Fall 2021 College Curriculum Delivery Status
WesternU Colleges follow CRT guidance and in addition establish COVID-19 safety protocols and curriculum delivery specific to their programs. The College-level protocols and curriculum delivery vary from College to College because program and professional requirements vary, as do the facilities available for in-person activities. The descriptions below offer some explanation of the variations dictated by the differing needs for the best education possible under pandemic conditions.
The College of Dental Medicine continues focusing on the success of the 21st century learner through use of active learning environments, high-fidelity treatment simulation and authentic patient care settings. The didactic instruction involves a blend of in-person and remote delivery of content using an adaptive learning platform, content reinforcement sessions, media rich presentations and a formative assessment system. Foundational pre-clinical skills are developed by replicating patient care processes in a simulated environment. The College’s clinical education engages students in comprehensive patient care systems both on-campus and in community-based settings.
The CGN faculty facilitate learning through a hybrid curriculum that varies in each program. The Master of Science in Nursing Entry (MSNE) program is composed of both on campus, face-to- face learning in both the classroom and the simulation center, as well as virtual interactive experiences. The FNP Master’s Program and FNP Certificate students and the Emergency Nurse Practitioner (ENP) students learn through virtual sessions and come to campus for in-person clinical skills training. All three programs, MSNE, FNP and ENP, attend clinical in-person in a variety of settings including the hospital, clinic, urgent care, and the larger community. The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) students and the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) students study through virtual interactive learning environments and practice competencies in clinical sites with faculty supervision.
- Physician Assistant Education: Cohort 2022: Currently on clinical rotation assignments, will return on-campus for Senior Seminar once a month beginning in September. Cohort 2023: Currently on campus 100% for lectures and labs.
- Physical Therapy Education: Cohort 2022: Currently on clinical rotation assignments, will return to on campus didactic lectures on Monday, August 23, 2021. Cohort 2023 & 2024: Hybrid Schedule – content dependent. Online for non-clinical skills curriculum. On campus lectures and lab for clinical skills curriculum.
- Physical Therapy Education – Post Professional: Completely online program.
- Master of Science in Medical Science (MSMS): Cohort 2022: Hybrid Schedule – content dependent.
- Master of Science in Health Sciences (MSHS): Completely online program.
- Occupational Therapy Education: Starting Fall 2022
- Physical Therapy Education: Cohort 2024: Currently on campus 100% for lectures and lab
The College of Optometry has on-campus, in-person instruction in the classroom setting for large group didactic learning, mid-sized group instruction in pre-clinical skills and laboratories, and small group clinical education and patient care services in years 1 – 3 of its curricula. Students and faculty members are also participating in clinical education and patient care services off-campus in affiliated clinical sites and community partner sites in years 1 – 4 of its curricula.
CPM continues to deliver its pre-clinical curriculum in years one and two in a hybrid model. Didactic lectures are delivered online, along with distribution of assignments, that are then followed by in-person events designed to assess, enhance, and affirm student understanding. Hands-on, in-person workshops are conducted to correspond with online learning. Year three students are in hospital rotations throughout Southern California and participate in didactic learning one-half day weekly throughout the academic year. Fourth-year students participate in hospital rotations around the country and return to campus in December for board review and residency interview preparation. These experiences can be converted to virtual ones. During the 2020 academic year, substitute online learning events were developed that allowed our students to continue their education when hospitals cancelled rotations. This allowed us to graduate the class without interruption and with approval of our accrediting agency.
The CVM has adopted a responsive posture to the changing environment created by the pandemic and is implementing a hybrid delivery of the curriculum that is uniquely specific to each class cohort. Curricular delivery is adjusted accordingly in response to analysis of surveillance data (vaccination rates, diagnostic testing results, infection indices, and new CRT and CDC guidelines). Present curriculum delivery structure by class cohort: DVM 2022 are in off-campus clinical rotations. DVM 2023 are in online courses for the first eight weeks of the semester. Off-campus clinical activities are planned for the remainder of the year. DVM 2024 and 2025 are in a hybrid curriculum.
COMP and COMP-Northwest will continue to deliver a hybrid curriculum composed of virtual didactic lectures and in person clinical skills training integrated throughout the first two Pre-clinical Years. The third and fourth Clinical Years will be in person and in compliance with hospital and clinical site COVID Protocols. We will deliver a virtual overlay curriculum for any third or fourth-year student whose clinical site is canceled due to COVID to prevent delays in on-time graduation.
The College of Pharmacy is primarily delivering the curriculum in-person to first, second, and third- year students. Some of the lectures in a few courses are being delivered via zoom or with pre-recorded lectures at the discretion of the course facilitator and lecturer. Fourth-year clinical rotations are in person following COVID protocols at the rotation site. Students who test positive can attend class via zoom or have access to the recorded lecture in consultation with the course facilitator.
GCBS is committed to the safe and effective education of our students. Given the outstanding vaccination rates among our students, faculty, and staff, we are able to safely return to the classroom and laboratory. As such, unless LA County or the WesternU CRT determines differently, all students should be in the classroom for all didactics and be in the lab, as requested by their research mentor. Special thanks to all faculty, staff, and students for following safety protocols to keep ourselves and our entire campus as safe as possible. Enjoy the weekend.