Information for students, faculty and staff regarding COVID-19. (Updated: 1 July 2020)

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(Last updated: 17 June 2020, 14:51) This page is aimed at teaching staff at Umeå University. On 29 May, the Government decided to open universities again. This means that Umeå University’s premises will be open to students from 10 August, and that this autumn’s teaching will be able to follow a more normal routine on campus. Nevertheless, the University continues to follow the recommendations issued by the Swedish authorities to reduce the risk of spreading disease.

Guidelines for lectures, written exams, lab sessions and other teaching situations for autumn semester 2020

Even if restrictions on campus-based education are lifted, all education does not need to be reinstated immediately to campus. It is desirable to plan for a flexible teaching and learning model. Thus, course components that are suited for online tools can continue to be carried out remotely initially even once the restrictions have been lifted.

If it is possible to carry out teaching and examination in such a way that the Public Health Agency of Sweden’s and other authorities’ directives and general advice are observed, then education and examination can be carried out on campus. When this is not possible, teaching and examination must instead be carried out remotely.

Bookable premises adapted for the autumn semester

Seating in lecture halls and other premises will be limited to at least one empty seat between each person depending on furnishing. This means that every other seat will be removed. Available seats will be spread diagonally across the room. This means that only half the maximum number of seats can be used in each room up until the definite maximum of 49 seats.

  • In public spaces, premises must be adapted to the Public Health Agency of Sweden's recommendation regarding physical distance. This also goes for entering and leaving premises and buildings.
  • Labs and equivalent and the work in these premises must be adapted to make sure that directions and recommendations are followed to.

Book your premises

It is important that premises are booked early to give the University a good overview of the need for premises. If the University’s premises will not be sufficient this autumn, if there are not enough appropriate rooms available when booking that is, please notify Infocenter so that other external premises can be offered.

  • The descriptions in TimeEdit of each campus room have been updated with details on how many people each room can safely take with regards to the COVID-19 guidelines.
  • Cancellations of bookings of joint university premises are free of charge if the cancellation takes place before 30 August. This goes for bookings for the period of 31 August until 31 December. From 1 September, ordinary terms and conditions apply, which is that you can cancel a booking two days before the booking is due to take place, otherwise the full cost will be charged.
  • Departments and offices are responsible for adapting their own meeting rooms, labs, office spaces and other premises according to the guidelines.

Safety precautions

  • Groups may not exceed 50 participants.
  • People must be at least 1.5 metres apart in lecture halls, labs and other premises.
  • There must be 1–2 empty seats between each person in auditoriums and equivalent in other rooms. Available seats must be spread diagonally in the room.
  • Hand sanitizer has been ordered and will be placed in lecture halls to ensure hygiene.
  • Lectures for large groups of students should as far as possible be held online.
  • Students on their first and final semester should be prioritised on campus.
  • The Public Health Agency of Sweden’s checklist for risk assessment can be used to plan teaching situations.

Evening education

Teaching and examination that would normally be held in daytime can be scheduled to evenings if required to prevent the risk of spreading disease, but only with consideration for the ability of students and teaching staff to participate. For example, students and teachers with small children may find it difficult to participate in evenings.

Studies abroad

Staff responsible for outgoing students with exchanges planned for autumn semester 2020 are recommended to, in consultation with the students, investigate the opportunities to postpone the exchange studies.

There is currently a temporary entry ban to the European Union via Sweden, which means that there is currently no guarantee that incoming international students can travel to Sweden even if they have been granted a residence permit. The International Office is following the progress.

Learn more from the Swedish Government Offices

Extending the validity date of decisions

The study administrative group will propose a suggestion that enables teaching and examination outside of ordinary working and study hours for educations that require access to specialised premises and in which the group size may result in dividing teaching onto multiple occasions.

Decisions to adapt for instance course syllabi need to be extended until the end of the autumn semester to give teaching staff the opportunity to mix campus-based and online teaching. The study administrative group is currently working on compiling a list of decisions that need to be revised and extended.

Deviation from course syllabus

The Vice-Chancellor has decided to extend the validity of the decision Deviations from course syllabus to prevent further spreading of COVID-19 (FS 3.1.4-667-20) until 17 January 2021. This means that deviations may be made from established formats of teaching and examination in course syllabi to the extent necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The person who normally makes decision on course syllabi and examination also makes decisions of necessary deviations and ensures that the decision is well-documented and archived. In those cases where an examination requires access to a computer or internet connection, students must be offered such aids that allow them to participate from a technical perspective.

Summer courses

Despite new guidelines from 29 May, the University maintains that 2020 summer courses should be implemented through online teaching. However, as a result of the news on 29 May, a course can be held on campus if needed and if practically feasible.

Please note that if a course component is to be carried out on campus, group sizes may not exceed 50 participants and consideration for disease prevention must be taken. Please also note that if a course component will be moved from online teaching to a campus-based format, departments need to take into consideration the students’ ability to participate in person if they have previously received information that the course is offered remotely.

Read the Vice-Chancellor’s decision from 21 April