I hope you are well.
Last week has seen incredible change, challenge, response and above all an overwhelming sense of us coming together as a community to support each other through these unprecedented times. It has been an absolute privilege for me to see the messages of support from students and staff for each other. It reminds me what a special community we are – and will continue to be.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we act as swiftly as possible to adapt to the changing way we need to deliver your course and support you.
We are determined to ensure you can continue your learning safely and without interruption where this is possible.
The broader community is also responding to Government restrictions as they are announced, such as the announcement last night requiring all cafes and restaurants to operate with takeaway service only and gyms to close from 12 noon today. This will impact on many of the businesses who operate at our different locations. The University is working with these businesses today to help them as they prepare for this change and we will keep you posted.
From Tuesday 17 March, students were asked not to attend any lecture which was automatically recorded and uploaded onto FLO.
Teaching staff immediately began to review all teaching activities to identify any activity which could be delivered online and these are being transitioned online as soon as possible.
- I can confirm that from today, Monday 23 March, all classroom-based activities for 100 students or more will be delivered online.
Some activities cannot be delivered online, such as laboratory or practical classes.
- From today, Monday 23 March, teaching activities which cannot be done online will be conducted in line with recommendations from health authorities relating to social distancing.
Please check FLO for updates from your Topic Coordinators on how your classes are being managed.
Staff will also review assessment requirements and any other course requirements in coming weeks which may need adjustment. These will be communicated to you.
Student Support – also moving online
As many students who would normally be on one of our campuses move to studying online, our support services are moving online with you.
Many of you will be familiar with Studiosity which is our online academic writing support service. Our Learning Lounge is also available ‘virtually’ and our Counselling and Disability services have moved to using phone and Skype for consultations. Other services are also moving online.
Ping! will provide you with an update on these service changes, and other changes as they are finalised.
There may be administrative changes to your enrolment for topics which do move to a Fully Online mode. We are identifying the best way to implement these and any subsequent changes to your Student Services and Amenities Fees which result.
For International Students, we have been given assurance from the University Regulator, TEQSA, that increased online study at this time does not mean a breach of your visa conditions.
Social distancing means increasing the physical space between you and others. It makes it harder for a virus to spread. The Department of Health has provided guidance on what Social Distancing means in the home, in workplaces and in public areas.
Some examples of actions we all can take to increase social distance include:
Some examples of actions everyone can take to increase social distance include:
- Ensure that you keep a physical distance of at least 1.5m from each other
- Stop handshaking and other physical greetings
- Wash your hand frequently with hot soapy water for at least 20 seconds, or use hand sanitiser where available
- Do not attend work if you are sick
- Use and encourage others to use good cough/sneeze hygiene
- Take lunch outside rather than inside
- Limit food handling and shared food in the workplace
- Clean and disinfect shared high-touch surfaces regularly
- Use phone calls of video-conferencing rather than face-to-face meetings where possible
- Where a face-to-face meeting is essential, ensure that you maintain at least 1.5m between individuals
Importantly, social distancing does not mean social isolation. Use physical distancing, stay socially connected and seek support if you need it. This week is Wellness Week at Flinders and you will hear about lots of tips on how to look after yourself online.
Ongoing updates, information and support
We have revised our student website this week and will keep this as a central point of reference for you in coming weeks and months.
The website will include the information in this email, links to resources and to the recordings of the information sessions held in the past week.
Take care and keep looking after each other,