Campus Messages regarding Campus Operations

Frequently Asked Questions about Campus Operations

Classes offered in Spring 2021 will continue to follow in-person instruction with social distancing. Classes will be offered in a mix of in-person, hybrid, and online formats. Faculty interactions with students are essential in all our instructional formats and should remain a priority. However, the trajectory of the pandemic remains unpredictable, and we must be prepared to adopt a different approach on short notice.


All on-campus classes and activities will continue to require social distancing measures that are currently in place unless guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) changes. Per USG guidance, all individuals must wear a face covering in campus buildings, unless granted an accommodation. Details about social distancing and face coverings that were announced in August 2020 will continue to be in effect.

Read more about Spring 2021 Instruction and COVID-19 Related ADA Accommodations Requests.

All First-Year Odyssey Seminars (FYOS) will need to be taught in-person, as a high level of engagement between faculty and first-year students is an essential element of this program. As all FYOS classes have low enrollment, faculty who have approved accommodations to teach other classes online may choose to teach FYOS in-person.

Classes offered in Spring 2021 will continue to follow in-person instruction with social distancing. Classes will be offered in a mix of in-person, hybrid, and online formats. Faculty interactions with students are essential in all our instructional formats and remain a priority. However, the trajectory of the pandemic remains unpredictable, and we must be prepared to adopt a different approach on short notice.

All on-campus classes and activities will continue to require social distancing measures that are currently in place unless guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) changes. Per USG guidance, all individuals must wear a face covering in campus buildings, unless granted an accommodation. Details about social distancing and face coverings that were announced in August 2020 will continue to be in effect.

Overview

University of Georgia instructors are using a variety of teaching methods to enable social distancing while also meeting the course learning objectives for all students, including those who are unable to be physically present due to a COVID-19 accommodation from the University’s Disability Resource Center. The University continues to make every effort to maximize face-to-face interaction while maintaining social distancing. 

More than 850 faculty members participated in the University’s short-course on socially distanced instructional options, while nearly 800 faculty members also took part in online learning seminars over the summer.

To accommodate social distancing requirements, students often rotate between in-person and online components in many classes. The need for social distancing required that several large, introductory classes that typically enroll first- and second-year students move the lecture component online but preserve the lab or discussion groups in-person. (Note that many lab sessions aren’t held during the first week of classes, and initial class sessions are often held online before establishing a rotational schedule). 

Courses in which an instructor has been granted an accommodation through the University’s Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) process have been moved entirely online but are still required to have interactive, small-group sessions and online office hours during which the student can meet with the instructor. 

Classroom Capacity

To maintain social distancing, the number of students classrooms can accommodate has been reduced, in most cases to between 20 – 40% of capacity, depending on room size and configuration. 

Instructional Formats

Spring semester classes will be taught using one of five instructional methods: fully face-to-face, hybrid synchronous, hybrid asynchronous, online synchronous, or online asynchronous.

Read more on these instructional formats.

There is not sufficient time between classes for FMD staff to disinfect every classroom effectively between classes. However, all classrooms will be thoroughly disinfected daily.  

In addition, disposable disinfectant wipes are being placed at central locations in campus buildings so that commonly used hard surfaces and objects (e.g., desktops, classroom chairs, study tables, doorknobs, etc.) can be wiped down before use. These wipe stations offer an opportunity for immediate cleaning/disinfection between custodial routine cleaning of campus spaces, including classrooms, as a student or faculty member can obtain a wipe as they enter and wipe down their immediate touch surfaces.

The stations will typically be positioned outside the classrooms so that they can be readily available to students and faculty. In addition, they will be routinely checked and refilled to maintain availability.

The active ingredient in these wipes, which is approved by the CDC and EPA, provides campus stakeholders a mild form of chemical disinfection that is comparable to Clorox and Lysol household disinfecting wipes (but without chlorine bleach) and is effective against a broad spectrum of viruses and bacteria. More information about these stations and the disinfectant is available on the FMD website.

The information you provide as a participant in surveillance testing, as well as your test results, is considered “sensitive information” under the University’s data protection policies and is protected by federal privacy laws.  This information will only be accessible by authorized University employees with a need to know. This information will also be shared safely and securely with the Georgia Department of Public Health to help facilitate contact tracing.

Read more about how the Department of Public Health Facilitates contact tracing.

Departments are responsible for determining if a traffic flow plan is appropriate for the common areas of their building(s). For buildings used by more than one department, the departments should coordinate on this decision and any plans determined to be necessary. Building occupants have the best knowledge of building usage patterns and are in the best position to develop and implement workable measures that encourage social distancing throughout the day. While there are no printed best practice guidelines currently available to share with department heads for developing and implementing traffic flow plans in their buildings, the Preventative Measures Advisory Board (PMAB) is available for consultation as the decision-making and planning processes move forward. The PMAB is available for consultation by email at pmab@uga.edu or through the PMAB Help Desk through this link PMAB Help Desk Request.   

OEP will be happy to provide you with one of these training classes via Zoom. Contact OEP at 706-542-4845 or prepare@uga.edu to set up a class.  These classes are also taught at Staff Training and Development on a quarterly basis (https://busfin3.busfin.uga.edu/human_resources/courses/fulldesc.cfm).

The Facilities Management Division (FMD) can be contacted via our Work Request Center or for facilities emergencies during normal business hours (7:30 am to 5:00 pm) call 706-542-7456. For after-hours facilities emergencies please call the University of Georgia Police Department at 706-542-2200.

FMD’s mission-critical staffing plan and essential services are available on the continuity page of the FMD website.  If you need to request extra cleaning due to COVID-19 exposure, purchase extra departmental supplies, order a sneeze guard partition, or need to have a facility disinfectant wipe station replenished, please complete the online form at https://workrequest.fmd.uga.edu/.

The University of Georgia is anticipating a resumption of in-person instruction for the Fall Semester beginning in August 2020 for all University System of Georgia (USG) institutions. However, this is dependent on health conditions and state regulations.

In-person instruction will conclude at Thanksgiving break, with all remaining coursework and final exams moving online following Thanksgiving. The calendar for online final examinations will remain as previously set, December 11–17. 

While many students will choose not to return to Athens after Thanksgiving Break, we will need to continue to provide services for those who do choose to return or are unable to depart. The University will remain open after Thanksgiving Break and will continue providing regular campus operations and student life services—such as housing, dining, health/wellness centers and campus transit—until the end of the Fall semester.

The University Health Center recently set up treatment tents in our parking lot. These tents assist us with ensuring that the care of those with respiratory illness occurs separately from the services offered inside the center. We are continuing to see students and other patrons of our diagnostic, rehabilitation, and wellness services onsite, albeit in a limited scope, at this time. We are also offering curbside pickup from our pharmacy.

Although limited in scope, we are open, and we continue our primary mission of caring for the University’s students in the highest quality and safest manner possible, while also stewarding the health and wellness of our community. We are working diligently toward more remote encounters for those who can be seen by phone or other telehealth measures by our medical and behavioral care providers, as well as virtualizing our wellness and outreach programming under a new initiative, “BeWell UGA at home.”

Employees should consult with their supervisors about teleworking and flexible schedule options. Supervisors have increased flexibility to approve telework and flexible schedules in order to comply with the Governor’s directive to reduce the number of employees on-site at any given time. Authorized managers can waive the requirement to complete the usual telework agreement and may use email to confirm approval to telework.