Academic Update for Instructors - 5/29

May 29, 2020

We will continue to share information throughout the summer with these "academic updates." All messages will be archived on the instructor page of the COVID-19 website.

In the meantime, we've pulled together some resources and opportunities to help you plan for fall semester.

Included in this email:

  • Fall Calendar – new
  • Approaches to Teaching in Fall 2020 – new
  • Additional SIOT Session – new
  • NCFDD COVID-19 Resources – new

Fall Calendar

For Fall 2020, we will be operating under a modified calendar, in keeping with Chancellor Green’s announcement today, as follows:

  • Monday, August 17: Classes will start on an asynchronous remote learning basis.
  • Monday, August 24: In-person instruction will begin for courses with an in-person component.
  • September 7, Labor Day: Classes will meet.
  • October 19-20, previously Fall break: Classes will meet.
  • November 19-20: "Fifteenth Week" preparation for finals.
  • Saturday, November 21-Wednesday, November 25: Finals will take place.

The Fall 2020 calendar is designed to minimize travel to and from campus and to finish in-person instruction before the winter flu season. Based on a recommendation from the Forward to Fall committee, these changes were made with the support of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee on behalf of the full Faculty Senate and have been approved by President Carter.

Approaches to Teaching in Fall 2020

As we learned this spring, circumstances can change quickly, and our ability to adapt will be key to a successful fall semester. The Center for Transformative Teaching has created a flexible hybrid model as an approach that enables instructors to make adjustments to their course design to meet a range of circumstances. This is a modification of the HyFlex course model, which was recently published in Inside Higher Ed. Both of these are good resources for thinking about using instruction methods and creating course materials that will maximize student learning next fall.

Additional SIOT Session

Online registration is open for the June 15 - July 2 Summer Institute for Online Teaching. This session will focus specifically on teaching in the fall and is available to all instructors.

The CTT has also published an Online Teaching Guide in addition to its "Keep Learning" Quickstart Guide. Its instructional designers are available for individual consultations throughout the summer.

NCFDD COVID-19 Resources

The National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity has curated a list of support resources in response to COVID-19, including information about pivoting to online instruction, teaching in a time of crisis, and maintaining self-care through challenging times. It has also set up a COVID-19 discussion forum for members. Our institutional membership means that NCFDD resources are available for free to all faculty, staff, post-docs and graduate students with an @unl.edu or @huskers.unl.edu email account. Learn more and activate your account.