Key Information

Dates at the end of each tab indicate the last time information was added or changed in that tab.

March 17, 2020

Thank you for your understanding and flexibility during these past few weeks.  We have worked together to safeguard the Washburn Community’s health and to ensure we can meet the educational goals of our students.  Ichabods are amazing and this COVID-19 pandemic response is no exception. Faculty, staff and students are working together to make the very best of our situation today.

My message includes important information about Washburn University’s next steps in this ever-evolving COVID-19 pandemic. We hope that this plan will provide some certainty as you plan for the remainder of the semester.  Please note that this letter is specific to the operations of Washburn University. A separate communication about Washburn Tech will be forthcoming.

As you know, the number of COVID-19 cases continues to grow both nationally and in our state. Public health officials believe this trend will continue. There are no known positive cases of COVID-19 presently at Washburn. We realize that limiting our contact with others is now more critical than ever to fight the spread of the virus. To this end, on Monday March 16, Governor Laura Kelly issued an executive order prohibiting gatherings of 50 or more people for the next 8 weeks in the state of Kansas.

In light of these facts and in order to continue to protect the health and safety of our community, Washburn University has made the difficult decision to continue online/remote instruction for all classes through the remainder of the semester. Face-to-face instruction in classrooms will not resume this semester. We will also take important, intentional steps in minimizing the necessity for the on-campus presence of Washburn faculty and staff wherever possible.

These developments are deeply disappointing to all of us at Washburn. We will all be doing our work in new and different ways in the coming days and weeks. It is important to remember that Washburn University is open and operating and ready to continue carrying out its mission.

Below you will find key information on what these decisions mean for Washburn University students, faculty and staff. Please look for a separate communication regarding Washburn Institute of Technology. We recognize that the following information will likely not address every question you may have and we are committed to rapidly sharing additional information as it becomes available.

Dr. JuliAnn Mazachek is working with academic leaders and faculty to prepare online and/or remote format for courses through the end of this semester.  She, along with others in Academic Affairs, will be working with faculty and staff to ensure continued delivery of academic programs and services.

Dr. Eric Grospitch will be providing updates to students, including continuing services for mental and physical well-being and housing.

Chris Kuwitzky and Teresa Lee will continue to keep you informed of our policies on pay and benefits, sick leave, telecommuting and more. Many communications will be sent through your area head, director, department chair and dean.  

 

FOR STUDENTS

Residence halls and dining centers

The university is in the process of determining how to address housing and dining. Residential Life will be communicating directly with residential students with move out instructions and information related to refund and accounts within the coming days.

Clinical training, on-campus laboratory research, and studios

Any student whose coursework requires clinical training, on-campus laboratory research, or studios should speak to their departments about plans for these educational activities.

International students and study abroad

International students and study abroad students and faculty should continue to work closely with the Office of International Programs, (785) 670-1051, as you make plans for the remainder of the semester, seeking their guidance on all matters.

Health Services

If you are seeking care for possible COVID-19 illness, call before you go to the health clinic, medical office or hospital emergency department. Speak to someone at the clinic or facility about your signs and symptoms so they may help guide your next step to getting the care or treatment you need. Symptoms of COVID-19 include but are not limited to: Fever greater than 100.3 degrees, cough, shortness of air or trouble breathing. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html

Student Health Services may be reached at (785) 670-1470 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. If you are calling after normal business hours, please call Health Connections at (785)354-5225. Health Connections is available 4:30 p.m. to 8 a.m..

COVID-19 CDC FAQ’s: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html

Counseling Services

Counseling Services will continue to provide care to enrolled students. Effective Thursday March 18, all sessions will be provided by phone. As we are suspending face to face services, we are also temporarily suspending drop-in Wednesdays. To make an appointment, please call us at (785) 670-3100 – option 1 or e-mail us at counseling@washburn.edu. We are working to secure telehealth options for your mental health care and hope to share information on this new model of care very soon. At this time, phone and telehealth counseling services may legally only be provided to clients who are currently in Kansas as that is where our providers are licensed. Case management and advocacy services may be provided via phone or telehealth across state lines. As a reminder, you will continue to have immediate access to a counselor around the round the clock by calling us at (785) 670-3100 option 2. Our “Option 2” service is for any level of need, and you may request services in any language.

Commencement

We have made the difficult decision to cancel Washburn University’s May commencement ceremonies and events. We will be exploring opportunities to celebrate our graduating students and their accomplishments in the future. Details will be forthcoming.

 

I want to close this letter by taking a moment to honor the incredible efforts you have all made to ensure that we complete this semester in spite of the challenges we face. As we have prepared to make this transition from in-person to remote instruction, I have heard countless stories of the good spirits of our students and the creativity and commitment of our faculty and staff. This moment is historic and the Ichabod response has been heroic. As always, our motto Non Nobis Solum—Not for Ourselves Alone—leads the way and we each become the living symbol of that motto through the actions we take now.

Stay well and I will continue to be in communication as we move forward together.

 

Sincerely,

Jerry Farley,

President of Washburn University

D2L Training and Access:

https://www.washburn.edu/its/online-education/index.html

 

VPN & DUO:

https://www.washburn.edu/its/vpn.html

 

Skype for Business - Phone Service

https://www.washburn.edu/its/Skype/support.html

 

Zoom Training:

https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/206618765-Zoom-Video-Tutorials

 

Password Management

https://password.washburn.edu/WashburnSelfServiceInstructions.pdf

 

ITS Training Resources Webpage

https://washburn.edu/its/its-training.html

 

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Ichabods Moving Forward Financial Grants

Washburn University students who need immediate financial assistance to stay in school are eligible for grants. Grants can be used for rent, bills, food and other basic needs. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. Click here to learn more, donate or apply for a grant.

Ichabods Moving Forward (IMF) is a student-led philanthropic organization sponsored by the Washburn University Alumni Association and Foundation. IMF supports an emergency assistance fund for students going through unforeseen hardship.



Bods Feeding Bods Pantry

The Bods Feeding Bods Pantry is still open for anyone in the Washburn community who may need food and commodities. For the remainder of the semester, Bods Feeding Bods, located in Kuehne Hall 101, will be open Monday - Saturday, 3 -5 p.m. Bring a valid WU ID to get access. If you are unable to access the pantry during those hours, contact any of the below departments to make an appointment.

  • Counseling Services -- 670-3100
  • Learning in the Community (LinC) -- 670-1950
  • Mabee Library -- 670-2485
  • Office of the Associate Dean for Student Affairs -- 670-1672
  • Residential Living -- 670-1065
  • Washburn Police Department -- 670-1151

Due to stay-at-home orders and remote work, not all of these offices may be available at all times. If access is needed outside of Washburn University’s or the pantry’s normal hours of operation (within reason), Washburn University police officers and the RA on duty in the residence halls have the ability to assist individuals.

We expect need to increase as the ramifications of COVID-19 continue. A donation barrel is located just outside of the food pantry for those who are able to donate. Most-needed items include canned fruit; grains such as rice, ramen and pasta; shelf stable proteins such as peanut butter and canned chicken; canned “meals” such as soups, ravioli and beef stew; cereal and shelf stable milk; and hygiene products such as tampons, shampoo, soap and toilet paper (even if it is one roll in a plastic bag).

The federal government has provided emergency relief funding for student grants through the CARES Act. In addition to the CARES Act funding, Washburn has secured additional financial resources to assist students who may be experiencing financial difficulties. Students who have been financially impacted due to this pandemic may be eligible to receive one-time financial assistance.

Assistance

Students may apply for one-time assistance with specific expenses related to housing, food, health care, course materials, technology and/or child care. Awards will range from $100 to $6195. We will continue to award until all funds are exhausted.

Eligibility

All degree-seeking students who were enrolled during as of March 13, 2020, are eligible for one-time assistance from these funds. If you have received aid from a campus or college emergency fund before this date, you are still eligible to apply for this funding. Please request funds only if you are in immediate need.

