Online instead of presence: start of the third Corona semester

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Lecture time begins on Monday at Bavaria’s universities, but the Hrsle will remain empty due to the corona pandemic. It is already the third semester in which the students listen to the teacher’s words on their home computers and know many of their fellow students only from chat groups. Even if a lot has become established in the meantime, most face-to-face events are longing for. As a possibility – analogous to the schools – consistent corona tests are in the room. But corresponding concepts are not in sight – and are fraught with uncertainties.

If you look at the concept of self-tests, several questions arise, says Oliver Jahraus, Vice President of Munich’s Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU), who is responsible for teaching. “Where do these tests come from and who pays for them? How is it all organized? Is this the responsibility of the students, for example, or should the universities do it themselves? And: What would then have been achieved for the summer semester? “

According to Jahraus, even a self-test strategy could not override the hygiene rules due to the error rate. It is these that are decisive for the switch to online teaching. An example: In the LMU Audimax, which normally has 900 seats, a minimum of 77 people can be accommodated.

The Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg also currently sees no added value in quick and self-tests for the existing hygiene concept for attendance events and exams. The President of the Technical University of Munich, Thomas Hofmann, had suggested in the “Sddeutsche Zeitung” that students should be able to “tangibly integrate into an academic environment” with the help of comprehensive self-tests.

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“For such a test concept, however, there would still have to be nationwide coordination and framework conditions created (including legal conditions, test availability, financing),” said the University of Augsburg. Since the lecture period will be over in 14 weeks and the current infection protection ordinance even explicitly forbids the universities to attend events with a few exceptions, a change during the summer semester is therefore unlikely.

At the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Mnchen, on the other hand, the tests will play a decisive role from Monday: They should also enable ensemble, orchestra and choir work to be performed in the presence of people again. Musical and artistic training is particularly difficult to organize at a distance. Nursing or physiotherapy are also difficult to learn at home, as the Rosenheim Technical University reports. Some teaching formats such as laboratory work or sports practice are therefore allowed to take place with strict hygiene rules.

But some of the exceptions are not enough, as the example of the Academy of Fine Arts in Nuremberg shows. “Class meetings and work in the artistic workshops are not possible online or only with a major impact on the quality of the teaching,” says press spokeswoman Petra Meyer. “If you consider that this applies to around 80 percent of the teaching, the dimension of loss becomes clear.”

dpa-infocom, dpa: 210411-99-158296 / 2


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