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Corona FAQ / Novel Coronavirus

LAST MODIFIED: FRI 3 APR 2020 11.00 (AM)

The coronavirus (COVID-19) leads to many questions about the consequences for The Netherlands and the University of Twente.

At the moment, the barrier for interpersonal attention is perhaps somewhat higher than usual, because we do not physically meet. At the same time, it is maybe even more important that we look after each other and ourselves. Discuss issues if you feel the need to do so. Students with problems can contact their study advisor, who can support them in various ways.

The University of Twente is keeping a close eye on the current situation regarding to the new coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, and is contact with students and staff, as much as possible. We support our students (including newcomers and students abroad), employees, visitors and guests, and therefore follow, as much as possible, the advice and recommendations of the official institutions, such as RIVM, GGD, Rijksoverheid, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), the national government and the World Health Organization (WHO). No coronavirus cases have been identified at the UT at this time.

Frequently asked questions

Updates

Items that have been changed recently are marked with "UPDATE", including the date.

General measurements

UPDATE (30/3): No more meetings

The Dutch national authorities banned on all gatherings with more than three persons until 1 June 2020. The local government will close areas where and when necessary if people do not comply with the rules. Fines can also be handed out.

The Batavierenrace and Create Tomorrow (postponed to 7-8 October) are cancelled, as goes for Kingsnight and Green Vibrations.

UPDATE (1/4) No gatherings, please obey the rules

Any gathering is now prohibited. Please obey the rules!

We expressly call on you not to come to campus when this is not necessary. In case you need to access the premises for an urgent situation, you - together with your supervisor - can make arrangements with the faculty’s Safety, Health and Environment officer (for service departments the head of department, for BMS the portfolio holder operational management). More details on the procedure.

Personal Health

UPDATE (26/3): I am very concerned about the Corona virus.

Of course, it is understandable that you are concerned about the Corona virus. However, if you find yourself feeling very tense or anxious, it is good to do something about it. Sharing your concerns with others, by phone or via Social media, can help you. When you share your concerns with others, this often gives relieve. Then you can also look for solutions together, on how worry less. It is also good to limit the time you follow all news about Corona closely, every day. Agree with yourself that you watch the news once a day, for example, and visit a regular news website once a day. Try not only to focus on the Corona virus and its limitations, but also look at your options. Maybe it is possible for you to pick up a new hobby or learn a language online. Finally, it can also help you to look at what you can do at the moment. Look at the tips / advice given by RIVM for this.

We recommend to watch this video with tips.

UPDATE (24/3): I suffer from psychological complaints. What if these get worse in these circumstances?

In general, it is advisable for people with psychological complaints to stick to your normal structure as much as possible. Your normal life will probably be very different these days. Therefore, try to get up and go to bed at the same times, breakfast / lunch / dinner around the same times, and take breaks at the same times as before. In addition, stay in touch (online) with people and think whether you can discuss this with some of the people in your circle. Staying physically healthy is also important now; get enough sleep, healthy eating, but also enough exercise. The latter can now be difficult, but there are enough creative solutions in the form of online workouts to keep moving enough.

In addition; if you are already in treatment somewhere; discuss your concerns with your practitioner and see how you can come to a plan of action together. It is possible that a number of psychologists or institutions are temporarily closed, see if it is possible to schedule an online appointment. Most practitioners will be available by email, phone, or other means. If you don't have a practitioner; then know that it is possible to get psychological help. You have a number of options for this. You can contact Student Affairs Coaching & Counseling, or you can contact your GP to be referred to Mental Health Care (GGZ).

Student Psychologists work from home through Student Affairs Coaching & Counseling and appointments are made via Skype or telephone. Our secretariat can be reached by telephone and can schedule an appointment for you.

UPDATE (1/4): Do I run a higher risk if I have other health problems, such as COPD, diabetes, etc.?

The risk of an infection with the coronavirus is the same for everyone. However, the consequences can be more serious if you have other health issues, such as:

  • Chronic respiratory or pulmonary complaints (such as COPD)
  • Chronic heart problems
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney failure
  • Reduced resistance due to medication use or illnesses.

The government advises them to avoid contact with others as much as possible, not to use public transport, to follow general hygiene measures and to stay away from people with (mild) cold complaints.

Employees with these complaints are requested to contact the company doctor if they have any questions. For example, whether they can work (at home). You can contact Arbo Unie by telephone (088 272 68 00).

For pregnant women the virus infection has the same course as in women who are not pregnant. As far as we know, there is no increased risk of miscarriage or birth defects due to infection with this virus. The complications such as high fever or pneumonia can be more severe on pregnant woman. If you have any concerns, please contact the company doctor or your midwife's practice.

UPDATE (24/3): I don't have any complaints, but I should avoid social contact, what exactly should I do?

