Planning for Fall 2020


Governor Steve Bullock has announced a phased approach to reopening the state. As of June 1, 2020, the state of Montana entered Phase 2, allowing gatherings of up to 50 people, with most businesses allowed to reopen subject to certain limitations. The phased approach allows localities to implement stricter limitations.

See the Missoula City-County Health Department’s COVID-19 information page for more details.

Please also see the Governor's Coronavirus Task Force website for more information.

Montana is fortunate to have extensive opportunities for outdoor recreation, most of which have remained open and accessible during the coronavirus. Trails and recreation areas provide excellent avenues to get out of the house and recharge.

The faculty has adopted a policy for the 2020-21 academic year allowing all students to choose to take any and all classes remotely. Accommodations or other explanations are not required. Students may simply choose to take classes at a distance if that makes the most sense for their situations. That means they do not have to be physically present in Missoula if they do not want to be. They may also choose to be in Missoula and engage in some in-person activities while taking classes remotely. Our goal is to give our students the flexibility to manage their situations in the best way for their circumstances.

There are still many questions this policy does not answer. Individual faculty are formulating course plans for fall. Those plans will determine which classes are offered in hybrid format (both in-person and remote), which are offered in a synchronous remote format, and which are offered in asynchronous remote format. Our target date for getting those details for students is August 1.

Stay home, self-quarantine and attend classes remotely for two weeks. The CDC recommends 14 days of quarantine after exposure based on the time it takes to develop illness if infected. This recommendation will prevent most, but cannot prevent all, instances of secondary spread.
If COVID-19 impacts your ability to participate as a student in your courses, please contact Associate Dean of Students Sally Weaver for assistance with appropriate accommodations.

Yes. The Montana governor, the Missoula City-County Board of Health and the University of Montana have each imposed mask requirement in a public setting. Follow signage across campus and ensure your nose and mouth are covered.

In addition, the University of Montana is providing each student and University employee with a health and safety kit (e.g. masks, hand sanitizer, disinfectant).

Orientation for new first-year students will take place from August 19-21, 2020. Classes begin for all students on August 24, 2020. See the full 2020-21 academic calendar here.

The last day of fall semester classes is Monday, November 30, which is the Monday after Thanksgiving break. No face-to-face classes will be held after Thanksgiving break. This means classes Monda, November 30, will be conducted remotely.  All final exams will be offered remotely.

Yes. Because of the likelihood that some classes will be taught remotely fall semester, students are required to have a laptop computer. Because laptops are mandatory, this will be part of your Cost of Attendance and therefore may qualify financial aid. For specific hardware recommendations, please see our Tech Recommendations webpage.

For additional tech support and resources, see the LawIT Student Support Moodle shell. It includes information on using UM Zoom and much more.

Missoula has a wide range of housing options, including University of Montana apartments, newer apartment complexes designed for student living and more conventional rentals. Here are some resources to help you get started in finding housing: University Villages, Lewis & Clark Village, ASUM Renter Center, ROAM, The Sawyer.

There are a number of property management companies in Missoula, all of which can be found online. We do not recommend any particular company. Craigslist can also be a good resource.

If you are a student in the Department of Public Administration and Policy (DPAP), please see the department-specific Safe Policies FAQ Guide on the DPAP website.

University Coronavirus Resources


The University has compiled all University-wide coronavirus-related updates, communications and other information on the UM Coronavirus Updates website.

UM has also created a Coronavirus Hotline at 406-243-INFO(4636), available from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday to speak with UM employees about your questions.

UM is closely tracking the COVID-19 case trends in both Missoula and across Montana. You can track Montana’s cases here.