Frequently asked questions

Last updated: May 28, 2020 at 11:54 a.m. ADT


Spring/Summer and Fall 2020 Semesters

How are spring/summer classes being conducted?

Spring/summer courses are being conducted via remote (distance) teaching. Visit dal.ca/remoteteaching for general information.

What is the status of the fall semester?

The fall term will be predominantly online, with limited exceptions based on those programs where extensive experiential learning forms part of the curriculum (i.e. medicine, dentistry, select health professions, agriculture) and these can be provided safely in adherence to health protocols. Full in-person, on-campus courses will not resume before January 2021.

These decisions have been made in line with prevailing public health advice and restrictions, and the leadership of our academic and operational teams. We are building a robust campus safety plan for those who attend in person based on the limited exceptions described above.

Our academic team is working on detailed plans on a course-by-course basis. We expect to have more detail to share with you in June, when we will also share additional information on residences, food services, libraries, athletics and ancillary programs.

How is Dalhousie improving the online learning experience for the fall semester?

Dalhousie is investing in over $1 million in technology development, additional online instruction training and increased online supports for students. Our student experience team is undertaking considerable work to ensure our fall student experience is robust and comprehensive. We’re also planning more bursaries and financial aid support than ever before, recognizing the unique financial challenges many are facing in this pandemic.

Our academic team is working on detailed plans on a course-by-course basis. We expect to have more detail to share with you in June.

Who do I contact about academic accommodations?

If there are aspects of the remote temporary teaching design, and/or remote temporary teaching environment, that result in barriers to your inclusion, please contact the Student Accessibility Centre to explore possible accommodations.  

Halifax: access@dal.ca  
Truro: ssdalac@dal.ca

My international field course has been cancelled. What will happen with the credits that were to be obtained?

The university will work with individuals to minimize the impact on students’ academic careers. Please coordinate with your instructor/advisor. 

 

Final Grades (Winter 2020)

What are my different grading options for winter 2020 courses? What if I am not satisfied with my marks?

The university has developed a process to ensure the protection of your academic record, given the unusual and extreme circumstances of the 2020 winter term. We have come up with several academic options for you to consider. Once ALL your grades have been posted to Dal Online, you will be able to choose one of the following options for each of your courses.

If you receive a passing grade, you may:

  •     keep final letter grade and earn the credit (if you choose this option, you don't need to do anything) OR  

  •     request to have your grade changed to "PASS". PASS will not be included in GPA calculations (“GPA neutral”), but credit will still be earned for the course. This is a good option if you feel you were prevented from performing to the best of your ability by circumstances resulting from the suspension of an in-person class or other changes in the class or in your personal situation resulting from COVID-19. See the following question “What is the process for changing my grade to PASS or ILL?” for details on how to request this change.  

If you do not receive a passing grade, you may:  

  •       request to have the F grade switched to an “ILL”, which is defined on your transcript as “compassionate reasons, or illness”. ILL will not be included in GPA calculations (GPA neutral) and does NOT give you credit for the course. See the following question “What is the process for changing my grade to PASS or ILL?” for details on how to request this change.

Please note that a PASS grade may not automatically fulfil pre-requisite requirements and that a minimum grade required for a PASS is dependent upon your program (See “How does changing my grade to PASS or ILL impact pre-requisites?” below for more information). If you are unsure what minimum grade is required, please contact your program directly.

How do I request a change to my grade/s?


•    Submit a waiver form to change your grade(s) to PASS/ILL after ALL your final grades have been posted. Requests will not be considered until all your grades have been posted in Dal Online.  

•    The process to do this will be available in Dal Online starting April 15, 2020.

•    To access the waiver form, log in to your Dal Online account and choose Student Records>Academic Record. Click on the link at the top of the page and complete the required information in the waiver application.

•    Once you submit your waiver, an academic advisor will reach out to you via your dal.ca email to discuss your options.  

•    For potential graduates, waivers should be submitted by May 8, 2020.  

•    For all other students, waivers should be submitted by June 1, 2020.

I am struggling to make a decision about my options for final grades. Where can I get advice?

The university is now offering different grading options to students (see above: Is the university offering students different grading options for winter 2020 courses?). You don't have to make this decision alone. Dalhousie encourages you to meet with an advisor, which can be done through email, a phone conversation or an online meeting.

