Questions/answers - spring 2020

How will the partial reopening of Danish society affect my classes and exams in spring 2020?

The political agreement reached on 20 May on the next phase of the reopening of Danish society states that “advanced degree programmes may conduct oral exams as well as teaching activities that require physical attendance”. 

What the possibility of resuming some on-site activities means in practice at Aarhus University is that a number of students and PhD students will be able to take classes that would otherwise have been postponed.

All written exams will still be conducted online from home, and the vast majority of exams will take place online. Selected oral exams will take place on campus. If you would prefer for an exam to be conducted online as planned, you can request this before the exam in accordance with specific guidelines. These will be available on your study portal.

 

Check your study portal regularly for the latest information on exams. Note that this information will be updated as the exam plans fall into place in light of the new possibilities opened up by phase two of the reopening.

Can I come to campus afterwards if I travel abroad during the summer holiday?

Aarhus University follows the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark’s guidelines.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark advises against all non-essential travel to a number of places. Travellers to these places are required by the authorities to self-isolate for fourteen days after returning to Denmark.

This applies to you as a student: if you travel to a place for which the ministry has issued a travel advisory, you must self-isolate for fourteen days after returning to Denmark before coming to campus.

Read more and check current travel advisories on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark website 

Does the partial reopening mean that I can access the university’s buildings?

Permission to access the university’s buildings only applies to you as a student, if you are involved in the selected exam and teaching activities that require physical attendance. This limitation complies with the political agreement reached on 20 May on the next phase of the reopening of Danish society.

You will be informed by your faculty and/or on your study portal if you are to participate in an exam or a class on campus.

Students to whom the partial reopening does not apply may not access AU’s buildings.

I am signed up to participate in a written exam with a time limit, but I can’t complete it due to the COVID-19 situation. How should I deal with this?

If your fixed-term exam is scheduled to take place while on-campus academic activities are suspended, and you are unable to participate on an equal footing with others, you will have a chance to take the exam later. The exam will not count as an extra examination attempt if you can document that the COVID-19 situation made it impossible for you to participate in the regularly scheduled exam.     

 

The university will perform a concrete assessment of your situation, including, for example, the following circumstances:

  • Participation in the emergency services (performing critical social functions in connection with the COVID-19 situation) As documentation, you must attach confirmation from your place of employment.
  • If you are the primary caregiver for a child/children who cannot be sent to school or daycare. As documentation, you must attach a solemn declaration – download the form here.
  • Long-term illness As documentation, you must attach a statement from your doctor.

I’m going to be taking an exam for the third time. If I can’t come to the exam because of the coronavirus, is there a risk that I could be expelled from the university?

As long as the university can’t offer you a way to take the exam because of the coronavirus, you will not be expelled. If you can’t participate because you get sick yourself or are quarantined, contact your studies administration office as quickly as possible, in accordance with the rules. Check your study portal for more information.     

I belong to a high-risk group and I do not feel comfortable going onto campus – what do I do?

 

 

If you belong to a high-risk group or are particularly vulnerable for some other reason – or if you are in close contact with relatives who are particularly vulnerable, you can complete all exam activities online this semester.

If your oral exam includes physical attendance at the university, it is possible for you to submit a request before your exam and ask for your exam to be conducted online from home. You will be asked to state your reasons, but documentation will not be required. Please find the guidelines on your study portal.

If you are going to participate in teaching activities on campus, please contact your local studies administration unit and they will help you find a solution.

In general, please contact your local studies administration unit if you have any questions about your situation. Please find contact information at the top of the page.

I’m working on my Master’s thesis, but I’m having problems because of the COVID-19 situation –What do I need to do?

First of all, you need to contact your supervisor for help to complete your thesis on time. This might involve adjustments at the theoretical or methodological level, in the literature you draw on or other scientific/scholarly aspects of the project.

If the coronavirus situation is making it difficult for you to finish your thesis on time, and your supervisor can’t help you find a solution, you can apply for a extension of the deadline. In your application, you must describe the specific circumstances resulting from the coronavirus situation that are the reason you need more time.

The boards of studies can grant extensions. They will assess the best way to compensate you for the time you have lost due to the special circumstances caused by the coronavirus situation. In other words, they can grant extensions of just a few weeks to more than a month.

