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Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Fall 2020 for Continuing CS Graduate Students

The pandemic situation is fluid and changes daily. Policies and information are subject to change.

The most up-to-date information for international students in the F-1 student visa category is at Protect Purdue.

  • For fall 2020 classes, students must choose between a residential experience and an "Online Experience." Please note that the word "online" can mean a fully online experience, or an online (virtual) component of a residential course, as explained next.
  • The residential option offers a version of what was typical in the past – with modifications to implement physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The residential classes that were scheduled for fall are being adapted by each faculty member/instructor. Many residential CS classes will be at least partially online. This positions the class to go fully online if the situation demands it. If contact tracing is necessary, it would be limited to the residential students.
  • Students who opt into the "Online Experience" may take classes for which a separate "OL" section has been created. These sections will be 100% online, with zero on-campus presence needed, not even for exams. Creation of these separate OL sections is to help Purdue limit contact tracing, and to allow reduced tuition and fees for remote students. Remote students may or may not be eligible for financial support, depending on their location and visa status. Rules for international students for Fall 2020 are still being clarified. International students should follow ISS and ICE guidance in determining whether OL is an appropriate option.

Nearly all CS grad courses are available as OL courses, including most required core courses. The list is available here. Please consult your advisor or the grad office for further guidance.

Information about spring courses will be added at a later date.

It depends on your location and status. Continuing CS Graduate students who will not be physically present on campus during Fall 2020, but hope to be supported as a graduate assistant (RA or GTA) will need to confirm their eligibility for paid remote work. If you are seeking GTA support, we will make every effort to provide a position.

If you will not be physically present on campus this Fall semester, but you are seeking support, contact the CS business office as soon as possible and copy Lacey (PhD students) or Belinda (MS students). The business office will assist you with paperwork to determine whether you are eligible to be paid while working remotely. Confirmation of eligibility does not guarantee a position; the usual processes of talking to your advisor and/or applying for a GTA position is needed. However, students not approved as eligible cannot be employed. The eligibility confirmation will take several weeks, so students are encouraged to start the processes ASAP.

All GTAs will be trained in safety protocols and expectations, as well as receiving information about new platforms and processes for working with students on-campus and online.

It depends on the course to which you are assigned. On-campus office hours must be conducted according to new safety protocols, which GTAs will be trained on.

Yes, the Lawson Building will open. Changes have been made to enforce social distancing in public areas and labs.

For RA work, continuing CS Graduate students who will not be physically present on campus during Fall 2020, but hope to be supported as a graduate assistant (RA or GTA) will need to confirm their eligibility for paid remote work. Please work with your advisor and the Business Office. A Change of Duty Station, Form 19, and/or Research In Absentia request may be needed.

  • Thesis research (CS 69900) can be conducted remotely assuming this has been approved by your advisor.

If you need to take courses:

  • Domestic students can take the Online Experience option. Research can also be done remotely as long as you have discussed this with your advisor and gotten approval.
  • International students can take the Online Experience option as long as they are not physically located in the U.S. If you are located in the U.S., but cannot make it to campus, you may need to take a semester off.

If you only need research registration:

  • Domestic and international students can take research remotely assuming this has been discussed with and approved by your advisor.
  • Please see questions above regarding funding for remote students.

The most up-to-date information can be found on the Protect Purdue website.

Students can provide their own face masks, but the University will provide a health kit, which includes a mask, to all students. 

Offices and common areas have been rearranged to enforce social distancing. Arrows have been placed along walkways and stairs for better flow and to ensure social distancing. Masks are required in all buildings.

All events will be virtual — career fairs, company days, and tech talks. 

Last Updated: Oct 14, 2020 11:15 AM

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