Coronavirus FAQs

FDU Policies & Procedures 

How is FDU developing policies to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic? 

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, FDU has planned in conjunction with recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Department of State and the State of New Jersey Department of Health, as well as Canadian federal and British Columbia health authorities. For an update in particular on the current governmental guidelines in New Jersey, please visit the official site of the State of New Jersey

What has the University done to plan for the 2020-21 academic year?

Three task forces were created by the University to focus on different aspects of planning for the 2020-21 academic year: a task force on academics, a task force on general operations and a task force on budgetary issues. The task forces planned for multiple contingencies to account for as many variables as possible in our preparations for the year.

In accordance with state guidelines, on July 17, 2020, FDU submitted to the New Jersey Office of the Secretary of Higher Education its comprehensive plan and policies for reopening. The plan can be read here. 

At the New Jersey campuses, the Fall 2020 semester started a week earlier than planned and ended on November 24. Most courses were delivered remotely. A limited number of in-person courses were offered including some labs, a few clinical courses and some others that required hands-on programming. 

The spring semester began on January 25, and all courses on the New Jersey campuses were taught remotely and delivered fully online for the first three weeks. We have planned for more in-person courses during the spring, and those courses scheduled to be in person began remotely and moved to in-person instruction the week of February 15.

Click on the campus-specific links below to learn more about the many resources and services FDU offers our community. 

Florham Campus

Metropolitan Campus

What are the University’s plans for the spring semester?

The spring semester started on January 25. As in the fall, the University started the semester with only remote/online instruction for the first three weeks on the New Jersey campuses. The University, though, planned more in-person courses than the fall. Those courses began remotely and were scheduled to move to in-person instruction the week of February 15. You can review here the list of courses scheduled to be offered on the Florham Campus and the Metropolitan Campus.  

A few changes were made to the spring calendar. The spring recess week is cancelled to minimize travel risks. Instead, several break days have been added (February 16, March 17, April 12). Students may again live on campus and the University will provide as many on-campus services and activities as possible. Students began moving into the residence halls by appointment in a phased-in process prior to the start of the semester. For move-in appointments and questions on housing, contact metrohousing@fdu.edu (Metropolitan Campus) or fduhousing@fdu.edu (Florham Campus).  

Even though more in-person courses are scheduled for the spring, will students have flexibility to study online if they wish?  

Yes. Many courses are fully remote for the spring term (as was the case in the fall). While we are offering more in-person courses in the spring than we did in the fall, most of those in-person courses are hybrid and allow students who want to study fully remotely for the entire semester to do so. There are some courses that require “hands-on” participation (such as labs, certain art courses etc.) that are being offered fully in person, but we will work to provide alternative options for students who are unable to participate in those courses in person. 

What do faculty and staff need to know about health and safety on campus?

The Office of Human Resources has compiled an extensive list of questions and answers for faculty and staff. For more information, contact the Office of Human Resources.

What if I have technical difficulties with any aspect of remote learning, remote teaching or current business operations?

If you’re experiencing technical problems, please contact UTAC (University Technical Assistance Center) at 973-443-8822 or visit https://it.fdu.edu/ for assistance. 

If you have any questions regarding your online class, please contact your professor to inquire about specific requirements. 

The IT team has provided guidance on a whole host of resources for faculty, staff and students as it relates to remote learning and business continuity (including things like how to forward phone calls) here: https://it.fdu.edu/remote-learning/ 

What will the tuition rates be for the 2020-21 academic year?

Recognizing the financial impact of the pandemic on many students and their families, the University froze the undergraduate tuition rate at the 2019-20 level, and there will be no tuition increase for the 2020-21 academic year and the 2021-22 academic year. In addition, the University simplified the structure of its graduate tuition rates and reduced the costs of many of its graduate programs. 

Will tuition and fees be reduced considering the fact that FDU is now delivering many courses online?

Regardless of the modality, the tuition and associated charges will remain the same. FDU is committed to delivering a high-value educational experience and providing an affordable education. We froze tuition at last year’s rate because we know students and their families are struggling in these difficult times. In addition, we have invested significant expenses in educational technology; faculty training; COVID-19 testing, training and screening; and various safety measures to support our students. We are not passing these expenses to our students in the form of any new fees or additional costs. The current fees remain as listed because these services continue to be available for the student population. 

