UIC Barcelona, #drivingchange

1. University of the future. Learning without distances

The increasing use of new information technologies in the educational world has opened up a new era for universities, on which we have been reflecting for years and which the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated.

The basis of our model is on-site learning and will continue to be so. We are now modifying and improving the global learning experience, incorporating innovations into online teaching and ensuring that our curricular objectives are met across all our academic programmes. The Blended Learning UIC Barcelona System model is based on a blended and rotational system for students to alternate on-site classes with online classes, prioritising on-site practical activities in clinics, laboratories, architecture workshops, the courtroom, television set or radio studio. First-year students will prioritised for on-site classes to ensure they settle smoothly into university life. New IT systems have been set up in the classrooms to facilitate interaction between students and specific training has been given to our teaching staff.

 

We are increasing our efforts to promote a university model which is adapted to the new social and economic context, always guaranteeing the safety of our university community and strengthening our scientific contribution to transform our ever- changing society.

 

Xavier Gil Mur, Rector.

"Today, more than ever, we know that the future is unpredictable but we can adapt and increase the flexibility of our learning model to ensure the best teaching under any circumstances, while strengthening our research potential for the benefit of society as a whole"

Xavier Gil Mur, Rector.

 

 

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2. Safety as a principle

Our priority is the health of the university community. We will ensure compliance with the safety protocols at all times in accordance with the health authority recommendations. For the new academic year a rigorous disinfection system has been established for our facilities, we have designed access routes on our campuses and in classrooms to ensure safe distancing and flexible teaching hours are also planned to help to avoid large concentrations of people as well as work shifts for our employees when required.

 

Josep M. Torné, Manager.

"Our commitment to everyone's health involves minimising any risks while we are dealing with the pandemic, but always looking ahead beyond the current circumstances."

Josep M. Torné, Manager.

 

 

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3. Permanent support

We are aware that it is a big challenge for our students to embark on university life away from home or their home country, and even more so in these uncertain times.

We ensure that students, wherever they come from, feel supported at all times by our administration and services staff as well as by the teaching staff. Every student is allocated a personal advisor who they can talk to in person or online to resolve any doubts or questions they might have throughout the year. Apart from the classes themselves, we will offer resources to welcome students and help them to settle down in the city of Barcelona, such as language courses and a multitude of extracurricular activities.

For any students who may require it, the University offers students its own psychologist and psychiatrist service at Support - University Psychology and Psychiatry Clinic. The clinic has affordable prices and the initial consultation is free of charge.

 

Bruce de Amaral, 4th-year Architecture student.

"I knew I'd come to the right place when I got here and the first person I met greeted me by my name. Studying Architecture here has exceeded my expectations, not only in terms of the organisation of the course, but also the teaching staff."

Bruce de Amaral, 4th-year Architecture student.

 

 

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4. The university leaves no one behind

onsibility defines us. We allocate 5.3 million euros from our own funds for student grants. We are strengthening our grant system and offering personalised payment terms for all students who have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

 

Edurne Malmierca, 3rd year Nursing student.

"I am the youngest child in a large family and obtaining a grant has enabled me to fulfil my dream of studying nursing and benefit from the best training for my future career. I am fascinated by all the different areas of nursing but I am sure that my future is in the area of paediatrics."

Edurne Malmierca, 3rd year Nursing student.

 

 

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5. Research to combat the pandemic

Our researchers have understood the challenge that the COVID-19 pandemic has posed to our whole society. UIC Barcelona has applied for around 20 calls for research projects directly related to COVID-19 to try to combat the pandemic and reverse the effects on people's health and on the socio-economic situation.

 

Cristina Monforte, Dean of Nursing.

"One of the toughest aspects of this pandemic has been the fact that many affected people have died alone. We want to take a scientific approach to this reality, applying qualitative methodology that will allow us to explore this experience in greater depth from perspectives which are closer to the patient"

Cristina Monforte, Dean of Nursing.

 

 

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6. Sustainable university

There is no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic is a result, to a large extent, of the economic and productive model that has pushed our environment to the limit. At UIC Barcelona, we work on a daily basis to promote and apply ethical alternatives to the sustainability challenges of today's society. Now, more than ever, we will continue to move towards a new model of complete sustainability for our campuses and strengthen our research work to address the environmental and social challenges.

 

Sílvia Albareda, Director of Cooperation and Sustainable Development.

"UIC Barcelona supports the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In this context, we have implemented the Strategic Sustainability Plan 2016-2022 in the areas of organisation, teaching, research and environmental management, in order to transform campuses towards sustainability and to make our small contribution to change."

