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RA/RD Information Brochure

  1. Installation
  2. Dialing Instructions
  3. Telephone Features
  4. Commonly Reported Problems
  5. Common Dialing Problems
  6. Fraud & Abuse

Installation

Your telephone should have touch tone capability and include the # (pound) and * (star) keys.  Locate the jack in your room (there may be multiple jacks in your room but only one of them will be activated), plug in your telephone and test for dial tone.

If you have problems with your telephone, (i.e., no dial tone, cannot call in or out, cannot hear or be heard, noise or static) the problem could be with the telephone itself or it could be that you have your telephone plugged into the wrong jack.  Search your room for additional jacks, then plug in your telephone and test for dial tone.  To determine if the problem is with your equipment, unplug your telephone and plug in a telephone that is known to be working (borrow a neighbors' phone).  If that telephone works, then there is a problem with your telephone, NOT the telephone wiring.  If you still are unable to get your telephone to work properly after performing the actions above, you will need to put in a work request at your residence hall to have your telephone jack checked and replaced.  If this does not resolve the problem, call 692-6000 and report the problem so that a telephone technician can be dispatched.  Please note that you may be billed a service charge if the telephone technician finds that the problem is with your equipment, the jack or is user related.  

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Dialing Instructions

On Campus - Dial the last five digits of the telephone number.  Example: 692-XXXX dial 2-XXXX

Off Campus/Local (804) Virginia - Dial 9 + seven-digit telephone number

Toll Free (800, 888, etc.) - Dial 9 + 1 + toll-free code + telephone number

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT SOME TOLL-FREE NUMBERS MAY CARRY CHARGES.  Although most toll-free numbers to businesses carry no charges to the caller, some may try to set up a personal identification number (PIN) for you.  These calls will be converted to 900 numbers and charges will be assessed to you.  Please note that 700 and 900 numbers are restricted from on campus telephones.  You will NOT incur any charges for VALID toll-free calls.  

Calling Card Calls - Dial 9 + 1 + calling card access telephone number. Then dial the telephone number (including the area code) that you are calling.  Calling cards are required to place the following types of calls:

  • Operator 
  • Extended Area/Community Choice (Petersburg, Hopewell, etc.)
  • Long Distance
  • International
  • Directory Assistance

BEFORE MAKING A SECOND CALL, ALWAYS HANG UP COMPLETELY BEFORE DIALING. To ensure prior call disconnection, place your telephone in the cradle or hold down the switch hook for 10 seconds or more to disconnect previous call.  Long distance calls that are not disconnected prior to placing second call will continue to incur charges.

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Telephone Features

Call Waiting - Indicates a second incoming call.

  • After hearing the Call Waiting tone, press switch hook and dial Call Hold code
    *12.  Your call is on hold and you are connected to your second call.
  • To return to original call, hang up and your telephone will ring.  When you answer, you will be connected to your original call.
  • To alternate between calls, press switch hook.  Listen for the Recall Dial Tone and dial Call Hold code *12 and you will be connected to held call.

Tone Block - Deactivates Call Waiting.  Cancellation is on a per call basis and *70 must be entered before each call to activate tone block feature.

  • Listen for dial tone and dial access code *70 to deactivate Call Waiting feature.
  • If you are using a modem to connect to the Internet, you may want to include *70 as a step in your login command so that Call Waiting is automatically cancelled each time you log in.

Call Forwarding - Forwards all calls from your room telephone number to another telephone number.

  • Listen for dial tone and press *02. Listen for dial tone and dial the telephone number to which the calls should be forwarded.
  • If the party answers, announce the call forwarding arrangement and hang up. If the dialed number is busy or the party does not answer, hang up and repeat the steps immediately.  Listen for the confirmation tone - calls will forward.
  • To deactivate call forwarding, listen for dial tone and press *03. After hearing the confirmation tone, hang up.

NOTE: When forwarding calls to an off-campus telephone number, don't forget to dial 9 before the telephone number. When forwarding to an on campus number, you only need to dial the last five digits of the telephone number.

Three-way calling - Allows you to establish a three-party conference call.

  • Press switch hook briefly, putting your first call on hold.
  • Listen for dial tone and dial third party, announce conference.
  • Press switch hook to begin three-way conversation.

Caller ID - Shows the phone number of the caller before you answer the phone.

  • The number will appear on a display unit after the first ring.
  • Caller ID requires an additional piece of equipment, the display unit, that you must buy separately.

Consultation - Allows you to make a call while you have a caller on hold.

  • Establish first call.
  • Press switch hook and listen for dial tone.
  • Dial desired party to consult.
  • When third party hangs up, press switch hook twice to resume original conversation.
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Commonly Reported Problems

Telephone rings one short ring - Your telephone is probably call forwarded to another telephone number.  Listen for a dial tone and dial *03 to deactivate the Call Forwarding feature.

