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COVID-19 FAQ: your academic year at ULB

Academic year 2020-2021 : find on this page all the information about ULB for a smooth start to the academic year.

An adaptable system has been put in place for the 2020-2021 academic year based on the evolution of the epidemiological situation. Different possible scenarios ranging from green (zero risk) to red (high risk), through yellow (low risk) and orange (moderate risk) have been considered.

Subject to the evolution of the spread of Covid-19, the academic year 2020-2021 is until now coded "yellow".
 

To protect yourself and others, respect the sanitary measures and keep your distance.

 

 If you are or feel ill, stay home.

Wash your hands regularly.

Keep a minimum distance of 1.50m (5 feet) between people.

Wearing a mask is mandatory.

 

Respect the flow of traffic on campus, keep to the right and follow the entrance and exit signs

Over the course of a week, always stay in the same area in the auditoriums and classrooms.

Disinfect your work surfaces before and after use.

Clean your equipment regularly.

 

Use disposable tissues and discard them afterwards.

If you test positive for Covid, report it to covid@ulb.be

 

Face masks and shields

As of now, and in accordance with the latest ministry protocol released on August 25, face masks are mandatory for students and teachers, in auditoriums, classrooms, laboratories, workshops, etc.
Regardless of whether they are wearing a face mask, teachers must remain at least 1 metre (3 feet) away from students, including during lab work, practical work, workshops, etc.
Face shields may be worn in addition to face masks. This means that face shields are optional, and cannot replace face masks.

Exceptions to wearing a mask:

  • When the wearing of a mask or any other fabric alternative is not possible for medical reasons, a face shield should be used;
  • Persons who, due to a situation of disability as attested by a medical certificate, are unable to wear a mask, fabric alternative or face shield, are exempted from wearing a mask or a face shield alternative;
  • Due to the difficulty of being audible in a large auditorium, for class groups of more than 50 students, the teacher/speaker is exempted from wearing a mask provided that a physical distance of at least 3 metres is maintained between him/her and the participants.
 

Reduction of the number of people present on campus

The recommendations and measures implemented take into account the requirement to reduce high student density by 25% on campus (‘yellow’ scenario), while taking care to provide the highest quality of teaching possible. This means:

  • limiting the number of students in each room: every other seat must remain unoccupied, and preventative measures must be followed,
  • limiting the number of students in the libraries,
  • limiting students’ movement on campus by consolidating in-person classes for the same cohorts into half days.

However, exemptions are permitted for practical work, laboratory classes, workshops, and projects.

Student clubs

Students have decided not to organize activities in Q1 (events rescheduled to Q2).

Cultural activities and events

A café will be installed on the AGORA, where activities can be organized for welcoming new students. ULB will provide support to student clubs for these activities.
In this context, all initiatives aimed at making life on campus more pleasant and festive are welcome. For information about ULB support, please contact the Vice-Rector for Student Affairs.

Project MUFINS

As part of project MUFINS, funded by Innoviris in partnership with Brussels Major Events (BME), the wireless communications laboratory has developed a crowd monitoring system (in full compliance with privacy standards). The system calculates crowd density in a given area in real-time, and makes short- and medium-term forecasts.
ULB will deploy it on its three main campuses (Solbosch, La Plaine, Erasme) in order to monitor the number of people in key areas, starting next academic year. The first areas will be equipped in October 2020.

Physical distancing and movement

Outdoors

It is recommended that everyone follow the signs installed on the campuses’ main walkways in order to limit crossing paths, and maintain a 1.5-metre (5-foot) distance from others.

 Indoors (corridors, halls, etc.)

  • A distance of at least 1.5 metres (5 feet) between people is recommended (on campus, in queues, at the entrance of buildings and auditoriums, etc.).
  • Observe the indications provided to regulate foot traffic on campus, keep right in corridors, and use the posted entrances and exits to buildings, classrooms, auditoriums, etc.

Auditoriums

  • Stay at least 1.5 metres (5 feet) away from other people (in queues, at the entrance of auditoriums, etc.).
  • Use the posted entrances and exits.

Restaurants

The University’s restaurants will open when classes resume, with new menus.

  • Every other seat must be left unoccupied.
  • Restaurants must remain free of congestion. At the back of the Janson auditorium and of building S, canopies and tables will be installed in order to create areas where staff and students can relax.
  • Opposite these two areas, a strip of the outdoor car park will be reserved for food trucks sent by our catering partners.

Sports

Registration for the "Sports Card" subscription is open on our MyULBSports portal or by appointment with Mr Thierry Lempkovicz.
In accordance with the protocols established by the Wallonia-Brussels Federation and so that everyone can practise their sporting activity with peace of mind, ULB Sports has set up a "Sport Secure" protocol.
This implies, in addition to the presentation of the Sports Card, compulsory registration for each ULB Sports course session.
This registration is done exclusively via the NOVA SPORT app, which can be downloaded free of charge from 10 September (App store or Google playstore) and which works exclusively with a smartphone.
Without registration, no access to the courses will be possible.
Discover all the measures implemented as part of the "Sport Secure" protocol.
 

