The Coming Storm: Snow, Emails, and Other Forces

We’re not too deep into the semester, but you may already be buried.

Maybe you’re under a pile of emails—or voicemails, or requests for appointments outside your office hours. Things can get overwhelming. Hopefully you’ve already established some guidelines for your students in terms of how and when you want them to communicate with you outside of class; if not, it’s probably time to establish them now. We discuss this and other issues on the Teaching Commons Communication and Contact page.

One hurdle this time of year is the possibility of snow and the issue of instructional continuity. With January almost behind us, it can be tempting to think we’re done with winter. But we’re still in the season of extremely unpredictable weather here in Washington, D.C., and there’s always a decent chance of a city-burying storm—or, in D.C., even just a couple of inches of snow—that will close the campus down. At Georgetown, the expectation is that we’ll keep the learning going even when classrooms are closed and you’re unable to meet in person. Both the Instructional Continuity and Tools pages provide a plethora of ideas on ways to stay in touch when it’s not possible to get to campus.

As always, reach out to us if there’s anything we can do to help!


This spring, we’re using the CNDLS blog to highlight the Teaching Commons, a compilation of resources and case studies designed to help faculty revitalize their courses and gain insights into practical issues in pedagogy at Georgetown. As a living resource, the site evolves to encompass new scholarship in teaching and learning, as well as technological innovations that are changing and enhancing the current teaching landscape. To help you explore all that the Commons has to offer, we’re showcasing tools and other information on a semi-weekly basis, guiding you through the semester in real time. Missed the other posts? Check out our takes on crafting a syllabus, starting the semester, leading discussions, evaluating learningdesigning assignments, and active learning, then hear from fellow faculty in our interview highlights.