Covid-19 and University Life Initiatives and Good Practices of the Network

Published on May 4, 2020 Updated on May 4, 2020

In times of pandemic, higher education institutions around the world have been forced to review their organization and functioning to ensure the continuity, at least in part, of university life and the services rendered to their student audience. They are all forced to reinvent their daily lives in order to meet the challenges posed by the coronavirus, especially those that have had to completely close their campuses.

While the question of continuity of courses and examinations seems to be at the center of current concerns, it must be remembered that the life of a university is not limited to teaching and that many other departments and services are also indispensable.
So, there are many questions that universities are required to answer, sometimes without much conviction or certainty for lack of benchmarks:

By what means are the courses provided? How are teachers trained in the different teaching modalities imposed by the crisis? How are exams and thesis defences now carried out? What measures have been put in place to mitigate possible discrimination related to Internet access and computer equipment? How are people with disabilities still kept in the loop? How are the international relations departments reviewing their activities? How are conferences or symposia rethought and/or reorganized? Have activities related to community service (the university's third mission) been reviewed? Can pedagogical approaches such as service-learning still be practiced? What is the impact of the pandemic on the way research activity is carried out? How do we continue to ensure the functioning of university representation and consultation mechanisms? Does campus ministry or chaplaincy still have a role to play? Has the university been led to turn to new partners (stakeholders)?

In a spirit of sharing and mutual help, IFCU is launching a call for initiatives to collect examples of "good practices" implemented within member universities in order to continue to keep their institutions alive, even outside the walls. Through this call, IFCU hopes to help communicate some of the actions undertaken by its universities, which sometimes prove to be remarkable and can be a source of inspiration for many others.
IFCU will circulate information on the initiatives received progressively, through different supports (website, special Covid newsletter, Facebook...). A final compendium of all member universities’ good practices will be prepared and distributed electronically by September 2020.

Please send your initiatives (all formats accepted - text, images, videos-) to :
Mr. Loïc Roche, and
Dr. Montserrat Alom,