UI to move instruction online after Thanksgiving break, classes over 50 will be virtual in the fall

The UI announced details surrounding COVID-19 mitigation strategies for the fall 2020 semester. Housing and Dining will remain open, and classes with over 50 students will be online.


Jeff Sigmund

The Old Capitol is seen on April 13, 2020.

Rylee Wilson, News Editor

Classes at the University of Iowa will move to an entirely virtual format after Thanksgiving break in fall 2020, and classes with over 50 students will be conducted online for the semester as part of the UI’s strategy to mitigate COVID-19 on campus. Final exams will be delivered remotely.

A campus-wide email sent Wednesday afternoon detailed how life on campus will look in the fall. 

Residence halls and dining marketplaces will remain open but will take measures to aid in social distancing. Residence hall rooms will be limited to single or double occupancy, and common spaces, including lounges, may be closed or restructured. 

Guests and visitors in the residence halls will be limited to one at a time. 

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Campus, including Housing and Dining, will remain open after Thanksgiving break to accommodate students who rely on university services, according to the email.

The UI is in the process of developing a testing plan for students and employees on campus in collaboration with Johnson County Public Health. 

Students, faculty, and staff will be required to wear face coverings at all times inside university buildings, unless they are alone in a private office. 

The UI will provide two cloth masks, two disposable masks, and a face shield to all students, faculty, and staff, the email said.

First-year seminars, rhetoric courses, labs for math and chemistry classes, and other types of introductory courses will be prioritized for face-to-face instruction to ensure first-year students can connect with other classmates. 

Student activities and organization meetings with over 50 people will take place virtually. Gatherings with under 50 people will be allowed to take place in the fall, provided that participants wear face coverings and follow social-distancing guidelines. 

A series of forums will be held beginning next week to discuss the changes on campus. The email stated the times for these forums will be announced on June 19. 

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