Campus life again at last: For the winter semester, the University of Oldenburg is planning a study routine in which on-campus teaching will once again be an integral part.
Today, the Presidential Board informed the university public about the details of the implementation planned by the University's corona task force: A higher number of students and staff than previously planned will be allowed to the classrooms from the start of the semester on 1 October; the majority of degree programmes are planning on 40 to 60 percent of classes taught in (at least partial) attendance. Hygiene and distancing rules still apply in order to avoid chains of infection. Whenever the so-called “3G” rule applies, only those who have recovered, been vaccinated or tested will have access to courses with more than 25 participants.
"The winter semester at the University of Oldenburg will be a combination of increased face-to-face teaching and well-proven online teaching formats", says University President Prof. Dr Ralph Bruder. “In this way, the campus will once again become what it actually is: a place for teaching and learning together, for meeting and exchange.” The university can stick to its plans of extended on-campus activities even if the relevant limits are exceeded in autumn or winter. “This provides the necessary planning security for our students and staff”, Bruder continues.
Well-prove safety measures
The university relies on well-proven safety measures. These include the mandatory use of masks in all buildings (also during classes), ventilation and hygiene concepts as well as a continued physical distancing. In classes, it is possible to deviate from the general rule of a 1.5-metre distance - for example, if lecture halls are occupied in a "chessboard pattern" (the seats directly next to, in front of and behind the participants remain free). The bottom line is that this again creates significantly larger room capacities. This too means that more people can be in a room at the same time.
Despite this prospect of more on-campus activities, digital learning will remain a central part of studying in the winter semester: larger events with more than 100 participants will take place digitally. "In the past three semesters, our lecturers, together with the students, have managed to ensure the quality of studies and teaching under particularly adverse conditions," emphasises University President Bruder. This great achievement has produced many new digital formats of teaching and learning, he adds. "We will also benefit from this in the coming semester when teaching can once again be shaped in all facets - whether in presence, hybrid or digital."
3G rule takes effect from warning level 1
The state's 3G rule takes effect on campus from "warning level 1" of Lower Saxony’s Corona Regulation or when it is determined that the leading indicator "new infections" has risen to more than 50. This refers to the respective teaching location. The 3G rule applies for all meetings with more than 25 participants in closed rooms. For entry to these 3G-restricted events, participating students must provide evidence that they have been vaccinated or have recovered, or alternatively provide a current negative test record, at one of the designated 3G registration points on campus. They will then receive a corresponding digital note which they can show at access controls, for example. In the case of vaccination or recovery, a one-time proof is sufficient; the digital note then remains valid until the end of the semester.
University President Bruder: "The University has created the necessary framework and protective conditions for a vital campus life. In addition, I appeal to those students, teachers and employees who may not yet have had themselves vaccinated: Make use of the numerous free offers in the coming weeks. This will make coming together at our university even safer for everyone."