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Frequently Asked Questions

Vaccine Requirements

Yes, effective June 1, all students who access campus during the summer must be fully vaccinated with submitted documentation in the Student Patient Portal.  

For new students accessing campus beginning Fall 2021, you must upload your vaccination records to the Student Patient Portal by July 1.

Medical and religious exemption requests will be reviewed through the Student Patient Portal.

Students with questions about their vaccination status may contact the Barnes Center for further guidance.

We continue to monitor regulations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state public health officials regarding vaccinations obtained outside of the U.S. In accordance with the current guidance from the CDC, vaccinations that have been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) for emergency use will be accepted as proof of vaccination at this time. As of June 1, 2021, the WHO has approved Moderna, Johnson & Johnson/Janssen, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sinovac and the Serum Institute of India vaccines. We encourage students who have received their COVID-19 vaccination abroad to upload their documentation in the Patient Portal. The WHO continues to review other vaccines and we will continue to update our community as new information becomes available.

Yes, you can receive another vaccine 28 days after your previous vaccine was administered.

If the same vaccine is available, you can receive your second dose in the U.S.

If the vaccine is not available in the U.S., you will need to restart the vaccination series with the new vaccine 28 days after your previous vaccine was administered.

In accordance with the current New York State COVID travel advisory, asymptomatic travelers are not required to quarantine. Quarantine is recommended, however, for travelers who are not fully vaccinated or have not recovered from laboratory confirmed COVID-19 during the previous 3 months. Please note that for the purposes of the travel advisory, New York State defines “fully vaccinated” as being 2 or more weeks after the final dose (e.g., first for Janssen/Johnson & Johnson, second for Pfizer and Moderna) of a vaccine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or authorized by the FDA for emergency use. Vaccines that are not authorized by the FDA for emergency use or approved by the FDA do not satisfy this definition. 

Fully vaccinated individuals who have not recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months are recommended to get tested 3-5 days after arrival in New York from international travel.

All unvaccinated international travelers who have not recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months are recommended to get tested 3-5 days after arrival in New York, consider non-mandated self-quarantine (7 days if tested on day 3-5, otherwise 10 days), and avoid contact with people at higher risk for severe disease for 14 days, regardless of test result.

In accordance with the New York State COVID travel advisory, if you are unable to complete your vaccinations prior to traveling, and if you are asymptomatic, you are not required to quarantine. It is recommended that if you are unvaccinated and have not recovered from COVID-19 in the past 3 months that you to get tested 3-5 days after arrival in New York, consider non-mandated self-quarantine (7 days if tested on day 3-5, otherwise 10 days), and avoid contact with people at higher risk for severe disease for 14 days, regardless of test result.

Yes. To search for a vaccination site and schedule an appointment, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s search tool. This site also allows you to search based on vaccine.

No. You can plan to receive a WHO-approved vaccine in the U.S. 28 days after your previous vaccine was administered. Students with questions about their vaccination status may contact the Barnes Center for further guidance.

At this time, the Barnes Center at The Arch does not have a vaccine supply. If vaccine becomes available on campus through the Barnes Center at The Arch to support Fall semester arrivals, we will notify the campus community.

At this time, vaccination sites in Central New York are not requiring address documentation.

Students should plan to arrive early enough to complete both doses of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine prior to accessing campus. For the Moderna vaccine, there is a 28-day period between doses, and for the Pfizer vaccine, there is a 21-day period between doses.

The Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine only requires one shot. As soon as students have received their vaccine and uploaded documentation into the Student Patient Portal, they can access campus.

No.  To access campus, you must either be fully vaccinated or have a valid medical or religious exemption on file with the Barnes Center. Students with questions about their vaccination status may contact the Barnes Center for further guidance.

The following vaccination records and documentation must be submitted to the Student Patient Portal:

  • Two Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) vaccinations
  • Meningococcal meningitis (Type A) vaccination within the last five years and after the age of 16, or signed Meningitis Waiver Form
  • Tuberculosis (TB) Screening Questionnaire

Vaccination is the single most important step that we can all take to protect ourselves, loved ones, our campus and community from severe COVID-19 infection, hospitalization and death. A widely vaccinated community safeguards the health, wellness and safety of our students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community. Vaccination is a critical factor that will allow Syracuse University to return to more normal operations.

