MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University will shift to online classes for most students for the rest of the spring semester because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The WVU Board of Governors recommended the action at an emergency meeting on Wednesday, with the board requiring most classes to move online and all residence halls and university apartments to close until further notice.

Online classes are set to begin March 30.

“We are doing everything we can to keep the campus and the community safe and avoid a congregation of people, students and faculty,” said Maryanne Reed, university provost and vice president of academic affairs.

Reed also said the academic calendar will not change with the exception of possibly starting final exams earlier than scheduled. She noted the changes put the semester in jeopardy.

Some medical classes will continue in-person, although in a lab or alternative setting.

Rob Alsop, the vice president of strategic initiatives, said officials are working on credits for students who have already paid for campus housing and meals. He said provisions will be made for the small group of students that remained on campus during spring break.

“We are going to secure our residence halls, students do not need to return to campus immediately to clean the items out of the rooms,” he said. “We’ll keep our facilities secure and students will have an opportunity at a later time to come to campus.”

Students are advised to not travel back to the university until officials approve clearance. All campus buildings will be closed to the public.

The future of the spring commencement was not announced.