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Leanne Doty

Brandon University courses going mostly online this fall

By: Harry Callaghan
Posted: July 9, 2020 07:43

Upgrades around campus also implemented to limit spread of COVID-19

Image: File

Brandon University offer almost entirely online and remote instruction in the Fall 2020 term and has updated the Registration Guide with full details for each course.

"We are investing in technology and other supports to continue delivering exceptional learning experiences for students, and our faculty have been working tremendously hard to prepare engaging, innovative courses for this unusual fall," said BU President David Docherty. "Together, we will keep our community safe, we will keep educating and researching, and we will put our shoulders to building an economic and cultural recovery from this pandemic."

Starting in September, the vast majority of Fall Term classes and labs will be offered entirely online and will meet during regularly scheduled slots, at specific days and times. A smaller number of Fall Term classes and labs will be offered online, but without regularly scheduled meeting times. Instructors will provide details for each directly to registered students. A handful of courses or labs are being offered fully in-person, on campus.

"If you haven't already registered, you should register for your classes as soon as possible so that you can get the most up-to-date information directly from your instructor as soon as it is known," said University Registrar Andrea McDaniel, who chaired an administrative working group that assessed each class for in-person requirements.
"For everyone's safety, we are maximizing as much as possible the education that we deliver online this fall, and if it requires in-person attendance, we are strictly following all public health requirements and recommendations," she said. 

Coursework that requires in-person attendance includes, for example, some in Music and Fine Arts were it would impossible to do or to assess the work virtually, as well as labs and practicums that are required by regulatory bodies, such as in Health Studies and Education. A small number of Science labs also require hands-on participation. However, many students will be able to complete their term without setting foot on campus at all.

Significant technology and other investments have been made to ensure high-quality instruction can continue to be delivered this fall. Investments are also being made in campus upgrades, including physical barriers, signage, and personal protective equipment. As well, internal courses and training are being offered through BU's Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology to support faculty who are redeveloping their courses to best take advantage of online delivery.

"I am extremely proud of our faculty and the incredible creativity and energy they have brought to bear on these challenges," President Docherty said. "Students at Brandon University have always benefitted from the relationships we can develop here, through small classes sizes, and those relationships are precisely the strength that will successfully deliver us through to the other side of this pandemic."

Last year, the final weeks of the Winter term were abruptly transitioned online when the coronavirus pandemic swept across the globe. Despite the sudden and unexpected challenge, students were able to complete their classes, and graduates were able to obtain their degrees. Since then, BU has offered fully online courses through the Spring and Summer terms, and signaled early that the Fall term would also be largely online so that faculty and students would be able to begin planning and preparing. 

The new Registration Guide updates provide full details on each course. This includes information on required hands-on or in-person activities, including labs, studios, and practicum placements.

Registration Guide PDFs are posted online - a link is available below.

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