Even if you have no complaints, you must help to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and protect vulnerable persons (elderly and persons with reduced resistance) by social distancing.

Stay home as much as possible. Leave the house only to go to work if you cannot work at home, to buy groceries or to take care of others. You can go out to get some fresh air, but do not do so in groups. Always keep a good distance from other people (at least 1.5 metres) and avoid all social activities and groups of people. At home: limit the number of visitors to 3 and keep sufficient distance (1.5m) from each other.

As before, if you have a cough or a cold: stay home. If someone in your household develops a fever, all the members of the household should stay home. This does not apply to key workers in crucial sectors and critical processes, unless they themselves get sick.

UPDATE (16/3): When do you have a chance of catching the new coronavirus?

As well globally as in the Netherlands, there is an opportunity to catch the new coronavirus. Even if you don't live in a high-risk area: everyone in the Netherlands stays at home if you have mild complaints such as nasal colds, coughs, sore throats or fever (below 38⁰ Celsius). In case of mild complaints, you do not have to contact your family doctor. Please avoid social contact. 

If your symptoms increase (more than 38⁰ fever and coughing or difficulty breathing) or if you need medical help, contact your general practitioner by telephone.

Check the RIVM site for the latest information about high-risk areas or search for the relevant areas by country.

UPDATE (1/4): I think I am infected with the coronavirus, what should I do now?

If you have a fever and/or respiratory complaints (such as coughing or shortness of breath) and/or you have cold symptoms (cough or lung complaints), please stay at home and make sure you have as little contact with others as possible. Contact the general practitioner (GP) if your symptoms worsen and discuss the circumstances, for further action.

Employees and students who have already been registered with a general practitioner can contact their own general practitioner directly by email or telephone;

  • Currently, the UT General Practitioners Office only carries out emergency and follow-up appointments.Do you have any corona-related questions or do you think you are infected? Please contact the national information number: 0800-1351 (daily from 8:00 – 22:00h).
  • Do you live in Enschede but do not have a general practitioner yet, but you would like to speak with a docter? Then contact the Stichting Dagwaarneming Enschede, by telephone on 0900-4313333.
  • Do you live outside of Enschede but do not have a general practitioner yet? Then contact the nearest general practitioner by email or telephone. In all cases, it is advisable to ensure that you are registered with a general medical practice.

If you get mild health complaints such as coughing, sore throat, nasal colds or fever below 38⁰ Celsius you will stay at home. Take good care of yourself and make sure you don't infect others. Avoid social contact. You don't have to call the general practitioner.

If you are unable to work (at home) because of this, you can report this via the standard sick leave procedure. If you are a student, please report your illness to the faculty if you are unable to follow your online education (as soon as this is offered).

UPDATE (24/3): My roommate has health complaints, what should I do?

Does your roommate have a fever, stay at home. As long as you don't have any complaints, and your roommate does not have fever, you don't have to stay at home.  If you get mild health complaints such as coughing, sore throat, nasal colds or fever below 38⁰ Celsius you will stay at home. Take good care of yourself and make sure you don't infect others. Avoid social contact. You don't have to call the general practitioner.

If your symptoms increase, like more than 38⁰ fever and coughing or difficulty breathing, or if you need medical help, contact your general practitioner by phone.

UPDATE (16/3): I have health complaints, can I come to the UT?

We follow guideline from the Dutch national government on encouraging working from home as much as possible. This goes for all UT staff, both scientific and support staff. There is no clear generic answer to when your attendance is needed. It is important to make agreements with your head of department/supervisor and your colleagues, at the level of the department, group or project. 

If you get mild health complaints such as coughing, sore throat, nasal colds or fever below 38⁰ Celsius you will stay at home. Take good care of yourself and make sure you don't infect others. Avoid social contact. You don't have to call the general practitioner.

If your symptoms increase, like more than 38⁰ fever and coughing or difficulty breathing, or if you need medical help, contact your general practitioner by phone.

UPDATE (16/3): Can I still go to the company doctor on campus?

Employees don't come to the Arbo Unie location on the UT campus, instead all appointments will be handled by telephone.

Need medical support?

For visits abroad, the UT records the regions to which students and staff have travelled, as much as possible. Also, if students or staff have travelled to areas in which a code yellow, orange or red applies, and if they experience possible symptoms of the coronavirus, this will be recorded by the UT. Students and staff must have the opportunity to contact a general practitioner or company doctor at all times.

The University of Twente has access to various medical facilities on campus, including emergency assistance, a general practitioner, dentist and physiotherapist. A number of rules apply to the use of medical services in the Netherlands:

  • The use of specialist doctors at the hospital requires a referral from a general practitioner. This applies, for example, to surgery, ophthalmologists, gynaecologists and orthopaedic surgeons. It is therefore important to register with a general practitioner as soon as possible. This can often be done quickly and easily via the website.
  • A lot of medication requires a prescription from a general practitioner. In this case as well, you must be registered with a general practitioner.
  • If you use a health insurance policy, it is important to check whether it covers your costs in both the Netherlands and abroad. In this way, you can prevent unexpected costs.

