Coronavirus Updates

School of Graduate Studies Information for Spring 2021

updated January 29, 2021

All students received an announcement from the Office of the Provost on January 27 announcing that the last day to drop a class for Spring 2021 has been moved to Wednesday, April 21 at 11:59 pm. This change was made to give students more time to decide if they need to drop a class. However, we strongly encourage you to work hard to avoid having to use this option. Dropping classes can affect both your time to degree and your eligibility for financial aid. Please consult with your program director and the Office of Student Financial Aid to make sure you understand the consequences of any decision to drop a class. Take advantage of the many resources available to you to help you complete your courses successfully, which you'll find on the University's Keep Learning page.  

The School of Graduate Studies is open and ready to answer your questions! Please see our Graduate School Staff Directory for contact information and a list of specific staff functions. We are here to do all that we can to insure that you have a successful and rewarding experience throughout your time at Appalachian. For the most up-to-date campus information, visit the links in the "For More Information" section at bottom. 


Graduate Courses

For many graduate students, even those enrolled in online programs, the graduate learning environment has been fundamentally changed by COVID-19. Faculty, staff, and administrators have worked hard to ensure the best course experience for students. This work includes intensive efforts to provide training in best practices for online course delivery, insuring that the necessary software and hardware is in place to support the educational environment, and adopting new classroom health and safety practices. Many courses for the Spring 2021 term will be delivered using the same accommodations as were made for Fall, including additional online components and precautions taken in classroom and laboratory settings where face-to-face engagement is required due to the nature of the curriculum. New and continuing graduate students are strongly encouraged to contact their graduate program director directly with any program-specific questions.


Graduate Student Resources and Events

Our Graduate Student Life team works throughout the year to provide social events and a variety of professional development opportunities for graduate students. For 2020-2021, the majority of these events are being held in online formats. To find more information about all of the Graduate Student Life resources, click here. For information about upcoming events, make sure to read the weekly Trails to Success newsletter sent out at the start of each week. In addition, the team has prepared an AsuLearn projects page that serves as a repository for Graduate Student Handbook resources that are accessible to all graduate students. All currently enrolled graduate students should have access to this page.

If you are not currently receiving our weekly Trails to Success newsletter, contact Stephanie Hickey and ask to be added to the distribution list. 

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Research/Scholarly Activity

Graduate students whose scholarly projects require them to be on campus or at off-campus research or practicum sites may be cleared to conduct these activities. Please check with your program director or advisor.  More detailed information about continuity of scholarly activities can be found on the Office of Research website. Although field work may be approved, a UNC System-mandated travel freeze remains in place. Research involving human subjects that must be conducted in person has been paused until further notice. Graduate students should work with the Office of Research Protections as needed to modify or update their research protocols. 


For More Information

Appalachian State University is providing regular updates about the status of campus operations, guidance from the UNC System Office and other agencies, and Appalachian's response to the evolving COVID-19 situation. Visit the Coronavirus Information page, which contains an active COVID case dashboard, more detailed information about course delivery, and details about the steps Appalachian State is taking to ensure health and safety on campus this Fall and beyond. 

Graduate students will find many helpful resources on the campus Wellness and Prevention Services website. In addition, general information about a range of campus services for students can be found on the Keep Learning website. 

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