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Wed, 18 Mar 2020

JCU COVID-19 response

Artistic photo of the large sign at the campus entrance

James Cook University will pause all on-campus teaching for a week to help lecturers fast-track the development of online course materials and for the University to be made ready to implement additional social distancing measures, as part of JCU’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • From Monday 23rd March until Friday 27th March all face-to-face teaching scheduled to be delivered on JCU’s Townsville and Cairns campuses will be paused.
  • The University will remain open during the teaching pause week and thereafter, subject to any direction by government.
  • In particular, on-campus students in Townsville and Cairns, including students living in on-campus accommodation, should continue to attend to their study during the pause week. The Library, study areas, student enquiry and support services and campus facilities will be available during this time.
  • Classes will resume in Townsville and Cairns on 30th March for those programs yet to commence online delivery. During that week, academic staff will be able to advise their students in person on the changed arrangements for their course.
  • Those courses able to convert to online delivery will do so from 30th March, with all others to follow from 6th April. The Nursing program is expected to be fully online as of 23rd March.

JCU Vice Chancellor Professor Sandra Harding said the approach is in line with Federal Government measures that are intended to slow the speed of community transmission of COVID-19 and, most importantly, protect those most vulnerable in our community.

“The one-week pause in teaching will give lecturers crucial breathing space to continue developing online course materials for students. It also allows us to implement new social distancing measures so students and staff can safely undertake their work and study on campus as required.

“We want to ensure students can complete their studies in this academic year, and we are determined to ensure our students continue to have access to a world-class education.

“Online teaching, coupled with access to the University’s facilities and resources, will maximise students’ study experience and ability to stay on track with their studies in extraordinary times, while keeping them, and our community, safe and well,” Professor Harding said.

JCU is continuing to follow the advice of Queensland Health and the Australian Government in determining its response to COVID-19.

“JCU is closely monitoring events as the situation continues to evolve. Our top priority is the health and wellbeing of our students and staff and the broader community, while limiting disruption as much as possible in these times of uncertainty,” Professor Harding said.