Prevention

What can I do to reduce my risk of catching coronavirus?

There are general measures you can take to reduce your risk of carrying or catching the virus. They also apply to other forms of cold or flu. It is always important to follow these basic hygiene rules wherever you are:

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap;
    • for (preparing food;
    • after a visit to the toilet;
    • after coughing, sneezing in the hands;
    • after blowing the nose;
  • Preferably wash your hands with running water and liquid soap. You use hand alcohol or alcohol gel if there is no possibility to wash your hands and your hands are not visibly or not perceptibly dirty. So for example if you have snorted your nose and you don't have water, soap and a towel nearby.
  • Do not touch your face with your hands as much as possible;
  • If you have to cough or sneeze, do it on the inside of your elbow;
  • Use paper tissues and throw them away immediately after use.
  • Don’t shake hands

This short video explains how to wash your hands properly.

UPDATE (30/3): What is the University of Twente doing to prevent the coronavirus from spreading?

All employees, students and visitors are urgently advised to work and study from home and carry out good hygiene measures and follow the general guidelines of the government.

UPDATE (14/3): Do I have to use face masks to protect myself against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)?

The University follows the guidelines of the RIVM. In the Netherlands, we only recommend face masks for medical personnel.

UPDATE (31/3): How should I prepare for off campus activities (such as grocery shopping)?

The national authorities have strict rules and limitations put in place. The timing of implementing those limitation are dependent on the way this outbreak causes a steep curve or not, and how we abide by those rules limitations. We are in this together and thus the stay-at-home and only go out for essentials like groceries, applies. Keep a distance of 6 feet or 1,5 meters from each other in any case.

UPDATE (31/3): Why do shops do not handle protective gear?

Shops have clear instructions on how to cooperate regarding pre-emptive measure in handling the outbreak of COVID-19. Most shops have either closed their doors, due to not being able implement measures (this is monitoring and assessed by our police department) or shopkeepers have implemented and monitor stricter measures, regarding distance between customers, sanitizing of baskets and carts, handling disposable gloves, placing screens at the cash registry, or have a limitation of number of customer at the same time in the shops.

UPDATE (31/3): Why am I not screened for COVID-19 once entering or leaving campus?

A person in the Netherlands is tested upon showing symptoms of COVID-19. This is at the discretion of the GGD (national health authority). If you are showing symptoms you are asked to contact your GP by phone.

Education

students

UPDATE (24/3): Is the Coronavirus a justifiable reason for my (upcoming) study delay?

Because of the Corona virus, some students struggle with a (upcoming) study delay. Questions have been raised, for example: can the Corona be classified as a justifiable reason for (upcoming) study delay, with regards to the obligation of having sufficient study progress)? Or: can all residence permits be extended? Nationwide answers are necessary, before the UT can decide on these questions. If you have any questions, please contact your study advisor. If you want to talk to a student counselor about other study-related questions, UT regulations for personal matters, you can make an appointment (skype) through the secretariat of SACC (+31 53 489 2035).

UPDATE (20/3): What is the view point of the UT concerning the Binding Study Progress Evaluation (BSA)?

The University of Twente deals with the Binding student progress evaluation (BSA) in line with the request made by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. In the study year 2019-2020, no negative binding study advice will be issued to first year students.

For first year students who do not meet the requirements of the BSA per 31 August 2020, the final student progress evaluation will be postponed. This postponed evaluation means the student will have the opportunity to fulfil the requirements for the BSA in the study year 2020-2021. Furthermore, they will receive an additional, non-binding preliminary student progress evaluation. Also, they will be invited by their study advisor to discuss whether continuing the educational programme is preferable.

The UT will do everything within its power to smoothly proceed education and examination online. We do expect to offer all students a programme in which they are able to complete the third and fourth quartile within this study year.

UPDATE (25/3): What does education look like in the 3rd and 4th quarter?

We have decided to extend the period for (solely) providing online education from 6 April to 1 June. By extending the term for offering only online education, we strive to provide more clarity for both staff and students. In addition, we can now invest more attention for the quality of our online education. In case government regulations would change before 1 June, we will assess at that time what activities would still be feasible at the campus. We are also investigating what options we have for activities for which there is no online alternative available, such as some practical assignments and exams. Possibly part of those activities will have to take place during the summer period. 

Students will be informed via Canvas or email on how and when the education will proceed. Every study programme has its tailor-made approach. This means no activities will be held for which attendance on campus is required. A solid internet connection should be sufficient.

