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COVID-19 Information for the CUE Community

Re-opening CUE – Detailed Information

May 25, 2020

Concordia University of Edmonton (CUE) will reopen in September 2020 for the fall semester. Our top priorities are the health and safety of our community, and being able to provide our students with an exceptional learning experience. 

The semester will be predominately virtual, with limited exceptions for classes and programs that require in-person interaction and extensive experiential learning. This will allow all students to continue with their education regardless of where they may be in Canada or the world, while limiting the further spread of COVID-19. 

Those interested in understanding the background context that informed our decisions for fall 2020 may access that information here

The following will guide our reopening:

  • We are committed to the health, safety, and success of our community. We put people first, understanding the challenges that have been created by COVID-19. From the delivery of classes to the maintenance of facilities and delivery of research programs, we take our role in minimizing the further spread of COVID-19 seriously and will do what we can to put the right measures in place for our community. 
  • We will continue to be sensitive, flexible, and responsive to individual circumstances, adopting a generous solutions-focused approach to solving problems should they arise.
  • We will keep restrictions in place as per Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy along with the ongoing advice and recommendations of Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health. These restrictions and recommendations will be respected at all times. 
  • We have developed a set of protocols, which may change as circumstances dictate, that will act as a condition for on-campus attendance (see Appendix A). 
  • We will limit on-campus attendance to employees, current students, and long-term tenants. Guests are not permitted (rare exceptions may be granted by administration if a need can be demonstrated). 
  • We will limit indoor gatherings to less than 15 people until health regulations advise otherwise. 
  • We will enforce physical distancing, requiring all students, faculty, and staff to maintain two meters of physical distance from others at all times until health regulations advise otherwise. 
  • We will not tolerate instances of discrimination or harassment of students and employees who may become infected with COVID-19, or for any other reason. 

Online courses:

  • Most courses will be delivered online.
  • Courses that begin the semester online will remain that way for the entire Fall semester.
  • Courses required to complete a degree program will be available online.
  • CUE is providing additional forms of support to all instructors teaching online courses in order to enable high-quality online learning experiences.
  • Students enrolled in online classes who do not have adequate technology at home should contact IT Services to discuss solutions.
  • Assistance for students facing challenges with online learning is available through Student Life and Learning.

In-person courses:

  • A limited selection of in-person courses will be available. Registration numbers for in-person courses will be limited by health regulations and classroom capacity.
  • Courses that begin the semester in-person will remain that way for the entire Fall semester, unless changing health regulations or other related concerns dictate otherwise.
  • Any course taught in-person will take place in a room large enough to allow for two metres of physical distancing.
  • No faculty member, sessional instructor, or lab instructor will be required to teach in-person if they are not comfortable in doing so.
  • Outside of class, students are encouraged to study at home as much as possible.
  • Practicum and internship opportunities will run depending on availability, appropriateness, and workplace safety measures enacted at the placement site.
  • Assistance for students facing challenges is available through Student Life and Learning.

Information for students:

  • A designated, monitored study area that allows for two metres of physical distancing will be available for students who do not have adequate facilities to study at home. Students will be asked to register to use this area, which will be monitored.
  • Our Library will be open and available both online and in-person, operating with restricted on-campus hours.
  • Our Bookstore will be open and available both online and in-person, operating with restricted on-campus hours.
  • Most student services, including counselling and learning accommodations, will be available both online and in-person but may operate with restricted on-campus hours.
  • Career Services will be available both online and in-person but may operate with restricted on-campus hours.
  • Student Residences are closed for the Fall semester. Students requiring accommodation will be assisted in finding an appropriate place to live by our Residence Life team.
  • Our Fitness Centre is closed for the Fall semester. A 20% reduction in student athletics fees will be implemented to compensate for this.
  • Our International Office will be open and available both online and in-person.
  • All outbound study abroad exchange opportunities are suspended for the Fall semester, with the exception of the Dual Degrees program. Exceptions will only be granted if the destination country is safe for travel, and travel restrictions have been lifted.
  • Incoming mobility is also cancelled, and we are unable to host exchange students or ELAP students on campus.
  • Concerts, drama productions, and conferences are cancelled for Fall semester unless they are performed remotely. Rehearsals are permitted on-campus providing that two meters of physical distancing (until health regulations advise otherwise) and the other protocols in place for people coming on to campus are respected.
  • Indigenous Student Services will be available both online and in-person but may operate with restricted on-campus hours.
  • Our Thunder Athletics programs will continue to run with remote and in-person training opportunities that adhere to public health guidelines. Given physical distancing requirements, there remains some uncertainty about when the Alberta Colleges Athletics Conference (ACAC) season will resume; however, our Athletics Department is working closely with ACAC to ensure an eventual return to play when it is safe to do so. 
  • Statements have been issued previously on tuition and fees as well as grading for the period during which we are modifying our operations due to COVID-19.

