Governing Board Circular No. 2/2021

The following is an English translation of excerpts from the original Hungarian text of:

Governing Board Circular No. 2/2021

On additional rules at Széchenyi István University related to the emergency situation in Spring semester of academic year 2020/21

In connection with epidemiological control, the Governing Board of Széchenyi István University orders the following measures. The scope of this circular extends to all full-time employees and contract staff of the University as well as students. Supplementing the Governing Board Circular No. 4/2020, this circular contains additional regulations arising from the epidemiological situation applicable during academic year 2020/2021.

 1. Introduction

On 11 November 2020, Act CIX. of 2020, on the control of the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, entered into force. Furthermore, on 11 November 2020, there also entered into force Government Decree No. 484/2020 (XI. 10.) on the second phase of protection measures to be applied during the emergency.

The texts of the above two legal acts can be read on https://magyarkozlony.hu/.

Based on the above legislation, on 11 November 2020, the Governing Board of Széchenyi István University issued circular no. 4/2020 supplemented by this circular.

The general, current procedures are still available on the official website of the National Centre for Public Health at http://www.nnk.gov.hu/. More information can be found on https://koronavirus.gov.hu/.

We draw your attention to the increased observance of hygiene and other prevention regulations!

2. Provisions related to specific areas of operation

2.1. Education

From 11 November 2020, full-time and correspondence education was switched to distance education. In the Spring semester of academic year 2020/2021, all programmes at Széchenyi István University (except for Music programmes), will begin with distance learning. If the epidemiological situation allows, education can return to the original schedule, the conditions and course of which will be regulated in a further circular by the University management.

For newly enrolled students, enrolment is carried out online, and the enrolment form and training agreement (where applicable) will be sent to students by registered mail, with an original signed copy required to be returned by the specified deadline.

In the spring semester of academic year 2020/2021, the presence of students on the University's teaching premises is allowed for the following activities:

  • consultations on theses, diploma theses or doctoral dissertations or laboratory work
  • research project discussion or lab work
  • participation in a final exam
  • participation in doctoral examination, complex examination, workshop discussion and doctoral defence
  • participation in an internship

In the case of student presence, the general rules regarding meetings and hygiene are applicable.

Compulsory internships of more than 6 weeks in progress at an external internship provider, as well as dual training, can be completed if the place of the internship accepts the student.

The final exams must be held in the presence of the student. The remote presence of some members of the committee is allowed, provided that the chairman of the committee and the secretary of the minutes are present in person. The current academic schedule is available on the University's website.

It is permitted to hold doctoral examinations, the complex exam and the preliminary professional discussion (workshop discussion) online. In the case of attendance in person, the above doctoral events may be organized only in accordance with the general rules for meetings and hygiene, including taking into consideration limits on numbers attending, as set out in point 2.8.

Public defence of doctoral theses must be carried out in the presence of the candidate. The remote presence of committee members is permitted, provided that the chairman of the committee (in the event of his being prevented, a member of the committee) and the secretary are present in person. In the case of an online defence of a thesis, the requirements of the government decree on doctoral studies regarding the composition of the voting panel, the ensuring of publicity and the secrecy of the panel's vote must also be observed.

The rules for international students arriving in the spring semester of the 2020/21 academic year are set out in Annexe 2 to this circular.

2.2. Supplement to academic regulations

Exemption from the pre-study requirement: In the case of subjects where it is not possible to teach them in distance learning mode (typically teaching practice and other vocational practice) and it is impossible to complete them in the autumn semester of academic year 2020/21 (hereafter: subjects that cannot be completed) the competent dean may make a proposal for the spring semester of academic year 2020/21 for the temporary suspension of the pre-study requirement, which is to be adopted by the Senate. The proposal can allow students to take subjects that could not be completed in the autumn semester of 2020/2021, as well as subjects based on them, exceptionally, in parallel, in the spring semester of academic year 2020/21. This relief is only available in the spring semester of academic year 2020/21. (Sections 7 and 39 (7) of the TVSZ (Academic and Examination Regulations)

Suspension of the termination of a student's legal relationship (TVSZ Section 17): In academic year 2020/21 a student's legal relationship will not be terminated if:

§ 17. (2) a) - by the end of the second active semester of his studies, s/he has not accumulated 30 credit points in undergraduate, Master's and undivided programmes, and 15 credit points in higher vocational education.

