Tarleton State University’s plan moving forward for fall 2020

By: Alexis Burkett

As of this March, Tarleton State University transitioned to online classes following the COVID-19 pandemic. With everything going on many students are left wondering what the fall semester will hold and the class options that will be available.

After nearly six months of online coursework, students are eager to know what the fall semester will hold at Tarleton. Tarleton’s Director of Creative Services Ms. Robin DeMott answered questions regarding what the fall semester would look like.

DeMott said, “Tarleton State University is offering both Hy-flex and online classes this fall. Hy-flex is a delivery mode that incorporates a combination of face-to-face class meetings, remote sessions where students and faculty may connect via technology such as Zoom and truly online assignments and activities that are often completed asynchronously. The Hy-flex model will allow faculty and students the flexibility to deliver and receive course content while also honoring social distancing expectations. Additionally, we will continue with our practice of offering online courses, particularly in those disciplines where this has been a longstanding practice.”

There is no expectation that the cost of tuition will vary because of the unknown circumstances surrounding the upcoming semester, although many face-to-face classes have been converted to online or Hy-flex classes.

DeMott said “Deans, department heads and faculty have worked together to determine the most appropriate delivery method for each of our courses given our plans for social distance this fall. In many cases, a single course may be offered with both a Hy-flex and an online section to provide options for both faculty and students.”

Rather than limited class sizes, Tarleton is accommodating COVID-19 rules and procedures by evaluating the educational facilities to determine the maximum capacity that follows the CDC guidelines on social distancing to best suit the class sized to classrooms.

DeMott said, “Faculty will work with their respective classes to set a schedule for any applicable face-to-face instruction, often with one-third of a class meeting each day of a three-day-a-week course and one-half meeting each day of a two-day-a-week course.”

Meeting on campus again raises questions pertaining to the possibility of an outbreak on campus. COVID-19 statistics are steadily increasing by the day and even without students on campus Erath county has surpassed 100 cases of coronavirus.

DeMott said, “Tarleton will continue to follow guidance from state and local public health authorities when students are advised to isolate upon testing positive for COVID-19 or quarantine for those who have come in close contact with an individual who has tested positive. It is our goal to provide support services to our students whether they choose to return home to isolate or quarantine or decide to remain in an on-campus residential facility. The CDC defines “close contact” as any individual who was within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from two days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, two days prior to positive specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.”

For more information regarding COVID-19’s impact on Tarleton State University visit https://www.tarleton.edu/coronavirus/students/index.html

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