Administration and facilities:

  • Our facilities will be managed differently. Some buildings and areas will remain closed, some may be closed temporarily from time to time, and entry and exit points from buildings will be restricted. The Hole Academic Centre main northwest entrance will be unlocked for access. When in use the Ralph King Athletic Centre main south entrance will be unlocked. Some hallways and common areas will be designated as one-way for traffic flow. 
  • Enhanced cleaning techniques will be employed for on-campus areas used by our community (see Appendix B). 
  • Offices and workspaces will be arranged in such a way as to respect physical distancing and COVID-19 sanitation requirements. 
  • Many employees will continue to be encouraged to work from home. Staff work locations will be determined by supervisors based on institutional need. Staff members who for safety reasons are uncomfortable attending campus in-person should notify their supervisor or HR.
  • All business and administrative offices will be open and available both online and in-person, operating with restricted on-campus hours as required. 
  • Our Cafeteria will provide limited service. 
  • Student and employee travel connected to CUE business or study remains suspended until further notice, with some exceptions as required for essential services.
  • Research Services will be open and available both online and in-person but may operate with restricted on-campus hours.
  • Our Centres and Institutes will continue to operate both online and in-person as appropriate.
  • Alumni Relations will be open and available both online and in-person.
  • Our Office of Extension and Culture will continue to operate both online and in-person.
  • Our campus is not available for short-term facilities rentals in the Fall semester. However, long-term tenants will be permitted and asked to follow CUE COVID-19 guidelines.
  • There will be no changes to campus parking arrangements.
  • Meetings and limited events may occur on-campus but must respect two meters of physical distancing until health regulations advise otherwise, along with the other protocols in place for people coming on to campus. Even where all attendees are on-campus, it may be appropriate to meet electronically wherever possible.

Appendix A: Protocols for on-campus attendance

We are committed to taking the actions necessary to protect the health of our community. Recognizing that keeping our campus safe is a community responsibility, your presence on-campus at Concordia University of Edmonton implies acceptance of the following conditions. 

You must:

  • Screen for symptoms every day that you enter CUE using the AHS COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool.
  • Leave campus immediately if you show any symptoms of COVID-19 infection, phoning 811 and alerting vpsll@concordia.ab.ca.
  • Maintain two meters of physical distance from other people.
  • Carry a face mask at all times, using it if you come within two metres of another person without a physical barrier in place. You may choose to wear a mask at any time. Any mask may be worn that is suitable for preventing the spread of droplets. 
  • Sanitize your hands upon arrival and departure
  • Wipe down areas you have used if disinfecting materials have been provided by CUE for that purpose.
  • Only visit those areas necessary for you to complete your business on campus.
  • Carry CUE identification at all times, producing it for Security staff if requested.
  • Not bring any guests to campus.
  • Encourage fellow students and/or colleagues to engage in safe forms of social interaction, and to respect the COVID-19 rules in place at CUE.

Failure to respect these protocols may result in you being asked to leave campus immediately, in addition to potential further disciplinary action.

Please alert CUE Security staff to any instances of unsafe behaviour or circumstances by phoning +1 780.479.8761, or 5555 from any campus office or classroom.

Appendix B: General enhanced campus cleaning techniques

General cleaning of the majority of the university facilities is the responsibility of Custodial Services. Consideration will be given to the amount of time the virus can live outside the body on hard or soft surfaces as this will impact the cleaning needs. (Note: Cleaning departments are to follow the protocol outlined below as well as the Infection/Prevention and Control Guidance provided by Health Canada.) 

Custodial Services are responsible for the following cleaning strategies: 

  • Maintaining availability of infection control supplies (i.e. hand-hygiene products, hand sanitizer and soaps, cleaning supplies, and masks).
  • Posting of signage related to hand hygiene. 
  • Filling soap dispensers in all bathrooms on a daily basis. 
  • Installing and refilling hand sanitizer stations. 
  • Increased frequency of cleaning high-touch surfaces and areas in use around campus. 
  • Understanding environmental cleaning products registered in Canada with a Drug Identification Number (DIN) need to be aligned with Health Canada Infection prevention and control recommendation for the virus.
  • Ensuring correct concentration of cleaning chemicals dilution rate to kill flu virus i.e., “1492” or “Saber” which is effective against viruses, bacteria, mould and fungus. 
  • Providing the appropriate supplies to disinfect areas before and after use where individuals share work or study stations.