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Biology Majors Update 3.16.2020

Dear Biology Majors,

As you know, we are in a National Emergency, one like no other within our lifetimes.  To keep the Coronavirus from spreading rapidly and overwhelming our health care systems, the Federal Government is recommending that large public gatherings are avoided and that social distance is maintained.  The University of Mississippi is doing its part by canceling face to face classes and laboratories, encouraging students to stay home.  Yet we value your education.   We know that many of our majors will become key players in understanding, fighting, and avoiding future emergent diseases, and other global biological challenges.  We are dedicated to your future.

Courses:   Courses will resume starting Monday, March 23rd, in a remote learning format.  Your Biology Course Instructor may have already reached out explaining how the course will be handled.  Please be patient as changing a course format quickly, and all that entails, is difficult and there are many challenges your instructor is working to overcome.    Many courses will be delivered in what is known as an asynchronous manner, which means lectures will be recorded and posted for you to view at your convenience. Questions can still be asked and addressed through Blackboard, or other means as indicated by your instructor.   Some courses that rely on in-class discussion, may be delivered in a synchronous manner, meaning everyone logs on to an online meeting space, such as Zoom (see below), at a specific time.   Please check Blackboard and monitor your email regularly for instructions.   Laboratories are also seeking additional and creative ways for achieving their learning objectives.  For most labs, you can expect online videos and tutorials.

Academic Advising: Advising for summer and fall of 2020 has begun.   Freshman will continue to be advised through the Academic Advising Unit in the Center Student Success and First-Year Experience (CSSFYE); please expect information directly from them.  Sophomore, Junior and Senior Biology majors will continue to be advised by your assigned Biology Faculty Advisor, however, these advising sessions will no longer be held face-to-face.   Please expect an email from your advisor by Thursday, March 19th explaining how they will contact you for advising.  These advising sessions may occur through email, phone call, or perhaps Zoom meetings, depending on student needs.   Please monitor your emails regularly for instructions.

Registration for summer and fall 2020 courses will begin on March 30th, 2020.  Please check your registration window in your myOleMiss.  Remember all holds must be lifted prior to registration.

Zoom is an online video communication platform that enables meetings of people from remote sites (  It is easy to use, and there are free aps available from the Apple Store and Google Play Store.

Zoom Cloud Meetings app in the Apple Store:

or in Google Play Store:


What you need to do during this period:

1) Use good health practices, maintain social distance.

2)  Check your email regularly, several times a day.

3)  Check the University’s COVID-19 response page frequently for updates and   directions:

4) Continue with your education and follow up with your academic advisor.

5) If you cannot reach an advisor or instructor, please email the Biology office at and explain the circumstances. We will help resolve the problem.   Please be patient and allow at least 24 hours for a reply from the department or your instructor.


Keep calm, be healthy and keep learning,

Gregg Roman, Ph.D.

Professor and Chair of Biology

The University of Mississippi

Department of Biology

P.O. Box 1848

214 Shoemaker Hall

University, MS 38677-1848