University of Alabama plans to return on campus this fall

From the WRBL Internship Assignment Desk

This story was produced as part of the WRBL 2020 Summer Intern program

Script “A” logo formed by class of 2021 (Photo Creds: University of Alabama)

The University of Alabama has notified parents and students that there will be classes in the fall. Classes are set to start on August 19 with some classes being face-to-face, online and hybrid.

 All UA students, faculty and staff will be tested for the coronavirus before their return to campus this fall. The test will be free to all students through the statewide Stay Safe Together program for Alabama. While the university will cover the cost of the test for all faculty and staff.

Every student must receive their negative test results before returning to campus. If tested positive, students must follow the isolation and quarantine protocols of the state. You must be cleared by a healthcare provider before you return to campus.

Most classes are set to provide some type of in-person instruction. Classes will change weekly to lower the number of students in a class at a time. Many class sections are dropping students and adding on more sections for student to choose, to achieve smaller class sizes.

UA faculty will use a rotating attendance approach for teaching that joins in-person and remote classes to help prevent the spread of the virus. All classrooms will have webcams for recording and streaming lectures.

Faculty in each college have been working to come up with a plan to provide as much in-person classes as possible. Course delivery methods are changing to reflect the plan to return on campus in conjunction with health and safety guidelines.

Social distancing and face coverings are required everywhere on campus, including the buses. Required education and training tools for students, faculty and staff are also required before their return to campus.

Fall semester classes are set to go all online after November 20. Mid-semester break, also known as fall break, is canceled. Finals week will remain the same and will be conducted virtually.

UA has decided to make these changes to avoid higher risks of the virus caused by holiday travel. There are additional options available for those who are in special programs and international students.

The university will also undertake random testing throughout the semester to assure the numbers of cases on campus stay as low as possible.

“We all pledge to abide by the Capstone Creed, our responsibilities this fall include wearing a mask, social distancing, washing our hands, cleaning and disinfecting our workspaces, and limiting events and activities where those guidelines cannot be achieved. These rules and protocols are strictly enforced on campus,” said President of the school, Dr.Bell.

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