No dial tone - First, search your room for all telephone jacks (although there may be multiple jacks, only one will be activated) and try each one until you hear dial tone.  Then, to determine if the problem is with your equipment, unplug your telephone and plug in a telephone that is known to be working (borrow a neighbor's phone).  If that telephone works, then there is a problem with your telephone, NOT the telephone wiring.  if you still are unable to get your telephone to work properly after performing the actions above, you will need to put in a work request at your residence hall to have your telephone jack checked and replaced.  If this does not resolve the problem, call 692-6000 and report the problem so that a telephone technician can be dispatched.  Please note that you may be billed a service charge if the telephone technician finds that the problem is with your equipment, the jack or is user related.  

Static on the line -To determine if the problem is with your equipment, unplug your telephone and plug in a telephone that is known to be working (borrow a neighbor's phone).  If that telephone works, then there is a problem with your telephone, NOT the telephone wiring.  if you still are unable to get your telephone to work properly after performing the actions above, you will need to put in a work request at your residence hall to have your telephone jack checked and replaced.  If this does not resolve the problem, call 692-6000 and report the problem so that a telephone technician can be dispatched.  Please note that you may be billed a service charge if the telephone technician finds that the problem is with your equipment, the jack or is user related.  

Telephone does not ring - First, check your telephone to see if the ringer has been turned off.  Then, to determine if the problem is with your equipment, unplug your telephone and plug in a telephone that is known to be working (borrow a neighbor's phone).  If that telephone works, then there is a problem with your telephone, NOT the telephone wiring.  if you still are unable to get your telephone to work properly after performing the actions above, you will need to put in a work request at your residence hall to have your telephone jack checked and replaced.  If this does not resolve the problem, you will need to call 692-6000 and report the problem so that a telephone technician can be dispatched.  Please note that you may be billed a service charge if the telephone technician finds that the problem is with your equipment, the jack or is user related.  

Calls are not forwarding to correct number - If you are forwarding to an on-campus number, remember to dial only the last five digits of the telephone number.  When forwarding to an off-campus telephone number, you must dial a 9 first or your calls will be forwarded to the wrong number.

Other problems - Cordless phones require batteries and some Caller ID devices require batteries.  Examine your equipment and verify that good batteries are properly installed.  Also check to make certain that all cords are connected and that they are installed according to the manufacturer's instructions.   Please note that you may experience interference while using a cordless phone for many different reasons.  To determine if the problem is with your equipment, unplug your telephone and plug in a telephone that is known to be working (borrow a neighbor's phone-preferably a cordless model).  If that telephone works, then there is a problem with your telephone, NOT the telephone wiring.  If you still are unable to get your telephone to work properly after performing the actions above, you will need to put in a work request at your residence hall to have your telephone jack checked and replaced.  If this does not resolve the problem, you will need to call 692-6000 and report the problem so that a telephone technician can be dispatched.  Please note that you may be billed a service charge if the telephone technician finds that the problem is with your equipment, the jack or is user related.  

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Common Dialing Problems

Fast busy - The fast busy signal indicates that all circuits are busy. Because of the heavy volume of calls at the beginning of the semester, circuits may become congested and you may receive a fast busy signal. 

Cordless telephones - When you use a cordless telephone, you are using the airways and not your telephone line to transmit sound.  You may hear the conversations of others, and others may hear your conversation.

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Fraud & Abuse

Collect calls and miscellaneous services - Students are prohibited from accepting collect calls and billing any calls or services directly to their residence hall telephone number (i.e. third party calls).  The cost of the call and a handling fee of $10 for each call accepted or third number billed will be charged to the individual found to have made or accepted such calls.  If the responsible individual cannot be identified, the applicable charges will be divided equally among the residents of the room at the time the calls were made or accepted.

Fraud - Telephone fraud is a violation of VCU's Honor System as well as a state and federal offense.  Using another student's PIN is fraud and a $10 misuse fee will be charged for each call placed using a PIN other than the one assigned to you.  In addition, VCU reserves the right to prosecute anyone who abuses or fraudulently uses the telephone service.

Abusive calls - Making abusive, harassing or obscene calls is a violation of VCU's Rules and Procedures.  If you receive any abusive, harassing or obscene telephone calls, immediately hang up and dial *97to trace the call (Tracing a call does require you press charges against the caller.).  Next, call Campus Police (8-1234) to file a report and inform them of the call trace.  Be sure to provide the date, time and content of the call when reporting the incident.  You should also notify your Residence Assistant (RA) of the occurrence.

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This article was updated: 09/17/2017