Dear History Students,
The summer of 2020 is flying by, and in anticipation of the new term, we want to update you on what we’ve been doing and welcome you back for the fall. The faculty of the Department of History have spent a good deal of their time this summer reworking classes to make them better suit the COVID environment. You will see, if you look at the course schedule, that quite a few of our classes are being offered online or in a hybrid mode, though some of us have also opted to continue teaching face to face classes in a more traditional mode. We understand that you want options that meet your needs, and we know that you want every class you enroll in at KU to meet your high expectations for excellent and engaging instruction. Prior to COVID we already had a strong set of dynamic and thoughtfully designed online classes that meet our high academic standards, and we have been using the knowledge we have gained from years of online teaching experience, combined with new strategies we have learned over the past four months, to redesign our courses so that we can provide you with the instruction you need to reach your goals no matter where you are. We know that you are facing all sorts of challenges in your lives and we will do our best to adapt to your needs while preserving the academic rigor that our classes are known for and helping you to develop the skills and the knowledge that you seek.
KU’s health and safety team has told us that we should hold our office hours via video conferencing, and we have been instructed to keep our presence in Wescoe to a minimum this fall, so our hallway and lounge will not be the gathering points that we would like them to be. Common areas will be available for staff, students and faculty in all buildings, as well as in eight tents positioned around campus. But even though we may not all be physically in the same space, we are a community and it is especially important to us that you also feel like you are a part of our community. Please drop in to our online office hours, stay tuned for notices of upcoming virtual events, and if you have suggestions for additional ways to build community in these very odd times, please let us know by sending me an email message at firstname.lastname@example.org. Another good way to keep up with what’s going on in the department is to follow the department’s social media accounts: Twitter @KUHistoryDept / Facebook @HistoryatKU / Instagram kuhistorydept. And don’t forget to visit our department website, history.ku.edu, for more detailed course information and updates on what’s going on in the Department of History.
Luis Corteguera, Chair