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How Nova Scotia universities are responding to the coronavirus pandemic

Coronavirus outbreak: A look at how Canada’s provinces are handling COVID-19 as new cases reported nationwide
New cases of the COVID-19 disease continued to be reported across Canada on Saturday, with Prince Edward Island confirming its first case, New Brunswick its second and Ontario and Quebec reporting 22 and 24 new cases respectively. Morganne Campbell takes a look at how each province is tackling the coronavirus and what measures are being put in place.

St. Francis Xavier University, Acadia University and Cape Breton University have joined several other universities in Nova Scotia in suspending in-person classes next week.

All three universities issued statements to their respective websites Saturday afternoon, but the class restrictions are different for each.

 

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Here’s how each university in Nova Scotia is dealing with the coronavirus pandemic:

St. FX

  • All in-person classes are suspended from March 16-20.
  • Online classes will resume March 23 using online or other alternative delivery methods.
  • The laboratory components of some courses may not be able to continue.
  • Residences, dining halls to remain open, but students living on campus who are able to return home are encouraged to do so.
  • Neither the campus nor the academic term have been cancelled at this time.
  • Though in-person classes are suspended, faculty can continue to work from their offices.

Acadia

  • All classes and labs will be suspended from March 16-20.
  • All in-person classes and labs will be cancelled for March 23-April 3.
  • All in-person exams suspended, but the examination period will continue. Adjustments may include take-home exams, additional assignments instead of a final exam, or evaluating based on work completed to date.
  • Residences, dining hall, the library, the fitness centre and Athletics Complex to remain open at this time, but students wishing to return home may do so.
  • Convocation is still proceeding as usual at this time.

CBU

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  • All in-person classes are suspended from March 16-18.
  • Classes already being offered online are not affected and will carry on as usual.
  • All in-person exams suspended. Faculty are being asked to revisit their assessment plans and consider whether take-home or digitally-delivered exams are feasible, or if there are other options that will work.
  • All upcoming events are cancelled until April 30, including the following:
Here are all the events that are cancelled at Cape Breton University as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Here are all the events that are cancelled at Cape Breton University as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Cape Breton University
  • The campus will remain open and services will continue to be offered.
  • Residence buildings will remain open, but guest privileges are suspended.
  • The CBU Fitness Centre is closed.
  • The daycare will remain open.
  • Though in-person classes are suspended, all employees should attend work as usual with social distancing top of mind.
  • Students enrolled in a co-op, practicum, internship or other placement at a location not affected by this situation can continue to attend their placements as normal.
  • All non-essential work-related travel is cancelled effective immediately, this includes domestic and international.

Dalhousie University/University of King’s College

  • All classes are paused from March 16-20. Online instruction to resume on Monday, March 23.
  • All in-person classes, in-person labs and in-person exams will not resume this term.
  • Instructors will be confirming plans for distance course continuation and exams with students by Wednesday, March 18.
  • Clinical placements, research activities, co-op work placements and King’s journalism workshops (online only) are continuing.
  • Residence buildings and dining halls will remain open. Students living in residence have until March 22 to move out.
  • Dalplex, university libraries and learning commons spaces, Student Health and Wellness, Registrar’s offices and Student Accounts will remain open.
  • All non-essential university events are cancelled or postponed until June 1 at a minimum. This includes Dalhousie Convocation and King’s Encaenia ceremonies scheduled for May 2020.
  • All non-essential university travel is suspended until June 1 at a minimum.

SMU

  • All in-person classes suspended from March 16-20.
  • None of the classes, including examinations, will resume as face-to-face instruction at the end of the class suspension period (March 23 – end of term).
  • The university will maintain all operations during this time period, including research activity, residences, and residence-related services such as the dining hall.
  • All field courses and experiences are cancelled through the end of June.
  • All university-travel outside of Canada is to be cancelled until further notice. There will be no reimbursement for university travel commencing after March 13, 2020, and no travel advances provided. Expenses associated with international travel cancellation will be reimbursed and should be managed through existing processes.
  • All on-campus university events are cancelled until April 30.

MSVU

  • All in-person classes are suspended for the rest of the term. Classes will continue online.
  • All in-person exams are suspended. Faculty are being asked to revisit their assessment plans and consider whether take-home or digitally-delivered exams are feasible for a particular course.
  • The University remains open and services will continue. Employees should attend work as usual.
  • While residences remain open, students living in residence are encouraged to go home if possible.
  • Students in the midst of a co-op, practicum, internship or other placement at a location not affected by this situation can continue to attend their placements as normal.

NSCAD

  • All in-person classes will be suspended for three days this week (Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday) to allow the university to prepare to transition to remote and alternative modes of learning.
  • NSCAD is also suspending access to workshops and studio for this period.
  • The university says that the goal of this temporary suspension is “to support Senate in reviewing our policy to ensure we have the tools to support disruptions to in-class delivery and the implementation of remote forms of learning across all classes and programs.”

Concerned about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

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Health officials say the risk is very low for Canadians, but they caution against travel to affected areas (a list can be found here). If you do travel to these places, they recommend you self-monitor to see whether you develop symptoms and if you do, to contact public health authorities.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing – very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. And if you get sick, stay at home.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.