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COVID-19 Updates: Stay Informed


COVID-19 FAQs for Graduate Students

When are graduate students able to return to campus?

All courses taught at SDSU have moved online beginning March 23rd through August 21st. In-person instruction will not resume for the Spring or Summer semester. Students are advised to remain off campus through August 15th. Students should continue to check their university email for any changes or updates.


All course instruction is online for the Spring and Summer 2020 semesters.  What if there are issues accessing courses?

Students should ensure all SDSU Student Accounts are established and functioning. Access to MyState, Jacks Email and D2L will be required. For login help, click here. Resources to assist students for successful online learning and troubleshooting can be found on the Learn Online page. Students should also be in contact with course instructors if there are any access issues.


SDSU is providing an alternative grading option for the Spring 2020 semester. How can students elect to adjust Spring course grades to S/U (S = Satisfactory, U = Unsatisfactory)? 

Students will have the opportunity from May 4-18, 2020 to select whether or not they want to receive an S/U grade for one or more courses for the spring 2020 semester, if they are in a major or program where S/U grades are allowed. A list of ineligible programs can be found here. More information on alternative grading can be found on the Grading Option FAQ page


How should students’ complete final oral exams, comprehensive exams, or other committee meetings while course instruction is online?

Graduate students completing any type of oral exam or holding any type of committee meeting should make accommodations to utilize zoom or other electronic capabilities. On MyState under the Resources tab, there is a portlet for Zoom that includes helpful information, how-to guides, etc. Additional resources for technology tools will also be posted. Students should work with their advisor/committee to determine dates, times, and accommodations that work best for everyone. Graduate students should check with their advisor/committee to determine how best to proceed with written exams.


What if students are not able to meet the graduate deadlines or complete a practicum/internship/field experience due to the ramifications of the COVID-19 outbreak?

The Graduate School understands that the COVID-19 pandemic has created obstacles that are outside of a student’s control. The office will work with students on an individual basis to complete degree requirements. Students should work directly with their advisor/course instructor/supervisor when attempting to complete all practical experiences.


How do the University’s updated protocol due to COVID-19 impact graduate students serving as Graduate Assistants (GRA/GTA/GAA)?

Students serving as Graduate Assistants should remain off campus while the University is closed unless they are deemed essential employees. Graduate Assistants should contact their direct supervisor for specific direction regarding their role as employees and how to best complete work requirements.


Are Graduate Assistants able to return to campus to perform work related duties/research?

Graduate Assistants are classified as University employees and may return to the University when faculty and staff are able pending direct supervisor approval. Graduate Assistants should contact their direct supervisor to determine specific work schedules and where their work should be conducted. Non-essential personnel may be asked to work remotely. Communication is of utmost priority during this time; thus it is imperative that GA’s check e-mail regularly.


Will Graduate Assistants continue to be paid while the University moves to online instruction?

All GRAs/GTAs will continue to receive their monthly stipends regardless if their work is completed on or off campus. GAAs will need to submit their monthly time sheet and will be paid for the hours they work. GAAs are not be eligible to receive administrative leave. All Graduate Assistants should work with their direct supervisor to determine what, if any, work can be completed remotely.


The University will not be holding in-person classes the remainder of the Spring semester or Summer semester.  Does this impact other gatherings on campus?

SDSU has cancelled all events and visitor activities through August 15th. The University will continue to evaluate the situation and determine if future activities or gatherings will occur. The following SDSU facilities will remain closed until further notice: Wellness Center, McCrory Gardens, South Dakota Art Museum, South Dakota Agricultural Heritage Museum, University Bookstore in the University Student Union, SDSU Dairy Bar, Meat Lab store, and the Fishback Early Learning Center Preschool.


Has University travel been impacted by COVID-19?

All SDSU-sponsored and SDSU-endorsed international and out of state travel has been suspended until further notice. In-state travel will be determined on a case-by-case basis. Students choosing to travel on their own should take appropriate precautions and limit group exposure as recommended by the CDC. Any student who has travelled to a country classified as a Level 3 or 4 for coronavirus outbreak is recommended to adhere to the voluntary 14 day self-quarantine per CDC guidelines. Any student in that situation must also contact the Student Health Center upon returning to the United States.


I have a question about how COVID-19 impacts me as a graduate student that has not been answered here. Who can I talk to?

Students can contact the Graduate School at Staff will assist when able or direct students to the appropriate contact person.