Last December, the Vice-Chancellor took a policy decision that campus-based courses and programmes would mainly be taught on campus during the spring semester. However, due to an increase in the spread of infection in late December and early January, the Public Health Agency and the government issued new recommendations. For this reason, we needed to use online teaching alternatives in certain cases, for example.
However, the Prime Minister has now announced that it is "time to open up Sweden again." Higher education institutions will therefore return to campus teaching.
Courses and programmes will be taught as originally announced
For students, this means that programmes, courses, and examinations will be carried out in the form of distribution stated in the syllabus that you applied to. For example, if you applied to a campus-based programme, teaching, laboratory work and other teaching activities will now be carried out on campus. This applies to written examinations as well; they will now be carried out on campus and invigilators will no longer use Zoom. In distance learning courses, planned "on-campus days" and written examinations on campus will be carried out on campus as intended.
“This is very pleasing news from the authorities,” says Vice-Chancellor Ylva Fältholm. “Now, we can begin a gradual return to ‘normal’ operations at the University after two years of pandemic. We are very pleased that all our students can come back to campus! At the same time, it is important to remind ourselves that the spread of infection is not over. It is still important to be vaccinated and to stay at home if you have symptoms of an infection.”
The return must be completed no later than 28 March
A gradual return to on-campus teaching means that teachers and course coordinators now must make plans for this return. By 28 March, when study period four will begin, teaching must be carried out in the way originally announced for each programme or course.
“Now, we can stop making pandemic-related adjustments to teaching activities, which have had to do at the start of the spring semester,” Ylva Fältholm says.
The University will open up for public gatherings and conferences on campus
When study period four begins on 28 March, it will also be possible to hold public gatherings and conferences on campus, without any restrictions. This means that labour market days for students can be organised, which is important to students.
"Of course, we hope that this will mean the end of restrictions, recommendations, and adaptions of our working methods due to the pandemic," says Maria Strand, chair of the coordination committee for pandemic-related measures at University of Gävle. “Now, we can start planning for a return to teaching and working on campus. However, we should be proud and pleased with the development of our digital working methods. These are lessons that we can benefit from even after the pandemic. All our students should also feel proud; they have been flexible and have kept working hard with their studies even when faced with swift changes on several occasions during the pandemic.”
The most important recommendations for individuals in Sweden remain
- Get vaccinated against COVID-19.
- Stay at home and avoid close contact with others when you suspect that you have COVID-19.
- Unvaccinated people should still keep a safe distance from others and avoid crowds indoors
Students who have questions should contact their teacher or course coordinator or firstname.lastname@example.org
More information from the Public Health Agency:
De flesta åtgärder mot covid-19 upphör den 9 februari