Will all classes be online?
All classes will be online through the end of spring quarter.
Because summer session is typically offered about 84% online for undergraduates and 77% for graduate courses, we are less vulnerable in summer to impacts of the coronavirus. While most of our summer courses will be online as originally planned, we will be offering a very limited number of small, highly experiential courses in a face-to-face format.
We plan to reopen with face-to-face classes when we begin our fall quarter in mid-September, even if it must be modified in some way. Should any modifications be necessary to this decision about face-to-face delivery of fall classes, those changes will be communicated no later than July 15.
What online collaboration tools are available to students?
Zoom is available to all students. Only a DU email account is needed to log in. In addition, after the final exam period is over, Zoom will be turned on for every DU class by default.
Microsoft Teams is also available for all students to download and use for collaboration purposes. Canvas can also support student teams, but whether that technology is to be used is left to the discretion of the faculty member.
Will I be able to stay on track academically during this crisis?
We are committed to ensuring student academic progress is maintained during this challenging time. What does this mean? It means that we will work closely with you to make sure you stay on track and not lose progress to your degree as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Specifically:
- For students anticipating graduation in June: We will be rapidly conducting degree evaluations for all those intending to graduate in June, looking for missing classes, seeking alternatives, and communicating frequently.
- For our commitment to diverse learning styles and neurodiversity: We will be ramping up resources, tools and advising to support the transition and navigation into these new online learning environments.
- For students who anticipate technology challenges with online coursework: Please contact the Provost’s Office (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will help you troubleshoot.
- For students using GI Bill benefits: We know you are concerned about potential impacts to your benefits as a result of transitioning all courses online. A legislative solution is currently moving through Congress. Please be assured that as updates come in, Veterans Services and the Certifying Official will update you as soon as possible.
- For all students: We are working to create or modify policies to support your success and help you stay on track for degree completion.
My work requires access to campus facilities. How will my efforts be affected by COVID-19?
We realize that while many of you can work remotely on your creative work, research and scholarship, others require the use of campus facilities. In those laboratories where research is deemed essential, please follow the instructions of your faculty mentor, and observe best practices to minimize risk and prevent the spread of illness.
How will my internships, placements and fieldwork be impacted by COVID-19?
Many of you currently are, or will be, spending some portion of your graduate program at an off-campus site. Each program is different, of course, and conditions are changing rapidly. However, each program has a designee that is overseeing these partnerships, and they will be your best source for advice. Everyone on campus is united in their desire to find creative solutions to optimally train students to prepare for their careers.
I’m graduating in spring 2020 term. How will I complete my dissertation or thesis defense?
Students defending a dissertation or thesis in the spring term will be permitted to conduct their oral defense by video (via Zoom) for all committee members to view. In-person defenses will also be permitted as long as they adhere to any federal, state, or local mandates regarding the pandemic. View this document for resources for a virtual oral defense. Refer to this Zoom guide from DU’s IT department. Additionally, all deadlines for the spring quarter have been extended one week.
- How should I submit forms and collect faculty signatures?
Will DU be able to adhere to licensure and accreditation guidelines during this crisis?
The faculty and administration also are working closely with licensing and accrediting bodies. They will provide continual updates on how they are addressing these guidelines.
How is DU supporting students enrolled in the Learning Effectiveness Program (LEP) or who have neuro-diverse needs? For them, online learning may be an even more significant hurdle that impacts their social and academic experience?
Because of our low student-to-faculty ratio, our faculty can support the needs of all of our students even at a distance. For example, they are able to adjust with asynchronous delivery, adjusting deadlines, working one-on-one with students, and more.
How are graduate students being intentionally supported during this time, beyond Pass/Fail?
The Office of Graduate Education and the individual academic units provide academic and advising support to graduate students. In addition, our Programming Council (through Campus Life and Inclusive Excellence), serves graduate as well as undergraduate students with a wide range of health-and-wellness and engagement opportunities. Any student who needs additional support can access services by submitting a referral through Student Outreach and Support (SOS).
Winter quarter also was very stressful, especially with the short notice to moving finals online. Access to counselors and additional services were impacted and continue to be. Could the Pass/Fail be offered for winter quarter?
It’s is not possible to set up Pass/Fail retroactively. Most of our students are in the quarter system and the grading for the quarter was well underway before we moved online in March. Our standard policy regarding grade appeals remains in effect. Should a student find that there are problems of process in grading (rather than differences in judgement or opinion concerning academic performance) they may consider a grade appeal.
Some non-traditional students find online learning preferable to a rigid on-campus schedule. What alternative strategies could you consider for the future?
After the crisis, it is likely that DU and other universities will rethink many of our approaches and structures. It is too early to know how we will evolve, but we definitely are learning a lot more about different learning styles and ways to deliver education creatively and effectively.
COVID-19 & Wellness
What should I do if I have symptoms of cough, fever, and shortness of breath?
During business hours, call the Health & Counseling Center nurse triage line, 303-871-2615. Our afterhours medical staff may be reached through the HCC mainline, 303-871-2205. Please be sure to call first before showing up at the clinic. Our medical staff will help you determine best next steps.
What if I have to miss class due to illness?
We are asking that faculty members use leniency with students as we approach the impact of COVID-19. Plans are currently underway to enable the University to offer classes online during spring quarter.
The University has recently communicated greater details on contingency planning with faculty members and has posted information on the Provost’s website: www.du.edu/news/message-faculty-coronavirus-3520.
How do I notify my faculty if I think I may have the virus?
