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From the Office of the Registrar: Fall Class Modalities, Schedule, and Registration

I write to share information about Fall 2020 class modalities and class schedule publication and registration timelines.

Over the summer, faculty are preparing their Fall courses and determining the mode in which they will teach. The large majority of classes will be taught remotely, either synchronously or asynchronously, or in a hybrid mode that makes use of face-to-face meetings to supplement remote learning. Hybrid and remote classes can accommodate both students who will study remotely and those who plan to return to campus, which is especially important as we respond to new immigration requirements. A small number of courses will be taught entirely face to face. This teaching mode will be limited to classes in which the learning outcomes require special tools, technology, space, or mandatory in-person interaction. Our aim is to offer sufficient courses for our international students to meet the new in-person enrollment requirement as well. The teaching mode of each Fall class will be visible on the Class Descriptions page as well as in CAESAR. In that system it will be listed as a class attribute, which can be applied as a filter when searching for classes.

Registration and undergraduate pre-registration will take the same form as they have in the past, but our publication of class schedules is changing slightly. In an effort to share information with you as soon as it is available, we will publish basic Fall class data on our Class Descriptions page the week of July 20. Class descriptions will include the classes we plan to offer, their instructors and teaching mode; descriptions will not include class meeting times, rooms or capacity at that time, but a full class schedule with all the usual details will be published in CAESAR the week of August 10. This information may change as the public health environment develops.

Below please find the full publication and registration timeline:

  • Week of July 20: Basic class information published on the Class Descriptions page. 
  • Week of August 10: Full Fall class schedule published in CAESAR. 
  • Week of August 17: Undergraduate Pre-registration open to returning students and new transfer students.
  • Week of August 24: Registration open to returning graduate and undergraduate students and new undergraduate transfers.
  • September 4-16: New student registration. Programs will share registration details with new students directly as these dates draw closer.

As Fall registration draws closer, please watch your Northwestern email for more information. In addition to standard pre-term requirements, such as updating your local address, there will be new requirements as well. For example, we will ask you to tell us whether you plan to return to campus in-person, to review new policies and expectations, and to complete return-to-campus training before classes begin.

There are still many unknowns as the public health situation and our response to it develops. I hope this preview of our class modalities, registration and class schedule processes, in conjunction with the recent message about community health, help move your own planning forward. Later this month, your school will reach out to share details about what they’re planning for your Fall academic experience, and a similar note is forthcoming about student life. We also will have more specific guidance for international students soon. It’s our hope that through this series of messages, your experience as a Northwestern student this Fall will come into focus. Whether you will return in-person or remotely, we can't wait to have you back!

Be well, 

Jaci Casazza
Assistant Provost & University Registrar