Parents FAQs

When will the semester start and end?

UNA’s academic calendar will remain as originally scheduled:

  • Classes will start August 19; the semester will conclude December 11.
  • The final two weeks of the semester after Thanksgiving break will be conducted remotely:
    • Tuesday, November 24: Last day for in-person instruction
    • Wednesday, November 25 - Friday, November 27: Thanksgiving Break
    • Monday, November 30: course instruction and assessment shift to remote delivery for the remainder of the Fall 2020 semester.  

What about spring semester?

  • Spring semester will begin face to face classes January 6 as planned right now.

Are scheduled holiday breaks altered from the academic calendar?

Will accommodations be available remotely for my student once the University goes to remote instruction after Thanksgiving?

  • Yes:  Disability Support Services will be available to ensure that students with accommodations are able to engage with their courses and related assignments. The students will need to register with DSS to receive accommodations.

What if my student prefers to delay a semester or a year due to COVID concerns?

  • UNA has gone to great lengths to ensure the health and safety of students. However, students have options. Students may take online classes at UNA their first semester or first academic year, then attend face to face classes in Spring or Fall 2021.

Are masks/face coverings required?

Yes, appropriate cloth face coverings should cover both the nose and mouth. CDC guidelines about cloth face coverings can be found here. Cloth face coverings are required:

  • At all times when in public areas or shared spaces within buildings, including hallways and classrooms.
  • Outdoors, when near others, and when physical distancing of at least six feet cannotbe maintained (e .g . course transition times);
  • In classrooms, students are required to wear cloth face coverings or masks, reasonable accommodations will be made for those who are unable to meet this requirement;
  • In classrooms, faculty may teach their courses without a face covering only if they are able to maintain six-feet physical distancing away from the students; otherwise, a cloth face covering or mask is required to be used.  Faculty should maximize distance between themselves and students while teaching, and all coughs and sneezes must be covered with a cloth. Faculty could also consider using a Plexiglas barrier or shield; and
  • By employees when physical distancing of at least six feet cannot be maintained. Reasonable accommodations will be made for those who are unable to meet this requirement.

There are situations when a cloth face covering is not required or does not have to be worn because of the type of activity or factors related to the environment. Examples include:

  • While eating or drinking;
  • While in your in your room/apartment with assigned roommates;
  • Performing physical exertion, such as manual labor, running, and athletics training;
  • Outdoors with more than six feet continuous separation between all people; and
  • Other physical limitations or conditions that preclude an individual from wearing a cloth face covering.

Will my student be required to purchase their own face covering?

  • Yes. However, UNA will provide cloth face coverings to students, if needed.

When should my student complete the Self-Screening Assessment?

  • Every day before your arrival to campus.
  • Students are not required to report the results of the assessment to University Health Services unless the answer to any of the questions is yes.

Will my student be required to complete a COVID-19 test prior to returning to campus for the fall?

  • All UNA students are required to be tested. Online students who are living in university-owned housing will be required to complete the test. Students who are taking online classes and not coming onto UNA’s campus property this fall will not be required to take the COVID test.

  • UNA students will receive a free coronavirus test through the GuideSafe™ Entry Testing program, supported by CARES Act funding through the State of Alabama. The test involves a nasal swab just inside the nostril, which is easy to self-administer and less invasive than the nasopharyngeal swab.  For more information about testing, click here.

What if a student tests positive and lives in the residence halls?

  • All residents in the halls must wear cloth face coverings in hallways and public areas unless in they are in their residence hall room.
  • Should a student test positive, the student should return home. Accommodations will be made to continue academic studies remotely.
  • Should a student not have alternative housing, UNA has designated places for self-isolation in other University facilities away from general residential population.
  • University Health Services will notify employees and students who have had contact with that person to do symptom checks and make recommendations.

What if my student does not have a vehicle and needs to be taken to get a COVID-19 test?

  • UNA has a designated van to provide transportation.
  • University Health Services will initiate the protocol to get that transportation for the student.
  • Students will need to take a photo ID, insurance card, money or debit card.

How long will I need to isolate from campus if I test positive for COVID or if I am a close contact of a person that tested positive?

You will need to call University Health Services for guidance on dates and for contact tracing purposes. Health Services follows guidance from ADPH and CDC and each positive case is handled on a case by case basis with Health Services’ staff. You may call 256-765-4328 during normal business hours, or 256-765-5000 8am-8pm seven days a week. See CDC guidance for general information on self-isolation.

When does Housing move-in begin?

When should my student start the self-screening process?

  • Residents should start the self-screening 14 days prior to arrival. The symptom self-check form is sent daily to students via their UNA email.

How many people can help move-in?

  • Each resident may bring 3 guests to assist with move-in. We ask that you avoid coming if you are in a high-risk category, have a temperature of 100.4 or above, and/or have been exposed to COVID-19.

Where do I find the information about move-in?

Will students get money back for housing or meal plans if they choose to stay at home or otherwise remain off campus when the University moves to remote instructional delivery after Thanksgiving?

  • No, Housing prices are set by semester rather than number of days.  Meals are sold in block quantities, so they are not tied to the number of days, but rather the number of meals purchased.  Additionally, Housing and Dining services are opening earlier than in previous years and will remain open after Thanksgiving, through the end of the semester. The services provided are not changing, and students will have ample time to have used all of their meals. 

If there is a COVID-19 resurge and University residence halls and Dining services close before the semester ends, will students get refunded for the time they aren’t able to live on campus? 

  • The loss of use to residence halls and meal plans will be prorated and issued to the student in the form of a scholarship for the Spring 2021 semester.  Any remaining dining dollars will be carried over to the Spring 2021 semester.

When is the last day to drop classes and get full refund?

If your student decided to do online classes for fall 2020 and has a Housing Scholarship for fall and spring semester, how does that work?

  • The fall 2020 portion of the Housing Scholarship would be forfeited.
  • If your student wants to stay home in the fall but live on campus on the spring 2021 semester, the spring portion of the scholarship can be applied to their spring residence hall charges.
  • Students would need to notify the Department of Housing and Residence Life at housing@una.edu and complete the Housing exemption form.
  • Students would need to notify Student Financial Aid at sfins@una.edu

What measures are UNA taking to ensure student safety?

  • The guidance plan that has been provided outlines all the steps UNA is implementing to mitigate risk for the UNA community.

When will campus tours resume?

  • UNA currently has several options available for campus tours. Guests can tour campus virtually. This option is available on-demand for your convenience. Self-guided and virtual campus visits are available and can be scheduled on our visit page. In-person guided campus tours will be available beginning August 19. Registration for in-person guided tours will be available August 3. Students and guests will be required to wear cloth face coverings during in-person guided campus tours.