Support for teaching in light of the corona situation
Here, we have gathered information and support that may be useful during the coronavirus outbreak, with regard to online work and changes to rules.
Content on this page
- Face masks in teaching
- Management of remote and campus-based education
- Changes to course and programme syllabi
- Managing students in at-risk groups or who have relatives who are infected
- Management of laboratory sessions and study trips
- Support for online teaching – technical support
- Zoom at LU and security
- Online examinations
- Archiving/storage of digital exams
- Doctoral thesis defences online
- Personal data processing in remote teaching and examination
- Who owns the rights to teaching material in remote education?
- Student support
- Remote assessment
- Tips and good examples of how teaching staff can develop their digital teaching and assessment at education.lu.se
- Working from home – tools and tips
Lund University follows the Swedish Public Health Agency’s guidelines and recommendations when it comes to the use of face masks. There is no general recommendation on the use of face masks at the University. However, there may be certain teaching components that cannot be carried out while maintaining 1.5m distancing between people. In these cases, face masks may be a good aid. However, the decision in these cases is taken at the faculty or department level.
If face masks are to be purchased, the procured supplier (OneMed) is to be used in the first instance. Search for “munskydd” (face masks) under the purchasing tab in Proceedo.
The University has decided that teaching and assessment of student performance (examinations) may be carried out on University premises as of 15 June 2020, provided that the Swedish Public Health Agency’s rules, general guidelines and recommendations for a reduced spread of infection of Covid-19 are observed
Activities will not be able to be conducted in the same way as before the coronavirus pandemic, but there is no longer a requirement for an exceptional reason for campus-based teaching and assessment. Education is to be conducted both on the University’s premises and via digital tools. The dean of each faculty is to decide how education is to be conducted taking into consideration the vice-chancellor’s decisions and recommendations.
Teaching and assessment that is carried out on the University’s premises, or other location under the management of the University, is to be preceded by a risk assessment and measures to reduce the spread of infection following an overall assessment. The possibility for social distancing between participants and the possibility of hand hygiene is to be ensured. No gatherings are to be bigger than a maximum of 50 people.
In the University’s planning for the autumn, there must be a preparedness to be able to act quickly if conditions change.
Prioritisation of teaching and assessment
Firstly, with regard to carrying out education on the University’s premises, priority should be given to education that cannot or is most difficult to carry out with digital tools.
- Assessments that are impossible, or possible only with great difficulty, to carry out digitally.
- Teaching components with artistic, practical or laboratory elements.
- Work placements, field studies and practical activities that cannot be carried out in an alternative way. Externally located components are to adhere to any host organisation guidelines to reduce the spread of infection.
- Education for international students who are dependent on their education for their residency permits is largely to be conducted on campus.
- Education and introductory components for students starting their studies at the University in the autumn semester 2020.
- Education and assessment that should be conducted with physical presence for students who are finalising their studies.
Libraries, study areas and group rooms should remain accessible for students as far as possible with consideration given to measures to reduce the spread of infection.
Conducting campus-based teaching and assessment
In planning the teaching and assessment that is to be carried out on the University’s premises, or other location under the management of the University, several aspects need to be considered in an overall assessment to ensure the risk of the spread of infection is reduced.
- The possibility of sufficient social distancing between people is to be ensured. A distance of at least one metre is to be maintained between people in the same space.
- This means that the planning of timetables and the use of premises is to be carried out to ensure that there is no overcrowding.
- This may involve reducing the number of places that are available in a particular venue, the creation of distancing between seats, directing entry and exit to premises, organising queues for toilets and refreshments.
- Information can be provided via clear signs, markings or other instructions.
- It may also involve arranging for transport in conjunction with components that are carried out in locations other than the University’s premises in a way that minimises the spread of infection.
Conducting remote teaching and assessment
If it is not possible to carry out measures to reduce the spread of infection due to the design of the premises or other circumstances, teaching and assessment is to be carried out with digital tools.
