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SVSU Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information and Resources

The health, safety, and security of our campus community is our primary concern. As we face the uncertainties of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we will be proactive to minimize the risks of transmission and to ensure instructional continuity. We are suspending face-to-face instruction for lecture and discussion classes and moving to online or remote instruction, effective Monday, March 16, 2020 through at least Friday, April 17, 2020. We are continuing to work with faculty and staff on laboratory, clinical and performance classes, and the university will provide additional guidance as it becomes available. We will re-evaluate the need for remote learning before April 15 and will provide further information at that time. 

Moving to an Online Format

There are a number of things to consider when shifting to the online format. Below is a short list of those. For more information on how to transition to the on-line format contact the Center for Academic Innovation at 

Changes may be warranted to your course syllabus to accommodate the new format. Consider addressing emergencies and expectations up front in your syllabus,  including unexpected disruptions.  Try to utilize tools that are available campus wide, and roll out new tools only when absolutely necessary; introducing a lot of new tools and approaches may leave even less energy and attention for learning. Make sure you familiarize yourself with the basic feature sets of the available tools. Be prepared to use alternative methods to prepare for unexpected technological issues. Establish online office hours.These can be held at the same time as your on-campus office hours and provide an alternative way for students to get help. The conference function in Canvas allows you to be available in real-time in a space your student can interaction with you on-line. You may also want to  review  you r canvas site using the student view option on the left-hand side of the canvas site. This will allow you to review your sites content as your students see it.

Review this quick reference guide for making the transition from teaching face-to-face to teaching online (from the SVSU Center for Academic Innovation).

Campus hotline is available at 989-964-2110. It will be staffed from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.


Frequently Asked Questions

Classes and Moving On-line

Student cannot be required to meet in-person in any capacity. They should not even be encouraged to meet in-person through extra credit or other means.


Remote/online teaching gives you the flexibility to rethink your classes. The course content can be delivered at any time, live sessions should be conducted only during the regularly scheduled class meeting times.   Instead of a 3-hour class, you can think of it as a weekly learning experience. You can cover the topics throughout the week Monday- Sunday. This weekly lesson could include lectures, readings, discussion, quizzes, exam, group work etc. These activities can be offered asynchronously, synchronously or a combination of both.

If you do choose to hold your online sessions during your regularly scheduled class period please be mindful of students evolving  responsibilities. In particular, please be aware that some students may have limited internet or computer access as they move to new locations. 

These are extremely unusual circumstances and we ask for faculty to do their best to provide alternative learning opportunities for students.  Examples include use of virtual labs, meeting with and viewing student work using video conferencing, and simple exchange of audio and video files. We encourage faculty to attend the workshops offered by the Center for Academic Innovation and IT to identify other means of meeting student needs. Many software companies are offering programs for free during this time of national crisis and we encourage you to contact colleagues in your area to learn about ways in which they are managing similar issues. 

Yes, you should remain available to students throughout the rest of the semester with regularly scheduled office hours.  These office hours can be held in person and online or only online. Please be sure to communicate your office hours and the best way to communicate with you to your students. 

Canvas conference tool can be used for online office hours. I have provided information on some additional ways of hosting office hours in the resource portal. The Center for Academic Innovation also is offering a Webinar on Monday, March 23rd at 2:pm discussing this topic.

SVSU is offering a variety of training opportunities for faculty who would like specific information about software and online curriculum development.  Please go to to review options and sign up for upcoming workshops.

The CAI Canvas site (only accessible to SVSU faculty) includes all the resources (Webinars, Resources for Transitioning to Online/Remote Teaching, Q & A/ Idea sharing forum). Also, you can contact the Center for Academic Innovation at with questions. 

The Center for Academic Innovation will continue to provide online consultation to help you transition to remote teaching. To schedule a consultation, please go the Canvas site (Center for Academic Innovation) and click on bookings (tab on the left side) to schedule a consultation. 

Yes, you will continue to have physical access to your office as usual. Classrooms on campus will be locked, but access can be scheduled ahead of time.  If you would like to have access to your classroom, please email at least 5 working days ahead of time. In your email, please provide the room number, date, and time that you would like access. Please remember that you cannot require students to meet with you and come on campus. 