We encourage students with urgent needs to apply once for emergency relief funds. We cannot guarantee the fulfillment of a second application at this time. As we process requests, we will review the fund balance and notify students if we have resources available to fulfill more requests.
Additional funds may be available to students who are enrolled in the summer 2020 terms.

Application Process

To apply for funding, complete and submit the application, checking every category from which you need assistance. Please indicate on the application if you have requested funding from another source in the past few months. There are many students facing unprecedented challenges due to COVID-19, and our goal is to offer support to the largest number possible. We will accept applications until funds are exhausted. Click here for the application: https://washburn.edu/admissions/paying-for-college/emergency-grant.html

Fund Distribution

A team from across the enrollment management division will process your application. An email will be sent communicating review of your application. Direct deposit is the quickest way to receive your emergency funds. If you have not set up your account for direct deposit, you can use this link https://www.washburn.edu/student-life/business-office/ibod/direct-deposit.html.

We understand you are facing time-sensitive needs, and we are working hard to get these funds to you as quickly as possible. Please continue to visit the COVID-19 link on Washburn.edu for the latest updates and details about fund distribution methods and other important information related to this virus.

Academics and Financial Aid

These temporary policies apply to part-of-term courses (fewer than 15 weeks) that began on 2/15/2020 or later and full-term courses (15 weeks) in the spring 2020 semester, and include policies that address incomplete grades, withdrawals, A/Pass/Fail, Credit/No Credit, repeats, probation and suspension, success week, and scheduling of final exams.
Students will have the option to switch their grades from a letter grade to a pass/fail option. That option will remain open until the very end of the semester in May. Students will have to seek permission to switch to a pass/fail option for courses in their major. In addition, the date to withdraw from a course has also been extended from the normal deadline in early April.

Please review the full details of the changes by clicking here.

There is no doubt this has been a stressful time for all—students, faculty, and staff—and Washburn and its people have once again come together to do what is needed to make the best of a difficult situation. We believe these temporary policies will help relieve some of the anxiety many students may be feeling.

The best way to reach the financial aid office is to email them at financialaid@washburn.edu. Responses will be sent within one business day.

The financial aid office is still committed to serving the Washburn community and may be able to assist students experiencing financial distress during the COVID-19 crisis. Options will vary depending on students’ Title IV aid eligibility and extenuating circumstances. The financial aid office must assess each student on a case-by-case basis to find the best possible solution. This is a complex process and each answer is unique.

 

Scholarships

Accommodations will be made for students with renewable scholarships that missed renewal requirements as a result of COVID-19. The financial aid office will assist with the following accommodations:

  • Allow amnesty for renewal requirements for the 2019-2020 semesters
  • If future renewal requirements are not met, the financial aid office will remove the spring 2020 semester and recalculate the renewal requirements
  • If future renewal requirements are still not met after the recalculation, students may submit a statement explaining their extenuating circumstances to financialaid@washburn.edu.

The Student One stop is available by email at sos@washburn.edu. Physical mail will be checked periodically; any transcripts or communications sent by mail will be processed.

Students who are on campus can speak with someone at the business office window 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., and the business office can connect those students with the Student One Stop or other offices as needed.

Talk with Librarians

Live Chat is available with Mabee librarians from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday - Friday at http://washburn.edu/mabee.  

Librarians are also available by phone at 785-670-2485 and by emailing refemail@washburn.edu 8 a.m. - 5 p.m, Monday - Friday.

Tutoring

The Tutoring and Writing Center is now providing tutoring services online. We can offer assistance in:

  • Writing
  • Psychology
  • Biology
  • Accounting
  • Chemistry

Learn more about the Tutoring and Writing Center at washburn.edu/tutoring.

For tutoring in math, please contact Dave Snyder: david.snyder@washburn.edu.

Online Success and Skillshops

Video Skillshops are available at washburn.edu/skillshops.

Tips for Online Success

If this is your first experience with online learning, you may need to adjust your study habits. This webpage has tips for staying organized, getting the most out of video lectures, adapting your usual strategies and more.

In response to the expanding global disruption caused by the spread of COVID-19 and the responsibility we owe to our students, faculty, staff and community, we have made the difficult decision to cancel all Washburn University study abroad programs scheduled to depart in May, June & July with immediate effect. The latest updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. and foreign governments have led us to take this action.

We know that, for some, this end to ambiguity will come as a relief, and that for others this will be truly awful news. We, too, are disappointed that programs are canceled in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we must put the safety and wellbeing of our students, faculty, staff and community above all other concerns, and we believe that this is the best path forward at this time.

The OIP will refund the WU Study Abroad Application fee for participants and work with the Business Office to refund additional fees where possible. We will work with the Endowment & VPAA to apply scholarship awards for students who have incurred non-refundable fees. For students who have not incurred fees we will defer scholarships for future program participation where possible.

We are asking our faculty who are leading programs to contact the travel providers to see what refunds are possible. For credit-bearing courses, we are asking faculty members to design alternative course requirements.

This cancellation decision does not apply to any Washburn University study abroad programs that have already departed, although we strongly encourage those on current programs to return home as soon as feasible. Travelers are urged to keep current on the spread of the virus and the latest travel advisories by visiting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list/

During this time the campus community should also stay apprised of the extent of the virus and the most current travel advisories at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list/

Student Employment

Supervisors were sent information from their department head and the student employment coordinator. Students have been notified to speak with their supervisor if they have any questions regarding their timesheets.

Temporary Withdrawal Process

Given the uncertainty and inherent stress of this situation, Enrollment Management is committed to reaching out to students contemplating withdrawing from the university.

Students who attempt to withdraw through their student account will be directed to send an email to total-withdrawal@washburn.edu. Staff will reach out to those students via phone and email to discuss their individual situation. Depending on the course of the conversation, we may direct students to other departments on campus, such as advising, to help resolve issues driving the withdrawal.

Financial Planning and Literacy

Jamie McEwen, financial literacy coordinator, is available to assist students with financial planning and maximizing financial aid opportunities. She can be reached via phone: 785-670-2767, or email: jamie.mcewen@washburn.edu. As with normal operations, all others in the financial aid office can assist with general questions.

In order to continue de-densifying the campus and to ensure we are focusing academic resources on enrolled, degree-seeking students, Washburn University has made the difficult decision to temporarily suspend the practice of allowing Kansas residents age 60 and older to audit credit courses, effective Summer 2020. Washburn University deeply values the diversity and enrichment the 60+ Auditors program brings to the classroom and we are pained that circumstances require us to suspend this program. We look forward to the time when the 60+ Auditors program can safely and effectively resume.

Student Life

Washburn University sent a notice today to students living on campus that the university is closing its residence halls. However, the university will allow some students with special circumstances to keep living on campus with continued access to a limited food service.

“Following spring break, access to residence halls has been limited to those who received special approval to return to campus housing,” according to Eric Grospitch, vice president of student life. “As we continue to work to protect the health and safety or our community, we have decided to close our residence halls for the remainder of the semester and restrict living on-campus to a limited number of students who have no other option.”

Decisions are being made on an individual basis, but in general, students who will be allowed to remain on campus will have special circumstances, including:
  • Students whose permanent residence is outside of the United States, and the student is unable to travel to their home country.
  • Students whose academic department has deemed and verified their internship, clinical, or practicum will continue and requires the student’s on-site presence. In addition, the student must have accepted that arrangement.
  • The student has personal circumstances such as a student who is part of the foster care system, whose home community is quarantined or where returning home represents a health/safety threat.
“This has been a difficult decision in a period of change and uncertainty,” Grospitch said, “but we feel this is the best way to protect the health and safety of all our students.”

Students who are moving out of the residence halls are required to make an appointment with the Office of Residence Life to retrieve their belongings. Move out will begin on March 20 and conclude no later than April 1. Students arriving without an appointment will not be given access to the residence halls and they will be limited to no more than two guests to assist in the process.

Students moving out of residence halls will receive a pro-rated refund for both room fees and their dining plans. Details on that refund are still being finalized.

Chartwells dining facilities are going cash-free as a preventative measure. Credit/debit cards and iCards are accepted. Dining hours/facilities are changing as residential changes are happening, please check back here for current availability.