An advisor will help you consider what impact, if any, the different grading options might have on your GPA, your program/degree requirements, awards/dean's list/academic standing or future academic goals and decisions. 

Visit our academic support page for a list of advisors and contact information. 

How does changing my grade to PASS or ILL impact pre-requisites?

PASS will count as having achieved basic pre-requisite requirements at Dal. However, a PASS will not automatically be accepted as a pre-requisite for courses where a minimum grade is required (e.g. a C or above in the pre-requisite course).   

Pre-requisites with minimum grade requirements will be assessed using the final grade you received in your course. Your advisor can inform you about the process for requesting instructor permission if your final grade is below the minimum requirement for a course.  

ILL will not count as having achieved any pre-requisite requirements as the credit was not successfully earned.

 

Graduation and Convocation

What is the status of Spring Convocation?

All non-essential university events are cancelled or postponed until July 2 at a minimum. Regrettably, this includes Dalhousie Convocation ceremonies scheduled for May 2020.  

Even though we are unable to celebrate together in person, we’ve been working hard to ensure you have an opportunity to mark this important milestone and take pride in all you’ve achieved. We have set up a special space online for grads and their supporters to share photos, videos and Dal memories, along with well-wishes from the broader Dal community. Look for a link in your email on Wednesday, May 20.

In addition, many Faculties and programs will be hosting their own celebration events virtually in May and June. Details will be emailed to you.

When will degrees officially be conferred?

Dalhousie Senate began conferring degrees on Wednesday, May 13. The list of Spring 2020 graduates awarded degrees at that session of Senate can be found now on the convocation website. The list will be updated again on Wednesday, May 20 and Wednesday, June 3 in the afternoon once Senate has met to confer additional degrees. Please look for email confirmation as well.

When will I receive my parchment?

This spring, parchments will be sent to students as part of a celebratory convocation package. Expect a special delivery later this spring with your parchment, a convocation keepsake booklet and a few other surprises. A signature will be required when the package arrives.

Can I take part in a future convocation ceremony in person?

We know many graduates will still want their chance to walk across the convocation stage. We will be in touch at a later date with details of future ceremonies that you can choose to take part in.


Incoming and Future Students

I am an incoming student and have questions about admissions and the fall term. Where do I go?

We know you might have questions about the fall term and what your next steps should be. We understand the situation is stressful, and potentially causing a lot of uncertainty. Please know we are here to support you.

The fall term will be predominantly online, with limited exceptions based on those programs where extensive experiential learning forms part of the curriculum (i.e. medicine, dentistry, select health professions, agriculture) and these can be provided safely in adherence to health protocols. Full in-person, on-campus courses will not resume before January 2021. Our Undergraduate Admission COVID-19 FAQs has the most up-to-date information on applying to Dalhousie, submitting transcripts, English language testing, and more.

If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us by connecting with an advisor supporting students from your area.

Are you a prospective graduate student? Please visit the Graduate Student COVID-19 FAQs for more information, or email grad.studies@dal.ca.

I am a prospective or incoming graduate student. How is Dalhousie supporting applicants experiencing disruptions caused by COVID-19?

The Faculty of Graduate Studies is supporting prospective and incoming students by providing accommodations in the application process to those experiencing school, test centre and/or postal service closures. For more information, visit the Graduate Studies FAQ related to COVID-19 or contact graduate.studies@dal.ca.

I have applied or am thinking of applying to live in residence. Where can I find more information about the status of residence and my application for the fall?

Due to the unprecedented times in which we’re operating, the distribution of room offers has been delayed. Dalhousie is continuing to work diligently through this period of uncertainty. In the meantime, we appreciate your patience. It is our hope that we will have more information to share in June regarding room assignments.

Thank you to those who applied to stay with us. If your plans have changed and you are looking to withdraw your application for residence, please let us know as soon as possible.

Please contact us by email if you have any questions:

    Halifax: residence@dal.ca
    Truro: resac@dal.ca

Visit the residence COVID-19 page for the latest informaiton.

 

Current Students

How will classes be conducted in the fall?

The fall term will be predominantly online, with limited exceptions based on those programs where extensive experiential learning forms part of the curriculum (i.e. medicine, dentistry, select health professions, agriculture) and these can be provided safely in adherence to health protocols. Full in-person, on-campus courses will not resume before January 2021.