The expectation is that the vast majority of our community will receive a vaccination. The only exception to this requirement will be for individuals who have a medical or religious exemption.

We continue to monitor regulations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state public health officials regarding vaccinations obtained outside of the U.S. In accordance with the current guidance from the CDC, vaccinations that have been approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) for emergency use will be accepted as proof of vaccination at this time. As of June 1, 2021, the WHO has approved Moderna, Johnson & Johnson/Janssen, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Sinopharm, Sinovac and the Serum Institute of India vaccines. We encourage students who have received their COVID-19 vaccination abroad to upload their documentation in the Patient Portal. The WHO continues to review other vaccines and we will continue to update our community as new information becomes available.

Please visit https://www.syracuse.edu/staysafe/get-vaccinated/ for the most up to date information on where you can obtain a COVID-19 vaccination.

The vaccination requirement will go into effect on June 1 for all students, faculty and staff who access campus over the summer months. All new and returning students, as well as faculty and staff, will be required to be vaccinated prior to the fall 2021 semester.

The vaccination requirement will apply to all new and returning students, faculty and staff for the Fall 2021 semester.

For students who have already been vaccinated or choose to be vaccinated at an off-campus location, please submit your documentation through the Student Patient Portal.

If a student has received their vaccination abroad and it is not the Johnson & Johnson, Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, the student should upload their vaccination documentation in the Patient Portal using the following directions:

  • Log into the Patient Portal with your SU NetID and password.
  • Select the “Immunizations” tab from the top menu, and select “Enter Dates”
  • Under the “Required Immunizations” heading, under “COVID-19 Vaccine NOT LISTED,” enter the dates(s) and click Submit.
  • Once the date(s) have been submitted, select the “Upload” tab from the top menu.
  • Follow all upload instructions.
  • In the drop-down menu labeled “Choose Document,” select “COVID Proof of Vaccination.”
  • Click “Select a file,” choose the file containing your vaccination documents, and click “Upload.”

Please note, documentation must be translated into English in order to be reviewed.

For faculty and staff, consistent with the University’s flu vaccination protocol, in the coming days you will receive and are expected to complete a brief COVID-19 Vaccine Status attestation questionnaire.

If you have already submitted a waiver for another vaccination, you do not need to take any further action. If you do not have a waiver form on file, you must upload the form and supporting documentation into the Patient Portal:

  • Log in to the Patient Portal with your SU NetID and password.
  • Select “Forms” from the main menu.
  • Under Student Forms, select the “Medical-Religious Waiver” form to print the waiver to sign.
  • Once you have signed the waiver and added required supporting documentation, select “Upload” on the home screen.
  • Follow the upload instructions.
  • In the drop-down section, select “Medical or Religious Waiver Form.”
  • Select the completed waiver file to upload.

As summarized by the Centers for Disease Control (“CDC”): “Over 167 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through April 5, 2021. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. COVID-19 vaccines were evaluated in tens of thousands of participants in clinical trials. The vaccines met FDA’s rigorous scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality needed to support emergency use authorization (EUA).” Anyone with concerns about receiving the vaccine should consult with their doctor.

Stay Safe Pledge

The Stay Safe Pledge will be modified to respond to changing pandemic-related conditions as well as health and safety directives from federal, state and local officials. Several changes have been made to the Stay Safe Pledge for Summer 2021, including:

  • Providing documentation of COVID-19 vaccination or exemption to the Barnes Center before accessing campus.
  • Wearing a mask and maintaining 6 feet of distance from others if not vaccinated and accessing campus with a medical or religious exemption.
  • Wearing a mask in certain designated locations, such as the Barnes Center health office or Flanagan Gymnasium health clinic.

During a public health emergency, certain aspects of your medical information—including a positive COVID-19 test result—can be required to be shared with public health authorities, including the Barnes Center. Failure to notify Syracuse University of a positive test result may hinder accurate contact tracing and put your close contacts—including roommates, classmates and faculty—at risk of spreading the virus. 

 

COVID-19 is often spread by individuals who do not know they are infected and exhibit no symptoms. Timely participation in contact tracing is essential to limiting the spread of the virus.

COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility and Availability

Currently, there are three COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are both mRNA vaccines. mRNA vaccines are a new type of vaccine to protect against infectious diseases. They teach our cells how to make a protein—or even just a piece of a protein—that triggers an immune response inside our bodies. That immune response, which produces antibodies, is what protects us from getting infected if the real virus enters our bodies. The mRNA is destroyed by your body within approximately five days and does not alter your genetic code in any way.

