Planning for Fall 2020
What is the current situation in Montana with respect to the coronavirus?
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.
Is the School of Law planning to have live, face-to-face classes in Fall 2020? Will I be able to take my classes remotely?
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.
What if I get sick or am exposed to someone who has COVID-19?
How do I make up my work if I am impacted by COVID-19?
Do I need to wear a mask?
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).
What is the University doing to develop health and safety plans for fall?
When does the fall semester start?
When does fall semester end?
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.
Do I need to have a laptop computer?
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.
What are the housing options?
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.
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.