Lectures or other components of education with more than 50 participants are still to be conducted with digital tools.
Students who belong to a risk group or who live with a person who belongs to a risk group may need special consideration and adaptation in the implementation of teaching and assessment where physical presence is required.
Check learning outcomes
The learning outcomes continue to apply. Other forms of teaching and assessment may be used. The course is not completed until the learning outcomes are fulfilled and assessed.
Faculties given the right to decide on extending the spring semester
On 8 April, the University decided to give the faculty boards the right to decide on the extension of the spring semester to the extent necessary to complete each course or programme. The maximum extension period is up to and including 30 August 2020, the day before the autumn semester begins.
Courses and programmes are to continue to offer equal opportunities
In the use of digital tools, it is important to take into account the conditions that apply for different students. Access to equipment and technical knowledge differs widely between students.
The rules about student influence also apply during changed circumstances. Opportunities for student representatives to express views before decisions are taken may, however, need to be adapted to the situation. This may, for example, entail that student representatives must be prepared to submit views at short notice, so that the University can make urgent decisions. Sometimes it is not possible to implement changes or make decisions according to usual procedures. Always document and establish support for any decisions with the student representatives afterwards if there is no other alternative.
Documentation and official documents
The requirement for documentation and preservation of official documents always applies. This means information that is received, produced or sent in different tools is to be preserved in the same way that usually applies for information.
Managing students who are in the Covid-19 risk group
Concerning students who are in the risk group (at risk of becoming seriously ill from Covid-19) or live with someone who is in the risk group, there may be a need to take specific safety measures for teaching and assessment in addition to the Swedish Public Health Agency’s rules, general guidelines and recommendations. To prevent further burden on the healthcare services, the recommendation is that students
- Primarily, education should be adapted to the student’s needs in accordance with the delegation outlined in the vice-chancellor’s decision STYR 2020/251 (11 June 2020). Programme and course-related study guidance should be prioritised for these students in order to produce customised solutions based on the specific situation and the student’s conditions. A decision on adaptation should be taken in connection with the programme or course and be applied generously.
- If adaptation of the programme or course to the student’s needs is not possible, the student has the right to apply for leave from studies with a guaranteed place on return or defer commencement of their studies in accordance with chapter 7, section 33 of the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100) and the Swedish Council for Higher Education’s regulations on deferment of studies for admitted students and leave from studies (UHRFS 2013:3).
The Swedish Higher Education Authority (UKÄ) has changes the application of its rules in connection with the coronavirus outbreak. For example, urgent changes to forms of examination are permitted and changes to syllabi can be made at a later date. Examinations may, in the worst case, need to be postponed or cancelled. UKÄ also permits urgent changes to degree programmes.
In situations where it is necessary to follow the University’s decision on the implementation of teaching and assessment, the approved course and programme syllabi relating to the autumn semester 2020 may be changed with regard to the forms of assessment of student performance and for teaching to be conducted digitally. Decisions on changes are to be taken by the person who approved the decision on the relevant course or programme syllabus. Consultation is to take place with the relevant students’ union. The decision is to be documented including a statement on the reason for the change.
Much of what is stated in the course syllabi, including the relevant study cycle, number of credits and learning outcomes applies just as before. Unless the number of lectures is stated in the course syllabus, this can be modified if teaching resources are needed elsewhere.
Please note that it is not permitted to change the grading scale in a course syllabus.
For students who belong to an at-risk group (risk of becoming severely ill with Covid-19) or who live with someone in an at-risk group, special safety measures may be required for teaching and assessment in addition to the Public Health Agency’s directions, general advice and recommendations. To avoid burdening the healthcare service, it is recommended that proof of belonging to an at-risk group not be required. The following applies to such students.
- The study programme should primarily be adapted to the student’s needs in accordance with the delegation specified in the vice-chancellor’s decision STYR 2020/251 (11 June 2020). Study guidance centred on the relevant study programme or course should be prioritised for these students, so as to develop personalised solutions based on each situation and the student’s circumstances. Decisions on adaptive measures should be taken in connection with the study programme or course and applied generously.