Johnson and Johnson is a viral vector vaccine. Viral vector vaccines use a modified version of a different virus (the vector) to deliver important instructions to our cells. For COVID-19 viral vector vaccines, the vector (not the virus that causes COVID-19, but a different, harmless virus) will enter a cell in our body and then use the cell’s machinery to produce a harmless piece of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Both vaccines deliver genetic instructions that help our immune system develop antibodies to the COVID-19 spike protein. If exposed to COVID-19, you will be ready to neutralize the actual virus.  Pfizer and Moderna require two doses, 21 and 28 days apart and Johnson and Johnson is only one dose. With Pfizer and Moderna, both doses of the vaccines need to be from the same manufacturer.    

COVID-19 vaccines cannot give someone COVID-19 or other infections.

To date, all three vaccines have completely prevented severe disease and death. Hospitalizations are beginning to fall among age groups that first received the vaccines.

It has been widely reported that the three vaccines differ slightly in their effectiveness. However, it is important to note that vaccines’ protective efficacies determined in studies are not directly comparable due to differences in populations, different definitions of disease and different methods of measuring disease.  

For example, efficacies widely reported state that Moderna is 100% effective against severe disease, Pfizer is 90% and Johnson & Johnson is 85%, but these are not directly comparable. Additionally, reports of overall efficacy state 94-95% for Pfizer and Moderna and 66% for Johnson & Johnson, however the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was the only one studied outside the US, where different strains of COVID-19 are more common. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommends you get any COVID-19 vaccine that is available when you are eligible and to not wait for a specific brand. CDC does not recommend one authorized vaccine over another.

The vaccines’ safety has been tested in more than 300,000 people during the trials, without any indication of severe complications. To date, millions of people have already received the vaccine without complication. More than 95% of doctors have gotten the vaccine themselves.

The mRNA platform (Moderna and Pfizer) is new for vaccines, but its safety is well tested. The mRNA technology is more than 30 years old. It has been used in numerous anti-cancer and anti-infectious disease vaccine candidates. The mRNA is destroyed by your body within 5 days and does not alter your genetic code. Viral vector vaccines (like the Johnson & Johnson) were created by scientists in the 1970s and two Ebola vaccines using this technology were used recently in Africa.

Although the process for developing the COVID-19 vaccine was fast, it was not rushed. The vaccines are built on decades of investment in the National Institutes of Health scientific discovery. Vaccine development has been accelerating as a result of this scientific discovery. The development of the COVID-19 vaccines benefits from this scientific discovery and is even faster than normal due to the unprecedented scientific, government and industry collaborations. Regulatory processes were streamlined, and vaccines proved effective in a short period of time because of the incredible amount of COVID-19 circulating when the trials were run. The vaccines were held to rigorous safety and effectiveness standards. 

To further enhance COVID-19 vaccine safety monitoring, the CDC has rolled out a new smartphone-based, after-vaccination health checker.  It is called V-safe.  It is the most comprehensive vaccine safety monitoring system in history.     

To date, there have been no serious adverse events following the vaccine. Comparatively the rate of death from COVID-19 for people aged 18-29 is 3 in 10,000 cases. Allergic reactions can happen but they are rare. The rate of severe allergic reaction is about 1-2 cases per million doses, and most often happens within 30 minutes. If you have a history of anaphylaxis or other severe reaction to another vaccine or injectable medication you should consult your personal medical provider prior to getting the vaccine. If you have a history of allergic reaction to food or venom (such as bee stings), you should be observed for 30 minutes following the vaccine instead of the standard 15-minute observation. Most people (50-70%) reported arm pain and soreness following the vaccine. About half of people report fever, fatigue, headaches, chills, or muscle or joint aches that fade after a day or two.

At this point, it is unclear how long immunity will last.   The vaccine manufacturers are looking at emerging new strains of COVID-19 and developing new booster vaccines.  It may be that in the future we will need an annual COVID-19 shot much like an annual Flu shot which is updated based on which strains are circulating.  If you have been infected with COVID-19, it is still a good idea to get vaccinated if you have completed your isolation.

Ten different vaccines are being administered around the world. The Pfizer vaccine is currently being used in 68 countries. Several more countries have approved vaccines but have yet to begin administrations. Most of the vaccines currently in use require two doses for a patient to be fully vaccinated.