These decisions come after much analysis and deliberation. They are made in line with prevailing public health advice and restrictions, and the leadership of our academic and operational teams. We are building a robust campus safety plan for those who attend in person based on the limited exceptions described above.

Our academic team is working on detailed plans on a course-by-course basis. We expect to have more detail to share with you in June, when we will also share additional information on residences, food services, libraries, athletics and ancillary programs.

Should I still register for classes?

Registration for returning Dalhousie students opened online March 18. All important dates and information about registration can be found online here.

I cannot pay all of my winter fees. Will I be able to register for summer or fall/winter 2020 classes?

Yes. Registration holds on outstanding accounts related to winter term fees will be temporarily lifted to allow for registration. Outstanding fees must be paid by May 15, 2020. If outstanding fees are not paid, holds will be reinstated and registration for the summer and fall/winter terms may be removed. Please contact student.accounts@dal.ca if you have overdue feels that you are not able to pay by May 15, 2020. 

I am a student in the Faculty of Health or the Faculty of Medicine. Where can I find more information about whether my placement or residency is impacted?

If you are a student in the Faculty of Medicine, please visit this web page for detailed information.

If you are a student in the Faculty of Health, please read the following memo sent about student placements.

I am a graduate student at Dalhousie. 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.


Student Finances

What is the status of tuition and student fees for spring/summer and fall 2020?

For spring/summer 2020 courses, no changes will be made to tuition fees from last year other than what has been previously approved by the Board of Governors (namely, the ongoing multi-year adjustment to international fees). 

For fall 2020, tuition is increasing by 3%. Annual tuition increases are necessary to maintain the high quality of our academic programming — this was true before the COVID-19 pandemic and is even more apparent today as we work to ensure your academic experience this fall is delivered to the highest standards. International tuition will increase (as previously approved) by an additional $1,473 for full-time students who began their studies in September 2019 or later — an adjustment to bring our fees more in line our Canadian comparators.

We’re waiving or modifying many student fees. For many students, these savings will offset the tuition increase for the fall.

  • Athletics and recreation fees for all students will be waived for the fall term, as will fees related to the Dalplex Fitness Centre ($90).

  • Student Services and Facilites Renewal Fees will be frozen at 2019-20 rates for the upcoming year.

  • Faculty-based fees are being reviewed and will be adjusted where possible.

  • A decision regarding UPass fees will be made at a later date once more details are available.


For full details and other information about Dalhousie's budget, visit dal.ca/budget.

I am a student in need of financial support. How can Dalhousie help me?

We’re providing more financial aid than ever before, recognizing the impact of the current pandemic on the financial means of many of our students. We’re doubling financial aid bursary funding, adding an additional $3 million for domestic and international undergraduate students who need financial support. This financial assistance is above and beyond the scholarships, bursaries and other student assistance Dalhousie offers from the operating budget totalling more than $36 million per year.

For students in need of emergency financial assistance, please contact financialemergency@dal.ca (for domestic students) or international.centre@dal.ca (for international students) for more information on how we may assist you. Or, please visit our COVID-19 Financial Resources page for links to other Dalhousie, government and community supports.

Will the change to remote teaching affect my student loan?

If you are receiving Canadian/Provincial Student Loans, the changes in class delivery at Dalhousie will not affect your student loan eligibility. For information on Nova Scotia Student Assistance, visit novascotia.ca/studentassistance

Will Dalhousie be compounding interest on late tuition fees?

At this time, we have stopped accruing interest on late tuition fees until June 1, 2020.

I have lost my job because of COVID-19 — is there any help for me?

We encourage you to explore options in the The Government of Canada’s Covid-19 Economic Response Plan.


General Operations, Services & Campus Facilities

Is Dalhousie closed due to COVID-19?

While Dalhousie remains operational, we have moved to a virtual operational environment. Consequently, campus buildings, offices and services have suspended in-person operations, and are restricting access except for faculty/staff with electronic access control cards. Designated residence buildings will have access controlled by an on-site commissionaire. 

When does the university expect to reopen?

In alignment with broader public health protocols in our province, some university operations continue to be restricted until at least July 2, 2020. These include on-campus facilities and services that are currently closed or operating remotely and in-person university events. 

