I know there is a lot of concern over the impact of coronavirus on our University community, for both staff and students, and with this being a rapidly changing situation it is important to get the latest information to you. There are some developments in our approach I would like you to be aware of.
We do now have our first confirmed case at the University. This is not a surprise given the rapid spread of the virus. In practice, since little testing is now being carried out, we are unlikely to know for certain how many cases we have in the future, but the advice to staff and students remains the same; to continue following guidance from Public Health Wales.
Following on from our email of Friday, we have taken the decision that all face-to-face teaching is being suspended at the end of the day today. We will be moving to online teaching from Monday March 23 – in practice some teaching may be delivered online earlier than this date, and academics will make individual arrangements with their students as appropriate. We have said all along that we will continue to review things and given events over the weekend, we feel it is sensible to bring forward our plans to stop face-to-face teaching, which will cover the vast majority of subjects and classes. This decision encompasses the suspension of face-to-face supervision, assessment and progression for postgraduate research students. All supervision, assessment and progression (including Viva examinations, thesis submission and confirmation of candidature) will take place online from now until Friday 1st May.
The situation for medical and nursing students is different and for all courses leading to a professional registration in the Medical School or the College of Human and Health Sciences, students have been advised to wait for further information from their School or College.
Forthcoming assessment is also highly likely to take different forms than unseen written examinations. We are reviewing how we will deal with this, as we know this is understandably a major concern for our students and also our staff. We are currently looking at alternative arrangements for exams and will be updating you within the next 48 hours.
The University remains open, and the situation is constantly under review. We will update you as soon as we can with any new information with regards to any impact on services.
If you are already self-isolating, in either University or private student accommodation, you should continue to follow the Public Health Wales guidance and contact us via email at email@example.com and let us know, we will then contact you.
I’d like to finish by thanking all of our student community for their patience and understanding at this challenging time, please be reassured that your health and wellbeing are our highest priority, along with ensuring you are able to continue with your studies. Our Senior Management Team and key staff are meeting every day, and we will be issuing regular updates to staff and students. Please continue to follow the updated guidance on our website, which will be updated shortly to include more FAQ’s for different areas of our student community.
Professor Paul Boyle
Student Communications Officer Monday March 16th, 2020
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