There are many reasons why someone may be hesitant to get the vaccine. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that approves vaccines is a non-partisan civil service organization and the vaccines have been approved by organizations like the FDA across the world.

Communities of color and marginalized identities have historically experienced abuse by health care systems or have had less access to health care systems. This has led to legacy vaccine hesitancy among these populations. But in this pandemic, numerous communities of color are leading the way in vaccine acceptance, deployment, and getting us back to normal.

To learn more about this history and the COVID-19 vaccines, you can participate in our on-demand Wellness Leadership Institute workshop: “Vaccine History, Hesitancy, and the COVID-19 Vaccine."

Important Information About COVID Testing

For all members of our campus community—including family members of our employees—the University will continue to provide convenient access to on-campus testing services at Kimmel Dining Hall during the summer months. The testing center’s hours of operations are:

  • Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Friday, 8-11 a.m.
  • Closed on Friday, June 18, in observance of Juneteenth, and on Monday, July 5, in observance of Independence Day

No appointments are required. Please bring your Syracuse University I.D. and refrain from eating, drinking anything (including water), brushing your teeth or using mouthwash, chewing gum or using any tobacco products in the 30 minutes prior to testing. Parking is available at Comstock Avenue Garage.

No. Only students, faculty and staff who are accessing campus under a valid medical or religious vaccine exemption are required to test weekly. Compliance with this requirement will be monitored regularly.

Weekday testing will be available at Kimmel Dining Hall during the summer months as below. Parking will be available at Comstock Avenue Garage during this period for those being tested.

  • Monday-Thursday: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Friday: 8-11 a.m.
  • Saturday and Sunday: Closed

Students can submit COVID-19 test results/documentation by logging into the Student Patient Portal. Log in using your SU NetID and password, click “Upload Forms,” select “COVID-19 Documents” and follow upload instructions.

Contact tracers will notify anyone who is determined to have been exposed by phone and their University email.

Working closely with the Onondaga County Department of Health, Syracuse University created our own contact tracing team. Acknowledging the personal nature of this task, the unique attributes of an academic environment and the broad diversity represented across our campus community, we believe that it’s important that the duties and responsibilities associated with contact tracing be performed by culturally competent individuals who themselves represent our community.

Students, faculty and staff will be contacted by phone and via their Syracuse University email. It is critically important that your current local address and phone number are updated in MySlice and we strongly encourage all members of the campus community to ensure that their information is updated and to regularly monitor your University email.

The Center for Disability Resources and the Office of Equal Opportunity, Inclusion and Resolution Services have fully participated in the Fall 2020 Task Force, which includes a subcommittee on Disability-related Considerations to ensure that the concerns of people with disabilities are reflected in policies and that accommodations are easily accessible.

Quarantine and Isolation

If a student tests positive, the University will deploy its response protocol, which prioritizes the health of the student as well as the safety and well-being of the community. The student will be immediately moved via a Syracuse University medical transport to isolation housing. These rooms will be physically separated from other residential student rooms, have a private bathroom, and be stocked with a thermometer, sanitizing wipes, tissues, soap, hand sanitizer and toiletries. While isolated, the student will be assigned a case manager to support all academic, health, housing and dining needs. For those students who are ill or asymptomatically positive, to the degree reasonably feasible, these isolated students will be encouraged to continue academic activities remotely or be provided with academic accommodations due to illness.

The contact tracing process will identify all close contacts of the positive individual during the timeframe the individual was likely contagious. All those close contacts will be directed to quarantine. Some of those close contacts will likely be others in the class, but not all. If a faculty member tests positive, that faculty member must isolate until a negative test is achieved. Consequently, it follows that this faculty member cannot be in a classroom for that period.

Students in quarantine and isolation are contacted by their pod leader, normally a student services staff member, and provided with their email and cell phone number.  Pod leaders are responding to emails and texts with requests and concerns from students almost 24/7. They are responsible for facilitating all student services needs including facilities, food services, academic and logistical assistance (e.g. comfort items, how to get packages and deliveries, the process for being cleared by the health department and the COVID office for release).  Students can obtain health and counseling services by calling the Barnes Center, and if they need to be seen in person they are provided with transportation to and from the Barnes Center from the quarantine or isolation site. 

