Will Drexel be modifying the fall term?
The University will deliver a full 10-week term which will begin as planned on September 21 and end on December 14. To minimize the potential for virus spread, students who are on campus will be asked to depart by Thanksgiving. Following the Thanksgiving break, students will complete their final week of the quarter and finals remotely rather than traveling back and forth for Thanksgiving and increasing the potential for viral transmission.
What is a “hybrid” approach, according to Drexel?
At Drexel, the hybrid approach is an instructional method for learning that is both flexible and adaptive. In the hybrid instructional method, some class meetings are in-person (FTF), at established times and in campus space(s), while others are remote (either synchronous or asynchronous).
The hybrid approach provides our students with more flexibility and options for the fall. This is especially important due to the current nature of COVID-19.
Will students have the option of taking a course remotely if they are concerned?
Drexel University will be offering multiple course instruction methods in the fall in an effort to make the return to campus as safe as possible, including remote and hybrid courses. More information about the instructional methods can be found on Drexel Central’s Course Registration webpage. In addition, new first-year international students who are unable to attend classes on campus due to travel restrictions should consider exploring Drexel’s Remote Fall 2020 option.
What if I need help accessing Drexel services and resources remotely?
What expectations should I have for remote classes?
Students should expect that their remote courses will be a mix of synchronous (i.e., course sessions that will be offered virtually to all registered students at the same time using tools like Zoom) and asynchronous engagement.
Any course sessions that are being delivered synchronously must be conducted during the originally scheduled time slot (Eastern Daylight Time).
To accommodate students in widely varying time zones or who need other academic accommodations, all synchronously delivered content must be recorded and made available to students (i.e., posted to Blackboard). In keeping with current University policy, students are free to download and use these recordings for their own use but are prohibited from distributing them.
To avoid course scheduling conflicts that may arise due to synchronous engagement, we will be following our normal registration process, which restricts students from registering for two classes during the same time slot.
As always, faculty are required to provide office hours, which will now be conducted remotely (e.g., online, phone, etc.) and should be clearly listed in the course syllabus.
What is the grading policy for Summer term?
We recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought much uncertainty and disruption to the lives of our students. After serious consideration and conversation with deans, faculty and our students, it became clear that following our standard grading policy during this unprecedented time was not the best path forward. For that reason, we will offer the option for students to take summer term courses on a Pass/No Pass basis.
Details are available at this link. An FAQ from the Office of the Provost about the Pass/No Pass option is available here.
How can I connect with my academic advisor?
Academic advisors within the colleges and schools are ready to work remotely with students, using Microsoft Teams and Zoom, in addition to corresponding by phone and email. Students can continue to schedule appointments with their academic advisors as before; scheduling appointment technology is available through the DrexelOne portal on the My Success Team Channel.
What should I know about Disability Services regarding COVID-19?
What if I am a semester student?
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies: Remote instruction will continue for all courses in the graduate programs. Except where otherwise specified, classes will meet remotely at their regularly scheduled times.
For other semester programs, including those in the College of Medicine, Dornsife School of Public Health and Kline School of Law, please consult your college/school officials for updates.
Who decided which courses will be held on campus?
The decision to hold a particular course on campus was made collaboratively by the academic unit, the Provost's office and the Office of the University Registrar. The decision-making took into consideration the need for the course to be taught in person to maintain the academic rigor and integrity of the course, along with the capacity of the University to safely deliver instruction.
How will students be notified whether their class is on campus or not?
All information regarding instructional methods for each course are noted in the Term Master Schedule of courses as well as in DrexelOne when students search and register for fall courses.
My class is scheduled to be held on campus and I would rather take it remotely. What do I do?
Students in this situation should contact their academic advisor to explore alternative options.
What do I do if I have questions or concerns regarding my courses and/or graduation?
We recommend that students contact their academic advisor as soon as possible so that any questions or concerns can be properly addressed.
What has Drexel done to improve remote courses since the spring?
We remain committed to providing our students with high-quality experiential learning opportunities, regardless of course instruction method. This past spring provided Drexel with many opportunities to evaluate and refine our virtual education efforts. We have been working throughout the spring and summer to strengthen our instruction while also investing in technologies and trainings to ensure that the fall term is enhanced for our students– no matter where their learning takes place.
The University has taken several specific steps to improve the student experience this fall. These include:
- Offering some classes in an in-person instructional method, especially those classes for which that modality is particularly important, such as performance, lab and studio courses.
- Improving technology in classrooms where hyflex (simultaneous real-time) and hybrid learning will take place, and providing faculty with new software tailored to virtual learning and technology
- Providing significant ongoing trainings and instructional design support to faculty to enhance remote instruction.
- Implementing a peer mentoring program for faculty, matching faculty experts in remote instruction with those who are new to this modality.
- Expanding a Remote Course Facilitation program that provides technological assistance to faculty teaching in the remote setting.
I do not have easy access to the proper hardware and/or software needed to make my academic term successful virtually. What should I do?
Drexel University is committed to supporting students in their remote learning. Students who have hardware or software needs should contact their academic advisor for support. In addition, Drexel IT provides guidance on its webpage for connecting to Drexel resources remotely. This includes information on accessing free or discounted internet and data services during COVID-19. There is also an online form for students to request a loaner laptop.
My at-home environment is not ideal for remote learning. What should I do?
Students should consider consulting with the Professional Academic Coaching staff at the Center for Learning and Academic Success Services (CLASS) to explore ways to manage their learning environment and incorporate study strategies that are effective for remote learning.
What support and resources are available for students?
Drexel continues to offer a wide variety of support resources for students engaged in all learning modalities. If a student is seeking academic support for coursework, they should visit the Learning Alliance webpage to explore tutoring and other content resources. In addition, the Center for Learning and Academic Success Support Services (CLASS) offers peer and professional academic coaching to customize learning strategies to individual student needs; they are also well-versed on all institutional resources and can help students get connected to the appropriate support. There are also programs to support specific student communities, such as the Drexel Autism Support Program (DASP), the Office of Disability Resources, the Center for Inclusive Education and Scholarship, the Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, and Veteran Student Services.
Additionally, Drexel University’s Student Success team offers a variety of experiences and services to help students get connected to social, residential, spiritual/religious, wellness and civic opportunities. Visit the Student Life webpage to learn more about services and activities.
Will faculty and academic advisors provide online office hours outside of class?
Academic advisors, faculty and support services will be accessible remotely for students to ask questions, address concerns and receive assistance. If a student has any difficulty connecting with these individuals and services, they should contact their academic advisor for assistance.