. BYOD Strategy Draft

Calvin Krzywiec joined us as a guest to present and discuss a draft version of IR’s strategy for accommodating the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) trend. Cal is Assistant Director of Network Security & Engineering and served as chair for the IR Strategy Group tasked with studying BYOD. The group is currently seeking feedback from campus stakeholders to incorporate into a final strategy.

Cal explained that the group’s objectives were driven by increasing demand among students and faculty for access to institutional services from personal mobile devices. The group’s top priority is supporting BYOD for teaching and learning, while a secondary priority is protecting the security of institutional data.

For teaching and learning (see p. 2-4 in the draft), IR’s BYOD objectives include:

  • Investigate and implement untethered teaching/learning solutions
  • Focus classroom upgrades on providing collaborative, flexible workspaces
  • Leverage virtual desktop/application technologies and client devices to reduce reliance on physical lab infrastructure
  • Leverage virtual desktop/application technologies to provide ubiquitous access to lab software resources
  • Investigate and implement secure electronic assessment solutions
  • Expand lecture capture to additional locations

The draft identifies several barriers to BYOD implementation that were also raised by faculty members in TAG’s informal survey on specialized software and computer labs.  These include:

  • Expensive licensing fees for specialized software
  • Potential disparities in student computer ownership
  • Inaccessible and/or limited power sources
  • Security for electronic assessment/computerized testing
  • High demand on wireless network

The draft strategy recommends partnership with CTLE to support faculty needs as well as engagement with faculty during the implementation of BYOD-related strategies. Jim said that IR will work with TAG to recruit faculty volunteers to test out tools and services. While the precise timeline for rolling out these changes isn’t yet determined, there are some pilot projects already in motion. Faculty members in KSOM are piloting software for securing a browser (for computerized testing) using lab computers running thin clients. Teresa noted that the Nursing department would be very interested in piloting computerized testing tools in McGurrin. IR also plans to pilot test untethered teaching/learning options in the fall – TAG will get more information on this in the summer. Tim volunteered to participate in this pilot. IR has already been piloting Panopto lecture capture and will be looking to add this capability to additional classrooms for Fall 2014. Mobile printing is also in process.

Regarding network and authentication issues: Cal said that IR will be replacing the Cisco NAC client with encrypted SSID authentication, so that users will be able to log in to the University network from their device without downloading and installing CNAC. Once a device has been logged in,  it will stay logged in – users won’t have to reauthenticate multiple times during the day to stay on the network.

The second half of the draft (p. 4-9) addresses faculty and staff devices. One issue addressed is primary computing devices (for most faculty, our desktop computer). While currently primary devices are purchased and provided by the University, alternative models such as reimbursement or stipends for equipment and software purchases could be discussed.

Secondly, in order to protect institutional data, the draft proposes a three-tiered mobile device management (MDM) system:

  • Mandatory: This tier applies to all University issued devices and requires an enrollment in a MDM system that enforces the implementation of technical controls on the device, such as lock code, lock when idle, remote wipe capabilities, device encryption, and potentially even location tracking for locating a lost device.
  • Optional: This tier applies to all non-­‐corporate owned staff, faculty, and affiliate devices connecting to University systems, including email. Enrollment in the MDM solution is optional but the expectations of minimal technical controls and the requirement to notify PIR of a lost/stolen device are defined in institutional policy. Employees must agree to allow the University to wipe the device when it is lost/stolen or the employee separates from the institution.
  • Exempt: This tier applies to student devices. This tier has no requirements but offers guidance to students on how to secure their devices.

The draft proposes that a remote wipe could be partial rather than complete, “removing only corporate data.”

Kristen raised concerns about the Optional tier, which would apply to many faculty-owned mobile devices. Firstly, the exact definition of “corporate data” may need to be clarified. According to Appendix VIII (“Copyright”) of the Faculty Handbook, in most (but not all) circumstances, faculty retain copyright over works created as part of their normal teaching, research, and service duties – including research data, lecture notes, videos of lectures, syllabi, etc.  Kristen will look into existing University policies and documents to better understand what types of records (email?) would fall under this policy. Kristen also raised concerns about references to wiping data (including email) upon “employee separation,” which for faculty may take different forms (emeritus, phased retirement, terminal sabbatical, etc).

The BYOD Strategy Group will be compiling feedback into the next draft of the report. Kristen will write up summarized feedback from TAG’s discussion as a formal response to the draft document.

2. Brief Updates 

(The BYOD discussion took up most of the meeting, so updates were rushed.)

Identity Finder automated scans (Kristen)

Kristen has been working with Adam Edwards and Scott Finlon in Information Security to answer faculty questions about Identity Finder automated scans. Kristen has updated the Identity Finder FAQ with clarifications from Information Security.  There are still some faculty concerns about the scanning and reporting process (which was approved by the President’s cabinet back in June 2013); however, we have addressed as many as possible.

