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For complete information and updates on Tufts University’s COVID-19 policies and guidance, please consult these websites:

Return to Campus Guide (link coming soon)

All COVID-19 guidance for the Fletcher Community 

All COVID-19 information from Tufts

International Center COVID-19 updates

Information on testing at Tufts

Academics

In which format will Fletcher be offering courses for fall 2021 semester?

Most courses in fall 2021 will be delivered in-person, with some remote learning options. Most faculty will teach in person.  Few courses will be offered in the hybrid modality. A course schedule will be released on June 15, 2021, and it will be updated over the summer as needed.

In addition to our traditional face-to-face instruction, we will have two types of courses:

  • A hybrid course has in-person class meetings and activities along with the ability to participate entirely remotely. There will be few hybrid courses offered in fall 2021.
  • A remote course is taught virtually at scheduled times and may include synchronous and asynchronous components. There will be some remote courses offered in fall 2021.

SIS will indicate whether courses are in-person, hybrid, or remote. For hybrid courses, please  contact the course instructor for more information on attendance policies and class format.

Tufts Technology Services will provide training and support on how to use Zoom and other technologies in classrooms and spaces.  Please contact brad.macomber@tufts.edu for assistance.

What does hybrid mean and how will it be implemented?

Hybrid is an instructional delivery method for courses that will allow students to attend the class and participate remotely or in-person, with classroom capacities and seating distancing maintained in accordance with health and safety standards determined by the University in compliance with state and local public health guidance. All activities including instruction, discussion groups, presentations, simulations, review sessions, recitations, and examinations with have in-person and remote options for students.

Students should plan to attend their classes in-person during the published meeting times unless the modality indicates the course is taught remotely or has a hybrid instruction option. For hybrid courses, the in-person component will vary from class to class, and students are advised to check with the instructor if interested in enrolling in a hybrid course. All classroom capacities will be maintained in accordance with health and safety standards determined by the University in compliance with state and local public health guidance. 

If a class is listed as hybrid, can I still choose to take it entirely remote?

Yes. All courses listed as hybrid or remote will have a fully remote option. 

If a course is listed in-person, students are expected to be in the classroom during the published meeting times, and a remote option is not available. All classroom capacities will be maintained in accordance with health and safety standards determined by the University in compliance with state and local public health guidance.

When will the class schedules be published?

On June 15, a full class schedule will be published on the website, indicating which courses will be in remote or hybrid format, and including class meeting times and instructor information. 

When will I register for classes?

For continuing students who have two semesters or fewer remaining at Fletcher, your registration will begin on Tuesday, August 17 at 12:00 PM EST. All others will register on Monday, August 30 at 12:00 PM EST.

Will there be a Shopping Day for fall courses?

There will be a Shopping Day event held during Orientation on Friday, September 3. More information will be available in mid-August.

When will classes start?

The first day of classes will be Tuesday, September 7, 2021.  The academic calendar for fall 2021 is available here.

Can I take classes on a pass/fail basis (like in Spring 2020)?

No, the exception made during spring term 2020 was a temporary response with the goal of minimizing students’ stress during a rapid transition from residential to remote instruction and learning.

Will I be able to audit courses?

There are no changes to our policy on auditing Fletcher classes. Please refer to the Student Handbook and myFletcher for information on auditing a course.

Will I be able to cross-register?

There are no changes to our policy on cross-registration. Please refer to the Student Handbook and myFletcher for information on cross-registration. Note that each school has its own academic calendar, and students are responsible for knowing the registration deadlines and other key dates for enrollment. Students in their final semester are advised that their grades from cross-registration courses may not be submitted by the Fletcher grade deadline, and their graduation date may be changed if a grade is unavailable.

Is it possible to take classes at other universities in the fall?

Fletcher’s transfer credit policy applies for students who enroll at another institution. Please refer to the Student Handbook.

Do courses have enrollment caps?

Most courses do not have enrollment limits. Fletcher reserves the right to cap enrollment on a course in accordance with health and safety standards determined by the University in compliance with state and local public health guidance.

