Email me early and often! However, please note that I generally don’t respond to email on evenings or weekends. You can reach me at mposner@humnet.ucla.edu.

Class format

We are obviously meeting online this quarter. I expect there to be some rearrangement as we figure out what combination of on- and off-line work is the best fit for us. We’ll start with the following format:

  • 1pm-2pm: Discussion
  • 2-2:20: Break
  • 2:20-3:50: Hands-on work + homework review

Meeting with me

I’m always happy to meet with you. Please use my appointment-booker to grab a slot. Generally, I’m available on Wednesdays and Thursdays. If you absolutely can’t find a time on my calendar, please email me so we can work something out.

Where is the reading?

You’ll find your reading in one of two places. If it is freely available on the web, it’s linked directly from the schedule. If I can’t link to it, it will be posted in our class’s CCLE site, under the appropriate week.

How do I turn things in?

You turn things in via CCLE, using the assignment listed under the appropriate week. If for some reason you don’t see the assignment, please let me know ASAP.


We only meet once a week, so we have a lot to get done in each class! While I don’t take attendance, it’s really important you try to miss as few classes as possible.

Late work

Please let me know ASAP if you suspect a deadline won’t work for you. We can talk about it. There are a few things we’ll need to take into consideration, including whether this has become a pattern that we need to address, whether it’s realistic to meet a later deadline in addition to all other upcoming deadlines, and whether I can work a later deadline into my grading schedule.

Syllabus changes

I want to keep the class relevant to your needs and interests as they evolve, so there is some possibility that the readings or assignments may change over the course of the quarter. I will always let you know about changes as soon as I possibly can.


Zoom-based classes are new for many of us! So it’s natural that we might not share a common understanding of appropriate privacy protections. It’s important to talk about it.

I will be adhering to UCLA’s guidance on privacy in Zoom classes. Some highlights:


will be recording our discussions, so that you can go back and refer to them later. But I will not make those recordings publicly available. Instead, I’ll place them on our password-protected CCLE site, within the file for the appropriate week.

When the class divides into breakout groups, those breakout-group discussions will not be recorded.

UCLA’s guidelines forbid students from making their own recordings of Zoom meetings.

I may record text-based Zoom chats, if I want to save information for later reference. I will not share the chats publicly.

I will not record one-on-one conversations.

Your privacy on Zoom

It’s nice for me to be able to see your face during discussions, but you may turn your video off if you’re not comfortable leaving it on. (It would be helpful if you’d add a photo of yourself, or an avatar, or even your pet, so I’m not speaking to a blank screen!) You may also use a virtual background.

You may use a pseudonym on your Zoom ID. Just let me know what it is so I know who I’m talking to!

Please don’t share the link to our Zoom discussions with non-course members. We don’t want Zoom-bombers!


I take accessibility seriously. I am by no means an expert (I may need your help), but every time I teach I learn something new about how best to accommodate students. I aim to teach in accordance with universal design principles, which treat accessibility not as an add-on, but as a core function that makes the experience better for everyone.

UCLA does not make live-captioning technology available for classes unless students specifically request it through CAE. However, if you find it easier to follow captioned video, you can live-caption video by installing Web Captioner on your own computer. In addition, when I post Zoom recordings to CCLE, a transcript and captions will be automatically generated.

Here is UCLA’s recommended accessibility statement, which I endorse: Students needing academic accommodations based on a disability should contact the Center for Accessible Education (CAE) at (310)825-1501 or in person at Murphy Hall A255. When possible, students should contact the CAE within the first two weeks of the term as reasonable notice is needed to coordinate accommodations.

In addition to CAE accommodations, I am willing to work with you to accommodate other accessibility needs. Online learning is new to us all, and I will likely need your help to co-design accommodations, but I am happy to do so; just get in touch.

Life stuff

You don’t need me to tell you that these are incredibly stressful times. UCLA maintains a centralized list of resources available for students in need. UCLA Counseling and Psychological Services is open and providing all services through telehealth. You may also wish to be aware of free crisis counseling hotlines. For financial emergencies, UCLA can offer short-term loans as well as a range of other services for students experiencing economic crisis.

Many of my students have experienced crisis while in my class; you would not be the first and need not feel shame. I am not trained to, and cannot, provide counseling. But if something in your life is interfering with your ability to complete your work for me, it is very helpful if you tell me that this is the case. Together, we can develop a plan to help you successfully complete the class.