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Updated: 6.00pm, Friday 27 March

The University is closed until further notice.

Teaching and assessment will be online/remote for the rest of the semester.

Live Q&A online sessions

We will be running a series of online Q&A sessions to help answer current and incoming students' queries and support you at this challenging time:

Check out our upcoming Virtual Events here

EXAMS: New Exams schedule

  1. Revised Exam Timetable will be available online here from 12pm Friday, 27 March.
  2. Assessments will run from the 21st of April to the 15th of May with only two exam slots per day, and in most cases you can expect to have only one scheduled assessment per day.
  3. Assessments will take a variety of forms including online examinations run through Blackboard, Multiple-Choice Questions via Blackboard, take-home open-book exams, presentations delivered remotely via video, and more.
  4. For a limited number of programmes, the grade of some First and Second Year modules will not include an ‘end-of-semester’ examination.
  5. For students of Shannon College of Hotel Management, exam schedules will differ and will be published by Shannon College on Monday 30th March.

Please visit the Examinations Office website to download your Personalised Exam Timetable today.

As all assessments will be remote or in the form of an alternative assessment there are some important points you need to bear in mind.

EXAMS: Guidelines for remote and alternative assessments

  • It is your responsibility to ensure that you have access to the necessary technology to complete your assessment. In most cases this includes access to a PC or laptop, and broadband connectivity; in some cases specific software will be required – your Module Leader will advise you of this. If you have difficulty accessing the required technology you should notify your Module Leader as soon as possible next week.
  • You are strongly advised to test your access to Blackboard and any relevant software on your home computer/laptop prior to the scheduled examination slot.
  • If your modules are being assessed via an online scheduled assessment, your Module Leader will contact your class to organise a test run prior to the actual assessment date. You are strongly advised to participate in this test run in order to satisfy yourself that you can connect to Blackboard and carry out all tasks required on your PC/Laptop.
  • For timed online assessments, you are required to log in to Blackboard at least 15 minutes before the commencement of each assessment.
    • Each timed assessment will be no more than two hours long and where you are required to write an essay and subsequently upload it to Blackboard, an additional 15 minutes will be added to the time allotted for the examination for the purpose of uploading your assignment. Where you are required to scan (using mobile phone or hand scanner) drawings/diagrams completed during the examination, and upload to Blackboard, an additional 30 minutes will be added to the time allotted for the purpose of uploading your assignment.
    • A contact email and phone number will be provided to you should you encounter any difficulties when uploading your assessment material.
      • You are expected to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and honesty when completing assessments at NUI Galway. Module Leaders reserve the right to follow up with a student by interview if there is any concern in relation to the integrity of the assessment. Any irregularities of conduct may be reported to the Exam Security Group as provided for in ‘Procedures for dealing with Breaches of Examination Regulations’.

These are unprecedented times and we recognise that being physically isolated from campus adds to the normal pressure you may be feeling at exam time. All of your Lecturers and the Support Service teams are continuing to work to support you through this examination session.  

For specific queries on individual assessments, please contact your Module Leader in the first instance.

All support and guidance on online assessments, on technology-related queries and on general student supports will be available at one central online hub: http://www.nuigalway.ie/student-life/student-support/

Please continue to check this website throughout the assessment period for updates.

Where can I get guidance on adjusting to Online Learning

Some helpful advice has been provided by the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) at the following links:

What does Online Teaching entail?

Teaching recommences Monday 23 March with lectures delivered via Blackboard for the rest of the semester. By now, the majority of modules have a Blackboard page with relevant course material for the coming weeks uploaded. Lecture notes, Powerpoint presentations and videos have been uploaded and further material may be delivered by recorded video or live lecture via Blackboard Collaborate on the relevant Blackboard pages. Log on to the relevant Blackboard page for each of your modules to access course material.

This may be in the form of:

  • a live lecture
  • a recorded lecture
  • or your lecturer may be available via Blackboard to assist you with any queries on the lecture material.

How will the closure impact Exams?

