In light of the pandemic, faculty have been given options with respect to the format of their fall classes. Initially, there were only three options: Face-to-Face, which means meeting in a classroom in which students wear masks and sit at least six feet apart; Online; and a hybrid of Face-to-Face and Online. Recently, others have been added. Below is a sampling.
Silent Meditation Option: Meets on the quad. Silent group meditation on “profound” things said by Nietzsche, Derrida, and Heidegger. The instructor further enlightens by saying more things that are incomprehensible, partly because said through three-layer face mask.
Nomadic Option: The instructor and the students walk around the quad, separately. The instructor displays aphorisms on an iPad when they come within ten feet of a student. Course grade is based on how well students live up to the aphorisms.
Hazmat Option: Meets in a classroom. Everyone wears a hazmat suit, equipped with both audio-visual equipment that connects to the classroom’s system and a clicker that not only facilitates attendance recording and quiz taking but also has an emergency “I have COVID-19, so please take me to the hospital” button.
ESP Option: Meets in the mental realm. Face masks optional. Required equipment: one bottle of mind sanitizer.
Facebook Rant Option: Self-explanatory. Extra-credit for meta-rants. Supplemental, concise Twitter rants are also encouraged.
Mail-in Option: Course content is presented to students in the form of proposed amendments to the State Constitution. Students either submit ballots by mail or take an oral exam. (Oral exams are administered at COVID-19 parties and, for now, are available only in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The first to test positive after completion gets five extra credit points.)
One-on-one Option: Each student attends a single one-on-one class session with the instructor. The two are separated by a plexiglass window and communicate through a pre-sterilized Princess-model telephone. (Studies indicate that students learn 13% more from a single one-on-one session with their instructor than they do from conventional one-on-many classes, except in the rare cases that they attend two or more one-on-many classes; in those rare cases, students who attend a single one-on-one session learn 19.5% more.)
Semaphore Option: Meets on the quad. Conducted entirely in semaphore. Prerequisite for non-dance majors: must watch TikTok video “Flags, Poses, and You!”
Megaphone Option: Instructor delivers lectures via megaphone while riding in an official University van through sorority row. Rooftop or balcony attendance required. Face masks optional. Wine coolers strongly encouraged.
Fatalist Option: Class meets in a regular classroom, the old-school way. We’re all going to get it anyway, right?? Top 5% of the class gets ventilator when needed. (While supplies last.)