  • Lincoln Dining Hall
    • Open Saturday and Sunday, April 11 thru May 10
    • Lunch 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
    • Dinner 4-6 p.m.
    • *Sunday, April 12 a special Holiday menu will be served at lunch
    • Declining Balance customers: Meal prices at Lincoln have been decreased to $6.00 per meal for the duration of the semester.
  • Corner Store
    • Hot food options are available for lunch and dinner.
    • Monday - Friday, 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
    • Students can use Lincoln meal plan swipes and dining dollars at the Corner Store. Lincoln swipes are not limited during these altered operations
  • Union Market
    • Closed until further notice

Counseling Services is now serving students electronically! To request a telehealth (aka videochat) session by phone, call 785-670-3100, option 1 and leave a voicemail. You may also e-mail counseling@washburn.edu. Be sure to include your phone number, so we can call and get you scheduled. Virtual office hours are Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Counseling by phone is available 24 hours a day, call 785-670-3100 and select option 2. Translation services are available in more than 200 languages.

Additionally, counseling services is offering group Zoom sessions on coping and resiliency skills to help students through the COVID-19 pandemic. Contact them at counseling@washburn.edu to learn more and join.

Visit their webpage for more resources and information.

Student Health Services is available Monday through Friday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Please call 785-670-1470 to schedule an appointment or 785-670-1471 for medication refill requests.

If you are concerned about any exposure to, or any signs and symptoms of COVID-19, please call 785-670-1470 before you come to Student Health Services.

The Student Recreation and Wellness Center and all athletic facilities are closed until further notice.

The Student Recreation and Wellness Center is still providing services to help you continue to work towards your fitness and wellness goals. The SRWC is working through email and phone to help students, faculty and staff.

Email Services

Email: James.Thayer@Washburn.edu 

  • To receive a general at home 3 day workout program (Equipment Free)
  • Information on the At-Home Wellness Challenge
  • To schedule a Zoom Call appointment
    • Home program overview/ explanation
    • Exercise Form/Technique Correction
  • Exercise Modification/Recommendation
  • Answer general fitness, nutrition, and wellness questions
  • Get resources – articles, podcasts, YouTube videos, ebooks, and other resources

 

Phone Services

Office Phone: 785-670-2848

  • Answer general questions
  • Assist with goal setting/developing behavior changes
  • Exercise programming assistance/modifications

Most departments are operating remotely during this time. The best way to reach people and departments is through email or phone.

Career Services

  • career-services@washburn.edu 
  • 785-670-1450
  • To schedule appointments, go to your Handshake account and schedule an appointment as usual. For the "appointment medium," select "Zoom video call." The career advisor will schedule a Zoom meeting and send you a link to click on to conduct the appointment. This will come to your Washburn email address. The advisor will also send some instructions about what you need to do before your meeting. If you do not have access to video, please note that in the appointment request - we can do phone also via Zoom or Skype.

 

Diversity and Inclusion

 

Student Involvement and Development

Other Important Information

Due to Shawnee county's safer-at-home order, events on campus have been canceled through April 26. Events of 50 or more scheduled after April 26 will be reviewed at that time. 

Questions? Please contact University Scheduling at universityscheduling@washburn.edu or 785-670-1725. The office is continuing services remotely.

Washburn's physical campus services are limited at this time. Many services are being offered remotely as faculty and staff work off-campus.

The Memorial Union building is open Monday - Friday, 9:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.

You may contact the following departments as indicated below.

University Scheduling

Ichabod Service Center

  • icard@washburn.edu
  • 785-670-1188
  • A staff member will be in the office Tuesdays and Fridays, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

University Mailing and Printing Serivices (UMAPS)

  • umaps-graphics@washburn.edu 
  • The post office is open Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, 8 a.m. – noon. Tuesday and Friday hours are 8 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 2 - 3 p.m., with deliveries taking place 1 - 2 p.m. Mail can be picked up or dropped off during these times.

Chartwells Dining

  • steven.daab@compass-usa.com
  • 785-670-1864
  • The Corner Store is open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Meal swipes can be used at any location, no limits during this situation.  Lincoln dining is open Saturday & Sunday 11am-1pm

Closed until further notice.

Online ordering is available at www.ichabodshop.com and www.techshop.washburnbookstore.com. Orders will be processed Monday-Friday and will be shipped.. For questions, email ichabodshop@washburn.edu

The Mulvane Art Museum is closed through April 26. The Art Lab is closed until further notice.

Washburn University's Mabee Library created a resource center to help you find factual sources regarding COVID-19 and recognize false information and unreliable sources when you see them. 

Click here to visit Mabee Library's COVID-19 fact page.

 

For latest information from the Shawnee County Health Department, click here.

A Safer at Home Order has been issued for Topeka and Shawnee County. Beginning Thursday, March 26 at 12:01 a.m., residents will be directed to stay at home to help limit the spread of COVID-19.

 

With the situtation surrounding COVID-19 rapidly changing, please go to KDHE's COVID-19 Resource Center webpage for the latest information.

 

3/17/20

We will update this page regularly but if you want additional information about the situation on campus, you can email covid@washburn.edu and we'll get you an answer as quickly as we can.

For general information about the outbreak from a health viewpoint

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://cdc.gov

 

COVID-19 CDC FAQ’s: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html

 

Information for help with managing mental health:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html

 

How to care for yourself and/or others:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/steps-when-sick.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/caring-for-yourself-at-home.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html#precautions

 

Information for cleaning

 

For information specific to Shawnee County health issues:

Shawnee County Health Department

 

For information specific to travel abroad:

United States Department of State Travel Advisories

WUPRPM Regulations and Procedures

  1. Recruitment and Employment

 

  1. Telecommuting. Telecommuting is an approved work arrangement, for a specified time, in which some or all work duties are performed remotely at an off-campus location (e.g., home) by an Employee. Either the Employee, the Department or Administration, may initiate a request to telecommute. Telecommuting arrangements are not permanent and subject to change.

20.1 Employees approved to telecommute are expected to adhere to the following:

  • Will comply with all Federal, State, Local and/or University, policies, regulations and procedures that would apply if the Employee were working at the regular University worksite;
  • Will review the University’s Information and Technology Services regulations and procedures as described in the WUPRPM, Regulations and Procedures, section BB. Information and Technologies Services prior to or at the start of telecommuting;
  • Hours of work, compensation, record keeping (e.g., time sheets) meal periods, breaks, requests for leave (e.g., personal and/or sick) will be followed as if the Employee were working at the regular University worksite. Non-exempt Employees will receive prior approval from their supervisor before performing any overtime work while telecommuting;
  • Will establish an appropriate remote work environment to ensure reasonable safety and health standards. Any costs associated with the setup of an off campus site will be the responsibility of the Employee. Additional telecommuting costs, which may be required by the University, will need pre-approval prior to purchase.  Duties will be performed in an appropriate and safe work environment.  Employees will be covered by workers’ compensation for job-related injuries/illness which occur in the course and scope of employment while telecommuting and are expected to follow appropriate procedures when reporting a work related injury/illness or seeking treatment;
  • Employees are responsible for notifying their supervisor of any problems with connectivity and technological access needed to perform work duties.
  • Ensure the protection of University property, including equipment and data. This may include, but is not limited to, locked files, regular password maintenance and other procedures necessary for the job and the environment;
  • Responsible for the same performance and conduct expectations, including communications with colleagues, supervisors and/or Employees whom they supervise, as if they were working at the regular University worksite and will notify supervisor promptly if there is not a sufficient amount of work to perform while telecommuting.

20.2 Supervisors of employees approved to telecommute are expected to adhere to the following:

  • Comply with all Federal, State, Local and/or University, policies, regulations and procedures that would apply if the Employee were working at the regular University worksite.
  • Determine and convey job responsibilities and reasonable performance expectations and goals, including special performance reviews as appropriate.
  • Adjust schedules, including in-person or telecommute duties, as needed to ensure appropriate functions of the unit are being met.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires certain employers, including Washburn University, to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19.  These provisions will apply from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.