How can I meet with my faculty advisor if I am fully remote?

All faculty will hold regular office hours with options for in-person and remote meetings with students. Faculty office hours will be posted on myFletcher.

Can I attend Fletcher part-time?

Students in fall 2021 should plan to enroll in a full-time course load. Students requesting an exception should consult with the Fletcher Registrar. 

I studied part-time in fall 2020 or spring 2021. Can I take five courses in future semesters to catch up?

Students are permitted to take a fifth course and will be charged additional tuition on a per-course basis. MALD and PhD candidates are permitted on two occasions during their degree program to take five courses in a semester. MA, MATA, and LLM candidates are permitted to do so once. The fifth course does not permit a student to enroll in less than full-time in a future semester. Students will be charged on a per-course basis for the fifth course.

Pursuing five courses in a semester is optional, meaning that students are not required to take a fifth course (except for MIB degree candidates). Grading and transcript policies are the same for all courses. Fifth courses appear on students’ transcripts. If a student withdraws from an optional fifth course after the drop deadline, a grade of “W” is recorded on the transcript. Financial aid may not be available for students taking an optional fifth course.

Can I still take 4.5 courses in a semester?

Yes, students (except in the MIB program) can take 4.5 courses once during their Fletcher career with no additional tuition charge. The Fletcher School offers a limited number of half courses every year. Additionally, half courses are also offered at other institutions where Fletcher has cross-registration agreements. Please refer to the Student Handbook.

If I get sick, how can I make up for missed class time?

Students who miss a class or an assignment due to an illness or personal matter should contact their faculty directly and discuss how to complete any missed work. Faculty will be as fair and flexible as possible when receiving students’ requests.

What kind of technical support will be available?

Students have access to a variety of Tufts software and systems to learn, study, and engage with colleagues remotely. Visit Learning Remotely for a list of programs and tools available to all Tufts students. The Service Desk is open 24 hours, 7 days a week and can answer questions about Tufts technology systems or provide advice for personal computers and devices. Email it@tufts.edu or call 617-627-3376 for assistance. Ginn Library manages the technology environment at Fletcher. For specific questions about technology at Fletcher, email ginnlibrary@tufts.edu.

COVID-19 Policies & Testing Protocol

For the most recent testing updates and planning resources relating to COVID-19 please visit the following pages: Tufts COVID-19 & Testing at Tufts.

Where can I find complete information on Tufts University’s COVID-19 policies and the latest statistics from the testing program?

Please consult these sites for complete information:

COVID-19 vaccine information from Tufts

Return to Campus Guide (link coming soon)

All COVID-19 guidance for the Fletcher Community 

All COVID-19 information from Tufts

International Center COVID-19 updates

Information on testing at Tufts

How can I obtain a COVID vaccine if I don’t have one by the time I get to Tufts this fall?

Students (including undergraduate, graduate, professional, and non-traditional students) will need to be vaccinated prior to participating in on-campus classes or activities. For students in the School of Medicine, School of Dental Medicine, and Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, the deadline for vaccination will be July 1. For students in all other Tufts schools, the deadline will be the beginning of the fall semester. We will assist students who have limited access to vaccine in meeting this requirement shortly after their arrival on campus. Like other vaccine requirements in place for students, medical and religious exemptions will be considered. More details about this policy, including information on how to submit proof of vaccination status, is available here: https://coronavirus.tufts.edu/healthy-at-tufts/covid-19-vaccinations-tufts

What are the Massachusetts travel guidelines?

At the time these FAQs were published, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts advised new arrivals to the state to self-quarantine for 10 days, unless they can prove they have had a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of arrival or are fully vaccinated. All Fletcher students who travel to Massachusetts should plan their travel to allow up to 10 days to quarantine at their local address before they seek to visit campus. Please find the latest updates here.

Will the university require COVID-19 testing in the 2021-2022 academic year?

Yes. All students who wish to access campus are required to complete arrival testing and participate in routine/surveillance testing. The details have not been finalized, however, we anticipate that prior to accessing campus students will need to receive one negative test taken at Tufts and then will begin routine/surveillance testing. Further details regarding onboard testing and accessing campus will be distributed later. Please see additional information on testing here.

