Update: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that, if classes cannot be delivered online or rescheduled until January, they may be held in person if they meet the recommendations of the public health officer.
The University of Fraser Valley’s fall semester for 2020 will be almost exclusively online to limit the spread of COVID-19.
“Nearly all” courses, assessments and exams will take place outside the physical classroom, according to a newsletter sent to alumni and donors on Thursday, May 21.
“Any classes or experiential learning that cannot be delivered online will be deferred to January 2021,” the news release says. “If rescheduling isn’t possible, the University will evaluate face-to-face instructional possibilities, provided we are able to do so while following the recommendations of the Public Health Officer.”
The university has made the decision on the direction of Bonnie Henry; the B.C. Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training and the B.C. Go Forward plan.
UFV is not alone in this shift to online learning for the fall, as all post-secondary institutions will be operating under a similar framework.
Counsellors, academic and financial aid advisors, enrolment assistants, tutors and librarians will all be carrying on their job duties in a virtual format.
“Online tutorials, workshops, videos, and webinars are some of the ways students are receiving the support and information they need,” the news release says. “As we look to fall, we’ll be expanding what is available, particularly in ways to help students connect with one another. This will include virtual events, online clubs and associations, peer mentorship programs, virtual lounges, and more.”
The university has also rallied its staff, as well as its surrounding communities, for donations to help students who are financially struggling through their Student Emergency Fund. So far over $93,000 has been raised.