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Update from Vice-Provost/Chief Academic Officer, Senior Lecturer & Dean of Undergraduate Studies to staff

30 July 2020

Dear Colleagues,

I hope this finds you well in these challenging times and that the summer offers some opportunity for relaxation and a proper break.

I am writing to you with proposed teaching arrangements for incoming JF students. When the government recently announced a further delay in the release of calculated grades for Leaving Certificate students it became clear that we would not be able to start teaching for incoming undergraduates at the same time as all other students on Monday 28 September. In order to minimise uncertainty for students who had applied to Trinity we quickly communicated on the College website and social media the revised start date for incoming undergraduate students of Monday 5 October, one week later than previously decided. Orientation week for incoming undergraduates will now commence on Monday 28 September.

Despite this further and unexpected delay in the start of the academic year for incoming undergraduates we must ensure that they are not further disadvantaged and receive the full 11 weeks of teaching in semester one. The best way to ensure this is to teach JF students through study week in week 7 of semester one, the week commencing Monday 9 November. This way they will have caught up with all other cohorts by week 8 and end the semester together with all other students.

This means that for those teaching JF students there will be some teaching during study week, which under normal circumstances is protected for research. This is regrettable, but unavoidable and for students and staff the least disruptive option for catching up. We have consulted with IFUT on this proposal and they agree that under the circumstances this is the most viable option. We have agreed that classes that will normally be delivered face to face can exceptionally be delivered online during this week where lecturers have commitments that will prevent them from being in College that week.

We are mindful that this request comes at a very demanding time for colleagues and on top of a lot of additional work caused by the pandemic. We are very appreciative of the exemplary commitment of colleagues all around College who go many extra miles to ensure the full delivery of the curriculum and the best student experience possible under continuing challenging circumstances.

We wish you the very best for the remaining summer,

Jürgen Barkhoff, Vice-Provost/Chief Academic Officer
Kevin Mitchell, Senior Lecturer & Dean of Undergraduate Studies