After the initial onboarding tests, how often will I need to be tested to continue accessing campus?

Fletcher students who wish to access campus will likely be tested once each week, following the initial onboarding tests. Students who wish to access campus must attend their regular tests otherwise they will be unable to access campus. Details on the routine/surveillance testing are forthcoming.

How should I schedule my initial onboarding test and when will the test be?

Please stay tuned for further information on sign-up instructions and timing of the initial onboarding test. 

How soon after being tested should I expect to receive my test results?

The University’s COVID-19 tests are processed by the Broad Institute and results are shared approximately 24 hours from when the test kit arrives at the Institute for processing.

How much does the test cost?

The University is covering the costs of all routine testing. Symptomatic testing at Tufts Health Service will be billed to your insurance.

What should I do if I need to reschedule a test?

If you must miss a test beyond one day, please fill out this application and include a detailed explanation of why you will miss your test. The Office of Student Affairs will review your form and consult with the Executive Associate Dean, the Associate Dean of Admissions and Student Affairs, and/or Tufts Health Service as necessary. You can expect a response as to whether you have been approved to miss your test within 3-5 business days. Please remember that the testing program and protocols are part of the University’s broader effort to protect the safety of members of the University and our host communities. Failure to follow these policies may jeopardize your ability to access campus.

What is the policy for Fletcher students who live off campus and will not be using any of the Fletcher/Tufts facilities?

For those living out of the Boston area, we ask that you follow guidelines determined by local and state authorities.  You are not required to submit to the testing protocol unless you plan on accessing the Tufts/Fletcher campus.  Therefore, if you are located a short distance from campus, Fletcher recommends that you participate in the testing protocol so that you will have the option of visiting campus and taking classes in person.

If I live further away from campus and want to come for a week or two for research, can I get tested and then access campus?

As of now, no. However, this may change during the next academic year. 

If I receive a negative test result somewhere else, do I still need to get the test at Tufts?

Yes. Tufts/Fletcher requires that you participate in the Tufts testing protocols if you are accessing the campus and facilities during the semester.

Am I able to join the testing protocol midway through the semester?

Yes. Students can contact FletcherStudentAffairs@tufts.edu

Can I leave the testing protocol midway through the semester?

Yes. Students can contact FletcherStudentAffairs@tufts.edu

If I access campus and I am in the testing protocol, will I have to follow any travel restrictions?

As of right now, yes. However, we anticipate this may change. 

Avoiding travel will reduce exposure to COVID-19 and mitigate the risk of community spread. As of spring 2021, the University and Fletcher ask students to refrain from extended personal travel and time away from their local homes, from when they arrive on campus to when they leave the area after the semester has concluded.

Extended personal travel is defined as leaving the confines of the campus community overnight or engaging in any activity off campus (such as refraining from physical distancing, not wearing a mask, etc.) that would put you at risk for COVID-19 exposure.

This advisory is in place for the health of our entire community, since reducing the number of individual exposures is important to reducing further community spread and protecting those who are vulnerable to complications and death from COVID-19. Students should recognize that traveling during their time on campus may put their fellow students and other community members at risk.

At the same time, The Fletcher School understands that there may be circumstances in which a student needs to travel. If you must travel, please fill out this application and include a detailed explanation of why you need to travel and miss your test. The Office of Student Affairs will review your form and consult with the Executive Associate Dean, the Associate Dean of Admissions and Student Affairs, and/or Tufts Health Service as necessary. You can expect a response as to whether you have been approved to miss your test within 3-5 business days.  

Please remember that the testing program and protocols are part of the University’s broader effort to protect the safety of members of the University and our host communities. Failure to follow these policies may jeopardize your ability to access campus.

What happens if I test positive for COVID-19?

If a student’s COVID-19 test is positive, the individual will be contacted by phone by a healthcare clinician/provider and given instructions for appropriate next steps and care, and will be able to begin isolation, which also initiates the contact tracing process. Students local to campus will be given the option to isolate on campus in the modular units. 

