Clarity demanded on State exams plans as students ‘left too long without answers’

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Urgent clarity is needed on the plans for the State exams during the current pandemic as the current ‘complete vacuum of information’ is leaving young people stressed and distracted. That is according to the Ombudsman for Children Dr Niall Muldoon who has called for a decision to be made on the Leaving and Junior Certificate examinations …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Irish Examiner, 9 April]

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Limerick student campus slammed for not offering refunds

Posted in Governance and administration on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Management at a leading city centre student accommodation complex have been criticised after it emerged they will not be refunding those who return home early. Third level colleges have stopped teaching on site following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, and it’s unlikely any will return until the start of the next semester in the autumn. Remote learning is being facilitated, and it’s meant many students have left …” (more)

[Nick Rabbitts, Limerick Leader, 9 April]

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Students to Get Exam Results Three Weeks Later than Normal, in New Timeline

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Students will have to wait an extra three weeks to hear the results of their summer assessments, as a result of the extension of the exam period and the slew of alternative assessment methods Trinity has put in place. Extracts of an internal memorandum approved by University Council yesterday – obtained by The University Times – reveal that Trinity has pushed back the release of students’ marks and will start releasing them on Monday, June 15th …” (more)

[Aoife Kearins, University Times, 9 April]

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DCU signs on to No Detriment policy

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“More than 3,300 DCU students have signed a petition online safeguarding a ‘No Detriment; policy for third level students. Universities across Ireland have been closed since mid-March to accommodate government social distancing measures and students are yet to receive concrete information as to how this pandemic will affect their final grades …” (more)

[The College View, 9 April]

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Wave of Support for No-Detriment Policy as TDs Back Students

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“The campaign for third level institutions to adopt a ‘No-Detriment’ policy has gained a significant amount of political attention over the last week as universities begin to make clear decisions on the issue. Many parties such as Sinn Féin, the Labour Party and the Social Democrats support the policy on a party-wide level whereas Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil continue to dodge the question towards the relevant department with only few TDs from these parties out-rightly supporting the issue …” (more)

[Adam O’Sullivan, College Tribune, 9 April]

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Coronavirus Ireland: DCU to bring in flexible exam deadlines

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Dublin City University (DCU) is introducing flexible exam deadlines this year after a survey found that one in five of its students faced significant internet access difficulties. It is among the measures being implemented to support students as traditional face-to-face exams give way to online assessments in the face of the Covid-19 crisis …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 9 April]

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Scientists at University of Limerick prepare essential Covid-19 testing solution

Posted in Research on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Scientists at University of Limerick have created a testing solution for Covid-19 amid worldwide shortages of the crucial materials. In response to the global shortage of reagents and extraction kits for Covid-19 testing, scientists at UL’s Bernal Institute, plus the departments of chemical and biological sciences at UL, joined forces with other research centres and institutes to source materials and prepare a testing solution, which has fallen short of supply …” (more)

[Aine Fitzgerald, Limerick Leader, 9 April]

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Trinity gives discretion to adjust marks of final-year students

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Exam chiefs at Trinity College Dublin have been given discretion to adjust the marks of final-year students who feel they did not perform as well as expected because of the Covid-19 crisis. It is part of a ‘safety net’ of measures announced by Trinity in response to difficulties facing students …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 9 April]

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‘What do other students do while State exams are held in September?’ asks ex-education advisor

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“State exams may now be held in late summer or autumn because of the coronavirus. The Irish Times has reported that the Government believes it is unlikely the restrictions will be lifted in time for their designated June 3 start date. Students alternatively may be assessed by predictive marking, but worries surround this option as it has never been done before in Ireland …” (more)

[BreakingNews.ie, 9 April]

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State exams may be delayed until late summer or autumn

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“State exams may now be held in late summer or autumn as the Government believes it is unlikely that Covid-19 restrictions will be lifted in time for the usual June start date. Students have been urged to continue with their studies as senior officials in the Department of Education consider a range of contingency options due to the coronavirus crisis …” (more)

[Jennifer Bray and Éanna Ó Caollaí, Irish Times, 9 April]

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College Has Said No to No Detriment – But Obeyed the Spirit of the Policy

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“The Kinks’ Give The People What They Want was not one of the band’s more successful albums – a sign that giving the people exactly what they want is not always the best course of action. Trinity, of course, is not a band, and a no-detriment policy is not an album – it’s not a catchy enough title anyway …” (more)

[Aoife Kearins, University Times, 8 April]

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Blanket No-Detriment Unlikely in UCD, But New Policies to Better Support Students

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“A Working Group has been established in UCD to negotiate the implementation of revised academic policies. The changes aim to ensure students are not at a disadvantage with their assessments this trimester due to COVID-19 restrictions. This news comes after thousands of students have backed an online petition calling for a ‘No-Detriment’ policy in the university …” (more)

[Conor Capplis, College Tribune, 8 April]

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A fair solution for Leaving Cert students

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Sir, – Emeritus Prof Áine Hyland is correct. If at all possible, the best least-worse solution to this year’s third-level entry is to run the Leaving Certificate examinations. However, if the current restrictions remain into May, it is unlikely that running the Leaving Cert exams in June will be fair, even if possible. Indeed, the awarding of full marks for orals and practicals but not project work may have completely undermined any possible fairness …” (more)

[Peter Lydon, Irish Times, 9 April]

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Trinity to set up Covid-19 research centre

Posted in Research on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Trinity College Dublin is to set up a Covid-19 research hub that will focus on the most urgent scientific breakthroughs needed to address the current pandemic including design of new drugs and a vaccine to combat the virus. The hub will work with doctors from St James’s Hospital, Dublin, other hospitals in Ireland, and established research partners around the world …” (more)

[Kevin O’Sullivan, Irish Times, 9 April]

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Gender Equality in Higher Education

Posted in Governance and administration on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) in its submission to the public consultation of the Citizen’s Assembly on Gender Equality said: ‘The Commission is also concerned about the ongoing lack of gender balance in senior academic posts in Ireland’s higher educational institutions, where there are currently no female university Presidents/Provosts, and where only 24% of Professorships are held by women …'” (more)

[IFUT, 8 April]

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Trinity College exam chiefs given discretion for marking students who did not perform well due to coronavirus crisis

Posted in Teaching on April 9th, 2020 by steve

“Exam chiefs at Trinity College Dublin (TCD) have been given more discretion to adjust the marks of final year students who feel they did not perform as well as expected because of the Covid-19 crisis. It is part of a ‘safety net’ of measures announced by Trinity today in response to difficulties facing students arising from the public health emergency …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 8 April]

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