Practical instructions of the Faculty of Theology for the exceptional circumstances

University of Helsinki has declared the implementation of exceptional measures due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Page updated on 5 March, 2021

Please note that, as of 16 March 2020, all information on the coronavirus outbreak can be found on the University of Helsinki’s external website via the links above. Flamma and email lists will no longer be used for this purpose.

Below are further details from the Faculty of Theology.

Further instructions for the Faculty of Theology

Contact teaching and exams, autumn 2021

Updated March 5, 2021

The teaching in the fall term at the Faculty of Theology will be organized mainly as remote teaching. Permission for contact teaching will be applied for in the same way as was done for the spring term. Contact teaching can be granted for groups of max. 50 students.

As there may not be enough facilities to accommodate all requests, facilities for contact teaching will be reserved according to the following order of priority:

  1. PSP: 1–3 meetings / possibility to hold group or individual meetings
  2. Equipment (software, rooms with special equipment etc.): rooms are booked only for the meetings when use of the equipment is required (1–100 % contact teaching)
  3. First-year students (BA/MA): max. 2 courses during the fall term
  4. Exams
  5. Seminars/ proseminars / doctoral research seminars 1–3 meetings
  6. Intermediate studies: max. 1 course as a whole or 2 courses 50 % as contact teaching per selection group
  7. Other reasons: 1–3 meetings

Small group teaching will be prioritized in the contact teaching. Mass lectures (over 50 students) will be delivered remotely. The aim of the priority order is to offer some possibility for contact teaching for all students and this should be considered, when possible, in the planning in the department and degree programme as well.

Evaluating the need for contact teaching and submitting the applications

  • The responsible teacher of each study unit evaluates if the study unit or some parts of it are necessary to organize as face-to-face teaching. If necessary, the priorities should be discussed in the department or degree programme.
  • The responsible teacher will notify the faculty of the need for face-to-face teaching and the reasoning behind the request with an e-form by March 21, 2021.
  • In case all contact teaching applied for cannot be organized, for example due to a shortage of suitable rooms, the directors of the programs will prioritize the applications.
  • Streaming lectures: If you want to open your contact teaching also for remote attendance, please mention it in your application. This way we can book you a room suitable for streaming the session. If you want the teaching to be attended remotely only, but need a room for yourself to arrange the streaming, please mention also this in your application.
  • The reservations will be made in the usual way through the automatic scheduling in Optime. If existing reservations need to be changed, always contact metsatalo-timetable@helsinki.fi.
  • Please note that the recommendation for remote teaching applies to all teaching, regardless of where it takes place. This means that contact teaching outside the university premises is also not allowed.
  • The teaching arrangements must always adhere to the general safety instructions of the Finnish authorities and the university. Safety distances have to be maintained at all times, and everyone is expected to wear a protective mask during all contact teaching. The instructions are subject to change if the situation with coronavirus changes. Up-to-date general guidelines related to the situation can be found on the University’s webpages:
  • The list of students enrolled on a course has to be kept up to date for the purpose of tracing possible covid exposure situations.
  • Compulsory class attendance does not apply to contact teaching. It is not therefore possible to require a student to attend contact teaching. If teaching is organized as contact teaching, the teacher is not required to organize remote teaching along with it. In these cases, a student will study independently according to the teacher’s instructions, if independent studying is possible. Students must notify the teacher that they belong to an at-risk group and cannot attend contact teaching.

Contact teaching and exams, spring 2021

Updated March 5, 2021

All teaching in the spring semester will be, until 28 March, organised remotely, except for faculty exams and certain courses requiring special facilities. We have been in contact with teachers whose courses had reservations during this time period.

Reservations for contact teaching after 28 March will not be cancelled yet, but the situation will be monitored closely. We will not be making new reservations until we know more about how the situation is developing.

Please note that reservations made only for the teacher to stream lectures are also made through metsatalo-timetable@helsinki.fi. We will notify the porters of the reservations. The University's buildings are closed until 28 March.

Faculty exams will be organised as classroom exams, but with special arrangements. Exam services will provide more detailed information to students who have registered for the exams. Bear in mind also alternative arrangements for faculty exams. It is hoped that as few students as possible will attend the exam.

Use of offices

Due to the coronavirus situation, the telecommuting recommendation for staff remains valid until 31 December 2020. We hope that as many Faculty employees as possible continue working remotely. If telecommuting is not possible, employees are asked to give notification of returning to work on Faculty premises. The notification is to be made to the response centre by writing to grp-teol-tdk-covid19-tk@helsinki.fi. In your message, please describe briefly the grounds for working on University premises, such as the conduct of research or poor occupational ergonomics at home. Depending on individual circumstances, working at the workplace may be a good option in terms of coping at work and concentrating on work duties.

Working on the Faculty premises is not allowed without notification and an agreement with the response centre. The notification obligation pertains to working on Faculty premises in autumn 2020. By following this procedure, the Faculty collects information on the persons working on Faculty premises in a centralised manner, making it possible to carry out contact tracing, if necessary. The response centre processes notifications on a weekly basis. A link to the facility booking system will be sent to everyone who submits a notification.

No permit is needed for brief visits to offices.

Meetings on Faculty premises

Until 31 December 2020, meetings will be primarily held remotely. If convening in person in Faculty meeting rooms or offices is necessary, notification must be given to the Faculty’s response centre by writing to grp-teol-tdk-covid19-tk@helsinki.fi. The notification must include the time and participants of the meeting. Meeting permits are processed as quickly as possible. Social distancing rules and other safety regulations must be observed in meetings.

