Fall 2020 > Updates > March 23, 2020—Spring info for students

Provost message to students with Spring course information

March 23, 2020 

Dear DePaul students,

I hope you are having a restful Spring break—especially after the disruption you have experienced in the last two w
eeks. Thank you for your patience as the university works through these unprecedented circumstances.


We have heard from many students who are feeling uncertain about what Spring will bring. The shift to remote delivery of courses certainly is an abrupt change from the usual way DePaul operates. Unfortunately, the global threat presented by COVID-19 made it necessary for the health and safety of everyone in our community. Many other universities around the country are making the same adjustments.

While this isn’t the year any of us expected, your degree progression can and should continue. Supported by the dedicated staff in DePaul’s Center for Teaching and Learning, your faculty are finding creative solutions to make sure you don’t miss a beat in your studies. We promise you: the education you receive in the Spring will still be a DePaul education.

DePaul has more than 10 years of experience in offering online courses to its students. We have been leaders in higher education in offering opportunities and encouraging our faculty to learn remote teaching techniques. Approximately 7,000 students take online courses each quarter. I know there will be cases where remote instruction is a far different experience than the classroom instruction to which students are accustomed. But those cases will be few and far between. I’m already hearing anecdotal evidence of students who are enthusiastic about how their faculty members plan to structure the remote learning experience.

As we move to remote learning, keep in mind that interactions with your class may happen in different ways. Some classes may continue to meet all together online at the same time (synchronous). Other classes may not “meet” in this way at all (asynchronous); instead all of your interactions will occur through discussion boards, videos and other online content. Many classes will now include a combination of synchronous and asynchronous components. Please note that all synchronous components of your class will take place during the original meeting pattern (day and time) posted in Campus Connect. Your instructor will let you know how your specific class will proceed. Resources on the Student Success website can point you to a variety of support services, including many tips to students for learning online and tutoring options.

This is a challenging time for everyone at DePaul. We know you are feeling a sense of loss and anxiety over what the future holds. Many, many people here are working hard to do their very best to continue serving you. You can rely on DePaul to be there for you. Academic and other university support services​ are available online now and will be available in the months ahead. Staff are thinking of ways to keep you engaged with the university and each other. Student Involvement created the Digital Engagement Network, known as DEN. The DEN, which you can find on DeHub​, will serve as a one-stop shop for students and staff to learn and share information regarding virtual opportunities. I’m eager to hear the stories of ways we continue to build community at DePaul even when we’re not together physically.

If you’re still searching for a Spring Quarter class, I encourage you to look at the many options that are available. In Campus Connect, you can filter under “Location: Online” to see courses that were traditionally online. Classes that have been recently moved online because of the COVID-19 health crisis can be found by filtering under “Location: Remote.”

I know this is a difficult financial time for many students. DePaul is doing what it can to help. The Student Activity Fee, Athletic Fee and CTA U-Pass fee have been waived for the Spring Quarter. Your CTA U-Pass will remain active throughout the Spring Quarter. For financial assistance with technology purchases, you can contact Financial Aid at dpcl@depaul.edu or 312-362-8610. Student workers whose work cannot be handled remotely will be considered for alternative duties and tasks across the university. These opportunities will be posted on the Campus Job Board website. Student workers will be paid the difference between actual hours worked and their regularly scheduled hours up to Friday, May 1, 2020, at which time the process will be re-evaluated.

DePaul will share more details with you about university operations and services later this week. Keep your eye on email—and stay safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Salma Ghanem
Interim Provost