Information for Current Students

Resources and information for all active students in the College of Education. Check here for information about administrative tasks, academic advising, connecting to the community, and taking care of yourself. This section of the site also includes specific sections for Undergraduate Students and Graduate Students. If you are looking for a specific office or person, be sure to check our Directory of Offices page and the People A-Z section.

headshot of Suzan Kommers

Getting Help 

If there is an immediate risk of harm: contact the Campus Police at 413-545-3111 or call 911 from a campus landline.

University Health Services - 413-577-5000, or Triage Advice Nurse at 413-577-5229

Center for Counseling and Psychological Health - 413-545-2337 

Student Life Single Stop Resources - resources to help you find the support you need to get through a challenging situation, stay in school, and graduate

The College of Education Student Emergency Fund provides immediate financial assistance for students who have encountered an unexpected financial emergency situation that may impact their ability to focus on their studies. (See below for more resources from the college.)

Academics and Administration 

Essential resources for navigating the College and the University.

The Basics

Key resources at your fingertips: 

UMass Amherst Current Student Gateway - frequently visited sites and other campus resources

Academic calendar - class schedules, holidays, important deadlines, and exam periods.

SPIRE - search the course catalog, register for classes, update personal information nd more. 

Bursar’s Office: - payment, financial aid applications, tuition deferments, and more.

Campus Pulse - events, organizations, getting invovled on campus

Getting Started Checklist

Make sure to set up the following as soon as possible when you begin your program.

  • Set up your UMass IT accounts. Your IT NetID is how you access your UMass email, SPIRE, Library resources, and other online services. The UMass IT New Student Guide gives you an overview of IT services and checklists of what you should set up right away.

  • Become familiar with SPIRE. This is the homebase for managing your student information. This is where you’ll register for courses, view grades, manage finances, and review assistantship appointments.

  • Set up your UMass Amherst GMail email account. Official communications will always be sent to your UMass email address, so remember to check it regularly if you typically use a personal account.

  • Get on the college email lists to receive official updates about opportunities, events, courses  Students should be automatically added to college-wide mailing lists when they are admitted, but get in touch with Mike Hanna mhanna@umass.edu if you have not been receiving updates. Contact your program's coordinator or department administrator about program-specific mailing lists. 

  • Get your UCard. The UCard is the official UMass Amherst campus picture identification card. It's designed to be the "one card" on campus. In addition to being your official campus ID, your UCard will also function as your PVTA bus pass, UMass Recreational Center access card, Dining Services meal card, door access card, library card, and more. 

  • FERPA Waiver: FERPA (the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) is a federal law protecting the confidentiality of student records. In compliance with FERPA, UMass Amherst must have students’ written permission in order to release information from their records to any third party, including their parents, spouse, or employer.  Use this Waiver to provide "written" permission electronically to allow a few selected designees access to relevant portions of your student record.

  • Meet with your advisor to discuss your goals and how the two of you will work together. Be sure you both have shared expectations related to communications, responsibilities, and other practical matters. Your primary advisor will be listed on your student home page in SPIRE

  • Consider what courses you plan to take, check requirements, review how often certain classes are offered, and check with your program for special requirements such as practicums or student teaching.

Academic Support

Consult the academic calendar for class schedules, holidays, important deadlines, and exam periods.

The Advising Center in the College of Education is the hub for undergraduate and graduate services to help you plan a successful course of study and answer questions you may have about courses and credits.

SPIRE is where you find and register for classes. Classes become available for registration midway through the previous semester (typically November for Spring, and March for Fall.) Plan ahead with the tentative College of Education course projections.

Add or Drop a Class through SPIRE or with the Add/Drop Form: You can add or drop classes through SPIRE during the add/drop period. If you are attempting to add or drop a class after this period, need to adjust the credit value on a variable credit course, or want to change a class to audit status, you should use the add/drop form.

SPIRE Support: SPIRE is the University's secure online student information system. Follow the link to learn how to log in to SPIRE, what SPIRE is used for, and to access support articles about using SPIRE.

The University Registrar has helpful information about registering, withdrawing, graduating, getting transcripts and more.

UMass Writing Center tutors work with undergrad, graduate, postdoc, staff, and faculty writers on any academic genre at any point in the writing process. They also have a great collection of writing and research resources.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion 

College of Education Associate Dean for Diversity:  Benita J. Barnes, barnesbj@educ.umass.edu

UMatter Resources: a one stop page for health and safety resources on campus, including bystander awareness, health centers, community centers, and legal services. 

Center for Multicultural Advancement and Student Success for social engagement, guidance in navigating the university, cultural connections, feedback on your plans for success, and to promote inclusion. Includes Josephine White Eagle, Latinx, Malcolm X and Yuri Kochiyama cultural centers.

The Center for Women and Community offers many resources for women at UMass and the Five Colleges, including a 24/7 sexual assault support and advocacy hotline, counseling and support groups, workshops, resources for teens, The Women of Color Leadership Network, and much more.

