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Arizona State University details plans to bring students back to campus for the fall

We look forward to the fall 2020 semester and have been hard at work making plans to create a safe and welcoming environment in which students can live and learn. Campus life will look different in many ways, and we will all need to make adjustments. With the cooperation and care of every member of the Sun Devil community, we’re confident we can all have a successful fall semester.

Below, find the latest information about how we intend to do that and where to go for updates if circumstances change between now and when classes begin on Aug. 20. 

These plans reflect current public health guidance and are subject to change before and after classes begin. ASU will continue to proactively communicate any changes that may affect campus life. 

One thing is certain, we will be ready for whatever may come. It’s what Sun Devils do — we face challenges with creativity and grit, leaning on adaptability and innovation. Our commitment to building student success is what unites the ASU community.


Mayo Clinic and ASU COVID-19 Initiative

ASU and Mayo Clinic are working together to launch the Mayo Clinic and ASU COVID-19 Initiative to provide timely health care information to students and employees on demand through the Mayo Clinic Health Information Library; to provide additional COVID-19 testing services to students and employees; and to collaborate on COVID-19 research projects and clinical trials. Read more

Class flexibility for students

ASU is set to resume on-campus, in-person classes on Aug. 20, 2020. Consistent with our efforts to always meet learners where they are, ASU will offer courses in a variety of learning environments to accommodate students’ needs depending on location or circumstance as a result of COVID-19.

 Offering three options for on-campus classes 

For the majority of classes, immersion (on-campus) students will have access to the following three learning environments:

  1. ASU immersion: On-campus, in-person, technology-enhanced learning environment.
  2. ASU Sync: Synchronous, technology-enhanced and fully interactive remote learning using live lectures via Zoom. This approach can be used simultaneously with in-person instruction to accommodate students in different circumstances and enable social distancing in classrooms or as stand-alone technology. It offers the benefits of face-to-face instruction in an interactive group learning environment.
  3. iCourses: Courses delivered entirely online with lectures available on demand.

Our goal is to provide a quality learning environment that adheres to public health and safety guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These three learning environments will give students the flexibility they need. Many classes will include a blend of in-person and ASU Sync experiences. Some labs, clinical experiences and fine arts courses that do not lend themselves to remote instruction will only be available through on-campus, in-person instruction. As of July 21, all classes with enrollment of 100+ students have either been moved to remote delivery only (this is reflected in a student’s class list in My ASU as “ASU Sync only”) or will have enrollment reduced by adding additional sections, to help further reduce density in classrooms.

Everyone will be required to wear a face cover while in ASU buildings. Face coverings will also be required in outdoor community spaces where social distancing isn’t possible. The university will also implement increased cleaning protocols including daily cleaning of classrooms with two additional cleanings of high-touch surfaces, providing cleaning and sanitizing supplies in all classrooms for students, and reducing attendance in classrooms by half on alternating days. Those not attending in person on assigned days will participate in class through ASU Sync.

Out-of-state and international students who wish to attend classes on campus but may not be able to arrive in time for the start of the semester will be given the opportunity to learn through ASU Sync for the first half of the semester, and if necessary, the full semester. Faculty will hold special office hours that accommodate different time zones.

 Students enrolled in academic programs through ASU Online 

We recognize that our new and currently enrolled online students are also facing life and family challenges due to the pandemic. ASU Online success coaches are ready to assist students to resolve issues that arise. Online students have the opportunity to receive academic, service and personal support remotely.

ASU Online offers more than 250 degrees and certificates with classes taught by the same faculty that teach on-campus classes.

Campus-immersion students who might be interested in learning more about these degree and certificate programs can reach out to their current academic adviser or center.

 Fall break 

To lessen travel risk, ASU is canceling fall break, which originally covered Oct. 12 and 13. Information on how this will affect Monday and Tuesday classes will be forthcoming from individual professors.

Related links: 
Fall 2020 webinar for new students (recording)
Fall 2020 webinar for returning students (recording)
Teaching and learning remotely
Academics and advising
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ

Mayo Clinic and ASU COVID-19 Initiative

ASU and Mayo Clinic are working together to launch the Mayo Clinic and ASU COVID-19 Initiative to provide timely health care information to students and employees on demand through the Mayo Clinic Health Information Library; to provide additional COVID-19 testing services to students and employees; and to collaborate on COVID-19 research projects and clinical trials.

