Learning Together

CUI Together

Preparing for Spring 2021

Resources for Students & Faculty

We look forward to our students, faculty, and staff returning to campus in January for the spring semester. We want to reassure our community that we take your health and well-being seriously during the ongoing pandemic. By following safety guidelines, we exhibit love and concern for each member of our community, and we model how to “love your neighbor.” We thank you in advance for your cooperation, and we pray for your continued safety and well-being.


Online Classes

All traditional undergraduate courses will be online for the first two weeks of Spring 2021 so that we can do surveillance testing of residential and commuter students before we move into dual mode. In week three, some science labs and some studio arts activities will move to in-person learning. When CUI is permitted, more courses will move to dual mode with some students in the classrooms and others engaging live online. Students who wish to complete their semester online may do so. Those who wish to attend their courses in-person will be welcomed to do that.

The schedule for classes will remain the same online as scheduled to be in-person. That is, a class that currently meets MWF from 8:30-9:20 am will keep that schedule. As is normal before any semester starts, some of the overall course offerings may change due to enrollment levels. If your schedule should be affected, you will be contacted by CUI and assisted in reworking your schedule.

One reason the course meeting schedules will remain the same online as in-person is because class sessions will mostly be synchronous (live virtual meetings) with the professors and students in attendance at the same time. Students and faculty have expressed their desire to be present with each other in real time in order to build relationships and a robust academic community. Lectures, questions, discussions, and group work benefit from live interaction. Students are expected to attend all synchronous sessions. Some class sessions will be asynchronous, meaning that the class does not meet at the scheduled time (e.g., Friday from 8:30-9:20 am), but instead students have an assignment to accomplish on their own or in groups by a set time. In asynchronous sessions, attendance can be taken based on timely completion of the assignment.

Students who live outside the contiguous United States (that is, outside of the 48 adjoining states), may ask their professors about accommodations based on time-zone differences. Professors might, for instance, record lectures, alter how a student engages in class discussion, or change the times when assignments are due. Those accommodations are to be worked out with professors directly as they know what the learning outcomes are for their courses and what modifications can be made to still achieve those outcomes.

Resources for Instructional Continuity

Dual Mode Courses

When we anticipate being cleared to start in-person, dual mode courses, details about that transition will be emailed to students several days in advance.

Dual Mode Class Rotations

Dual Mode Class Rotations

In dual mode classes, up to half of the enrolled students will be in the class with the other students engaging remotely in real time via integrated audio/visual technology in the classroom. For instance, with a course that meets on Tuesday and Thursday, one half of the students will attend in-person on Tuesday with the second half engaging in real time online. On Thursday, the second half of the class will attend in-person, with the first half of the students engaging online. The technology used in the classrooms will enable all students and professors to see, speak to, and hear each other. Students online will also be able to see the whiteboard in the classroom.

Safety in the Classroom

Safety in the Classroom

To maintain physical safety for all the students and professors in the classrooms, students and professors will wipe down the surface of their desks and chairs at the start of each class. Each room has disinfecting wipes installed in it for students to use. When in class, students and professors will be required to wear cloth face masks or face shields. Seats will also be stationed six feet apart. Professors also have a plexiglass shield to stand behind.

On Campus Safety

Some courses will not switch to dual mode. For instance, courses with small enrollments may be able to safely accommodate all students in a classroom at one time. Courses currently marked as "OL" (e.g., WRT 102-OL-1) will remain online the whole semester.

CUI recognizes that some students may need to take all their Spring 2021 courses in an online format. When we move to dual mode, students who need to complete their courses online may continue to do so. They simply need to tell their professors that they wish to stay online.

Student Technology Requirements for Dual Mode Courses

In order for all students to participate in this dual mode course format, the university will require that all incoming and returning students, both graduate and undergraduate students, have access to a computer or tablet. Below are frequently asked questions regarding the technical requirements for learning at Concordia. Blackboard refers to the learning management system where courses are delivered in various forms.

What are the basic computer requirements, including for screen readers, needed to study in the Blackboard learning management system?

Operating Systems

  • Windows 7 and newer
  • Mac OSX 10.6 and newer
  • *Chromebooks will support most functionality in Blackboard, but will not support the use of Respondus LockDown Browser and Monitor. Respondus may be required in some courses to take online quizzes, tests and exams.

Mobile Operating System Native App Support

  • iOS 7 and newer
  • Android 4.2 and newer

Computer Speed and Processor

  • Use a computer 5 years old or newer
  • 2GB of RAM
  • 2GHz processor

Internet Speed

  • Minimum of 2.5 Mbps assuming it is not being shared. If multiple users are on the same network, a larger bandwidth will be necessary.

Screen Readers

  • Use Firefox® and Jaws on a Windows® system
  • Use Safari® and Voice on a Mac system

Will I need a webcam and headset or earbuds?

Yes, most classes at Concordia will require students to interact with the professor and fellow students through live video — both a webcam (built-in or external) and headset or earbuds will be required. This is mainly to help develop a learning community based upon relationships, but also to facilitate virtual office hours for faculty and students.

Where can I find answers to general Blackboard questions?

Access the Blackboard Learn Help for Students support resources for answers to your questions. Your professor or the ITS Department can also assist you. In case you come across support material that says it is for a specific version of Blackboard, Concordia uses Blackboard Learn (Original), not Blackboard Ultra.

What internet browsers can be used to study in Blackboard?

