WVU shifts undergraduate classes to online for remainder of fall semester


Students walk near the Lair on a warm late autumn day Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2020. (WVU Photo/Jennifer Shephard)

MORGANTOWN, WV – West Virginia University announced on Tuesday that due to the increased number of COVID-19 cases in the state and on the University’s campuses, all undergraduate classes will move online for the remainder of the Fall Semester.

The university stated this includes WVU’s Keyser and Beckley campuses in addition to the main Morgantown campus. All undergraduate instruction will move online Nov. 23 – 24.

University officials said some Health Sciences programs will be excluded, and faculty who teach graduate and professional-level courses may determine whether to teach in-person on Monday and Tuesday. Students in those programs should check with their instructors, officials said.

Officials say in addition, the deadline to withdraw from courses has been extended to December 4. University officials said that students considering this option should be aware that withdrawing from courses may negatively affect financial aid, scholarships and progression in their course of study. Students should contact their academic adviser if they have questions about the impact of withdrawing from a course, according to the release.

Officials said that next week, students will have access to learning labs to finish final projects if they are approved and supervised by the academic unit. Libraries will remain open but may have limited hours, according to the University.

Additionally, research labs will remain open and continue to follow research protocols.

The release stated that Dining and Residence Halls will remain open and operate on a normal schedule until the holiday break, as originally planned. WVU All Night will move to an all-online or virtual format this weekend and no in-person events are planned, according to the release.

“Now more than ever, we ask our students, faculty and staff to stay home and away from those outside of your immediate bubble as much as possible,” Dr. Carmen Burrell, medical director of WVU Medicine Student Health and Urgent Care, said. “If you have to be out or travel, follow the safety guidance that has been put in place to protect you and others, especially our more vulnerable residents.” 

  • Wear a mask (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently updated guidance to show that masks help protect the wearer, as well as for the people around those wearing them.) 
  • Practice physical distancing 
  • Avoid large gatherings and confined spaces with others 
  • Wash hands frequently or use hand sanitizer if soap is not available 
  • Stay home if feeling ill (Completing the daily wellness survey may help to monitor for symptoms.) 
  • Consider getting tested before travel  

WVU has also shared its own guidance for holiday gatherings and travel.

University officials said that students, faculty and staff are encouraged to pre-register for free voluntary COVID-19 testing on November 23 and 24 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the WVU Student Rec Center. Additional testing opportunities will also be available Nov. 23-24 for students, as well as faculty and staff.

In conjunction with WVU and the West Virginia National Guard, the Monongalia County Health Department will hold free COVID-19 testing Friday, Nov. 20, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the WVU Student Rec Center.  

The WVU COVID-19 testing dashboard is updated Monday through Friday by 2 p.m. with information regarding students and employees broken out by campus (MorgantownBeckley and Keyser). 

Officials said that begining Monday, November 30, and through the first of the year, WVU will update the dashboard on a weekly basis each Monday. The weekly updates will continue to reflect the daily results. 

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