This latest initiative is part of our longstanding relationship with Mayo Clinic. Although ASU and Mayo Clinic have been working jointly since 2002, the Mayo Clinic and Arizona State University Alliance for Health Care was formally launched in 2016 and is developing comprehensive improvements in the science of health care delivery and practice, all toward one goal: continually advancing patient care. Together, the recognized world leader in patient care, education and research, and the nation’s No. 1-ranked university for innovation are combining expertise from every corner of health care — doctors to bioengineers to business experts — for an adaptive approach to preparing the next generation of health care pioneers and practitioners.

 Safe Health Systems  

This fall ASU plans to launch the HealthCheck health status verification platform offered by Safe Health Systems, which will be made available for installation on student and employee smartphones.

ASU’s mobile app (available on both Google Play Store and the Apple App Store) will integrate the Safe Health Systems technology supporting self-reporting, test reporting and integration to electronic medical records. The ASU mobile app will also offer access to Mayo Clinic’s expanding guidance related to COVID-19.

The HealthCheck platform was designed by Los Angeles-based Safe Health Systems, a startup that advanced as part of the Mayo Clinic and ASU MedTech Accelerator. It is thought to be one of the largest single efforts to use integrated testing, technology, contact tracing and communication to help manage the spread of COVID-19.

Related links:
Mayo Clinic and ASU
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ

 

Preventive measures

All ASU students and employees will be pre-screened for information related to prior COVID-19 testing and travel. ASU will follow CDC guidance pertaining to isolation requirements for individuals traveling domestically or internationally. 

 COVID-19 testing available for all students and employees 

Testing will be available on all campuses for any student and employee who needs it. In particular, we encourage anyone who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 to request a test.

The university houses a CLIA-certified* testing lab at the Biodesign Institute and has been implementing testing for frontline health care workers, first responders and critical infrastructure employees since April. ASU will provide a saliva-based COVID-19 test and will prioritize testing for any student or employee who is exhibiting symptoms or may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19. Turnaround time for test results is 24-48 hours. ASU has staff available to support contact tracing as needed.

Students can make an appointment for a COVID-19 test. Employees can make an appointment for a COVID-19 test.

*The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulate all laboratory testing performed on humans in the U.S. through the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA). 

 Introducing proactive health monitoring 

Students and employees should monitor their temperature each day they’re on campus. If their temperature is 100.4 degrees or higher, they should stay home and seek health advice.

 Protocol for individuals who exhibit COVID-19 symptoms or test positive 

ASU will follow Maricopa County Public Health Department protocols related to isolation and treatment of individuals who exhibit COVID-19 symptoms or test positive. These guidelines are subject to change, visit maricopa.gov for current protocols.

For students who live on campus, isolation space will be available along with a complete suite of health care and food delivery services. While in isolation, students will be able to continue their classes via ASU Sync. 

 ‘Community of Care’ training and kits 

All on-campus ASU students and employees will be required to participate in a “Community of Care” training program designed to inform, educate and encourage healthy living and learning on campus and as a member of the ASU community. ASU will also have a community-wide communications campaign to remind students, employees and campus visitors of public health protocols to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

All on-campus students will receive a “Community of Care” kit containing face coverings, a thermometer, hand sanitizer and other items for use in maintaining their health and wellness on campus. The university will have these items available for restocking. Employees will receive similar kits.

 Requiring face coverings at ASU locations 

Everyone will be required to wear a face cover while in ASU buildings. Face coverings will also be required in outdoor community spaces where social distancing isn’t possible.

 Optimizing environments for social distancing 

Sneeze guards and Plexiglas barrier installations will be used in high-frequency visitor areas, touchless technology will be used where possible, and social distancing will be observed.

 Introducing medical-grade and repeated cleaning 

All ASU buildings — including residence halls and classrooms — will receive a thorough cleaning with medical-grade products followed by a fogging system cleanse prior to occupancy this fall. During the semester, all buildings will receive a thorough cleaning once per day, and high-touch surfaces will be cleaned twice daily.

 In-person health and telehealth services available to all students 

All on-campus students have access to ASU Health Services, a fully accredited health care provider operating in five locations across ASU campuses. Our more than 20 physicians and nurse practitioners are board-certified in emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, neurology, orthopedics, rheumatology and sports medicine. In addition, ASU Counseling Services offers confidential, personal counseling and crisis services for students experiencing emotional concerns, problems in adjusting and other factors that affect their ability to achieve their academic and personal goals. 

