This page provides a quick overview specifically designed for School of Social Work instructors. Please review it carefully and adhere to the guidelines below. We ask that instructors do not implement their own policies and procedures since this might be confusing to students. 

Canceling classes: At this time the University is not suspending campus operations. Units may not systematically cancel all classes unless instructed to do so by the University.

  • Student Absences: If students or their parents choose to remove the student from class, please anticipate how to accommodate them while they are away. The University has reminded us to treat the student as if they were experiencing a health issue. No doctor’s note is needed.
  • Make-ups: Instructors may need to offer the opportunity for make-up work for more students than is typical. Making course materials and assignments available through Canvas also makes it easy to adjust the distribution of materials and assignments so that students can make up work.
  • Online options: All instructors should consider which parts of their course could be offered online using Canvas, Panopto and/or Zoom (the pro version is now free to current faculty, students and staff). The Center for Teaching and Learning has best practice information HERE. UW IT Connect has best practice information for preparing for when classes can’t meet HERE.  As a hybrid, instructors might also choose to still hold their course in person but with an online zoom option for students who may be ill or unable to attend.
  • Final Exams: If a final exam is not easily offered online, instructors should consider how to postpone it should the UW experience a shut-down.  Regardless, instructors should strongly consider creating an alternative make-up final exam for students who may need to take the exam after finals week.  Please be aware of the potential for cheating, as students who miss the exam may communicate with those who took it.
  • Grading: Please see the Registrar’s FAQ page for detailed grading information and options.  If a change needs to be made to the grading, consider these two options:
    • Assign an “X” grade for any student who is unable to complete assignments due to the impacts of COVID-19.  “X” literally means that an instructor is unable to assign a grade at the time grades were due.  This grade can be converted into a numeric grade by the instructor at any time, even if additional work is not completed.  Do NOT use an “I” or incomplete.
  • Back-up plans for instructors unable to teach:
    • The Dean’s Office recommends: Instructors, including faculty and TAs, who feel ill or are otherwise unable to teach should immediately inform the Program Director (Amelia Gavin for BASW, Maureen Marcenko for MSW, and Taryn Lindhorst for PhD) and our Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Tessa Evans-Campbell. All instructors experiencing coronavirus symptoms should contact their medical provider; and then the UW’s Environmental Health and Safety’s Employee Health Center at or 206-685-1026 for symptom monitoring and tracking.
    • Should a class or classes be cancelled due to inability to provide coverage for an absent instructor, we will inform all students via Canvas announcement that class is cancelled, including the assignment of “X” grades for the moment. 

Here is a link to the Office of the University Registrar, which includes detailed information on instructional impacts, including finals, coursework and grading during a possible suspension of operations: