Overview for Program Directors

Academic programs in the mathematical sciences are encouraged to utilize MathPrograms.Org if they are interested in receiving program applications electronically. There is an annual fee for using the service. Registering at any time buys you 365 days of service, and the ability to conduct up to seven application sets; for instance, if your department runs a summer program, a conference, plus a small travel grant program, only one account is needed. Registration may be made by choosing New Program and following instructions for setting up the payment and choosing a password. Only one registration per academic department or company unit is required; the appropriate staff and faculty can be given access to the system by the original registrant, without additional cost. The original registrant is a group manager; all subsequent login identities are either additional group managers or faculty. The faculty role is intended for those who need to read and rate the applications; they need not be resident in the department.

Registered program institutions can utilize the following options:
  • Post program applications using the NewProgram screen. (Most group manager functions are grouped under the Admin menu). For each application received, you can count on seeing answers to some standard questions on the "cover sheet" which each applicant is required to complete when he or she registers (don't duplicate these questions on your application), and the program description itself can be pasted in. Program Directors are able to create additional questions for the applicants. They also choose which additional documents will be required, and can designate that particular materials should be sent online or by mail. Program Directors can set a deadline, set dates bewtween which the application is viewable to applicants and, later, update each listing as withdrawn, filled or finished. This is done by choosing Edit on the Programs screen. (Finished will make the list of applicants for that program disappear, but the program listing itself will remain viewable within the department.)

  • In addition to selecting required documents (for instance, resume) programs can choose the number of reference letters required for the application. They can set a minimum and maximum number of letters accepted. Applicants are responsible to name the references on their coversheet, and utilize the "email" button they will find there to send the reference writers a confidential password needed for uploading the letter. Reference writers should be uploading their own letters; all the applicants will see is a date that a letter was successfully submitted.

  • Program Directors review applications received for each program by regularly consulting their List of applicants. They can mark each applicant as complete when processed. This will not change anything else about that application on the system. Applicants can be sorted by clicking on a column heading to sort based on that field. For instance, sorting by Last Updated will put applicants in order by the last time they updated their application materials. The Search screen allows searching among all current applicants. For instance, once faculty enter ratings for applicants, a search can be done to produce a list of all who received a certain rating, or, all applicants for a certain program can be sorted according to the rating. Applicants can also be looked up by certain details such as a reference writer's or advisor's name, or by degree institution. A search can also be done based on answers to a special question asked by the program institution. For instance, if you ask a question (using the Config screen, or the NewProgram screen) about which research topic an applicant is interested in, a search can be made on the answers.

  • Examine or print each application by clicking on the name in the List or after a Search. On the screen that comes up, you can access different versions of all materials received, and also the reference letters received. To print out a full application, choose the PDF or All links in a box near the top next to the address field. There are boxes to mark that application Processed or Complete. Reference letters or other materials can be marked as received if they came in on paper, and, after resubmitting the form with an item marked as received, the opportunity will appear to upload a scanned or other version of that document from your desktop, if desired. When faculty members log in and read an application, there will be boxes on the screen for submitting a rating or comments, if desired. When staff members log in and examine applications, there will be a log field.

  • To make the candidate selection process more electronic, program directors will want to utilize several key features in the system.

    • Config is where you add other faculty and staff members to your group registration, giving them access to the applications. You can also edit the information you entered about your department, for instance, the Any Info About Your Dept/univ field which will appear adjacent to your program listings on the screens viewable by the applicants (often used for a picture). To add faculty or staff, type the email address : password. To change a password, type the new one in at the end of the line following the second colon or, just leave out everything after the email address on that line, submit the screen, and passwords will be emailed automatically. Config also is where program directors list extra questions to be asked for EVERY program, such as asking for courses taken, or an essay describing an applicant's interests. For questions to be used in only one of the department's programs, add those to the "New Program" screen or, later, the program "Edit" screen.

    • NewApp allows program institutions to enter the name and email address of those applicants whose materials came in on paper. Checking the Email? box there will generate an automatic email invitation to that applicant suggesting that they enter the system and need to fill out the coversheet form, and also apply there for your program (this is the way to get them onto your List.) There are no fees for applicants. You can view all those you've added to your NewApp list by choosing NoCover. Once the applicant enters the system and applies for your program, the name will appear on your master List.

    • Download data onto your own computer in two ways:

      • Labels is where you select fields for downloading onto your own computer, for use in producing labels, lists or merge letters from your own software.

      • Snaps allows you to download, in one zip file, all current application materials. You can store this large file on your own computer system for safekeeping or viewing. It's best to do a snapshot when the selection is done and you need to store a record of the applications for a few years. The screen will tell you when previous snapshots were taken. There is a limit on how many snapshots may be stored on this system; eventually you may need to download and delete a snapshot before you can make a new one.

    • The EEO screen shows you a summary report based on the EEO questions you may have added to all applications on the Config screen. Only summary results are available, individual responses are not viewable to group managers or faculty. The system allows you to set up an EEO officer (NOT a current program director or faculty) to drill down in the EEO data.

    • Mail helps you send emails to a select group of applicants at one time. Selecting from the various criteria presented on the screen will fill in the Recpts field. Although you may select numerous applicants at once, mathprogrammessages are actually sent individually. At the bottom of the screen, your previous group messages are listed.

    • News lets you post announcements for particular sets of users within your dept or your applicants which will appear on their main screens when they log in. For instance, you can tell all faculty when the deadline for turning in ratings is.

    The Demo Server accessible from the main MathPrograms.Org screen can be utilized by the general public, and offers all the same functions as the real server. Try out all the features of MathPrograms.Org system by logging in as different users (see the main page there for login info), but please do not enter any real data there.

    Questions and comments can be sent through the Contact Us page or to mathprograms@ams.org. You may also call the AMS at: 1-800-321-4267, ext. 4096.

For more info, please see the User Documentation.

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