Through ASU telehealth services, students can receive medical consultations via phone, from anywhere.

ASU Online students can connect with 360 Life Services, a comprehensive and confidential support program that offers free, 24/7 counseling and crisis intervention in person or by phone. You can also chat at your convenience with topic specialists in legal, personal finance, child care, education and more.

 Welcoming visitors to ASU locations 

Visitors to any ASU location are expected to adhere to established, posted guidelines. This includes observing social distancing measures, wearing face coverings and answering health screening questions. 

 Engaging community partners in the health and well-being of students and employees 

ASU recognizes that in order to have a successful fall semester and fully promote a Live Well, Be Well community, we need the support of the entire Sun Devil Community which includes cities, businesses and other organizations in our surrounding areas. That’s why we’ve reached out to municipal leaders and businesses to ask for their commitment to important health practices including adhering to face covering requirements; providing visible signage regarding face covering policies; and implementing training to empower employees to appropriately escalate matters regarding the enforcement of face coverings. See the community partners who have committed to these efforts.

Related links:
ASU Health Services
ASU Counseling Services
360 Life Services (for ASU Online students)
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ

Campus life

ASU takes a holistic approach to the health and wellness of our students. We believe that student success involves much more than the grade earned in a class — it encompasses the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well-being of all of our students. ASU’s Live Well Community is dedicated to supporting students in their health and well-being during their university experience. COVID-19 is a unique challenge that ASU is prepared to help students manage.

 Enabling a full housing experience while introducing new safety precautions 

ASU has consulted with public health officials and national associations — and will continue to do so — on recommended housing configurations and protocols. The university will accommodate shared housing spaces and single-room requests. Visitors will not be permitted in residence halls; accommodations will be made during move-in periods. 

ASU will maintain vacant rooms in residence halls for isolation spaces, if needed. Common areas and outdoor community spaces may be subject to restrictions depending upon current, local health conditions; face coverings will be required; high-touch points will be cleaned and disinfected frequently; and sanitation stations will be available.

 Dining on campus 

ASU will maintain takeout dining with pre-packaged, disposable utensils for the fall semester. Touchless payments, physical distancing in lines, sneeze guards/Plexiglas barriers and extended hours will be implemented.

ASU will use Environmental Protection Agency-approved, medical-grade products for cleaning and will increase the frequency of cleaning of high-touch areas. Sanitizing stations will be installed throughout dining areas. All food service employees will receive a health symptom screening prior to every shift.

 Enhanced outdoor spaces 

Health experts say that being outside lowers the risk of coronavirus transmission, and students are encouraged to take advantage of ASU’s outdoor spaces.

We understand the importance of connection as part of the college experience. Additional outdoor spaces will be designated for students to dine and socialize, while still adhering to social distancing guidelines. 

 In-person and virtual fitness programs are available 

Sun Devil Fitness facilities and wellness programs will be open in accordance with CDC guidelines including capacity requirements, social distancing protocols, face coverings and cleaning requirements. Some fitness programs will also be available via ASU Sync. 

Start dates and availability of intramural sports and sports clubs will be determined on a case-by-case basis based on the current public health guidelines.

 Robust student services offered 

ASU transferred many services for students to a digital environment to ensure continuity of all aspects of the university experience during COVID-19. These services will continue to be available virtually and in-person as health guidance permits. Examples include:

 Campus shuttle services continue social distancing 

Campus shuttle services will operate on a normal schedule with social distancing guidelines and increased cleaning implemented.Each shuttle will limit capacity to 25 seats. Only window seats are available.

For the well-being of fellow riders, passengers are asked not to board if they feel ill. All passengers will be required to wear a face covering and should maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet, consistent with CDC guidelines. Visit cfo.asu.edu/shuttles and check out the ASU COVID-19 FAQ webpage for more information. Follow @asu2asuShuttles on Twitter for route updates.

Related links:
University Housing
Sun Devil Dining
Sun Devil Fitness and Live Well @ ASU
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ

Working at ASU

ASU has a large employee base that supports our core mission of teaching, learning and discovery. The university will implement protocols for employee areas — which often have student interaction — based on CDC guidelines, including: 

  • Appropriate spacing in seating areas, including cubicles, and maximum occupancy rules for gathering spaces such as conference rooms. 