We have not yet decided how the educational activities in the remaining part of the fourth quartile (as from of 1 June) will proceed. We are striving to offer you more information on that at short notice. For this, we are also held to guidelines and agreements on a national level. For some study programmes, this may lead to the requirement of attending activities on campus. Hopefully, we can provide more information soonest.

UPDATE (31/3): How may written tests be conducted when the university is closed (remote assessment)?

This document describes how the University of Twente deals with written tests during the corona crisis. The starting point is that we offer a working method that comes closest to complete reliability of testing. We have given the programme a number of advices on how to achieve this. It's up to them whether they follow this advice. When this happens, the decision as to whether the test is reliable lies with the lecturers instead of the Examinations Committee.

UPDATE (25/3): How will tests be taken until 1 June?

A working group has been set up at UT level to look into technical possibilities and regulations. As soon as we know more, we will inform you. This means no activities will be held for which attendance on campus is required until 1 June. A solid internet connection should be sufficient.

UPDATE (19/3): When are the new tests scheduled which were cancelled?

In order to limit the disruption of our education, it has been decided not to adjust the teaching timetable now. This will end the third quartile as pre-Corona had planned. We are now working hard to see if, how and when the cancelled tests will be taken. As soon as we know more about this, we will come back to it.

UPDATE (19/3): How is communication going towards employees, lecturers and students?

If there is news, staff and students receive a corporate newsletter. There is also decentralized communication. For students Canvas is also used and communicated via Student Union. E-mail is the most important source of information at this moment, so please keep a close eye on it.

UPDATE (20/3) I am a sophomore and I have a postponed advice.

For second year students with a postponed advice customization is necessary. You will receive more information about this later.

UPDATE (19/3): What is the effect on my Bsc or MSc final assignment?

This has our attention and we will come back to it.

UPDATE (1/4):Financial situation of students

For some students, the current situation leads to financial difficulties. There are for instance cases where students cannot continue their part-time job. DUO may offer support that could provide help in case of unexpected loss of income. If you are or getting in financial distress, please contact your study advisor. They can help you on your way to check whether you are eligible for a (financial) compensation.

UPDATE (20/3): Support for mental health

We understand that the current situation may lead to additional stress, as it has a big impact on our daily lives. In case you would like any support with mental issues, you can contact Student Affairs Coaching & Counselling. You can reach them by phone, +31 53 489 2035. If necessary, they can guide you to appropriate support.

Teaching staff

UPDATE (25/3): What will education look like in until 1 June?

The first week of the third quarter has been cancelled. Education will be offered digitally until 1 June.

UPDATE (20/3): How will tests be taken in the coming period?

At the UT level, there is a working group on online testing that examines the technical possibilities and regulations and works on a basis that teachers can make use of. We will keep you informed about this. 

UPDATE (19/3): When are the new tests scheduled to be cancelled?

In order to limit the disruption of our education, it has been decided not to adjust the teaching timetable now. This will end the third quartile as pre-Corona had planned. We are now working hard to see if, how and when the cancelled tests will be overtaken. As soon as we know more about this, we will come back to it.

UPDATE (26/3): Where can I find information about support that TELT offers?

To support teaching staff with their online teaching activities, the TELT team has created a dedicated webpage with recommended tools for online teaching. You can also contact them via telt@utwente.nl

UPDATE (19/3): How does the UT communicate with employees, lecturers and students?

If there is news, staff and students receive a corporate newsletter. There is also decentralized communication. For students Canvas is also used and communication via Student Union. E-mail is the most important source of information at this moment, so keep a close eye on it.

UPDATE 1(9/3): Are final attainment levels still achievable in the transition to online education?

The examination committee will decide whether the final attainment levels are feasible. A central working group has been set up to look into this and advise the examination committees. We advise you to continue with the normal activities as much as possible and to use TELT, for example, to look for alternative possibilities for education and testing.

UPDATE (19/3): Are the examination committees affiliated?

This has our attention.

UPDATE (19/3): How do I get lecture material from the students?

Advice is to not only stream lecture material, but also make download files of it.

Limited availability of services

UPDATE (1/4): Which buildings and services will be closed?

The UT buildings will remain closed as they are now until at least 28 April. Employees and students will continue to work from home. Because of manageability and safety, current authorisations on your employee card to access the buildings will be withdrawn. In case you need to access the premises for an urgent situation, you - together with your supervisor - can make arrangements with the faculty’s Safety, Health and Environment officer (for service departments the head of department, for BMS the portfolio holder operational management). More details on the procedure.

There are a few exceptions on the above: our colleagues from the TechMed Centre are currently helping out their colleagues in healthcare with the additional demand that is presently coming their way. Also, in the NanoLab, limited research activities will take place that, because of their urgent character, have to proceed. In consultation with the faculties, careful consideration is currently taking place regarding any exception. Safety is an essential precondition for this.

