This memo to faculty highlights resources that can be used in the event of a circumstance that prevents faculty and/or students from coming to class. It also outlines academic continuity support at Oxy.
As I announced at the January faculty meeting, the College has been working on campus emergency preparedness plans, which include provisions for maintaining academic continuity in the event of a disruption that prevents faculty and/or students from coming to campus or attending classes in person. We have created an Academic Continuity Planning website for faculty to use as a resource and planning tool. This webpage is a work in progress as we will continue adding information to this site as it becomes available. Please feel free to provide input and feedback about additional resources that you would like to see made available to support these efforts.
This progress update on continuity planning is also timely, given the concerns that have been raised regarding the potential impact of the world-wide COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak. As the situation on the ground is rapidly changing, it is prudent to plan for disruptions that may be caused by travel restrictions, quarantines for potentially exposed individuals, or needs of faculty or academic staff related to caregiving.
We want to highlight the following resources that faculty can use in the event of a circumstance that prevents faculty and/or students from coming to class.
Instructional Technologies and Tools—this webpage contains an inventory of the tools and resources that can assist faculty in delivering course content and communicating with students in the unlikely event of class disruption due to COVID-19 or other emergency situations.
Alternative assignments or content—think about possible readings, online materials, videos, tutorials, etc. that you could assign and that would allow you to achieve your learning goals in the event that classes are disrupted.
Academic flexibility—please consider the needs of students who may not be able to return to class on 3/16 due to travel delays or other circumstances related to the outbreak. You may want to consider the deadlines for assignments that will be due shortly after break and communicate with your students about options for flexibility during that time.
ITS & Library/CDLA team members will hold daily office hours throughout the month of March (beginning Wednesday, March 4, see full schedule of hours below) to provide information, assistance and instruction to faculty about the resources and tools available to maintain continuity of instruction. Also, team members are available by appointment to discuss options with individual faculty members and departments. Please contact the Help Desk at firstname.lastname@example.org to reach the appropriate team member for your needs.
I also draw your attention to the College’s COVID-19 website that includes all existing communications on this matter, as well as links to useful external resources. Yesterday’s message from President Veitch and Sara Semal includes helpful information regarding prevention measures you can take to keep yourself and the community safe and healthy. A forthcoming communication from HR will include updates on international travel and provide guidance should you experience flu-like symptoms.
We are assessing the situation daily and will continue to post updates on the website as they become available.
Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.
Wendy Sternberg, Ph.D.
Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College
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Location will be in the Academic Commons Brown Lab unless otherwise noted.
Mondays: 2:00-3:30 p.m.
Tuesdays: 9:00-10:30 p.m.
Wednesdays: 12:30-2:00 p.m. (March 4 will be in the Academic Commons room 119B)
Thursdays: 1:00-2:30 p.m. (March 5 will be in the Academic Commons room 119B)
Fridays: 8:15-9:30 a.m.
Regular Moodle Office Hours
Mondays 10-11 a.m. (Academic Commons room 225)
Thursdays 3-4 p.m. (March 5th will be help in Academic Commons room 225)