Information Security would like to begin the automated scans. TAG members present at the meeting felt ready to move forward with scanning faculty machines. Dave will report at this Friday’s Senate meetings that scans will begin. Kristen will work with Adam to coordinate a schedule and an all-faculty email notification.

Test Scanning Services (Jim)

Jim reported that IR will be changing the hours of Test Scanning Services effective Monday, May 12, 2014.  The service will continue to be provided from Alumni Memorial Hall, Room 001. Tests may be dropped off and results picked up Monday through Friday, from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.  Based upon demand and operational requirements, immediate service while you wait may not be available.  IR will continue to strive to meet the needs of our customers and will provide a 24 hour turnaround of test scanning results.  Jim asked that faculty please plan accordingly as we approach the end of the Spring term.  Jim will contact regular users of the test scanning service with more details.

Desire2Learn (Eugeniu)

Additional Desire2Learn workshops are being planned for the summer – see CTLE’s workshop calendar for the updated schedule. Eugeniu also reminded TAG members that faculty should back up any student data (including grades, discussion forms, and dropbox submissions) in Angel that they wish to keep. Step by step instructions have been emailed out, but CTLE staff will also hold workshops on this during Senior Week for anyone who needs assistance (see ). Student access to Angel will be turned off as of May 30, but faculty will have access until July 31. After that, data stored in Angel will no longer be available.

PR Department/Program Website Initiative (Dave/Teresa)

We ran out of time for in-person updates on this project. Lori had sent Kristen updates via email. Kristen will post these notes to the TAG site in a separate update.

4. Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 1:05pm. TAG will not meet again as a full group until Fall 2014, but projects and communication (via email) will continue during the summer.

[Updated immediately after posting with correction to Cal’s title]

TAG Meeting Notes 2014-03-12

12 03 2014

TAG Meeting March 12, 2014 12:00pm-1:00pm

Tim Cannon, Paul Cutrufello, Kim Daniloski, Dave Dzurec, Tara Fay, Jim Franceschelli, Eugeniu Grigorescu, Katie Iacocca, Charles Kratz (guest), Sandy Pesavento, Kristen Yarmey

1. Lunch

TAG members thanked CAS Dean Brian Conniff for sponsoring lunch for our meeting. Dave thanked Mary Ann Maslar in the CAS Dean’s office for making the arrangements. Charles noted that he is willing to sponsor lunch at one of TAG’s remaining Spring 2014 meetings.

2. Items for Discussion


Dean of the Library and Information Fluency Charles Kratz asked to come to a TAG meeting to speak about the campus WordPress network (sites.scranton.edu), which has been a topic of TAG discussion since 2011. (In preparation for today’s meeting, Kristen emailed TAG members notes summarizing the history of the campus WordPress network as well as a justification for the academic use of WordPress that former TAG co-chair Jeremy Sepinsky had composed for IR in Spring 2013.)

At our last meeting in February 2014, we received word from Jim that IR would not be expanding support for sites on the campus WordPress network until at least 2015. Subsequently, at the February 14 Faculty Senate meeting, Senator Terry Sweeney expressed concerns about access to the campus WordPress network. There was seemingly some confusion at the Senate meeting about CTLE’s role in the WordPress network and a misunderstanding that CTLE staff were responsible for determining which requests for WordPress sites would be approved, when this decision actually rests with IR staff.

Charles (who oversees both the Library and CTLE) has since met with IR and CTLE staff in order to seek clarification on the criteria and process for WordPress site requests, as well as to ascertain whether there might be a middle ground for supporting faculty use of the campus WordPress network. Charles noted that the CTLE, while currently very busy with the Desire2Learn transition, is interested in supporting faculty use of WordPress and would be willing to support a few pilot sites in fall 2014. He suggested that TAG might identify faculty who would be interested in a WordPress pilot in the near future, and advocated for transparency for faculty regarding the criteria and process for site requests.

Prior to today’s meeting, Kristen had asked Jim for IR’s criteria for reviewing requests for WordPress sites, which she then emailed to TAG members. These are as follows:

Blogs are available to the University community to provide an area for discussion and collaboration. The following criteria will be applied to these requests:

  • Blogs can augment University web sites on www.scranton.edu which are built in the Web Content Management System (CMS). They cannot be used as a replacement for a department or organization’s www.scranton.edu site.
  • Blogs are only for University-related purposes, not personal interests.
  • Only faculty & staff members of the University community can be given access to post to the blog site.
  • All blogs will be accessible for public view access.
  • The URL for the blogs will be in the form of http://sites.scranton.edu/blogname/
  • No redirects of the form www.scranton.edu/xxxx will be set up for blogs so they are not confused with University web site(s).