What happens if I am identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19?

If the contact tracing process indicates that you have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you will be asked to quarantine and report any new symptoms or change of symptoms to Health Services calling 617-627-3350.  More information is available at the Testing at Tufts website.

Tuition & Financial Aid

If I attend Fletcher part-time in fall 2021, how will it affect tuition, scholarship, and federal loans?

Your tuition will be prorated to reflect the number of courses you are taking. Your scholarship will also be prorated to reflect the lower tuition cost. Students need to be enrolled at least part-time (2 courses, 6 SHUs) to be eligible for federal student loans.

I am an incoming student; can I still request a deferral?

Yes, requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Please reach out to the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid (fletcheradmissions@tufts.edu) for details.

I am a continuing student; can I request a leave of absence? How will it affect my scholarship and loans?

Yes. The deadline to request a personal leave of absence for the fall 2021 semester is August 1, 2021. Students who wish to request a personal leave of absence should contact the Fletcher Registrar. 

Students who are requesting a leave of absence due to medical reasons should submit a letter to the Director of Student Affairs (katie.mulroy@tufts.edu) stating their reason and the duration of their request. A small committee of faculty and administrators will review leave of absence requests. For further information on leaves of absence, including applying for leaves, returning from a leave, financial aid considerations, visa considerations, and access to university resources while on leave, please refer to the Student Handbook.

Students on a leave of absence continue to have access to Tufts systems that require a username and password such as Box, Canvas, Fletcher CORE, and Library systems. Per University policy, students on a leave of absence, however, are not enrolled and do not have access to services for enrolled students, including opportunities to work for Fletcher or Tufts departments, take or audit classes, access Ginn Library, access the Office of Career Services, or serve in leadership positions in student organizations.

Scholarships will be carried forward and applied when you return from your leave. Federal educational loans will go into repayment after the six-month grace period is exhausted.  Most private loans will go into repayment after 30 days.

What do I need to do in order to return to campus if I have been on a leave of absence?

If you are on a current leave of absence (non-medical leave), you should contact the Fletcher Registrar to request a return from leave. The last day to return from leave for fall 2021 is Friday, September 3, 2021.

Students on leave for medical reasons should follow the instructions on their leave of absence letter to return from leave.

When will bills for the fall 2021 semester be sent? When will bills be due?

Bills for the fall semester will be emailed during the first week of July 2021. Payment will be due approximately one month after they are sent out.

International Students

For the most recent immigration updates and planning resources relating to the COVID-19 coronavirus situation please visit the International Center COVID-19 page.

I am a new international student at Fletcher for fall 2021. Are there any changes in US immigration policy regarding hybrid courses taken in fall 2021?

Based on U.S. federal government guidance announced on April 26, 2021, there is no change in the course-taking and visa status maintenance rule for the F-1 and J-1 international students: who are outside the United States will not be able to enter the United States to start new programs if the programs will be solely remote. If the new students study on-campus by taking at least one hybrid course (combination of in-person and remote course session), he/she may apply for the visa at the US Embassy or Consulate office in the home country. 

If you had originally received an I-20 or DS-2019 visa certificate from Tufts for the Spring semester and later had them reissued for the fall 2021 semester, please contact the International Center to ensure your documents are in order.  If you have not yet started the I-20 / DS-2019 application process, please request it via the International Center website.  The deadline for the fall 2021 semester visa document is June 30, 2021. 

I am an international student; can I take a leave of absence? Can I remain in the US for the semester?

You may request a leave of absence following Fletcher procedures for a leave. Students who wish to take a medical leave of absence should contact the Director of Student Affairs (katie.mulroy@tufts.edu) stating the reason and duration of the request. Students who wish to take a personal leave should contact the Fletcher Registrar (Andrew.Marx@tufts.edu). If your leave request has been approved, please contact the International Center (Reiko.Ohmura@tufts.edu) to be advised about your visa options.  