Rooms are pre-stocked with shelf-stable snacks, drinks, condiments and plastic utensils as well as a refillable water bottle.  Meals are delivered to each isolation location and labeled with the student’s name.  Students can order food for delivery, as long as they use a contactless payment method.  Students can also have pharmacy items delivered by the Barnes Center pharmacy and the Bookstore.

Students in isolation (those who have tested positive whether asymptomatic or symptomatic) receive a daily call from a Barnes Center healthcare provider who monitors their symptoms and vitals.  A Syracuse University contact tracer also reaches out to students regularly, and students may also be contacted by the Onondaga County Health Department.

Students in quarantine and isolation in Skyhalls or South Campus apartments are allowed to leave their rooms to do laundry, pick up food or deliveries from designated areas, to visit health care providers and for daily scheduled outdoor time. Students quarantining in the Sheraton must remain in their rooms.

All students in quarantine or isolation provide a detailed guide from their pod leader that includes:

  • Contact Information
  • What to Pack
  • Quarantine or Isolation Procedures and Policies
  • Health, Wellness and Pharmacy Information
  • Food Services and Outside Food Delivery Information
  • Laundry Services and Schedules
  • Facilities Information
  • Academic Information
  • Information about engagement and activities
  • Package Drop-Off and Delivery
  • Additional information about COVID-19

Financial Assistance

The pandemic has created financial hardship for many in our community. Please know there may be financial assistance available.

Masks

Effective Monday, May 24, and until further notice, Syracuse University’s policy is as follows:

Masking Outdoors

  • Fully vaccinated members of our campus community (students, faculty and staff) do not need to wear a mask while outdoors on the Syracuse University campus.
  • Unvaccinated members of our campus community should continue to wear a mask while outdoors in the company of others on the Syracuse University campus.
  • All individuals, regardless of vaccine status, will be supported if they choose to wear a mask while outdoors on the Syracuse University campus.
  • All visitors to campus (i.e., campus tour groups, other short-term visitors) must adhere to the masking policy above while on campus in outdoor settings.

Masking Indoors

  • Fully vaccinated members of our campus community (students, faculty and staff) do not need to wear a mask or social distance while indoors on campus.
  • Unvaccinated members of our campus community (students, faculty and staff) should continue to wear a mask and practice social distancing indoors.
  • All individuals, regardless of vaccine status, will be supported if they choose to wear a mask while indoors on the Syracuse University campus.
  • All visitors to campus (i.e., campus tour groups, other short-term visitors) must adhere to the policy above while inside buildings on campus.

Yes. Any individual accessing our campus—including visitors and contractors—is expected to follow the masking policy above that applies to students, faculty and staff.

Yes. All individuals, regardless of vaccine status, will be supported if they choose to wear a mask while on the Syracuse University campus.

Housing

Yes, you will be able to receive a prorated room and board credit dated to the day you left your on-campus housing assignment, provided that you move all of your belongings out of your residence, follow check-out procedures as instructed, and return your key before you leave.

You would first need to register with the Center for Disability Resources (CDR - formerly the Office of Disability Services). If approved, the CDR will alert you that you are eligible to participate in the COVID Medical Consideration process, and will be able to request a housing relocation or accommodation.

First- and second-year students are required to reside on campus. Third-year students and above do not have a housing requirement and can therefore seek off-campus housing after they have completed their on-campus requirement. Off-Campus and Commuter Services is a good resource for students living off campus.

If you are uncomfortable living in your on-campus housing assignment, you can explore a distance-learning option. If you complete a full year of distance learning, you will not need to reside on campus your third year to fulfill the housing requirement.

We are still working through this and will provide an update when we have confirmed information to share.

Not during quarantine. After the student is released from quarantine, students in the same residence hall can interact as long as they follow the guidelines in the Stay Safe Pledge as well as residential policies and directives.

No, students can’t visit students in South Campus apartments or in other residence halls.

No they will not be able to visit other South Campus apartments just as students living in residence halls will not be able to visit other residence halls.

No, students will be moved to isolation housing.

Yes.

Health Promotion and Prevention

All students are required to affirm that they will abide by all actions required by the updated Stay Safe Pledge.

Students are also required to abide by all directives from state and local public health authorities and to follow any and all guidelines of the New York State Travel and Quarantine Advisory prior to returning to campus.

