Are regular and distance modes valid together?
Media release: Health and planning security in the center
Chur / Landquart, April 16, 2021
Tertiary educational institutions in Graubünden mostly end the semester in distance mode
Due to the latest opening steps by the Federal Council, there is the possibility for educational institutions in the tertiary sector to return to face-to-face teaching under the given framework conditions. The room capacity, which is limited to a third, as well as the continuity in the planning of the current semester, move the ibW Höhere Fachschule Südostschweiz, the University of Physiotherapy SUPSI & THIM, the Graubünden University of Education and the Graubünden University of Applied Sciences to mostly end the semester online.
The Federal Council decided this week to take further easing steps on April 19, 2021. This also includes a partial opening of adult education. In addition to the mask and clearance requirement, the opening of the universities is limited to a maximum of 50 people and a third of the room capacity. Jon Domenic Parolini, Education Minister of the Canton of Graubünden, welcomes the prospects that this creates for the students. “There is now planning security for the upcoming final and semester exams, as all types of exams are possible. Nevertheless, it is still important to consistently implement and comply with the applicable protective measures. "
The cantonal educational institutions in the tertiary sector, ibW Höhere Fachschule Südostschweiz, SUPSI, THIM, Graubünden University of Education and Graubünden University of Applied Sciences, which have been in close contact since the beginning of the pandemic, were confronted with various questions due to the latest regulations. In order to create the best conditions for the students to successfully complete the semester and to offer everyone the greatest possible planning security, the governing bodies of the educational institutions have made the necessary decisions together with the respective crisis teams and representatives of the Office for Higher Education.
Despite the at first glance tempting possibility of returning to face-to-face teaching, the five educational institutions decide to stick with the online lessons that have already been planned until the end of the semester. The main reasons for this are the limited space available with a third occupancy as well as the planning security for students and lecturers for the remaining semester weeks. Presence for certain types of special lessons remains unchanged, as has been possible since March 2020. The on-site implementation of the final semester exams, however, is welcomed by all five institutions.
Face-to-face lessons only in justified cases
Due to the different types of the five educational institutions, there are certain differences in the design of these resolutions.
At the ibW Höhere Fachschule Südostschweiz, distance learning continues to apply at the locations Chur, Sargans, Maienfeld Schule für Gestaltung Graubünden, Maienfeld Bildungszentrum Wald and Ziegelbrücke. On request, however, face-to-face events are generally possible while observing the protection concept. Priority is given to exams, exam preparation and exam-related lessons.
The decisions of the Federal Council only have a minor influence on the completion of the spring semester 2021 at the PH Graubünden. While there will be no changes for the bachelor's and master’s degree programs for prospective teachers, study weeks, advanced training courses and advanced training courses will be carried out selectively and where appropriate in terms of content, in face-to-face mode from next week. The internships in the local schools can be carried out as planned. Both for study weeks and for internships, the PH Graubünden offers its students the opportunity to take part in the school tests.
As already communicated in February 2021, the University of Applied Sciences of Graubünden will hold the entire spring semester in the Bachelor and consecutive Master programs in distance learning. In all of their decisions to date, the focus has been on the health of the university members and on ensuring the success of their studies in the regular schedule. For the latter, planning security is also an important aspect, both for the students and the lecturers. For example, students do not have to search for a shared flat for the remaining six weeks of the semester. In addition to the special forms of instruction, certain teaching units can be held on site again in justified exceptional cases, especially for the lower semesters, which up to now had to virtually cover almost their entire course of study. Thim van der Laan, Director of SUPSI Landquart and THIM confirms that the measures and decisions of the University of Applied Sciences Graubünden are also valid for the two universities of physiotherapy.
Due to the smaller class sizes, on the other hand, there will be a change to face-to-face teaching in the continuing education programs at the University of Applied Sciences Graubünden from next week. As Government Councilor Parolini had already mentioned: "In the area of continuing education, in which personal interaction among the participants is an essential element, the return to face-to-face teaching will be well used." On the other hand, the obligation to work from home for employees will continue unchanged, within the scope of operational possibilities.
-ibW Higher Technical School Southeastern Switzerland: www.ibw.ch
- Universities of Physiotherapy SUPSI & THIM: www.physiostudium.ch
-Graubünden University of Education: www.phgr.ch
-Graubünden University of Applied Sciences: www.fhgr.ch/coronavirus/
Dr. Gian-Paolo Curcio, Rector +41 81 354 03 20
University of Applied Sciences Graubünden:
Prof. Jürg Kessler, Rector +41 81 286 24 24
ibW Higher Technical School Southeastern Switzerland:
Stefan Eisenring, Director +41 79 631 76 77
THIM / SUPSI physiotherapy schools:
Thim van der Laan, Director +41 81 300 01 72
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