Online Teaching For NI Universities
Universities in Northern Ireland will move all of their teaching online from the 9th of December to allow students to return home for the holidays.
Students have also been made aware that they should take a Covid-19 test before returning home. Both Queens and Ulster University are offering rapid testing.
This new guidance was published by the executive today and may only affect a small number of students as the majority of teaching was already being done remotely. Yet, thousands of students still remain on the campus.
Some face to face teaching will still be allowed past the 9th where it is regarded as necessary. Students have been reminded that if they do choose to remain on campus from the 9th onwards, they may have to self-isolate over the Christmas period.
The guidance for rapid testing and self-isolation for students’ states:
“This will reduce the risk to your friends and family. These tests are only suitable if you do not have any symptoms of Covid-19. If you have Covid-19 symptoms must book a coronavirus test in the normal way.
If you remain at university after 9 December you are at risk of having to undertake a period of isolation if you contract Covid-19 or are identified as a close contact of a confirmed case. This would result in you being unable to travel home in time for Christmas. All students should aim to reduce their social contacts during the 14 day period prior to their intended travel date.”
No arrangements have yet to be made for students planning to return to their studies in the new year and new term. In England, start dates for certain institutions and courses have been staggered with some not starting until February.
While students take their Christmas break their minds will be on the uncertainty and confusion at their institutions as they prepare for the new term.