At the beginning of November, the Vice-Chancellor decided that teaching in the spring should be conducted in the previously announced format; campus-based teaching should primarily be conducted on campus, like in the autumn semester.
A few weeks later, at the end of November, the spread of the virus had increased and the Government, the Public Health Agency of Sweden and local authorities announced new stricter regulations. The University switched back to online teaching again on 19 November and will continue with online teaching in study period three in the spring semester, that is between 18 January and 28 March.
“We can now see that there is an increase in the spread of the virus in our region and in the nation, and this means that we need to do everything in our power to reduce the number of new COVID-19 cases,” Ylva Fältholm says. “We have a grave obligation to follow regulations and recommendations issued by the authorities. “
New decisions no later than 1 March
This decision applies to teaching during the first half of the spring term, for what is called study period three. A decision for study period four, running between 29 March until 6 June, will be taken no later than 1 March. Hopefully, more course components can be conducted on campus during the latter half of the spring term, provided that the spread of the virus has decreased.
”When I have been in contact with different units, I have understood that most of them had already made plans on the basis of these conditions. Everyone who follows daily updates in media from the Government and the Public Health Agency of Sweden has been able to draw the conclusion that there are no other choices than to operate online as far as possible right now,” Ylva Fältholm says.
Certain course components may have to be conducted on campus
From January until March, the same regulations as today will apply. Face-to-face meetings may need to be conducted on campus for the quality assurance of an examination or other components; a certain type of room or equipment may be required for an examination. A limited number of written hall examinations can be carried out on campus, but a decision by a head of faculty is required and current restrictions and recommendations to limit transmission of the infection must be followed.
No international exchanges
A decision regarding international exchanges based on agreements with partner higher education institutions has been taken. There will be no international exchanges during the spring semester. The decision concerns around 30 students from abroad who should have begun studying at University of Gävle and a handful of students who were supposed to go abroad to other higher education institutions.
Students who wanted an international exchange opportunity may have one later one, when more travelling is possible again.
International study programmes at University of Gävle, for example MBA programmes and the programme International social work, follow general recommendations stating that all teaching should be primarily online. This means that students required to pay fees, so-called “free movers,” will also have to prepare for online teaching.
University entrances will continue to be locked, but students can enter by using their HiG card and study on campus.
Below you will find a list of current decisions taken by the Vice-Chancellor. All apply until no later than 28 March, 2021
- All teaching should primarily be conducted online.
- Necessary face-to-face meetings on campus can be conducted, for example if a certain type of room or equipment is required, or for quality assurance of an examination. Heads of faculty make the decision.
- If a course component needs to be carried out on campus, everyone must follow recommendations about keeping a safe distance and other pieces of advice to ensure that we limit the spread of the virus
- A limited number of written hall examinations can be carried out on campus, if current restrictions and recommendations are followed. A decision by the head of faculty is required.
- After consultation with the head of faculty, examiners can decide to change examination formats to heed coronavirus-related restrictions.
- Central coordination of campus-based course components, aimed to avoid crowds on campus to limit the spread of COVID-19, will be carried out in consultation with heads of faculty.
- The Division of Educational Support can decide that a student belonging to a risk group requires an individual room for a written examination.
- International exchanges based on agreements with partner higher education institutions will not be conducted.