Examinations in halls will not run this May. All academic units are preparing for the delivery of assessments by alternative means. Where, for the purposes of professional accreditation, particular modes of examination which would require an examination bringing students together in a hall or in a similar setting are necessary, please bring this to the attention of your Head of School as soon as possible so that we can plan accordingly as best we can. We see the week of 16 March as giving some space and time for colleagues to consider alternative modes of delivery and assessment of modules. It is anticipated that details of the alternative assessment modes will be available by Monday 23 March.

Please be mindful that there is a wide range of assessment types available. These are listed in the Marks and Standards document.

Additional material that may help in the formulation of alternative assessment can be found on the CELT Sharepoint site. Colleagues should be particularly mindful of students requiring special supports and consider their particular needs in the design of assessment by alternative means. In particular, please alert your Head of School of instances where you believe such special supports will be required.

Alternative assessments:
We accept that significant flexibility will be required with end-of-year assessments, and we will hold a briefing, by conference call, for all Heads of School to discuss acceptable parameters on Wednesday, 18 March at 10.00 a.m.

A detailed agenda will be circulated along with dial in details today (Monday, 16 March). The Exams Office is liaising with colleagues in other universities, exploring potential assessment options and the use of exam tools. Please also be mindful that, with regard to assessment, the needs of public health and the welfare of our students and staff will always come first and that we will need to be flexible and understanding in this regard as the current situation evolves.

Deferrals:
The policy relating to deferral of exams will be reviewed in the context of the current situation with a view to offering flexibility to students where necessary in the interests of public health and the welfare of our students and staff.

Your modules will be initiating alternative modes of assessment for end-of-semester exams. This task has required a lot of creative thinking and detailed planning to ensure the majority of modules will be examined in the coming exam session. Examinations will be conducted remotely using a range of exam modes including online exams run through Blackboard, Multiple-Choice Questions, take-home open-book exams, continuous assessment, projects, presentations delivered remotely via video, and more. For a limited number of programmes, the grade of some First and Second Year modules will not include an ‘end-of-semester’ examination. Details of module assessments will be available on most module pages on Blackboard by the end of this week.

Please be aware that some online assessments will need to be extended beyond the traditional examination period to facilitate staggered online assessment and to allow sufficient time for essays, projects and open-book exams to be completed.

The Examinations Office will issue a new exam timetable later this week. Most exams will remain 2 hours in duration with 30 mins added for upload.

For students of Shannon College, a separate email will be forthcoming from the Head of Shannon College regarding any differences in exam arrangements that may apply.

Please be assured that our primary concern is to maintain the integrity and rigour of the examinations process, and the alternative assessments provided for each module will reflect appropriately the same level of effort required for traditional exams based in exam halls. The quality of your NUI Galway degree is paramount and will not be affected by an alternative mode of assessment.

Exam security will be protected by asking all students to complete a disclaimer statement at the start of each exam and each module leader reserves the right to follow up with a student by interview if there is any concern in relation to the integrity of the exam.

Advice for Postgraduate Research Students

Research should continue where possible, with supervisors contactable by email.

Preparations for annual reviews are ongoing with online submission of reports and ‘virtual’ meetings with Graduate Research Committees expected.

Electronic means will be used to facilitate submission and examination of research theses and plans are also being developed to hold vivas remotely.

Important advice for students living away from home 

As the spread of COVID-19 continues to escalate, we have been asked by public health officials to reiterate the advice below:

NUI Galway students from Ireland living away from home (on campus or elsewhere in Galway)

You are advised to disperse immediately and to go home. This is in the interest of yourselves, your friends and your family.

Should you need to self-isolate in the coming days and weeks, your homeplace is the best place for you to do so in a supportive environment.

In cases where you cannot move home due to vulnerable people in high-risk categories living at home, we encourage you to seek out other locations where you can be supported by family (e.g. siblings, aunts, uncles), neighbours or close friends.

If you have any health concerns or become unwell/require medical care, then phone your home GP or HSELive (1850 24 1850).

Teaching and assessment will be online/remote for the rest of the semester.

NUI Galway students from overseas still located in Ireland

We have consistently recommended to international students that they give significant consideration to returning home. We understand that this may no longer be possible.

