No doubt you have questions regarding the upcoming semester, including how we intend to offer courses. That has been the subject of much discussion this summer as several faculty and staff have been working to decide how best to proceed. In making these decisions, our primary considerations have been safeguarding the health of students, faculty, and staff, while maintaining the highest quality of education and engagement for our students as you progress toward your degrees.
How we choose to offer courses depends on various factors:
- Room capacity – We made changes in the physical configurations of our classrooms to meet social distancing guidelines required for public health.
- Faculty and staff health – We, just like other organizations and communities, must accommodate employees with health concerns or vulnerabilities or who live with family who have health concerns or vulnerabilities.
- Absences – We must plan for potential student or faculty absences during the semester due to illness or the need to quarantine.
We have three modes of course delivery:
- Hybrid: The course will be offered face-to-face and online.
- Face-to-face: The course meets in a classroom.
- Online: The course will be fully online, and may include synchronous as well as asynchronous components.
Most classes will be delivered in a hybrid format. This means students will attend the class face-to-face for some part of the week and attend onlinethe other part of the week or engage in asynchronous modules or lectures in preparation for the face-to-face class meetings. This approach best helps us address the three concerns above.
We recognize, as the semester progresses, individual students and faculty may be required to quarantine or isolate. With only a few exceptions, classes of any modality will be accessible for online learning. This also will allow students who cannot return to Wittenberg at this time to continue to make progress on their degrees. Exceptions include courses that involve advanced labs, some art/theater projects, or clinical experiences that require face-to-face engagement.
Regardless of how classes are delivered, students will have regular, direct interaction with their faculty members. Most classes will be conducted at the day and time for which they are scheduled, and students should expect weekly face-to-face or synchronous sessions. Most faculty will also continue to hold face-to-face office hours where social distancing is possible, or synchronous teleconferencing meetings where they are not.
Please start checking your e-mail regularly as faculty will likely communicate with you this way. If you don’t check e-mail frequently, you may miss important information for your classes.
We understand this semester is going to look and feel different for all of us. But we remain committed to promoting the high standards of artistic, scholarly, and scientific inquiry that are Wittenberg’s trademark.
Specific information regarding the instructional approach of individual courses will be forthcoming.
If you have any questions, please contact the following:
- Vice President and Dean of Students: Casey Gill, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Senior Associate Dean: Jon Duraj, email@example.com
- Associate Provost: Mike Mattison, firstname.lastname@example.org
Michelle Mattson, Ph.D.