Information on who may qualify for the paid sick leave benefits and/or expanded family and medical leave is available from the Department of Labor (DOL) Employee Rights FFCRA notice and FAQs both found below.  An application form for those who qualify and interested is also available below.

Employees who complete an application will need to provide documentation, including medical documentation when appropriate, to support the request for leave.  A completed application along with the supporting documentation should be emailed to Human Resources at benefits@washburn.edu for processing.  Supervisors will be notified as a part of the application processing. 

The DOL continues to issue guidance on the FFCRA and thus provisions and processes are subject to change.  Human Resources will update the information contained with the Coronavirus Information web page with any changes which may be necessary. If, after reviewing the information contained with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act tab, you have any questions please email benefits@washburn.edu.

Department of Labor (DOL) Employee Rights Notice FFCRA
FFCRA FAQs
Application for FFCRA Leave Benefits

WUPRPM Regulations and Procedures

  1. Risk Management and Safety

 

  1. Communicable Disease.

 

20.1 Purpose.  To set forth procedures and regulations regarding the prevention, mitigation and/or management of Communicable Disease on campus to protect students, faculty and staff. 

20.2  Definitions.

20.2.1  “Communicable Disease” is an infectious disease transmissible (as from person to person) by direct or indirect contact with an affected individual, including by not limited to, hepatitis A, B and C, tuberculosis, rubella, chicken pox, shingles, influenza, measles, meningitis, COVID-19 and others as may be identified by local, state and/or federal agencies.

20.2.2 “Direct or Indirect Contact”. 

  • “Direct Contact” occurs when there is a physical contact between an infected person or a susceptible person.
  • “Indirect Contact” occurs when there is no direct human-to-human contact. Indirect contact may occur in several ways, including but limited to, when an infected person sneezes or coughs and the infectious droplets are inhaled, when a healthy person touches a contaminated object or surface and then touch their hands, eyes, nose or mouth prior to following universal precautions.

20.2.3. “Health Care Provider” for purposes of this regulation will adhere to the same definition as used by the Family and Medical Leave Act.

20.2.4 “Universal Precautions” is an approach used to prevent and/or mitigate the spread of infectious disease from bloodborne pathogens and/or certain body fluids. This includes, but is not limited to, following proper hand hygiene, wearing personal protective equipment when appropriate, maintaining respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette, using adequate procedures for cleaning and disinfection. 

 

20.3 Notification: Employees who have or suspect they are infected with a Communicable Disease should seek expert medical advice from a health care provider and are encouraged to advise local health authorities of possible public health threat when appropriate.  Employees should follow the directions of local health authorities in order to prevent the spread of infection and protect their own health.  Employees who have a Communicable disease and may be at risk for transmitting the illness through direct or indirect contact to other students, faculty and/or staff should notify Human Resources promptly. Students who have a Communicable disease and may be at risk for transmitting the illness through direct or indirect contact to other students, faculty and/or staff should notify Student Health promptly. 

 

Employees who present a health risk to other students, faculty and/or staff should conduct themselves responsibly for their own protection and the protection of others in the community, follow universal precautions as appropriate, and not knowingly engage in any activity which creates a material risk of transmission to others.

 

20.4 Returning to work. Employees should present a medical release, with or without restrictions, to Human Resources prior to returning to work from a Communicable Disease.

20.5 Compliance. The University will consider all recommendations statutes and/or regulations from any local, state and/or federal agency related to Communicable Disease.  The University will consider all applicable recommendations, statutes and/or regulations which protect the privacy of persons who have a Communicable Disease. Every effort will be made to ensure procedurally sufficient safeguards to maintain the personal confidence about persons who have Communicable Diseases. 

Washburn Tech Specific

WASHBURN TECH UPDATE (May 1, 2020)
Beginning May 4, Washburn Tech will gradually reopen specific areas of
campus to allow students to complete their programs as well as sit for
certification exams specific to their fields of study.

In preparation, students were notified this past week of their individual
completion requirements. In addition, Washburn Tech instructors and staff are undergoing safety training to provide the best possible environment for
students who return to campus. These protocols include the distribution of
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as masks and gloves, as well as
the constant cleaning of surfaces in classrooms, labs and offices.

The following timeline has been established:

May 4-8:
Small groups of students will return to campus to take the proctored
exams necessary to complete their programs. The Regional Simulation
Center, utilized by health care disciplines, will reopen to small groups of
students who need to finish clinical testing. Washburn Tech’s Academy
of Cosmetology will reopen on May 4 to students who will be scheduled
on a rotating basis. Salon services are not available to the public.

May 11-15:
Small groups of students who need to complete hands-on lab work will
return to campus. These students will be scheduled on a staggered
basis to allow for social distancing and safety measures. The
completion time, for these students, varies among programs and
students. Some students could finish in May while others may not
complete until sometime in July.

For Your Protection:
Washburn Tech is taking multiple precautions to safeguard the health of our
students, instructors and staff. Each person will be issued two masks and
gloves. You may also provide your own masks, if preferred. The cloth masks, Washburn Tech provides, may be washed and reused. Students, instructors and staff are strongly encouraged to wear these items.
Social distancing practices will be implemented and plexiglass shields will be installed. Washburn Tech’s maintenance crew will diligently and continually clean surfaces in classroom, lab and office spaces.
Students, who spend the day at Washburn Tech, should bring their own lunch.No food service or vending machines will be available.

Students will not be allowed to go outside during classroom breaks. In
addition, students should not linger outside the classroom or in parking lots
before or after class to eliminate the gathering of groups.

If a student is sick or not feeling well, he or she is required to stay home.

Graduate Recognition:
Celebrating our graduates is very important to the Washburn Tech family. As we monitor the situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, we will make every effort to create a way to highlight your wonderful accomplishments. Stay tuned!

Fall 2020:
Washburn Tech administrators and instructors are preparing several
educational plans to best meet the needs of our students in the fall semester.

As health experts predict a resurgence this fall of COVID-19 cases, Washburn Tech is creating a mixed modality model of learning in which students could learn both in the lab and online. As events, out of our control change, Washburn Tech is working to be prepared while prioritizing the health and safety of our students, instructors and staff.

New Student Orientations (NSOs) will be available virtually this summer,
rather than on-campus. Details will be relayed soon.

If you have questions about NSOs or the fall semester, please call
785.670.2100 and ask for a Washburn Tech admissions counselor or career
advisor.

Testing for Incoming Students:
Entrance testing will resume May 4 on the Washburn Tech campus. Incoming students, who would like to test, must have an application on file with Washburn Tech to be eligible. To schedule a testing appointment, call
785.670.3343. If you are testing, PPE is strongly encouraged on campus and social distancing measures will be taken in the testing center.

Laptop Check-in:
Washburn Tech’s IT Support is offering a drive-through return for students
who checked-out a laptop during the current semester. To schedule a drop off time, call 785.670.3000 or contact Washburn Tech’s manager of user and network operations at derek.kucharczyk@washburn.edu

 

3/24/20

Washburn Tech’s campus is closed with only essential personnel on site. Classes are now online and will continue until further notice. All students should be monitoring their email daily and are required to log in to Washburn Tech’s online instruction platform, D2L, at https://d2l.washburn.edu/d2l/login. Instructors will provide program information and guidance.

Our main goal is to stay connected to our students and to keep them engaged in the learning process.

Program Completion:

Working with our instructors, our management team has identified several programs that can be completed this semester using D2L. Students, both high school and post-secondary, will be notified through their instructors.

Several programs, however, cannot be completed online due to a hands-on component of the coursework. Washburn Tech is working on plans that will enable students to complete those competencies once the campus reopens. At this time, we anticipate the possibility of lab instruction sometime during the summer. Setting a timeline, at this point, is not possible.

High school students, unable to complete their program by the end of the semester, will receive “incomplete” grades which will be changed once they have completed their program. We are working with high school counselors and state educators to ensure these grades have no effect on a student’s educational standing in the fall.

A listing of all programs and their completion status will be distributed by the end of the week.

