Planning for Fall 2020 Update

May 13, 2020

The Queen’s University community is giving its full attention to the coming year and the university will welcome new and returning students this fall with the same eagerness and excitement as in any other year.

Queen’s is working closely with Public Health officials on operational planning for the fall term, and communications will be sent to students, staff, and faculty when final decisions are made. When planning for the fall term, our commitment to the health and wellness of our community, as well as equity, inclusion, and accessibility, will help guide our decision making.  

In preparing for the fall term, we need to ensure we are ready for the likely possibility that we will face significant restrictions on classroom space given the anticipated need for physical distancing measures. As such, we expect most course delivery will need to be done through remote means in the fall and we are accelerating our efforts in planning for remote courses to ensure we are ready to offer the exceptional academic experience Queen’s students have come to expect.

We know that the on-campus student experience is a hallmark of Queen’s, and we continue to explore options to enable as many of our students as possible to be on campus in the fall while adhering to provincial legislation and public health guidelines. Should a significant number of students be able to return to campus in the fall, there may be opportunities for limited, in-person, course-related activities, such as a lab demonstration in a large auditorium, or small in-person seminars or program offerings. 

We also know that some courses and programs will require on-campus components this fall, even if physical distancing measures are still in place in September and classroom space is limited. Programs that have been identified as priorities for consistent on-campus delivery include:

  • The professional programs in Medicine, Nursing, and Rehabilitation Therapy in the Faculty of Health Sciences. These programs require on-campus delivery because of the need for on-site access for clinical skills training.
  • Research graduate master's, PhD, and some professional graduate and second entry programs, such as Law. These programs will likely need a combination of on-campus and remote delivery models to accommodate on-site access needs regarding labs and other critical teaching and research resources that cannot be accessed remotely.

Any on-campus classes, labs, and training would be conducted in accordance with Public Health protocols.

Senior leaders are working closely with Public Health officials to assess options for safe campus operations, including classroom use, office use, and timetabling. This is extremely complex work, and we will provide more detail as we have more information.

We recognize that needs may vary across departments in terms of the infrastructure and expertise needed to prepare for remote learning. The Principal is assessing supports needed to assist with remote delivery and will be working closely with the Centre for Teaching and Learning to help faculty members across the campus.