Fall 2020 plan

The University of Miami plans to reopen classrooms and residence halls to students for the fall 2020 semester and resume on-campus, in-person instruction.

Teams are working diligently to reimagine and reengineer our spaces, our calendars, and our modes of instruction to safeguard health while allowing for an engaging on-campus experience.

Revised academic calendar

To maximize time on campus and to minimize the potential risk for virus transmission and spread, the University will follow a modified fall semester academic calendar. Fall classes will commence on campus on Monday, Aug. 17—one week earlier than originally planned—and on-campus instruction will conclude on Friday, Nov. 20—the Friday before Thanksgiving. There will be one additional day of online-only instruction on Monday, Nov. 23, and a reading day on Tuesday, Nov. 24. Final exams, which will be conducted exclusively online, will take place from Nov. 30 to Dec. 4.

This revised academic calendar will enable students to travel home for the Thanksgiving holiday and not return to campus again until the spring semester, thereby limiting the frequency of travel and potential for virus transmission and spread.

The fall academic calendar also observes the Labor Day holiday on Monday, Sept. 7, and an abbreviated fall break from Friday, Oct. 16 to Sunday, Oct. 18.

While most classes will occur in person, to allow for proper physical distancing and to meet the specific needs of faculty members whose preexisting health conditions may limit their on-campus activities, some classes may be offered in online or hybrid—a mix of online and in-person—formats. With this in mind, the University is using the experiences from the spring semester and new programs to further build expertise in online instruction to enhance any remote learning experience for students.

Accommodations will be made to ensure access to a high-quality online learning experience for students whose health conditions prevent them from attending class in person and for international students who are unable to be in South Florida due to travel restrictions or other circumstances.

Law and medical school academic calendars

The law and medical schools will determine their own approaches to learning and research and may follow a different academic calendar, which they will share directly with their respective communities.

On-campus housing

For students living in on-campus housing, move-in for first-year and transfer students will take place Aug. 9-11, with move-in for returning students occurring Aug. 13-16. All students will be assigned a designated move-in date and time. Additional information regarding the move-in process will be provided to all students who have reserved an on-campus living assignment.

Orientation

Orientation, or ’Cane Kickoff, for first-year and transfer students will begin on Aug. 11. Additional details will be shared directly with first-year and transfer students.

Commencement

The University intends to hold commencement ceremonies in December—both for December 2020 graduates as well as for May 2020 graduates who could not celebrate in person due to the pandemic. Commencement plans are under development and additional details will be shared in the coming weeks.

Family Weekend

Consistent with the decision to significantly reduce the number of events hosted on the University’s campuses, the Fall 2020 Family Weekend has been canceled.

Spring 2021 semester

The University is reviewing and may make modifications to the spring semester academic calendar so recommends delaying spring semester plans, including travel, until the calendar is finalized.

Our four pillars

At the University of Miami, we are fortunate to have a world-class health system in UHealth and the very best minds in public health guiding our plan for the Fall 2020 semester. Based on guidance from public health and government agencies, seven multi-disciplinary committees have been developing our plan, which is rooted in four pillars.

The four pillars include testing, tracing, and tracking; cleaning and disinfecting; protecting personal space; and vaccinating. Details regarding the four pillars can be found at coronavirus.miami.edu/our-four-pillars.