ECE Course Instruction / COVID-19 / FAQs

This post contains updates and FAQs specific to the ECE Department while face-to-face instruction is temporarily suspended through the end of the spring 2020 semester. Please follow the University’s official COVID-19 updates page for the most up-to-date information.

Last update of this blog post: April 6, 1 pm.

For general student FAQs, please visit the official COVID-19 page: they are addressing a wide range of questions such as, “What if I don’t have adequate technology to work remotely?” “What should I do about my student org meeting?” or “What if all of my things are in my residence hall room?”

ECE FAQS – to be updated as details become known.

1. Grades – What is the Pass/Fail option and should I use it?
Here are details and FAQS about the Pass/Fail course grading option for Spring 2020, which includes a low-pass option for CD and D grades.

When can I change my grade to the pass/fail option?
May 6
th 8am – May 12th 11:59 pm, after your letter grades have been recorded for the Spring 2020 semester.
How do I change my grade to pass/fail option? This procedure has not yet been determined – Stay tuned!

What are pass/fail grades?
SCV = A, AB, B, BC and C (satisfactory pass / covid-19 spring 2020 semester)
LCV = CD and D (low pass / covid-19 spring 2020 semester)
ECV = F (this is a failed course, does not affect the GPA)

SCV and LCV are passing grades and satisfy prerequisites.
Courses taken Spring 2020, with a grade of SCV or LCV can be applied to the degree.
Grades of SCV, LCV, and ECV are not included in the GPA calculation.

Course repeat rule addition: Students may repeat a course taken during Spring 2020, regardless of the grade earned or the number of times the course was taken.

2. Labs
The faculty and lab TAs are equally motivated to solve this! They’re actively working on solutions, which might include sending you data sets for simulations, live-streams of tests, or digital interactive tools–more info coming soon.


3. I’m in Senior Design or Enterprise–how will I do my capstone work?
The ECE Senior Design Lab is now closed. Projects are continuing, however, teams should be working with their advisors and sponsors to revise project scope such that the projects can be successfully completed with working remotely. When using the lab (if that’s an option), please observe social distancing procedures and disinfect the workspace when you’re done using the wipes located on the large blue toolbox. Other virus-related safety protocols are summarized at mtu.edu/covid-19/.

Some Useful Contact Info:
If any teams need help from the ECE Machine Shop please schedule an appointment with Mike Goldworthy (mpgoldsw@mtu.edu).

If any teams need to purchase equipment they must email a purchase requisition to Chuck Sannes (cesannes@mtu.edu).

Any questions regarding senior design can be directed to Tony Pinar (ajpinar@mtu.e).

4. Are my faculty or advisors still available?
Yes! Although campus is closed (with very few exceptions), the advisors and faculty are working remotely. If you’re unsure about where someone is, check their Canvas course page, any group emails for the course, or message them directly to find out.

5. What is happening with my courses between now and May 1?
You should have heard from your instructors by this time. Faculty are actively working to adapt homework, lectures, assignments, quizzes, exams, etc. in a variety of ways and you will hear from each instructor directly regarding the specific setup of their course(s).

Some courses may be recorded for viewing at an alternate time. Instructors will let you know how and when their course will be delivered. You are still responsible for completing your coursework. Deadlines and due dates: adhere to any plans, expectations, homework, and exams as you would on campus. Most importantly, stay alert to your Canvas alerts and emails, as you will be receiving updates from both the University and your instructors.

6. Learning Centers – ECE’s ITC Learning Center coaching hours will be held online. The ITC Learning Center will now be housed virtually via Zoom. Coaches will log in when they are on duty, both for quick “in and out” questions and  longer answers. You can chat via audio, video, or instant message.

To meet with a coach, please join this Zoom link during these posted hours. Coaches will create a Breakout Room for you if you have a longer longer questions. The usual hours are:
Monday—Thursday, Noon – 3 pm, 6 pm – 8 pm

More info about other learning center operations can be found here.

7. Can I return to campus?
As of March 11, 2020 (1:30 PM), the University urges all students to make the choice that is best for their own personal situation. However, high-risk populations are encouraged not to return to campus.

8. I need to drop a course, but I am not on campus. What should I do?
First year students: you must email your advisor to discuss the ramifications of dropping a course. We still want to make sure that you know how it might impact your schedule and future academic plans. From there, we will work with you and the Registrar’s office to get the course dropped.

All others: you are still encouraged, but not required, to email your instructor to discuss. To drop, Email registrar@mtu.edu to drop a course; include your M-number and the course name/crns you wish to drop.

Course Drop Deadlines have been extended. The Drop Deadline with a “W” grade is extended through Friday, April 24th, for full-semester courses. The Track B drop deadlines are: Friday, March 27th without a grade, and Friday April 24th with a “W” grade.

9. I still have questions about Fall 2020 registration. What do I do?
The new Registration Priority Schedule is found here. The Approval / Waiver fill-able form is now available, so you can communicate electronically with anyone that you may need to. Check out the e-meetings recorded for the spring advising series in our blog here! There are many answers, links, and tips in those presentations and slides. If you have more questions, contact Liz or Judy–we plan to remain active on email, phone, or other telecommute options for anyone who would like to reach us that way.

10. What about Commencement (May 2)?
A new plan is being created. The latest status of Commencement is listed in the Campus Events and Services Status Updates page.

11. I’m worried about my co-op, internship, or job prospects.
Check out the great work that Career Services is doing! In particular, you might be interested in these sessions:

How COVID-19 is affecting internships and employment this summer. 

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