Covid-19 Updates

Find the latest departmental information on the Covid-19 here!

Update: April 9th, 2020

û Accountable Advances – No longer processed

Contact person: Nazma Shahria, nazma.shahria@utoronto.ca

Accountable advances are commonly used as a cash advance to researchers to allow them to pay participant fees. An upfront payment is made to the researcher from the PI’s grant and the account is settled after 3 months. That is, any unspent money needed to be returned to the front office and if the costs exceeded the amount of the advance, the grant would be billed for the additional costs. Since this process relies on cash or cheque payments, we can no longer initiate new cash advances. Similarly, any cash advances that were issued prior to the office closure must be settled once we re-open.

Once the office re-opens, we will settle any outstanding accountable advances. If this applies to you, you must:

  • Bring in your original receipts
  • Sign any forms with an original wet-ink signature

ü Participant Payments – Processed as Expense Reimbursements

Contact Person: Nazma Shahria, nazma.shahria@utoronto.ca

Without the ability to obtain cash advances, many of you have asked how study participants should be compensated for their participation in your research. The best way to do this is to use PayPal, e-transfer or e-gift cards as forms of participant payment. These payments are not allowable on your P-cards, so the researcher must pay out of pocket and submit an expense reimbursement form to recover the funds. We will process the expense reimbursements as soon as possible, but please ensure that all supporting documents are submitted to avoid any delays in processing your claim.

Your supporting documents need to show the following:

1. Proof of payment. You will need to provide:

  • E-receipts for e-gift cards, or e-copies of the e-transfer or PayPal transaction

              AND

  • E-copy of the bank statement or credit card statement showing the transaction. The statements may be redacted, but the name of the account holder and the relevant transactions must be visible.

2. Proof the payment was received by the participant. You will need to provide:

  • E-receipt for the payment, digitally signed by the participant

             OR

  • E-confirmation that the participant that accepted the e-transfer or PayPal payment

For all participant payments:

  • The payee name should match the participant’s name.
  • The specific research study must be indicated.

The screenshot below is the official guidance from Financial Services regarding participant payment.

ü Expense Reimbursements – Processed with E-Approvals and E-Receipts

Contact Person: Angelica Angeles, a.angeles@utoronto.ca  

We are continuing to process expense reimbursements. Please see Office spreadsheet iconReimbursement Template.xls for instructions and the expense reimbursement template.

There are two main changes to our usual procedure:

  • Submit e-receipts. Please ensure that your scanned copy or photograph is of high enough resolution to be readable. Please keep the original receipts.
  • E-approval is required.

Once the office re-opens:

  • Submit the original receipts.
  • Provide a wet-ink signature on the expense reimbursement form.

ü Invoices – Processed with E-Mail Approvals

Contacts:

For most grant-related invoices: Josephine Domingo, domingo@psych.utoronto.ca

For CFI-related, fMRI and departmental invoices: Brenda Chow, chow@psych.utoronto.ca

Please continue forwarding e-invoices to your usual contact person. We will request email approval to pay the invoice and confirm the account to be charged. Your original ink signature, as well as any packing slips, will be requested once the office re-opens.

û Purchases – Not Processed Unless Urgent

Contact: Brenda Chow, chow@psych.utoronto.ca

As mentioned in a previous announcement, no new purchases should be made, as the office is not open to accept shipments. However, if you require any goods or services to continue your research remotely or to support working from home, please contact me to determine the best way to place the order.

March 18th, 2020 Update

ProcurementAt this time, we have been advised that all purchases should be suspended. Only urgent purchases that are required to maintain critical operations will be permitted. For urgent purchases, the uSource website has this advice: “The individual placing the order must ensure that a University representative will be available at a campus address to accept the delivery.  The supplier also needs to be notified that buildings will be locked and to ensure that delivery arrangements have been confirmed with the requestor.  Off campus deliveries are not permitted.”

Please submit your completed PDF iconCredential Agreement-ToNI_CBTC.pd f to Danny Fee at info@psych.utoronto.ca
 
March 17th Update
After today, all UofT buildings will be accessible by fobs only. If your fob has expired, please contact info@psych.utoronto.ca to request reactivation. When requesting a reactivation, please provide your fob number, UTORID and student number/personnel number and copy your PI on the email for approval. Reactivations for the fMRI facility or for any exterior doors to Sidney Smith or Ramsay Wright can be done remotely, but programming for access for interior doors is done in person, at the Psychology office. If you don’t have a fob, but need one, please contact info@psych.utoronto.ca to request a fob access form. After following the usual approval process, we will ensure that you can pick up the fob directly from the Security, located at 21 Sussex Ave.

