As you know, the University is currently planning for three possible 2020-21 academic year scenarios as we contend with the COVID-19 pandemic, each of which would enable us to safeguard the health of the community while maintaining Brown’s high standards of teaching and learning.
After we outlined these scenarios last month, we invited each of you to share input by completing a survey about the choices you would most likely make under each of the scenarios under consideration. The goal was to gather information to guide and refine Brown’s plans for the fall in conjunction with a wide variety of additional factors, data points and considerations — ranging from input from other stakeholders, to the evolution of the pandemic itself, to further developments in COVID-19 testing, tracing and treatment.
I am pleased to report that our response rate was high: 84% of returning students completed the survey, and 70% of incoming first-year students shared responses. And I write today to share key findings and noteworthy data points from the survey results, which are available here:
Student preferences will serve as one factor in the complex effort to develop solutions that protect the health and safety of students, faculty, staff and the extended community, while maximizing teaching, learning and research operations to the greatest extent possible. Our planning for the next academic year remains active and underway, and Brown expects to make a decision on fall semester operations by July 15.
I appreciate the participation of everyone who offered responses and look forward to the weeks ahead when the University reaches a decision on the 2020-21 academic year.
Richard M. Locke