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August 28, 2020 - Start and End Times for Class Sessions

Dear Instructors, Undergraduate and Graduate Officers, and Undergraduate and Graduate Administrators,

I am writing to you to make sure that the regulations are clear with regard to the start and end times for class meetings.  It has come to the attention of the Faculty Officers that there may be some confusion about the regulations that will apply this fall.

As mandated in Rules and Regulations of the Faculty Section 2.12, classes begin five minutes after and end five minutes before the scheduled hour or half-hour.

All remote class sessions will continue to follow this regulation.  There will be 10 minutes between remote class sessions.  Instructors are reminded to respect this regulation with remote classes to allow students brief breaks between consecutive class sessions.  In the spring, Faculty Governance received complaints from students reporting on instructors whose virtual classes were continuing right up to the hour or beyond.

Associate Provost Van Vliet has suggested that in-person class sessions will require extra time to allow for cleaning of in-person spaces and other requirements associated with the precautions due to Covid-19.  For this reason, she has previously informed departments that in-person classes should begin ten minutes after and end ten minutes before the scheduled hour or half-hour.

Students transitioning from a remote class session to an in-person class session, or from in-person to remote classes will thus have 15 minutes for that transition.  All instructors are asked to be understanding and accommodating of students who may require a few extra minutes to arrive at a class session.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns.

Rick

Rick Danheiser
A. C. Cope Professor and
Chair of the MIT Faculty