Coursework changes

In order to meet public health guidelines regarding social distancing, some classes will be fully online, some will be offered in a blended format and others will meet in person in larger rooms.

Class format options

Fully online

In a fully online course, the instructors will decide among three structures. The majority of fully online courses will be taught either synchronously or asynchronously.

  • Synchronous: Attend virtually at the time the class is taught.
  • Asynchronous: Access your course material (lectures and readings, for example) according to the deadlines laid out by the instructor.  You meet assignment due dates and finish the course by the end of the semester.
  • Self-paced: You complete the online materials on your schedule, working independently from 6 weeks to 6 months.


Class includes both face-to-face and online material. Two common blended options are:

  • Class splits: Part of the class attends in-person on one day, while the rest take that day online, then they rotate.
  • Lecture/discussion group: Lectures for the whole class would be online. Smaller discussion sections are delivered in-person.

Face to face

Since these courses require room for social distancing within the classroom, they will be held in larger-than-usual rooms. Or, smaller classrooms will be capped at a lower number of students.

If you enroll in a face-to-face course, you will be expected to attend in-person unless you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or other health-related concerns.

You should not attend class if you are not feeling well. Instructors will be flexible on attendance policies.

If you cannot attend your face-to-face class because you are ill, your instructor will make every effort to accommodate your needs. In some courses, you will be able to attend class virtually through Zoom or another streaming technology. In others, you will be able to download recorded lectures. Instructors will have the specifics of their accommodation plan by the start of the semester.

If you already know that you want to limit your time on campus, you should consider enrolling in more online and/or blended courses.

Faculty may modify how they hold office hours: hold office hours online, in a larger classroom where they can socially distance or build in time at the end of class for open questions.

Changing class formats

In general, students cannot switch class formats once the semester has started. Our courses will be scheduled to be delivered as fully face-to-face, fully online or a blended format combining in-person and online instruction. An exception would occur if a student receives an accommodation from the Disability Center. Students are encouraged to meet with a representative from the center if they feel they might qualify for such an accommodation.