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Coronavirus measures continue throughout spring semester

The campuses will remain open, and teaching continues with the offer of on-campus lectures at least once a week. Employees will continue to work from home as the main rule.

Campus Grimstad (top) and Campus Kristiansand

University of Agder - Campus Grimstad (top) and Campus Kristiansand

Students who need access to special rooms or facilities will continue to have access. Reading rooms, group rooms and common areas will remain open.

Kristiansand municipality presented new prevention measures on Wednesday. The recommendation to work from home is still in place and continues to be the main rule also at UiA. It will be possible to work on campus if needed, as the practice is today.

UiA’s guidelines and measures concerning the coronavirus will continue throughout the spring semester.

Changes may occur at short notice

We will of course continue to practice everyday preventive actions; physical distancing, staying at home if any symptoms and good hand hygiene. Use the QR codes on campus and the Smittestopp app from the Norwegian Institute of Public Heath for contact tracing.

The health and safety of our students and staff are our top priority, and we want our students to have a normal study progression.

Should the situation change, and infection rates rise – which may happen quickly – we risk having to close down both campuses at short notice. Municipal health services may make that decision. Infection rates have been low so far in Agder, they are rising however, and there is a risk that more contagious mutated variants of the coronavirus may cause outbreaks in our region as well.

UiA’s operational preparedness group receives daily updates about students or staff who need to get tested and have to quarantine until test results are known. Some individuals from UiA have been put in isolation with confirmed coronavirus – last week two students from the Faculty of Humanities and Education and just before the weekend seven students from the School of Business and Law at UiA.

In larger outbreaks elsewhere in the country, colleges and universities were among the first institutions to close, as happened in March last year. We have to continue following the infection control guidelines at all times to increase our chances of keeping the restrictions at the current level.

Vaccination next summer

According to the immunisation programme as planned by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, the age group the majority of our students belong to will not get vaccines until after the spring semester ends.

Teaching and exams

Already in January, the decision was made for all exams to be held online this semester, and that decision stands no matter how the situation may change.

The university management together with the faculties have decided that the teaching at UiA will continue as presently conducted throughout the spring semester.

Arkivbilde fra 2015, da opp mot 200 studenter daglig tok eksamen i flerbrukshallen på Spicheren. (Arkivfoto: Morten Rosenvinge/UiA)

Arkivbilde fra 2015, da opp mot 200 studenter daglig tok eksamen i flerbrukshallen på Spicheren. (Arkivfoto: Morten Rosenvinge/UiA)

  • Teaching will continue as presently conducted unless an outbreak occurs, forcing municipal health services to implement stricter restrictions or closure.
  • All students should be ensured at least one face-to-face lecture a week.
  • Teaching requiring equipment on campus can be conducted.
  • Larger lectures and events must be avoided. Maximum group size in lectures will continue to be 60, as agreed with municipal health services.
  • If further restrictions become necessary, UiA will prioritise on-campus teaching in courses that cannot be taught online.

Continuing education

Face-to-face lectures once a week do not apply to continuing education students who often come from various geographical locations.

Continuing education courses will not be conducted face-to-face unless online teaching is impossible. The reason for this is to avoid travel between regions.

Many students use group rooms

Around 1,600 students a week are offered face-to-face lectures. Many others use group rooms, reading rooms and common areas. Others who come to campus are students who need access to special facilities and equipment, and around 350-400 employees.

All in all, around 2,300 people come to Campus Kristiansand every day, and 700-800 to Campus Grimstad.

Campus Grimstad has around a third the number of students that Campus Kristiansand has, but the proportion of students who need access to special facilities is larger.

Many group rooms are in use at both campuses, but many choose to follow lectures online even when offered face-to-face lectures.

  • Please continue to follow infection control guidelines, also in common areas like the canteen. Physical distancing continues to be important to prevent the spread of coronavirus.