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The MMLAB Consultant’s Standard Procedures Manual
As with anything, if any of this is unclear, please ask for an explanation!
One of the most valuable resources that the Multimedia Lab has to offer is the Consultant. Consultants also serve as liaison to the Lab Managers, the Instructional Technology Group, and the Scholarly Technology Group in order to increase the lab’s potential and meet faculty and student needs.
Outside of individual shifts, consultants are required to attend the mandatory shift scheduling and orientation sessions. If you have missed the basic training sessions, take the initiative to get oriented. You may attend training sessions in various software applications offered by your fellow Consultants. These tutorials will help answer student questions and give a better understanding of the multimedia labs' capabilities. Consultants are expected to maintain a GURUSHIP, and develop advanced knowledge within a multimedia category, or specific program(s). Consultants will also offer tutorials in their respective Guruships. They can teach the basics to their consultant and student peers and also be available through email if lab users have more in-depth questions. Consultants are expected to pursue their own work during the semester and actively promote their art to the Brown community. They should use the university and each other as resources to increase the presence of electronic art within and outside the Brown Community. Consultants will develop and maintain content on the MML website and online gallery (http://www.brown.edu/mmlgallery/). These, and other responsibilities not described in this manual -- such as maintenance of student multimedia art shows in the MML spaces – allow the Multimedia Lab Consultant to enrich the learning and creative experience at Brown.
In the beginning of the semester, consultants sign up for approximately 10 hours of work divided evenly between the List and Grad Center Labs. We ask that you take one opening shift, closing shift, or weekend shift. Consultants are responsible for accurately recording their own hours on a time sheet in a Time Log binder located on the Consultant Desk. The MML Managers need to see that the hours you report not only correspond with the Consultant schedule, but add up for the day with other logged shifts.
As of January 2008, the starting payrate is $8.50. Consultants will receive a paycheck in their mailbox every two-week pay period. You must show appropriate original identification (facsimiles and color scans are not accepted) to Edrex Fontanilla, and fill out the necessary forms (I9 form, SPAF) before you can be paid.
More information about the Controllers Office:
Check the Controllers Office website for paydates:
We strongly encourage you to take advantage of Student Direct Deposit, to avoid the loss of checks:
PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT SOMEONE WILL MAN YOUR SHIFT: During the hours that it is open, the Lab must always be manned by a Consultant. Do not leave users in the lab unattended. Do not leave the lab unattended with the door open. If a Consultant is late or suddenly cannot make the next shift, the consultant on duty should take advantage of the contact list in the Time Log binder. Call each Consultant on the contact list. If a consultant cannot stay for the subsequent shift and no one else can substitute, they should call Edrex Fontanilla or Ed Huff, the MMLab Managers. At that point, the lab will most likely be closed. If a consultant knows of a conflict in advance, they should post their shift to the Mailing list and find a substitute as soon as possible.
MMLab Consultant Blog Guidelines
At the beginning of your shift, check the Consultant Blog for updates. The Consultant Blog can be accessed by clicking on the hidden link – a blue dot to the right of the header “Multimedia Lab @ Brown” on the main page of the MML website:
The direct link to the Consultant Blog is:
• Pick a page topic(s) that will be relatively easy to keep maintained for the year, given your MML fields of interest / expertise. Your task is to develop content for that page topic, and keep it updated throughout the year.
• Are there new events, revisions that need to be made? Please make those changes within 24 hours of being notified.
• Has there been a software updates, and if so, what are the new features? (Do the MMLab Managers know about the updates?!?)
• Are there software bugs to watch out for? Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Feel free to consult manuals, tutorials, and documentation already out there to aid you.
• Ask lots of questions early in the game! Ask Edrex, ask Ed, ask the Web Guru, ask other Consultants, ask Faculty, ask Students,
• What are some related Frequently Asked Questions that your fellow Consultants encounter? These questions should be addressed on your page.
• What’s the best way to organize your information, so that it can be easily scanned by the viewer?
• What are your concerns? (i.e., Do you have so much content that your topic should be reformatted within the MMLab Website?) Voice them!
• Have your content completed and available, preferably before the end of the third week of classes. Work closely with the Web Guru.
• Remember that the earlier in the semester that your content is completed, the better! You’ll be busy during midterms and finals.
OPENING THE GRAD MMLAB
During the weekdays, consultants should enter through the Summer Studies main door. On Thayer Street, walk south past the steps (with Spiral Staircase) towards Power Street. Take the wheelchair accessible ramp on your right and into the Grad Center Complex. Straight ahead, you will walk through a set of 2 doors, which will bring you into the office space. Take two rights, and walk towards Edrex's cubicle space. To your left as you enter Edrex’s cubicle are keys attached to a lanyard and carabineer, and hanging on a coat hook. One of these keys will open the wooden "dungeon" door (it squeals when you open it!) that leads into the Grad Center Multimedia Lab.
The door to the Grad Center Multimedia lab is directly opposite to the Edrex’s cubicle. Let yourself in, turn on the lights (light switch is between the white shelves behind the Consultant desk, and open up the front MML door. Verify that the outside door is open. If not, use the hex key (located behind the Consultant Desk, on a white shelf) to open the outside door. (Depress the bar down with your hand, insert the hex key into hole next to bar, turn, and if the bar stays depressed when you let it go, you’re all set.)
