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Getting Started

Universities are facing challenges with respect to the COVID-19 outbreak. We recognize that HSC students, faculty and staff may face potential effects on teaching/learning in classroom, clinical, laboratory and community settings.

This website, intended for faculty, provides tools and information links that can help instructors move their teaching to synchronous or asynchronous delivery online should it become prudent or necessary to do so based on guidance from the University of Oklahoma and OU Health Sciences Center leadership.

Guide to Academic Continuity

In the event that on-campus, face-to-face teaching is limited, instructors need to be prepared for alternative methods of course delivery.

  • Begin preparation in advance. Be clear and concise with students in advance of specific emergencies. Let students know ahead of time what the plan will be in the event that campus is closed. Consider alternative methods for course delivery and assessment.
  • Stay informed about the event. For COVID-19, stay informed with University Updates and FAQ. IT service updates are available from
  • Communicate early and often: Have a consistent communication strategy to avoid confusion. Tell your students where to locate course information online and provide detailed instructions for assignments, online meetings, and technologies. Use Brightspace email and Announcements if your materials are in Brightspace.
  • Create a more detailed communications plan: Once you have details about changes in the class, communicate them to students, along with how and when they can contact you (email, online office hours, etc.). Students will have questions, so let them know how and when they can expect to receive a reply from you.
  • Consider realistic goals for teaching from anywhere: As you think about continuing instruction online, consider what you think you can realistically accomplish. Do you think you can maintain your original syllabus and schedule? Do you hope students will keep up with the reading? Will you have some assignments to add structure and accountability? How will you keep them engaged with the course content?
  • Review your course schedule to determine priorities: Identify your priorities during the disruption — providing lectures, structuring new opportunities for discussion or group work, collecting assignments, etc. What activities are better rescheduled, and what can or must be done online? Give yourself flexibility in that schedule, just in case the situation takes longer to resolve than initially planned.
  • Review your syllabus for points that must change: Make sure that your syllabus and all important schedule dates are in Brightspace and update it with course changes as needed. Communicate if there have been changes to assignments, due dates, and/or course policies.
  • Reset expectations for students: You will have to reconsider some of your expectations for students, including participation, communication, and deadlines. As you think through those changes, keep in mind the impact this situation may have on students' ability to meet those expectations, including illness, lacking power or internet connections, or needing to care for family members. Be ready to handle requests for extensions or accommodations equitably.