- If it is not possible to adapt the study programme or course to the individual student’s needs, the student is entitled to apply for approved leave with a guaranteed place when they resume their studies, or to request a deferment pursuant to Chapter 7 Section 33 of the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100) and the regulations of the Swedish Council for Higher Education on deferment of studies for admitted students and approved leave from studies (UHRFS 2013:3).
- Students who are close to someone who has been confirmed as infected may, depending on the situation, be affected by Smittskydd Skåne’s rules concerning household contact with individuals confirmed as having Covid-19. In such cases, particular attention and adaptive measures may be needed when undertaking teaching and assessment involving a physical presence.
Laboratory sessions, study trips or similar components may be conducted provided that the Swedish Public Health Agency’s rules, general guidelines and recommendations are observed. Other solutions may include recording demonstrations or livestreaming. Remember to document what has been done.
All teaching staff and employees can access support for online teaching and digital meetings via the learning platform Canvas. Here, you can access digital tools and available options as well as instructions on how to use them. You can also get individual support and view the status for the different tools. There is also support for digital meetings. There, you will find instructions and resources for the tools: Zoom, Teams, Canvas and for video recording.
- Log in and start the course "Go online (CoVid-19)" in Canvas (log in with your Lucat ID)
- Tips and good examples of how teaching staff can develop their digital teaching and assessment at education.lu.se
Remember to also check the rules regarding personal data protection in remote education.
Lund University, like other higher education institutions in the Nordic countries, uses the Zoom service from Sunet/NORDUnet, with servers in Denmark. NORDUnet’s Zoom service observes GDPR and other European data legislation and all data is stored and processed within the EU. LU-Zoom differs from the widely available free version of Zoom. The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB) has issued a warning about the security risks associated with Zoom, but please note that this does not apply to LU-Zoom via NORDUnet.
Bear in mind:
- Data is encrypted in LU-Zoom, but discussion of sensitive information is to be avoided nonetheless.
- Keep the Zoom app updated.
- Only include participants who are logged in.
- You can use passwords for external participants.
Read more about LU Zoom and security on the Canvas pages (log in with Lucat ID):
- Zoom at LU and Security
- Creating Safe Meeting Spaces for You and Your Students
- Creating Secure Meeting Spaces with External Participants
- Security when hosting a meeting
The capacity to change the forms of examination and compulsory components is more limited, primarily for legal reasons.
Due to Covid-19, the Swedish Higher Education Authority (UKÄ) has made changes to the application of their rules, making it possible for the higher education institutions to make urgent changes to the forms of examination and only including these changes in the course syllabi subsequently, without the risk of being reported.
As examinations are to be conducted in a new form, it is not certain that all examination dates can be retained. It is important that you as a teaching staff member have time to transform the examination so that it works for the course, depending on the course content, learning outcomes and the size of the student group. It may thus transpire that an examination date is postponed or split between a number of dates. Remember to document, so that it will be possible to trace what has been done when everything is calmer. Inform the students as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, several faculties/departments have issued their own decisions and guidelines concerning examinations during the current situation, which makes it difficult to formulate general advice for individual members of teaching staff in courses for which the examination is planned in a way that is not possible to carry out due to the risk of infection. Before you, as a member of teaching staff, make any changes to your examinations, it is important that you first find out if your faculty/department has issued any specific recommendations/guidelines.
Several Swedish higher education institutions have published tips and advice on how to carry out examinations remotely. These alternatives are primarily those that do not require invigilation and that allow students to use support aids, such as take-home examinations, individual assignments, group assignments or oral exams. If you have the option of choosing such alternatives, you will avoid the problems related to online invigilated exams when it comes to ID checks and fulfilling legal requirements – although, certain types of knowledge are, of course, harder to measure with such forms of examination.
