This update is provided for archival purposes only.

Public Health guidance and University of Waterloo operations may have changed. For the most up-to-date information, please visit our COVID-19 frequently asked questions.

Environment update: Tips and information for planning the remainder of winter term

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

This message was originally sent to instructors in the Faculty of Environment by Brendon Larson, associate dean, undergraduate studies.

I’m writing to provide further information for you as you navigate these extraordinary circumstances in your courses (grad or undergrad).
Please see the attached message from David DeVidi and Jeff Casello that provides additional guidance on several items pertaining to your planning the rest of W2020 term.  This message addresses several topics that you’ve been asking about, especially related to AccessAbility and your technology needs in order to “Keep Teaching.” For convenience, I have also pasted the message below (after my signature), though note that web links have been lost there.  I am forwarding to faculty and advisors; I ask Chairs to forward to other key people who may not receive it (e.g., sessionals).
Here is some additional information the ADs and I have been compiling that you may find useful:

1. General information about the University’s plan and actions with regard to COVID-19 can be found at Communications from the Registrar’s Office (RO) to undergraduate students are archived at; you need to log in and go to “Mass email communications – undergraduate students,” where you will find all the COVID-19 emails.
2. Closing out the Winter term (with some reinforcing of points in the memo)
a. The WD deadline has been moved from March 20 to March 30. This is to give students a bit longer to assess their chances at success given the changes in courses that have been made this term.
b. International students have been advised to return home, which means that they may be working on your course in a different time zone. It is up to you if you want to accommodate students who ask to meet deadlines and submit assignments, including tests and exams, according to their waking hours. Information about how to alter the display of times in Learn to conform to the student’s time zone can be found here:
c. As indicated below, INC grades should be avoided unless they would normally be warranted – that is, a student experiences a setback and you and they complete the INC form and submit it to the RO.
d. Students may be unable to complete assignments because they have inadequate internet connections. If this happens for your student, consider a CR if you are offering an accommodation, and an INC grade (as above) if you are expecting the student to complete the course work later.
3. Student matters: For your awareness
a. Shortened co-op work terms count: “A student with 8-16 weeks and a minimum of 280 hours will earn their co-op credit (completed before the start of fall academic term) and a student with fewer than 8 weeks and fewer than 280 hours will be able to petition for credit” (March 16 memo to students).
b. Co-op work terms required may be reduced: “Across all programs, for any students whose work term(s) is/are impacted by COVID-19, the minimum number of work terms required by the program will be reduced by one, with a minimum of three work terms in undergraduate programs, and one in master’s degree programs” (March 16 memo to students).
c. Students, including international students, are asked to leave residence by noon on March 20. Students who need to continue in residence after March 20 may make arrangement to stay; essential services (such as food) will still be available for them.
d. Students on exchange have received messaging from Waterloo International, and are advised to return home; we will work with the host institution to secure what credit we can for their work abroad.
e. Students should be advised that investigations and decisions in petitions, grievances, and academic discipline cases may take longer than usual, but that our processes remain the same.
I hope you’re doing well as we continue to rapidly adapt to a new normal -- at least for a while. It is a challenging period, so please let me know if you have any questions or require any support.