The Stonewall Center provides cultural and educational programing and support for individuals who experience harassment and discrimination based on sexuality or gender identity.

Alliance Against Ableism A community of "disabled folks and allies” who host events and online communities to have conversations around disability identity and inclusion, discuss its intersection with other identities, address ableism and barriers to inclusion and equality, and incorporate disability into larger systemic conversations and help create a campus built for all people.

The Office of Religious and Spiritual Life offers a range of educational programs, interfaith dialogue and other bridge-building activities.

Libraries and Research

UMass Amherst Libraries, find resources, borrow from other libraries, manage citations, browse research databases.

  • Education LibGuide a guide to library resources focused on Education.
  • Education Subject Specialist Librarian, Steve McGinty, maintains the Education LibGuide and is available to help students with their own education-related research. 
  • Scholarworks@UMass Amherst is a digital showcase of the research and scholarly output of members of the University of Massachusetts Amherst community.
  • Open Access, UMass has launched and participated in a number of initiatives aimed at increasing open access or more sustainable systems of scholarly communication. 
  • Special Collections and University Archives: UMass archives with focus on social justice and change. 
  • Academic Search Premier is a database for scholarly resources.
  • ERIC is a database for scholarly resources related to education.
  • Zotero is citation management software supported by the library for keeping track of research-related articles and books (includes an automatic biliography generator). 

College of Education Research

Additional Resources

  • APA Style Guide is a quick online reference for APA formatting, but ALWAYS refer to the latest edition of the APA Publication Manual for best reference!
  • Google Scholar can be useful for tracking down documents not included in the library search engine.

Technology Resources

Educational Technology (EdTech) is the college's technology support group. Contact them for help connecting to the network, using classroom AV equipment, and accessing any of the technologies in the college.

UMass Amherst IT provides support to the campus for a wide range of technology issues: network access, software help, hardware repair, and more. Be sure to check out their IT Guide for Students.

Online platforms for learning

  • Moodle is the online platform used for in-person undergraduate and graduate classes
  • Blackboard Learn is used for the fully-online classes offered through Continuing and Professional Education for certificates and Science Education Online
  • Google Workspace: Use this page for help using Google products such as Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides, and more.
  • Zoom is the preferred platform for live online classes and meetings at UMass Amherst. Log in with your UMass NetID to get more features than a typical free personal account. 

Internet Service Discounts: Use this page to find discounts on internet services from select suppliers, and tips to make working and collaborating online easier.

Software, Free and Discounted: UMass Amherst Information Technology helps students, faculty, and staff obtain free and low-cost software, and provides support for a wide range of software.

Students sitting in a group talking

Community and Wellness

Outside your academic work, make sure you connect with your community and take care of yourself. 

Taking Care of Yourself

Furcolo Hall features a Meditation Space in the lower level and a Privacy/Lactation Room on the second floor of the West wing.

College of Education Emergency Fund provides immediate financial assistance for College of Education students who have encountered an unexpected financial emergency situation that may impact their ability to focus on their studies.

Food Insecurity Assistance Information and resources for students who need assistance acquiring food.

Dean of Students Student Care Supply Closet provides free toiletries and household items to students who are facing economic insecurity and/or an unexpected financial emergency. 

University Health Services provides comprehensive medical care and promotes campus health in the broadest sense. 

Center for Counseling and Psychological Health offers individual and group counseling services.

Disability Services provides direct services for all types of disability, information and referral on issues of accessibility, and training and staff development. 

The Ombuds Office - talk confidentially and "off the record" about any campus concern, issue, or conflict.

    Connecting to the College Community

    • Check out the News and Events page for what is going on in the College of Education.

    • Watch your official UMass email address for the college newsletter, important announcements, and updates from your program.

    • Students in the College of Education are members of the following clubs and organizations 

      • Undergraduate Education Club aims to provide a platform for aspiring educators to connect with one another, engage in volunteering activities, and learn from educators in the field. 
      • Graduate Students in Higher Education (GSHE) hosts professional development, networking, and social opportunities for students interested in higher education. 
      • Outdoor Activities Club sponsors activities for students, faculty, staff and their friends and family. Past events have included ice skating, Zumba, and kickball. 
      • Student writing groups will also pop up throughout the academic year and over the summer. Keep and eye out for writing group announcements. 
    • Communication Requests: Use this form to submit news items for publication in our newsletter and on the College of Education website.

    Living in Western Massachusetts

    The University of Massachusetts Amherst serves over 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students and is located in scenic and historic western Massachusetts. Part of the Five College consortium (with Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), UMass offers a wide range of specialties, including several nationally recognized research departments. Western Massachusetts is a beautiful part of the country and an excellent place to live and be a graduate student.

      This page is made possible by contributions from students in the College of Education. If you know things that should be added, or (gulp) things that need to be fixed, send email to educcomms@umass.edu.

      Thank you!