Truman State University has moved all summer classes entirely online because of continued social distancing measures being implemented to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect student safety.
Janet Gooch, vice president for academic affairs and provost, announced the change in an email sent to the student body April 14. Gooch said the change is to ensure student safety, which remains the primary focus for Truman. Interim sessions for the rest of 2020 have also been converted to online.
“Like many colleges and universities across the country, the continued need for social distancing and the likelihood of continued disease spread in many of our communities has caused us to take this step,” Gooch stated in the email.
A majority of summer classes were already offered online prior to the change. If a course is unable to be switched to an online format then the class will be canceled. This includes some science classes, particularly those with labs.
Gooch said if a course will be canceled, the students enrolled will be contacted directly. Students will not be billed for the class in this scenario. Gooch also said if a course is being switched to an online format and the student would no longer like to take the class, they are still able to drop prior to the class starting.
Gooch said the switch to online classes is a significant change, but the University is trying to keep the impacts to a minimum.
“For many students this will have minimal impact. However, for some students in majors where courses are being canceled, there’s no question that the change will be felt,” Gooch said.
Gooch said online teaching in the summer will help refine online teaching for those who did it for the first time during the spring semester. She said faculty care about the quality of their online lessons, and it will only get better as more time is given to adjust to online learning.