Fall 2020 Roadrunner Return

Do Your Part

At the heart of UTSA’s plans for the fall 2020 semester is a shared responsibility on the part of all Roadrunners to keep one another safe.

The Roadrunner Pact Public Health Task Force Report Self-Assessment Check

How the Fall Semester Will Work

Though there are many unknowns about the future, we are certain of this: by bringing our Roadrunner community together this fall—in mostly virtual formats—we are safely fulfilling our promise as an educational institution and an essential service for our students, our city and our state.

The health and wellbeing of students, faculty and staff are constantly at the forefront as we plan for the fall semester. As such, the plans below may change or be updated as needed to respond to the evolving COVID-19 situation, based on guidance from UT System and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Health and Shared Responsibility

The mandatory training is expected to be released later this summer and will thoroughly cover the Roadrunner Pact and Five Principles and all appropriate public health measures. It will also include information on self-screening, testing, reporting, accommodations for both students and employees, campus wellness resources, and steps you can take to mitigate the spread of the virus. See the Public Health Task Force report for more information on health and safety parameters guiding our fall semester planning.

Indoors, face coverings are required while in campus buildings. Face coverings are optional if alone in an enclosed space, such as a laboratory, studio, private office, or practice room. They are also optional for students while in their family unit common spaces within their residence hall. Outdoors, face coverings are required only when social distancing of six feet or more cannot be maintained. We will provide a face covering to every student, staff and faculty member prior to the fall semester. More information about face coverings on campus >>

UTSA's Public Health Task Force—comprised of scientists, public health experts and external health consultants—defined cleaning and disinfection protocols, including daily cleaning and disinfecting of all classrooms, community spaces and high-traffic areas. Additional resources will also be made available including hand sanitizer stations, disinfecting supplies, plastic barriers for high traffic areas and online training to help students, faculty and staff take personal safety measures in gathering spaces like classrooms.

Learning

Combining asynchronous and synchronous learning activities with creative experiential learning opportunities, our approach will ensure students have impactful, engaging academic experience this fall.

Select courses will take place face-to-face based on the need for specialized course material or facilities.

Notably, any UTSA student who chooses to take all their coursework online will have the ability to do so, as all in-person instruction will have the same content available and accessible online.

Classes will begin as scheduled on August 24, 2020. To better protect students and faculty during the holiday travel season, all instructional activities will be conducted online starting after Thanksgiving break and for the remainder of the semester. Final exams will be administered online.

The fall course schedule was finalized on July 31 and all courses in ASAP now reflect their instructional modality.

Campus Life

Common outdoor areas – like the Sombrilla – will be open with social distancing measures in place.

Many student activities will be moved to virtual formats this fall. Any in-person gatherings will have extensive safety measures in place, such as attendee limits and clear indicators for social distancing. New virtual programs being explored for this fall to promote a sense of belonging and Roadrunner identity.

Dining venues such as the Roadrunner Café and food courts will be open with limited seating capacities for social distancing. No self-service buffets will be offered, and take-away meals will be encouraged. New technology will be implemented to reduce contact where possible, including cashless/touchless pay options, mobile ordering and self-checkout.

Living

Halls will remain open through the entire semester for students who choose to live on campus. Residents will be grouped into “family units” and encouraged to remain together during their daily activities (e.g., dining, studying and other social activities), limiting close interactions with outside groups.

Students who signed contract addendums for UTSA-owned housing (Alvarez Hall, Chaparral Village and Laurel Village) in June 2020 may make changes without incurring cancellation fees until August 3. UTSA Housing will reach out to students with housing contracts to confirm their plans.

University Oaks and Chisholm Hall are owned and operated by Campus Living Villages (CLV), a private third-party company that operates under a ground lease with UTSA. As part of our contractual obligation with CLV, those properties are listed in the overall housing program at UTSA. However, we have underscored that University Oaks and Chisholm Hall are separate from the properties that UTSA owns and manages. Students who lease in University Oaks and Chisholm Hall are contracting with CLV, a private company, separate from UTSA, and are subject to the terms and obligations of its contract.

Read more about leasing options for Campus Living Villages >>

Working

Work modality options, including telecommuting, will be shared no later than July 28.
Flexible working conditions, including extended telework, will be considered for individuals at higher-risk or who live with or care for individuals at higher risk.
Classrooms, community spaces and high-traffic areas will be cleaned regularly. Additional resources will be available, including hand sanitizer stations, disinfecting supplies, plastic barriers for high-traffic areas and compliance training to help all Roadrunners take personal safety measures in gathering spaces.

Personal offices will be cleaned and sanitized on a periodic basis. Departments will receive additional supplies to clean and sanitize personal workspaces, such as phones, keyboards and computer mice, as needed.

Teaching

The majority of courses will be offered fully online with options for asynchronous, synchronous or a hybrid of the two online options. A limited number of courses will be approved to meet face-to-face based on strict criteria. 

All face-to-face courses must offer a parallel online component (hyflex) for students who are not able to attend in person and must be able to transition to a fully online format on short notice. 

Due to classroom space constraints, courses should only be offered in-person based on specific pedagogical and/or accreditation need, and must be approved by the college dean and registrar.

Examples of pedagogical need include necessarily hands-on work such as studio art, music and dance instruction, architecture and interior design studios, engineering senior design studios, student teaching and clinical observations in schools, and labs that require the use of specialized equipment.

Faculty will have access to their offices, where they may work and provide instruction. However, to the greatest extent possible, meetings and office hours should be offered virtually. 

Research

On-campus research activities and doctoral training opportunities resumed June 1 and will continue into the fall. Returning to campus is voluntary for graduate students. Principal investigators and lab managers are responsible for making accommodations as needed.

View the phased research recovery plan »
Guidelines for those working in laboraties have been put in place, including social distancing, safety and disinfection protocols, and compliance training.
Undergraduates supported by federally funded projects may participate in research activities in the fall semester. Others will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
Mask Distribution

Decision Timeline

Keep Your Distance Avoid crowds. Socialize virtually.
Do Your Part

More to Explore

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The Academic Experience

Our distinctive approaches to ensuring all students have a high quality, impactful academic experience this fall.

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The Roadrunner Pact

Do it for yourself.
Do it for others.
Do your part.

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The Five Principles

Wear Your Mask
Keep Your Distance
Wash Up
Check Yourself
Stay Home

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For Families

Resources and information for Roadrunner parents and families

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Tactical Teams

Learn more about the teams engaged in planning for the fall semester

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Public Health Task Force Report

Guiding our safe and healthy return to campus this fall

Learn More