FAQs & Info
OUTLOOK FOR FALL 2020
What can I expect for the fall semester at the Faculty of Science?
We recognize that students and their supporters are navigating uncertain times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Faculty of Science remains committed to supporting you.The fall term will be predominantly online. Courses offered by the Faculty of Science will be mainly delivered through Brightspace. Through this platform students can find their assignments, upload homework, participate in class discussions and contact their instructors. Students can expect to communicate through discussion forums; particularly for group work, videoconferencing, as well as phone and email. There will also be an expectation for some hands on labs to be done independently. Our student experience team in the Faculty of Science is undertaking considerable work to ensure our fall student experience is robust and comprehensive. Questions regarding individual courses can be directed to the the course instructor.
Should I come to Halifax in the fall?
Offering academic content online is different than offering an online-only program. The other elements of the student experience, whatever that means for you, will be intact to the extent permitted by public health. You are welcome to come to Halifax if it is safe, practical, and permitted for you to do so - but you are not required to be here in order to make progress in your degree. If you are in Halifax once we can do so safely, we are designing some in-person, extra-curricular activities that will introduce you to each other, members of the faculty, employers and alumni. You will most likely also be able to take advantage of some of the common spaces such as libraries and learning commons. If you aren’t in Halifax, we’ll be working with faculty, students, and the student societies to help you connect virtually.
I am in a different time zone and have some concerns about being able to attend classes – what should I do?
The Faculty of Science is committed to ensuring all students are able to pursue their studies and progress towards their goals wherever they may be. All classes in the fall will be designed to allow students in all time zones to access course material when it suits them best. Some classes may have components held at regularly scheduled times to enable some interactivity but not for the delivery of core content.
I have an offer of admission for Fall 2020, should I delay it until January or September 2021?
Because classes are proceeding in September, we are not adjusting our deferral policy. To learn more about programs that are eligible to defer admission, or to apply for a deferral, please visit dal.ca/defer.
Please note: Students who defer may not undertake post-secondary studies at another institution before starting at Dalhousie. Should you choose to do so, you will need to reapply to Dalhousie.
Will first year students still have an orientation?
Dalhousie will be holding a number of orientation events online. The Faculty of Science will also be developing some Science orientation events for new students in September.
Will I still be able to graduate on time?
Our goal is to ensure that all students will be able to progress through their programs and graduate on time, whether by taking online classes or in person classes when these resume. If you feel that you will be prevented from graduation because of the conditions caused by the pandemic, please contact us directly at email@example.com.
I have a question about completing my course in online format, who should I contact?
Questions regarding individual assignments, workload, and existing projects should be directed to your instructor. Please allow instructors time to respond as they review individual requests during this time. If you have questions about technology or how to work remotely in Bright space, visit dal.ca/remoteteaching.
When will I be able to register for my first-year courses?
First-year course registration will open on June 15, 2020 at 8 a.m. ADT (Halifax time). Before you can register, you must accept your offer of admission by paying your $200 CAD admission deposit at least 24 hours before registering and activate your Net ID. Learn more about how to register for courses.
How will I be evaluated and graded in online courses in the Faculty of Science?
All evaluation and assessment for Fall 2020 term courses that are offered online will also take place online. Evaluation and assessment will include assignments, tests, presentations, and final assessments. No in-person evaluation or assessment will take place for online courses.
Will certain classes be accelerated due to no in class labs?
At this time, we are anticipating that all classes will proceed according the set timetable.
How will I write exams?
Questions regarding tests, midterms, and final exam formats should be directed to your instructor. Please allow instructors time to respond as they review individual requests during this time. For general information, visit dal.ca/remoteteaching.
How will I do the lab component of my course online?
Our lab instructors and coordinators for labs are working hard over the summer to develop online programming for both the lab and lecture components of their courses. They are meeting regularly to discuss strategies while also modifying the learning objectives to fit online learning and finding the appropriate resources to help you during this time. We are extremely confident that labs will comprehensive and great learning experiences. Where we believe that certain lab components cannot be feasibly offered online, we will be adjusting the schedule to move these components to winter 2021.
I work in a lab / on campus a few hours a week. What should I do? Who should I talk to?
Attendance on campus is strongly discouraged unless directed to or permitted to attend work by an administrative head. Employees are expected to stay and work from home. If you have questions about your specific work or living situation, please discuss with your supervisor, unit head, or residence contact (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Can I come to the Learning Commons to do some work?
All Dalhousie library locations (and common study spaces like the Wallace McCain Learning Commons) are closed. Libraries have increased their capacity to engage students and faculty members virtually and will continue to offer the full array of online services during the closure, including research and reference assistance through LiveHelp, and extensive support for Temporary Remote Teaching through Brightspace (see dal.ca/remoteteaching). Please see the Dal Libraries website at libraries.dal.ca for more details.
I have an academic accommodation. Who should I see about changes based on remote temporary teaching?
I don’t have an accommodation, but I think I need one based on the change to remote temporary teaching. Who should I contact?
Can I ask for an extension?
Yes. Please contact your instructor or supervisor to discuss options.
I have a question about my program. Can I still get in touch with an advisor even though we are online?
Yes. Advising support will still be available online. If you need help picking your courses, finding a major or have any other advising questions, please visit https://www.dal.ca/campus_life/academic-support/student-success-centre.html.
I do not have a computer or reliable internet at home. Am I still able to do online classes?
If you are able to travel to campus, there will be opportunities to access campus internet and computers. If travel to campus is not possible, but you feel that you have technological barriers to successful participation in online learning, please let us know so we can understand the scope of the problem and try to work towards the solution.
Students who require access to a computer can contact email@example.com to make a request to support their needs.
Do I need a study permit if I am an international student studying from my home country?
You do not need a study permit to take an online class. However, if you intend to apply for a postgraduate work permit after graduation, then you do need to have a study permit.
I am a graduate student in the Faculty of Science. Where can I find more information about research, thesis defences, scholarships and other topics?
If you are a graduate student at Dalhousie looking for more specific information about topics relevant to you, please visit the following FAQ website for further information.
I am a graduate student and some of my research requires being in the lab – will I be able to do that?
Some laboratories and other research facilities will be open in the fall. More detail will be available throughout the summer. Graduate students should communicate directly with their supervisors about expectations for their research work.