Dear All –

I wanted to get in touch with all of you (figuratively!) to thank you for your commitment and your patience. We are facing the most significant health crisis in recent memory and we are all concerned about how this situation surrounding COVID-19 is going to evolve.

In order to keep everyone safe and discourage foot traffic in the building, the Psychology main office will close its doors on Friday, March 20th, at 1pm, until further notice.

By now, we all have switched our courses, tests, and exams from in-person to online. Many of us had to change their marking schemes, design new assignments, record online classes, and hold online office hours while their children were out of school or daycare or they had to self-isolate out of a fully-justified abundance of caution. I am not going to pretend that any of this has been easy. I am also not going to pretend that there is an easy roadmap ahead of us. But I do want you to know that we are here to help. Brenda, Ashley, and I will monitor our emails and please do not hesitate to contact us:

Any questions related to undergraduate teaching, please contact Ashley:

waggonerdenton@psych.utoronto.ca

Any questions related to administrative issues, please contact Brenda:

chow@psych.utoronto.ca

Any questions related to IT support, please contact:

psych.helpdesk@utoronto.ca

We will be in touch next week with some contact information and guidance on outstanding financial transactions (ie expense reimbursements, accountable advances, invoices etc). Information about payroll for casual employees and the work study program will also be communicated as needed.

Any questions that do not fall into any of the above categories, please contact me:

ferber@psych.utoronto.ca

We do our best to get back to you as soon as we can. I am sure many of you have questions regarding the future, what the impact of the current situation will be on the next academic year. The honest answer is that we don’t know. We will deal with it when the time is right. But we do know that we all care deeply for each other and our students, so I am sure we will find solutions that are in everybody’s best interests. We haven’t received any indication that academic processes will stop, so many of you will receive emails regarding promotions and reviews and PTR. If you have any questions about this, please contact me.

We will spend the rest of this week trouble-shooting issues related to internet access, working from home, and ensuring that students have all the information they need to complete the semester.

I would like to take this opportunity to extend a special thank you to Ashley, Brenda, and our IT team who have all worked tirelessly to ensure that the transition to online teaching and working from home can proceed without any major hurdles.

As this situation evolves, we will continue to do everything to serve you and the Department. Stay home, stay healthy, and stay connected. While we are coming together by staying apart, we can still look out for each other.

All the best,

Susanne

Dear Colleagues, we have recently received some updates that I’d like to share with you.

Procurement

At this time, we have been advised that all purchases should be suspended. Only urgent purchases that are required to maintain critical operations will be permitted. For urgent purchases, the uSource website has this advice: “The individual placing the order must ensure that a University representative will be available at a campus address to accept the delivery.  The supplier also needs to be notified that buildings will be locked and to ensure that delivery arrangements have been confirmed with the requestor.  Off campus deliveries are not permitted.”

Packages in Transit

Mail that has been sent via Canada Post or by internal mail continues to be processed through UofT’s central mail facility and, for now, this is being delivered to Sidney Smith. Any packages or mail that is usually sent by a private delivery service (eg UPS, FedEx, Purolater etc) will not be delivered as the loading dock doors are locked. If you are expecting a package, please contact the person who placed the order for you to determine the package’s status. Our expectation is that packages will be retained or returned to the vendor until Sidney Smith re-opens to the public. However, this should be confirmed with the supplier.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Take care and stay safe and healthy.

Dear Colleagues,

In light of the recent announcement from the Provost’s office, most of the administrative staff will be working from home for the remainder of the week. We understand, however, that you may need in-person support as well, so the office will remain open with reduced hours of 10AM – 4PM and will be minimally staffed (Brenda and Susanne) from Wednesday March 18 – Friday March 20.

For now, email is the best way to reach us. We are working on switching our office phone numbers to operate at home, but this is not yet in place.

If you require IT support, please contact psych.helpdesk@utoronto.ca. This email will be monitored by our IT group during our usual business hours, 8:45AM – 5PM. If you have not already done so, I recommend installing Microsoft Teams on your computer. This program has an option to share screens and give control of your computer to someone else. This will allow the IT team to more easily diagnose and resolve computer issues. Instructions on how to install and use Teams is attached.