Return to campus planning is well underway. All major decision points are being jointly evaluated by a cross-functional steering group that is developing the overall “Return to Campus” plan across academics, research and operations. This group is collecting information from the broadest areas of the university so that critical areas of importance can be considered into a phased approach that will be further detailed in June.

The fall term for students will be predominantly online, with limited exceptions based on those programs where extensive experiential learning forms part of the curriculum and these can be provided safely in adherence to health protocols. Full in-person, on-campus courses will not resume before January 2021.

Are residences and dining halls at the university closed?

Dalhousie has made special arrangements for those students who are unable to return home due to travel restrictions or significant personal reasons to stay in residence at this time. 

For those students who remain in residence, the dining halls are open, but are adhering to public health policies around cleanliness and social distancing to ensure the safety of our residents. 

Food stations in the Howe and O’Brien dining halls have to-go meal services based on preferences and needs.

Hours of operation:
Breakfast: 8 - 10 a.m.
Lunch: 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Dinner: 5-7 p.m.

Are student services still open?

Many student services are still accessible but have moved to virtual operations. The examples below may not cover all services, so please visit services’ websites for specific details.

  • Registrar’s Office: In-person services are temporarily suspended, but the office remains open to serve student remotely by phone (1-866-729-4400 or 902-494-2450) and email (registrar@dal.ca)

  • Student Accounts: In-person services are temporarily suspended, but representatives are available by phone Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Atlantic Time) at 902-494-3998, or email student.accounts@dal.ca

  • Academic Advising: In-person academic advising services have been temporarily suspended at the Bissett Student Success Centre (Halifax), Student Success Centre (Truro), and through faculty/department advisors. Please check for remote contact information for advisors here.

  • Student Health and Wellness: To reduce demand and patient volumes in the Centre, all appointment bookings for non-essential physician and nursing services will either be conducted by telephone or are suspended at this time. Counselling appointments, including same-day counselling appointments will be conducted via telephone.

 

  • Student Accessibility Centre: In-person services at the Student Accessibility Centre have been temporarily suspended. If you would like to contact an advisor remotely, please call 902-494-2836 or email access@dal.ca (Halifax) or ssdalac@dal.ca (Truro).

  • Career Services: In-person career services and advising have been temporarily suspended at the Bissett Student Success Centre (Halifax) and Student Success Centre (Truro). If you would like your resume/cover letter reviewed, please send them to career.services@dal.ca. For career advising, please call 902-494-3077 or email career.services@dal.ca.

  • Writing Centre: In-person services have been temporarily suspended. If you would like to contact an advisor and submit a paper for review remotely, please email writingc@dal.ca (Halifax) or acwrite@dal.ca (Truro).

What is the status of university libraries and learning commons spaces?

All physical locations of the Dal Libraries are closed, but many services are still available through libraries.dal.ca. This includes research and reference assistance through LiveHelp, consultations with liaison librarians over email, and support for remote teaching and learning through Brightspace. If you need a laptop to complete a course, contact library@dal.ca to set up an appointment for pick up. If you can't email, please text (902) 220-5318.   
 
Dalhousie students, staff, and faculty can borrow e-books and e-journals. Document Delivery continues to take requests for content that is not available through online collections.

Library materials belonging to any library in Nova Scotia can be returned through book drops at all five Dal Library locations. Loan periods for items borrowed through Novanet have been extended to September 30, 2020.

Are computer labs closed?

All Dal computer lab locations are closed until further notice. There will be no requirement to be on campus to access a computer lab when classes resume. Faculty will be providing students with information on remote class requirements when classes resume via distance.  

Is the Student Health & Wellness Centre open?

To reduce demand and patient volumes in the Centre, all appointment bookings for non-essential physician and nursing services will either be conducted by telephone or are suspended at this time. Sick notes will also not be provided at this time. Please note that sick notes are not required for students, faculty and staff.

Counselling appointments, including same-day counselling appointments will be conducted via telephone. Those with booked counselling appointments will be contacted by our staff to confirm contact information.  

A COVID-19 Screening Process is now in place at the Student Health & Wellness Centre. All patients will be required to answer 3-4 screening questions provided by Public Health when booking a same-day appointment and/or when checking-in for their appointment.

An online assessment tool is available through Public Health to help you better understand when you should call 811.

