School of Kinesiology Fall 2020 Planning

Kraus Building

Dear Kinesiology students and parents,
Yesterday, President Schlissel announced plans for the University of Michigan’s 2020-21 academic year. Here are the most important things you should know.

Please visit for the most up-to-date information as we get closer to fall.

Academic Calendar

The university has made adjustments to reduce back-and-forth travel and allow sufficient time between semesters for implementing any needed public health protocols.
Fall 2020

  • Fall classes begin Aug. 31, 2020, and meet continuously through Nov. 20.
  • There will be no fall break.
  • The last day of in-person classes is Nov. 20, the Friday before Thanksgiving. Students are strongly advised to travel home and remain there until the winter term begins.
  • Fall classes resume Nov. 30–Dec. 8 as remote-only instruction, with exams and final projects conducted remotely.

Winter 2021

  • Winter semester will begin on Jan. 18, 2021, with a day celebrating the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Classes will begin on Jan. 19 and meet continuously through April 20.
  • There will be no winter break.
  • The later start to the semester is designed to provide students with additional time for rest and self-isolation (if needed before returning to campus), and faculty planning for winter instruction.
  • Final projects and exams are expected to be done remotely from April 22–29.



  • The School of Kinesiology is carefully evaluating all our classes to determine which will be in-person and which will be remote. We expect that most of our courses will use the hybrid approach that utilizes both remote and in-person teaching methods.
  • We’re prioritizing lab and hands-on learning courses for in-person instruction. We’re also prioritizing some of our intro-level courses for in-person instruction to help new students adjust to campus life and connect with faculty and fellow students.
  • We know that some of you may choose or need to take all your classes remotely, and are including this consideration in our planning.
  • We hope to have concrete answers about our class structure to you in mid- to late July.
  • We’re confident that, regardless of where classes are held, you’ll receive the same quality Michigan education you expect and deserve.

Health & Safety

  • The School of Kinesiology is working to ensure that our three buildings will be as safe as possible when the new academic year starts. This will include wearing face masks, using one-way stairwells, creating spaced seating, and more. A health and safety plan will also be in place for our new building when it opens in January.
  • Health and safety officials will continue extensive monitoring in real time and will continue as long as it is needed, allowing us to act promptly if conditions change.
  • It will be imperative for all of us to monitor any symptoms and stay home if we’re sick. If you do become sick, or are exposed to someone who is sick, we will have these measures in place:
    • U-M is finalizing plans and protocols for testing for infection with the virus that causes COVID-19, as well as building capacity for additional contact tracing.
    • Michigan Housing will set aside living spaces to quarantine and care for any of you who may have significant exposure to others diagnosed with COVID-19 while on campus, as well as isolate those diagnosed with this infection who cannot return home to recuperate.
    • Our University Health Service (UHS) will continue to provide outstanding care to our students. For any who might become seriously ill, our world-class health system, Michigan Medicine, is steps away and stands at the ready.



  • If you plan on living in U-M housing, you should self-quarantine for 14 days prior to arriving on campus.
  • If you live in a communal setting such as a residence hall, your room will be considered your “family unit;” in the case of an off-campus house/apartment, this will be considered your “family unit” where safety measures such as wearing face masks and physical distancing can be relaxed.
  • Those of you planning to live in U-M residence halls will receive more specific information from Michigan Housing in the weeks to come.

Campus Experience


  • Many community-building and learning opportunities are being adapted to serve you best, including recreational sports, fitness classes, student group activities, performances, and other socially enriching experiences across campus.
  • Physical distancing will be necessary to maintain in some settings, such as common spaces, dining areas, and transportation.


The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all in a variety of ways. Some of us have lost loved ones; faced employment, housing, or food insecurity; experienced health issues; or have been separated from friends and family. Understandably, you might be feeling anxious about returning to campus. Please know that we are here to support you, both now and during the new academic year. If you need support, I encourage you to reach out to:

  • School of Kinesiology Student Affairs. Our undergraduate and graduate staff can meet with you virtually about both academic and non-academic matters.
  • Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS). This free and confidential counseling service is available to all students. Visit to access resources or make a virtual appointment.
  • SilverCloud. This free and confidential online, self-guided, interactive mental health resource is available to all students. It’s not designed to replace in-person mental health treatment, but may be an effective option to help manage day-to-day stresses and anxiety; improve resilience; learn skills to understand thoughts, feelings, and behaviors; and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. Visit to use this resource.

Concluding Thoughts

I know that this academic year will look and feel different. Despite our careful planning, we’ll need to remain agile and ready to adapt if circumstances change. And we all must commit to protecting our community by following the university’s guidelines.

I know you can and you will, because you’re the Leaders and Best. We’re looking forward to seeing you this fall.

Stay safe and healthy, and GO BLUE.


Lori Ploutz-Snyder, PhD
Professor and Dean,
University of Michigan School of Kinesiology