Dear members of the BC Law community:
As I mentioned in our June 5 campus reopening update, we have been looking closely at calendar options to allow us to end in-person fall semester instruction by Thanksgiving. Based upon some key considerations, we have decided to implement a staggered start at the Law School. Our second- and third-year students will begin classes on August 24. Our incoming first-year students will have virtual “live” orientation programming sessions August 26-28 (we will also record these to ensure that any transfer or LLM student who cannot attend the live sessions will have access). First-year students will start classes on August 31. While second- and third-year students will end classes by Thanksgiving break, our first-year students will have one week of remote classes after Thanksgiving. All December exams will be administered remotely. The exam schedule will change so that exams can be completed and graded earlier than the prior timeline. This will ensure our students will have grades in time to participate in January for OCI and other recruitment programs.
The Law School will also return to its normal grading policies. The move to mandatory Pass/Fail in the spring was in response to the sudden shift to remote instruction and the disruptive impact on many students.
I know that students will have questions about this adjustment to our fall calendar, including questions about travel complications, administrative support, and shuttle services. Although we don’t have all the answers yet, we have provided some responses in the FAQs below, and will continue to communicate updates as soon as we have them.
With the University holiday closure on July 3, our next update will be the week of July 6. If you have a question not covered by the FAQ document, please feel free to reach out to Academic and Student Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dean, Boston College Law School
BC Law Returning to Campus Fall 2020 FAQs
I am a returning student and will not be able to return to campus until 8/31 (e.g. my flights are already booked, my new lease doesn't start until 9/1, my internship extends through the end of August). What are my options?
We understand that some upper-level students will find it difficult to return to campus by August 24. During the first week, all classes (both in-person and online) will be recorded and made accessible via Canvas so that students can view the class sessions at a more convenient time. If you have an online or in-person class that you are not able to attend live, you will be able to access the class through one of our online platforms. Please inform your professor if you will be unable to attend class in order to preserve your space in the class, and complete any assignments you may have missed.
Will I lose my spot in a limited enrollment class if I cannot attend the first session(s)?
Please notify your professor and Academic & Student Services (email email@example.com) if you cannot attend the first session(s) of the limited enrollment class. The professor will let you know about remote participation and whether you need to make up any assignments for the class(es) you miss that first week.
Will BC reimburse me for the added hotel/travel expense I will incur to come back to campus early?
As all classes (both in-person and online) will be recorded and made accessible via Canvas, we will not reimburse for added hotel/travel expenses related to coming back to campus early.
I rely on the BC Shuttle to get to the Newton Campus. What will the bus schedule be that week?
We understand that many of our students rely on the shuttle and are working with BC Transportation and Parking to share a schedule with you for that week. We will keep you updated.
Will there be any changes in ordering parking permits?
Parking permit orders will begin in mid-July through the BC’s Agora Portal. To avoid overcrowding at Student Services on the Chestnut Hill Campus, BC Transportation and Parking is considering setting up a permit pickup table on Newton Campus in the Stuart parking lot as students return to campus. We will communicate more details as they become available.
Will administrative services at the Law School and University be available the week of August 24?
Yes, administrative services will be available. At the Law School, in order to de-densify our shared buildings, the departments will continue to offer their services to students remotely, as was done in the second half of the spring semester.
Will the bookstore be open the week of August 24?
The Law School bookstore will be open the week of August 24. The bookstore hours will be: Monday/Tuesday 9-6pm; Wednesday/Thursday 9-5pm; and Friday 9-4pm. They are also looking into whether they will be open the weekend of August 29-30 and will update us. As social distancing requirements to comply with MA state guidelines will be in place, the bookstore will be limiting the number of customers in the store to six people at a time and waiting lines will be indicated. Students are encouraged to order online whenever possible. You can shop online for your books at www.bclawshop.com. By having them shipped to you, you can avoid lines or you could select in store pickup as an option (there will be a separate line for pickup orders).
Will the Law Library be open the week of August 24?
Yes, the Library will be open. We are working on the schedule and will get you more information about hours and services for that week.
Will there be dining on the Newton Campus the week of August 24?
Stuart Dining will be open from 8-2 pm daily the week of August 24. Dining will offer two lines with multiple food options, the same options in each line, and service by the dining staff rather than self-service. In between these lines will be an area with an increased amount of grab-and-go options (formerly the salad bar). Dining will also have refrigerators for single serve bottle beverages.
As of August 31, Stuart Dining will open a third serving line in the Yellow Room and expects that it will be open for lunch and dinner Sunday through Thursday. Legal Grounds will not be open initially as there is not enough square footage to meet state guidelines. However, GET mobile ordering will be available and will feature the Starbucks specialty line and a few popular menu items from Legal Grounds (pickup in the Yellow Room).
A portion of the Yellow Room and Stuart dining area will be used to provide adequate space for queuing patrons into the three serving lines. Masks will be required other than sitting at a table to eat. We encourage you to review the details of BC Dining’s health and safety protocols described in the Preventative Measure Link.