Testing:

Our admissions team is looking at various testing options and enrollment requirements for students wanting to attend Washburn Tech for the 2020 Fall semester. More information will be distributed soon.

SkillsUSA:

Washburn Tech students will not be participating this year in SkillsUSA Kansas competition, originally scheduled for the end of April. This difficult decision has been made with the health and safety of our students and instructors in mind.

Events:

All spring events on the Washburn Tech campus have been canceled. Among those events are Recycled Rides, Spring Career Fair, Washburn Tech Car Show and commencement exercises.

Ichabod Shop:

The Ichabod Shop on the Washburn Tech campus is closed but the online store is open at www.techshop.washburnbookstore.com. Orders will be processed Monday through Friday and can be shipped or picked up curbside for free. Curbside pick up is available Monday through Friday from 1 to 4 p.m. on the Washburn University campus. For further instructions, email ichabodshop@washburn.edu.

Resource Guide:
If you have questions, help is often just an email or phone call away. Refer to our resource guide that can help you connect with professionals both at Washburn Tech and in our community.

 

3/18/20

Washburn Tech is developing plans to help as many students as possible complete their programs in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. To stay within the parameters set forth by the Kansas Governor’s Office and CDC guidelines, Washburn Tech is moving all courses online beginning Monday, March 23.

Washburn Tech offers more than 40 programs but not all lend themselves to web-based learning due to hands-on components of the curriculum. Assessment of program delivery is currently underway with the goal of identifying coursework that can be completed this semester or at a later date and how that applies to students, both high school and post-secondary. Determinations will be announced soon.

“Our goal for every student is to complete his or her program,” said Dr. Gerald Bayens, dean of Washburn Tech. “Our plan of action might include mixed-mode learning, providing modules for coursework that has a hands-on component. We are truly proceeding in uncharted territory.”

In addition, Washburn Tech has temporarily closed the Little Learners at Washburn Tech as well as the Washburn Tech Academy of Cosmetology Salon at 109 SW 29th St. Commencement exercises scheduled for May are being postponed.

Washburn Tech students are required to log in to Washburn Tech’s online instructional platform, D2L, on Monday, March 23. Guidance is available at Washburn Tech’s COVID-19 update site at https://washburn.edu/techcovid. A link is also provided on Washburn Tech’s homepage, www.washburntech.edu. All updates on the COVID-19 situation will be shared on this link.

 

3/13/20

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Washburn Tech in-person classes are cancelled from March 16 through March 22. On March 23, all classes will move online and continue until further notice.

This plan of action is designed to minimize in-person exposure to align with the estimated COVID-19 incubation period. The decision to close for at least two weeks was made after the Shawnee County Health Department ordered the closing of Shawnee County schools.

Washburn Tech Students:

Please monitor your email daily!

Washburn Tech instructors and staff have started transferring instruction to online and other formats.

On Monday, March 23, students are required to log in to Washburn Tech’s online instructional platform, D2L, at https://d2l.washburn.edu/d2l/login. Your instructor will provide program updates and share the institution’s plan of action. If you need help in navigating D2L, go to https://washburn.edu/its/online-education/index.html. If you have problems, please call IT Support at 785.670.3000.

Laptops for students who don’t have access to a computer are available, but in limited supply. To learn more, contact Washburn Tech’s manager of user and network operations at derek.kucharczyk@washburn.edu.

Advising appointments will only be held via phone or email. For scheduling, call 785.670.2010 and press 0 or email tech-info@washburn.edu.

If you have other questions, please call 785.670.2010 and press 0.

Future Students: All testing appointments for Accuplacer, Pearson Vue or other testing have been cancelled until March 30. For more information, contact Washburn Tech Student Services at tech-info@washburn.edu.

Campus visits will not be scheduled until March 30 at the earliest. Please make an appointment by calling Washburn Tech Admissions at 785.670.2200 or email tech-info@washburn.edu.

If you have other questions, please call 785.670.2200.

Summer Enrollment: The summer course schedule is still under consideration. Please check this site for more information.

Campus Remains Open: We encourage all students and prospective students to stay home and not visit campus. Current operations include limited staff and building access.

Continue to consult Washburn University’s COVID-19 update site for additional information and guidance.

Continuing Education and Custom Training Classes: Our Continuing Education Custom Training classes will take place as currently scheduled.

Events and Outreach: All events on the Washburn Tech campus with participation of 50 or less through April 4 will take place as currently scheduled. We’re taking enhanced precautions due to the COVID-19 outbreak to postpone or cancel events involving 50 or more people for the next eight weeks.

We encourage all visitors to campus to exercise appropriate judgment and consider the potential risks to themselves and others.

Precautionary Measures Please continue to follow CDC guidelines no matter the situation or where you are located. Help protect yourself by adhering to some simple precautions. Follow CDC guidelines no matter the situation or where you are located.

The CDC urges each of us to:
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, as that is the route of transmission for many viruses and bacteria.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow, or alternatively with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

The faculty and administration of Washburn University understand the disruption of classes that occurred due to the COVID-19 crisis has been a challenge to many students. We have worked together to temporarily adjust several academic policies for the spring 2020 semester to support academic success under these extraordinary circumstances.

These temporary policies apply to part-of-term courses (short-term courses) that began on 2/15/2020 or later and full-term courses in the spring 2020 semester. The policies address grading options, incomplete grades, withdrawals, repeats and academic suspension. 

Please click here to see the temporary academic policies for Washburn Tech.

This has been a stressful time for everyone—students, faculty, and staff—and we appreciate everyone coming together to make the best of a difficult situation. We hope that these temporary policies will help relieve some of the anxiety many students may be feeling.

The federal government has provided emergency relief funding for student grants through the CARES Act. In addition to the CARES Act funding, Washburn Tech has secured additional financial resources to assist students who may be experiencing financial difficulties. Students who have been financially impacted due to this pandemic may be eligible to receive one-time financial assistance.

Assistance

Students may apply for one-time assistance with specific expenses related to housing, food, health care, course materials, technology and/or child care. Awards will range from $100 to $6195. We will continue to award until all funds are exhausted.

Eligibility

All post-secondary certificate-seeking students who were enrolled during as of March 13, 2020, are eligible for one-time assistance from these funds. If you have received aid from a campus or college emergency fund before this date, you are still eligible to apply for this funding. Please request funds only if you are in immediate need.

We encourage students with urgent needs to apply once for emergency relief funds. We cannot guarantee the fulfillment of a second application at this time. As we process requests, we will review the fund balance and notify students if we have resources available to fulfill more requests.
Additional funds may be available to students who are enrolled in the summer 2020 terms.

Application Process

To apply for funding, complete and submit the application, checking every category from which you need assistance. Please indicate on the application if you have requested funding from another source in the past few months. There are many students facing unprecedented challenges due to COVID-19, and our goal is to offer support to the largest number possible. We will accept applications until funds are exhausted. The application will be available mid-week of May 11, 2020.


Fund Distribution

Washburn Tech has created an application committee to process your application and FAFSA. An email from techemergencygrant@washburn.edu will be sent communicating review of your application. Once approved for funds setting up a direct deposit is the quickest way to receive your emergency funds. If you have not set up your account for direct deposit you can use this link https://www.washburn.edu/student-life/business-office/ibod/direct-deposit.html.

We understand you are facing time-sensitive needs, and we are working hard to get these funds to you as quickly as possible. Please continue to visit the COVID-19 link on https://washburntech.edu/  for the latest updates and details about fund distribution methods and other important information related to this virus.

Information for Faculty

Dear Washburn University faculty, 

You all received a message from Dr. Farley this afternoon outlining Washburn University’s plan of action in response to the spread of COVID-19.

I want to emphasize to faculty members our gratitude for the work you are getting ready to do to move your in-person classes to a remote delivery model.  We also know that this endeavor will look different for individual faculty members and will depend on the course you teach. Some of you have taught your classes online before, and can easily change your mode of instruction midstream. Others may be very familiar with D2L and Zoom and will able to post readings, videos, and assignments with no help. Still others may never have taught online or used these tools much, if at all. 