After today, all UofT buildings will be accessible by fobs only. If your fob has expired, please contact info@psych.utoronto.ca to request reactivation. When requesting a reactivation, please provide your fob number, UTORID and student number/personnel number and copy your PI on the email for approval. Reactivations for the fMRI facility or for any exterior doors to Sidney Smith or Ramsay Wright can be done remotely, but programming for access for interior doors is done in person, at the Psychology office. If you don’t have a fob, but need one, please contact info@psych.utoronto.ca to request a fob access form. After following the usual approval process, we will ensure that you can pick up the fob directly from the Security, located at 21 Sussex Ave.

Our finance group has been set up to process payroll, invoices and other financial transactions remotely. Until we are back into the office, please email us with your request. At this time, we will request email approval to process the transaction. Do not digitally sign the invoice; we will ask for these to be signed with your original signature later on. Information about casual employees and casual timesheets for future pay roll periods will be communicated by Angelica next week.

We will do our best to continue to provide the services you need, but may run into challenges as we navigate what is required by policy and what is practical. Thank you for your patience as we adjust our internal procedures.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

If you are feeling sick or are self-isolating, please let us know.

Please stay safe and healthy. And stay in touch – figuratively speaking. As trite as it sounds, we are all in this together and if you need help, let us know.

If you require IT support, please contact psych.helpdesk@utoronto.ca. This email will be monitored by our IT group during our usual business hours, 8:45AM – 5PM. If you have not already done so, I recommend installing Microsoft Teams on your computer. This program has an option to share screens and give control of your computer to someone else. This will allow the IT team to more easily diagnose and resolve computer issues. Instructions on how to install and use Teams can be found in this document: PDF iconDownloading and Screen Sharing on Teams.pdf
 

Dear Researchers,

Hope you are doing well and staying safe during this time of social distancing and staying at home.

You will notice that the Department of Psychology has transitioned over to SONA for the Summer semester to conduct studies. Some of you have used SONA before. Mike Markovich sent out an email on April 3rd, 2020 regarding the replacement of PSYNUP on SONA. The new website for OMT and Studies will be https://utsgpsych.sona-systems.com.

Some notes about SONA Accounts:

Researchers: All non-Faculty members of UTSG Psychology who plan to use the PSY100 pool

  • There will be many accounts to setup as we setup the site for the first time. To streamline the
  • process, Mike will be creating Researcher accounts in batches. Just use this request form.
  • Sona uses your UTORid/password to login
  • Anyone at UTSG Psychology can have an account, including undergraduate students from 2nd Year onward. 
  • Researchers can integrate outside surveys and studies.  Integrated options are listed here: http://www.sona-systems.com/help/

Please connect with Mike Markovich (mike.markovich@utoronto.ca) if you would you are having issues relating your account.

OMT on SONA:

Creating and Submitting OMT Questions

This process has been streamlined: create an Online Internal Survey Study.  Name the study "OMT Questions - [Lab Name]," include your PI in the drop down menu, and leave other settings at defaults.  Then add questions as you normally would (see guides linked below). I will be able to see and import those questions to the OMT. 

Sona Knowledge Resources

Sona Master Documentation (PDF)

Researchers Tutorial Video (YouTube)

Please submit your questions to SONA no later than end of day on April 30th, 2020. The OMT is scheduled to open on the afternoon of May 7th, 2020 and will run until May 10th, 2020. Please contact me if you have any questions: psy100pool@psych.utoronto.ca.

The process for PSYNUP Studies remains the same. If your study can be conducted remotely (online surveys, quizzes etc…), please follow the instructions below:

PSYNUP Studies:

  1. Please list your study on the SONA website:
  2. Please submit all the documents for any new studies with the study #:
  • a copy of the approval form for your study from the Human Ethics Committee
  • a copy of the Participant Consent Form approved by the Human Ethics Committee
    • if recruiting participants by phone or email,
  • a copy of your phone/email script approved by the Human Ethics Committee
  • a copy of your Ethics approved Debriefing Letter
  • a copy of the six questions and answers
  • the Checklist, with Part I, II and III  filled-in. The checklist is available here.
  1. Please ensure you create the study on SONA.
  2. After receiving approval of these studies, they will automatically open on the afternoon of May 14th, 2020.

PSYNUP is scheduled to open on afternoon of May 14th, 2020 and will run until June 16th, 2020. Please contact me if you have any questions: psy100pool@psych.utoronto.ca.

If anyone has questions about how to use the site, please review the documentation above to see if your answer is there. If not, please reach out to me or Mike Markovich with your questions.

All the best recruiting participants this semester!

Documents:

PSY 100 Pool Summer Checklist.PDF iconPSY100 Pool Checklist Summer 2020.pdf

Additional information on the PSY100 Pool for the Summer 2020 semester can be found here: https://www.psych.utoronto.ca/resources/department-resources