Sílvia Albareda, Director of Cooperation and Sustainable Development.

 

 

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FAQS

Do you have any doubts about the next academic year? Read our frequently asked questions here.

When will the academic year start?

Classes will begin in September if the evolution of the pandemic follows the current pattern, and always subject to the provisions issued by the health and academic authorities.

What safety measures has the University put into place against COVID-19?

UIC Barcelona is working on a rigorous safety protocol for its two campuses to ensure the health of all members of the university community (administrative and services staff, teaching and reaching staff, and students). The physical distancing recommended by the health authorities of 1.5 meters in the classroom and in all the common areas in the university shall always be guaranteed. Similarly, a rigorous hygiene system has been established for all our facilities. There will be arrival and departure times for students in the classrooms, in order to optimise the movement of people on the university facilities.

How will safe distancing be implemented in the classroom and in practical subjects?

Where the size of the classroom does not allow the minimum compulsory distance of 1.5 meters, we plan to use a synchronous virtual teaching model, whereby some students will take the class in the classroom and others at home, always ensuring fairness so that all students can benefit from the same number of hours of on-site teaching. Priority will be given to delivering the eminently practical teaching activities on-site (architecture workshops, the courtroom, television sets), for which groups will be split to guarantee safe distancing.

If the academic year cannot be started on-site, how will it be done?

At UIC Barcelona, we have been working over the last few months on a learning model adapted to the new scenario based on blended learning. Blended learning is a learning model that combines online and on-site teaching. It is based on the use of new information technologies to add value to classroom teaching and allows us to ensure that the curricular objectives of all our academic programmes are met.

All UIC Barcelona's programmes will ensure that, if there is a second outbreak and therefore, another situation of lockdown, the continuation of study online is fully guaranteed.

If this should happen, as soon as the health authorities allowed a return to the classroom, on-site classes would be resumed, always following health authority guidelines in terms of numbers allowed, safe distancing and protective equipment.

Can I pay my tuition fees in instalments?

We are aware of the situation caused by COVID-19, and for the 2020-2021 academic year, families who have been affected by COVID-19 can apply for special payment conditions.

What if I cannot travel to Barcelona to start my studies due to the COVID-19 restrictions?

The blended learning model ensures that the curriculum objectives of all programmes are met, and therefore students who start their course online will be on an equal footing as those who are taught on-site. Students who cannot travel to Barcelona will be supported at all times in their online learning process by teachers and coordinators, in order to ensure they settle into the new academic year as smoothly as possible. When the student is able to travel to Barcelona, he or she can then join the on-site classes.

How will in-company work placements be managed?

UIC Barcelona will prioritise running practical teaching activities on-site, and, in running these, will always follow the health recommendations concerning safe distancing, hygiene measures and capacity. For the specific details of a particular programme, please contact the relevant faculty.

I belong to an at-risk group and am afraid of contagion if I come to on-site classes. Could I take my classes online?

If you belong to an at-risk group, you will be able to follow the online study programme and take the classes from home with full guarantees.

What if, while I am in a class, I start developing symptoms consistent with COVID-19?

At UIC Barcelona, we have designed a health protocol, coordinated by the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, to establish procedures for the event in which a person shows any symptoms or a positive case of COVID-19 is detected within the university.

In the event you experience symptoms consistent with COVID-19 while you are at the university, please inform your faculty and contact your doctor immediately.

Security protocols on our campuses

To ensure the health of the whole of our university community, we have implemented a rigorous health and safety protocol throughout our facilities that will govern the functioning of our day-to-day life at the university.

Safe physical distancing and use of masks

A minimum physical distancing of 1.5 metres shall be guaranteed. Masks must be worn at all times when moving between areas or in common areas.

Body temperature control gateways

Body temperature control gateways have been installed on both campuses. If the gateway gives a temperature reading of >37.2º a second check will be made with a digital hand-held thermometer. If the high temperature is confirmed, the individual will not be able to enter the campus.

Circulation within the campus

On both campuses, marked pathways have been laid out to ensure a minimum physical distancing of 1.5 metres. The stairways should be taken on the side that is signed. Using lifts should be avoided. Only one person may travel at a time in the lifts, except for those users who require assistance.

Classrooms and workspaces

Hygiene, disinfection and cleaning protocols have been stepped up in all our facilities. Each room shall be ventilated for at least 15 minutes first thing in the morning. The floor, tables and furniture, telephones, keyboards, handles, switches and other contact points shall be cleaned and disinfected at least twice a day. Regular checks shall be made to keep hand sanitiser dispensers full. All washbasins shall be disinfected twice a day and there must always be hand soap in the dispensers.