§ 17. (2) b) - for programmes lasting longer than 4 semesters, s/he did not accumulate 60 credit points by the end of the fourth active semester of his/her studies.

§ 17 (2) c) - the number of insufficient and inadequate grades in the given programme (in the case of continuous assessment, including the supplementary examination period)

  • exceeds 30 for undergraduate programmes,
  • 15 in the case of Masters programmes
  • 35 for undivided programmes
  • § 17. (2) g) - the total number of active and passive semesters equals twice the duration of the programme.
  • § 17. (2) p) - the number of passive semesters equals the number of semesters of the duration of the degree programme.
  • § 17 (2) i) - the spring semester of academic year 2019/2020 shall not be taken into account when applying § 17 (2) i).

Change of status from distance/correspondence student to regular full-time student: during the assessment of the application for change of status submitted in academic year 2020/21, the student must not be prevented from taking it if the student does not meet the following conditions:

(a) already has at least 30 credit points in his / her field at the time of application; and

b) the number of insufficient marks (in the case of continuous assessment, including the supplementary examination period) is not more than 10 (TVSZ § 27 (2))

Assessment system

Signature: the deadline for entering the signature (signed / denied) entry remains the last day of the teaching period. Exceptions are those subjects where the signature indicates the completion of the subject (eg physical education subjects, certain subjects of doctoral schools), where the deadline for entering the signature is changed to the end of the examination period (26.06.2021).

Continuous assessment, report (grades 2, 3, 5): the deadline for entering grades for subjects with such type of reports has been changed to the end of the examination period (26.06.2021).

Examinations: the recording of marks of announced and completed examinations remains the end of the third working day following the examination.

Examination premises: the examination may be held outside the University, not only on its official premises. (Section 68 (2) of the TVSZ)

Physical education requirements: the fulfilment of the compulsory physical education semesters (criterion requirement) to be admitted to the spring semester of 2020/21 will be suspended. It is also possible on the basis of an individual consultation requested from the TSK to fulfil the TS03 "endurance" requirement during the period of absence. More detailed information is available on the TSK website (https://tsk.sze.hu/fooldal).

Practical subjects, laboratory practice sessions: in the case of subjects where normal in-person education cannot be replaced by distance learning, requirements for these subjects may be completed up until 26 June 2021, if the resolution of the emergency situation allows it.

Enrolment free of charge for dissertation semester: Students who have to enrol in the spring semester solely and exclusively due to the lack of credit related to diploma planning and where the reason for the delay can be clearly justified by the epidemiological situation in the Autumn semester of academic year 2020/21 (persistent illness, impossibility of dissertation consultation with a corporate partner, data collection, etc.) and indicated in the specified online request form by the end of the second week of the teaching period of the Spring semester of academic year 2020/21, supported by the appropriate certificates, can enrol free of charge for the spring semester of academic year 2020/21, regardless of their status.

2.3. International students are still permitted to stay in the Halls of Residence. International students are those admitted by the Hungarian State (Stipendium Hungaricum and Christian Scholarship Programme), apart from applications via felvi.hu, via the admission procedure organized by SZE (on admissions.sze.hu), as well as students coming on exchange programmes (e.g. ERASMUS+ and CEEPUS) and those received under other bilateral or multilateral institutional contracts, agreements or tenders.


2.5. Details of distance education mode

Tasks for the teaching period in connection with online education:

1)   The content of the Moodle pages as prescribed in Annexe 1. of IT Circular 1/2020 are valid throughout the whole semester. It is the responsibility of the relevant department head to check and supervise the correct upload of Moodle pages.

2) Online sessions can be held at the original, scheduled times of the in-person classes. With the approval of the dean, the instructor may, in justified cases (for small and interactive courses), make participation in online classes compulsory, provided that compulsory attendance of the courses is deemed to have taken place, as in the case where a student has attended at least 10 of the 14 occasions in a semester. GoogleMeet is the primary tool for implementing online sessions and deviations from this are only permitted if a special feature of another communication programme is absolutely necessary to hold a class. It is recommended to record and disseminate the parts of online teaching sessions where there is no student activity. Please note that even when classes are held online, it is mandatory to upload the minimum required content to the Moodle pages.