  • Research activities in the lab will be reduced to an absolute minimum. This will be done in close consultation between facility supervisors and users. As the use of several labs require strict safety measures, proceeding with research activities is not possible in all cases.
  • The Sports Centre will be closed, as the physiotherapy practice has also decided to postpone all activities. Online sports are offered daily.
  • The service desks of various internal services are open for business as usual. You may contact them by phone or email, unless stated otherwise on their products and services page. Also the U Park hotel will be closed until 6 April.
  • The mailroom is open until 11:00. We do ask you to order as little as possible.

Outdoor sports facilities: we noted extensive use of our outdoor sports facilities. Unfortunately, a lot of users did not follow the safety and health measures, despite clear warning signs on site. Therefore, we had to decide to close the outdoor gym. Use of the UTrack is only permitted upon presenting your campus card!

Through the social media channels, mailing list and website of the Sports Centre new workouts, live sessions and options to get a fitness consult. Check the latest news item to see a lot of options for sports at home.

The Coop at the Boulevard is open.

Secure and optimal working from home

UPDATE (26/3): Security Updates Windows 10 workplace (UT managed)

LISA is constantly working to keep our digital environment safe. Even now that everyone works from home, it is essential that workplaces are provided with the latest security updates. LISA therefore asks everyone the following:

  • Connect to the UT network at least once a week via a VPN connection, so that security updates are continued. As long as the updates are running you will see that at the bottom of your screen. Pay attention to whether a restart of your PC is requested.
  • Shut down your PC completely at least once a week, so that any security updates from Microsoft can be retrieved and updated.
  • In addition, check at least once a month whether the Windows updates are updated. How to do that can be found here

If you do not work with a UT managed workplace, make sure that it is regularly updated.

For more information about how to connect to a VPN and how to check security updates, see also the FAQ about working from home

Cybersecurity

Covid-19 turns out to be a great opportunity for cybercriminals to attack victims. We kindly ask everybody to be careful with messages and report about them. The university uses email as a primary means for central communication. Important news items will also be published on the public website. If you receive a message claiming to contain coronavirus information from the university and you are asked to log in, that is a phishing attempt. Please report this immediately to CERT-UT, the computer security team of the university, at the address cert@utwente.nl.

Working remotely in a safe way
  • Do not use public Wi-Fi to access your work documents, applications and files.
  • Make sure your computer, applications and anti-virus software are up-to-date.
  • Use a secure connection, like the Virtual Private Network (VPN) of the University of Twente, for your work.
Virtual Private Network (VPN)

As of 17 March 2020, there should be sufficient capacity to host all employees to work from home using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection. An upgrade will take place to ensure this will work smoothly.

You might encounter difficulties with using video and audio conversations (like Skype for Business or Microsoft Teams) while using VPN. The sound may be of bad quality or video stuttering. It is recommended to disconnect from the VPN before attending an online conversation.

Only use VPN when necessary

Please note that a VPN connection is not needed for:

  • Network connection to UT applications, as they are always encrypted;
  • Access to the M: and P: drives. You can access them through webdrive. Read the manual for more information;
  • Using Microsoft Office applications. They fully function without a VPN connection;
  • Our online library services, as we use EZproxy for granting access.

A VPN connection is necessary for various HR/FIN services.

Staff information

UPDATE (3/4): How do I manage my H2020/NWO/ERC project during the COVID-19 outbreak?

When you are currently managing a H2020/NWO/ERC project, the grants office advise to do risk inventory on your project to help you decide which actions to take. On the website you can find the steps that you can follow. If you have additional questions, or if you want to talk to a Project Manager, feel free to contact Grants Office or look at the FAQ (keyword: COVID-19) of the European Commission.

UPDATE (3/4): Where can I get information on changes in research funding due to Corona?

The European Commission set up the European Research Area (ERA) Corona Platform, with the latest H2020 calls deadlines updates, a new Horizon 2020 FAQs and other useful links (like Corona-related projects and research). Applicants who started a submission environment in the Funding & tenders Portal can expect automatic notifications.

The ERC has announced its specific business continuity measures. For running applications, the ERC does not expect disruptions. So far, there is no note from the ERC on evaluation step 2 for ERC Starting and Consolidator Grants (i.e. interview in Brussels). For upcoming calls, deadlines are maintained.

The Dutch funding organizations are flexible in their approach and most calls are delayed. For more information check the ZonMw website or NWO website for up-to-date information on the latest measures.

UPDATE (3/4): Are there funding opportunities to do research on corona and help?