In general, international students are eligible to take leaves, but since this may impact your ability to stay in the United States on a student visa, please explore your options with the International Center directly. International students who opt to take a leave of absence for any reason (except medical reasons) are required to leave the U.S. for the semester.

I am an international student; can I enroll part-time?

Yes, part-time enrollment is allowed while studying remotely outside of the United States.  However, international graduate students cannot maintain the visa status on campus unless they take courses full-time.  

Full time for international students is defined as a minimum of nine credits (9 SHU or the equivalent of 3 Fletcher courses) per semester. Please visit the International Center website for more information.

I have questions about my visa and I-20 status. Where can I find this information?

The Tufts University International Center website includes visa and immigration updates for the fall 2021 semester. You may also contact Reiko Ohmura (Reiko.Ohmura@tufts.edu), International Student Advisor for Fletcher students, with your questions. The International Center will also continue to share information as they learn it by emailing the entire Tufts international student and scholar community.

What support is available for international students?

International students will receive guidance directly from the International Center regarding immigration and visa-related questions as well as cultural adjustments and events information. The International Center is maintaining an information page that includes immigration updates and other notes specific to the Tufts international community.

What happens to my visa and I-20 if I am unable to come to the US for fall 2021?

If you are unable to come to the US for fall 2021, but have already started the visa document (I-20) request process, contact the International Center regarding your specific situation. We will have to determine your options based on your prior US immigration history (if applicable), your specific program, and other factors.

Once obtaining your I-20 and not able to obtain the visa soon enough for the arrival by the I-20 start date due to the backlog at the US Embassy, please contact the Fletcher Admissions, Registrar and Reiko Ohmura as soon as possible.

Living Accommodations, Buildings, and Dining Services

If I am moving to the Medford area, how can I find housing?

All students can log into Tufts’ Off-campus housing portal to look at listings, search for roommates, and connect with real estate agents. For general off-campus housing resources, please go here. You can also join the Fall 2021 Incoming Class Private Facebook group to see housing postings by current students! 

The Blakeley residential facility will be closed for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Will the Fletcher academic complex and the Ginn Library be open ?

The Fletcher complex and Ginn Library are open to students who are part of the campus testing program. Entrance to the buildings now requires swiping a Tufts ID that has been activated to allow campus access. Students will have their ID activated when they participate in the testing protocol. The University may deactivate the ID cards of students who miss required follow-up tests. Access to campus buildings will be restored after the student has completed the follow-up test. Ginn Library is open only to Fletcher students at this time. New occupancy restrictions limit the number of individuals who can be in the library at one time to about 100 and a reservation will be required to use the facility.

The Ginn Library circulation desk will be a no-contact service point. Students can either use a self-checkout system or submit an online request to have books pulled from stacks for contactless pickup. Research and reference support will be provided through the Ask a Librarian portal on the Ginn Library website. Visit the Ginn Library website for hours of operation and current library policies.

Will campus dining services be available?

Mugar Café is open for community members, with a new traffic flow to comply with COVID safety. Vending machines and water fountains are available. Find out which other locations are open and their hours on the Tufts Dining homepage.

Student Life

What can I expect from Fletcher’s new student Orientation and when does it begin?

Orientation for incoming students has two goals: to introduce students to Fletcher academic and student life, and to build community among our students, faculty, and staff.

 Orientation consists of two major components:

  1. Pre-Orientation Modules: 
    The Pre-Orientation modules are designed to provide you with information necessary to succeed at Fletcher. These online modules contain information on registering for courses, planning your curriculum, health and wellbeing resources at Tufts, diversity and inclusion, student services, libraries, information technology resources, and more. The modules will be accessible online in advance and must be completed prior to the start of Orientation.
  2. Orientation Week: 
    Orientation Week begins on August 30, 2021. Some events will be held in-person and others will be offered online. Orientation week includes sessions on academics, as well as various social activities for you to get to know your classmates. Additionally, during Orientation Week, you will be grouped into cohort groups of approximately 10-15 incoming students, with second-year students, faculty, and staff mentors. The cohort groups will meet throughout Orientation Week.