It is recommended that you install multiple browsers on your computer. Blackboard supports the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Edge, Respondus Lockdown Browser, and Safari. However, in the event you are unable to access content in one browser, the quickest solution is often to try accessing it in a different browser. Please see the Blackboard Guide on browser support for details and version recommendations. You can access the Blackboard Browser Checker to run a check on the current browser you are using.

Will Blackboard work on my mobile device?

The Blackboard app is designed especially for students to view content and participate in courses. The current version of the app is available on iOS and Android mobile devices. Outside of the app, Blackboard pages can be accessed in any mobile browser, but they are not supported and may not function as expected.

Is Blackboard accessibility (508) compliant?

Yes, Blackboard has several accessibility features and fully supports multiple screen readers. Please see the Accessibility in Blackboard support page for more information. For the best Blackboard experience with your screen reader, use Firefox® and Jaws on a Windows® system. On a Mac® use Safari® and VoiceOver.

I need tech support - where can I get it?

Contact the ITS Department by sending an email to [email protected] or calling 949-214-3175.

How do I login to the Blackboard learning management system at Concordia for classes?

Blackboard can be accessed through My CUI. Your username is your E number and your password is the same one you use for your Eagles email account. If you have any trouble with your password, try resetting it by going to the ITS Password Manager site. If this does not work, contact ITS at 949-214-3175 or email at [email protected]. Your classes will be listed under the My Courses heading. Click on the title of your course to enter it.

Tech Support

Contact the ITS Department by sending an email to [email protected] or calling 949-214-3175.

Blackboard Support For Students

Blackboard Learn is CUI's learning management system where courses are delivered in various forms. Access the Blackboard Learn Help for Students support resources for answers to your questions. Your professor or the ITS Department can also assist you. Visit the ITS Blackboard FAQ website for responses to frequently asked questions about the Blackboard Learn system.

Use of Face Masks

Until further notice, face coverings must be worn in all public spaces outside the residence halls, especially where six feet of physical distance cannot be maintained. Current guidance from the California Department of Public Health requires that people use cloth face coverings outside of their immediate living space. Although our classrooms and other indoor spaces have been reconfigured to allow for physical distancing, we will require that students wear face coverings in the classroom for added protection for fellow classmates, faculty and staff.

Here is a list of spaces where students are required to wear face coverings:

  • Classrooms
  • Inside all buildings
  • Getting food in the cafeteria (not while eating)
  • In chapel
  • In student service areas
  • Outdoor events/gatherings where six feet of physical distance cannot be maintained

Face coverings are not required in most outdoor spaces, unless physical distance cannot be maintained. Presently, the state of California requires face masks to be worn outside the home, so students should remember to bring and wear face coverings while off campus, as well.

Students who cannot wear face coverings due to a diagnosed disability must email [email protected] with appropriate disability documentation from the treating specialist. Please contact the Disability and Learning Resource Center at [email protected] to obtain the guidelines for appropriate disability documentation.

Student Services

Offices that personally interface with students, such as the Registrar’s Office, Academic Advising, Campus Safety, and Financial Aid, will employ various safety measures to maintain physical distance and reduce contact. These include plexiglass shields between staff and students, making appointments in advance online instead of waiting in groups, and virtual meetings.

Co-Curricular Activities

Students involved in co-curriculars with group practice, performances, and/or competitions (such as music, theatre, athletics, and forensics), will receive specific participation and safety information in the coming weeks. Safety guidelines formulated by athletics conferences, professional associations, and local and national agencies inform how these group activities are being pursued.

Spiritual Life on Campus

Spiritual life remains an important part of our campus life and community. God blesses us through his ministry even in challenging times. We encourage every member of our community to use the wonderful resources of our campus ministry.


M, Tu, Th, F (10:30-11:00 am) - Virtual

Daily chapel is purposefully designed to serve everyone in our CUI community. It is our hope that students, no matter what their background, can join others during the week at these chapel experiences.

This year our chapels will follow a pattern which Martin Luther suggested comprises the proper way to study theology. In Latin, the terms are: oratio, meditatio, and tentatio. We will adapt these slightly to this sequence:

  • Monday Chapel
    We begin the week by meditating on God’s Word to us (meditatio). The focus most of this semester will be going verse by verse through Paul’s letter to the Philippians. Our theme passage encourages us, even in uncertain times, to "shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life" (Philippians 2:15b-16).
  • Tuesday Chapel
    Prayer (oratio) is our response based upon a Psalm related to the Philippians reading. After an overview of the Psalm, we will pray it together, followed by 5 minutes for journaling or private/small group prayer. Our theme verses are Philippians 4:6-7: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
  • Thursday Chapel
    Tentatio comprises spiritual struggle. A brief devotion based upon Monday’s reading from Philippians will lead to life application questions to be discussed in small groups (10 minutes). Our theme verse is Philippians 1:29 For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake.
  • Friday Chapel
    We added imitatio to wrap up the week with personal testimonies of faith from various members of CUI’s community. The theme verse is Philippians 3:17 where Paul writes, "Join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us” (Philippians 3:17). Of course, behind this appeal is 1 Corinthians 11:1, "Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ."

Pastoral Care will continue without interruption and will follow safety protocols. We are here to assist you.

Small Groups and Bible Studies can be held with a limit of ten participants in each group. Physical distancing will be observed.

Mission Trips are currently on hold for safety reasons. Trips and service opportunities will be reviewed on an individual basis as restrictions begin to lift.

Back to top