Published December 1, 2021
When classes are called off due to inclement weather or unexpected emergencies, they are canceled for all students — whether in person or remote, UB officials say.
The university clarified its snow-day procedures with winter approaching and questions about UB pivoting to remote classes during bad weather, just as it had for the pandemic last year.
“If you are considering remote options to maintain academic continuity, please note that the cancellation of classes and events due to severe weather applies to remote as well as in-person classes,” Graham Hammill, vice provost for academic affairs, wrote in a recent memo to faculty.
UB cites the need to provide an equitable work environment for students. Severe weather could result in power outages and prevent students from joining class online. Students also may find themselves in surroundings that are less conducive to learning.
If classes are canceled, course content may be provided remotely, Hammill says, but it must be delivered asynchronously, such as a pre-recorded video. Ample time also must be given to students for review.
Faculty can find helpful strategies to promote the continuation of coursework on the newly launched Maintaining Instructional Continuity website.
During winter session, when the majority of classes are fully remote, courses offered synchronously online should move to asynchronous if classes are canceled, Hammill says. Winter session runs from Jan. 5-25.
And in cases where classes are not canceled, but students still feel it is unsafe to travel to campus due to the weather, they should notify their professors and arrange to make up all assignments. Students are not penalized if they can’t make it to class because of severe weather, according to UB policy.
A few other things to keep in mind as UB gears up for wintry weather:
That recommendation is made after considering the regional weather, forecast and road conditions; area travel bans and restrictions; capacity to clear campus roadways, parking lots and sidewalks; and the ability to provide bus service on and between campuses. Safety is the primary consideration.