Students have been told that they should continue to check with SVSU email on a regular basis to receive updates from the university as well as individual instructors. At a minimum, you should be emailing your students to provide updates regarding the changes to your course. We also encourage you to utilize the suite of communication tools that are available through Canvas (such as Announcements, Discussion Boards, Conferences, and more) to stay in touch with your students. Please be sure that you are providing them with information and updates on a regular basis. 

Yes, you can change your syllabus.  In fact, it is likely that most faculty will be making changes to their assignments, tests, and schedules in order to continue teaching during this challenging time.  Development of a modified syllabus can be a very effective way to communicate these changes to your students. 

While many classes will be able to transition quickly and easily online, there are other courses that will require more creativity when it comes to developing tools for the assessment of student learning. Possibilities include: 

  • Distributing electronic exams that will be printed and completed by students before being scanned or photographed and returned 
  • Asking students to submit video or audio recordings of performances or presentations 
  • Using scheduled and timed online exams during regularly scheduled class periods 
  • Having students do presentations explaining how to solve particular problems 

SVSU has purchased access to the Respondus Lockdown Browser to minimize cheating in online settings. You can find information on this service as well as best practices and tips to minimize cheating on exams in the site Transitioning to Online/Remote Teaching, which is also linked from the CAI Canvas site


The Office of Accessibility Resources and Accommodations will continue to operate and be open even while the university is not holding classes on campus. Approved accommodations will continue to be provided to students and questions should be directed to and (989) 964-7000. 

In a face to face class, attendance is counted if a student comes to class. In online classes, attendance can be determined by students’ participation in the Canvas course activities (participation in discussion forums, quizzes, live session, office hours, group work etc.)

IT will be communicating with you regarding using Respondus Lockdown Browser to minimize cheating in online settings.  You can find information on best practices and tips to minimize cheating on exams in the site Transitioning to Online/Remote Teaching, which is also linked from the CAI Canvas site

Faculty have the choice of choosing different tools based on their preference.

  • Pre-recorded lectures – Use narrated PowerPoints, Echo 360
  • Live Lectures – Use Conference tool within Canvas (recordings only stay for 14 days, although there is a workaround that is shared on the resource site)



The university has cancelled all large gatherings of 50 or more people through the end of the Winter semester. Additional events may also be canceled so be sure to monitor communications from event organizers for details.

On-Campus Facilities and Software

Students currently approved to use the ARA resources are able to at this time. 

The Center for Academic Achievement, the Writing Center, and the Math and Physics Resource Center will all be providing services online.


The Center for Academic Achievement: 

The Writing Center: 

The Math and Physics Resource Center: 

Flexibility will be important. Some software companies like Adobe and Echo are removing restrictions for educational use. The computer labs with specialized software will remain open with social distancing practices in place. The university is also working on a laptop check-out process and more information will be made available on this once it is available. 

or Faculty needing to place Fall 2020 and Winter 2021 course materials to the Bookstore, please consider using to place your book orders. FacultyEnlight book orders/course required materials will load onto Cardinal Direct and the SVSU Bookstore website 24-48 hours after you enter the information.

Health and Safety

Anyone concerned about an illness should be directed to their Physician or an Urgent Care Center for proper screening. 

All faculty, staff or students who returned from any prior or newly declared Level 3 country in the past 14 days must self-report prior to returning to campus. Faculty and staff should self-report to Human Resources; students should self-report to the Dean of Students Also, affected travelers must follow the CDC requirement to self-isolate for 14 days from the time they return from travel, monitor their health and practice social distancing. Social distancing means staying out of crowded places, avoiding group gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible. See further information. 

Support Contact Information

Student Affairs
(989) 964-4410
114 Curtiss Hall

Academic Affairs
Wickes Hall 338 

Center for Academic Innovation
(989) 964-2622
Zahnow 231

Information Technology Services
(989) 964-4225
Zahnow Library, 1st Floor

Human Resources
(989) 964-4108
Wickes Hall 373

Contact Us


Deborah Huntley, Ph.D.

Associate Provost

Joshua Ode, Ph.D.


Wickes Hall 338


8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.