Winthrop University: Return to Learn - Academics

Return to Learn

Academics

Learning options

A mix of online, hybrid and face-to-face offerings has been created to give students maximum flexibility in scheduling and choice of modality depending on their needs as well as to accommodate our reduced on-campus class sizes in order to effectively social distance students in the classroom.

To date, 41 percent of our classes will be in-person, on-campus courses, 32 percent of classes will be a hybrid of online and on-campus instruction, and 27 percent of classes will be offered solely online. Students can check their class schedule in Wingspan to see what changes already have been made and make alterations to their schedule if needed before classes begin.

An important advantage to this mix of offerings is that it eases the movement to online instruction if Winthrop must pivot to fully online instruction again in response to a COVID-19 resurgence.

Labs and other classes not conducive to online instruction

Some labs, studios, and courses with extensive hands-on learning components will ideally be taught in a face-to-face mode rather than utilize online or hybrid instruction. In such environments, in addition to social distancing and the use of masks/face coverings, other preventative measures may be employed, such as requiring the use of gloves if a task so requires.

Approved academic calendar

Review the calendar (link). Modifications for fall 2020 include holding classes on Labor Day; forgoing fall break in October; canceling classes on Election Day; concluding face-to-face instruction before Thanksgiving break; and moving to remote instruction after Thanksgiving to complete the fall semester. These changes allow us to minimize travel to and from campus in order to avoid potential increased instances of COVID-19.

Cultural events

Cultural events still will be required, but there will be more options for fulfilling requirements in order to accommodate students who may not physically be able to attend events as well as to meet social distancing requirements. For example, some events may be recorded or live streamed, in addition to in-person opportunities. The Cultural Events Committee will recommend best practices and options for those who schedule events.  More information will be added to the cultural events website (link).

Cleaning and sanitizing in academic spaces

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Reduced classroom capacity/social distancing

Classrooms and lecture halls have been rearranged in order to enforce social distancing. Regular classroom settings will operate at 40 percent capacity. Extra chairs and desks will be removed in order to abide by social distancing recommendations. Lecture halls or spaces with fixed seating will operate at 20 percent capacity. Signage will be placed on the floors of these rooms to indicate which seats should be used and which rows are unavailable. 

Daily instructional period

The scheduling for face-to-face classes was shifted to more fully utilize the day and time slots to allow for physical distancing, reduce congestion between class meetings and enable cleaning between assigned class times.

Common time

While Winthrop recognizes the value our community places on common time, the difficult decision was made to eliminate it for fall and spring in order to reduce congestion in dining facilities and create more scheduling options for classes that had to be added for our robust course mix (see Learning Options above). Common time may be reinstated for the 2021-22 academic year.  

Online course training

Faculty members remain dedicated to ensuring that our students receive high quality online academic instruction and offerings. Through training offered by the Winthrop Office of Online Learning, to date (update as of some date), a total of 164 faculty members are now fully certified to provide online instruction. In addition, 188 faculty members completed Winthrop Online Teaching Certification (WOTC) 101: Online Course Design and Development Basics and more than 145 faculty members completed WOTC 102: Online Course Facilitation and Management.

Classroom discipline regarding mask requirement

Info to come

Attendance policies

Info to come

SU Policy

Info to come

Virtual office hours expectation

Info to come

Last Updated: 7/13/22