Examinarium exams

Updated 30 November 2020

Examinarium exams that are already in WebOodi will be organised, but it is no longer allowed to create new exams. If a student asks for an exam, consider first other completion methods. If the exam is absolutely necessary, the teacher asks for permission for an exam by sending an e-mail to metsatalo-timetable@helsinki.fi.

The latest decisions made by the coronavirus management team are valid from 30 November 2020 to 10 January 2021, unless well-grounded reasons for amending them arise earlier. 

Specified instructions in the Faculty of Theology for organizing teaching in the spring of 2021

Due to the coronavirus situation, the University of Helsinki has decided that remote teaching is recommended also in the spring of 2021. The spring term’s teaching at the Faculty of Theology will be organized mainly as remote teaching.

Facilities were booked according to applications for contact teaching made by teachers. Up-to-date information on teaching will be has been updated in WebOodi.

Registration for courses starting in the third period begins 2 December. Students will be instructed to check the course pages to see how courses will be organized. For this reason, it is important that teachers add information on distance and contact teaching on the course pages.

We will make all reservations for teaching facilities centrally, based on the applications. Please do not send direct requests for changes to the coordinators of your programs, and do not make reservations independently, e.g. through Optime Portal. If existing reservations need to be changed, always contact metsatalo-timetable@helsinki.fi.

As there may not be enough facilities to accommodate all requests, the Faculty’s response center has decided that facilities for contact teaching will be booked according to the following order of priority:

  1. PSP (personal study plan) and orientation: 1– 3 meetings per group / meetings in groups or individually are possible
  2. Equipment needed in teaching (software, rooms with special equipment etc.): rooms can be booked for the occasions when use of the equipment is required (1–100 % of contact teaching)
  3. First-year students: max. 2 courses during the spring term
  4. Examinations (e.g. end-of-course exams)
  5. Proseminars / Master’s seminars / Doctoral research seminars: 1– 3 meetings
  6. Intermediate studies: max. one course 100 % or two courses 50 % as contact teaching
  7. Other reasons: 1– 3 meetings

 

  • Please note that the recommendation for remote teaching applies to all teaching, regardless of where it takes place. This means that contact teaching outside the university premises is also not allowed. Please note also that the teaching times already agreed on might have to be changed based on the availability of suitable rooms. The rooms will nevertheless be booked according to the lecture’s original length and original group size It’s therefore not allowed, for example, to combine several planned sessions into a single, long contact teaching session
  • The teaching arrangements must always adhere to the general safety instructions of the Finnish authorities and the university. Safety distances have to be maintained at all times, and everyone is expected to wear a protective mask during all contact teaching. The instructions are subject to change if the situation with coronavirus changes. Up-to-date general guidelines related to the situation can be found on this page and the University’s webpage: Corona virus situation at the University of Helsinki.
  • The list of students enrolled on a course has to be kept up to date for the purpose of tracing possible covid exposure situations.
  • Compulsory class attendance does not apply to contact teaching. It is not therefore possible to require a student to attend contact teaching. If teaching is organized as contact teaching, the teacher is not required to organize remote teaching along with it. In these cases, a student will study independently according to the teacher’s instructions, if independent studying is possible. Students must notify the teacher that they belong to an at-risk group and cannot attend contact teaching.

Faculty of Theology: Instructions for organizing teaching in the fall semester 2020

Due to the coronavirus situation, the University of Helsinki has decided that remote teaching is strongly recommended also in the fall semester 2020 (University-level plan A). The Faculty of Theology has decided on the following specifications on the university’s general guidelines for organizing teaching in the fall semester:

  • As a rule, teaching at the Faculty of Theology will be organized as remote teaching during the fall semester. This course of action is necessary because the required safety distances of 1–2 meters significantly limit the use of the teaching facilities at the City Centre Campus, and there are many different units using these facilities.

Contact teaching

  • The first PSP guidance meeting for first-year students will be held on location at university premises. 
  • All other teaching should, as a rule, be organized as remote teaching. Teaching for a course / part of a course can be offered on location at university premises only in cases where arranging face-to-face teaching is absolutely necessary. This type of teaching includes, for example, teaching that requires special facilities, equipment or programmes. Decisions on contact teaching were made in summer 2020.
  • All room bookings for the fall will be made through metsatalo-timetable(at)helsinki.fi. Inquiries can be sent o this address.
  • Teachers must collect a list of names in all occasions of contact teaching, courses or other, in case of an infection and a subsequent need to track down people that could have been exposed.
  • If a course is organized as face-to-face teaching, the teacher is not required to arrange a parallel remote teaching option. In these cases, the student will complete the teaching through independent study as instructed by the teacher, if possible to arrange. Students are required to notify the teachers if they belong to a risk group and cannot participate in face-to-face teaching.
  • Teachers are not required to make a recording of any face-to-face teaching events for students to watch at a later date. The university regulations on compulsory attendance have been revoked until further notice. This means that absence in itself cannot be used as grounds for failing a student. It’s nevertheless possible to utilize methods of completion that require attendance (e.g. group discussions).

For students

Complementary information for students at the Faculty of Theology (in Finnish)

Faculty of Theology response center contact information

Response center lead, dean Antti Räsänen (available outside business hours)
Head of academic affairs Anu Holvikivi (available outside business hours)
Professor Jutta Jokiranta
University lecturer Mikko Ketola
Head of human resources Hanna Lotti
Professor Petri Luomanen
Head of faculty administration Varpu Myllyniemi
Communications specialist Niina Niskanen
Coordinator Sonja Pakarinen
University lecturer Heikki Pesonen
Professor Sami Pihlström
The Faculty Association for Theology Students chairperson Inka Pänkäläinen
Professor Elina Vuola

If teachers encounter problems, they can also contact the degree programme directors.