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Fall for SPA

Information for students about SPA's Fall 2020 Semester.

Message from the Dean

SPA Dean Vicky Wilkins

On July 30, President Burwell released a message describing the changes to AU’s Fall Plan. While we understand and support the decision to move all of our courses to a virtual format for Fall, we feel and share your disappointment. We cherish the face to face interactions we have with you and it is heartbreaking to think of the semester without you on campus.

We are also grateful for your willingness to share your COVID-related financial concerns with us. We heard you and used your experiences to advocate for and wholeheartedly support the discount on Fall tuition to meet the financial needs of this moment.

I also want to let you know that SPA faculty have been working tirelessly to prepare for their courses this Fall. Many of us became students again, taking courses on how to teach online. We have also held weekly “Show and Tell” sessions for faculty where they have talked about what works well in their online classes. In some of these sessions, we listened to SPA students, both undergraduate and graduate, who made presentations from the student perspective about what works well and what does not work in their online classes. We also understand the need for support services to support your educational experience, these critical services will be provided virtually. We are grateful for the feedback we have received from all of you – we are better because of it.

We hope you will join the student Q&A sessions that we will soon schedule for next week, and I also want you to feel free to reach out to me (spadean@american.edu) for any reason. We want to hear from you!

Please keep an eye out for these additional ways to engage:

  1. Information on student Q&A sessions.
  2. Announcement of exciting SPA Fall lecture series.
  3. Invitations to join me for “SPA Welcome Zooms.”
  4. Follow us on social media (@AU_SPA) for messages and updates.

Even though this is not the semester we planned or hoped for, I am confident that we will come away from this stronger because while we are physically distanced, we remain together!

Please take good care of yourself.

My best,
Vicky


SPA Courses

SPA courses will be taught in one or a blend of the following:

  • Live Online/Synchronous class time: Courses will be designed with a significant portion dedicated to live online meetings with faculty and students. These sessions will be recorded when possible, for students unable to attend. Synchronous class time will occur during scheduled class time.
  • Asynchronous class time: Faculty will post individual- and group-activities that students will complete on their own schedule.

How will students know what a Fall course will look like?

Based on faculty feedback, all Fall 2020 SPA courses received a “tag,” to describe to the student what to expect in terms of interaction for that course. The tags explain which modalities (listed above) will be used for this course. Students can find specific information on their course here.

Coronavirus Resources

Learn more about American University's resources surrounding the COVID-19 Pandemic

Learn More


2020 My SPA Experience

SPA Experience

While the Fall will bring challenges, it will also be an opportunity to explore new interests, learn new skills, enhance your classroom experience, and get to know D.C. – even remotely. This includes:

  1. Skills Training Offerings through the SPA Analytics and Management Institute (SAMI).
  2. Alumni/Student Networking - Connect through small group virtual meetings.
  3. Getting to Know D.C. Series - Get to know our city through the eyes of our students, staff, faculty, and alumni, by tuning in to a series of conversations and virtual visits.
  4. Lecture Series - This series will allow students to receive course credit for attending lectures/panels, meeting in small groups to discuss, and completing a short assignment. We are currently planning tracks around the following topics:
    1. Election 2020
    2. COVID-19 and The Response
    3. Race and Injustice in America

2020 My SPA Community

SPA Community

At any distance, our community will remain connected. Though we may be apart, our community activities, such as podcast club, book club, Alumni Speed Mentoring, Dean’s Office Hours, the Project on Civil Discourse, and Pizza with Professors will continue. Stay connected to SPA through email and social media to sign up for a spot.

American University School of Public Affairs

Videos

#FallforSPA Videos

Videos in this playlist

To play a specific video, use the playlist icon in the player or view each video on YouTube.

  1. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. Saul Newman

  2. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Teaser

  3. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. Saul Newman

  4. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Prof. Korneliya Bachiyska

  5. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Prof. Korneliya Bachiyska

  6. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. John Reeder

  7. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Professors Khaldoun AbouAssi & Anna Amirkhanyan

  8. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. Sasha O’Connell

  9. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - TaLisa Carter

  10. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. David Malet

  11. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. Marquise McGraw

  12. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Kevin Boyle

  13. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Prof. Chris Edelson

  14. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Prof. Chana Barron

  15. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. Andrew Flores

  16. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. Lara Schwartz

  17. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Prof. Sara Schotland

  18. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Janice Iwama

  19. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallForSPA - Prof. Thomas Zeitzoff

  20. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. James Quirk

  21. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Jane Palmer

  22. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Kevin Boyle

  23. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Alan Levine

  24. American University School of Public Affairs

    #FallforSPA - Prof. John Firman

Questions?

Have a more specific question about the Fall? The University's FAQs section is frequently updated with the most current information regarding the University's information and resources. If you don't see the answer to your question, suggest a question and the page may be updated with the appropriate information.