UoL students react to remaining in Lincoln over lockdown

The Minister of State for Universities has told students not to go home for the national lockdown

As of November 5, 00:01, England was put on a month-long national lockdown, however, all educational establishments were told to remain open. In a Facebook post, the University of Lincoln re-established the rules set out by the Government that students should remain at their term-time address and not move around the country.

In an email to all students, the University forwarded a letter from the Minister of State for Universities, Michelle Donelan, who emphasised that students should stay at their term-time residence. “The letter makes clear that the Government expects universities to continue to provide blended learning, online and face-to-face teaching wherever possible. Libraries and study spaces are to remain open and we are looking to do more with the spaces we have around the campus to create safe social and study areas, which are Covid secure.”

Students at the University of Lincoln have taken to social media to express their opinions on having to stay in Lincoln over the national lockdown period and the university not moving all studies online.

‘I want to receive the quality of education I’m paying for’

Emma, a third-year media student said: “I understand that while degrees such as nursing and more hands-on degrees require in-person learning, I believe that it should be on a course-by-course basis at this point. We don’t need to be in person. Requiring only those who need to be on campus have in-person sessions would not only reduce the number of potential cases, but would make students feel a lot safer.

“I want to receive the quality of education I’m paying for, and not have to be faced with the choice of choosing between my safety and my degree.”

‘We would engage more if it was in person’

However, some students prefer the mix of online and face-to-face learning that is being offered by the University. “I like the blended learning approach and keeping the uni open and if anything I find the lectures better online than they would be in person.

“I just think that seminars would be better in person as there’s only a small amount of us and we would engage more if it was in person, but I do like the workshops in person like they are for Drama now as if it was online it wouldn’t be the same, none of us have enough room in our rooms to do physical activities over zoom.”

‘Lockdown will last so much longer’

“I’m glad we don’t have to go home but I don’t think universities and schools should be open! It’s going to make lockdown last so much longer.”

‘I have all I need here’

Callum, a business student said: “I’ve got everything I need here, all the resources and the student atmosphere so overall I am quite happy to stay. If I went back home, it wouldn’t be the same environment and I wouldn’t have the same work ethic that I do at uni.”

‘I wonder if it’s worth it’

Another student said: “I understand why they want to stay open but at the same time, I just wonder if it’s worth it – considering the number of cases we’ve had at the uni.”

A University of Lincoln spokesperson said: “We have written to all students to give them information ahead of the national lockdown. We are lucky at the University of Lincoln to have such amazing students who are incredibly positive, resilient, and supportive of each other in our community.

“There may be some changes to some courses during this lockdown period and Head of Schools are writing to students this week to let them know what this means for them and if there are any changes to their learning or timetable. We are responding to changing circumstances and adapting our teaching according to the best way forward for individual programmes, keeping some face-to-face provision as Government has asked us to do.

“Our students’ needs are as always, our number one priority and if students need further help or advice, they should contact their personal tutor or our Student Support or Wellbeing Centre who are on hand if they need them.”

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