Novel coronavirus information

April 6, 2020

Learning remotely: Resources for instructors and students

This message is being sent to instructors and students across the University of Washington.

Dear Instructors and Students,

Our first week in virtual classrooms has introduced a range of questions and concerns as well as new opportunities for all of us. What follows are summarized links to important information for both the short and long term, which supplements a special page with spring quarter resources that is updated frequently. You can also find answers to a range of questions related to the UW’s response to COVID-19 at the University’s novel coronavirus site.

Learning and teaching remotely
Teaching Remotely, hosted by the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL), provides instructors with resources for remote-course planning and teaching. Faculty who would like additional pedagogical and technical support from peers can participate in CTL’s Evidence-Based Teaching Program, while UW-IT and Learning Technologies offer workshops and resources on how to use various technologies for teaching. In addition, Faculty Senate leadership is working with my office on updated guidance for course evaluations, and I will send more information on that soon.

For students, Undergraduate Academic Affairs offers a guide to online learning. If you are a student with an emergent financial need, I urge you to visit Emergency Aid. Instructors, feel free to direct students there, as well. The Race & Equity Initiative also has posted many resources for students.

For instructors, information and advice regarding grading options (numeric or Credit/Non-Credit grades) are addressed on the Teaching Remotely site.

Students also have the ability to opt for a Satisfactory/Not Satisfactory (S/NS) grade, but we strongly suggest that students confirm with their advisers whether S/NS makes sense before choosing this option. Information regarding this option and other advice is provided through the Office of the University Registrar.

Student registration fees
Two registration fees have been suspended or eliminated. First, the late change in registration fee (add/drop) is suspended until April 13, providing an additional week for students to adjust courses without penalty. Second, the $25 late first-time (quarter) registration fee will not be charged for spring quarter. Students who have already paid this fee will be reimbursed. For more information, refer to the Office of the University Registrar.

Using Zoom and security
Like in-person classrooms, virtual classrooms need to be respectful, safe spaces for learning. UW-IT has provided methods for making classes via Zoom safer and protecting against misuse.

Intellectual property and copyright
The change to remote instruction has given rise to questions about the intellectual property rights of instructors. It’s important to note that nothing has effectively changed, aside from the sheer volume of materials being made available online to our students. Instructors have controls over the use of the materials they develop for their courses. More information regarding intellectual property and copyright can be found on Teaching Remotely.

With gratitude
President Cauce and I deeply appreciate your dedication to academic progress and excellence and recognize the significant amount of work by instructors and students to shift to remote learning in such a short time. We hope that this note clarifies a few important academic concerns and that you utilize these resources throughout the quarter.

Thank you,

Mark A. Richards
Provost and Executive Vice President
Professor of Earth and Space Sciences