Mary Immaculate College's Covid-19 Response Team met during the week
ACADEMICS at Mary Immaculate College have been told to urgently devise contingency plans for “delivering module content” in the event of there being on-campus restrictions due to the coronavirus.
While there are no restrictions at place at present, MIC president, Professor Eugene Wall wrote to academics and other staff in recent days following a meeting of the MIC Covid-19 Response Team.
“The response plan of the College is based on a number of key operational areas in which potential risks arise. In each instance, the Review Team is anticipating what may need to be done that is consistent with the current national strategy for managing the spread of Covid-19 in a containment context,” states the letter which has been seen by the Limerick Leader.
“Planning extends to scenarios that will emerge if the national strategy is escalated. This means in effect, that the College is taking a short-term, medium-term and long-term approach to contingency planning. This also follows from awareness that the situation is currently very fluid and liable to change on a day-to-day basis,” adds the letter.
In a follow-up email from another senior manager, academics have been told to urgently come up with contingency plans in the event of restrictions being introduced.
“Obviously, we will be relying on Moodle (Learning Management System) as the main method of delivering module content. We have a very good rate of usage of Moodle in the College, so this should not be a problem. However, we do need to hear from those members of staff who are currently not using Moodle to deliver content; OR members of staff who do not have access to a PC or laptop at home; AND/OR members of staff who do not any or only have limited broadband access,” states the correspondence.
In addition to lectures, alternative plans are also being drawn up by MIC in relation to exams and asessments.
“We are aware that there are planned end of semester examinations scheduled. We are keen to work with members of staff to find alternative forms of assessment to end of semester examinations. This could take the form of additional coursework or time-limited Moodle examinations. In addition, there needs to be contingency for accommodating currently planned in-class assessments such as presentations, oral exams etc., where these are used to calculate the final grade.”
All faculty members have been told to prioritise the development of contingency plans and to submit any proposals by 2pm on Monday.
“Although there is no decision at present to limit access to campus and we are to continue as normal, I would urge everyone to prepare as much as possible. Hopefully we will not need it, but it will make things much easier if we have contingency plans and plenty of materials / alternatives in place to ensure that our students can achieve all of their learning outcomes successfully,” states the letter which was sent to personnel in Limerick and Thurles.
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