Instruction to take place remotely after Thanksgiving break

All final exams and fall commencement will take place online

Students will participate in classes remotely after Thanksgiving break and the semester will end early on Dec. 4, University Provost Mark Searle announced in an email Friday afternoon. 

The semester will end sooner than initially planned. Beginning on Nov. 30, all classes will be conducted through Zoom until the new last day of session C classes on Dec. 4. Session B classes will end on Dec. 4 as originally scheduled.

Finals week, which was originally planned to be held from Dec. 7-12, "will not take place," Searle said, and instead should take place during the week of Nov. 30. 

Due to health circumstances caused by COVID-19 preventing most large in-person gatherings, fall commencement will take place virtually on Dec. 14, Searle said. 

READ MORE: Virtual commencement receives mixed reactions from students

Searle also said in the email the University will conduct classes the same way during the Spring 2021 semester as they have during the Fall 2020 semester, using multiple "learning environments to accommodate students' needs depending on location or circumstance as a result of COVID-19."

Classes will continue to be offered in person, through ASU Sync and with iCourses. For most courses offered on campus, students will be able to "simultaneously" attend either through ASU Sync or in-person to best fit their needs, Searle said.

"Although it is too early to be certain what local or national circumstances may look like for the spring semester, COVID-19 could be mitigated by a vaccine, the introduction of therapeutics, or other circumstances," Searle said. "Instructional modalities for the spring 2021 semester are also subject to change depending on COVID-19 circumstances."

Staff accommodation requests to teach remotely will continue into the spring semester, "but are subject to change as the COVID-19 situation evolves," Searle said. 

The University reported Thursday active positive cases of COVID-19 are continuing to decline in the ASU community. As of Sept. 16, there are 360 total active positive cases, and since Aug. 1, there have been a total of 1,580 known student cases and 30 known employee cases.

Searle also announced the introduction of an Innovation Quarter, which is a series of optional, non-credit learning opportunities and activities meant for students to network and build career skills.

"The ASU Innovation Quarter will consist of activities organized around the ASU Charter including events linked to ASU’s use-inspired research, building inclusive communities, enhancing the health of our communities, and professional development," Searle said. "Ideas under review include virtual museum tours, book clubs, boot camps for students preparing for advanced study in law and medicine, game nights, poetry series, community service projects and esports."

ASU students will be able to attend the series for free but must register to attend. 

Reach the reporters at and and follow @piperjhansen and @wmyskow on Twitter. 

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