August is here (seriously, how did this happen?) and many college students in Texas are preparing to make the move back to campus, and back to class. Universities across The Lone Star State have spent the last several months creating their reopening plans, and below, we’ve highlighted the most important fast facts about each.

One major concern for college students – particularly first year students – is keeping up with rigorous courses in a variety of different formats. Even more intimidating is the thought of potentially missing class and falling behind due to illness. At The Enrichery, we’re here to help you be successful during your upcoming school year, regardless of any pandemic-related obstacles (and let’s be realistic, there will be plenty of those). Check out our academic coaching options for the 2020-2021 school year, and remember: education doesn’t have to be uncertain this year.

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS

In summary: online, hybrid, and in-person learning options for students

  • In-person instruction begins August 26th and ends November 25th, with final exams administered online December 7th – 16th
  • Students can do the full semester online but should “make sure to assess how this decision will affect their paths toward graduation”
  • Classes will be evenly distributed through the day from 8 am to 8 pm, with no more than 40% classroom occupancy
  • Three modes of classes:
    • Online: “a class designed from the ground up so all students can attend the main class experience online”
    • Hybrid: a class that has both in-person and remote learning elements, with the frequency of in-person learning based on instructional needs
    • In-person: a class for which there is at least some essential material that can be acquired only through in-person attendance
  • “In many in-person and hybrid classes, lectures will be streamed and/or recorded to allow students who become ill or who need to self-isolate to keep up and continue to make progress.”

TEXAS A&M

In summary: in-person and online options for students

  • In-person instruction begins August 19th and ends November 24th, with final exams administered online December 1st – 9th
  • “In the preliminary schedule, 50% of course sections are offered face-to-face and more than 60% of students have two or more courses face-to-face (with a remote option). By the time the final schedule posts, we are making every attempt to get all students at least one face to face course and most with two face to face courses (with every class having a remote option).”
  • Three modes of classes:
    • Face to face: “also synchronously streamed remotely via Zoom from the classroom”
    • Remote only: “not face to face; instruction generally delivered synchronously during scheduled class time via Zoom although asynchronous activities may be used”
    • Online: “not face to face; prepared specifically using principles for online learning; instruction may be delivered either synchronously during scheduled class time or asynchronously”

RICE UNIVERSITY

In summary: all courses will be offered in a “dual delivery” mode; can be taught on campus or through remote delivery

  • In-person instruction begins August 24th and ends November 20th, with final exams administered online December 9th – 16th
  • “Dual delivery classes are those in which all students, regardless of their physical location, have access to an effective learning experience designed to ensure the course learning outcomes can be met for all students.”
  • Classes with more than 25 students will be held online, and smaller classes can meet on campus. Some classes may be held outside.
  • All students will be tested for Covid-19 upon arriving at Rice, and be tested “on a regular and repeating basis” throughout the semester.

TEXAS CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY

In summary: in-person and online options for students

  • In-person instruction begins August 17th and ends November 17th, with final exams administered from November 18th – 20th and November 23rd – 24th
  • “Students may choose a fully online learning experience, where applicable …. but be aware that some courses may only be taken in person for accreditation requirements.” Students who take all classes online can still live on campus, and many campus spaces have been repurposed as safe virtual learning areas.
  • “On-campus courses will be delivered in a combined mode. An instructor will deliver primary components of a course in a physically distanced classroom, also delivering to online students who may have requested online learning or who may be ill or self-isolating. TCU classrooms have undergone technology upgrades for an optimum, inclusive experience.”

BAYLOR UNIVERSITY

In summary: most classes will be delivered in in-person or hybrid formats, with some fully online

  • In-person instruction begins August 24th and ends November 25th, with final exams administered online from December 3rd – 8th
  • “This fall, we plan to deliver the highest percentage of our classes in either a face-to-face or hybrid format. However, the University may need to adapt in response to COVID-19 during the semester and we must prepare to be academically flexible.”
  • On campus, Baylor has eructed “16 premium, fully equipped portable tent structures” across campus, which will add a total of 43,640 square feet of usable space for students. Students can use these new spaces for studying, group work, and so on.

SOUTHERN METHODIST UNIVERSITY

In summary: hybrid and online options for students

  • In-person instruction begins August 24th and ends November 25th, with final exams administered online from December 10th – 16th
  • Two modes of classes:
    • SMUFlex: a hybrid model “in which faculty will teach an in-person group of students at the same time as a remote group”
    • Virtual: offered online only
  • Students can request to be fully remote, and will have remote access to all extracurriculars, academic resources, etc. These students will not live on campus or attend any in-person classes.
  • “Any student who requests a letter of support to be fully remote can change their mind and return to on-campus instruction assuming you are enrolled in SMUFlex courses and not virtual (fully online) courses.” 

TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY

In summary: most classes will be face-to-face or hybrid, with others fully online

  • In-person instruction begins August 24th and ends December 2nd, with final exams administered from December 4th – 9th
  • Two-thirds of TTU’s courses will be taught using some degree of face-to-face instruction
  • “For first-year students, 80-percent of our 1000 level courses will be offered using a mixture of face-to-face and hybrid (combination of face-to-face instruction and online learning) instruction.”
  • Three modes of classes:
    • Face-to-face: “Face-to-Face indicates that the faculty and the students are in the same physical location at the same time.”
    • Hybrid: “include a combination of online and face-to-face lectures and/or activities.”
    • Online: these will be fully virtual, in both synchronous and asynchronous formats

Curious how other universities are handling this? This Business Insider article breaks down what the top 25 colleges and universities in the US have said about their plans to reopen in fall 2020.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.