How do we pay for tuition and previous balances?

The Office of Enrollment Services is not accepting checks or cash in person. Please pay your student billing statement online through WebAdvisor or for more information on how to pay your ebill statement, please visit Payment Information. We are sorry for this temporary inconvenience.

How were students supported by relief funds under the CARES Act?

Under the CARES Act, students were eligible for funding to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus. FDU students were notified through email on May 11 and May 21 how to apply and the University has dispersed nearly $3 million in emergency grants to students. FDU’s detailed reporting information on the CARES funds is on the website. 

Will study-abroad programs resume in the spring?

All study-abroad programs, including Wroxton College, have been suspended for the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters.

What are the plans for Commencement?  

Fairleigh Dickinson University’s longstanding tradition and current preference is to hold a University-wide ceremony for the Class of 2021 at a venue that can accommodate our large number of graduates (with social distancing measures in place as well as other precautionary measures like face coverings). If this is not permissible under state guidelines and/or if we cannot get approval for such a ceremony at a place like MetLife in time to properly plan such an event, we need to have another option for our graduates.   

We have decided that should we not be able to schedule a University-wide event at a large venue, we will instead plan to hold a series of smaller ceremonies to recognize our graduating class. The exact location, dates and times are yet to be finalized, but graduates should plan for an event shortly after finals conclude on May 14. We apologize for the uncertainty that remains and we appreciate your understanding and patience.   

What about the Class of 2020? 

FDU has not forgotten about the Class of 2020. While the graduates were bestowed their degrees in virtual exercises last May, we remain committed to providing an in-person ceremony (or ceremonies). This may take place soon after the Class of 2021 ceremony. We will update you as soon as possible. 

Will students receive a refund for the graduation fee if they choose not to participate in a commencement ceremony?

When students choose not to participate in commencement, they still must pay a graduation fee. The graduation fee covers expenses associated with a ceremony for all the graduates. These include event expenses and items like regalia and the commencement program. The fee also covers items like graduation medals and other expenses such as the processing and mailing of diplomas. 

What are the University’s plan for Summer 2021? 

Online registration for Summer 2021 begins on March 15. While many courses will be offered via remote instruction, we do plan for a number of in-person courses. You will be able to check the courses and modality (remote or in-person/hybrid) in Webadvisor shortly. 

Undergraduate students on our New Jersey campuses may take one three-credit course at regular tuition and any subsequent summer courses at 50 percent tuition. This will apply to any of the Summer 2021 sessions (see below for program exceptions). Graduate students in most programs (see below for exceptions) on our New Jersey campuses may take three credits at regular tuition and any subsequent summer credits will be reduced by $100/credit. 

Please note, the following programs are exempted from this policy: The five-year PsyD in School Psychology, the Doctor of Pharmacy, and the accelerated BSN (18 month and 24 month). Also FDU employees in the Ed.D Program. 

 

Student, Faculty and Staff Health 

What health and safety protocols has the University put into place?

FDU has implemented health protocols including requirements for wearing face coverings, physical distancing, safety training and daily health screenings. Testing procedures and contact tracing programs also are in place. More details on health and safety requirements are available online. 

What should students do if they feel sick? 

If you are a resident student who has possibly come in contact with an infected individual and/or you exhibit a fever, shortness of breath or a cough, please contact the appropriate health service as listed below. All other students should seek medical assistance through their primary care physician and notify campus health services of any positive COVID-19 diagnosis. 

  • Metropolitan Campus Department of Student Health Services – 201-692-2437. After hours, call Metropolitan Campus Public Safety – 201-692-2222. 
  • Florham Campus Department of Student Health Services – 973-443-8535. After hours, call Florham Public Safety – 973-443-8888. 
  • Vancouver Campus: Call your health-care provider or the provincial health line 8-1-1 to discuss any need for testing and follow up. FDU Vancouver student services can be reached at 604-648-8112. 
  • Wroxton College: The Wroxton College Reception Office, which is staffed 24/7, will coordinate with local medical services and can be reached at 011-44-1295-730551. 