If you are concerned you have been exposed to, or may be experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please call the Student Health & Wellness Centre at 902-494-2171 and speak to a health-care professional for support and for screening and advice before coming to the clinic.

Are athletic facilities at Dalhousie closed?

Athletic facilities including Dalplex, Studley Gym, Wickwire Field, Sexton Gym, and Langille Athletic Centre continue to be closed while we work on the safest way to reopen to our members.  

The Government of Nova Scotia recently announced that fitness facilities are permitted to reopen starting June 5, 2020. We are developing a phased reopening plan to allow our community to return safely to our facilities, but we are not able to set a reopening date at this time. Aligning with a broader university-wide “Return to Campus” plan will be a key factor in the reopening of our athletic and recreation facilities. We are working diligently to welcome you back to our facilities as soon as possible.

On March 23, Dal announced it was proactively suspending all monthly membership and service payments as of April 1, 2020. This suspension of fees continues at this time and will remain in place until we are able to re-open to our members. The suspension includes all monthly membership fees, locker rentals and towel services.

Are food service locations open on campus?

Dalhousie Food Services locations (other than approved dining halls) have suspended in-person services at this time.

I have an off-campus meal plan. Can I still use it?

Since residences are now closed to visitors and guests, all current off-campus meal plans have been cancelled. Refunds for unused portions of the meal plan have been applied to the original payment method. For those who purchased using the OneCard option, the refund has been issued to your student account. Any remaining Food Bucks on your account may still be used at select off-campus vendors until the end of the semester.

New off-campus meal plans are not available for purchase at this time. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. If you have additional questions about off campus meal plans or your refund, please contact dalcard@dal.ca.

Will a summer UPass (bus pass) be available for purchase?

Due to the current COVID-19 social distancing measures put in place by Halifax Transit, including the suspension of fare collection until further notice, please be advised that the summer UPass program will not be available and the fee will not be assessed to your student account.

Please see Halifax Transit’s coronavirus page for full information about the changes to their service. 

If you have any questions regarding UPass, please contact upass@dal.ca.

I lost my DalCard. How can I get a replacement?

As the DalCard office is closed at this time, only temporary cards required for specific reasons, such as building access or access to funds, will be made available. These requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  

The DalCard team has established a process to issue temporary cards. If you require a temporary card, email dalcard@dal.ca and a member of the DalCard team will respond as soon as they are able. If you require a temporary card for access to a student residence, please visit your residence’s front desk.

Metro Transit is not currently requiring fares, so UPass users do not need replacement UPass stickers to ride the bus.  

When normal DalCard operations resume, you will be able to get a full replacement card issued.

What if I require access to a building that has been locked due to COVID-19 security protocols?

While Dalhousie remains operational, we have moved to a virtual operational environment. Consequently, campus buildings, offices and services have suspended in-person operations, and are restricting access except for faculty/staff with electronic access control cards.

How is the university managing its response to COVID-19?

Dalhousie has processes and plans in place for dealing with emergencies, including communicable diseases such as COVID-19. Dalhousie’s response is being led by a set of cross-departmental teams:

Several of these groups and teams have been meeting regularly in recent weeks, and all are now engaged and working through the Executive Management Team.


Employees / Work

Is Dalhousie still advising that employees work from home?

All faculty and staff are expected to work remotely. Attendance on campus is strongly discouraged unless directed or permitted to attend work by an administrative head. Employees are expected to stay and work from home. Employees who are self-isolated but otherwise able to work from home are expected to do so.

Virtual operation will not be possible for some employees as many roles will still require physical attendance at work. The safety of these frontline employees is critically important to Dalhousie. Leaders will be held to strict compliance with public health safety requirements for those individuals whose important roles require them to attend work in person. 

The individuals who are permitted as necessary to work or remain on campus are: 

  • Those students in residence who are unable to leave campus due to travel restrictions or personal circumstances. 
  • Those working on essential, exempted research or approved special projects, such as COVID-19 research. 
  • Those providing services to the university, such as systems maintenance, approved ongoing research maintenance, animal care, security, custodial and food service. 
  • Those providing essential health care services, such as the Emergency Dental Clinic.

If you have questions about your specific work or living situation, please discuss with your supervisor, unit head or residence contact.

Visit our employee site for more information on accessing employee resources and services during remote work.

What type of workload should I be maintaining while working from home?