We recognize the need for support will vary from faculty member to faculty member and we are prepared to meet your needs.  If you need assistance taking your course content online, please plan to attend the following trainings. As we become aware of specific needs, additional training opportunities may be developed for later in the week. 

Desire2Learn (D2L) Basics

Monday March 16 9:00-10:30 in Henderson 108 OR Tuesday 1:30-3:00 pm in Henderson 108

This session will cover logging in, finding your course, general navigation, announcements, emailing, uploading files, sharing links and videos, and setting up and managing the gradebook. 

Getting Started with Zoom

Monday March 16 2:30-4:00 in Henderson 108 OR Tuesday 10:00-11:30 am in Henderson 108

This session will cover logging in, downloading software on personal computers, scheduling meetings, using the chat, sharing screens, recording meetings, and how to add a recorded meeting to Desire2Learn or get a link to send via email.                       

If you are wanting to get started right away, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with the following:

  • The “email classlist” feature on D2L. This is the surefire way to email all of your students quickly.
  • Zoom for meeting “in real time” with your class, or recording lectures for posting.
  • Faculty information as it becomes available on this site.

While Washburn faculty and staff will continue to report to work as usual for the foreseeable future, we ask you to prepare for the possibility of needing to work from off campus. For this reason, we suggest you follow ITS instructions on connecting to the campus network while off-campus, so you can access your network files from home. 

In addition to university-wide trainings, your deans will be letting you know of one or more faculty members in each academic unit who may be help you if you are not familiar with the features of D2L and Zoom. They may hold additional trainings or simply be available to you for help. 

We know this is a difficult and stressful time for you and your students. We also know our faculty members care deeply about students and about providing the best learning experience possible no matter the circumstances we are experiencing today. So, thank you again for your dedication and we so much appreciate the effort you will put forward in attempting to get through this with as little disruption as possible. 

If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to your department chairs, deans, or me. 

My sincerest thanks, 

JuliAnn Mazachek, Ph.D.
Vice President for Academic Affairs

  1. Communicate with your students right away: Even if you don't have a plan in place yet, communicate with your students as soon as possible, informing them that changes are coming and what your expectations are for checking email or Desire2Learn (WU’s learning management system), so you can get them more details soon.
  2. Consider realistic goals for continuing instruction: What do you think you can realistically accomplish during this time period? Do you think you can maintain your original syllabus and schedule? Do you hope students will keep up with the reading with some assignments to add structure and accountability? Do you just want to keep them engaged with the course content somehow?
  3. Review your course schedule to determine priorities: Identify your priorities during the disruption—providing lectures, structuring new opportunities for discussion or group work, collecting assignments, etc. What activities are better rescheduled, and what can or must be done online? Give yourself a little flexibility in that schedule, just in case the situation takes longer to resolve than you think.
  4. Review your syllabus for points that must change: What will have to temporarily change in your syllabus (policies, due dates, assignments, etc.)? Since students will also be thrown off by the changes, they will appreciate details whenever you can provide them.
  5. Pick tools and approaches familiar to you and your students: Try to rely on tools and workflows that are familiar to you and your students, and roll out new tools only when absolutely necessary. If a closure is caused by a local crisis, it may be already taxing everyone's mental and emotional energy; introducing a lot of new tools and approaches may leave even less energy and attention for learning.
  6. Identify your new expectations for students: You will have to reconsider some of your expectations for students, including participation, communication, and deadlines. As you think through those changes, keep in mind the impact this situation may have on students' ability to meet those expectations, including illness, lacking power or internet connections, or needing to care for family members. Be ready to handle requests for extensions or accommodations equitably.
  7. Create a more detailed communications plan: Once you have more details about changes in the class, communicate them to students, along with more information about how they can contact you (email, online office hours, etc.). A useful communication plan also lets students know how soon they can expect a reply. They will have many questions, so try to figure out how you want to manage that.

Instructions for Students

If you will be using Zoom to host live sessions, you can provide your students "Zoom Tips for Student Use" to help them prepare to use Zoom.

Option 1: Run Your Class Live With Zoom

This option works especially well when trying to move online quickly. 

The Tech Side: 

  • Schedule your class sessions
  • Be sure to test your audio, video and equipment well before the start of class and do not conduct these tests from a classroom. If you are facing a low bandwidth signal, shutting off your video will help. If you are experiencing connectivity issues, there are always call-in number options (with international options).
  • Record your class so students can review the session and have captioning available
  • Use the chat feature to answer questions or share learning resources
  • Share your screen to show slides or other materials and ask students to share their screens to present
  • Poll your students to check for understanding
  • Annotate and mark on the screen, or draw on a whiteboard
  • Break your class into groups for discussions or projects using the Breakout Rooms feature
  • Host virtual office hours
  • Engage with small groups or project teams

Pedagogical Recommendations

  • Use slides and screen sharing within Zoom to make sure discussion questions are visible to students who may have a slow Internet connection or who may struggle to hear the audio for the initial question. (Look for “Share Screen” at the bottom of your Zoom call.)
    • On your first slide, display an agenda at the start of the class session so that students know what to expect of the shared time together.
  • Use the chat (See In-Meeting Chat).
    • Moderate discussion, i.e., “call on” a student with a comment to speak, to help them break into the conversation. 
    • It may be worthwhile to ask a student (or two) to take on special roles as “chat monitors” to voice if there are questions that arise that the instructor has missed.
    • You might use the chat to troubleshoot technical problems. For example, if a student is having trouble connecting via audio or video, the chat might be a space for you as the instructor or for fellow students to work together to problem-solve. This may be an opportunity to assign a student to a special role, especially if you have students eager to help on the technical aspect of things. 
  • Use Zoom Breakout Rooms to help students talk in smaller groups (just as they would do break-out groups in a larger class environment). See Managing Video Breakout Rooms
  • Rethink your classroom activities to make the class more interactive even if Zoom students don’t have ideal connections and aren’t able to hear and see everything perfectly.
    • Have students write and comment together on a shared Word doc. 
    • Try using Polls to collect student responses, and then share results. 
  • Consider making discussion questions available in advance in Desire2Learn, etc. so that students can access the questions if screen sharing does not work. If sharing slides in advance to Desire2Learn, share as PDFs, they typically load quicker. 

A Few Troubleshooting Tips: 

  • If your microphone is not working, use the phone number listed in the Zoom invitation when you set up a Zoom call. You can use your phone as the microphone and audio source for your call rather than your computer’s built-in microphone if necessary. 
  • If your Internet connection is slow or lagging, consider temporarily turning off your video stream and only maintaining the audio stream. Sometimes, running the web camera on your computer will use up the Internet’s bandwidth in a way that might make communication challenging. Turning off the video should improve communication quality and consistency. 
  • If you have earbuds or a headphone set, wear them! Wearing earbuds or headphones will reduce the amount of noise that your computer will pick up during your quality, which will make it easier for your students to hear you. Similarly, you may want to advise your students to wear earbuds or headphones during the call. 
  • Advise students to mute their microphones if they are not speaking and unmute the microphones when they wish to speak. Students may be joining Zoom calls from all kinds of different locations, many of which may create background noise that could be distracting. Encourage students to mute themselves if they are not speaking to minimize unnecessary or distracting background noise.
  • Check the “chat” space for student questions and contributions. Some students may not have working microphones and, therefore, may be unable to contribute via voice. The chat room is a good place for students to contribute, ask questions, and be involved.
  • Check the Zoom Help Center 

Accessibility Suggestions: 

  • Automatic live captioning is not available in Zoom. Record your session to the Zoom cloud and an automatic transcript will be generated. You can then add that recording and transcript to your Desire2Learn course. (See Using Zoom to Record and Caption Lectures.)
  • For students who are blind or have low visibility, narrate the material that you’re displaying visually on the screen. Just as you might read materials aloud in class, read screen material that you share on-screen just in case students are not able to see essential text.

Option 2: Pre-Record Your Lectures

If you are not comfortable presenting live, another good option is to pre-record any lecture material and put the link to them in Desire2Learn.

