Email sent on 10/21 by Jeremiah Davie
In preparation for the Spring semester, the COVID-19 Task Force is currently studying the academic schedule in order to provide recommendations to help promote health and safety, while simultaneously ensuring that our students continue to receive the personalized face-to-face instruction that D’Youville is regarded for, pre-COVID. As you are in the process of rethinking your personal instruction plans and department schedule, please consider two key lessons we have learned from reflecting upon the Fall’20 semester. This information is critical for increasing the percentage of on-campus face-to-face instruction.
- We Need to Increase Space Utilization among Hybrid Courses
We have an opportunity to increase space utilization (number of hours a space is used per day) if we are more strategic in the way we schedule our hybrid classes. What we have learned is that sometimes there is confusion over the exact percentage of time a hybrid class actually meets for face-to-face instruction. Moving forward, please specify what day(s) a hybrid class will be teaching face-to-face, and what day(s) the space will be available for usage by another instructor. Also please indicate if you could be flexible and switch those days if necessary.
- We Need To Improve Accommodations for Students Preferences/Expectations:
We have an opportunity to increase our level of control over the consistency of student’s experience. What we have learned is that classroom climate and socialization issues arise when instructors lose control over students’ participation in hyflex (the majority chooses to go online-only). In these types of settings, it may actually be more beneficial to run the course as a 100% online course, or as a hybrid with distinctly defined in-person and online learning activities/objectives. Such accommodations provide students with an upfront and realistic understanding of what to expect. As such:
- please consider transitioning any hyflex classes with poor outcomes to hybrid classes for the spring semester; or
- please implement a rigid rotational synchronous attendance policy among the courses that remain hyflex.
We will be helping to disseminate additional information as soon as possible, as we understand that everyone is eager to solidify the schedule and finalize their preparations for the Spring’21 semester.
Sincerely Submitted by the Undersigned,