COVID-19 information and resources for USC Annenberg

This page is updated frequently — please check back often.

Visit the USC Coronavirus website for additional information, including university-wide FAQs for students, faculty and staff.


Facilities

Are USC Annenberg’s facilities — Wallis Annenberg Hall (ANN), Annenberg School of Communication (ASC) building and Kerckhoff Hall (KER) — open at this time?

USC has always been proud of being open and accessible to all, but during this pandemic period we must do everything we can to ensure social distancing, adjust to reduced staffing levels, and be consistent with the State of California orders now in place. This means reducing public access to campus.

Until further notice, buildings on the University Park campus — including Wallis Annenberg Hall (ANN), the Annenberg School for Communication (ASC) building and Kerckhoff Hall (KER) — will remain locked, with access only to authorized faculty and staff with physical keys or key cards. Any special access requests must be made with Facilities Manager Ray Barkley at barkley@usc.edu or (213) 458-4307. Keep in mind that while key and key-card access are still available for ANN, ASC and KER, we emphasize the need to exercise social distancing and hygiene as recommended in all locations.

Are there any staff members available in Wallis Annenberg Hall (ANN) at this time?

Members of the TechOps team will be staffing ANN Monday-Friday 8 a.m.–4 p.m. to provide facilities and on-site information technology and equipment support. The Media Center support staff team will be available on an as-needed basis to accommodate essential curriculum requests. In addition, the Dean’s Office is fully operational online. In the absence of call forwarding, the dean’s office is checking the main office line on an hourly basis.

Events

Is USC Annenberg still hosting events at this time?

With the most recent national and local guidance from health and government agencies, all university-sponsored on- and off-campus events have been canceled or postponed through at least May 1. As a result, USC Annenberg is not accepting any event reservation requests until further notice.

As USC works to protect our community and slow the potential transmission of COVID-19, will Commencement be affected?

USC has decided to postpone but not eliminate all in-person Commencement 2020 activities. You are encouraged to check the university’s Commencement 2020 website for forthcoming details.

Students

How do I connect with my academic advisor?

Alternate methods of advising appointments are available for undergraduate and graduate students via email and Zoom. Please regularly check and thoroughly read all emails sent by your academic advisor that will provide detailed information and instructions about the advising process and career development.

How is USC Annenberg providing tech support for students learning remotely through the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester?

USC Annenberg’s Digital Lounge and Media Center Technologies teams are providing remote support, including live Zoom virtual help desks for students to video chat with technical staff. Using video chat and screen sharing, they will be able to explain technical issues and walk you through software support.

The Digital Lounge’s Zoom virtual help desk is monitored by staff members as follows:

  • Monday–Thursday: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Friday: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

The Media Center’s tech team is providing two Zoom virtual help desks — one for video and one for audio. These are monitored by staff members as follows:

  • Monday–Thursday: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. 
  • Friday: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

How will USC Libraries handle book due dates and what services are they providing while USC’s campus buildings are closed?

Additional details are available on the USC Libraries’ COVID-19 operations page.

Communication doctoral student dissertations and qualifying exams

How will communication doctoral students defend their dissertations if COVID-19 affects their ability to meet with their dissertation committees in person?

Remote participation in a dissertation or thesis defense is always an option for a limited number of committee members. With the approval of the student, committee chair, and the dean of the school, the defense can be conducted entirely through Zoom or other video conferencing tool. The standard rules apply to the defense. This means that all committee members must be part of the same defense “meeting,” whether they are on campus or remote. 

How can communication doctoral students submit their dissertations if COVID-19 affects their ability to function on campus?

Dissertation checklists and manuscripts are submitted electronically via Thesis Center and are not affected by the location of the student.

How can communication doctoral students take the oral portion of their qualifying exams if COVID-19 affects their ability to meet with their exam committees?

Remote participation in the oral portion of a qualifying exam is always an option for a limited number of committee members.  With the approval of the student, committee chair, and the dean of the school, the defense can be conducted entirely through Zoom or other video conferencing tool. The standard rules apply to the exam. This means that all committee members must be part of the same exam “meeting,” whether they are on campus or remote. 

How can communication doctoral students’ advisors submit academic petitions on their behalf to the Graduate School if COVID-19 affects the university’s functions on campus?

Petitions are submitted by advisors online and are not affected by the location of the student or the advisor.

Faculty and Staff

Where can USC Annenberg instructors find guidance on best practices for online teaching and learning?

USC Annenberg’s Center for Excellence in Teaching faculty fellows have created this Online Teaching and Learning Resources page to help instructors adjust their courses to meet student needs and learning objectives. The page is loaded with instructional tips, additional resources (i.e. VoiceThread) and frequently asked questions.

We encourage you to share your questions and tips with the school directors and Neil Teixeria at teixeira@usc.edu so we can continue to collect them and update our resources page.

How is USC Annenberg providing tech support for instructors and staff teaching and working remotely through the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester?

USC Annenberg’s TechOps team is providing remote support, including a live Zoom virtual help desk for faculty and staff to video chat with technical staff. Using video chat and screen sharing, they will be able to explain technical issues and walk you through software support.

The TechOps’ Zoom virtual help desk is monitored by staff members as follows:

  • Monday–Thursday: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Friday: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Keep in mind that you should use this Zoom link for immediate support needs only. If your request does not need to be resolved immediately, you are encouraged to email asctech@usc.edu. Members of the TechOps team are also available to provide tech support Monday–Thursday between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. and Friday between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. at (213) 740-5297 or asctech@usc.edu.

How will USC Libraries handle book due dates and what services are they providing while USC’s campus buildings are closed?

Additional details are available on the USC Libraries’ COVID-19 operations page.