Until Instruction Resumes

Today we begin a two-week instructional break – classroom instruction is on hold so that students can take semifinal exams, depart campus, and enjoy a few days off (perhaps to celebrate the US Thanksgiving holiday). When instruction resumes on Monday, November 30, students will access their courses remotely.

Many FWS instructors are concerned about what they can reasonably expect from students – and what students should expect from them – during the semifinal period. We cannot hold classes, nor can we require students to attend class-related activities. But we should consider how we can keep students engaged in the work of the course so that when instruction resumes in two weeks, they are poised to complete the semester with confidence.

Things you COULD do during the instructional break:

  • Assign low-stakes writing assignments such as outlines, drafts, annotated bibliographies, and/or proposals to help make incremental progress on final writing projects.
    • Offer to meet with students for individual or small group conferences.
    • Offer to provide an extra round of written feedback on drafts.
    • Encourage students to meet with tutors at the Cornell Writing Centers.
    • Facilitate peer response with classmates.
  • Assign guided reflections that enable students to take stock of their progress, name achievements, and set learning goals for the last weeks of the semester.
  • Assign asynchronous activities – watch and respond to films or instructional videos, and/or rewrite previous essays for different audiences or purposes.
  • Offer extra credit opportunities.
  • Require students to submit a few assignments using new online platforms or digital tools in case they or classmates are only able to engage in course activity asynchronously when instruction resumes.
  • Gather information from students about where they are going (time zones), and their anticipated work/study environments, internet quality, and technology access.
    • Consider adapting this FWS Student Survey from Spring 2020.
    • Use this information to help students establish learning/study/writing groups (perhaps grouped within time zones) so that when instruction resumes, students have peer support as they finish up writing projects and other final assignments.

Tracy Hamler Carrick


More news

View all news