Unique Classroom Environments

Classroom Preparation

UC Planning, Design and Construction has posted classroom signage and resources on its website, including maximum occupancy signs and recommended seating diagrams for typical classroom configurations. Maximum occupancy signs are posted outside classrooms of centrally scheduled spaces, and units can download the signs to post outside locally scheduled spaces. Maximum in-person attendance is not to exceed 50 persons regardless of the available space. Units can consult with PDC on seating solutions for local spaces by contacting Jamie Accurso, Director of Planning, at jamie.accurso@uc.edu.

Classroom Scheduling

All UC campuses must comply with all relevant state and CDC guidelines. Best practices include ensuring 6-foot physical distancing capacity in all directions. Planning, Design and Construction (PDC) is providing computational analysis and conceptual space diagrams as guidance for classroom capacity and increased physical spacing. The registrar and colleges should use these guides to assign classroom space to course sections based on the needs of the course, the number of students enrolled, available space and physical distancing requirements.

Units can consult with PDC on potential solutions for labs, spaces where equipment is difficult to move, or spaces with other unique needs, by contacting Jamie Accurso, Director of Planning, at jamie.accurso@uc.edu. Colleges must seek approval for space modifications by the dean and Vice Provost Chris Lewis (lewisct@uc.edu) in the Office of the Provost. Colleges may place a work control order for materials after obtaining approval.

All costs are the responsibility of the unit. It is acceptable to use uncommitted Information Technology and Instructional Equipment (ITIE) funds for these additional expenses for student health and safety.

Classroom Management

Maximum in-person attendance is not to exceed 50 persons. Courses meeting in-person where student enrollment exceeds 50 must make plans to ensure equal access for all students, either by staggering attendance or via other means. Classroom occupancy levels and diagrams exemplifying classroom types are available on the Planning, Design + Construction website. Students and faculty in classrooms should follow all safety measures outlined by the university, including facial coverings and maintaining 6 feet distance from others while in class.

What happens to a space if an on-campus member in a space contracts COVID-19?

UC’s Environmental Health and Safety will assess the space and determine a safe and effective course of action. Any cleaning and sanitization of that space would be based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Contact for UC Environmental Health and Safety is Director Jan Utrecht at

Please note that teaching spaces and other rooms may become unavailable for an extended period of time if an individual in the room subsequently tests positive for COVID-19. Faculty and staff, should prepare contingency plans in the event spaces become unavailable.

Wet labs

A team comprised of science faculty members from Arts & Sciences, UC Blue Ash, and UC Clermont worked to optimize instructional delivery regardless of modality. The degree of online instruction is based on the ability to achieve student learning outcomes in an online setting. Hybrid lab courses will limit in-person instruction to skill development that requires lab equipment.

Additional lab supplies (e.g., disposable gloves) may eliminate the need to clean common equipment in between student uses and increase class efficiencies. It is acceptable to use uncommitted Information Technology and Instructional Equipment (ITIE) funds for these additional lab expenses for student health and safety.

Medical & health related skills

Planning continues to evolve for medical- and health-related courses. Ideas include front-loading in-person skill development in the beginning of semester and breaking courses into HyFlex sections to deliver basic content online and application of clinical skills in-person or via simulation technology. All solutions will incorporate accrediting bodies’ recommendations. See more information in the Guide section titled Academic Health Center.

Music & theatre

Face-to-face instruction may be preferred for courses such as voice, wind instruments and theater. In some cases, plexiglass barriers or enhanced ventilation may be placed in practice rooms where students cannot wear facial coverings and social distancing is not effective (i.e., singing, playing instruments). Planning for these courses will continue. In the event of a surge, preferred modality may need to shift.

Studios / maker spaces

Solutions for studio courses include online instruction paired with the option for access to maker spaces, such as workshops, labs and technology centers by appointment. Studio spaces will be open to graduate students. All students will be required to follow health and safety protocols, such as hand hygiene, use of facial coverings and social distancing.

Physical equipment

Evaluation of courses that involve training on specific equipment is ongoing. Solutions for individual labs include physical classroom modifications or moving equipment to larger spaces to ensure appropriate physical distancing and hybrid and HyFlex approaches that incorporate video to assure students remain familiar with using equipment.

Course attendance, participation and make-up work

We commit to meeting the needs and the best interests of the students while encouraging health-promoting behaviors. Faculty Senate has drafted guidance on attendance, absence, and make-up work for students who are ill, caring for sick household members, or unable to attend class due to isolation and quarantine restrictions.  

Bearcat Promise Career Studio

The Bearcat Promise Career Studio offers both in-person and virtual career coaching. In-person coaching hours are posted online. For either in-person or virtual coaching services, students are encouraged to schedule an appointment in advance on Handshake . The Studio also welcomes drop-ins both in-person and virtually and will continue to offer online resources and virtual workshops on career-related topics including job search strategies, developing resume/CV and cover letters and interviewing strategies. For more information please visit Bearcat Promise Career Studio.

Remote Work Lab

The university has opened UC's Remote Work Lab, currently located on the 3rd floor of University Square, as a computer lab designed for students who work remotely for co-op companies. Find it in room 352 at University Square, 225 Calhoun Avenue, Cincinnati, 45219. This space is available to students as an alternative work location for those who need a professional space to work remotely from. The lab is supervised by a trained graduate assistant on site to support students. Use will be by appointment between the hours of 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday. Students will only be permitted to use desks that are spaced more than 6 feet apart. Students must wear a facial covering and will wipe down equipment, with provided supplies, prior to and after use.

Due to COVID-19, only 10 students at a time may use the space. Reservations are required. Reserve workspace in the Remote Work Lab and Learning Center.