Please remember that closing educational institutions to students and promoting remote working are just part of the public health response, and that to protect yourselves and others the following are even more important:
- Wash your hands properly and often
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze.
- Put used tissues into a bin and wash your hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Avoid close contact with people - keep a distance of 2 metres (6.5 feet) between you and others.
- Avoid crowded places, especially indoors.
- Follow the travel advice from the Department of Foreign Affairs - LINK
- Stay at home if you are sick to help stop the spread of whatever infection you may have.
- Help slow the spread of coronavirus
To help slow the spread of coronavirus:
- Anyone who has symptoms should self-isolate for 14 days
- Everyone should limit unnecessary social contact as much as possible
- At-risk groups should avoid close contact with people outside the home
If you need personal health advice specifically in relation to COVID-19 (coronavirus), you should call the HSE helpline service or your GP. Please do not attend the Student Health Centre, your GP or hospital emergency department without phoning in advance.
If you are diagnosed with COVID-19: let us know immediately. Similarly, if you are a staff member and a student or staff member informs you they have been diagnosed with COVID-19, let us know immediately.
Please follow the HSE guidelines around social distancing, maintaining a distance of at least 2 metres between yourself and other people. Please avoid crowded places in the weeks ahead and limit your own social interactions. We ask you to do this for three reasons. Firstly, to protect yourselves from infection. Secondly, to slow down the spread of COVID-19 in order to protect at risk people, some of whom may die if they contract the virus. And thirdly, to reduce pressure on our healthcare system.
This does not mean that you should avoid the company of others completely. In fact, it is important for your mental wellbeing to keep in contact with friends and family; just please maintain social distancing by completely foregoing meeting in groups, especially social gatherings or party environments.
All face-to-face lectures, tutorials and practical classes are cancelled until the end of the semester. Teaching will continue using remote methods. The University examinations will not take place in person, and the University will use alternative assessments or remote examinations.
During this period you should do your best to ensure that you continue with your studies. You should make arrangements to study online. You will need access to a computer and good internet connectivity, and a quiet place to study. You should also check your MU email account regularly and check the Moodle space for each of your modules for updates.
Teaching will be provided through Moodle. At a minimum it will be a Word document or a PowerPoint file for each lecture. Some lecturers will also add a voice commentary in the PowerPoint files, or provide a screencast. Some may also provide live broadcast lectures, although we know this may be difficult for those with poor internet connectivity.
In most cases your tutorials will continue as online tutorials. Your tutor will decide on which technology to use, and these may take the form of a Moodle forum, or a Moodle chat, or a conference call through MS Teams.
Laboratories and practical work will be disrupted. We are working to provide the nearest viable alternative, to ensure that you achieve the learning objectives of the module. In some cases, this may mean a significant change in the content of the module and updates to the course outlines you have received before.
If you are on a placement and your host organisation/employer is able to allow you to continue, it is reasonable to continue. However if the placement cannot continue, or it is not safe for you to continue, then you may suspend the placement. We will then provide the opportunity to do a substantial written assignment, to make up the missing credits and allow you to progress with your degree. If you are asked to stop the placement, make contact with the University office that organised your placement.
For those on teaching placements, the schools are closed and the relevant departments have already made arrangements to ensure that your programmes can continue.
The university examinations will not take place this semester in the usual format. The examinations will be replaced by remote assessments, including assignments, timed remote assessments and in some cases video interviews. As far as possible assessments will be completed by the scheduled dates.
We plan to have resit examinations in August as usual.
All of the exams scheduled for the end of May are cancelled and will be replaced with assessments that can be done remotely. These will take different forms, which can include:
- “Take home” exams that you can do over a period of a day or a few days
- Timed exams that you will get at a specific time, and have to return a few hours later
The Professors/Lecturers leading each module will provide the details of the assessment for that module. If a module is using a timed exam this will usually be scheduled in the normal exam period from 15-29 May, and all assessments should be complete by 29th May.
The exam timetable can be accessed now at https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/exams/examination-timetable-information
To ensure that the assessments are a fair reflection of your work, Academic Council has agreed that each Department may call some students for a video interview after the exams. The marks may be adjusted following these interviews.
Re-sit in August
Those who do not complete the assessment, or do not pass, will have the opportunity to take supplemental re-sits in August as usual. Because of the unusual circumstances this year the following measures will apply to the re-sits (including re-sit of first semester modules):
- There will be no additional fee for re-sit examinations this August.
- In the cases where there is a cap on the mark you can earn in re-sits, this cap will not be applied this year.
If you want to re-sit you will need to register for the re-sits. Details about how to register will be available on the Exams Office website in late June when the results are released.
These measures are intended to provide a safety net and to ensure that no student is unfairly disadvantaged by the national emergency. However, we recommend that you should try, as far as possible, to do the assessments in May.
For International Students at Maynooth:
If you are an international student in Maynooth and you go home, we will facilitate you completing your modules and your assessment remotely.
For MU students studying abroad:
If you are a Maynooth University student currently studying for a year abroad, your host university may have closed for teaching. If this arises, you should see if there is an option to continue your studies remotely. If that option is not available, we will arrange an alternative task and assessment which you can do to make up the missing credits and complete your degree, assuming that you passed at least 25 credits in your first semester abroad.
Student Health Centre
The Student Health Centre is operating a limited (GP only) telephone consultation service at the moment. If you wish to make an appointment please email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Counselling Service is operating remotely and offering students telephone consultations. To request an appointment you can use the request a call back feature.
The Chaplain is operating remotely and offering telephone appointments. You can email email@example.com
to request an appointment.
