As we move toward the summer fall semesters in 2021, UAB remains committed to providing the nation's safest campus environment for its students, faculty, and staff. We are fortunate to have top-tier infectious disease doctors, epidemiologists, virologists, and other scientists who are continuing to help our administration and system leadership guide our planning.

Our external environment is constantly changing as we make our way through this unprecedented pandemic—please check this site and your UAB email regularly, and look for upcoming town halls, for updates on these topics and on topics not covered here. We are united in our shared goals of ensuring the safety of our campus and surrounding communities.

Starting May 10, many members of the UAB community will no longer be required to complete a daily Healthcheck to access campus. However, in part to comply with a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) requirement, students, faculty and staff who are considered health care personnel or have a touchpoint in a clinical building or setting will be required to complete Healthcheck daily until further notice. Click here to learn more about if you should or should not fill out Healthcheck daily. 

Summer 2021 Semester Schedule

MAY

10

The summer semester will begin as scheduled for the Summer 14-week Session, Summer A Session, and May Semester, as has been published in the Academic Calendar.

JUN

7

The Summer 10-Week and Summer 2A MBA session begins.

JUN

28

The Summer B Session begins. 

AUG

6

Last day of classes

AUG

7

 

AUG

13

Final exams

AUG

13

 

AUG

14

Commencement

Fall 2021 Semester Schedule

AUG

23

The fall semester will begin as scheduled.

NOV

22

 

NOV

28

Fall/Thanksgiving break

DEC

3

Last day of classes

DEC

6

 

DEC

10

Final exams

DEC

10

 

DEC

11

Commencement

Teaching Formats

Teaching Formats: Summer and Fall 2021

The formats for teaching during the summer and fall semesters will be fully face-to-face (i.e., in-person) courses or fully online courses (i.e., asynchronous “Q” courses), in addition to some “blended” courses (i.e., online courses with periodic in-person requirements) that are traditionally available in some schools. Remote courses (e.g., primarily synchronous virtual classes) and hybrid courses (e.g., alternating attendance) will not be offered this summer or fall. We expect that “Q” courses will be specially designed using all available resources in the Division of eLearning and Professional Studies and the Center for Teaching and Learning so as to provide the quality educational experiences that students deserve.

The masking and social distancing requirements used so successfully for in-person and hybrid courses throughout the fall 2020 and spring 2021 semester will be continued for the summer and fall 2021 semesters with only the revision of changing distancing from 6-feet to 3-feet in accordance with CDC recommendations. Face-to-face classes for the summer and fall 2021 semesters will be assigned to classrooms with adequate capacity to accommodate proper distancing. We will continue to have safe study spaces for students to use in between classes to maintain social distancing.

Technology

Even with classes returning to in-person, the technology installed in classrooms and other educational spaces is still available to help instructors augment their students’ experience. Learn more. In addition, remote working tools such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom and virtual desktops are still valuable assets whether you are on campus or off.

Academic Technology Resources

Lecture capture technology remains available in most classrooms through Zoom and Kaltura Classroom. The technology components installed in the rooms vary depending on the location, size and capacity of the classroom. Click here to learn more. Learn how some plan to continue using classroom technology here.

Additional Resources

  • Virtual desktop technology — Is available for employees who need access to published apps or software on campus, without the need of a VPN or powerful computer. Learn more.
  • Retail Support — UAB IT’s TechConnect store is open on campus at Hill Student Center and online at uab.edu/techconnect.
  • Public WiFi — Express Lot 4 remains open for public WiFi. UAB IT is currently exploring additional lots that would be available to UAB students and faculty.

Faculty can register for training and other support on the UAB eLearning site as well as find additional resources on the UAB IT Remote Work toolkit.

Grading

Summer & Fall 2021 Semester Grading

The grading method for the summer and fall 2021 semesters will be the normal letter grade method. There will be no Pass/Fail option for summer and fall courses, unless a course was structured for such grading even in the absence of the pandemic. Instructors will be permitted to take attendance and count attendance toward grades as is normally the case. Faculty and students are responsible for keeping up to date with further information that UAB will provide regarding any additional COVID-19-related attendance policies.

Course Withdrawals and Incomplete Grades

The normal times for course withdrawals will be in effect for the summer and fall semesters. Students will no longer have until the end of the semester to withdraw from a course. The last day to drop a course without paying full tuition or fees, and the last day to withdraw from a course, will depend upon the length of the course. See the drop and withdrawal dates in the Academic Calendar.

As is always the case, students must request an Incomplete before the last day of classes, which varies for the sessions offered in the summer semester and fall semester. See the Academic Calendar. Students must communicate with their instructors before this date about the circumstances surrounding their inability to complete the missing assignment(s) and request an Incomplete. Otherwise a zero will be assigned for missing assignments and normal grade calculations will be made accordingly. The last date for completing the work for a grade of Incomplete in the summer 2021 semester will be the last day of the fall 2021 semester classes. Failure to complete the work by this deadline will trigger the normal process whereby an Incomplete automatically turns into an F.

IDEA Student Evaluations

Effective with student IDEA evaluations done during the summer 2021 semester, faculty will no longer have the option of choosing not to allow use these student evaluations in their own performance evaluations. Faculty who are concerned about the effects of the pandemic on their teaching evaluations by students should describe their concerns in a pandemic impact statement available here submitted to their chairs or other supervisors. Chairs have been provided guidance on how to consider these situations.

