Last Updated: April 20, 2020

As members of the Politics Department are well aware, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in unprecedented and widespread disruption to normal operations within the department and throughout the University. This page is intended to provide information and updates that are specific to the Politics Department. University-wide guidance can be found on the University's COVID-19 Coronavirus Information page.

Remote Work

In compliance with Gov. Murphy's "stay at home" order, all members of the department, including faculty, students, visitors, researchers and staff, MUST work from home.

Department Office

The Politics main office will be closed and all staff will be working remotely, with the exception that IT manager, Jeffrey Kontio, may sometimes need to work in the office to provide IT support. All staff can be reached by email or their office phone, as calls are being routed to them while working remotely.


The Department is working with University mail services to arrange for mail and packages to be delivered, hopefully once a week. Department members should not have personal packages sent to the office, and should have important mail re-routed to their home address.

Payroll Checks

Those who receive a paper paycheck will receive it at their home/local mailing address, not in their department mailbox. If you receive a paper paycheck you are encouraged to 1) update your home/local mailing address in HR Service (TigerHub for graduate students) and 2) sign up for direct deposit, also through HR Self Service or TigerHub. Those who are already paid by direct deposit will continue to be paid as usual.


In accordance with University directives all Politics courses will shift to virtual instruction effective March 23. Students should direct any course-specific questions or concerns to their instructors. Politics staff are available to assist faculty and preceptors as needed.


All department events for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year have been canceled, with the exception of graduate research seminars, which are being held virtually, and the Class Day reception, which will also be held virtually. The date and time of the virtual Class Day reception has yet to be determined. An invitation will be circulated to members of the Class of 2021 and faculty. 

Faculty Meetings

Faculty meetings will be held remotely using Zoom. Faculty will receive an updated faculty meeting schedule for the remainder of the academic year with links to Zoom. These Zoom meetings will be password-protected.

Graduate Program

Graduate Research Seminars

Like all other courses, graduate research seminars will also be held remotely. Every Friday department faculty and graduate students will continue to receive a weekly listing of the upcoming week's schedule, including links to Zoom meetings for each subfield's seminar. Papers will continue to be distributed through subfield-specific listservs. If you would like to be added to the listserv for any of these seminars please contact Rachel Mariman (

Graduate Recruitment Visit

The admitted PhD student visit, scheduled for March 30-31, is being moved to a virtual format. Individual meetings between faculty and admitted students will be held remotely via Zoom. Group sessions will also be held using Zoom, and accompanied by group chat using Microsoft Teams. Faculty will receive the overall event schedule, as well as their schedule of individual meetings, during the week of March 23.

Undergraduate Program

Independent Work

New deadlines:
The senior thesis deadline has been pushed back to Wednesday, April 22. The junior paper draft deadline has been extended to Friday, April 10 and the final version of the junior paper is now due on Tuesday, May 12. Independent work advisers are available to advise students remotely.

The senior thesis poster session has been cancelled. The new deadline to submit the thesis poster is Wednesday, May 6.  The presentation component of this requirement has been waived and the grading basis for the poster itself will now be on a P/D/F basis only. See this webpage for more information.

Revisions have been made to our Important Dates to reflect these new deadlines. These new deadlines are all consistent with the new Dean of College guidelines.

Optional P/D/F Grading Basis for Senior Thesis and Junior Paper:
Click here for more information on grading changes for Spring 2020 independent work.

Students who opt for P/D/F grading on the senior thesis or junior paper should view how the Honors calculation will be treated for them.

Sophomore Sign-In

All advising for sophomore sign-in to the Politics Department in the Spring 2020 will be handled remotely. Visit this page for more information.


All University Spring 2020 courses will feature a P/D/F option, although it is possible for instructors to choose mandatory P/D/F. 

For Politics concentrators, departmental courses may now be taken on a P/D/F basis (Spring 2020 only). Politics courses taken on a P/D/F basis in Spring 2020 will also count as prerequisites for prospective Politics concentrators in the Class of 2022 and 2023, provided the student receives a passing grade.