During the weekend, consultants must call Public Safety (x33322) and have them open the MMLab doors. At the beginning of the academic year, the list of student Consultants is submitted to the Department of Public Safety.
HOW TO CLOSE THE GRAD MMLAB:
If you are leaving, make sure that no one is in the Multimedia Lab.
1) Verify that the projector is off, and the classroom door is closed and locked.
2) Shut off the video monitors (the 4 TVs mounted above the video editing computer towers). Shut off the audio rack using the Master Power Switch.
3) Tidy up the lab. Return chairs to their respective workstations. Is there equipment missing? Report missing equipment to Edrex immediately.
4) Shut off the MMLab lights (switches found in the bookshelf behind Consultant desk)
5) Close lab door. Make sure it is locked behind you.
6) Leave, and get home safely using Shuttle/Escort (Escort number is x31778).
*A warning:* On Fridays, sometimes there is a grad social around 5:00pm. (If you see them bringing in cases of beer, you'll know!) Close the lab door promptly at or just before 5:00. You'd like to avoid any potential problems that arise from combining state-of-the-art technology and beer.
OPENING THE LIST MMLAB
During the weekdays, the MMLab door should be open by 10 am if Ed is there, knock if it is closed. If Ed does not respond or isn’t there, the guard on the first floor (weekends), and Phyllis in room 222 (weekdays) will have keys. Prop the door open and turn on the lights. During the weekend, consultants must get the key from the guard on the first floor to open the lab. Remember to return it after the door is unlocked.
HOW TO CLOSE THE LIST MMLAB:
1) Shut off the video monitors (the 4 monitors mounted above the video editing stations).
2) Shut off equipment in the rack in the classroom.
3) Shut off all printers in the printing room.
4) Tidy up the lab. Return chairs to their respective workstations. Is there equipment missing? Report missing equipment to Ed immediately.
5) The MMLab door should be locked. If it is not, contact the guard on the first floor (that number is x37165.) Otherwise, consultants should close the door behind them as they leave.
6) Get home safely using Shuttle/Escort (Escort number is x31778).
Answer student questions and/or inform them how they can go about answering it themselves. When questions are too difficult, the consultant on duty should post questions to the Consultant Blog. E-mail another consultant who is most proficient with the specific software. IT IS NOT the duty of the consultant to teach a whole program to a student during their shift. If a student keeps asking basic questions, they should be informed of the tutorials geared specifically towards teaching the fundamentals of the software.
REPORT MALFUNCTIONING HARDWARE
Record hardware malfunctions in the Consultant Blog so the MML Managers are aware of such issues and can fix them in a timely fashion. Describe the problem and be very specific! Include error messages, write down what the user was doing when the problem was identified, and specify exactly which computer(s) exhibited the symptoms.
A consultant must always man the lab in order to deter theft and damage. Obviously a consultant will leave their desk to answer questions and run to the lavatory, but they are encouraged to keep an eye out. Students don't need to go under the tables or manipulate plugs for any reason; therefore it should always be discouraged. Consultants should also protect the expensive hardware from mistreatment. Sometimes students think a floppy disk really will fit in a zip drive if only they try hard enough. Watch over and assist new users. Also watch over frustrated students during finals period. When people are stressed and their files mysteriously disappear, things can get very ugly. Intervene when users are abusive to the equipment. (For instance, stop a user from banging the mouse on the LCD monitor.)
NO FOOD in the Multimedia Lab or the Multimedia Classroom.
The telephone is for faculty and consultant use only.
MAKE SURE THAT THE CLASSROOM IS CLOSED WHEN THERE IS NO CLASS MEETING. If a class isn't meeting during your shift, the classroom should stay closed. If a class meets during your shift, you are responsible for checking to see that, at the end of the class, the lights, computer, projector, and audio rack are shut off, and that the classroom door is closed and locked. (The List Classroom does not lock.)
MMLAB Book/Equipment CHECK-OUT: If someone wants to take out a book from the MMLab Library or a stylus for the Wacom tablets, ask for his or her Brown ID. Place their Brown ID in the Box (labeled “Brown ID”) on the Consultant Desk.
KNOW AND CARRY OUT THE MMLAB VIDEO EDITING GUIDELINES AND PROCEDURES.
When a Media Drive Volume is full, delete render files first. If more disk space is needed, sort files by date modified, and delete the oldest files. After copying files on the desktop or on the Video Editing Volume to the Media Drive Volume, those files can be deleted. Users should not store any of their content on the Desktop or Video Editing Volume. If you have any doubt about this ask a Lab Manager.
ENFORCE the rules outlined in the Desktop background image. It is your job to know and enforce these rules.
When all is quiet and running smoothly in the lab, consultant should use the time to get up to speed on their software. This involves learning new features or versions in anticipation of potential problems that arise with newly released software.
Once a consultant has met all of the required duties described above, they are more than welcome to focus on their work, check email, etc...Posted by efontani at September 1, 2005 04:46 PM