See additional information for students at Coronavirus Information from HR. 

What will happen if a faculty or staff member experiences symptoms or tests positive? 
 
All employees who report having COVID-19 related symptoms or a positive test result will be directed to seek medical care from their healthcare provider. All employees are required to notify Rose D’Ambrosio, Vice President of Human Resources, if they have been diagnosed with COVID-19, have a positive test for the infection, or had “close contact” to someone diagnosed with COVID-19. For COVID-19, a close contact is defined as any individual who was within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from two days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, two days prior to positive specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated. 
 
Rose can be contacted via email at dambrosi@fdu.edu. or via phone at (201) 692-2706. If you have been off campus for more than 14 days prior to diagnosis or exposure, there is no requirement to alert the University. 
 
See additional information for faculty and staff at Coronavirus Information from HR
 
Campus Services and Resources

Will the libraries be available during the spring semester?

Yes, the libraries will available for online services only. Students should check the library’s website for detailed information including online and in-person hours as well as COVID-19 related policy changes click here.  

In-person hours: Monday – Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.;  Online Hours: Monday – Thursday 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Friday 8 a.m. – 5p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. – 6p.m. and Sunday 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.

What student support resources are available in the remote environment?

How can I connect with other students and/or my professor in the online environment?

Here are some tips and strategies:

  1. Go to your Blackboard course and use the email tool to email that classmate or all your classmates. You’ll find the email option in “Course Tools” in your Blackboard course. Some instructors may also put the email link right on the main menu. You can also:
    • Form a study group
    • Ask classmates to share notes if you miss a class
    • Organize an informal Zoom get-together with each other
    • Log into Zoom with your FDU account at fdu.zoom.us to host meetings of up to 45 minutes for up to 100 people
    • Arrange to get together in person — in a socially-distant safe way of course!
  2. Participate in your remote class with the camera ON. It is very easy to become an invisible square with a name in a Zoom class, so your faculty are looking forward to seeing your face and getting to know you in class.
  3. Speak up! We recommend speaking up more than you would in your in-person courses. This will help increase retention of material and engagement with faculty and other classmates.
  4. Office Hours: Learn about the drop-in virtual office hours your professor will hold and make an appearance even if just to introduce yourself. This will help make the virtual classroom experience more personal and maximize the experience!

What can I do to improve my online learning experience?

  • Review the syllabus ahead of time. There may be assignments in non-traditional modes that you must complete. Review any and all technology ahead of time to be sure you are prepared as the semester progresses.
  • Use headphones. Utilizing headphones will help block out ambient noise and allow you to focus on the material at hand.

What do I need to do before I come to campus?

  • Complete the COVID-19 training. Even if you are taking all your classes remotely or won’t be coming to campus this fall, it is important to complete the training so you are prepared for any moment you will come to campus, even if that isn’t until the spring.
  • Download the CampusClear app and complete the daily log every day you come to campus.

I am an international student. What resources are available to me if I am attending my classes remotely from my home country or elsewhere outside the United States?

  • If you are in a different time zone and the schedule of your class(es) is/are greatly impacted, notify your professor(s) immediately to discuss how best you can be successful in the course.
  • Other things to note if you are an international student joining from outside the U.S.:
    • You will still have access to all technology referenced in the forums unless there are imposed restrictions in your location, such as embargoed countries (e.g. Cuba, North Korea, Iran)
    • FDU’s VPN can help grant access to all web tools https://vpn.fdu.edu/
    • For assistance or additional technological concerns, contact FDU TAC 973-443-UTAC or FDUTAC@fdu.edu

Other Resources 

Where can I get more information on coronavirus?  

For up-to-date information, please check the following websites: 

United States 

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 

U.S. Department of State    

State of New Jersey Department of Health   

Canada 

Canada Public Health 

BC Centre For Disease Control   

Health Canada 

Vancouver Coastal Health 

United Kingdom 

United Kingdom Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England   

United Kingdom Foreign & Commonwealth Office