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Academic Decisions

Classroom and other academic experiences look more normal in fall 2021.  With more consistent in-person learning opportunities, some changes have been made from the 2020-21 academic year around COVID-19. The following decisions come from recommendations made by working groups of faculty, students and staff.

Absences Due to COVID-19 Isolation/Quarantine

Absences due to isolation/quarantine during the fall 2021 semester will be handled as extended authorized absences. Students should contact their instructors to discuss how they can maintain progress in their courses. 

In general, this will not include “Zooming in” to a live class session. The University Attendance Policy considers these absences “authorized.”  Students will receive a letter clearing them from COVID-19 isolation or quarantine that they can share with their instructors when it is time to return to class. 

Class Modality

The vast majority of traditionally in-person courses will be offered in person this fall. While a small number of courses remain online, those should primarily be asynchronous. 

For students who need to miss class during the semester for reasons other than COVID-19 isolation or quarantine addressed above, the normal attendance policy will apply. Students should work with their instructors to ensure they stay on track with progress in their courses.

Contact Tracing

In-person classrooms will be set at normal room capacities this fall, without social distancing. To support robust contact tracing, instructors have been asked to keep track of where students are sitting in classrooms.

Instructors may ask students to fill out a sheet periodically or every class period indicating where they are sitting. Students may also be asked to sit in the same seat all semester; to jot down the names of other students sitting near them; or something else that allows them to be prepared to share seating arrangements with contact tracers should the need arise.