For overseas students who are not or cannot travel home at present, please:

  • If you haven’t already done so via the online survey, make yourself known to the International Office, by emailing: international@nuigalway.ie 

Should you have any health concerns or have any urgent/emergency medical issues:

  • Phone advice is available during daytime hours of 9am-1pm and 2-5pm, please contact either: 091-494337 or 083-3250034. If you are unable to get through on either phone line, please email healthunit@nuigalway.ie to arrange a call back.
  • If outside those hours you have any concerns, but are well and don't have any symptoms, then phone HSELive (1850 24 1850).
  • If outside those hours you are unwell/have symptoms, then please see the below emergency out-of-hours contacts

Emergency Out-of-Hours Service

(Please note that these are NOT advice lines, and are for urgent/emergency medical care, and also, that there is a charge for these out-of-hours services):

  • Monday-Thursday (after 5pm) – contact emergency number: 087-2623997
  • Saturday, Sunday & Bank Holidays (Daytime 8am-6pm) – Citydoc, Bon Secour Hospital: 091-758008
  • Friday, Saturday & Sunday (Evening 6pm-8am) Galway City GP Rota: 087-7744430

I have a received a notice (19 March) from NUI Galway campus accommodation to return home if it possible and safe to do so. What if I need to stay?

If is it not possible to return home, we ask you to e-mail Susan.clancy@nuigalway.ie or call 091-527112 and we will make arrangements for you to continue residing in campus accommodation. It may be necessary to move room/accommodation block.

Refunds (if you do vacate)
We will be refunding the remainder of the academic term accommodation fee from the date of Monday March  16th for students who vacate. Deposits and utility pre-payment, less final bills will also be refunded. We will deal with refunds as quickly as possible bearing in mind that our immediate priority is to respond to this national emergency call. To help us process refunds, can you please ensure that we have your correct bank account details on your student portal: https://corribvillage.securedaccommodationnow.com/student/.

Access to campus

The actions we take as individuals in the coming weeks will have a major impact on the spread of the virus in our community. We have closed the campus for teaching activities and all events, following Government advice, and have instructed students to return home where advisable and act on the HSE advice to minimise the spread of the virus.

It has been decided to close the Library and other facilities in line with Government advice. For details of available Library services during this time, please see the Library’s Online Services web page. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact library@nuigalway.ie.

What does the closer mean for student placements

Students currently on placement in Ireland are advised to follow the official advice given wherever they are on placement. They should also be mindful of all advice from the HSE and follow appropriate protocols around social distancing, etc. Any student who, for whatever reason, feels unable to complete their placement will be facilitated with alternative academic work by the relevant unit.

We are requesting that ALL medical students should remain off clinical placement (both hospital and community) until Monday 30 March. We will review this evolving situation on 27 March and will issue an update at that point. The only exception remains the 4th year Nursing and Midwifery intern students who are to remain in placement. 

Message to Students from Presidents of Irish Universities and Institutes of Technology, Monday 16 March

Dear student,

We have taken the unusual decision to write to you collectively in these extraordinary times. Your health and safety and that of our wider community is our primary concern, which is why we have all instigated revised at-distance teaching and assessment methods for the coming weeks.

We appreciate that you are all aware of the health implications of COVID-19 and at this stage are taking action to limit its spread yourselves. To restate the advice from the HSE, please follow the guidelines around social distancing, maintaining a distance of at least 2 metres between yourself and other people. We also particularly ask that you stay away from crowded places in the weeks ahead and limit your own social interactions.

This does not mean that you should avoid the company of others completely. In fact, it is important for your mental wellbeing to keep in contact with friends and family; just please maintain social distancing by completely foregoing meeting in groups, especially social gatherings or party environments.

You should also make a point of looking out for each other by checking in with other students who might be lonely or isolated by phoning them, or Facetime, Skype, Zoom, or whatever system you use.  You could also offer your services to volunteer organisations to collect shopping or prescriptions for elderly neighbours or walk their dogs.

Small social gatherings with enough space between participants to follow the HSE social distancing guidelines are still possible. But any events or activities that involve crowds should be avoided until further notice.

We ask you to do this for three reasons. Firstly, to protect yourselves from infection. Secondly, to slow down the spread of COVID-19 in order to protect at risk people, some of whom may die if they contract the virus. And thirdly, to reduce pressure on our healthcare system. There are close to a quarter of a million students in Irish Higher Education and we are in a strong position to reduce the spread of the virus by acting collectively.

