A Caring Classroom
Our goal has always been to provide small class sizes to help our students receive the personal attention needed to succeed. The academic experience in Fall 2020 will look different for each of us, but our focus on your safety without sacrificing your academic experience will not waver.
Courses this fall will be designed to deliver both in-person and online curriculum to accommodate students and faculty who are not able to be present due to health concerns or classroom capacity limitations. Courses with synchronous online components will be delivered on the same day and time as the in-person course is scheduled. All synchronous course delivery is to be recorded and made available to registered students unable to attend.
In order to support online access for your courses, we have outlined the minimum technology requirements.
Faculty and instructors teaching in the physical classroom are required to wear face coverings (such as a mask or face shield) while teaching. In situations where instructors can remain more than 10 feet from others, the instructor may remove their face covering.
For classes where the classroom capacity limits would be exceeded by the total attendance, instructors will identify and assign students to small cohorts for in-person class attendance on a rotating basis. Each classroom will have signage indicating the capacity limits.
At the core of Concordia’s academics is the strong mentorship and advising that supports every student throughout their academic journey. The commitment of faculty and first-year coordinators is key to our students’ success. Advising appointments will continue throughout the semester with the following modifications:
- Appointment with faculty advisors must be scheduled (no drop-ins).
- First-year coordinators should encourage appointments. However, drop-in appointments are permissible in situations where physical distancing and face coverings can be maintained.
To ensure proper physical distancing and accommodations for safety protocols, computer labs will be reorganized to allow proper spacing between computer stations. Computer labs will be supervised while during open hours and cleaning will involve wiping down (not spraying) keyboards and mice.
Safety in the Classroom
To maintain physical safety for all the students and professors in the classrooms, students and professors will wipe down the surface of their desks and chairs at the start of each class. Each room has disinfecting products installed for students and professors to use. When in class, students will be required to wear face coverings. Seats will also be stationed six feet apart.
In efforts to provide adequate attendance and record tracking for contact tracing, students will have designated seats in each of their classrooms.
At-risk faculty members may request reasonable COVID-19-related accommodations in their faculty duties (such as teaching fully online or providing virtual office hours) through their college Dean. Backup instructors will be assigned by the deans and substitute teaching plans for all classes will be created by the instructor. Employees are to be cross-trained to provide backups for specialized equipment use or program needs.
The Fall 2020 academic calendar has been adjusted to start Aug. 10, two weeks earlier than originally scheduled, and will conclude Nov. 23, before Thanksgiving Day. Important dates throughout the semester have also been adjusted to reflect this change.
Off-Campus Learning Experiences
A key element to the Concordia academic experience is equipping our students through high-impact opportunities, such as off-campus learning experiences. We encourage these to be available where the health and safety of all in attendance is prioritized. Faculty who plan to offer such an experience, including, but not limited to—field experiences, field trips, student teaching, student group trips, internships, practicums, study tours, study abroad—will need to coordinate with their Dean and provide a written plan accommodating for all pertinent university and state health measures. These written plans must be approved by the Provost and shared with all students and others in attendance.
During this time, the Provost’s Office, with the endorsement of the Undergraduate Council, will continue to temporarily suspend the usual Academic Policy Handbook rules regarding instructor authority in setting attendance policies. For the Fall 2020 term, the campus-wide attendance policy is as follows:
Students who are sick, who are experiencing symptoms, who are engaging in self-quarantine at the direction of their local Health Department or their health care professional, or who have been granted permission to attend remotely should not attend class. These students will not be required to provide formal documentation from a health care provider and will not be penalized for absences.
• Notify instructors in advance of the absence
• Notify the Student Life Office that they are sick
• Keep up with classwork if they are able to do so
• Submit assignments digitally if necessary
• Work with their instructors to try to reschedule exams, labs, and other critical academic activities
A Caring Community
Resources for Students, Faculty and Staff
Concordia promises students, faculty and staff a supportive, grace-filled community of caring peers, mentors and leadership. Guidelines and resources are available to help us mitigate the spread of illness on campus so we can work and learn as safely as possible.
A Caring Campus
Resources for On-Campus Experiences
With safety as our priority, new protocols will be implemented throughout all of Concordia’s facilities to help limit the spread of illness across campus as much as possible. By increasing sanitization protocols, following physical distancing measures and limiting building capacities, you can be assured to feel as safe and healthy as possible, no matter where you are on campus.