Yes. Both ZonMw and NWO start funding opportunities to overcome the COVID-19 outbreak and research on corona. NWO makes a reservation of 13 million to support research on corona. NWO will, together with ZonMW, have 20 million for research on corona. How it will be used is still to be announced. Also NWO is going to provide 1.5 million for urgent research towards the COVID-19 virus, for which now total 6.5 million is committed from various sources. Next to this NWO will also reserve 1.5 million euros for non-medical research. More information from NWO is expected soon.

ZonMw also have a StartImpuls (up to 7500) or Projectimpuls (7,5 to 10.000 euro)  which is reserved  for companies or organizations to come up with creative solutions for people affected by corona. On the website you find more information. Please be aware this is only available in Dutch.

UPDATE (17/3): Research and other activities

Research activities in the lab will be reduced to an absolute minimum. This will be done in close consultation between facility supervisors and users. As the use of several labs require strict safety measures, proceeding with research activities is not possible in all cases.

All buildings on campus will be closed and are only accessible by using your employee card when authorised to enter the buildings outside office hours. The same rules as always apply, but also in this case, we urge you not to come to campus when not strictly necessary.

UPDATE (1/4): Work from home as much as possible

An extension of the period of working from home requires more attention to providing a safe, healthy and comfortable place to work. For some employees, the situation may imply that they have to discuss with their supervisor how they can continue their activities for this new period. At short notice, we hope to offer some additional support for working from home. More information on this will be published on the employee portal. The existing temporary conditions for leave and absence have been extended until 28 April.

At the moment, the barrier for interpersonal attention is perhaps somewhat higher than usual, because we do not physically meet. At the same time, it is maybe even more important that we look after each other and ourselves. Discuss issues if you feel the need to do so. Students with problems can contact their study advisor, who can support them in various ways.

In the Spiegel building, a section has been opened for students to work, in case they do not have any opportunity to study at home or in their student room. We find it of utmost importance that you can work at home in safe and healthy conditions. For that, we have written an instruction form that may help you to arrange your digital working space from home.

UPDATE (20/3): What can be done in case I have to be at home to take care of children or partner?

It is important that the care for your child(ren) and partner is been taken care off adequately. The Dutch national authorities have pointed out so-called ‘crucial professions’. Employees with a crucial profession have the opportunity to make use of child care services if they cannot arrange childcare in any other way. This also includes externals working for the university in a crucial profession.

In the coming period, the vast majority of UT staff will be working from home. Sometimes, this has to be combined with care for your partner or children. The HR department has set up guidelines which will help you to organize your work and your private life in a good way. Visit https://www.utwente.nl/en/hr/Coronavirus/ for more information.

Student information

UPDATE (17/3): I am on an internship, can this continue?

There are students currently on an internship with other organisations. They may follow the guidelines issued by the organisation they are currently on an internship at. Should this lead to complications, please contact your internship supervisor at the UT. Also if you (have to) stop your internship temporarily, please contact your UT supervisor.

UPDATE (17/3): Extended opening hours Student Services Contact Centre

We have decided to extend the opening hours of the Student Services Contact Centre. Students can phone (+31 53-489 2124) the Centre in case they have any questions or worries that they would like to discuss or receive advice on. We would like you, as an employee, to be alert on any signals of students needing help or assistance, and guide them to the right support. The Contact Centre can be reached from 8.00 to 20.00 hours.

VISA

UPDATE (14/3): Will the visa process be delayed due to the Corona virus?

This is likely. We are dependent on the authorities; opening hours of the Dutch embassies and the availability of airline travel are expected to be limited. We will keep you informed of any new developments.

UPDATE (14/3): Will visa deadlines be extended?

At this moment there is no change in the deadline of 1 July 2020.

UPDATE (14/3): If my residence permit is cancelled and I cannot leave due to Corona, can I stay longer?

The IND (Dutch immigration service) has informed us that they will look at each individual case. If you cannot travel as planned, please contact studentservices@utwente.nl immediately and we will contact the IND on your behalf.

Choice of study program

UPDATE (26/3): As the Open Days in March have been cancelled, how can I orientate on a bachelor's or master's programme?

Luckily, there are more possibilities to explore which bachelor or master is right for you. All the tips are collected online for you. For example, schedule a Skype appointment with a study advisor!

Admission

UPDATE (14/3): My finals (high school/Bachelor) have been postponed, what does this mean for me?

Unfortunately, UT is bound by Dutch law to be in possession of the documents before 1 September. Therefore, you will have to supply the documents before 1 September. You won’t be able to start your study programme at UT without presenting your degree.

UPDATE (20/3): I can’t request the needed documents because the high school/university/translation bureau/notary office is closed.

The deadline for prospective students changed, from 1 May to 1 June. We apply various deadlines in various situations for various study programmes. The change of deadline only applies for Dutch students applying for a bachelor programme. For international students and master students, no changes are yet foreseen. We hope to provide you an overview of all applicable deadlines soon.

UPDATE (20/3): I can’t take my Enlish test (IELTS/TOEFL).