The Tech Side: 

Pedagogical Recommendations

  • Test your microphone to make sure that you have good sound quality. Consider using a headset with an external microphone to capture better audio.
  • Consider ADA compliance. Automatic closed-captioning is not perfect. Speak clearly and not too quickly to make the content as accurate as possible. If using a tool other than Zoom for recording your lecture, consider uploading your videos to YouTube to take advantage of their automatic closed-captioning. And, when time allows, correct any errors in the captions.
  • Keep videos short and lively. It is often harder to focus on a video than on a person! Check out some tips for creating lively short online videos from online educator Karen Costa.
  • Integrate interaction with the lecture material. You might consider setting up a Desire2Learn discussion board with some specific questions, using a quiz, or setting up a chat session for a text-based live discussion. 

Option 3: Skip the Video

If you are not sure you have the right equipment and are uncomfortable with the tech setup, this might be a good option, at least for the short-term.

Pedagogical Recommendations

  • Annotate your slideshow with notes and share this with students using Desire2Learn or email.
  • Set up a discussion for students in Desire2Learn. Use specific, structured questions, and let students know expectations for their responses. See our recommendations on "Written Discussions" in the Other Use Cases section below. 
  • Share links to outside resources. Encourage students to watch videos, read articles, etc. 
  • Use Chat to have a live, text-based chat session with students. See our recommendations on "Chat" in the Other Use Cases section below.

You can set up virtual office hours to meet with students using Zoom, share your computer screen or collaborate using the whiteboard feature. If you are more comfortable, you can also give students your phone number to call, or you can set up an online chat ("Chat" in the Other Use Cases section below). 

Pedagogical Recommendations 

  • Keep the link to the Zoom room you’re using for your students in a central place on your course Desire2Learn site. The main factor to consider when holding office hours or conferences with students via Zoom is your accessibility as an instructor. Make sure they know how to find your “office” (just as you might offer them directions to your office on-campus). 
  • Encourage students to share their screen with you. Screen sharing is possible not just for the instructor in Zoom, but for students too. Help your students navigate towards a screen sharing option so that they can show you their written work on their screen.

Using Desire2Learn for Announcements, Sharing Material, Collecting Assignments, and Grading

Many instructors already use Desire2Learn regularly for tasks like sending announcements to their courses, sharing course materials, collecting assignments, and giving students grades and feedback. 

If you’re not already using Desire2Learn for some or any of these functions, this might be a good opportunity to become more familiar with the platform. 

    1. Click the Content link in the course menu
    2. Click the arrow to the right of the word "Syllabus" in the top center of the page
    3. Choose Add an Attachment
    4. Click the My Computer option
    5. Click the Upload button
    6. Find and open your syllabus (PDF is best)
    7. Click the Add button
  • Keep your students up to date by posting Announcements in Desire2Learn. Suggest that students check their Desire2Learn notification preferences to make sure they are set to receive announcements via email. 
  • Create an Online Assignment to allow students to submit files through Desire2Learn.
  • Upload your course content to Desire2Learn using the Files tool.
  • You can manually enter and edit grades in the Gradebook.

Written Discussions

To remove technical hurdles and to ensure that students are able to engage with peers and each other in a discussion-based class (even without a strong Internet connection), you might choose to move student discussion to an asynchronous format. Create a D2L Discussion as a place to facilitate communication, encourage students to interact, ask questions and respond to discussion prompts.

Pedagogical recommendations:

Chat

You may not currently use a chat function in your class, but it can be a useful tool, especially for student office hours or for students who may be more comfortable asking questions via chat compared to by phone or video calls. 

In Desire2Learn, there is a Chat tool available (in the course Resources menu) that functions as chat room.  When you create a new Chat, you can choose if it is meant to allow the whole class to enter and contribute (General Chat) or if it is going to be a one-on-one chat (Personal Chat).

Students access the chat through the Resources menu as well.

Pedagogical Recommendations: 

  • If students are sharing their presentations asynchronously
    • Ask students to record themselves at their screen, using a web camera, the built-in microphone on their computer, and screen sharing software combined to capture both their faces/persons as well as the slides on the screen. 
      • Zoom and Screencast-o-matic can be used for audio/video recording in this capacity, as can Quicktime (on Mac only). 
        Voiceover narration in slidedeck creation software can also be used via PowerPoint (Mac or PC), Keynote (Mac), or Quicktime (Mac).
      • Students can save their final recording file and upload it to 1. Washburn Video Server dropbox (must be set up in advance) or 2. YouTube (unlisted) and the link shared to a Desire2Learn Discussion or Assignment
        • Washburn Video Server dropbox or YouTube link to a D2L Assignment, the file will only be visible to the instructor.
        • If students submit the YouTube link via Desire2Learn Discussions, the file will be visible to the full class community. 
      • If students do not have access to a laptop computer or webcam, they can also use the voice memo feature on a phone to record audio, save audio files, and upload the audio files to Desire2Learn.
  • If students are sharing their presentations synchronously: 
    • Ask students to use Zoom to give a live presentation for their peers. See the section on Strategies (above) "Option 1: Run Your Class Live With Zoom" for suggestions and technical tips for using Zoom to this end.

Student-Facing Language for Students Giving Live Presentations

Your instructor will provide the link to the Zoom session. Simply click the link or paste into your browser of choice to open the meeting.

  • Audio and Video Setup 
    • After launching the Zoom meeting from the meeting URL, you will be prompted to join the room’s audio. Click “join audio by computer.” Zoom allows audio participation through your computer’s internal speakers, a headset, or a phone line. 
  • Mute Yourself/Stop Webcam 
    • To mute, click the microphone icon in the bottom-left corner. To unmute, click the microphone icon again. Follow the same process to turn the webcam on and off. 
    • Background noise can be minimized if you mute yourself when you’re listening.

Share Screen 

Participants are able to share applications or documents using Share Screen, if the host enables it. Before students can present their screen, the host needs to click the arrow to the right of "Share Screen" on their view and choose Advanced Sharing Options. The host then needs to indicate that "All Participants" can share. After selecting “Share Screen”, Zoom will present a list of all active applications and available desktops on your computer. You may also choose to share a whiteboard or iPhone/iPad. When the screen is shared, the bottom navigation menu will move to the top of the screen. To reposition the menu, simply click and drag. 

  • NOTE: By default, screen share opens in full screen. If you have the participants list and chat windows open (they will display on the right-hand side of the meeting), the windows will be hidden in full screen. Either click “Exit Full Screen” in the upper right corner or re-enable the windows by clicking “Manage Participants” and “Chat”. The annotation toolbar allows participants to draw and make comments on the shared screen. Your instructor may choose to disable this feature. To end the screen share, choose “Stop Share”

CTEL is regularly updating programs for faculty. Please check out their website regularly for an up-to-date schedule.

Communicate with students

Keeping in touch with students is vital during any changes to your class(es)—whether a planned absence on your part, or because of a crisis impacting all or part of campus. You'll want to let students know about changes in schedules, assignments, procedures, and broader course expectations. Early and frequent communication can ease student anxiety, and save you dealing with individual questions.

Keep these principles in mind:

  • Communicate early and often: Let students know about changes or disruptions as early as possible, even if all the details aren't in place yet, and let them know when they can expect more specific information. Don't swamp them with email, but consider matching the frequency of your messages with that of changes in class activities and/or updates to the broader crisis at hand (for example, the campus closure is extended for two more days; what will students need to know related to your course?).
  • Set expectations: Let students know how you plan to communicate with them, and how often. Tell students both how often you expect them to check their email, and how quickly they can expect your response.
  • Manage your communications load: You will likely receive some individual requests for information that could be useful to all your students, so consider keeping track of frequently asked questions and sending those replies out to everyone. This way, students know they might get a group reply in a day versus a personal reply within an hour. Also, consider creating an information page in Desire2Learn, and then encourage students to check there first for answers before emailing you.

Distribute course materials and readings

You will likely need to provide additional course materials to support your changing plans, from updated schedules to readings that allow you to shift more instruction online. In a pinch, providing some new readings and related assignments may be your best bet for keeping the intellectual momentum of the course moving.