3) Minimum requirements for courses if an online class is not implemented:

  • Lecture:

▪ If there exists detailed written material (textbook, note, collection of articles) available to students on the topic:

▪ Assign the material for study by giving precise page numbers in the written material.

▪ Presentations used in downloadable form.

▪ Audio or video summary of either the current part of the curriculum or the entire curriculum.

If detailed written study materials cannot be provided for students:

▪ provision of available written study materials, including highlighted parts relevant to the topic.

▪ Presentations used in downloadable form.

  • An (audio or video) recording of at least half of the theoretical length of the contact hour, which may be a presentation with voice narration or a video recording of a classroom lecture or an online lesson or an audio screenshot video.
  • Practice (calculation or problem solving):

◦ Specify the topic of the exercises.

◦ A detailed solution to a number of topic-related tasks, the discussion of which fills the duration of a contact lesson: a PDF file with a step-by-step solution or a video recording of example solutions.

  • Courses involving project work, courses with seminars and laboratory sessions:

◦   Specify whether the course can start online.

◦   If the course can be started online, provide definitions of tasks to be performed, reporting formats and deadlines and description of consultation methods and available literature.

 4) In digital education, during the semester the following activities are compulsorily required from students as a condition for the signature at the end of the semester or for continuous assessment, or as an activity giving credit for the exam:

  • Attending an online class if justified (at least 10 out of 14 attendances required).
  • Application for tasks for submission, uploading of solutions. There must be at least 2 weeks between application and upload.
  • Online oral report on results of project work.

  5) Rules for online written tests (timed assessment) are as follows:

  • The date / time of online written tests must be announced 3 weeks in advance.
  • Participation in an online written test and its completion at a given level cannot be a condition for giving a signature.
  • Participation in online written tests can be made mandatory under the following conditions:

◦ In the case of an examination subject, the result of the online written test can only count towards the examination that the student takes for the first time during the examination period.

◦ In the case of a subject with continuous assessment, the result of the online written test may determine the grade given at the end of the semester, but may not be included in the remedial examinations taken during the examination period.

◦ For each occasion of a written test, two supplementary occasions must be announced, each of which must fall on a different day. The additional sessions are open to students who through no fault of their own were unable to attend at the original time.

  • A voluntary online test may be written if the result can only improve the result of a continuous assessment subject or examination, including the result of the correction examinations.

 

The conditions listed here should be published on the Moodle page by the end of the first week of the semester and may only be modified later if justified (for example, if we switched to in-person education). To check attendance and honesty in online tests, the online examinations section of the Governing Board Circular no. 3/2020 provides the permitted framework whereby a student is expected to have a webcam to verify identity and monitor activity during the test.

Further useful technical information on digital education is provided in Annexe 1 to this circular.

2.6. Student services

All student administrative matters must be carried out online. At the Academic Registry and the University Service Centre, in-person administration is suspended, and access to the University Library and Archives is only possible with a student or employee card. University indoor sports facilities (sports halls, gyms, etc.) are not open, except to professional athletes.

2.7. Travel

In accordance with point 5 of Circular No 5/2020 of the Governing Board, which remains in force, during the epidemiological emergency, foreign travel is still not permitted and we recommend online conference participation.

2.8. Reception of guests on University premises

It is not permitted to receive guests arriving from outside Hungary. Please consider carefully before receive external guests from Hungary, and only do so if absolutely necessary. If possible, contact external partners online or by phone. If a personal consultation does take place, please try to keep the number of participants to a minimum, the maximize permitted number of participants being 10.

2.9. University campus operation procedure

Access to University buildings is only possible by presenting / using a student card, employee card or (in the case of guest lecturers) a guest card. Precise information about opening hours of the buildings is published on https://uni.sze.hu/egyetemi-epuletek-nyitvatartasa.

Face masks must be worn throughout University premises, both indoors and outdoors.

For the duration of the health emergency, paid parking will be suspended on University premises.

Still available to staff, employees and students of the University, is the Error Report form, https://help.sze.hu  to be found on uni.sze.hu, with the help of which technical errors related to the operation of the University, such as comments related to ventilation, cleaning and disinfection, can be reported.

