Information for Students and Families

Student moving in to residence hall

We are excited to welcome our returning and new students to campus this spring. If you and your family are new to CMU, know that we are committed to meeting the high standard of support and service that you expect as you make this important academic and social transition.

If you plan to begin at CMU after the spring 2021 semester, please visit our Undergraduate Admissions page.

Spring 2021 Semester Calendar

Icon: Calendar

The spring 2021 semester begins Jan. 11 and ends with exams May 3-7.

  • The first week of classes, Jan. 11-15, will be fully online.
  • Courses shift to meet in person, online or in HyFlex — beginning the week of Jan. 18. Find the calendar here.

Instead of a weeklong spring break, five "wellness days" of no classes have been added to the calendar over the course of the semester. The spring wellness days, which also include replacements for the traditional Gentle Thursday and Friday before exams, will be held:

  • Thursday, Feb. 4
  • Monday, Feb. 22
  • Wednesday, March 10
  • Tuesday, March 23
  • Friday, April 2
  • Wednesday, April 7
  • Friday, April 30

These dates are intended to provide time away from homework, class activities and meetings and other stressors, so students and faculty can enjoy a much-needed and well-deserved break.


  • Travel for university purposes remains suspended until further notice, unless it is deemed essential by the appropriate division vice president.
  • Travel permissions will follow federal and state restrictions and the advice of CMU Health, as informed by recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, particularly when travel includes visiting any identified high-risk location.
  • Domestic travel: The traveler should be prepared to self-quarantine for 10 days after return.
  • International travel: The traveler must self-quarantine for 10 days after return.
  • Travelers are encouraged to get tested before and after traveling.
  • Please review this guidance from the CDC for more information on domestic and international travel.

If you traveled during the winter break, please review this travel guidance from the CDC prior to returning to CMU:

Testing before and after travel can reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. Testing does not eliminate all risk, but when paired with a period of staying at home and precautions like wearing masks and social distancing, it can make travel safer by reducing spread on planes, in airports, and at travelers’ destinations.

If you participated in higher-risk activities during your travel, please do the following after travel:

  • Get tested 3-5 days after travel AND stay home for 7 days after travel before returning to CMU.
  • Even if you test negative, stay home for the full 7 days.
  • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • If you don’t get tested, it’s safest to stay home for 10 days after travel.
  • Avoid being around people who are at increased risk for severe illness for 14 days, whether you get tested or not.
  • Always follow state and local recommendations or requirements related to travel.

Types of Classes Available this Spring

CMU is continuing its HyFlex course model for the spring semester. HyFlex allows students to attend in-person classes or participate in the live class through a synchronous online session. Use of HyFlex could mean, for example, that some students attend class in person one day and remotely the next class session based on direction from their instructor. Or a student could choose to participate in class by sitting in a classroom on campus, or to attend that same class, at the same time, remotely from another location.

Most HyFlex course sections plan to offer the opportunity to attend in person from 50% to 100% of the time. These variations are based on classroom space, course capacity and course needs.

This spring, we are offering four different educational delivery modes:

  • Online synchronous: Courses are fully online but require students and faculty to be online during specific meeting days/times (similar to a Zoom meeting).
  • Online asynchronous: Courses are fully online with no specific meeting days/times. Students do not have to meet for the online class at a certain time. Instead, the instructor posts assignments in an online learning portal, and students read instructions posted, like reading certain chapters or articles. Students might also then be asked to complete assignments by a certain deadline.
  • HyFlex: Courses are offered with synchronous online and in-person options for students. Students may sit in the actual classroom or watch the class from their computer anywhere they choose. Students are strongly recommended to attend in the classroom whenever possible. Hyflex is a synchronous option, meaning students not in the actual classroom must watch the live class on a computer device as it occurs. The class is essentially streaming live (again, think something similar to a Zoom meeting).
  • Hybrid: Courses have some face-to-face time and a mixture of synchronous and/or asynchronous meetings. Some parts of the course require all students to be face to face for class meetings, while other meetings are held either by synchronous online instruction (for example, an instructor teaches from home or an office and speaks to students live through online audio or video conferencing, like a Zoom meeting), or the students would have online asynchronous instruction.

Any student with a COVID-19 diagnosis or symptoms will access classes remotely.

Please note: Some courses may require students to be present in person for hands-on work or use of specialized equipment. Students will receive information from their instructors about how HyFlex will be used in each of their courses as the semester begins.

Study Abroad

Spring and Summer 2021 Study Abroad programs are canceled. Decisions on Fall 2021 Study Abroad programs will be announced at a later date. Students with questions or concerns regarding Study Abroad should contact the Office of Global Engagement at or 989-774-4308.

Residence Hall and University Apartments: Move-in and Campus Dining

In a Dec. 18 press conference, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services asked colleges and universities to postpone their return to campus and in-person learning plans until around Jan. 16, 2020.

Based on this updated order, here are some important dates to note:

  • CMU residence halls will reopen at 9 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 15.
  • Students will need a move-in appointment to arrive between 9 a.m. on Jan. 15 and 6 p.m. on Jan. 17.
  • Look for an email on Jan. 5 with instructions on how to sign up for a move-in appointment.

The East community residence halls will continue to be open for students who registered to be on campus during the break. In addition, Northwest, Kewadin and Graduate Housing remain open for residents.

Students may return to the residence halls on Saturday, Jan. 9 if they meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Athletes required to be on campus by their coach.
  • Students experiencing food or housing insecurity.
  • Students needing access to stable internet or other academic support/resources.
  • Students required to be on campus for academic reasons such as labs, clinicals, etc.
  • International students and out-of-state students with airline tickets that cannot be changed.
  • CMU student employees who are asked and willing to work.

Students not returning for spring 2021 who need to check out of their living unit will need to schedule an appointment with their Residence Hall Director/Residence Director beginning Jan. 9.

Online Classes and Support

Students use the online platform Blackboard for online and in-person classes to access communication from their instructor, assignments and other course documents.

Whether a course is HyFlex, hybrid, face to face or online, instructors want students to succeed. The video "How to Succeed in Your Online Class" gives practical tips for success.

Student success is at the center of everything we do. If your learning has been challenging since the pandemic began, we have support that may make it easier, such as advising, tutoring, writing and mathematics centers and more. Contact Student Disability Services to register for academic accommodations.

Quiet Classroom Spaces

Students who need a quiet space on campus to study or participate in an online class can find a list of available classrooms on this website. Please note the times available for each classroom and the rules outlined for use of these spaces.

International Students

The Office of Global Engagement has created a webpage with frequently asked questions for international students. New or continuing international students with questions or concerns should contact the Office of Global Engagement.

Student Payments

Enrollment Reservation Deposit

Your $175 enrollment reservation deposit can be paid immediately or deferred until Feb. 1, 2021. Register for New Student Orientation and pay or request to defer your deposit here.

Housing and Tuition Payments

Housing and tuition will be posted to your account in December 2020 for spring 2021. We offer payment plans. Otherwise, your payment for housing and tuition not covered by student loans or financial aid will be due Feb. 1.

Payment Help

If your financial situation has changed significantly, please reach out to Student Account Services and University Billing by emailing or calling 989-774-3618.

Accepting Applications for Spring and Fall 2021

There's still time to apply to join us for the spring or fall 2021 semesters as a freshman or transfer student. Explore the process on our Undergraduate Admissions page. New student orientation and class registration is an online experience. Housing applications are still being accepted, and each residence hall will be at reduced density for the health and safety of our students.