  • Sneeze guards/Plexiglas barrier installations in high-frequency visitor areas.

  • Touchless technology where available.

  • Laboratory management plans that will receive a multi-step approval process.

  • Employees will be required to wear a face cover while in ASU buildings. Face coverings will also be required in outdoor community spaces where social distancing isn’t possible.

  • Employees will be asked to take their temperature on a daily basis and self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms.

 Staffing plans to accommodate social distancing measures 

The majority of employees have been working remotely since mid-March. Staffing plans for all ASU departments will accommodate social distancing measures and employee needs during COVID-19. Deans and vice presidents will be responsible for developing and implementing on-site staffing plans and employees will be phased back in over the summer.

University officials will explore reasonable accommodations for ASU employees who cannot return to work on campus due to special health or family circumstances related to COVID-19. All employees will be required to participate in training regarding a healthy living, learning and working environment.

 Limited travel 

University-sponsored international travel is prohibited at this time. University-sponsored domestic travel must receive approval from a dean or vice president, as well as an executive vice president. 

 COVID-19 testing for employees 

Testing will be available on all campuses for any employee who needs it. In particular, we encourage anyone who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 to request a test.

The university houses a CLIA-certified* testing lab at the Biodesign Institute and has been implementing testing for frontline health care workers, first responders and critical infrastructure employees since April. ASU will provide a saliva-based COVID-19 test and will prioritize testing for any student or employee who is exhibiting symptoms or may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19. Turnaround time for test results is 24-48 hours. ASU has staff available to support contact tracing as needed.

Employees who test positive will be expected to follow Maricopa County Public Health Department protocols related to isolation. These guidelines are subject to change, visit maricopa.gov for current protocols.

*The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulate all laboratory testing performed on humans in the U.S. through the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA). 

 Enhanced cleaning protocols 

All ASU buildings — including residence halls and classrooms — will receive a thorough cleaning with medical-grade products followed by a fogging system cleanse prior to occupancy this fall. During the semester, all buildings will receive a thorough cleaning once per day, and high-touch surfaces will be cleaned twice daily.

Additional details on location-specific cleaning protocols and traffic protocols can be found on the campus facilities plan

Related links:
ASU Employee Webinar
Return to campus guide
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ

Athletics and events on campus
 Hosting campus events to be determined at a later date 

We know athletics and other events are an integral part of the Sun Devil community. While plans will continue to develop, whether the university can host athletic and other events on campus will be determined at a later date and will be contingent on public health circumstances at the time. 

 Voluntary student-athlete workouts to begin 

In accordance with the NCAA, the Pac-12 Conference, public health officials and university guidance, Sun Devil Athletics is planning to allow student-athletes to return to voluntary workouts in our athletics facilities in a phased-in approach, beginning June 15, 2020. 

The Pac-12 Conference assembled a team of medical and infectious disease experts to develop best practices for member institutions to incorporate in the return to voluntary workouts. With this as a guiding principle, along with input from public and campus health officials/physicians, Sun Devil Athletics is establishing protocols that will be closely adhered to as we welcome student-athletes back to campus in phased groups over the next few months.  

Related links:
Sun Devil Athletics
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ

Live well, be well

Arizona State University is committed to creating a culture of care that promotes the values of “Live well, be well.”

Whether students are on campus or learning remotely, we are focused on their success and advancing their educational journey, providing support and making needed resources available. Our goal is to empower students to continue to take the steps necessary to build their future.

ASU is a tight-knit community with a shared sense of purpose. As members of the ASU community, our success is tied to one another. Accordingly, our mindset is to take whatever precautions related to COVID-19 we must to help protect not only ourselves, but those around us.

Working together, our actions will help keep our community healthier and stronger. Whether Sun Devils are connecting from a continent away or from the residence hall next door, we are all in this together.

Related links:
ASU Experience Center (help desk)
Teaching and learning remotely
Academics and advising
ASU Health Services
ASU Counseling Services
Mayo Clinic and ASU
University Housing
Sun Devil Dining
Sun Devil Fitness and Live Well @ ASU
Facilities guide
Return to campus guide
Sun Devil Athletics
Novel Coronavirus updates
Novel Coronavirus: FAQ