Institutions are responding to the emerging COVID-19 pandemic in context-specific ways. Still, it is helpful to learn from each other and the following provides samples of institutional responses. In addition, links to national COVID-19 updates are posted below.

Curated Resources

Thank you to our STLHE community for resource suggestions. This is not an exhaustive list of resources. To add resources or webpages, email edc_communications@stlhe.ca. Certaines ressources sont en français.

Sample Institutional Central Pages
Resources for Students with Courses moved online/remote

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

(Remote) Faculty Development Resources
Sample Institutional Announcements

Samples identified by the STLHE community. To suggest, email edc_communications@stlhe.ca .

Closing/COVID

Final Grade Announcements

    • University of Calgary has updated its approach to grading for the Winter 2020 term. https://ucalgary.ca/news/final-grades-winter-2020-term “offer our students the choice to accept their final course grade or opt for Credit Received/Fail (CR/F) for each of their courses in the Winter 2020 term”
    • Program-by-program decision at U of T
    • Grading Procedures and honors – COVID-19 FAQ, Swarthmore College (Pennsylvania, US) – all grades are credit/no credit. Students can opt to “uncover” their grades  after they know their grade.

Final Exam approaches

    • Proctoring was not allowed or expected at the majority of institutions mentioned. Proctorio and ProctorU are being allowed at some institutions (noted in March 23rd webinar) based on Faculties requests or only when necessary.

Exam accommodations for students with disabilities

Course Evaluations

Shared in March 17th Webinar by community

  • McGill language around course-evaluations: 1) Some instructors are concerned that they themselves may be penalized in student end-of-course evaluations of them/their courses given current disruptions to teaching activities. To address this, the University has decided that, for the purposes of merit, reappointment, and tenure, instructors may decide that their course evaluations for Winter 2020 will not “count” in their performance assessments. That is, instructors can include these results if they think it will help their file, but may set these results aside if they feel that the current situation has caused so much disruption/uncertainty that their inclusion would be unfair.
  • Laurier: winter term evaluations will run as planned but faculty have the option not to have these included in their official files.
  • Western: cancelled for Winter 2020 – here’s the announcement: https://teaching.uwo.ca/news/2020/Student%20Questionnaires%20on%20Courses%20and%20Teaching%20Suspended%20for%20Winter%202020.html

Graduate Students announcements

Communication Methods

Communicating Institutional Coordination (Methods listed during March 17th webinar)

  • Lots of working groups in functional areas (e.g. academic continuity, business continuity, etc. – these groups include reps from all academic divisions as relevant – using Teams and SharePoint as tools; Daily calls with these groups, briefing notes get sent to institutional leadership
  • We have a pyramid: a central Emergency coordinating committee that has subgroups
  • We have an online system where both faculty and students can ask questions and those get triaged to relevant institutional working groups

Communicating with Educators (Methods listed during March 17th webinar)

  • Centralized website; Google docs
  • Holding one-on-one with faculty through Teams chat
  • Posting resources on website and Sharepoint
  • BBB (Big Blue Button) through Canvas; Bluejeans; Microsoft Teams; Skype; Bongo (embedded in D2L as Virtual Classroom), WebEx,
  • WhatsApp (often I send voice notes and they share with others in their department); FaceTime; Wechat
  • Email
  • Phone calls; Phone voice messages forwarded to email to receive them remotely
  • Few F2F (face-to-face), any in-person with social distancing
  • Coming from a specific department perspective (medical education), we’ve adopted a communication strategy where the postgrad director summarizes critical messaging, twice daily, from the various stakeholders (in a ‘what-so what-now what’ approach)
  • Short screencasts and documentation in support of the above practices will be available in the COVID-19 Preparedness Moodle shell at Thompson Rivers University

Communicating within Teams (Methods listed during March 17th webinar)

  • Combinations of online platforms (Microsoft teams, Skype, WebEx, Slack, BlueJeans) + Emails + phone when needed
  • Google calendar to book online consultations

How Educators are being recommended to communicate to students (Methods listed during March 17th webinar)

  • Blackboard, Blackboard Collaborate; Brightspace;
  • Email
  • Flexibility, asynchronous as much as possible, synchronous for small groups and record
  • Options to connect if students do not have computer/internet at home
  • Reminder: We had a poll in moodle, some of the new international students do not even have a personal computer yet. That makes everything difficult.

Other Stakeholders to Communicate with (Methods listed during March 17th webinar)

  • Reminder: A note for professional programs is to ensure they connect with accrediting bodies (if relevant)
  • Reminder: check on national professional exams (e.g., a person shared in the webinar chat that national exams for medical Residents have been canceled – see, for example, Resident Doctors of Canada website).
Research Operations & Graduate Students
Approaches: Shared Module Course Development
Moving Conferences Online
info

This website will be constantly evolving as we add resources. To add resources or webpages, or to suggest an additional sub-page, email: edc_communications@stlhe.ca or use the contact form.