Covid-19 Update

McGill University is taking appropriate precautions and monitoring the situation.

Faculty of Education COVID-19 FAQs


Essential information

  • McGill campuses are closed, except for necessary activities, until May 1.

  • Classes, teaching labs, exams and other assessments (except theses defenses) are suspended until March 30.

  • The Spring Convocation ceremonies have been called off.

  • The Summer 2020 semester will go ahead through remote learning.

  • Students will not be required to be on campus for the rest of the Winter 2020 term.

  • There will be no in-person classes and no in-person sit-down examinations for this term.

  • The term will not be extended.

  • As COVID-19 University procedures may change regularly, this Faculty of Education COVID-19 page will display the most up to date information available. Please consult it regularly to keep yourself informed.


McGill Resources for COVID-19 Updates and Information:

  • The University’s coronavirus website remains the most up to date source of information for the McGill community.
  • McGill University FAQs Page (includes health, McGill operations, academic & research, working during closure, travel restrictions)
  • Watch video updates from Associate Provost Chris Buddle on McGill’s Facebook page
  • Visit McGill University’s FAQ page
  • Student Wellness Hub (online and phone only)
  • Quebec Health Toll-Free Number for COVID-19 is1.877.644.4545

McGill University COVID-19 Protocols

All universities in Quebec have been directed to close until May 1st. What does this mean for McGill University?

Based on Quebec government directives, the University is suspending all classes, teaching labs, exams and other assessments (except theses defenses) for until Sunday March 29. As of March 30, remote instruction will begin and the remainder of the semester and exam period dates still apply. Note that students can continue to reach out to their professors with any questions.

What is the purpose of the University shutdown?

The objective of the shutdown is to apply physical distancing measures, in order to mitigate the spread of the virus. We ask you to apply the measures as much as possible, and only venture out for essential items and services that can not be delivered or dome remotely. These practices should be taken seriously in order to maintain one’s own health and not put members of the vulnerable population at risk. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

Is campus accessible if I need to pick something up?

The Education Building, Duggan House, Coach House, and Currie Gymnasium are now closed. If you require emergency access (e.g., to collect prescription medication from your office), please call Campus Security at 514-398-3731. The agent will ask for your McGill ID number and dispatch a security guard to your location once your affiliation with the Faculty of Education has been verified.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact Professor Dennis Jensen, Associate Dean, Infrastructure (dennis.jensen [at]

Education Parking Lot:

Due to building access restrictions presently in place, the Education Building and garage is also closed. Education garage permit holders must park in the nearby exterior lots because the Education Building and the garage will be closed. Please ensure your permit is displayed while parked. 

How is the Faculty providing updates regarding the COVID-19?

We are working closely with our colleagues across McGill University to provide the most accurate and up to date information. We will provide frequent updates with our community using email and this dedicated COVID-19 FAQ. If you are not receiving these emails, please check your junk folder and reach out to your Department Chair (staff and graduate students) or to [at] (ISA) (undergraduate students).

As we may not have the administrative resources to fully monitor the Faculty and Departmental social media sites, and as such all COVID-19 questions should be emailed to [at] or for Faculty-specific questions, please use the following contacts:

  • For Staff: allyson.noftall [at]
  • For Graduate Students: alain.breuleux [at] and
  • For Undergrad Students:
    • Student Affairs: [at]
    • Student Teaching: [at]
    • Career Services: [at]

How often will I receive updates from the Faculty during this closure?

The Dean’s Office has been emailing updates as situations change, protocols are established, and new information is available. Please check your email regularly and refer back to this site for updates. If you are not receiving these updates, please contact your Department's Administrative Officer. In addition, academic and admin staff are invited to participate in scheduled Town Hall meetings chaired by the Dean.


Health and Wellbeing

I have flu-like symptoms. What should I do?

If you are showing flu-like symptoms, please call 1-877-644-4545 immediately and isolate yourself from others. Based on your symptoms and travel history, a health care professional will advise you on the best course of action.

I am feeling anxious about how the changes will impact my completion of the semester

In order to condense the remainder of the course into the final weeks of the semester, instructors are making adjustments to course outlines and should update you with any changes by March 24, 2020.

All classes, where possible, will resume in an online format and you will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback before any assessment takes place. Until then, please take this time to focus on your health and wellbeing.

I’m trying to work from home and care for my children at the same time. How do I do this?

We understand that everyone’s circumstances are different and that we are all doing the best we can under unprecedented circumstances. Some schools have supplied children with online curriculum resources and games. There are also virtual field trips. Try making a schedule that accommodates both your needs and your family’s needs, to the best of your ability and reach out for help when you need to.

  • For HR guidance: simona.lupu [at]
  • For IT Support: itsupport [at]

What mental health resources are available for students?

An updated list of Mental Health and Physical Health resources can be found on the Student Wellness Hub website. You can also consult the Faculty of Education's Wellness Advisor.