If you have health concerns and need an accommodation if you are sick, need to miss a class, etc., notify your faculty using the methods you usually use to communicate with them. We are asking that faculty members use leniency with students as we approach the impact of COVID-19. Because we are in the middle of the cold and flu season, many students may be absent due to illness. Instructors are strongly discouraged from requiring medical or legal documentation from a student for any absences as requiring such documentation places burdens on all parties involved. If you are sick, stay home. If you are experiencing symptoms including a fever, cough, and shortness of breath, call the Health & Counseling Center at 303-871-2205 first before showing up at the clinic. Medical staff will determine best next steps.
Does DU require me to notify anyone if I test positive for COVID-19?
Your medical records and other health information provided to health plans, doctors, hospitals and other health care providers are private. Your personal health information is protected under federal HIPAA laws. If you test positive for COVID-19, the local health department will contact you and initiate an investigation. The results of the investigations will determine next steps for limiting the exposure risk to others. This could include quarantining a floor in a residence hall community or recommendations for a wider scope of quarantine and/or deep cleaning if the case originated in an apartment, office building or open suite area.
What if I become ill for an extended period of time and fall behind academically?
The university is committed to students' academic success and progression. This will be handled on a case-by-case basis. It is important to know that symptoms of COVID-19 are often mild and it is the expectation that students continue their coursework online should they be isolated or quarantined.
Who will be on campus to support students who are sick?
A variety of campus health and counseling staff will be available on campus to serve those who are sick. The University continues to follow all HIPAA, FERPA, CDC and public health guidelines in terms of care.
Can the health center administer tests for COVID-19 or do I have to go somewhere else?
If you're experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, call the HCC at 303-871-2615. Students with these symptoms are advised to not visit the Health & Counseling Center (HCC) without a phone consultation. Staff at the HCC will determine next steps.
Health care providers only can request a test for the virus that causes COVID-19. Those requests are made in alignment with guidelines from county or state public health offices. Approvals are based on symptoms and on risk factors such as travel history or exposure to individuals known to have the disease.
Should testing be needed, a HCC staff member will give students information about next steps. Walk-in testing is generally not available, including at the Health & Counseling Center (HCC) on campus.
How do I tell if I have COVID-19 or flu?
Because the symptoms of COVID-19 are the same as influenza, if you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, call the HCC at 303-871-2615 during business hours or after hours at 303-871-2205, before showing up at the clinic. Staff at the HCC will determine next best steps.
- What can I do to maintain my mental health and well-being?
Can I get care from the Health & Counseling Center even if I am at home?
Yes. The DU Health & Counseling Center is prepared to go online with medical and counseling services. Visit https://myhealth.du.edu/
Will I be transported off campus if I test positive or will I stay in campus housing?
Per the recommendation of the CDC and public health officials, those who test positive will be asked to self-isolate and quarantine where they are and remain there. This will prevent the further spread of the COVID-19 virus.
- What health support services are available to DU students?
Are campus visits, tours or sessions impacted at this time?
All admissions-related programs are cancelled until further notice. The Admissions office is open virtually.
Effective on Tuesday, March 17, the University will adjust building access. Because we anticipate significantly fewer staff on campus, exterior doors will be locked. Faculty, staff and students may access facilities with a valid ID card. If you do not have your ID card, please visit the card office in South Driscoll.
What financial assistance resources are available to students during this crisis?
- Student Assistance Fund (SAF)
- Purpose: The Student Assistance Fund provides limited financial assistance to currently enrolled University of Denver students who are unable to meet immediate, essential expenses because of temporary hardship related to an unexpected situation. (Request examples: Supplies for self-quarantine, funds for traveling home, concerns about food insecurities.)
- How to apply: Click here to submit an application to the SAF
- Documentation is required for the Student Assistance Fund Process. State, local policies, and company support options are rapidly evolving in response to COVID-19. Therefore, when considering fund requests related to rent and utilities, documentation is needed that demonstrates landlords and utility companies are reporting students to collection companies, evicting students, or disconnecting services to move forward with the Student Assistance Fund in order to address student need.
- For Rent & Utility Requests: During the COVID-19 crisis students are being directed to their local governments for guidance on support with Rent and Utility resource requests.
- Denver Resources: City of Denver’s Temporary Rental and Utility Assistance Program
- Resources for those outside of the City of Denver:
- Please work with your local governments regarding resource options within your city.
- If requested, a case manager can work with you to help identify resources within your home city.
- Student Assistance Fund (SAF)
What should I do if I plan to return to campus after visiting an area with sustained outbreak?
In this situation, the University asks that you self-quarantine in your current location for two weeks and not return to campus unless you have housing insecurity needs. In that situation, we will work with you accordingly and students with housing issues should email email@example.com to have questions answered.
My grandparents are older and not in good health. What can I do to protect them?
Older adults and people who have severe underlying chronic medical conditions, such as heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at a higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19. The CDC recommends avoiding close contact and putting distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
Won’t I be okay if I just avoid interacting with certain ethnic groups?
This illness does not discriminate between ethnic groups and neither should you. This is a great time to remind everyone in our community that the University of Denver is its people—all its people. We are committed to creating and maintaining a community in which everyone is treated with dignity, decency, and respect. The University of Denver will not tolerate any unlawful discrimination, harassment, or gender-based violence of any kind. When the University becomes aware that a member of the University community may have been subjected to or affected by discrimination, harassment, or gender-based violence, the University will take prompt, appropriate action to enforce the Discrimination and Harassment Policy. The University enforces this Policy pursuant to the University’s Office of Equal Opportunity & Title IX Procedures.