Here are some examples of the kinds of circumstances the boards of studies will consider legitimate grounds for asking for an extension:

  • Inability to gather empirical data, lack of access to source material or inability to continue lab work. As documentation, you must attach a statement from your supervisor.
  • Participation in the emergency services (performing critical social functions in connection with the coronavirus situation) As documentation, you must attach confirmation from your place of employment.
  • If you are the primary caregiver for a child/children who cannot attend school or daycare. As documentation, you must attach a  solemn declaration.
  • Long-term illness (physical and/or mental) or illness in the immediate family. As documentation, you must attach a statement from your doctor.

Submit application for an extension

My Master's thesis involve lab work. Does the partial, limited reopening apply to me?

A few Master’s degree students whose projects involve lab work can be given access to the labs. These are students whose projects are particularly dependent on access to labs for their completion. Master’s thesis students are given access by agreement between the head of department and the thesis supervisor. If this applies to you, you are informed directly from your thesis supervisor.     

I’m working on my Bachelor’s project, but I’m having problems because of the coronavirus situation.What should I do?

First of all, you need to contact your supervisor for help to complete your Bachelor’s project on time. This might involve adjustments at the theoretical or methodological level, in the literature you draw on or other scientific/scholarly aspects of the project.

If the coronavirus situation is making it difficult for you to finish your project on time, and your supervisor can’t help you find a solution, you can apply for a extension of the deadline. In your application, you must describe the specific circumstances resulting from the coronavirus situation that are the reason you need more time.

The boards of studies can grant extensions. They will assess the best way to compensate you for the time you have lost due to the special circumstances caused by the coronavirus situation. In other words, they can grant extensions of just a few weeks to more than a month.

Here are some examples of the kinds of circumstances the boards of studies will consider legitimate grounds for asking for an extension:

  • Inability to gather empirical data, lack of access to source material or inability to continue lab work. As documentation, you must attach a statement from your supervisor.
  • Participation in the emergency services (performing critical social functions in connection with the coronavirus situation) As documentation, you must attach confirmation from your place of employment.
  • If you are the primary caregiver for a child/children who cannot attend school or daycare. As documentation, you must attach a  solemn declaration.
  • Long-term illness (physical and/or mental) or illness in the immediate family. As documentation, you must attach a statement from your doctor.

Submit application for an extension

Can extensions on a Master’s thesis or Bachelor’s project be granted to a group?

All board of studies may grant a joint extension to an entire Master's thesis group or a Bachelor's project group, in cases in which one or more members of the group have been affected by the coronavirus situation.

In your application, you must describe the specific circumstances resulting from the coronavirus situation that are the reason your group needs more time.

The boards of studies will assess the best way to compensate you for the time your group has lost due to the special circumstances caused by the coronavirus situation. In other words, they can grant extensions of just a few weeks to more than a month.

Here are some examples of the kinds of circumstances the boards of studies will consider legitimate grounds for asking for an extension:

  • Inability to gather empirical data, lack of access to source material or inability to continue lab work. As documentation, you must attach a statement from your supervisor.
  • Participation in the emergency services (performing critical social functions in connection with the coronavirus situation) As documentation, you must attach confirmation from your place of employment.
  • If you are the primary caregiver for a child/children who cannot attend school or daycare. As documentation, you must attach a  solemn declaration.
  • Long-term illness (physical and/or mental) or illness in the immediate family. As documentation, you must attach a statement from your doctor.

Submit application for an extension

How will my classes take place in the coming weeks?

As far as possible, classes are switched to other learning formats and forms of instruction. These might include more detailed study guides, assignments or video conferences on Blackboard. You will receive information from your faculty and in your course forum on Blackboard. Here, your lecturer will keep you informed of how the teaching will be conducted during the physical closure of AU.

Can I meet with my study group?

The Danish health authorities advise everyone to practice social distancing. For this reason, Aarhus University strongly encourages students to use digital platforms for study group meetings. Students can use Skype for Business, which is part of the Office 365, for online meetings with multiple participants. Study groups can also meet on Messenger, Facetime, and similar tools.    

What happens if an entire degree programme is delayed?

