Academics, advising and support services
Q: Do you suggest parents stay informed about their kids grades and academic process given the uniqueness of this year? Will parents be contacted if a student is struggling academically?
A: VCU's Early Notification Programs (https://studentsuccess.vcu.edu/early-notification/) are designed to notify students (and their academic advisors) that additional effort is needed to be successful in a course.
Parents are encouraged to check in with their student several times during the semester:
1st check-in (Aug. 17-24): Have they read their course syllabi, logged into Blackboard & Canvas, and do they understand and are they prepared to complete the course requirements?
2nd check-in (Sept. 15-30): Have they received any Progress Reports, and if so, have they made an appointment with their advisor, tutor or coach in Navigate?
3rd check-in (Oct. 15-30): What midterm grades have they received, and what steps should they take now to improve any grades prior to final exams starting Nov. 30?
Parents who wish to have direct access to view their student's educational records in eServices may ask their student to give them proxy access by following the instructions on the Records and Registration website (https://rar.vcu.edu/records/banner_proxy/).
Q: My student is new to VCU and does not have an advisor assigned yet. Who do we contact with questions?
A: All incoming freshman will receive their advisor assignments in Navigate (vcu.navigate.eab.com). Incoming transfer students are assigned an advisor in Navigate two business days after admissions processes your acceptance of the offer of admission. If you have questions about this process, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: What should a student do if their class schedule is not in their preferred modality? For example, if a student wants to attend all in-person classes, or prefers to take all online courses?
A: The Keep on Learning website (https://keeplearning.vcu.edu/spring/) has helpful information for students wishing to make adjustments to their fall schedules. Courses may not be offered in a student's preferred modality, so students may need to work with their advisors to identify alternative classes. Students can contact and make appointments with their advisor via Navigate (vcu.navigate.eab.com).
Q: What is the difference in dropping a class and withdrawing from a class? And, what are the implications?
A: Students who drop a course in the first week of class will receive a full refund for the tuition and fees for that course. If a student withdraws from the course after the drop deadline, prorated tuition refunds then apply depending on the date of withdrawal (https://accounting.vcu.edu/refunds/withdrawals/). A dropped course will not appear on a student's transcript, but a withdrawal will appear with a W next to the class on the transcript. Because withdrawing from classes may have academic progression and financial implications, students are strongly encouraged to contact their academic advisors for assistance. Often, students can successfully complete courses they are considering withdrawing from if they utilize academic support services such as tutoring, Supplemental Instruction or coaching.
Q: If I have a medical condition, can I stay home and take all of my classes online?
A: Students who need an all online schedule should review their course schedule with their academic advisor.
Q: Will tutoring sessions be in-person, online or both?
A: Tutoring will be provided in both modalities to ensure flexibility.
Q: Will preceptor sessions or SI sessions (extra help) occur for extra credit in person or at all this semester?
A: Supplemental Instruction will continue to be offered for many courses in fall 2020 and spring 2021. Extra credit for attending Supplemental Instruction is at the discretion of the instructor, and would be included in their course syllabus. Please see the Campus Learning website (https://clc.vcu.edu/forms/sischedule/) for more information and the most up-to-date course offerings and schedule.
Q: How can a student obtain accommodations while isolating or in quarantine because of a potential exposure to COVID-19?
A: Students who need to isolate due to illness or quarantine because of a potential exposure to COVID-19 are encouraged to contact their faculty as soon as possible to discuss alternative ways of completing course work while they are unable to participate fully in class. Possible arrangements might include attending class virtually or alternative due dates, amongst others. Students who need help making these arrangements should contact the Dean of Students by completing this online form.
For students with already approved accommodations, there may be some differences to how these are implemented depending upon the teaching modality of your course. This will be a collaborative process between you, your professors, and the Office of Student Accessibility and Educational Opportunity (Monroe Park Campus) and the Division for Academic Success (Health Sciences programs). Please contact SAEO at email@example.com or DAS at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: If a student has a 504 or may need a 504, who do they speak to?
A: The university recognizes that some students who previously did not need Section 504 Academic Accommodations, and who have a qualifying condition or disability, may need support or assistance during the return to campus process. A modified approach for the temporary and more permanent need for accommodation has been developed and implemented to provide students with full access to programs and activities related to their academic majors. Because every case is different, student requests are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Please share your need for an accommodation with the Student Accessibility and Education Office (https://saeo.vcu.edu/) after you have worked directly with your faculty member.
Q: Will I have access to studio spaces, tools, and technology? What if I am taking online classes?
A: Studios will be open — with physical distancing in place — for students to construct projects, create work, and explore different mediums. VCUarts will provide safety protocols for sharing tools and equipment. While some instruction may be delivered online, hands-on creation in the studio is still part of the experience.
Q: Will there be in-person studio art classes? How can I identify online courses?
A: The spring 2021 class schedule has been updated with information about instructional formats and resources that are available to help you navigate any changes. Some classes will be taught in-person with special accommodations for physical distancing; some will be online; and others will be in a hybrid format, meaning a blend of in-person and online. You can check your fall schedule on eServices and review the instructional mode, as well as any changes in meeting days and times. Incoming first-year students can also contact their academic advisor for more information.
Q: How will VCUarts maintain the same level of quality through online instruction?
A: Faculty members were consulted to determine how their expertise could best be shared through online instruction and with assignment prompts. Studios will be open and hands-on artwork creation is still part of the experience. Students enrolled in online courses will have access to studies, tools and equipment.
Q: How will shared equipment be sanitized?
A: Proper procedures are being determined for the sanitation of all shared equipment. VCUarts will provide safety protocols for sharing tools and equipment.
Q: Will there be any live theatre performances?
A: Theatre has planned a video-based production that will not be performed in front of a live audience. Theatre courses will be offered in a combination of in-person, online and hybrid formats.
Q: How will Cinema productions, that require actors and a crew, take place?
A: Cinema productions will follow physical distancing guidelines, in alignment with industry standards.