For Instructors

Instructor FAQ

How often does a class need to meet in person?

Any class not labeled “Hybrid” or “100% Online” in the Fall Timetable is expected to meet throughout the semester at the regularly scheduled days and times. Classes labeled as “100% Online” should require no in-person meetings, though synchronous online classes will require students to meet virtually at the regularly scheduled days and times. Instructors teaching classes labeled “Hybrid” should submit a plan for their scheduled meeting days and times to the department chair or dean’s office for review.

Can instructors change the delivery mode of their classes on their own?
Classes are expected to be taught throughout the semester in the mode indicated in the Timetable. If extraordinary circumstances prompt an instructor to request permission to change the delivery mode of a course, the instructor should contact the department chair or dean’s office to discuss possibilities.
Will instructors and students be required to wear masks in the Fall semester?
At this time, students, faculty, and staff are expected to wear masks while indoors on campus for the summer and fall semesters. The University will monitor CDC and DHS guidance moving forward.
Can instructors wear plastic face shields instead of cloth masks?
Cloth masks generally provide better risk reduction for others in the room as opposed to plastic face shields. However, we understand that instructors may wish to teach with face shields instead of masks in order to avoid the impacts to communication caused by cloth masks. For this reason, instructors may choose to wear face shields instead of cloth masks while they are teaching.
Will social distancing guidelines remain in place for classrooms in the Fall semester?
The University is currently planning to return to normal seating in classrooms this fall, but with masking requirements in place.
What do I do if a student asks to complete my face-to-face or hybrid course online?
Instructors are not expected to change the mode of delivery (face-to-face, hybrid, synchronous or asynchronous online) of the course for individual students. Students are expected to abide by the instructor’s attendance policy as stated in the syllabus.
What happens if a student in my classroom tests positive for COVID-19?
Students are asked to reach out to their instructors if they test positive for COVID-19 so they may secure any materials/information they need to complete their coursework while they are in quarantine and/or recovering. Students with a positive COVID test will be required to isolate and should not come to the classroom. Please help these students keep up to date with the content of the class as you would any student with a documented illness.
What should I do if I am experiencing symptoms of COVID-19?

If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, you should immediately schedule a COVID19 test and quarantine from the public and those in your household. Do not return to class/work before receiving a negative COVID-19 test or until you have quarantined for the required amount of time and are no longer experiencing symptoms.

Can faculty, staff and students use University facilities to perform research?
It is expected that university facilities will be open for normal use in the Fall 2021 semester. However, safety and hygiene rules and guidelines, including the shutdown of some university facilities, could change at any time as a result of changing conditions.


Classroom Mask Management

Instructors should clearly inform their students that a class cannot begin until all students are wearing a mask properly. This Classroom Mask Management document contains helpful information that may be useful for communicating expectations to students and responding to a student who refuses to wear a mask in class.

Syllabus Guidance

The Implementation Team has developed COVID-19 language to include in syllabi for courses with face-to-face components during the spring 2021 semester.

Substantive Interaction Guidelines

All hybrid and on-line classes must contain significant amounts of substantive interaction to ensure that the engagement of students and the quality of their instruction remains roughly equivalent to what it would be in a classroom experience. The U.S. Department of Education provides some examples of activities that can be considered substantive interaction.


Course Delivery Methods

Standard In-Person
Instructors will hold all class sessions as indicated in the Timetable, and students are expected to attend all class sessions in person. Instructors should indicate the course attendance policy in their syllabi, and each instructor should explain the class attendance policy in the first class session.

Online Synchronous
In an online synchronous course, students and the instructor meet virtually on the days and times indicated in the Fall Timetable. Instructors may hold students responsible for participating in synchronous class activities. Just as in an in-person class, instructors should indicate the course attendance policy in their syllabi, and each instructor should explain the class attendance policy in the first class session. Instructors who teach an online synchronous class should not require students to attend lectures, discussion sections, or exam sessions at any particular location, including any UW Oshkosh campus, as students may enroll in the class who cannot travel to any of the three campuses.

Online Asynchronous
An online asynchronous class will list no meeting days and times in the Timetable, and students should not be required to participate, either online or in-person, at any particular day or time, though individual students or groups of students may meet virtually with the instructor and/or each other at a mutually agreed time. Students may (and should) be held accountable for completing assignments and participating in discussions by due dates listed in the course syllabus.

Some courses may be delivered in a “hybrid” format. Typically, a hybrid course meets regularly in person throughout the semester but replaces some in-person meetings with activities that require substantive interaction between students and between students and the instructor. The instructor should make it clear on the syllabus, and explain during the first class session, expectations for class attendance and for online activities.