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Penn State Launches One-Question Fall Semester Survey For Students

Once again, Penn State is asking for help planning the fall semester.

The university is gradually sending LionPATH survey invitations to students via email. Each questionnaire takes approximately two to three minutes to complete and asks just one question: “Do you plan to attend classes at a Penn State campus in-person in the Fall semester?”

At this time, it’s unclear exactly how Penn State plans to use survey results. According to the questionnaire’s vague introduction, administrators will consider them when making additional decisions relating to the semester this summer.

The survey launched after many students began seeing their fall semester courses move online, move to Zoom, or take on an unprecedented hybrid schedule that mixes in-person and remote learning. After some students reported all their classes would be held virtually, it’s no surprise some are considering not returning to campus this fall.

“[Determining how classes will be held] will take a few weeks, as we are examining the best mix of in-class, remote and online instruction that can be achieved,” Penn State spokesperson Lisa Powers said. “We are considering many factors, from room availability, class size and physical distancing capabilities, to faculty and student health and safety considerations.”

Earlier this month, Penn State announced it would officially return to campus this fall amid the coronavirus pandemic. Plans were met with criticism from students and faculty alike, the latter of whom believe a hasty return puts professors at risk.

Before Penn State made its fall semester plans official, it released a similar survey to students back in May. The questionnaire asked students how they’d feel returning, what safety precautions they’d be willing to follow, and more.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt proudly served as Onward State’s managing editor for two years until graduating from Penn State with distinction in May 2022. Now, he’s off in the real world doing real things. Send him an email ([email protected]) or follow him on Twitter (@mattdisanto_) to stay in touch.

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