Last Updated: Dec. 30, 2020
With de-densified classrooms, plexiglass barriers, staggered schedules and courses taught simultaneously online and in person, Tulane has implemented extensive public health measures and is employing the latest technology to promote the safety of our academic community and to mitigate risks associated with COVID-19. Coursework at Tulane is innovative, collaborative and transformative. We are committed to retaining these qualities, while requiring students to mask, socially distance and encouraging good hand hygiene practices upon entering and leaving classrooms.
All classrooms undergo regular cleaning and disinfection by professional contract cleaners. Campus Services, in consultation with an external certified industrial hygienist, epidemiologists and Tulane’s Office of Environmental Health and Safety, has developed detailed protocols for continued cleaning and disinfection in accordance with CDC and OSHA guidance. Sanitizing wipes are provided so faculty and students can wipe down workspaces and utilize hand sanitizer prior to the start of each class. We have scheduled all courses in classrooms that allow for required social distancing and have added 13 large temporary classrooms and other structures to make this possible.
Read below to learn more about our established public health protocols.
Spring 2021 Class Dates: Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021 – Monday, May 3, 2021*
Final Exams (in person): Thursday, May 6 – Tuesday, May 11, 2021
Students are scheduled to return the week before classes start to begin COVID-19 screening via our Arrival Center, which will begin operations on Jan. 8. There will be no Mardi Gras parades this year and we will have classes on Lundi Gras, Feb 15. There will be no spring break but there will additional days with no classes spread throughout the semester – Lagniappe Days.
Scheduled Lagniappe Days: Tuesday, Feb. 16 – Mardi Gras day; Wednesday, March 10; Monday, March 22; Thursday, April 8; and Friday, April 30.
For both the educational and social benefit of our students, we strongly encourage that all students arrive on campus at the scheduled time for their cohort. However, students for whom the arrival date poses challenges can contact Dean of Students Erica Woodley to discuss possible options.
*Graduate and professional schools may vary. The School of Medicine will maintain a separate academic calendar.
Our faculty have designed their classes to create meaningful educational experiences both inside and outside the classroom. New technology has been installed in our classrooms and faculty have engaged in classes through CELT, learning new methods of instruction and course design to support new modes of teaching and learning in response to the challenges presented by COVID-19.
To support social distancing requirements, and to increase flexibility, most in-person courses will be tech-enhanced – with both in-person and online components included. Technology enhancement gives our classes more flexibility and allows us to practice social distancing in the classroom and enables students to engage with their classes online, if needed. Most students will have significant in-person classroom time, discussions with fellow students and instructors and other in-person learning in their classes.
To provide more space in classrooms, some classes may have rotating in-person attendance. For example, half of a class may meet on a Tuesday (while half attends online) and then reverse the attendance on Thursday. Faculty will adapt their classes as appropriate for their disciplines.
Many new fully online classes have been added, but even with these additional online courses, 70% of all classes offered have a significant on-ground, in-person component. Most students will have substantial in-person classroom time, discussions with fellow students and instructors, and other in-person learning in their tech-enhanced classes.
If you would like to request to participate in spring 2021 remotely, please fill out this form. Not all classes will be offered online, but we will work with you to make decisions that are most appropriate for you and your individual situation. If you are enrolled in a program that is normally delivered online, you do not need to complete this form.
Small reductions have been made in class lengths and pass times (the time between classes) have been extended to facilitate physical distancing practices on campus. Please examine your schedule, since class times will be slightly adjusted to allow for this accommodation.
Each classroom on campus has been inspected to identify the maximum capacity allowed while maintaining social distancing requirements. To provide extra protection, plexiglass dividers have been added in many classroom and public spaces. In addition, large public spaces – such as auditoriums – are being repurposed as classroom space and 13 temporary structures are being added throughout campus to provide more space for classrooms.
Students and faculty are required to wear masks in all classroom buildings.
Classroom technology solutions have been added to all large spaces and medium/large general pool classrooms, to include three levels of classroom technology:
Physical computer labs that are not essential will remain closed. To enable physical distancing and reduce risk of exposure, labs will be virtual. The AppsAnywhere tool will be used to virtualize software as needed for student-owned computers. This tool allows almost any computer to run resource-heavy applications, as all of the processing occurs in Tulane’s data center.
The Provost must approve any plan to keep a computer lab open, and any such request must be accompanied by both a justification based on the needs of the academic program and a plan to maintain a very high level of social distancing, hygiene and public safety.
Custodians regularly clean classrooms, public spaces, offices and workspaces based on the established protocols. Sanitizing wipes will be provided so faculty and students can wipe down workspaces and utilize hand sanitizer prior to the start of each class. All stated university health strategies should be followed in the classroom. Hand sanitizer can be found in all buildings near entrances and main lobby areas.
The Tulane Libraries (Howard-Tilton Memorial, Matas Library, Special Collections, and The Latin American Library) are dedicated to ensuring library resources and services remain available to fulfill the needs for teaching, learning, and research.
Details can be found online at https://library.tulane.edu/reopen-faq.
For specific information on classroom and on-ground instruction for graduate schools, please connect with your individual school department head or advisor, or access individual school information in the School Information section below. Additional information such as remote learning requests and deadline extensions can be found here.
For information on graduate financial assistance, unemployment insurance, stipends and student emergency aid, please connect with your individual school department head or advisor. Graduates should also connect with the Graduate and Professional Student Association, which can provide further assistance.
International graduate and professional students should connect with the Office of International Students and Scholars, the designated office on campus that provides immigration advising and support services to Tulane's international community.
Laboratories and research-based spaces are unique to their associated purpose, project, number of participants and location. We will be providing, and continually updating, university guidelines for research practices. However, specific decisions on how laboratory-based research returns to full operation should be overseen by the appropriate dean, on a case-by-case basis, considering work practices, including social distancing, face coverings or respirator use and laboratory disinfection methods.
For more information about COVID-19 research and lab safety, please visit the Office of Research website at https://research.tulane.edu/covid.
Tulane-related non-essential travel is currently prohibited. Requests for exceptions can be submitted to the Provost’s office using this form: Petition for Exception to Travel Ban Due to COVID-19. This policy will be continually reviewed and revised as appropriate.