2020/2021 Academic Year Guidance

For national information and updates on COVID-19, please see  

2020/2021 Trimester 1 Guidance for students

2020/2021 Trimester 1 Guidance for students

Published 3 September 2020

Guidance for Continuing Students

The School of Medicine extends a very warm welcome to our students who have already arrived back on clinical sites and we look forward to welcoming further continuing students later this month.

The University has been provided with specific guidance to ensure that our campus will operate within the appropriate distancing constraints as described by the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science and the Implementation Guidelines for Public Health Measures in Higher Education Institutions endorsed by the HSE. This has assisted with plans for your registration teaching, learning and assessment in the coming Autumn Trimester. Please note that:

  • Registration to modules will commence on Monday 7 September and you will find the registration date for your programme on the Student and Registry key dates website.
  • As with previous years, there will be a staggered module registration schedule which invites students of specific programmes to register to their modules on specific days. 
  • When you register you will receive your own personalised timetable which will allow you to structure your study online and identify the periods when you are expected on campus.  
  • In addition, you will receive supplementary scheduling information about campus attendance in your modules. This will be finalised after registration and communicated by your module coordinators.  

Your attention is drawn to a series of FAQs on teaching, learning and assessment for the Autumn Trimester and it is very important that you read these carefully as they detail the University’s approach to teaching, learning and assessment during this coming Autumn Trimester. The same COVID-19 protective measures that you are familiar with in your everyday life will apply to University activities and we all must comply with these measures. Protection against COVID-19 is a mutual responsibility shared by all students, faculty, staff and users of the campus; to that end we will require you to agree to abide by such guidance through a formal declaration at registration. Our guidance will continue to evolve as Government and public health advice develops and as term commencement draws closer. 

Please see the Short Guide for Students Coming to Campus.


Published 9 July 2020

The School of Medicine has agreed details of how teaching, learning and assessment will be conducted for the coming Autumn Trimester, in line with public health guidance.

We aim to give you the best possible campus and blended learning experience, and the 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 in maintaining this experience, we seek to ensure that our students access and use our campuses to the greatest extent possible. Therefore we encourage you to book accommodation as close to campus as is possible. 


The School of Medicine has adopted the following general teaching and assessment principles for the Autumn Trimester:

  • Essential practical teaching sessions, small group teaching, tutorials and PBL sessions will be prioritised for face to face delivery.
  • Where this isn’t possible, lectures will be delivered remotely; synchronously using scheduled timeslots (and recorded and made available through Brightspace) and asynchronously, through pre-recordings, in some cases.
  • Clinical placement planning and calendars have been amended to account for ongoing social distancing, and other restrictions, in primary care and in hospitals.
  • Module assessment will, as much as possible, incorporate an in-trimester or continuous assessment approach. However, there will be a need to maintain some timed and invigilated examinations.

General Information

Please see the UCD COVID-19 Special Arrangements.

For detailed information on orientation, registration and the support available to you this Trimester, please go to the UCD New Students website

Research Queries

For changes and impacts to UCD research as a result of COVID-19, please see the below FAQs and Guidelines.


COVID-19 Research FAQ.

COVID-19 Guidelines for Graduate Research Students & Staff

Teaching Queries

General Approach

We appreciate your concerns and anxieties at this time and we are working consistently to ensure that the disruption to your education is minimsed.
To ensure that our students continue their learning journeys with minimum disruption, from March 23 through to the end of the academic year we will be adopting an at-distance teaching and learning model.
We will continue to programme teaching activities for each module in a timetable as usual, and academics and tutors will continue to interact with their students in line with this timetable to the greatest extent possible, but through electronic means.
Some lectures will be podcasted, but opportunities for students to interact with each other and their lecturers remotely will be maintained. Tutorials and group work will be mediated through on-line chat rooms and video services. In most cases (except for a small number of clinical programmes) all assessment, including final exams, will take place at distance.

School-Specific Direction to Students

The University has published FAQ for Students, has cascaded these to all students by email and has posted this guidance on its website.

The School continues to roll out contingency plans speciific for each individual programme and stage.  Depending on circumstances, this arrangement may have to update as the situation develops. We will inform you immediately if the situation changes, stay in touch via Brightspace and email.
Each Stage will have received detailed information by email.  Please be guided by these directions and any follow-up by Module Coordinators, via BrightSpace and by email correspondence from our Programme Offices.
It is preferrable if everyone relies on this primary information source rather than relay on second-hand (and possibly out-of-date) information.

Please note that you remain a full time registered student with a defined programme workload. We are planning well ahead so that you can graduate on schedule and it is imperative that you adhere to all scheduled activities. Academic Regulations continue to apply and if you do not complete your online teaching or assessment as scheduled for any reason, then usual procedures must be followed in respect of these.

For those with forthcoming assessments, you should, for now focus on preparing for these upcoming assessments which will go ahead as scheduled. Each module will post required updates on Brightspace so please continue to check these.  We wish you all the very very best of luck in your upcoming assessments, and please do stay safe.

There are a number of specific questions on which the School can now give specific direction, as approved by the Dean:

Is recording of lectures on Brightspace for later streaming by students permitted?

Yes; recording of lectures is not just permitted, but required for the participation of our international students in different time zones

How do I record my teaching in Brightspace?

This was covered in the TEL workshops and is also included in the 'How-to" guide put together by the TEL team. If you have not received a copy and need one please contact Adam Tattersall.

Is recording of material including lectures as MP4 files for downloading permitted?

Yes. However, it is important to remember that MP4 files may easily be disseminated, including on Youtube and other widely accessible platforms. If you are happy for that to be done by others and confident that such dissemination would not violate copyright, you may provide recording of lectures and other materials in MP4 or similar downloadable formats

What is the guidance regarding copyright?

Lecturers must ensure that the materials they record and provide to students do not violate copyright.

For Our International Students

If you have a specific query about an academic matter in a module, please contact the Module Coordinator.  

If you have any general queries, please reach out to international.medicine@ucd.ie or if programme specific queries, the Medicine Progamme Office via the contact form.

We also encourage you to have a look at the UCD Global FAQs and pages. 

Wishing you continued success in your studies and looking forward to seeing you back in UCD and Dublin.

Best wishes
Dr Patrick Felle
Associate Dean for Medicine International 


Please refer to the UCD Central FAQ page.