August 12, 2020 Volume 5 Issue 1

Welcome to Fall 2020!

Today’s Faculty Focus contains essential back-to-school information for Emory College faculty and staff as many of us return to campus and/or continue remote work for the start of an unprecedented semester. Please see the video message below from Dean Michael Elliott.

Michael Elliott - Faculty Video for Back to School

Return to Campus Guidelines and FAQ's

During Fall 2020, the College will need to balance maintaining and prioritizing the health and safety of our community while providing an optimal student experience. The Emory College administration has developed a set of guidelines and FAQ’s for in-person staffing and teaching that seek to maintain the health and safety of our staff, faculty, and students while providing essential services. Please see the full set of guidelines and FAQ’s on the Emory College Forward site.

Faculty/Staff Onboarding for Campus Access

Emory University has established a comprehensive clearance process for faculty and staff who plan to be on the Atlanta and Oxford campuses this fall. The five-step onboarding clearance process can be accessed through the Emory Forward website. COVID-19 testing is available but not required for any faculty teaching an in-person class and administrative department staff. Please complete the onboarding tasks if you anticipate that you will be on campus at any time this fall.

If you were previously approved to return to campus, you still need to complete two new onboarding items: the ‘Community Compact’ and a new ‘Health Questionnaire’. You will have until Aug. 19 to complete these two items to retain the cleared status. Please be sure to bring your Emory Card ID with you anytime you are on campus so that you are able to access buildings.

Reducing population density on campus is an essential condition to maintain community safety this fall. If you have been working remotely (and your responsibilities do not require you to be on campus), you should continue doing so. Unit leaders will determine essential responsibilities that require being on campus, and they will notify those staff members directly.

In-Person Teaching and In-Person Working Support

Extensive information about In-person teaching and In-person campus working, including classroom setups, available technology, and PPE requirements and supplies can be found on the Emory College Forward site as well as the CFDE’s website.

What to Expect

CFDE has created a detailed video which provides multiple examples of classroom setups and best practices for health and safety. Watch it below or on the CFDE website.

Video: Teaching In Person Safely

If you able to do so, please visit your assigned classroom space between August 13 – 18 to see your space and test the equipment. If you have technical issues, please contact Classroom Technologies at or 404-727-6853.

Online Teaching: Best Practices and Resources

As College faculty make final preparations for online courses, ECOTS provides the following advice and resources.

Connecting with Students

  • Communicate with your enrolled students during Week Zero (August 12-18). Make sure they know how to connect on the first day of class, what books or materials they will need, and when the Canvas course site will be published.
  • Publish your Canvas site (with a syllabus and Zoom link for synchronous sessions) by Monday, August 17.
  • Please be prepared to share your synchronous session Zoom link and syllabus with any students considering enrolling in your course during the Add/Drop/Swap period.

Student Preparation for Online Learning

All incoming students will have access to a Student Success module through PACE. You may also access this module and/or include it in your course by copying it from the ECAS Online Course Template in Canvas. We have developed an Emory College Netiquette document, which you may access, adapt, or include in your course.

Course Preparation Consultations

If you have questions as you prepare your course, or if you would like a syllabus or Canvas site review from the Emory College Online team, our ECOTS fellows are available for 1:1 consultations.

Additional Help/Support

  • Email for online teaching support.
  • Email with academic policy questions.
  • If you would like to have stand-by technical support during your first live Zoom session, please email your request to Please include the day/time of your course meeting and the Zoom link.
  • For technology support and needs (hardware, software), please email
  • For Canvas support, you may make an appointment with an Emory Canvas specialist.
  • Explore the Flexible Teaching Toolkit and support resources on the CFDE website.

Suggested Syllabus Language

The Classroom Logistics Committee has prepared suggested syllabus language to help faculty as they prepare to teach under Covid-19 conditions, whether they are teaching an online, in-person, or hybrid course. You may access the suggested syllabus language on the Remote Teaching website. Email with academic policy questions.

Undergraduate Education: Reminders and Deadlines

Add/Drop/Swap & Registration

Add/Drop/Swap opens for all students at 12 p.m. on Monday, August 17 and will close at 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, August 26. A few notes for this semester:

  • Waitlist activity ends on Tuesday, August 25. For the final day of Add/Drop, all courses will operate on an open/closed basis.
  • Students will be limited to only 19 credit hours of waitlist registrations.
  • Emory College students will be permitted to enroll in online courses offered by Oxford College of Emory University with some exceptions.

Orientation and Pre-Major Faculty Advising

New Student Orientation has already begun! Virtual sessions began on August 9 and will continue through August 18. A full schedule is available on the Orientation website.

Pre-Major Faculty Advising will occur on Monday, August 17. PACE Liaisons and PMFAs have received information about timing and expectations. On Friday, faculty will receive their student names/data sheets and links to the Zoom rooms in which they will login Monday.

Shari Obrentz and Tina McDowell will host virtual help hours if there are any questions or concerns at the following times:

Questions about Pre-Major Faculty Advising can be directed to Tina McDowell (

Change to Grading Basis Deadline

The Curriculum, Assessment, and Educational Policy Committee voted last spring to move the deadline for changing the grading basis of a course (graded or S/U). The new deadline now coincides with the partial withdrawal deadline for courses. The change will give an additional option to students who need relief for academic or personal challenges during the semester. For the fall 2020 semester, students will have until 4 p.m., October 9 to make a change in OPUS.

Emory Writing Center Online and Open Aug. 31

The Writing Center will be open this fall for online tutoring beginning August 31. Our full staff of 33 undergraduate tutors, four advanced graduate fellows, and one faculty consultant will be available for synchronous consultations Sunday through Friday with hours throughout the day and evening to accommodate students in a range of time zones.

Parking Permit Changes

New changes will be made to transportation and parking this fall to ensure that Emory students and employees are best able to manage their parking needs with respect to schedules, health, and safety.

Registration is currently open. All permits will be mailed to your home address.

New permits are needed to work with the updated parking system. The system is being updated to allow Parking Services to charge for only the amount of parking being used, as opposed to a monthly or semester-based fee structure. The new parking fee structure is based on usage. Fees will be based on daily use with monthly caps, which align to the previous fee structure for annual permit holders. Employees will be charged $6/day with a monthly cap of $56.

For more information, read the Permit Parking FAQ’s.

Childcare and Educational Resources

Options and resources for child care, homeschooling, tutoring and virtual programs can be found on the Emory Human Resources website.

Emory Forward

For the latest Emory University COVID-19 guidelines and information, visit the Emory Forward website.