The Weill Cornell Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (WCGS) has launched a reopening plan to ensure the safety of our community during the COVID-19 pandemic. Developed by the Academic Planning Committee, chaired by the associate dean of program development, Anjali Rajadhvaksha, and comprised of faculty and student representatives, the recommendations are designed to mitigate the public health risks associated with graduate student activities. After exploring all aspects of curriculum for each of the WCGS programs, the committee concluded that the Fall 2020 semester of the Master of Science in Healthcare Policy and Research program will be entirely virtual. Below is a breakdown on what to expect from this semester:
No major rescheduling of coursework is planned. Timing will be adjusted to accommodate international students.
No changes will be made in course syllabi. Faculty and instructors will design their courses for remote teaching with best student learning as a priority. Faculty will maintain expected standard of quality.
Academic integrity will be comprehensively discussed during the early weeks of the online semester and expectations clearly defined for students.
• Continue using Zoom as WCGS’ online platform for the fall semester. This includes office hours, and committee meetings.
• WCGS is disseminating operational resources that provide guidance to faculty on course implementation. These include use of white board on smart devices, enhanced utilization of our Canvas site as a learning repository, lecture recordings, and routine online assessments.
• Online materials will be designed for ADA (Americans with Disabilities) compliance. WCM Educational Computing and Information Technology Services will provide assistance in generating these materials.
All students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to continue to use online platforms (e.g., Zoom) for extracurricular activities (e.g., student club activities, program-specific non-academic activities). This has been the norm since March 2020 and has been successful with program- and office-based “coffee hours,” “meet and greets,” and other virtual gatherings. While we recognize that these are not the same as in-person activities, the continuation of these established programs has been very useful in maintaining community engagement and to promote a sense of belonging.
For more detailed information about the WCGS reopening plan, please visit the WCGC website.