Aarhus University will follow the guidelines set out on the authorities’ official coronavirus site. If you are unable to complete your degree programme within the maximum degree completion time because of this extraordinary situation, you will be given an opportunity to extend your degree completion time, even though the official maximum degree completion time has been exceeded. 

Students can also apply for supplements to the monthly SU grant. However, it is important to stress that individual applicants will be evaluated on the background of their specific situation. You must be able to document that there is a causal relationship between the coronavirus situation and the delay.

I work part-time in the healthcare sector. What should I do about my classes and exams if I’m called in for extra shifts?

If you can’t participate in obligatory course elements or an exam, you can apply for an exemption and present relevant documentation, for example your work schedule.   

I can’t go to the lab to work on my experiments, which are part of my assignment. What should I do?

Talk to your supervisor about what you should do, and whether it’s possible for you to do a more theoretical assignment instead.    

Should I postpone applying for the exemptions I was planning to apply for before students and employees were sent home from the university?

No, you should apply for any relevant exemptions you anticipate that you will need during your normal course of studies.  

I am enrolled on a part-time degree programme - does the cancellation of teaching activities, etc. also affect me?

Yes, part-time students are also affected, and we are working on offering alternative teaching sessions. Starting on Monday 16 March, the university will transition into alternative teaching formats and online instruction. You will receive more information from your faculty. You should also check your course forum on Blackboard. Your teacher will inform you on the alternative arrangements for teaching sessions in the coming weeks.  

I'm doing an internship or a project-based course – what should I do?

As a rule, you have the opportunity to complete you internship, but it depends on the circumstances at your host organisation. Please follow their guidelines.

If you can't complete your internship, please contact your local studies administration to find out what you need to do.

What do I do if I can’t come to class and active participation in teaching activities is either a prerequisite for taking the exam or constitutes the exam itself?

We are working to find alternative solutions, so that classes will can be taught online or postponed, for example. Keep an eye on your study portal or Blackboard.

I’m a first-year student and there are some courses I have to pass in my first year. How will the fact that I can’t come to class affect the first-year exam?

Right now, everyone is working hard to find solutions and either switch the teaching and exams to various alternative solutions or to conduct the teaching and exams at a later date. Keep an eye on your study portal or Blackboard for more information.    

I have applied – or plan to apply – for a degree programme at Aarhus University. What should I do in the light of the corona situation?

In case of changes that you need to be aware of, information will be available on the following websites:  

Information for applicants for Bachelor’s degree programmes

Information for applicants for Master’s degree programmes

Can I still send an application for the courses on offer this autumn?

Yes, you can still apply through the digital application system for all courses open for applications. For access, go to the degree programme websites:

Arts: https://arts.au.dk/en/education/continuing-and-further-education/ (only in Danish)

Aarhus BSS: https://bss.au.dk/en/continuing-education/

Health: https://health.au.dk/en/education/continuing-education/ (only in Danish)

Natural Sciences: https://www.au.dk/evu/nat-tech/ (only in Danish)

Technical Sciences: https://tech.au.dk/en/education/continuing-and-further-education/  (only in Danish)

Can I talk to someone on the phone or in person for guidance on my application?

No, unfortunately not because of the corona situation, but you are welcome to send us an email, and we will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Arts

Email: evu.arts@au.dk

Aarhus BSS

Email: studentservices.bss@au.dk

Natural Sciences and Technical Sciences

Email: evu.nat-tech@au.dk

Health

Email: evu.health@au.dk

I am collecting documentation for my application, but I am experiencing longer processing times due to corona. What do I do if the application deadline expires before I can get hold of the documents?

Fortunately, there is still some time left before the deadline for applications expires, but if, due to the coronavirus outbreak, you are unable to obtain certain documents in due time, you will have to submit your application along with the other documentation via the digital application system and upload a substitute document in place of the missing document. The substitute document must describe what documentation you are trying to obtain and include a message from the relevant authority indicating their processing time.

If I have to sit a reexamination, what should I expect?

If your first exam attempt takes place online, your reexamination will take place in the same format. In other words, there will be no difference between your first exam attempt and the re-exam. This will be the case even if developments in the coronavirus situation open up the possibility of conducting an on-site exam when your re-exam is to take place.

How do I prepare myself for my online exam?

