Because of the pandemic, this is going to be another weird semester. We will do the best we can to make it as normal as possible, first and foremost by having in-person classes as regularly as we are permitted to under university guidelines and trying to move forward with the usual field assignments and other experiences that characterize the sports media program at UGA. But we need two things in return from you.
First, take the virus seriously. Get tested often and don’t put yourself in risky situations. And don’t be afraid to quarantine if you are exposed to someone with the virus. There is no shame in contracting it; sadly, people have died despite doing all the right things. But you can make a difference by washing your hands, wearing a mask, and maintaining social distance. See below for more details and resources from the university.
Second, if you do have to quarantine and/or test positive, please let your Introsports instructor know as soon as possible. Students who are in quarantine will have a separate meeting by Zoom each week to go over issues in class and discuss progress. Quarantining students from all three sections will meet together at a specific time; we’ll call it “Section Q.” We will not do “Zoom-ins” to class or split the class up unless we are instructed to by the university. Section Q participants will not be counted absent from their regular classes as long as they have told their instructors of quarantining prior to class.
Finally, to emphasize that last point, just let us know what’s going on. If you’re struggling with the problems of this year, reach out and let us know. We’ll make a point of reaching out to you, but you need to do the same with us. In particular, if you have challenges with class or with field assignments, you need to let us know BEFORE, not after. We can work with alternative schedules, but we can’t solve your problems once you’ve created them.
If one of the instructors tests positive, we will let you know how we will proceed.
General class policies
All assignments and exercises are to be turned in by the designated deadline, unless the instructors announce otherwise.
We will not accept assignments turned in after deadline. Deadlines are 11:59 p.m. on the date specified unless otherwise listed. If you miss deadline, you get a zero for the assignment. No exceptions, unless you provide documented proof of a major medical or other emergency that took place while completing the assignment. Problems with technology or other equipment do not constitute excusable emergencies. If we are working on a tight deadline, you are responsible for testing your equipment ahead of the deadline.
Your assignments must be written to the assigned length. We will deduct 10% from the assignment grade for stories that are more than 10% shorter or longer than the assigned length.
Your assignments must conform to AP style and the rules of proper grammar. If you have more than five style and/or grammar errors in one assignment, we will deduct 50 percent from your assignment grade.
You must avoid factual errors, including misspelled names. The first one you make will automatically reduce your assignment grade by half. Any others, throughout the duration of the semester, will result in a grade of zero for the assignment.
You must silence your cell phones at the start of every class. Any exceptions must be approved by the instructors.
We will be working with social media and visiting web sites as part of our class work and discussion. But if you are online for personal reasons during class, you will be assessed an absence for that class.
You are allowed three unchallenged absences during the semester. Any absences beyond the three each will result in a two-point deduction from your overall class grade. There are no other “excused” absences. If you have a major medical or other emergency that results in more than three absences, you must provide documentation. In general, we would classify a major emergency as something that keeps you out of all your UGA classes and activities for more than a week. We only want documentation for major emergencies. If you have a medical or other situation that keeps you out of class for just a day, that day will count against your unchallenged absences. We do not want documentation in those instances.
While you are in class, and while you are representing the class, you are not a sports fan. Leave your loyalties at home. Do not wear team or event logos or any other sports-related clothing or other items to class, or to any event you attend or any interview you conduct for this class. You will be counted absent from any such event
Be aware that any form of plagiarism will trigger harsh consequences, possibly including a failing grade for the class and expulsion from the University. If you are unclear on what constitutes plagiarism, please check with the instructors.
University COVID policies:
Coronavirus Information for Students
As a reminder, the University of Georgia—along with all University System of Georgia (USG) institutions—requires all faculty, staff, students, and visitors to wear an appropriate face covering while inside campus facilities/buildings where six feet social distancing may not always be possible. Anyone not using a face covering when required will be asked to wear one or must leave the area. Reasonable accommodations may be made for those who are unable to wear a face covering for documented health reasons. Students seeking an accommodation related to face coverings should contact Disability Services at
Students showing symptoms should self-isolate and schedule an appointment with the University Health Center by calling 706-542-1162 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.). Please DO NOT walk-in. For emergencies and after-hours care, see
Any student with a positive COVID-19 test is required to report the test in DawgCheck and should self-isolate immediately. Students should not attend classes in-person until the isolation period is completed. Once you report the positive test through DawgCheck, UGA Student Care and Outreach will follow up with you.
What do I do if I am notified that I have been exposed?
Revised Guidelines for COVID-19 Quarantine Period
Effective Jan. 4, 2021, students who learn they have been directly exposed to COVID-19 but are not showing symptoms should self-quarantine for 10 days (consistent with updated Department of Public Health (DPH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines). Those quarantining for 10 days must have been symptom-free throughout the monitoring period. Please correspond with your instructor via email, with a cc: to Student Care & Outreach at
, to coordinate continuing your courseworkwhile self-quarantined.
We strongly encourage students to voluntarily take a COVID-19 test within 48 hours of the end of the 10-day quarantine period (test to be administered between days 8 and 10). Students may obtain these tests at Legion Field (
) or at the University Health Center by calling 706-542-1162 (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.). Please DO NOT walk-in the University Health Center without an appointment. For emergencies and after-hours care, see
is the best method for monitoring these symptoms. If new symptoms occur, the individual must not come to campus and must seek further testing/evaluation.
If the test is positive at the end of the 10-day period, the individual must begin a 10-day isolation period from the date of the test.
How do I participate in surveillance testing if I have NO symptoms?
We strongly encourage you to take advantage of the expanded surveillance testing that is being offered from January 4 – 22: up to 1,500 free tests per day at Legion Field and pop-up locations. Testing at Legion Field can be scheduled at
. Walk-up appointments can usually be accommodated at Legion Field, and pop-up saliva testing does not require pre-registration. For planning purposes, precise sites and schedules for the pop-up clinics are published on the UHC’s website and its social media as they are secured:
Students who are having a hard time balancing the demands of class, work, and life in general should not feel alone; the combination of freedom and responsibility that comes with college (and especially upper-division courses) is really hard for a lot of people. It’s okay to seek professional help, and UGA has ramped up its counseling services significantly over the past few years. Take advantage of them at http://www.uhs.uga.edu/caps/. More broadly, ask for help and feel free to seek advice from us or others before you get in over your head. That said, asking for help is your responsibility. We cannot accommodate undiagnosed learning disabilities or other challenges as excuses for missing deadlines. The University of Georgia is committed to providing equal educational opportunities for qualified students with disabilities in accordance with state and federal laws including the American Disabilities Act. Help for disabled students is available from the Disability Resource Center. More information is available at www.dissvcs.uga.edu. If you have a particular issue that needs to be accommodated, please share it with the instructor as early as possible in the semester.
As a University of Georgia student, you have agreed to abide by the University’s academic honesty policy, “A Culture of Honesty,” and the Student Honor Code. All academic work must meet the standards described in “A Culture of Honesty” found here. Lack of knowledge of the academic honesty policy is not a reasonable explanation for a violation. Questions related to course assignments and the academic honesty policy should be directed to the instructor.
Students who train or use service animals should be aware of UGA policy. A FAQ is available at
Special events will be announced throughout the semester, and attending one and live-tweeting it will generally be good for one point on your final grade. Also, you can participate in research studies for one point of extra credit apiece, up to a maximum of three. Sign up through the Grady Research Participation Pool (