Related information:

  • Desire 2 Learn (D2L), the University’s Learning Management System, has blogging functionality that can be used as part of a course offering.
  • Faculty & staff desiring to use wordpress.com for other blogging services should refer to our policy website (www.scranton.edu/pir/policies.shtml) for the Guidelines for the Use of Cloud Computing Services.

Jim noted that IR has limited resources and has to weigh what services they can support. He also explained that since this is a new service, it has taken some time to develop the criteria for what requests could or could not be accommodated. For example, individual student blogs (as one faculty member requested) could not be accommodated due to the difficulty of maintaining an accurate user list for that class within WordPress – while the campus network is integrated with Active Directory authentication, it is not integrated with Angel or Desire2Learn, so class lists must be manually added and maintained for WordPress sites. (As a side note, Charles mentioned that CTLE is working with a few faculty members to test Desire2Learn’s blogging function for student blogs. Results have not been encouraging so far, but testing continues.)

Charles and Kristen asked for clarification on the site request and decision-making process. Jim said that WordPress site requests could be submitted via Footprints (tsc.scranton.edu) and promised to add a request to the service menu within Footprints. He said that Connie Wisdo, director of IT Development & Applications (ITDA), will review the requests and make a decision based on the above criteria. If the decision is clear-cut, the response will be immediate, but if a request falls along the edge of the criteria, there might be some delay to allow IT staff members to discuss it first. Charles asked if there would be an appeal process for a faculty member whose request was denied. Jim answered that appeals could be directed to him.

Sandy asked if faculty could use third-party (external) blogging or web development sites (e.g., Blogger or WordPress.com). Jim said that faculty were free to use whatever tools they liked, on the condition that they review IR’s Guidelines for the Use of Cloud Computing Services and consider potential threats to privacy or security of students or other participants. Kristen said that as a librarian she had significant concerns about the privacy implications of requiring students to use third-party cloud services for class projects. An advantage to the on-campus WordPress network is that site data remains on campus and under University administration rather than entering the commercial data tracking and aggregation marketplace.

Tangentially, IR now offers server space to faculty and academic departments, with roles and support responsibilities enumerated in a service-level agreement. IR provides the server environment, while the faculty member/department is responsible for installing/maintaining the applications they wish to use on the server. There is a one-time licensing fee charge for this service. Kristen asked Jim for more information about this service, as TAG had been previously unaware of it.

Discussions about WordPress and related service offerings will continue. Kristen and Dave will meet with Jim and Robyn Dickinson (Interim VP for Planning and Information Resources) on Monday, March 17, and separately will meet with Interim Provost Pat Harrington and the academic Deans (date TBD). Charles suggested that, in addition to working with Jim and IR directly and reporting to the Faculty Senate,  TAG should also communicate with the Deans and Provost to keep them informed of technology needs on campus.

To further facilitate communication among all stakeholders, Katie suggested that TAG remind the Faculty Senate and the rest of the faculty to share their concerns about academic technology with TAG, such that TAG members can continue to work constructively with IR staff. Dave will include this reminder (as well as an update and clarification on WordPress) in his report to the Faculty Senate this week.

Faculty Specialized Software/Computer Lab Questionnaire

Back in November, TAG sent out a questionnaire to all faculty to ask for input on their use of specialized software, computer labs, lecture capture, and learning management systems (Angel/Desire2Learn).

Kristen apologized for the delay in sharing results, but has finally finished a qualitative summary of faculty responses, shared here for preliminary review by TAG members. Only 52 responses were received, and respondents tended to be faculty interested in software/lab issues, so the sample did not seem representative. The summary is almost entirely qualitative, so anyone interested in performing a quantitative analysis should contact Kristen for access to the full data set.

Kristen asked that TAG members review the results and identify any action steps or areas for further research. 

3. Brief Updates

Identity Finder Automated Scans

Back in April 2013, Information Security Officer Adam Edwards brought a proposal for automated Identity Finder scans to TAG for consideration. At our February meeting, Adam Edwards and Scott Finlon from Information Security came to the second half of the TAG meeting to demonstrate the administrative side of Identity Finder automated scans, which non-Mac-using TAG members have been piloting since September. They also demonstrated TrueCrypt as their recommended tool for encrypting sensitive data (including confidential human subject research data, as Adam has discussed with the IRB).  Scott has since shared step-by-step instructions for TrueCrypt, which Kristen posted to the TAG site. Update 2014-07-02: Support for TrueCrypt has been discontinued, so Information Security now recommends using 7Zip for encrypting sensitive or confidential data.