Students will participate in an educational program prior to their return to campus focused on health and wellness issues and actions most appropriate during and beyond the COVID-19 health emergency. Further, as a condition of returning to campus, students will be required to affirmatively commit to a social compact statement (that is currently being finalized) that defines expectations related to behaviors and actions appropriate to protect their health and the health of those around them.

First, it is important for all members of our community to understand that enforcing social distancing standards and other measures of prevention is everyone’s responsibility. It is a shared expectation that all students, faculty and staff will not only themselves adhere to the directives and policies in place to safeguard public health—but also remind others to do the same when necessary. As a condition of returning to campus, students will be required to affirmatively commit to the updated Stay Safe Pledge. Students who are identified to have acted with disregard for their health and the health of those around them will be referred to the student judicial process for a violation of the Code of Student Conduct.

Facilities Considerations

Yes, the University has already built out the infrastructure to comply with all Centers for Disease Control (CDC)-mandated cleaning and sanitation protocols, including increased cleaning of public spaces, bathrooms, HVAC systems and other components. Specifically, these include enhanced cleaning and sanitation of classrooms, laboratories, studios and performance venues, libraries, residence halls, dining halls, recreation spaces, gathering spaces and other high-traffic areas. The University utilizes disinfectants that have been identified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as appropriate to eliminate the SARS-CoV-2 virus (cause of COVID-19). For information on cleaning and disinfecting efforts in work areas, please visit ehss.syr.edu/about/covid-19-information/work-area-cleaning-and-disinfecting/

In addition to daily cleaning, public restrooms are being monitored multiple times throughout the day to ensure cleanliness. Several times each day, staff disinfect high-touch surfaces such as doorknobs and sink faucets using disinfectants identified by the EPA as qualified for use against the COVID-19 virus. In addition, all electric forced-air hand dryers have been removed from restrooms to avoid spreading airborne particles.

The University closely monitored CDC and other public health guidance to prepare campus buildings for increased indoor ventilation during the COVID-19 health crisis.  Over the summer, all building ventilation systems were reviewed to both perform preventative maintenance and verify that systems were operating properly.  Where possible, modifications to ventilation systems were made to follow the most current guidance, including increasing air flow, retrofitting systems with MERV 13 filters, providing UV-C lighting in the air handling  system of health care facilities, operating exhaust fans in all restrooms 24/7, and providing mobile UV-C air cleaning systems in classrooms and labs that have reduced air flow.

For International Students

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement provides answers here.

For Faculty

Faculty and staff may be tested at the Kimmel Dining Hall Testing Center during operating hours. No appointment is necessary.

Faculty and staff can also find one of the many testing sites in Onondaga County that is most convenient for them by visiting the New York State COVID-19 Test Site Finder, where you can search by zip code. 

The faculty and staff health plan covers COVID-19 testing conducted at other testing sites. 

For classes that combine in-person and online teaching, several ways to organize the remote component of the course can be employed. Of course, faculty know themselves and their classes best, so they can be creative in finding approaches that work best for the content and their students. Definitions of some models and other resources are available on Answers (a NetID is required for login).

Faculty who wish to design their courses using these and/or other approaches are encouraged to engage with the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE) to explore their ideas.

There are numerous resources being offered.

  • Course design and course building support services will be coordinated by the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE), Information Technology Services’ Online Learning Services (OLS) and Syracuse University Global’s Center for Digital Online Learning.
  • Faculty can also request support services to digitize content, evaluate online instruction and assessment options, request video production training and support, and engage in technology-enhanced instruction and online pedagogy workshops.
  • We encourage all faculty to fill out the Fall Course Development Form to request support or to submit questions about specific aspects of online instruction and preparation.
  • Faculty are also encouraged to bring questions to virtual “office hours” where they can meet with instructional designers and course builders every Tuesday at 6 p.m. EDT and every Thursday at 10 a.m. EDT. Join the sessions here.

Additionally, course development resources include:

The most recent update can be found here.

For Graduate Students and Teaching Assistants

1. If you are an instructor of record, fully responsible for teaching a course, you can access resources for support through the Spring Course Development Form. Completing the form and submitting it will get you to a consultant who can support you in meeting your teaching needs.  Please review the information for faculty and staff for additional resources.

