Updated 6-2-2020

How is the University approaching the 2020-21 academic year?
In order to accommodate a slow and deliberate return to normal operations, the University is making changes to its academic calendar, to allow for a phased approach to bringing students and faculty back to the Danforth Campus. To accomplish this, we will have a staggered academic calendar, with individual schools beginning the fall and spring semesters on different dates. This will allow extra time for us to continue to gather information and prepare for the arrival of the majority of our students, while beginning the process of safely returning groups of students to campus.

When will the fall 2020 semester begin and end for Sam Fox School students?
The first day of classes for the Sam Fox School will be September 14, 2020. The last day of classes will be December 18. Final exams will take place remotely after January 1. These dates are the same for Arts & Sciences, the McKelvey School of Engineering, the Olin Business School, and University College.

When will the spring 2021 semester begin for Sam Fox School students?
The first day of classes for the spring semester is January 25, 2021.

How will instruction be delivered in fall 2020?
We haves every intention of teaching courses in the classroom this fall, and our planning is focused on returning to in-person instruction at the start of the new academic year. At the same time, we know the fall semester will not be business as usual. It will look and feel different, and we all are going to have to be flexible as we make any necessary modifications to allow for social distancing and other precautions that will be required to keep our students,faculty and staff safe. It’s possible that we will need to conduct some courses—particularly those traditionally held in large lecture halls—online, or through a hybrid model with some students in the classroom and others participating remotely. We still need to work through numerous details, and plans may change along the way depending on how the situation develops,but our ultimate goal is to bring students and faculty back into the classroom as much as possible.

For students who would prefer to continue to take classes online, we will offer remote options for most courses.

What’s the timeline to make final decisions for fall 2020?
We are eagerly looking forward to welcoming our students and their families back to campus for the start of the fall semester. In order to allow everyone time to plan for their return to St. Louis, we will provide additional details about our plans for fall no later than July 31, 2020. At this time, we will share specific information about how instruction will be delivered, the health and safety measures we all will follow upon our return, and additional information, including plans for student orientation, residential housing,dining and other campus services.

How will the University celebrate Commencement for the Class of 2020?
On May 13, 2020, Chancellor Andrew D. Martin announced that the University plans to welcome the graduating Class of 2020 back to campus for an in-person Commencement ceremony on May 30, 2021; details can be found in this story.

The Sam Fox School hosted a series of online events to celebrate the Class of 2020. To view recordings of these ceremonies, visit the Commencement page on our website.