Latest News

Current Plan for Autumn 2020 Trimester - Message from Director UCD Smurfit School

  • Date: Fri, Aug 21, 2020

Share this article

Dear Students,

This document provides the current plan for the UCD Smurfit School for the Autumn 2020 Trimester.

We are very much looking forward to welcoming you to campus this September and our teams are working hard to ensure we are ready to commence teaching with all appropriate protocols in place for the health and safety of students, faculty and staff.

Please note that these plans are subject to change as national health requirements, university plans, and other factors shift. While the evolving COVID-19 situation is difficult to predict and plan for, it is our hope that, by providing as much information as we can and keeping you, our students informed, you may plan for the upcoming academic year as best you can.

The UCD Smurfit School plan is based on three key goals: safety, quality, and agility.

First and foremost, we aim to protect student and staff health as much as possible given the current situation. Secondly, we aim to provide a high-quality learning experience. Thirdly, we have designed our plan so that, if needs be, we can adapt to any changes in national health advisories. While each of these goals requires some degree of trade off, by developing a plan that includes on-campus instruction as well as high quality online delivery, we aim to provide a framework that enables students to construct an approach that works best for themselves as they aim to balance the various considerations in this unprecedented time. We are also re-opening our campus on the philosophy of co-operation and a ‘shared responsibility’ between students and staff, taking care of each other’s safety and health.  

If you have further questions, please email your Programme Manager and they will be delighted to help answer your queries.

We are looking forward to welcoming you all and if we all work together within these guidelines we can continue to keep the campus open to all. 

Yours Sincerely,

Professor Gerardine Doyle

Prof Gerardine Doyle signature

Director UCD Smurfit School, Associate Dean, UCD College of Business

Please be aware that this document only applies to the programmes delivered by the UCD Smurfit School


UCD Smurfit School – Guidelines for Joining us on Campus


Classroom policy on Face Coverings: UCD's policy on face coverings mirrors that of the Department of Higher Education which is that face coverings must be worn at all times where 2m social distancing cannot be maintained. Amongst other times, this will likely be necessary entering and leaving classrooms. It is the UCD Smurfit School policy that face coverings will be worn at all times in the classroom. There are students and staff in high risk groups and wearing your face covering in the classroom helps protect their health as well as your own. We hope that students will be considerate of this and wear face coverings in classrooms even when social distancing is possible.

If you feel unwell at all you should not come to campus. As detailed below, you can avail of any on campus teaching online, therefore you should stay at home and follow national guidelines.

While on campus: Social distancing is to be maintained whenever feasible while on campus. When this is not feasible face coverings are to be worn. In addition, many buildings and rooms will be operating one-way systems. Please keep this in mind while waiting to enter a classroom and spending time on campus between activities. In particular, certain ways in which you interact with faculty and staff will need to be formalised. For example, since it will be necessary to vacate one student class out of the room quickly so that the next class can move in, and start on time, we ask that you ask questions of your lecturer during their consultation hours rather than doing so directly after the lecture (these consultation hours will take place online).

Programme Office Meetings: Your Programme Manager is your main point of contact for all supports and services you will require during your time in the UCD Smurfit School.  Our Programme Office staff would like to continue to provide an excellent service however, we are sure you can understand that a ''drop-in '' impromptu'' service will not be possible this term in the interest of the safety and health of both students and staff. Therefore at this time, it has been decided that all meetings with Programme Office staff should be done online as office settings do not facilitate social distancing requirements. Programme Managers will share details of their online “office hours” with you during Orientation. In addition, students can schedule an appointment directly with their Programme Manager at a mutually convenient time. At any time if you have a question, please email your Programme Manager directly who will respond by email or, if you prefer, by phone/video chat. The Programme Office Team is looking forward to welcoming you during Orientation.

Teaching and Learning:

We aim to give you the best possible campus and blended learning experience, and the UCD Smurfit School considers face-to-face interaction between students, and between students and faculty, as integral elements of your learning journey. While the national response to COVID-19 presents challenges, we seek to ensure that our students can access and use our beautiful campus to the greatest extent possible.

We understand that UCD Smurfit School students value the opportunity to learn in a campus setting, and we also recognise that some forms of teaching lend themselves to distance learning more than others. Therefore, the UCD Smurfit School has decided to use a blend of face-face and online learning options to optimise your experience whilst maintaining a safe learning environment.

Our recommendation is that ideally you would be available on-campus from the start of Trimester 1 to engage with the learning environment and student experience at the UCD Smurfit School. We recognise that for students in high risk categories and for some students travelling from overseas, this will not be possible and advise that you link with the Programme Team directly on this.

Assessment: Assessments may be done online and/or in the classroom (with provision made for those who cannot be there in person). Details for individual modules will be provided at the start of term by each module co-ordinator.

Timetables: Once step 2 of the registration process is complete, your module timetables will be available in SIS Web. The registration process will commence from 28 August.  Please note that module timetables may be subject to change until the start of term.

Discover our Rankings and Accreditations