Faculty Toolkit

Faculty FAQ

The University of South Florida has been guided in its COVID-19 mitigation efforts by data and science and by governmental directives. We are fortunate to have many eminent scholars among our faculty who bring us the latest evidence, and we carefully monitor guidance from the CDC and from the State of Florida to shape our strategies. Below are some of the frequently asked quesitons.

For information and the latest university guidance and mitigation protocols, please continue to visit usf.edu/returningtocampus, and thank you for doing your part to keep the USF community safe while providing the campus experience that our students deserve. 

What do I do when a student says they feel ill?

Faculty should tell students to stay home if they do not feel well and contact Student Health Services or their primary care provider for medical advice. Faculty are asked to report all possible exposures to assessCOVID@usf.edu.

What do I do if I feel ill?

If you are experiencing symptoms you should stay home and contact your primary care provider and notify your department chair. If you believe you may have been exposed, you should also report this through the Daily Symptom Checker or by emailing assessCOVID@usf.edu.

What happens when a report is submitted to assessCOVID@usf.edu?

This will prompt a response from USF clinical staff, who will help schedule a test, complete exposure assessment in conjunction with the Florida Department of Health, and provide guidance on any needed isolation or quarantine for all impacted individuals. Depending on the circumstances, you may be directed to shift to temporary remote instruction while they complete their exposure assessment.

Will I be contacted if I have been exposed to COVID-19?

As positive cases or exposures are reported, USF will conduct appropriate exposure assessment and coordinate contact tracing with the Florida Department of Health. Please note that if you are contacted, it is important that you respond quickly and follow all recommended guidance.

Can students be quarantined or isolated more than once in a semester?

Yes, if a student comes into contact with a COVID-19 positive individual and they are not vaccinated, it is possible that they may be required to quarantine each time this occurs.

Do I treat absences due to isolation and/or quarantine differently?

Students may experience medical conditions, psychological conditions, illnesses, or injuries that require them to be away from the classroom or workplace, or that affect their ability to perform optimally in class or on exams. Per USF policy, attendance is the responsibility of the student although faculty should encourage students to discuss their absences (COVID-19 related or otherwise) with their instructors at their earliest opportunity. If assistance is needed, students may contact the Dean of Students Office. Please note that it is in our collective best interest to do nothing that would discourage a student from reporting illness or exposure or from staying home with symptoms or as directed.

If I am notified that a student can’t come to class, how can I help the student not fall behind in my class?

If a student is able, they should continue their online courses as scheduled. For face-to-face instructors, depending on specific learning objectives and available technologies, faculty have options to engage impacted student(s) including live sessions, or curate/create digital content such as presentations, multimedia, readings, and discussion boards.  For more guidance and resources please visit the Faculty Toolkit.

If a student is unable to continue with their coursework, faculty should refer them to the Dean of Students Office.

What if I get sick and can’t teach class?

Each instructor should have a contingency plan for instructional backup on file with your department chair/director. If you are unable to continue your instructional assignment, notify your department chair/director.