Synchronous Engagement and Pass/Fail

This message was sent on April 14.

Dear Faculty Colleagues:

As difficult as it is to believe, we are approaching the end of the semester.  As this unique academic year comes to a close, it is vital to remember that a number of academic concerns remain that are key to students’ success in your courses.

Please make every effort to create some synchronous class time or synchronous individual opportunities for students to engage with you.  Both parents and students have expressed great appreciation for instructors who offer opportunities for real-time engagement and great concern when those opportunities are absent from remote classes.  Students are often intrepid and independent, but in these challenging times, they are reaching out for support and guidance. We know that faculty are deeply engaged in delivering high-quality remote courses while managing their own affairs during this crisis, but we ask that you make a special effort in these last weeks of class to offer synchronous support for students.

Additionally, the deadline for students to elect Pass/Fail under the special COVID-19 Spring 2020 policy is Friday, April 17, 2020 at 5 p.m.  Students may contact you to ascertain their standing in your classes or seek your advice as they make decisions about electing Pass/Fail.  Please respond in a timely fashion to their inquiries with both advice and concrete assessments of their standing in your classes to date.  We are pleased to see that students are taking seriously the decision to elect a grade mode, and your timely advice and assessments will help them make the choices best for them.

With thanks for your efforts and hopes for your health,

Michele Gillespie

Dean of the College 

Presidential Endowed Chair of Southern History 

Eric Ashley Hairston

Associate Dean for Academic Advising

University Associate Professor, Interdisciplinary Humanities