It is important to remember that if you do contract the virus, your health could be severely affected, and you pose a great danger to the older members of society and those with weak immune systems. You could even be unwittingly responsible for putting others at increased risk.

Scientific and public health advice tells us that it will take some time before COVID-19 can be contained. You can play your part as an individual by keeping yourself healthy so that the healthcare system can continue to function.

As a student, you are in a unique position. You are being taught online in many cases and do not have to come into work as many others have to do. All these precautions mean little if you do not stay away from crowds.

Reputable information that is constantly updated is available from www.hse.ie or from the HSE (@HSELive) and Department of Health (@roinnslainte) Twitter feeds.

Be kind to each other and take care of yourselves and each other. Let’s give each other the space to find our way through these challenging times and the time to find humanity and meaning here too.

Yours sincerely,

  • Amanda McCloat (Acting President, St. Angela’s College)
  • Andrew Deeks (President, UCD)
  • Annie Doona (President, IADT)
  • Barry O’Connor (President, CIT)
  • Brendan McCormack (President, IT Sligo)
  • Brendan O’Donnell (President, IT Tralee)
  • Brian MacCraith (President, DCU)
  • Ciarán Ó Catháin  (President, AIT)
  • Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, (President, NUI Galway)
  • David Fitzpatrick (President, TU Dublin)
  • Des Fitzgerald (President, University of Limerick)
  • Michael Hannon (Acting President, GMIT)
  • Michael Mulvey (President, DkIT)
  • Patricia Mulcahy (President, IT Carlow)
  • Patrick O’Shea (President, UCC)
  • Patrick Prendergast (Provost, Trinity College Dublin)
  • Paul Hannigan (President, LYIT)
  • Philip Nolan (President, Maynooth University)
  • Vincent Cunnane (President, LIT)
  • With the support of: Lorna Fitzpatrick, President, USI

Important update for International and NUI Galway Students studying abroad

The Department of Foreign Affairs has advised extreme caution around travel to other EU countries. Correspondingly, NUI Galway students studying in all EU countries at this time have been contacted to return home. 

In anticipation that further advice will issue at a national level regarding Irish university students abroad, the University has recommended that all NUI Galway students remaining abroad consider returning home.

At the request of the Government, all teaching, gatherings, and non-essential meetings, in the University are cancelled until further notice.

More information here.  

What does the University closure mean for students?

Students should not turn up on campus for their scheduled lectures. Lectures will return online only from the 23 March.

We appreciate your patience over the past week as we prepared to move lectures online. No one expected or welcomed this interruption, and we are committed to continue with this semester’s teaching and assessment, sympathetic to the disruption that you are facing. We understand your need for greater clarity around teaching and assessment.

What does the University closure mean for international students and NUI Galway students studying abroad?

Scroll down for advice relevant to international students and NUI Galway students abroad.

Completing your studies and assessments

Teaching has resumed and it will be delivered online. Please keep an eye on Blackboard, communications from your School / College and on the University Alerts page for information about how to access your lectures, seminars etc.

Assessments and final exams will also take place at-distance. There are a very few circumstances where a component of an assessment needs students to be present in Galway. These assessments will be delayed or run in a different format to ensure everyone can participate.

The specific details of how to access your teaching will be shared with you by your Programme Directors and Module Organisers. They will also give you more information about how you will be assessed at the end of the semester and year.

Research students should discuss appropriate arrangements for continuing your work with your primary supervisor.

Student support services are continuing to work but in most cases this will be through telephone or online contact. The student residences remain open for as long as needed but please be aware that the library will be closed and on campus catering provision will be significantly reduced.

As the campus has closed and teaching and assessment will all be online for the remainder of this academic year you are encouraged to return to your home and family as soon as possible where this is feasible and safe.

International Student Welfare

If you have concerns and questions about COVID-19 or other aspects of this situation then please contact the International Affairs Office where staff are available to help you.

