To Our Faculty and Staff:
In light of continuing uncertainty regarding when the COVID-19 crisis will begin to abate, the university has made the difficult decision to move all summer courses to remote delivery. To allow you time to consider changes you might want to make to your courses, we have delayed the start of undergraduate registration for summer courses until April 13.
We greatly appreciate the many adjustments that you have made so far this semester, and regret that this news adds still more. We hope that your experiences with remote classes so far can help inform your planning, and encourage consideration of the following topics:
- Schedule: Given students’ wide range of time zones, how might you change your overall class schedule? Do you want to offer fewer synchronous meeting hours and/or replace some exams with projects?
- Structure: Now that you are more familiar with remote delivery (and Zoom itself), what changes might you want to try? Greater use of “breakout rooms”? White boards or annotation? Allowing non-verbal feedback? Remember, [U]Tech and UCITE offer extensive tips and resources online.
- Technical Requirements: In addition to Zoom itself, some courses have additional technical requirements. These should be shared with students as a Class Note in the SIS listing of the course.
We also invite faculty not already scheduled for summer courses to reconsider offering them. You might have an idea for a new course relating to COVID-19, or even one that this semester’s remote teaching inspired. We encourage you to speak with your department chairs and/or Meagan Rodgers (firstname.lastname@example.org) with thoughts or questions.
Keep in mind, given the decision for remote teaching, chairs and faculty should make necessary adjustments to the summer teaching schedule and course information by April 9, in advance of opening summer registration.
With regard to high school and undergraduate students participating in summer research, we have chosen to wait on this decision until we have more information regarding multiple issues, including the state’s stay-at-home order.
Meanwhile, our SOURCE office is asking students to consider different approaches to how they might manage research, from on-campus to hybrid to remote. You may want to encourage other students to think about that issue as well.
We will update you as soon as possible.
Thank you again for all that you are doing for our students and one another.
Ben Vinson III
Provost and Executive Vice President