Over the past year and a half, many faculty members have adjusted their coursework to help students make sense of the world by looking at the Covid-19 crisis through a particular lens. History professors dove into past pandemics to help understand how this one might unfold. Scientists and public-policy experts worked with students to analyze public-health data and government responses. Sometimes their lessons spanned a class or two. Other times they created entirely new courses in a matter of weeks.
Now that the pandemic has entered another academic year, that work is expanding on many campuses in new and different ways. One innovative project came across my desk the other week: the Pandemic Teaching Initiative at Northeastern University, in Massachusetts.