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University of Alberta suspends classes, moves online for rest of term

EDMONTON — The University of Alberta says it is shutting down classes for the rest of the winter term and moving them online. It says the winter session is to end as scheduled April 8.
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EDMONTON — The University of Alberta says it is shutting down classes for the rest of the winter term and moving them online.

It says the winter session is to end as scheduled April 8.

In-person classes and exams had already been suspended on Friday and through the weekend.

Students will be able to log in to get access to their courses, course information and course content starting Tuesday.

All classes will remain suspended on Monday to give instructors time to move their material online.

There will be no in-person exams this term.

Andrew Sharman, vice-president of facilities and operations, said details regarding exams will be worked out in the next few days.

“We’re looking very closely at how exams will be delivered in alternative formats. As soon as we finalize details later this coming week, we’ll share that information right away,” he said in a statement Saturday.

The university says it plans to keeps campuses and residences open, and all services are to remain available

“Making the transition from in-person classes to remote delivery will ensure that our students can complete the academic term and meet their academic goals,” president David Turpin said in the statement.

“In addition to protecting the health of our students and community, our goal is to maintain the U of A’s quality learning experience in the midst of a rapidly evolving situation.”

Sharman said registration for the fall 2020 and winter 2021 terms is to go ahead as planned starting Monday.

“We made these decisions to ... recognize the pressures faced by a large institution in the face of an unprecedented situation,” Sharman said.

The university says that, based on recent direction from the World Health Organization and medical authorities, it is suspending all upcoming university-related travel for students and staff outside  Canada.

It is "strongly recommending" that all students studying abroad make arrangements to come home, regardless of the risk rating in their current location.

The school is also suspending all campus events of 250 or more people.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 14, 2020

The Canadian Press