2. If you are a TA in a course and will be responsible for recitation(s), reach out to your lead faculty member. The lead faculty member can provide you direction for outcomes to reach in the recitation section and information regarding expectations for those sections. If the lead faculty is willing, you can make an appointment with help@syr.edu to be directed to a team member who can assist in planning. Team members are ready to support faculty-TA teams in working through instructional expectations for recitation sections.

3. If you have taught a course before, you can start reviewing the Teaching Preparedness Checklist.

Most, but not all, graduate courses will include in-person instruction. Many in-person courses will also include online components to accommodate social distancing requirements and students who require remote learning. A smaller subset of classes will be provided in online-only format. Still other courses will be listed as in-person only. As such, the general expectation is that graduate students should be on campus to attend courses in person. It is also understood that health concerns for individual graduate students may require that you attend courses remotely. For that reason, most but not all courses can also be taken remotely. You are encouraged to consult with faculty from within your individual program to confirm best options for online only courses. A process for indicating that you intend to enroll for remote instruction only will be forthcoming. Please read below for important considerations for international students regarding maintaining immigration status.

We recognize that because of delays in visa processing, many of our new and continuing graduate students will be unable to arrive on campus in time for in-person instruction. For international graduate students who are unable to return to campus, most programs will offer the opportunity to complete coursework online from their home country. Newly matriculated international graduate students will receive a survey to indicate their intentions to complete course work online or in-person in a future communication. All affected students are encouraged to consult with faculty leadership from your program to determine options for online study, in-person course work, leaves of absence or – for new students – whether program deferral is necessary.

Regrettably, new students from Iran, Syria, Sudan, and Cuba will have to defer admission because of previously existing government sanctions. Students from these countries may not start the semester fully online.

The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) has recently indicated that Fall 2020 guidance remains in effect for Spring 2021. Therefore, international students who were in the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status on March 9, 2020 and who intend to be in the U.S. for the spring semester must register full-time (minimum 9 credit hours) unless it is their last semester of study (must file a Last Semester memo with the Center for International Services) or file a Certificate of Full-time Status with the Registrar’s Office. Enrollment may be completely online. 

International graduate students who arrived in the U.S. in Fall 2020 or who will arrive in Spring 2021 must register full-time (minimum 9 credit hours) and must be enrolled in at least one in person or hybrid course. We will work closely with all international graduate students to ensure that you are able to register for in-person courses under our hybrid instructional model.

Some graduate students’ research progress may be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Degree completion timelines follow departmental guidelines. Departments are asked to be compassionate in reviewing expectations for student progress. Where appropriate, students may petition for an adjustment to their degree completion timeline. For more information, please contact Associate Dean Gabby Chapman.

Returning/continuing students who hold assistantships and are continuing their research, teaching or other activities consistent with their educational training and degree program may receive their stipend consistent with these activities. New or returning Students designated to receive funding from a fellowship can still receive the fellowship stipend, assuming their home department is in agreement with the arrangement. 

New graduate students who begin graduate study in their home country may only receive remitted tuition if originally included in their admission package.

In planning for our Fall 2020 academic start, health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty are our first priority. The University is adopting extensive measures to protect community health and safety, including the use of rigorous testing and surveillance protocols, required use of masks on campus, and adoption of alternating day class attendance and hybrid instructional approaches to ensure sufficient social distancing in our classrooms, studios, performance venues, and other instructional spaces.

We anticipate that a majority of undergraduate and graduate courses will include a face-to-face component. It is also understood that health concerns for individual graduate students and their family members – as with individual faculty – may require that teaching activities be limited to remote instruction only. Schools, colleges and programs will provide an opportunity for graduate instructors and graduate TAs to indicate if a health concern necessitates an online-only instructional approach. You will not be asked to disclose any personal health information as part of this request and the University will not penalize you in any way for making the decision that is best for you. 

If you require a TA assignment that does not include in-person instruction based on a health concern for you or someone you live with, please communicate this need directly to your TA supervisor, graduate program director, or department chair.

If, after consulting with relevant faculty members in your department, you still have concerns or questions about your TA assignment or workload expectations, please don’t hesitate to contact Graduate School Dean Peter Vanable or Associate Dean Gabby Chapman for additional support.

The Spring 2021 semester will be unusual, and we understand that graduate teaching assistants will be asked to assist with hybrid and flexible course formats in new ways. That said, it is still an absolute expectation that departments stick with the time commitment specified in your teaching assistantship appointment letter, typically 20 hours or less per week.