Online Teaching and Learning for Final Weeks of Semester 1, 2019-20

Dear students

Thank you for working with us to transition to online teaching and learning for these final weeks of Semester 1, 2019-20. I am writing to you now about assessment.

Our core principle for all course assessment is fairness to each and every member of the class, whether in Hong Kong or outside. To deliver on this principle in the current circumstances, we believe we need to offer you an array of choices for each course you are taking. Just occasionally this is not possible because of professional requirements. For the vast majority of our courses, however, it is possible and we intend to make it happen.

Full-year courses

As final examinations are scheduled for May 2020, these courses will continue without amendment.

Single-semester courses: teachers

We are giving teachers the flexibility to make changes to their assessment arrangements and inform their students through Moodle and/or by email by Friday 29 November 2019:

–          Scope of course assessment: This may be adjusted in some cases.
–          Summative/final assessments: Most proctored final examinations will be converted to alternative tasks submitted via Moodle or HKU email with Turnitin reports.

Single-semester courses: students

We are giving students the flexibility to choose one of the following for each of their courses by completing a simple form and submitting it to their Faculty Office:

–      Continue with Letter grading for the entire course (contributing to GPA).
–      Change to Pass/Fail grading for the entire course (not contributing to GPA).
–      Opt out of the course entirely through a new Late Drop option.

When thinking through these options, students should bear in mind several issues (if you are in doubt about any of them, please seek academic advice from your teachers, course coordinators, programme leader or academic adviser):

–      Some of the above options cannot be made available for some courses, mostly for reasons of professional accreditation.
–      Core or compulsory courses have to be completed by all students taking a programme, so the Late Drop option should be exercised with extreme caution.
–      Courses that are prerequisite for subsequent courses within a programme affect academic progression, so again the Late Drop option should be exercised with extreme caution.
–      The Common Core Special Proviso for GPA calculation operates only when there are six graded courses (https://commoncore.hku.hk/special-proviso/).

To process your course choices, we will ask you to complete and submit a simple form by 5:00pm, Friday 6 December 2019. Your Faculty will contact you soon about online submission arrangements. No late submissions will be accepted. Any student who does not submit a completed form by the deadline will have unchanged course assessment arrangements for all courses taken in Semester 1, 2019-20.

I appreciate your understanding as we seek to fulfil our teaching commitments and facilitate your learning in the closing weeks of the semester. As ever, please feel free to contact me with any queries.

Best wishes, Ian

Professor Ian Holliday
Vice-President (Teaching and Learning)
The University of Hong Kong