It is a good idea to prepare yourself for an exam that will take place in new physical surroundings. Particularly oral online exams will be a unfamiliar format for most students. For that reason, it would be a good idea to practice the exam format as part of your preparation - preferably with a fellow student or your study group. It is all about making sure you feel comfortable with the format and the technical aspects. This will allow you focus on the academic content during the exam.

Here are some tips for how you can prepare yourself for your online exam.

Familiarise yourself thoroughly with the exam you are taking. You will find this information in the exam schedule on your study portal for the individual course. Students at Arts can find this information in the course catalogue.

Find out what technical equipment you need, e.g. a computer, a webcam and a charged mobile phone. Test that the equipment is working well in advance of the exam.

Find out what programmes you need for the exam in question, e.g. Zoom, Digital Exam or Wiseflow. Test that the programmes work well in advance of the exam. This also applies if you have to submit your assignment in a PDF format. Check that you are able to convert your assignment into the right format.

If you are to use Zoom for the exam, please read the guidelines on how to use Zoom for exams. For IT security reasons, it is important that you follow the guidelines. English version will be available as soon as possible.

Make sure that you know whom to contact and what to do if you experience technical problems in an oral exam. 

Familiarise yourself with how you avoid cheating on your exams. Be particularly aware that you are not allowed to talk to anyone during individual exams - not even if you take the exams from home. See the website about cheating at exams or read our folder (English version will be available soon) 

Ask your lecturer before the exam, if you are in doubt about anything.

Get more good advice on online oral exams on studypedia (in Danish) or go to your study portal for more information.

What should I do if I experience technical problems in my oral online exam?

If you experience technical problems, the guidelines below apply. You must follow these guidelines if you cannot log on to the chosen exam platform (Zoom) at the start of the exam and if you experience technical problems during the exam, which prevent you from completing the exam.

  • In case of technical problems, you must establish contact with your examiner or the IT Support immediately. Find the specific guidelines on your study portal (follow the links below).
  • When you have established contact, you must first of all try to reestablish the connection to Zoom.
  • If Zoom still does not work, you must try to establish a connection via Skype for Business.
  • If it proves impossible to establish a connection within five minutes, the exam will be terminated.
  • Your examiner will then contact you by email or phone to arrange a new time for the exam. If this is not possible, you will be asked to take the exam the next time it is offered.

No matter what, you will not have used an exam attempt if you are unable to complete your exam due to technical difficulties.

Find the specific guidelines on your study portal

  • Arts students  – read here 
  • BSS-studerende – read here 
  • Health-studerende – read here (or go to your study portal)
  • Nat- og Tech-studerende – read here (go to your study portal and find information under ‘Examination’ > ‘Examination schedules’ > ‘COVID-19 exam and re-exam’)

You will not be asked to document the technical difficulties. On the other hand, we do recommend that you make sure that you understand exactly how your online exam will be conducted.

Can I use AU-Access (VPN)?

Yes, you can use AU-Access. 

If you use AU-Access (VPN) to access a number of AU services from home, please note that the university introduces two-step authentication from 1 May 2020. This means that you must set up two-step authentication before 1 May in order to be able to continue to use VPN. Read the article ‘AU introduces two-step authentication on AU-Access (VPN)’.

What impact does the corona crisis have on my SU?

The Danish Agency for Institutions and Educational Grants has made an FAQ with up-to-date information on SU in relation to the current corona crisis: https://www.su.dk/covid-19-og-su/

I’m sick. What documentation do I need to submit along with my application for an exemption?

You must submit a doctor’s certificate. If you can’t get an appointment with your doctor due to coronavirus, try to get a consultation with your doctor online or by phone. If this is not possible, you must complete a solemn declaration stating that you are ill and are therefore unable to meet your normal requirements for the degree programme. You will find the solemn declaration here. If you need to document long-term illness, we may have to postpone consideration of your application for an exemption until you are able to get a doctor's certificate. In that case, you will receive further information from studies administration about this after you submit your application.    

I have become ill, what should I do?

If you become so ill that it affects your ability to follow the regular classes ( i.e. the alternative solutions offered), you need to contact your local studies administration. They can guide you on how to apply for dispensation.

 

If you suspect that you have been infected with the coronavirus, follow the advice of the authorities.