The deadline for prospective students changed, from 1 May to 1 June. We apply various deadlines in various situations for various study programmes. The change of deadline only applies for Dutch students applying for a bachelor programme. For international students and master students, no changes are yet foreseen. We hope to provide you an overview of all applicable deadlines soon.

UPDATE (20/3): My embassy is closed and therefore I cannot arrange my visa. How do I deal with this in relation to the deadlines?

The deadline for prospective students changed, from 1 May to 1 June. We apply various deadlines in various situations for various study programmes. The change of deadline only applies for Dutch students applying for a bachelor programme. For international students and master students, no changes are yet foreseen. We hope to provide you an overview of all applicable deadlines soon.

Current Students

UPDATE (30/3): Can I graduate and will I receive a diploma?

This will be decided in consultation with your education.

Due to practical limitations, you may receive your diploma a little later. You can, however, receive  a certificate of graduation via BOZ with which you can, for example, apply for a follow-up study programme. For a follow-up programme at the UT you don’t need such a certificate.

If applicable, you can deregister from the UT after graduation via Studielink. Do this on time (in the month of your graduation) and you then will be deregistered from the first of the following month.

UPDATE (20/3): I am a Bachelor/Master student and I would like to go home. What are my options?

You have two options:

  1. You stay enrolled
    We plan to offer online/distance education as of 23 March. In order to participate, you need to be enrolled at UT even if you will follow the lectures from your home country. The payment of your tuition fee will continue. You can also keep using the facilities of UT if they are available.
    1. What will happen with my BSA (binding recommendation)?
      The University of Twente deals with the Binding student progress evaluation (BSA) in line with the request made by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. In the study year 2019-2020, no negative binding study advice will be issued to first year students.

      For first year students who do not meet the requirements of the BSA per 31 August 2020, the final student progress evaluation will be postponed. This postponed evaluation means the student will have the opportunity to fulfil the requirements for the BSA in the study year 2020-2021. Furthermore, they will receive an additional, non-binding preliminary student progress evaluation. Also, they will be invited by their study advisor to discuss whether continuing the educational programme is preferable.

      The UT will do everything within its power to smoothly proceed education and examination online. We do expect to offer all students a programme in which they are able to complete the third and fourth quartile within this study year.

    2. What if I have a residence permit through UT?
      If you have a residence permit through UT, it will not be cancelled. The MOMI will remain in effect, meaning that you will need to obtain a total of 30 EC in the academic year 2019 – 2020. This is a condition set by the IND.
    3. What about housing (Non-EER students)|?
      There are no changes for housing, your contract will continue. You can of course terminate the contract and leave your current accommodation if you want.

  2. You de-enrol
    We understand that you are worried about staying at the UT. We are committed to keeping our UT community safe and healthy and take all measures we can to accomplish this.
    Therefore, we ask you to consider this decision carefully. Consider the risks and possible restrictions of travel, as well as your home situation. Also, keep in mind that the UT is preparing to offer you online education. Your study programme will inform you about what this means for you. All students will be informed through their faculty this week. If you are an exchange student and your host institution has requested your return with a directive, you should comply. We are sorry to see you go, but we understand the decision. We would like to hear from you before you leave via calamity-offcampus@utwente.nl. If you want to discontinue your studies at this moment, and re-enrol later this year, please be aware that this cannot be done without consequences. We advise you to consult your study advisor about postponing your studies before you make the final decision to deregister. If you want to deregister, do so in Studielink. You will receive your tuition fee over the excess amount paid back. After deregistering, you can register for the next academic year via Studielink.
    1. What will happen with my residence permit?
      If you have a residence permit though UT, we will cancel it with the IND. The MOMI requirements will no longer be applicable when you have de-enrolled. You will then not be required to obtain 30 EC. If you apply for the next academic year, you can start the procedure for the application of a residence permit again.
    2. I have signed a one-year contract. What happens if I de-enroll?
      If you de-enroll and return for the next academic year, you will no longer be eligible for the furnished accommodation in Roomspot (special offer UT).

Exchange students

UPDATE (14/3): My exchange programme has ended and I would like to go back home, but I’m not allowed into the country.

Please contact your faculty/study programme for substantive matters. For general questions: calamity-offcampus@utwente.nl

UPDATE (17/3): I study at the UT, but I want to go home.

Before you decide to leave the UT, we'd like to point out the following. In the current (third) quartile, all educational activities will take place online. Students will be able to participate from anywhere in the world, as long as they have access to online facilities.

There is no certainty for the period after the current quartile. It may well be that students are required to attend activities on campus. This will be decided later. 

If you want to go home, please inform your study adviser and de-enrol in Studielink or de-enrol through Student Services (studentservices@utwente.nl) if you are an Exchange student. For general questions: calamity-offcampus@utwente.nl

Student housing

UPDATE (14.3): I live in one of the student houses on campus, do I have to stay there, or can I go home?

