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Coursework and Learning


We welcome all students joining us back on Grounds. Unlike in the past, however, we designed this Fall so that students can take courses from wherever they are. (The few exceptions are practicums and other courses that require a specific in-person experience for licensure.) While we are pleased that so many students returned to Grounds, we also know and appreciate that others needed to or chose to stay in their home communities. Regardless of where students are, our aim is to provide all of them an engaging and enriching academic experience. 

Academic Calendar

The Fall semester began for undergraduate programs on August 25th, 2020, with two weeks of virtual instruction, with a September 8 in-person start date.  There will be no Fall reading days, and in-person instruction will end by Thanksgiving. In an effort to minimize the risk of bringing the virus back to Charlottesville, students will not return until the new year. For more information visit the Academic Calendar and the updated exam schedule. 

Online Options

Because of social distancing requirements and their effect on our classroom capacity, large classes are all online. For classes and sections offered in-person, a remote option is offered for students who are not on Grounds. The deans and faculty in every school creatively approached online instruction while maximizing the number of in-person classroom experiences; decisions about which classes have an in-person option were made based on the format of each class, our classroom capacity in light of public health requirements, and the availability of faculty instructors to teach in-person.  See the instruction modes used at UVA. 

Expanded Options for Students

In addition to Fall and Spring courses, every undergraduate student will have the opportunity to take a January term (J-Term) course and a course in the first Summer session of 2021. While these courses normally require the payment of additional tuition, this year they are included with the regular tuition for Fall and Spring semesters. To enhance our offerings, we are designing new, interdisciplinary “Signature” courses for the January and Summer terms. These courses, tailored specifically for this year’s new and returning students, will be taught by professors from across the University and will explore some of today’s most relevant topics—from the science of pandemics, to racial justice, to analyzing the 2020 election. Most students will therefore have the option, depending on their degree program requirements, to spread out what would normally be taken in Fall and Spring over Fall, J-term, Spring, and Summer. Find out more about requirements and registration on the Registrar’s website. 


As a top research university, we are deeply committed to advancing knowledge. While we have had to adapt to new ways of conducting research over the last several months, this commitment has never been stronger. In the midst of a global pandemic, the University of Virginia has been mobilizing its resources and researchers to find a test and vaccine for COVID-19, treat patients, track the COVID-19 globally, and analyze the crisis through the lens of history, politics, economics, business, law and more.


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