It is expected that, to the extent possible, anyone working remotely will maintain a normal workload. We recognize this is a challenging time, and certain aspects of our broader community’s response to COVID-19, such as school and daycare closures, could impact the ability of employees to work. Supervisors should make every effort to be flexible in the circumstances.

Despite our collective best efforts, there is no way a situation such as this can ever truly be business as usual. Consider what work is most essential to continue. Take breaks, look after yourself and stay healthy.

Visit our new employee site for more information on accessing employee resources and services during remote work.

I am working from home. What do I need to know?


Working from home may require access to appropriate technology.

Here are some resources from ITS (login required) to help you connect to Dalhousie's systems if you are working from home.

It is our priority to ensure that everyone have the necessary equipment to be able to effectively work remotely. To that end, we have provided the following guidelines

Speak with your department head, supervisor or their delegate if you have questions about how best to transfer your workstation into a home environment. 

Visit our new employee site for more information on accessing employee resources and services during remote work.

When does the university expect to reopen?

In alignment with broader public health protocols in our province, some university operations continue to be restricted until at least July 2, 2020. These include on-campus facilities and services that are currently closed or operating remotely (including the Libraries, Dalplex and fitness facilities, etc.) and in-person university events. 

Return to campus planning is well underway. All major decision points are being jointly evaluated by a cross-functional steering group that is developing the overall “Return to Campus” plan across academics, research and operations. This group is collecting information from the broadest areas of the university so that critical areas of importance can be considered into a phased approach that will be further detailed in June.

The fall term for students will be predominantly online, with limited exceptions based on those programs where extensive experiential learning forms part of the curriculum and these can be provided safely in adherence to health protocols. Full in-person, on-campus courses will not resume before January 2021.

What do I do if I have additional questions — or need support?

Your first point of contact should be your department head, supervisor or their delegate.

As this can be a stressful time for many in our community, remember that Dalhousie’s Employee and Family Assistance Program is there for faculty and staff to access at any time. Do not hesitate to reach out if you need support: 1-800-387-4765, https://www.workhealthlife.com/

Visit our new employee site for more information on accessing employee resources and services during remote work.


Research

Am I able to continue my research?

All university campus-based research operations are now suspended until further notice, effective as of 5:00pm on Tuesday, March 24, 2020.   

Critical COVID-19 research is exempted and will continue as a matter of urgency, with full support.  

  • Exceptions will be considered for other time- or resource-sensitive critical projects. Principal Investigators who are conducting research that meets these criteria must have requested permission to continue operations.  
     

  • To be clear, “critical” research is defined here as:
        
    - All research related to COVID-19
    - Highly unique research circumstances that have the approval of the Department Head, Dean, VP Research and Innovation and Provost

Effective April 15, 2020, all off-campus fieldwork activities have been suspended. This includes all field research requiring access to facilities or sites not operated by Dalhousie University (e.g., publicly owned facilities such as parks; privately-owned properties such as farms and/or industrial sites; outdoor marine and aquatic-based research).

Can I continue my research off-campus?

Principal Investigators and their associated research staff, postdoctoral fellows and students, who are able (as determined by the Principal Investigator) to continue their work off-campus and/or online, are expected to do so as long as it is in keeping with guidance provided by Nova Scotia Public Health. All employees who are working will continue to be paid.   

Effective April 15, 2020, all off-campus fieldwork activities have been suspended. This includes all field research requiring access to facilities or sites not operated by Dalhousie University (e.g., publicly owned facilities such as parks; privately-owned properties such as farms and/or industrial sites; outdoor marine and aquatic-based research).

When can we expect labs to reopen?

All researchers are reminded that the university continues to require researchers to work from home, wherever possible. However, any PI with strong reasons to re-start research activity at this time, while the Province still has strict public health guidelines in place, is now able to apply for approval to resume activities. The full, three step process is described here.

Please note that any research project that has already received exceptional approval to proceed during the general shutdown of research imposed on March 25, 2020 may continue. PIs of such projects who now wish to resume other research must also follow the full process to obtain approval for re-opening.

What arrangements are being made for grant-paid research staff?

For all full-time and regular part-time grant-paid research staff (such as research associates) who cannot work remotely, salary will be continued until April 30, 2020. PIs have been asked to consider how they will manage the employment of their research staff after this date. All such decisions will be informed by the needs of labs and/or research projects, the source of grant funding, the nature of each employee’s work and the terms and conditions of individual employee contracts.

