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2 Metres apart: The challenges of studying at a distance

The University of Cambridge recently announced that lectures will now be running online until 2021. At many other universities, having some lectures in person from September is very much a goal of theirs. If it does happen, it raises a number of questions, including what the capacity of lecturer halls should be.

This current semester has seen online lectures take centre stage. Whilst this has been a positive development in many cases, universities offerings are still predominately in-person. The question, however, is whether this will be feasible in September. In most cases, a part-online, part in-person form of education will be in place come September. Most certainly, courses such as Art or Drama would want to see students back in person.

Campus congestion

The 2-metre distance you keep at the supermarket could very well be a solution for universities looking to welcome students back in September. A congested campus and in particularly congested lecturer halls pose a major challenge.

One measure that has been talked about that helps ease congestion is bringing in specific walking routes. Another is to limit the number of students as a whole on campus and also in communal areas such as the library and canteen. These two measures combined with a hybrid education should ensure that universities are safe places for students to study come September.

Enforcement on campus

At many universities, another major challenge is to what extent students will adhere to the rules and how could they be enforced.

In order to avoid crowds, it is important to set a limit of how many students can be in a certain area and to keep track of how full that area has become. With this information, you can refuse students or have them wait when the maximum number of students is reached. 

With the Campus Sign-In feature of the StuCommApp, students can register anonymously and the university has real-time insight into the number of students present at any one time. It is also a means of verification: if it is suspected that too many students are present, students present can use the app to demonstrate whether they have registered. If this is not the case, they can be asked to leave the campus.

Do you want to know more about managing the crowds on the campus with the Campus Sign-In feature? Then contact us!

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