Welcome Pack

A Welcome Pack will be given to all students at the start of the academic year.
A tote bag made of fair trade cotton, it contains:

  • 2 ULB face masks
  • 5 reusable wipes, machine washable at 60 °C
  • 1 refillable sanitizer spray bottle
  • An information flyer

The Welcome Pack is put together by a company that employs people with disabilities.
It will be handed out by students on campus, under gazebos bearing ULB’s logo.

Organization of classes

The University’s current plans are based on the assumption of a ‘yellow’ scenario; it must be noted that ‘orange’ or ‘red’ scenarios may be activated during the academic year. These scenarios will have significant impacts on teaching activities. It may be worth taking this risk into account as soon as the academic year begins.

Schedule

Classes begin 15 minutes later and end 15 minutes earlier than their regular scheduled times, in order to allow for students to enter and leave, and for the room to be aired and cleaned by the students who are leaving and entering.
E.g. 10:15 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. instead of the regular scheduled class from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Preventative measures

  • Students must wear face masks
  • Hand-sanitizer dispensers are available at the entrance to each building
 

Ventilation

  • Whenever possible, auditoriums must be ventilated during class.
  • When this is not possible, they must be aired during the 30-minute pause between classes.
  • Teachers shall do this by opening all of the room’s doors and/or windows.

 In-person classes with 50+ students

  • Occupancy: every other seat must be left unoccupied. Auditoriums will be assigned based on the number of students registered to each course.
  • Class availability: Classes must be recorded, or otherwise made available to students who cannot be present (e.g. Teams, podcast, recorded PPT);
  • Auditorium assignments: If a decision must be made regarding the use of a classroom, classes with BA1 students shall be given priority.
  • Special rules apply to activities with fewer than 50 students, such as practical work, laboratory work, workshops, and projects.

In-person classes with fewer than 50 students

  • Every other seat must be left unoccupied, except for practical work, laboratory work, workshops, and projects.
  • Face masks are mandatory for teachers (face shield optional).
  • Favour 2-hour classes (in order to optimize the use of auditoriums). Requests for exceptions to the maximum duration of 3 hours can be submitted to the VR in Education (laboratory work, practical work, and workshops).

Delimitation

  • The Auditoriums seating 50+ will be divided into 4 easily identifiable areas: green, red, yellow and blue.
  • The 4 areas will be separated by stairs or by two rows of unoccupied seats.
  • Signs will be posted at the entrance of auditoriums.
  • Inside the auditoriums, every other seat will be marked as unavailable using tape of the colour of the corresponding area, making the 4 areas clearly visible.
  • It is recommended that students always sit in the same area or, at least, change no more than once a week.

Cleaning and sanitizing

  • Classrooms are cleaned daily, except for floors, which are cleaned weekly.
  • Writing and work surfaces are systematically sanitized by their users before they leave.
  • However, it is also recommended that students also sanitize them before sitting down.
  • Students are put in charge of sanitizing.
  • Each student will receive a sanitizer spray bottle (Welcome Pack)
  • Shared equipment (in laboratories, computer rooms, practical workrooms, libraries) are sanitized after use (pre-use or at the end of the class).
  • After practical work and laboratory work sessions, the cleaning is carried out by students under the teacher’s supervision.
  • In libraries, equipment (e.g. printers) is cleaned by the students.
  • Hand sanitizer dispensers are available at each building entrance

International students

Depending on your home zone, you may need to quarantine yourself for a fortnight. Should it be your case, please follow the recommendations issued by Sciensano:

  • Students must stay at a unique address. The address of this accommodation must be communicated to the students in advance so that they can duly fill in the passenger location form.
  • Any contact with other people should be avoided, including people who stay in the same house/location (keep a distance of 1.5 m remains the general rule).
  • Towels, bed linen and kitchen utensils must not be shared with other roommates. If possible, the person in quarantine should use a separate toilet and bathroom.
  • Students must be reachable at all times by the health authorities, and if necessary, cooperate by listing their close contacts (social bubble).
  • Visits by "external" people are not allowed.
  • Physical participation in social and academic activities is not permitted during this 14-day period. Classes can only be taken online, not on campus.
  • The quarantine cannot be carried out with people at risk (for example, people over 65 years of age, people with an underlying medical condition such as heart, lung or kidney problems, or people with weakened immunity).
  • Students may leave their residence - if wearing a face mask - for basic needs such as purchasing food or medical supplies, arranging urgent financial matters, etc.
  • The use of public transport should be avoided as much as possible. 
For students who could not carry out their quarantine in a university residence, ULB has struck flat-rate deals with the following Appart Hotels:
  • Appart Hotel les Citadines Toison d'or: (260 EUR for 14 nights + tourist tax 4.24 EUR/night - 59,36 EUR) = 319,36 EUR in total.
  • Appart Hotel Adagio Delta (opening 15/09): (375 EUR for 14 nights + tourist tax 4.24 EUR/night - 59.36 EUR) = 434.36 EUR in total
  • Hotel Ibis Erasmus: Same rates as the Adagio above.
  • Contact the ULB Housing Office for any question at + 32 (0)2 650 49 23 or by email: office.du.logement@ulb.be. You can also make an appointment on the ULB Accommodation page.
Updated on September 10, 2020