You can e-mail reception using international@nuigalway.ie or Louise Kelly, International Student Officer using louise.kelly@nuigalway.ie

Alternatively, during office hours you can call the International Affairs Office reception on 091 495277 or Louise Kelly on 091 493581

If you need urgent assistance you can call the 24/7 assistance line 086 8576152

If you remain in Galway and have health concerns or urgent/emergency medical issues – the Student Health Unit can be contacted for phone advice on week days between 9.00am-1.00pm and 2.00-5.00pm, please call either: 091-494337 or 083-3250034. If you are unable to get through on either phone line, please email healthunit@nuigalway.ie to arrange a call back.

If you do have any ongoing health needs/underlying medical conditions that either require regular medical care, or put you in a higher risk category in relation to Covid-19 then you should consider returning home if it is safe to do so.

Visiting, Placement and Erasmus Students

For visiting students, if you decide to return to your home country, we will support you to do this. You will be supported to access alternative routes to complete your studies for the three remaining weeks of term and any requisite assessments.

If you do decide to do this, please let us know by contacting the Erasmus/Study Abroad/College contact as appropriate. For further advice on alternative routes to study and assessment, please contact the relevant College.

If you are not already in touch with your lecturers about continued coursework and assessment, please contact the relevant College administration office for further guidance.

If you have any non-academic questions relating to your Erasmus or Study Abroad placement you can use the following e-mail contacts

Accessing Library services during the University closure

The James Hardiman Library is closed and will remain closed until the University reopens, on 30 March at the earliest.

Students and staff can find details of available services at https://library.nuigalway.ie/usingthelibrary/onlineservices/

Accessing IT services during the University closure

For advice on how to access University web services remotely, please visit our Remote Access to IT Services webpage

Information on support for students living on campus

Chaplaincy
The Chaplaincy Service is available to support students and staff remotely during normal working hours. We are also available outside of working hours, when required.The Chaplaincy Office on 6 Distillery Road is closed. The Chapel building is open to provide a supportive space for students, where the normal requirements regarding COVID-19 are to be followed.
Our contact details: 
Fr Ben Hughes, Chaplain, ben.hughes@nuigalway.ie / 087 203 7538
Jimmy McGovern, Seas Suas Manager, jimmy.mcgovern@nuigalway.ie / 083 062 6898

Student Counselling
NUI Galway Student Counselling is continuing to operate, remotely online or by phone. For all current users of the Student Counselling Service we are continuing to offer counselling online.
For all enquiries email counselling@nuigalway.ie

Accommodation and Welfare
The Accommodation and Welfare Office will continue to support students remotely during normal working hours.
For accommodation support: teresa.kelly@nuigalway.ie  / +353 91 492364
For support from the Financial Aid Fund: una.mcdermott@nuigalway.ie / +353 91 495282

Student Health Unit

The Student Health Unit does not currently operate a walk-in service.

NUI Galway Students from Ireland

You are advised to disperse immediately and make your way home. This is in the interests of yourselves, your friends and your families.

If you have any health concerns or become unwell/require medical care, then contact your home GP by phone. If you have any concerns around COVID-19, contact the HSE public advice line 1850 241850.

NUI Galway Students from outside Ireland

If you have any ongoing health needs/underlying medical conditions that either require regular medical care, or put you in a higher risk category in relation to COVID-19, then we recommend that you give significant consideration to returning home based on the public health advice of your home country.

For our international students who are not or cannot travel home at present, should you have any health concerns or have any urgent/emergency medical issues -

  • to avail of phone advice during daytime hours of 9.00am-1.00pm and 2.00-5.00pm
  • please contact either: 091-494337 or 083-3250034
  • If you are unable to get through on either phone line, please email healthunit@nuigalway.ie to arrange a call back.

Please do keep in communication, based on public health advice, with your community in Ireland and at home.  You are part of our community and we want you to stay safe and healthy.

Emergency Out-of-Hours Service

(Please note that these are NOT advice lines, and are for urgent/emergency medical care, and also, that there is a charge for these out-of-hours services)       

  • Monday-Thursday evenings/nights – contact emergency number: 087-2623997
  • Saturday, Sunday & Bank Holidays (Daytime 8am-6pm) – Citydoc, Bon Secour Hospital: 091-758008 
  • Friday, Saturday & Sunday (Evening 6pm-8am) Galway City GP Rota  087-7744430