Groups and workshops are also available give you tools to support your well-being as a student, or simply as a person, during this uncertain time. Services are now available for students virtually through the Student Wellness Hub, which can be found here: Wellness & Life Skills Workshops & Groups

What do I do if I've experienced harassment resulting from COVID-19 prejudices?

If this is happening within your McGill Community, report it at


Academics and Research

Are all academic activities suspended? What about exams?

All forms of assessment (e.g., midterm, quiz, paper, project, assignment, etc.) scheduled between March 14 and March 29 are suspended, even if they could be submitted digitally.

The regular exam period will be maintained, but there will be no in-person sit-down final exams. Instructors are evaluating the use of other exam formats (e.g., online open-book, take-home examination, online proctoring of final examinations with University-provided software) and will let you know by March 24 as to their revised Course Outline and assessment plans.

Will there be a convocation? Can/will it be postponed?

The Spring Convocation ceremonies have been cancelled. The University is exploring alternative ways for the community to come together to commemorate these academic achievements at some point in the near future.

Will the University offer online classes during the initial two-week closure?

The two-week closure prohibits all instructional activity until Sunday, March 29, inclusive. However, we are working with our faculty members to transition their classes to remote instruction, to be ready as of March 30. All instructors should be using methods that will keep these courses restricted to the students registered in their class, and should avoid any public forums.

What can I do during the shutdown to continue learning? Can I connect with professors?

We understand that such a pause at this time of a semester is challenging. You can reach out to professors for counsel and general academic alignment, but any forms of assessment are suspended. Also please be respectful of your professors’ time, as they are also trying to navigate their own circumstances, both adjusting their academic activities and their personal/family situations.

Remote instruction is new to me. What resources are available to help me?

McGill's Teaching and Learning Services (TLS) has provided a brief guide for instructors that can be downloaded here. If you have further trouble, please contact your Department Chair.

Can I go back home to my family and still take my exams?

We strongly recommend that you reach out to your country’s consulate to determine if you can go back and on what terms. Please use careful judgement when considering personal travel; restrictions imposed by other countries could delay your departure from Canada. You might be asked to adhere to steps for re-entry and self-isolation when coming back to your country.

What is the status of courses and/or the program scheduled to start Fall 2020?

The summer semester will go ahead through remote instruction. We are still actively recruiting students from across the world for the Fall semester, and are confident that we can deliver high-quality learning, whether remotely or in person.

Why is research being ramped-down on campus?

The  government's  and McGill's default position is that all non-essential research activities on campus must be postponed or halted in the short term to preserve the health and safety of our society and “flatten the curve” of the pandemic. Ultimately, we must accept that the current COVID-19 situation is a unique emergency that requires exceptional measures that will inevitably have important impacts on everyone's work. McGill is in communication with funding agencies to address the resulting issues. 

Is there any financial assistance available for graduate students, now that research is ramping down?

Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies will be offering emergency financial aid to graduate students in precarious financial situations due to circumstances surrounding COVID-19.
Students can fill out the application form here:

Will the April 15 thesis submission deadline be extended?

Yes, GPS has extended the deadline to April 30 at 11:59 PM. Please see

What should graduate students who have a thesis defense scheduled do?

Thesis defenses are indeed still slated to take place as scheduled, using online resources. If this poses a problem due to health or personal circumstances, please contact your supervisor to discuss.

Can students continue to do research online?

Yes, students and faculty can continue to do research online, as long as they had permission from REB to do the research previously. If they want to start new research online, they will need to follow usual ethics rules and get REB approval. If they want to move their in-person research online, there is an REB form to complete just to document, but a new approval process is not needed.

Are normal protocol for the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) option suspended?

Because of the exceptional circumstances, the normal protocol for the Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) option is suspended for Programs and courses which are not already graded on a Pass-Fail basis. For this term, all students, whether undergraduate or graduate, may exercise the S/U option for their courses, provided that doing so would not run counter to any requirements, timelines, or policies set by their respective programs of study or external accreditation bodies.

Courses for which the S/U option is exercised will not be calculated in a student’s GPA but will contribute to credits completed. Courses for which the S/U option is exercised this term may count toward a student’s major or minor requirements, and courses for which the S/U option is exercised this term will not count toward the maximum number of credits that a student may designate as S/U (i.e., up to 10 per cent of total degree credits).

The date by which students may exercise the S/U option is May 22, 2020, reflecting that students’ grades are known by this time. The deadline for selecting a Withdrawal from a course in Minerva has been extended to April 15, 2020 (effective Monday March 23). This will result in a student receiving a notation of “W” on their transcript for the course in question, which means it is excluded from any GPA calculation or to credits completed. We realize students have many questions.

We are currently working on implementation plans, and we are also committed to providing students additional academic measures for this term. More information will be coming to students in the week of March 23, including details from their own Faculties about how these options will apply to individual programs.

While we await further details, we have provided answers to some common questions about the S/U option on the FAQs page of the Coronavirus website.

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