Adam and Scott would like to begin the roll-out of automated Identity Finder scans for faculty desktops, starting with departments that would be unlikely to have confidential subject data stored on their computers. Scott sent Kristen a list of departments as they appear in Identity Finder (based on Active Directory groups) as a starting point. Kristen asked at today’s meeting for TAG member volunteers who were willing to confirm their department’s readiness to begin automated scans. Dave has already spoken to the History Department, and Kristen will speak with Library faculty at their next department meeting. Kim and Paul were willing to speak with their departments (Management/Marketing and Exercise Science) but asked for some additional information that they could refer colleagues to. Kristen will write up a summary/FAQ on Identity Finder for faculty and post to the TAG site for reference.

Kristen suggested that faculty members run their own Identity Finder scans  to understand the software and results (the software is already on all faculty PCs, via KBOX). Any sensitive data can and should be encrypted with TrueCrypt. Jim reminded the group that Identity Finder also helps IT Services deal with faculty computers that have been infected by malware — a recent scan confirming the absence of confidential data makes it much easier and faster for them to clean and return the machine.

There were a few remaining questions about the automated scan process, which Kristen and Jim will review with Adam:

  • Who exactly is included in a department group? Full time faculty, adjuncts, department staff (e.g., departmental administrative assistants)? Jim believes that the groups include *only* faculty members (including part time/adjuncts), but we will confirm this with Adam.
  • Automated scans are currently scheduled in batch for Fridays at noon. What happens for faculty members who are never/rarely on campus, with their laptop, at that time? (Katie noted that this is common among KSOM faculty.) Could an alternative scan time be scheduled? Or do scans begin the next time you turn on your computer?
  • What happens if you turn off your computer during a scheduled scan? Does it pick up where it left off when you turn your computer back on?

Departments that are ready to begin automated scans should contact Kristen and/or Adam. Adam and Scott are also available to answer questions about Identity Finder, TrueCrypt, or other information security issues.

Lecture Capture – Panopto Pilot

On Wednesday, March 5, Dave and Kristen attended a meeting with Jason Wimmer, Jason Oakey, Jim and Eugeniu for an update on lecture capture and the pilots taking place in PCPS this semester with Panopto. (Full notes from that meeting, summarized here, are on the TAG site.) 

IT Services began piloting lecture capture back in Fall 2012 with two installations of MediaSite (LSC334 and LSC433). TAG members Jeremy Sepinsky and Tara Fay tested out the technology in their classes. While there were some good things about MediaSite, IT Services discovered lots of complications that would make it difficult to scale and expand across campus (see Jason’s article in the Winter 2013-2014 IT Matters for more details).

As of Fall 2013, IT Services has been working with faculty in PCPS (Counseling, Nursing, and Education – including TAG member Sandy Pesavento) to pilot a different lecture capture technology – Panopto.  Panopto is a hosted service, which makes installation faster and easier in comparison to MediaSite. IT Services set up 13 rooms in McGurrin, and already over 790 sessions/interviews/classroom scenarios/nursing simulations have been recorded. Feedback to date from faculty and students has been very positive – even enthusiastic. Sandy has been using Panopto in her education classes to record students teaching sample lessons. She invited interested faculty to visit one of her class if they would like to see it in action. (As a reminder, on last spring’s ECAR survey on undergraduate students and information technology, 63% of our student respondents said they wanted their professors to use lecture capture.)

Our current license for Panopto only covers PCPS (where the pilots were taking place), but IT Services has put in a request to the FMC for a full campus license. IT Services plans to expand access to lecture capture across campus (potentially enabling 5-6 additional classrooms next year) and to integrate Panopto with Desire2Learn. Jason Wimmer will be giving a presentation on Panopto at an IT Forum on March 27 at 11:30am – all faculty and staff are welcome to attend (please register).

PR Department/Program Website Initiative

This project is on the agenda for the next meeting of the Committee on University Image and Promotion (CUIP), scheduled for Monday, March 17 from 2pm-3pm. In addition to regular CUIP faculty representatives Terry Sweeney, Abi Roy, Jack Beidler, and George Gomez, PR has also invited TAG to send representatives — Dave, Teresa, and Sandy will be there (and maybe Kristen).

It is not yet clear which department/program pages will be in the first wave of updates, nor is it clear who will make that decision. Katie noted that from KSOM, OIM department chair Nabil Tamimi was interested in participating in a department website update, particularly since OIM is a growing program and the home of the E-Commerce major.

TAG Leadership for 2014-2015

Kristen will be rotating off as TAG co-chair at the end of Spring 2014. Dave will continue as co-chair for 2014-2015, but will be on a Fulbright sabbatical in Slovakia (congratulations!) in Spring 2015. Andrew LaZella has volunteered to serve in Spring 2015 while Dave is away, but we are still looking for someone to begin a full two-year term as co-chair. Please contact Kristen or Dave if you are interested/willing. Dave noted that, pending the results of the Faculty Senate election, we should make sure that we have a Senate liaison for 2014-2015 as well.


The meeting adjourned at 1:10pm. TAG’s next meeting will be Wednesday, April 9 from 12pm-1pm, location TBA.