COVID-19 Technology Resources
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, William Paterson University Information Technology has created this article to assist our students, faculty and staff with information on continuing their education and working from off-campus.
How to Get Technical Support
Contacting the Information Technology (IT) Helpdesk
You may contact Information Technology by submitting a Helpdesk ticket or by calling our IT Helpdesk at 973-720-4357.
What are the Support Hours
Regular Work Week Schedule
- Monday–Thursday: 8:30AM-10:00PM
- Friday: 8:30AM-6:00PM
- Saturday: 9:00AM-5:00PM
- Sunday: On-call phone support (Priority issues left by voicemail will receive a call back within 4 hours)
The Helpdesk ticket system is monitored for new tickets during weekends and evening hours.
Resources for Employees
Information on the variety of tools available for continuing remote work are available in the Resources for Working Remotely article.
Resources (for all employees) that are covered in the article include:
- Office 365 and the variety of features that allow for online document storage, editing, and collaboration
- Online communications tools including Microsoft Teams and Webex
- How to access campus resources including WPconnect, Banner, and the K: and U: drives
- What VPN is and when it is needed
- How to access your voicemail remotely
- Other tips and tools for working remotely
Resources for Faculty & Online Instruction
For support with the use of Blackboard and Blackboard Collaborate for online instruction, visit the 'Bb 101 - Teaching Remotely' support page.
Information on support offerings for remote teaching (including details on workshops and individual consultations) is available at Support for Remote Teaching - Spring 2020.
While Blackboard Collaborate is the best solution for synchronous class meetings, we realize that not all instruction or academic interaction takes place in a class setting. We also offer the following solutions for online interactions, such as faculty office hours or small group meetings:
For additional general remote instruction resources, please visit the General Remote Instruction Information page.
Resources for Students
- For assistance with Blackboard, visit the Blackboard for Students support page.
Online Software and Mobile Apps to Assist With Coursework
- Microsoft Office 365 is available for all students.
- Office 365 provides access to online versions of Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and OneDrive cloud storage, as well as access to download a full install of Office 365 Pro Plus.
- Microsoft Office mobile apps are also available, including Office, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneDrive, and Microsoft Teams. Search the Apple or Android App stores for 'Microsoft Office' to download.
- The Microsoft Outlook mobile app provides access to your WP email and calendar.
- The Blackboard Mobile App allows access to your Blackboard courses, and the Blackboard Collaborate Mobile App allows you to join/view classes held online through Blackboard Collaborate
Access to FREE e-books
- Visit https://studentresponse.redshelf.com to gain access to eBooks at no additional charge with your @student.wpunj.edu email address. You can access up to 7 eBooks for the designated period free of charge. Use your @student.wpunj.edu email to create your account.
Software Available for Student Use on Personal Computers
The following software is available for limited use on personal computers and devices.
- Adobe Creative Cloud (available through May 31st 2020)
- Visit Adobe_Creative_Cloud for additional information on how to access the Adobe Creative Cloud products on personal devices.
- SPSS Statistics (Subscription Free trial available through June 15th 2020)
- Visit https://www.ibm.com/analytics/academic-statistical-software for a 90 day trial.
- Wolfram Mathematica|Online (Available through August 15th 2020)
- Visit Wolfram_Mathematica#Home_Use_Program for information on how to use Mathematica Online.
Resources for Acquiring Internet Access
For any student or employee in need of internet access, the following resources are available through local Internet Service Providers.
Internet Service Providers Offering Home Internet Access
- Altice USA is offering Altice Advantage 30 Mbps broadband solution for free for 60 days to any new customer household. More information at https://www.alticeusa.com/news/articles/feature/corporate/altice-usa-brings-free-broadband-k-12-and-college-students-during-coronavirus-pandemic.
- Comcast is offering free WiFi for 2 months to low income families, plus all Xfinity hot-spots are free to the public during this time. More information at https://corporate.comcast.com/covid-19.
- Optimum Online - To enroll in Optimum's free service, call 866-200-9522, ask for the sales department, and let them know you wish to qualify for the free service.
- Spectrum is offering Free internet Access for 60 days for students with homes without internet access. The Spectrum numbers are 1.844.488.8398 and 844-488-8395. More information at https://www.spectrum.com.
- Verizon is offering discount programs to qualified low income households. More info at https://www.verizon.com/support/consumer/account/manage-account/lifeline-discount.
Wireless/Cellular Service Providers Offering Mobile Internet Access
- AT&T is offering open hot-spots, unlimited data to existing customers, and $10/month plans to low income families. More information at https://www.att.com/shop/internet/access/#!/.
- Metro PCS is offering unlimited data and free 20GB hotspot access (10GB per month for 2 months) to existing customers. For more information, visit https://www.metrobyt-mobile.com/ongoing-updates-covid-19#customers.
- Sprint is providing unlimited data to existing customers and will allow all phones to enable hot-spots for 60 days at no extra charge. More information at https://www.sprint.com/en/landings/covid-19.html?INTCID=HPB:ALL:ALL:COVID19:LP.
- T-Mobile is providing plus unlimited data to existing customers and will allow all phones to enable hot-spots for 60 days at no extra charge. More information at https://www.t-mobile.com/brand/ongoing-updates-covid-19?icid=MGPO_TMO_P_CUSTSUPT_K49SR0SE1EB2Z9F6E20091_HP#customers.
Additionally, the recently announced FCC agreement states that providers will waive late fees, not cutoff service for lack of payment, and provide publicly available hot-spots during the pandemic crisis.
Resources for Students Without Computers
For students who do not have computers at home, Information Technology has a limited inventory of computers, primarily desktops, for home use for the remainder of the Spring Semester 2020. These computers are intended for individuals who do not have their own devices and are in need of a hardware solution to complete coursework during the period that the University is delivering courses at a distance.
The computer loan program has limited availability and priority will be given to students with both an academic and financial need (based on Financial Aid criteria review.)
To submit a request for a computer, please fill out the Computer Loan Program Request form. Applications will be reviewed as they are received.
Please note: Laptop computers will work with WiFi, but Desktop computers will require a home internet router with an Ethernet port. Please respond appropriately as you fill out the request form.
For students who have both the means and interest in purchasing a low-cost computer, several computer vendors have low cost options available:
- Dell Outlet - https://www.dell.com/en-us/dfh/shop/dell-refurbished/cp/outlet
- Lenovo Outlet - https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/outletus