  • For advice relating to postdoctoral research fellows and postdoctoral scholars, please contact academic.staff.relations@dal.ca.

  • For advice relating to casual employees, grant paid research staff, or DPMG and/or NSGEU research staff, please contact grantpaid@dal.ca.

  • For advice relating to foreign workers, please contact Karin.mclay@dal.ca

What impact will issues related to COVID-19 have on my research funding?

Research sponsors, including the Tri-agencies, are well aware that the COVID-19 pandemic can affect funded research projects in a number of ways. They are actively assessing the issues and will be sharing further information. Please consult the CIHRNSERC, and SSHRC websites regularly for updates.

I am concerned about meeting the terms of my contract (with industry, a foundation or government department). Who should I contact for assistance?

For those with industry contracts, contact Dal's Industry Liaison and Innovation (ILI) office for help in working with your partners.  

For those who have funding with other partners, such as foundations and government departments, and are concerned about meeting the terms of your agreement, please contact the Office of Research Services.

I have specific questions about animal research or research involving human participants. Who should I contact?

How can I get regular updates on research at Dalhousie?

Please monitor updates to this FAQ, and consult the Research webpage at dal.ca/research. It is also the intention to continue producing the weekly Office of Research Services (ORS) Newsletter, which is normally issued on Mondays and will contain updates. 

Any additional questions can be sent to Jennifer Morawiecki, Chief of Staff for the Office of the Vice-President Research and Innovation (ovpri@dal.ca).  We will continue to provide relevant updates, as they arise, via the university’s COVID-19 site at dal.ca/coronavirus.


Online Teaching

Where can I get help in developing/adapting courses for online delivery for the Fall term?

Dalhousie is investing in over $1 million in technology development, additional online instruction training and increased online supports for students and instructors. Our student experience team is undertaking considerable work to ensure our fall experience is robust and comprehensive. 

Our academic team is working on detailed plans on a course-by-course basis. We expect to have more detail to share with you in June. 

The Centre for Learning and Teaching (CLT) at Dalhousie is offering a suite of online panels, webinars, and workshops for faculty at Dal and other institutions across Atlantic Canada. These sessions provide faculty with the opportunity to ask questions of their peers with experience in online course design, remote teaching, and creating an engaging experience for students. You can learn more about upcoming sessions here and find further guidance and advice on CLT's Focus blog.


Travel

Is the university advising of travel restrictions?

All university travel is currently restricted until July 2, 2020, at a minimum, due to COVID-19 restrictions.

University-funded travel is further restricted until December 31, 2020 as a cost-reduction measure. Exceptions will only be permitted with approval of your respective Vice-President. This restriction only applies to travel funded through the operating budget. Grant-paid travel and travel funded through the DFA Travel Fund and/or sabbatical research grants will be permitted after general health restrictions on travel are lifted.

How do I get reimbursed for cancelled travel?

Faculty, students and staff who have been directed by Dalhousie to cancel travel for university purposes should follow this guidance:

  • In the event that a trip is cancelled, and all or a portion of the costs of the trip have been paid (conference fees, airfare, accommodations, etc.), the traveller should investigate and obtain any refunds available from conference organizers, airline (refund or credit) and hotels or through trip cancellation insurance.

  • For funded research related travel, the Tri-agencies (CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC) have confirmed that the reimbursement of non-refundable travel fees from agency funds is acceptable considering the impacts of COVID-19.  This applies to the travel of both principal investigators and research personnel.

  • For research-related travel funded by an agency other than the Tri-agencies, reimbursement of non-refundable travel fees will be based on guidance issued by the specific agency. In the event that a research funding agency confirms that reimbursement of non-refundable travel is not acceptable, Dalhousie will reimburse, and cost should be charged to an alternate research or Faculty account where the charge is allowable.

  • Reimbursement of other non-refundable faculty and staff travel (ie non-research) cancelled due to issues related to COVID 19 is acceptable and should be charged to the account that would otherwise would have been charged had the travel not been cancelled.  

The following procedures should be followed when a travel advance had been provided by the university for a cancelled trip:

  1. Refunds obtained should be returned to Financial Services by submitting a deposit advice form and cheque to the cashier’s office.

