More departments move all classes online

Language departments, Social Science and Philosophy, Business, Natural Sciences and Engineering have all announced the cancellation of in-person classes

More departments are moving all classes online, despite College stating that seminars and labs will continue to take place in person. Language departments and the schools of Social Science and Philosophy, Business, Natural Sciences and Engineering have all announced the cancellation of in-person tutorials and labs.

Trinity News reported yesterday that the departments of Film, Classics, History and Sociology were halting all onsite lectures, tutorials and seminars from 9am today. The announcements followed College’s decision to cancel all in-person lectures, however, in an email from the provost, students were told that “tutorials, seminars and laboratory practicals will all continue to be given in the usual fashion while using social distancing protocols”.

The School of Languages, Literatures and Cultural studies and all departments within the school, including European Studies, French, German, Irish, Italian, Near Middle Eastern Studies, Russian and Slavonic, Spanish, are postponing tutorials as well as lectures until Monday. In an email statement, the department said: “This will allow us to review and plan for online delivery to commence in coming days.” 

The statement continued: “Departments will communicate with you directly by the end of the week / early next week indicating which classes will be delivered online and which, for practical reasons, may need to continue being in classrooms.” 

In an earlier email from the Italian department, students were told that all Italian tutorials and lectures  would be suspended until the end of term. 

Class representatives of the School of Social Sciences and Philosophy received an email declaring that tutorials, labs and seminars will be cancelled “until further notice”. Delivering these classes will be at the discretion of the tutor. Some may be delivered online, while others may not take place at all. “Plans for tutorials will be sent to you by the end of this week,” the email read.

Currently there are no plans for the school to suspend exams, however, the school is treating the possibility as a “plausible scenario”. The statement read: “Should that occur, lectures for modules with final exams will have alternative plans for final assessments, which may include moving exams online and having it timed, or doing a take-home assessment. Please not that this means there might be changes in how the lecturer marks it.”

The Dean of the Business School decided this afternoon to cancel all on-site tutorials and move them online. An email to second year Finance students said: “Our teaching assistants are busy getting this set up at very short notice and will run the tutorials on Blackboard Collaborate from tomorrow morning. This is a live link, you need to join the class online during the timetabled tutorial time and ask questions in real time, so this is the closest thing to a live class.”

Second year Marketing students were told that they will be receiving a combination of lecture slides with voice over, pre-recorded lectures, and live-streamed lectures. Instead of in-class tutorials, some tutorial content and a series of discussion questions will be made available through Blackboard. 

Students studying Business and a language were told today that all lectures and tutorials will be delivered online for the remainder of the term, “effective immediately”. The email statement circulated to students said: “Your module leaders are preparing for online delivery of lectures and tutorials and will be in touch as soon as possible.” 

The School of Natural Sciences announced that all teaching will move online, including “lectures, tutorials, practicals and field courses” . In the case of the continued spread of the coronavirus and the exams are disrupted, the department said: “We are making plans to run exams remotely on Blackboard in that same week in case it comes to that.” 

The School of Engineering suspended all in-person tutorials and labs from 2pm today for the rest of term. In an email to students, the department said that they will “try to follow the current timetable as best we can”. 

The statement continued: “We have to accept that we may not be able to cover all content, however, every effort will be made so that all modules can deliver the planned learning outcomes.” The department hopes to start delivering modules online from Monday. 

The World Health Organisation has this afternoon declared the coronavirus a pandemic. Ireland has recorded 34 confirmed cases of the virus, with the first person in Ireland dying of this virus this afternoon.

College established a coronavirus working group to monitor the situation in January. Trinity has made hand sanitiser available throughout campus and recommends regular hand washing to avoid infection. College has advised that students returning from high-risk areas should self-quarantine for 14 days. 

This article was updated at 5:30pm, March 11, to include the announcement that the School of Social Sciences and Philosophy has also suspended all in-person classes until further notice. 

Aisling Grace

Aisling Grace was the Editor-in-Chief of the 66th Volume of Trinity News. She was also formerly Online Editor and Deputy News Editor.