In the designing of a new type of examination, try to ensure that the marking stage does not involve too much work. Changes in the normal teaching hours may need to be made together with the programme director and documented.
Cheating/plagiarism/deception in examinations
Remember to clarify for the students which types of study aid and cooperation are permitted, e.g. in written assignments. Suspected cheating is to be reported to the Disciplinary Board in accordance with the usual procedure (however, there may be reason to remind the students about this).
Documents such as distributed assignments and submitted answered assignments are produced in connection with digital examinations. These documents are usually in physical form. Regardless of whether an examination is on paper or digital – or in some other form – the documents are to be saved. Distributed assignments are preserved in perpetuity. Submitted answered assignments are saved for two years before they can be disposed of (destroyed).
What is the best way to save digital exams?
- If the exams, assignments as well as submitted answers, are already in one of the University’s virtual learning environments – or another system – they can remain there. Nothing more needs to be done.
- If the exams, assignments and answers, are not in a system according to the above, they need to be collected in a secure server space within the department or faculty.
If you have any questions about records management, contact your local registrar.
The transition to remote teaching has placed considerable demands on the organisation, not least through the need to adapt and produce teaching material for use in virtual learning environments and other digital tools. In such a situation, questions may arise about who owns the rights to the material.
Teaching staff who produce teaching material own the copyright to what they have created, if it is sufficiently original. This may include exercise assignments, reading instructions, and exam questions and answers. As the material was produced as a result of being employed at the University, the University has the right to use it in order to provide continuous and efficient teaching. The University’s right to use also includes that which has been made available e.g. through a virtual learning environment or other digital tool. This may include notes, material for lectures, or presentations. The University’s use requires no specific consent from, or compensation to, the teaching staff member.
- Read more on the Staff Pages about copyright
- See the decision in LU’s rules and regulations: General recommendations on Lund University’s right to use copyrighted material I 2017 I (PDF, 55 kB, new window)
- See the memorandum Who owns the rights to teaching material in remote education? (PDF, 123 kB, new window)
If you have any questions, contact the Legal Division.
When education is switched to distance education, many things change for the students. The social gatherings and spontaneous conversations, both subject-related and non-subject-related, disappear.
There are many good ideas across Lund University about how to support each other. One example is to have regular coffee breaks on Zoom, or similar, perhaps with a theme at which a member of teaching staff or a student presents a current issue and then opens up for free discussion. You could also offer students or others the chance to help with the planning and moderating.
These are challenging times for us all, be particularly attentive to the wellbeing of your students and you are encouraged to provide them with information on where they can access support.
Student Health Centre – health and lifestyle
The Student Health Centre is there for students who need help to handle stress, performance anxiety, fear of public speaking, worry, alcohol-related problems, difficulties sleeping and depression or for those wanting to change their lifestyles.
The Student Chaplaincy
The Student Chaplaincy in Lund offers counseling to students and staff, regardless of whether you are religious or not. Their individual sessions are strictly confidential and free of charge. They also offer counseling over the telephone or by video call.
Academic Support Centre – study techniques and academic writing
The Academic Support Centre can help you to improve your study skills, your confidence in public speaking and to write academic texts.
LU ServiceDesk provides IT support for students and staff. Please contact them via email servicedesk [at] lu [dot] se or telephone +46 46 222 90 00.
The Swedish Board of Student Finance (CSN) website provides information on what applies in the prevailing circumstances. Certain relief measures have been introduced for students. CSN has, in certain cases, requirements for documentation of the changes that have been made in courses or programmes and for the dates that examinations took place. It is important to create a system for managing this.
- Read more on the CSN website – csn.se
- Guidance for the management of registrations in Ladok and for CSN reporting when studies are rearranged concerning spring semester 2020 from CSN and the Ladok consortium (PDF, 95 kB, new tab) (in Swedish)
If you have questions about the corona crisis, you as an employee should first and foremost contact your line manager.
You can also send questions to: corona [at] lu [dot] se