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Questions & answers from our latest video (March 27, 2020)

You can find video here

1. What will happen will all the students, which are currently abroad? When can they return?

This is not our call – it depends on the government orders, currently prohibiting travel to make the whole country isolation aimed to slow down and limit the spread of COVID-19 work. According to my recent consultation with an immigration lawyer, those with long-term study visa/long-term permit should be able to return; however, finding the means of transportation is another challenge.

2. Will we be able to graduate in time (with special regards to our 6th Year)?

We already declared to do our best to enable all sixth years to graduate by September 30 (and also to the remaining years, to be able to advance to the next one). However, for those who counted on graduating early (before July 1), it depends on how quickly will be adopted temporary measures enabling online exams, in particular state exams, or how quickly will be the restrictive measures released – which is partly beyond our control.

3. Is there a possibility to do exams online? What about state-exams?

At the present, it is possible to do some forms of control of study online – and we expect this list will be expanded as the situation evolves. We recognize it is a big issue for those who are now at home without an easy way to return (about 200 of our 700 English parallel students). The possibility to do even state exams online is currently debated by the University academic senate – as it includes the necessity to change the law. It requires also an agreement of the Dean and appropriate State Exam Subject guarantor. It will be discussed coming Monday by Dean’s Board, and the results will be announced as soon as a conclusion is reached.

4. What will happen with the mandatory summer-clerkship in 2nd, 4th and 5th Year?

It was already agreed that for some clerkships (Patient Care, Internal Medicine), any volunteering activity in healthcare environment in any country will be recognized; for the Ob&Gyn and Surgery, this needs to be in the appropriate departments.

We have challenged the Czech students to help those who are staying to get the required hours of practical experience in local hospitals (similar to the TANDEM project) – if it becomes possible, even for them. Student representatives are now compiling the lists of a) those who are in need, and b) those who are willing to help.

5. Should I leave or stay?

This is a good question. Considering your age and the epidemiological situation, you are quite safe here – and you can re-start contact learning and exams as soon as it becomes possible. However, the required practical experience might be easier to obtain in your home country – but there is the big unknown about the travel. Thus, everyone must consider his or her particular situation and also the potential transportation difficulties (might be different for a student from a neighboring country with his own means of transportation, and someone from the other end of the world). Travel/visa matters are negotiated centrally by the University (possibility of return of students in need), and your embassy should be able to give you the most up-to-date information for your particular country, including organized re-patriation. It is a difficult decision, and one should stick to whichever option for some time – across the border travel is exactly what made this pandemic, so this is why it is now restricted.

6. What about the obligatory student work for 5th and 6th year? Is it also relevant for students of the English Parallel?

Technically, the law (which is a universal one for all extraordinary situations that could have an impact on “critical European infrastructure” applies even to foreigners present here (think filling the sandbags in the event of floods). However, this particular issue was already resolved between the City of Prague (responsible for organizing this work) and the University, and the foreign students are exempt. However, as always, any voluntary activity, to which over 160 of you have already signed up, is welcome and appreciated!

7. Some of us need to start applying for visa extensions soon, seeing as they stop giving visas, for now, can the university help us communicate with the government so we are able to ensure our visas for next year?

This matter was passed to the University and we hope to have the answers soon. However, there is exhaustive info in English of the web of the Ministry of Interior:

Most of the Dentistry students questions will be answered by the respective Vice Dean, Prof. Foltan, next week. However, two that are not covered above and that pertain to general issues are addressed here:

8. How will continue the preclinical and clinical teaching?

The classes continue in the distance form – for all pre-clinical department it means electronic learning including online seminars, and as much live interactionas possible is continuously added. For the clinical year, it varies according to the particular departments. Dentistry classes also vary depending whether patient contact is essential (log book), and details will be addressed by Prof. Foltan.

9. Will there be any refund of the tuition fee?

Since the classes continue, albeit in the distance form, and the tuition fee is for the academic year, there are no grounds for that. However, we will NOT ask for any extra fee for forced prolongation of time needed to complete the current academic year if the problem is that we were unable to provide the required opportunity (applicable e.g. to final year dentistry, where a certain number of procedures is required for the state exam).

Stay strong and keep going!

David Sedmera, Vice-Dean for International Students


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