2.10. Events

In accordance with legal regulations, Spring semester events for academic year 2020/2021 at Széchenyi István University will be delayed until after the deadline for the dissolution of such regulations and, if possible, will be held at a later date. This includes all programmes organized centrally or by organizational units, as well programmes organized by the Students’ Union and its branches. External events organized on the University premises will be cancelled or rescheduled to a later date.

4. Final provisions

In the event of a change in the epidemiological situation, we will provide information in a further circular. Please monitor university communication interfaces.

 

This circular shall enter into force on the day of its publication:

Győr, 20 January 2021

 

Dr Földesi Péter, Rector

Dr Filep Bálint, President

Dr Kovács Zsolt, Chancellor

 

Annexe 1: Useful information on digital education

Below we gather information that may be useful in online education. Many of these were already available in the Spring, but you may want to read through them again.

1) Collection of useful aids: https://informatika.sze.hu/

The most important parts of the "Main technical information about digital education and working from home" sidebar:

  • Moodle Descriptions: Login, Basic Settings, Uploading Documents, Messaging, Using Forums, Submitting Theses and Homework, Questionnaires, Tests
  • Using Google Meet
    In addition to the basic usage, the document also covers how to record lessons held through GoogleMeet.
  • Using YouTube to disseminate presentation videos.
    This document is useful for those who want independently to disseminate their educational videos to students.
  • Applying for a University Google account.
    A Google Account provides unlimited network storage and email. This is the address for launching GoogleMeet channels used in online education and examinations.

More documents are expected to appear here...

  2) New services to support online education:

  • Video editing service. The staff of ESZK will soon launch a service that will support the final editing of raw recorded materials (video files, GoogleMeet lessons, ...) produced by instructors.
  • Camera rental available. Easy-to-use cameras with good image and sound quality to rent, which can be used independently (i.e. without a computer connection) in small and medium-sized rooms for video recording, but can also act as a webcam connected to a computer, which can be useful for online classes.
  • More information about the above services is available at the following link: https://munkatars.sze.hu/videovagasi-szolgaltatas

3) Moodle page for instructors, where resources and forums related to online education are available: https://szelearning.sze.hu/course/view.php?id=1660

Here it is worth asking questions e.g., in connection with the use of Moodle or GoogleMeet, but it is also useful for sharing good practice in teaching and examining.

4) Student identification support page: https://vizsgaazonositas.sze.hu/

By logging in to the site as an instructor, from the Neptune code it is possible to view the photo, name and card number on the individual’s student card from the official database. This helps identify students in online exams.

 

 

Annexe 2: Arrival rules for international students

International students will be admitted in accordance with the epidemiological rules currently in force. If there is a change to the rules for the admission and medical examination of international students subject to treatment equal to that of Hungarian citizens, we will act in accordance with the relevant government decree and the procedures of the Ministry for Innovation and Technology (ITM)

The National Directorate-General of Aliens Policing issues visas to all international students. In accordance with current regulations, incoming international students may enter the territory of Hungary if they request a dispensation in advance from the competent police authority by completing an equity request. The University issues to non-Hungarian students (hereinafter: student) a certificate provided by the Ministry for Innovation and Technology for entry from abroad. The identification of the student concerned on the basis of non-personal data (passport number and nationality) will be recorded on a central unified electronic interface by the National Police Headquarters for purposes of inspection.

Following entry, students will be assigned an official 10-day quarantine period in the university Hall of Residence. During the official house quarantine, students are not allowed to leave the room designated for them and food supplies will be provided via contactless delivery.

Despite the fact that the National Directorate of Aliens Policing ensures the issuance of visas to all students admitted to the University, due to regulations of the sending countries, the student's arrival and the specific date of arrival are uncertain. Due to the epidemiological situation, it may take longer to process visa applications.

Depending on the regulations of sending countries (e.g., airport travel restrictions), throughout the semester we provide conditions for the continuous arrival of international students. On English-taught programmes, during the semester students are required to participate in distance learning – via the Moodle system – which is provided in a similar way to programmes delivered in Hungarian.

In the interests of maintaining the quality of education, and in order to ensure the continuous integration of students arriving late or confined in official house quarantine, lecturers will upload the materials submitted for in-person education to the Moodle system on a weekly basis.

H-9026 Győr, Egyetem tér 1. 

Hungary

(Administrative Building 103.)

0036/96/613-700, 0036/503-419

international@sze.hu


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