Khanh Nguyen / The Sunflower
As the university is preparing for the spring semester to begin in less than a month, students have many questions about what this semester will look like compared to the previous one.
Roughly two months will mark a year since COVID-19 started widely affecting the United States and caused all colleges to transition to completely remote learning for the spring 2020 semester. WSU returned to partly in-person instruction for the fall semester with social distancing and mask wearing enforced.
While administration has cautioned instructors to prepare for the possible switch to completely remote learning, WSU is currently planning on as much in-person instruction as possible. Here is what we know about the spring semester thus far.
Full 15-week semester
The university is planning on in-person instruction to continue for the full 15-week semester. This contrasts with the fall 2020 semester, where classes moved to completely remote learning the two weeks following Thanksgiving break.
The semester will begin a week later than usual on Feb. 1 to make up for the cancelation of spring break. Administration hopes that cancelling spring break will eliminate travel and thus limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.
After a push from the Student Government Association, the university has adopted two weeks throughout the semester (March 15-19 and April 19-23) as “wellness weeks”. SGA will utilize these weeks to advocate for mental health and provide free events for students to de-stress.
SGA started pushing for these days after the fall semester with no fall break proved to be difficult for students to take care of their personal well beings as well as keep up with their schoolwork. Instructors are being encouraged to be flexible with their coursework and class times so students can utilize the services that are being offered.
In-person classroom guidelines are expected to remain the same as fall semester. Students will be physically distanced and will be required to wear masks at all times. The Student Health Center will still provide testing for students as needed throughout the semester.
All classes will be either hybrid, hybrid online, fully online synchronous, or fully online asynchronous.
Last day of spring classes is May 6 and final exams are scheduled for May 8-13. Students can view the full academic calendar here.