Considerations when posting new course materials:

  • Make sure students know when new material is posted: If you post new materials in Desire2Learn, be sure to let students know what you posted and where. You might even ask that they change their Desire2Learn notification preferences to alert them when new materials are posted.
  • Keep things phone friendly: In a crisis, many students may only have a phone available, so make sure you are using mobile-friendly formats, PDFs being the most common. Consider saving other files (for example, PowerPoint presentations) to PDFs, which are easier to read on phones and tablets, and keep the file size small. It is fairly easy to reduce the size of PDF files using Adobe Acrobat, and there are online tools that do the same thing (for example, search Google for "PDF file size").

Deliver lectures

Depending on your course, you may need to deliver some lectures to keep the course moving along. Be aware, though, that a 45-minute live lecture sprinkled with questions and activities can become grueling when delivered online without intellectual breaks. Here are a few suggestions to improve online lectures:

  • Record in small chunks: Even the best online speakers keep it brief; think of the brevity of TED talks. We learn better with breaks to process and apply new information. To aid student learning, record any lectures in shorter (5-10 minute) chunks, and intersperse them with small activities that give students opportunities to process the new knowledge, make connections to other concepts, apply an idea, or make some notes in response to prompts. Smaller chunks also lead to smaller files, especially when using voiced-over PowerPoint presentations.
  • Be flexible with live video: Lecturing live with Zoom is certainly possible, and it best approximates a classroom setting, since students can ask questions. However, a crisis might mean some students won't have access to fast internet connections, and others may have their schedules disrupted. So, record any live classroom session, and be flexible about how students can attend and participate.
  • It's not just about content: If a crisis is disrupting classes, lectures can mean more than just providing course content; they also establish a sense of normalcy and a personal connection. In online courses, we talk about the importance of "instructor presence", and that's just as true during short-term online stints. So, consider ways that you can use lectures to make students feel connected and cared about: acknowledgement of current challenges, praise for good work, and reminders about the class being a community. This affective work can help their learning during a difficult time.

Foster communication and collaboration among students

Fostering communication among students is important because it allows you to reproduce any collaboration you build into your course, and maintains a sense of community that can help keep students motivated to participate and learn. It helps if you already had some sort of student-to-student online activity (for example, Canvas Discussions) since students will be used to both the process and the tool.

Consider these suggestions when planning activities:

  • Use asynchronous tools when possible: Having students participate in live Zoom conversations can be useful, but scheduling can be a problem, and only a few students will actively participate (just like in your classroom). In such cases, using asynchronous tools like D2L Discussions allows students to participate on their own schedules. In addition, bandwidth requirements for discussion boards are far lower than for live video tools.
  • Link to clear goals and outcomes: Make sure there are clear purposes and outcomes for any student-to-student interaction. How does this activity help them meet course outcomes or prepare for other assignments?
  • Build in simple accountability: Find ways to make sure students are accountable for the work they do in any online discussions or collaborations. Assigning points for online discussion posts can be tedious, so some instructors ask for reflective statements where students detail their contributions and reflect on what they learned from the conversation.
  • Balance newness and need: As with any changed activities, you will need to balance the needs and benefits of online collaboration with the additional effort such collaboration will require on everyone else's part. Learning new technologies and procedures might be counterproductive, particularly in the short term, unless there is clear benefit.

Collect assignments

Collecting assignments during a campus closure is fairly straightforward, since many instructors already collect work electronically. The main challenge during a campus disruption is whether students have access to computers, as anyone needing a campus computer lab may be unable to access necessary technologies. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Require only common software: Students may not have access to specialty software located in on-campus computer labs. Be ready with a backup plan for such students.
  • Avoid emailed attachments: It may be easy to collect assignments in small classes via email, but larger classes might swamp your email inbox. Consider using the tools below instead. Balance what is simplest for students with what is easiest for you to manage.
  • State expectations, but be ready to allow extensions: In the case of a campus closure or other crisis, some students will undoubtedly have difficulties meeting deadlines. Make expectations clear, but be ready to provide more flexibility than you normally would in your class.
  • Require specific filenames: It may sound trivial, but anyone who collects papers electronically knows the pain of getting 20 files named Essay1.docx. Give your students a simple file naming convention, for example, FirstnameLastname-Essay1.docx.

Assess student learning

It is fairly easy to give small quizzes to hold students accountable or do spot-checks on their learning, and this might be ideal to keep students on track during class disruptions. Providing high-stakes tests online can be challenging, however; they place extra stress on students, and test integrity is difficult to ensure. If you know there is a date for resuming on-campus classes, consider delaying exams until you return.

General tips for assessing student learning during class disruption:

  • Embrace short quizzes: Short quizzes can be a great way to keep students engaged with course concepts, particularly if they are interspersed with small chunks of video lecture. Consider using very-low-stakes quizzes to give students practice at applying concepts—just enough points to hold them accountable, but not so many that the activity becomes all about points.
  • Move beyond simple facts: It is good to reinforce concepts through practice on a quiz, but generally it is best to move beyond factual answers that students can quickly look up. Instead, write questions that prompt students to apply concepts to new scenarios, or ask them to identify the best of multiple correct answers.
  • Check for publishers' test banks: Look to see if your textbook publisher has question banks that can be loaded into D2L. Even if you don't use these questions for your exams, they can be useful for simple quizzes. Some textbooks also have their own online quizzing tools that can help keep students engaged with the material.
  • Update expectations for projects: Campus disruptions may limit students' access to resources they need to complete papers or other projects, and team projects may be harmed by a team's inability to meet. Be ready to change assignment expectations based on the limitations a crisis may impose. Possible options include allowing individual rather than group projects, having groups record presentations with Zoom, or adjusting the types of resources needed for research papers.
  • Consider alternate exams: Delivering a secure exam online can be difficult without a good deal of preparation and support, so consider giving open-book exams or other types of exams. They can be harder to grade, but you have fewer worries about test security.

Run lab activities

One of the biggest challenges of teaching during a building or campus closure is sustaining the lab components of classes. Since many labs require specific equipment, they are hard to reproduce outside of that physical space.

Considerations as you plan to address lab activities:

  • Take part of the lab online: Many lab activities require students to become familiar with certain procedures, and only physical practice of those processes will do. In such cases, consider if there are other parts of the lab experience you could take online (for example, video demonstrations of techniques, online simulations, analysis of data, other pre- or post-lab work), and save the physical practice parts of the labs until access is restored. The semester might get disjointed by splitting up lab experiences, but it might get you through a short campus closure.
  • Investigate virtual labs: Online resources and virtual tools might help replicate the experience of some labs (for example, virtual dissection, night sky apps, video demonstrations of labs, simulations). Those vary widely by discipline, but check with your textbook publisher, or sites such as Merlot for materials that might help replace parts of your lab during an emergency.
  • Provide raw data for analysis: In cases where the lab includes both collection of data and its analysis, consider showing how the data can be collected, and then provide some raw sets of data for students to analyze. This approach is not as comprehensive as having students collect and analyze their own data, but it might keep them engaged with parts of the lab experience during the closure.
  • Explore alternate software access: Some labs require access to specialized software that students cannot install on their own computers.
  • Increase interaction in other ways: Sometimes labs are more about having time for direct student interaction, so consider other ways to replicate that level of contact if it is only your lab that is out of commission.

Parts of this website are adapted from https://provost.tamu.edu/keep-teaching, https://keepteaching.iu.edu/index.html, and https://bit.ly/stanfordteachingdisruption.

Are you feeling stuck? Reach out to the professionals for assistance!

If you need technical help, please contact Support at support@washburn.edu or 785.670.3000.
If you need teaching or pedagogical help, please contact the Center for Teaching Excellence and Learning at ctel@washburn.edu or 785.670.2835.

Health and Safety for Washburn Students

You will have access to the student health center while on campus. Services include treatment of ailments and injuries, with referral to other medical facilities as necessary.

Washburn University also has its own police force, to keep our campus safe and secure. Your student can sign up for iAlert, an emergency notification system.

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