Yes, you are allowed to go home.

Events

UPDATE (26/3): Will there be an alternative for the Open Days?

Luckily, there are more possibilities to explore which bachelor or master is right for you. All the tips are collected online for you. For example, schedule a Skype appointment with a study advisor!

Prospective students who registered for the Open Days will be informed as soon as possible. 

UPDATE (24/3): May I use the sports centre as usual?

No, all indoor and outdoor activities in and around the sports centre are cancelled. You can keep fit with the Online Offer of the Sports Centre. More information on the Sports Centre website.

UPDATE (24/3): I have registered for a conference/event at UT. Will this continue?

All events are cancelled until at least 1 June 2020.

The organisation of the event will contact you in case of cancellation.

UPDATE (24/3): I am a staff member or student of UT, and I have registered for a conference/event in the Netherlands and/ or abroad. Can I still go?

All events that take place in the Netherlands will be cancelled. This limitation is valid until at least 1 june 2020.

It is not allowed to travel for the UT until further notice.

UPDATE (24/3): For the University of Twente we organise an event. Can this still take place?

All events have been cancelled until at least 1 June 2020.

UPDATE (17/3: )Can scheduled PhD graduations continue, and how about persons who cannot travel?

Yes, scheduled PhD defenses can continue, but without any audience and in a fully digital manner. When a PhD defense is fully digital, all participants (including the PhD candidate, the chair, committee members and the promotors) connect through a video connection, they do not come to Twente University but join through their laptops or computers. There will be no public at all.

1.       The Doctorate Board gives the PhD candidates the choice to either (a) continue with the PhD graduation ceremony but in a fully digital way, or (b) postpone the ceremony and reschedule as soon as possible after we are free of COVID-19 measures.

2.       The Doctorate Board also decided to temporarily lift the requirement for signatures of committee members on the PhD diploma. These measures will be valid until recalled by the rector.

PhD candidates who are scheduled to defend the coming weeks will be individually contacted by the dean TGS (a.need@utwente.nl).

Travel

UPDATE (17/3): Can I travel?

Starting today (17 March) until further notice, international business trip on behalf of the UT are no longer allowed. Currently, there is a lot of uncertainty on whether flights or other travel arrangements will take place. If you are abroad, we ask you to return as soon as possible. If you are abroad and you feel you are not able to return safely, get in contact with the HR advisor of your faculty or service department.

UPDATE (24/3): I (student or employee) am abroad, what to do?

Students and employees abroad who want to return to the Netherlands are urgently requested to register on SpecialeBijstandBuitenland.nl.

The national government, together with the Dutch travel industry, repatriates stranded travelers.

A personal contribution is collected afterwards for the return journey. Within Europe it is € 300 and outside Europe € 900 per person. Travelers must agree to this during the registration process.

Detailed information can be found on the website of the National Government. For questions you can call: +31247247247

UPDATE (17/3): I am an international student and want to go home

We receive questions from students who have the desire to return to their country of origin. We understand their wish to be close to family now, but we are not in the position to advise in this matter. It is up to the student to decide.

In the current (third) quartile, all educational activities will take place online. Students will be able to participate from anywhere in the world, as long as they have access to online facilities.

There is no certainty for the period after the current quartile. It may well be that students are required to attend activities on campus. This will be decided later. 

Do I have to worry about contact with students, housemates or employees who have just returned from countries in which the coronavirus is widespread?

We ask students, housemates and employees who return from high-risk countries indicated by RIVM (see the relevant countries), to keep a close eye on whether they experience any symptoms of coronavirus (fever and/ or respiratory complaints). If they experience symptoms, we urgently recommend they stay at home for 14 days and take appropriate hygiene measures to prevent the contamination of people around them.

Unexpected costs and declarations

What if the coronavirus or measurements taken lead to unexpected additional costs?

The coronavirus and precautions taken may lead to unexpected and or additional costs. The University of Twente's Executive Board is currently exploring possibilities for compensation. We will keep you updated on this matter.

Where can I find all mail that have been sent to students and staff?

The mails are available here.
If you are not on the campus network you will be asked to log in. 

Where can I go if I have any questions?

If you have any medical related questions, contact the general practitioner (GP) by telephone. Students who have questions about the coronavirus and the consequences can contact Student Services. You can also contact the Calamity Services – Abroad, should you have any questions. The phone number of the Contact Centre is 053-489 2124 (available from 8.00h to 20.00h). Twente Pathway students can contact Student.Support@twentepathway.nl.

Employees who have questions can contact the HR Advisor from the relevant faculty or unit. If you have UT-related questions after reading the information, you may contact the central information desk via the contact form or by sending an email to info@utwente.nl.