Rector's Statement

Rector's Statement posted on April 3, 2020.

Apr 03, 2020

Dear members of the UPC community,

First, I wish you and your beloved ones to be in good health and spirits.

Since March 12, we have been in close contact with the deans of the diverse Schools, student’s representatives and UPC employees in coordination with the rest of the Catalan Universities and with the Generalitat of Catalonia. The goal is to provide the means to maintain all possible activities on-line and at the same time to inform you, in a clear and objective way, about the diverse changes occurring in a daily basis on the evolution of the health crisis

The recent extension of the alarm status and the data on the evolution of the epidemic in our country, suggests that the situation of confinement will be extended and that resumption of activity will be gradual.

Accordingly, the Executive Board, after consultation with the deans, has resolved to take the necessary measures to ensure a security framework for the members of our community:

1. Given the uncertainty in the academic calendar and the high probability that normal academic activity will not be resumed during the rest of the semester, suspend any face-to-face learning and teaching activity for the second semester 2019-2020, starting on March 13 and until at the end of semester. All remaining teaching activity will be carried out on-line.

2. The Governing Council of last April 1st, through Agreement no. CG / 2020/02/05 ratified the Rector's instruction on the provision of the necessary measures to guarantee on-line teaching which, together with Rector's Resolution no. 533/2020 of March 12th, set the action framework for schools to plan all academic activities, adopting them to their own characteristics.

3. In regard to the assessment process and procedures and given the high probability that they may not be face-to-face, teaching staff in charge of the diverse subjects must prepare an assessment proposal to be carried out by the students on-line, in accordance with the guidelines and requirements established by the diverse Schools. However, there is still a possibility to have a face-to-face assessment period for second semester subjects between the end of June and if necessary, in July.

4. Work is underway to ensure that those practical activities that have been postponed by the alarm status, such as TFG / TFM, etc ..., or some kind of essential fieldwork for awarding the degree could be done during the months of October and/or November. These will be considered within the same academic year, without the need for new registration and with measures of flexibility for the continuation of the studies in the following academic year.

5. Coordination mechanisms with the other Universities and relevant administrations are maintained and intensified in regard to issues that are transversal to the university system, such as the general regulation of the academic calendar and certain aspects related to student assessment.

6. We are also aware that there are students who for different reasons may experience difficulties in pursuing their studies on-line. In order to overcome these difficulties, we are enabling mechanisms to ensure an adequate follow up for all students under these circumstances. To expedite these mechanisms, it is necessary to claim being in this situation and report to the dean of their School as soon as possible.

The main message that we want to convey to UPC students and their families as well as to the public, is a message of peace of mind. The UPC executive board and the School executive teams will continue to work together to ensure the least possible impact of present circumstances on students learning process, in order to guarantee the acquisition of the corresponding competences for a successful completion of the academic year.

Francesc Torres, Rector of the UPC

Barcelona, April 3, 2020