Disability Support Services

If students test positive during the course of the semester, Disability Support Services will continue to be available to help them navigate they coursework and ensure they are given enough time to recover so they do not have to take a medical drop. Please be flexible in offering time away from class when students report that they are ill and need time to make up work. Of course, just like with any other illness, instructors may ask for documentation.

Students who fall in one of the high-risk categories are required to register for COVID-19-related academic adjustments through Disability Support Services. Additionally, qualifying students will continue to be eligible for special COVID-19-related temporary adjustments. For in-person classes, either type of adjustment might require that you accommodate students who are not able to attend class in-person. Consider using alternatives to in-person teaching for these students that you have used in prior semesters, such as recorded lectures and online testing.

Click here for additional questions regarding Disability Support Services information.

Libraries

UAB Libraries' buildings are now open. See our current hours of operation. We have created a library guide for access to special resources during this time and Interlibrary Loan services are available to help obtain articles and/or book chapters. Members of the UAB community with a BlazerID may also submit a request form for circulating items (e.g. books in print format) to be pulled and delivered to them curbside at UAB Libraries' locations.

If you have any questions or need assistance, please feel free to reach out through chat, or email.

Please observe the following procedures to keep you safe in the libraries:

  • Entry to library buildings is by badge only. Please do not hold or prop doors open for anyone else.
  • All library users are required to wear a mask correctly (covering nose and mouth). If you don’t have one, a disposable mask will be provided. Study rooms and workstations in the libraries are public spaces and therefore require masks/face coverings.
  • Use curbside delivery or request materials to be delivered to the service desks for pick-up to limit traffic in the stacks.
  • Hand sanitizers and cleaning supplies are available throughout the building. Please wipe your work surfaces after use.
  • Please stay at least 3 feet from others at all times and don’t gather in groups.
  • Please don’t rearrange or move furniture, which is configured for your safety.
  • Be sure to pay attention to posted signage, including floor decals.

Safety precautions to create a safe environment for library users:

  • Disperse public seating and computer stations 3 feet apart.
  • Designate separate entrance and exit when possible (may not be feasible at Sterne due to construction) and designate flow of traffic in the common areas with floor markings and signs.
  • Assign separate stairwells for up & down traffic as needed.
  • Post signage for social distancing (including floor indicators and elevators). Reserve elevators for vulnerable employees and patrons who are not able to ascend/descend stairs.
  • Place touchless hand sanitizers in public spaces and entry points and post signage to sanitize surfaces that have been touched.
  • Install Plexiglas partitions at HUB (service) desks and office front desk to separate HUB staff from patrons and mark floors to indicate required distance among patrons. HUB desk surfaces will be cleaned after each transaction.
  • Sanitize frequently used items, such as shared printers, scanners, door handles, light switches, shared computers/monitors/keyboards/mouse, shared phones in office areas, water fountains (drinking spouts will be covered up, bottle-filling function will remain in use).
  • Equip all bathrooms with hands-free paper towels and soap.
  • We’ll have regular monitoring of the floors (staff on shifts walking through the floors on a regular basis) to assure that students don’t cluster in groups and wear masks. The staff on those shifts will also help with sanitizing frequently touched surfaces.
  • Based on materials safety guidelines, circulation and recirculation procedures for books and other materials may be changed. Returned materials will be quarantined for 72 hours before processing and reshelving. Equipment that may be sterilized with a sanitizing agent will be wiped and put back in circulation.

Travel

UAB continues to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic to prioritize health and safety while also ensuring delivery of quality education and experiences.

The UA System’s restriction on ALL non-essential international and domestic travel remains in place. Unless modified by the University of Alabama System Board of Trustees, all university-related non-essential travel is prohibited for all students, faculty, and staff. For essential travel, there are required forms to be completed. Please check this with UAB travel website on allowable travel and travel reimbursements, domestic or international.

All current travel restrictions for UAB-sponsored/affiliated travel for students, faculty and staff will remain through July. Starting Aug. 1, restrictions on domestic travel due to COVID-19 will be removed. International travel restrictions will remain in place for Summer and Fall 2021. As travel resumes, be strategic and responsible with your expenses. We are working on enhanced guidance to manage budgets in a manner that demonstrates accountability and good stewardship, while also maintaining our commitment to the professional development of our faculty and staff and advancing our reputation.

Employees with questions about international travel should contact the Office of Sponsored International Programs at 205-996-2735 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This office is available to provide guidance and assistance to our travelers, in addition to providing resources through our System travel provider, International SOS.

Access UAB Financial Affairs' guidance on allowable travel reimbursements related to the cancellations due to the coronavirus travel restrictions (international and domestic). While the System policy does not inhibit or restrict individuals traveling on personal business or affiliate programs (i.e., travel that is not university sponsored but related to academic or business pursuits — e.g., travel through another institution or program), the UA System strongly encourages our faculty and staff to consider this Updated Policy when making decisions to continue on or schedule travel to any of the impacted areas. Information on travel reimbursements due to UAB’s Coronavirus Travel Restrictions is available on the Financial Affairs website.

Click here for Frequently Asked Questions.