Information and resources for faculty, instructors, and TA's.
(Left) Nazia Zakir, assistant vice president of Environmental Health and Safety, and (right) Bonnie Ferri, vice provost for Graduate Education and Faculty Development.
Academic and Instructional Resources
- Provost Academic Continuity Resources
- OIT Academic Continuity Resources for Faculty and Instructors
- Undergraduate Academic Support Services FAQ's
- Graduate Education Guidance and FAQ's
- Professional Education FAQ's
Frequently Asked Questions
[Editor's Note: This page was reviewed and updated on July 10, 2020.]
Classes and Coursework
Will Fall 2020 classes be delivered in person, online, or through some combination of the two?
We aim to retain as much face-to-face interaction as possible. Georgia Tech classes will be scheduled in one of five modes:
- Residential spread: Courses/sections that are residential with social distancing measures in place in the classroom. This is the traditional format that we are treating as the desired option.
- Remote with limited in-person instruction (hybrid):
- Hybrid hands-on: Courses/sections will offer lectures via remote delivery and bring students to campus for hand-on studios and lab activities with social distancing measures in place.
- Hybrid touch points: Courses/sections will offer lectures in an online format and will bring students to the classroom several times during the semester for meaningful in-person experiences.
- Hybrid split: Courses/sections will offer lectures both in class and through broadcast recordings using classroom technology but will also bring smaller groups of students to the classroom on a predetermined basis with social distancing measures in place.
- Remote: Courses/sections that are completely remote and delivered online (e.g., OMSCS courses).
School chairs and college deans have been asked to select the most appropriate mode of instruction for each course in order to maximize student learning while minimizing health risks. In consultation with the colleges and schools, the Registrar’s Office, and Capital Planning and Space Management, the Institute will confirm classroom assignments and delivery modes based on space available, prioritizing certain classes for in-person delivery: lab classes, group project classes, senior design classes, classes where there is a pedagogical advantage, project-based classes, classes requiring physical equipment, and discussion classes.
While most courses will proceed in their previously assigned space, some classroom reassignments may be necessary, especially in cases that can help optimize the residential experience for new incoming students and graduating students. In every case, classroom reassignments will be done in consultation with instructors and school chairs.
Courses taught by a faculty member with an approved accommodation may be assigned to remote delivery. Also, courses that are typically offered online will continue to be offered online.
Class delivery modes will be published to OSCAR by Monday, July 20.
How is the Fall 2020 semester calendar changing?
The fall calendar looks different, but students will have the same number of contact days with instructors. To reduce travel, we will cancel the two-day Fall Break currently scheduled for Oct. 5-6 and ending fall instruction by Thanksgiving. Reading days and final assessments will be administered in a hybrid format, and the calendar will be modified:
- August 17: First day of classes
- September 7: Labor Day holiday
- November 23 – 24: Final instructional days (no new material or scheduling of any other assessments)
- November 25 – 29: Thanksgiving holiday
- November 30 – December 8: Reading days and final assessments
- December 9 – 10 or 11 – 12: Commencement
What additional safety measures will be put in place for classrooms, specifically?
All classrooms are being reviewed and possibly reconfigured to ensure social distancing. Special health and safety protocols for classrooms that are unable to be configured to ensure social distancing are being developed. Among those protocols are:
- Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) will ensure that each classroom is provided with a supply of facial coverings for those who wish to wear one but who did not bring a facial covering to the classroom.
- Either plastic lectern barriers or plastic face shields will be available to faculty members to use while lecturing in classrooms. More information will be shared before the semester about how these items can be requested.
Some classes will be transferred to larger spaces which allow for social distancing.
In all courses, faculty will accept papers, projects, tests, homework, and other assignments only in electronic form unless the assignment is a physical project.
Will we be able to plan seminars, symposia, and similar academic activities this fall?
Activities related to the academic enterprise, including orientations, student and faculty recruitment, symposia, lectures, and conferences, should be planned to allow for social distancing and minimizing of large groups. Contingency plans should be made for transitioning to remote implementation in all cases. Transitioning symposia, meetings, invited speakers, conferences, and other programming to a virtual format is recommended.
We recommend that faculty-focused gatherings be delivered remotely where feasible, including New Faculty Orientation, faculty meetings, curriculum and planning meetings, and other faculty-centric activities.
May students and faculty engage in online learning outside the United States without approval from the Office of General Counsel?
Students and faculty who plan to engage in online learning physically from any of the following countries need to first gain approval from the Office of General Counsel (firstname.lastname@example.org): Cuba, Crimea Region of Ukraine, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.
A student in my class has accommodations through the Office of Disability Services. How should I provide these accommodations when teaching and assessing remotely?
The Office of Disability Services continues to be the point of contact for students and faculty in terms of accommodations requests. Faculty can review their students' accommodations by accessing the Disability Services AIM portal. There, faculty can view a list of students who have requested accommodations and which accommodations they need by class and section.
- Faculty should consider alternate assessments to timed, exam-based assessments, as many students with disabilities have special situations that could affect their ability to complete a timed, online exam.
- Students should review updated syllabi for course adjustments and contact faculty via email if there are concerns.
- Faculty should also check in with each student via email to ensure that accommodations are applicable and adequate.
- Students and faculty should consistently monitor and address accommodation concerns and continue to vet all questions about accommodations through the Office of Disability Services.
For more information on how faculty can create accessible courses, please see Maintaining Accessibility When Teaching Remotely.
For more information on accessible resources, please see Academic Continuity Resources for Faculty.
How accessible is Canvas?
While Canvas, Georgia Tech’s learning management system, does contain accessibility features, it is important to ensure that the resources and documents shared with students through Canvas are also accessible. For more information on how faculty can create accessible courses, please see Maintaining Accessibility When Teaching Remotely.
How can I allow more time on a test or allow a student to take a test multiple times?
The Quiz tool within Canvas allows accommodations (e.g., extended time, multiple attempts, etc.). The following links provide a step-by-step guide on how to set up each accommodation in Canvas:
- Allow extra attempts for quizzes
- Allow extra time and moderation for quizzes
- Assign quizzes to individual student(s)
If I create a recording, how can I ensure that it is accessible?
Kaltura Personal Capture, which is integrated into Canvas, can be used to record desktop activity, video, and audio to prepare instructional materials. Kaltura provides machine-level (automated) captions for the delivery of media. The accuracy of these captions depends on the clarity of speech as well as the content matter. Faculty and TA's can edit these captions. Professional captioning services are available and can be very costly.
How can I conduct accessible real-time (synchronous) sessions?
If faculty use BlueJeans, BlueJeans Events, or WebEx for synchronous instructional sessions, the sessions are not captioned in real time. If a session is recorded and downloaded, the video can be published through Kaltura with machine-level (automated) captions.
Can I travel — domestically or internationally?
No. Per USG guidelines, all nonessential travel is prohibited until further notice.
We are under a U.S. Department of State Global Health Level 4 Travel Advisory. This is unprecedented, as it is the highest-level advisory. Many countries across the world are implementing preventative safety measures that may involve travel restrictions, mandatory quarantines, border closures, and travel and entry prohibitions with very little notice and for an indefinite period of time.
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