  2. Prepare a travel claim with the details of refunds and credits and include a copy of the deposit advice along with correspondence notifying the cancellation of the conference/meeting.
    a. If the airline will provide a credit rather than refund and another business trip is expected within the next 12 months (or time period that the credit is available), the travel advance can remain open with an adjusted ‘end’ date for clearing the advance. Please document this on claim.
    b. If another business trip is not expected but the airline credit will be used for personal travel, the amount of the credit minus the change fee will need to be refunded to Dalhousie.  Please document this on claim.

When a trip has been cancelled and no advance was provided by Dalhousie, the non-refundable costs can be reimbursed by following the procedures described in #2 above.  If a reimbursement was received through travel credits, a travel advance can be provided as described above. The non-refundable costs should be charged to the account that would otherwise would have been charged had the travel not been cancelled. 
   
Questions can be sent to travel@dal.ca.

I am an international student who was abroad or who was approved for a study permit when Canadian travel restrictions went into effect. Can I return to or enter Canada?

Yes, international students who held a valid study permit or had been approved for a study permit when the travel restrictions took effect on March 18 will be allow to enter the country. 

Please note that health screening protocols will be followed before travel and all individuals entering the country from abroad will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival.

Up to date information about how Covid-19 is affecting Canadian immigration processes can be found here.

I am a permanent resident applicant who has been approved for permanent residence in Canada but who has not yet travelled to Canada. Can I enter Canada?

The government is allowing permanent resident applicants who had been approved for permanent residence before the travel restrictions were announced on March 16 but who had not yet travelled to Canada to enter. 

Please note that health screening protocols will be followed before travel and all individuals entering the country from abroad will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival. 

Up to date information about how Covid-19 is affecting Canadian immigration processes can be found here.

I am a foreign national who was recruited to work at Dalhousie and am eligible to apply for a work permit. Can I enter Canada?

The federal government is allowing temporary foreign workers to enter Canada.   

Please note that health screening protocols will be followed before travel and all individuals entering the country from abroad will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival.  

Up to date information about how Covid-19 is affecting Canadian immigration processes can be found here.


Events & Gatherings

What is the status of events on campus?

In alignment with broader public health protocols in our province, we are extending current restrictions in place around university operations and activities until at least July 2, 2020. Previously, some of these restrictions were set to expire on June 1 or earlier. These include: on-campus facilities and services that are currently closed or operating remotely (including the Libraries, Dalplex and fitness facilities, etc.) and university in-person events.

Campus events can be submitted to the Dalhousie Events Calendar. However, at this time, we are only accepting listings for events that are a) set to take place after July 2, or b) taking place virtually (via livestream, etc.). 

Submissions can be made here (Dal NetID and password required).


Health Precautions/Impact

What can I do to protect myself?

Please refer to the Public Health Agency of Canada website and Nova Scotia Public Health for the latest information.

What e-mental health tools are available to support me from home?

In addition to a telephone counselling appointments with Student Health & Wellness, students can also access the below online and mobile mental health resources:

•    Good2Talk
Free and confidential counselling for post-secondary students.
Call 1-833-292-3698 or text GOOD2TALKNS to 686868
dal.ca/good2talk

•    Ask a Nurse
Ask your health-related questions online and get confidential answers within 72 hours
dal.ca/askanurse

•    TAO
An online mental health library with interactive modules to help you understand how you think, act and feel
www.dal.ca/tao

•    Q-Life
A resiliency training program
dal.ca/resilienceproject

Who should I contact if I have concerns?

  Health-related inquiries
Travel-related inquiries
Dalhousie students If you are concerned you have been exposed to, or may be experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please check 811.novascotia.ca for information on assessment.

All other inquiries may be directed to:

Student Health and Wellness
902-494-2171 (Halifax)
902-893-6369 (Truro)

International Centre
902-494-1566 (Halifax)
902-893-6672 (Truro)
international.centre@dal.ca
Dalhousie faculty and staff
Contact your family doctor or check 811.novascotia.ca, or

Call the Government of Canada COVID-19 information line at 1-833-784-4397, or

Employee Family and Assistance program
1-800-387-4765

Human Resources
902-456-8784
hr@dal.ca

 

If you have further questions please contact covid19@dal.ca