We will link to the August 2021 Orientation schedule as soon as it’s available. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Will there be guest speakers, conferences and events in the 2021-2022 academic year?

Yes. Fletcher will hold events and conferences both in-person and remotely. Keep an eye on the myFletcher Calendar for upcoming events! To help organize an event, be on the lookout for emails from conference organizers, student clubs, or Fletcher’s centers.

Can remote students still be involved in student organizations and activities?

Absolutely! Student organizations and extra-curricular activities are part of the core Fletcher experience and will offer hybrid activities. More details on student organizations and activities is available here.

Will student organizations be able to hold meetings in person? Can I meet with other students in person on campus?

Yes. Students and organizations will be able to meet and hold meetings or events in person provided they follow all campus safety guidelines. 

How can I access student services if I am remote?

All student services offices throughout Fletcher and Tufts are ready to support students remotely. For further information please navigate to the specific office below:

Health & Safety

What services will the University’s Health Service provide during the 2021-2022 academic year?

Health Service will provide telemedicine and in-person appointments for students living locally on campus. Students outside of Massachusetts will have access to some medical telehealth consultation. Please call 617-627-3350 or visit the website for additional information.

The Health Service business office will continue to help students with their insurance needs and answer medical billing questions.  They will also help with immunizations and assist with healthcare-related financial issues.

The CARE Office and Health Promotion will operate in person and remotely. The CARE Office offers consultation for students dealing with sexual misconduct issues regardless of location.

What services will University Counseling and Mental Health Service provide during the 2021-2022 academic year?

Counseling and Mental Health Service (CMHS) is available to all students. CMHS offers individual in-person and telehealth appointments, remote support groups/workshops, and/or assistance with referral, as appropriate. To schedule an appointment call 617-627-3360, or for more information, visit its website.

The University Chaplaincy is available to all members of the Tufts community for emotional and spiritual support. Please email the chaplaincy (chaplaincy@tufts.edu) to connect with a chaplain in person, by phone, Zoom, or WebEx.

Will I still be required to enroll in the University's Health Insurance plan, even if I only attend classes remotely?

Tufts students will be billed for student insurance as they have every year but may waive the University’s insurance if they have their own qualified, comprehensive plan.

Students who have health insurance and choose not to enroll in the University’s plan will need to complete the Health Insurance Waiver on their SIS account on the “Bills & Balances” tab. 

Will I still need to pay the Health and Wellness Fee even if I only attend classes remotely?

Yes. The Health and Wellness Fee is required of all students per the university’s policy.

There is, however, an exception to the policy for the 2021-2022 academic year for Fletcher students during this unusual year. Students enrolled in the student health insurance and students residing in Massachusetts, will be charged the full health and wellness fee. Students residing outside of Massachusetts, whether in the US or internationally, AND not enrolled in the student health insurance will be charged 75% of the health and wellness fee. Those students who enroll in the University’s student health insurance plan will be assessed the full Health and Wellness Fee, regardless of location.

There is, however, an exception to the policy for the 2021-2022 academic year for Fletcher students during this unusual year. Students enrolled in the student health insurance and students residing in Massachusetts, will be charged the full health and wellness fee. Students residing outside of Massachusetts, whether in the US or internationally, AND not enrolled in the student health insurance will be charged 75% of the health and wellness fee. Those students who enroll in the University’s student health insurance plan will be assessed the full Health and Wellness Fee, regardless of location. 

The reduction in the fee for students living outside of Massachusetts will be applied to student accounts, after Fletcher has worked with Health Service to determine who should receive the reduced fee. Those who anticipate that they will qualify for a refund have two options: pay their bill in full and then use the credit toward charges for the spring semester; or pay the bill in full, minus one quarter of the fall Health and Wellness Fee, so that the bill will zero out after the credit is applied.

Payment of the Health and Wellness Fee provides access to the following: University Health Service, Counseling and Mental Health Service, the CARE Office, and the Health Promotion department.

Students who are remote have access to telemedicine services (including teletherapy through the Counseling and Mental Health Service), though certain legal restrictions may apply depending on your location.