As school reopens this week, local universities adopt three different methods for teaching and pandemic prevention

13 Aug 2020

Lianhe Zaobao, 13 Aug 2020, 本周起陆续开学 本地大学采三模式兼顾教学与防疫 (summarised translation)

Local public universities will begin their academic year starting this week. To ensure good quality teaching and the safety of teachers and students amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, each university has adopted three different teaching methods. These range from a mixed mode of online and offline teaching or even moving all courses online. Some courses however, due to its teaching needs, require students to return to school.

In general, large classes with more than 50 students will be conducted online while smaller tutorial classes with less than 50 have the flexibility of choice.

Nanyang Technological University and National University of Singapore will adopt similar teaching methods where large-scale lectures will shift online and most tutorials can continue to be conducted face-to-face with classes within 50 and safe distancing measures in place between teachers and students.

The Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), which will open in September for the first time this year, will take a slightly different approach. Professor Lim Seh Chun, Interim Provost of SUTD, said that the current approach was to arrange for freshmen students to attend classes on campus in the first semester as "this will allow them to better experience SUTD's unique pedagogy and culture”, which includes peer-to-peer learning. But the university will control the number of students in each class.

Although the Singapore Management University has always adopted a small-class seminar model with class sizes not exceeding 50 students, it has still decided to move most of its courses online, leaving only a small part of the courses to adopt a hybrid mode of online and offline teaching, i.e. the same class will have half its students attending in school while the other half attends from home, and they alternate thereafter.