Student Budgeting Advice Service
Student Support Hub
The Student Support Hub team are working remotely and available on firstname.lastname@example.org
to answer your queries.
The University residences remain open. Students who wish to stay until the end of their lease are welcome to do so. Students who decide to vacate their university accommodation will have their rent refunded.
Students who are in private rented accommodation and are being asked to leave should contact the Accommodation Office if they wish to avail of university accommodation.
During these restrictions, the University will continue to operate, but most teaching will be done remotely.
Phase 1 of the Government's Roadmap for reopening society and business will commence on Monday, 18 May. During this period:
- Everyone who can work effectively from home should continue to do so, and non-essential travel should not be undertaken.
- The campus is not open, and there is no general access, but you may access your office in limited circumstances if you cannot otherwise prepare for or deliver remote teaching and assessment. Approval from your Head of Department is required in all instances.
- Always observe physical distancing of 2m and ensure thorough hand hygiene. These are key individual responsibilities to minimise the spread of the virus.
- Employees should wash their hands when they arrive and leave.
- Essential access will be limited to an individual’s office, provided it is not shared. If you work in a shared office, you should co-ordinate with your colleagues to make sure that you are not there at the same time.
- There will be no general access to any shared facilities, except toilets.
- Toilets will be cleaned every evening, but it is the responsibility of every individual to ensure personal hand hygiene on leaving the toilets.
- Anyone who does require access to their office should make their way directly to their office and avoid congregating in groups. Once the essential work is complete, you should leave the campus directly.
- Buildings will remain locked, the main buildings will be on swipe card access from 8.00-18.00 Monday-Saturday, and security staff will open other buildings as requested. If you have been approved to come on campus, it is advisable to contact security at email@example.com a few days in advance to let them know your staff number and the building you wish to access. This will allow security to make sure your swipe card is still active, as some of the cards may have timed-out
We realise this situation raises a number of other questions for staff. All queries can be directed to your Head of Department or directly to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Maynooth University Email to All Staff – 18 March, 2020
Guidance for Health and Safety
Guidance for Data Protection
Guidance on expenses and tax relief
In line with Revenue guidelines, MU employees working from home to support a national public health objective, such as COVID-19, may be entitled to make a claim on their personal tax return for expenses incurred wholly, exclusively and necessarily in the performance of the duties of the employment. Such expenses will need to be supported by receipts. Employees can make a claim at the end of the year when filing tax returns. Revenue will allow a claim based on actual utility expenses incurred (e.g. light and heat) and the number of days spent e-working. Revenue will allow 10% of this figure as a tax deduction to represent the proportion spent to maintain a home. For more information, see
e-Working and Tax
and the Revenue website here.
Special Leave Arrangement
The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and the Department of Education and Skills provide advice regarding COVID-19 related Special Leave arrangements that may be extended to employees. Special Leave may be availed of in circumstances where HSE or medical advice is that the employee must self-isolate. The HSE sets out the criteria regarding self-isolation relating to COVID-19:
If you have been advised to self-isolate, you should contact your Head of Department/Line Manager to inform them of your self-isolation situation, including the date of commencement, number of days advised to self-isolate, and from whom the advice was received. To avail of Special Leave, you will be required to complete a COVID-19 Self Declaration Form which includes written confirmation of your circumstances. This form is available, on request, from Human Resources (email@example.com)
Additional information and relevant circulars can be found at:
Please read the latest travel advice from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
If the DFAT advice for a country or region is “do not travel” or “avoid non-essential travel,” then it remains university policy that you should not travel.
The government has advised all Irish residents against all non-essential travel overseas at this time.
All persons, including Irish residents, entering the country from overseas should restrict movements for 14 days, if showing no symptoms. This includes Great Britain but does not apply to Northern Ireland.
Student Health Centre / Student Services
Student Services, including the health centre and counselling, will remain open remotely. Students should contact these offices by email or phone, rather than in person.
The University Library is closed. Information about online services is available here.
Catering outlets, the sports facilities and the crèche are closed.
We have had reports from staff and students that working from home can be challenging with a poor internet connection. Here are some things you can do to try work around this.
Reduce Connected Devices
You should minimise the amount of devices & gadgets you have connecting to the same wifi e.g. phones, tablets, laptops etc. The more devices that are connecting, the more the bandwidth for that household is divided.
Switch Off Apps
Secondly if you have disconnected some devices, you should minimise the apps running at the same time or that may be running in the background. You should shut down anything that is not essential if you are really trying to send out an important email etc.
Ethernet Connection (Cable)
If you have a laptop with an ethernet network port you would have a more reliable connection than wifi. You could connect directly to the wifi router with an ethernet cable. This connection may also be a bit faster as well as being more reliable.
You can also use your mobile phone as a hotspot. If you have limited data in your phone plan this can be expensive, and you will want to use it as little as possible.
Please find below step by step instructions to allow you to use either your iPhone or Android phone as a personal wireless hotspot.
Ensure Mobile Data is switched on and that you have a 4G connection
On the Home screen tap to open the Settings app
Tap Personal Hotspot, then move the slider to switch on
Move the slider to ‘allow others to join’
Set your wifi password
Your phone hotspot should now be discoverable on your wireless enabled device if it’s within close range. To join select the name of your phone from the available wireless networks and enter the password you set on your phone.
Make sure to undo these settings when you have finished.
Ensure Mobile data is switched on and that you have a 4G connection
Depending on your phone and the version of Android the settings might be slightly different
On the Home screen tap to open the Settings icon
Go to Wireless & Networks (or possibly Wireless & Networks, then Connections)
Click on Mobile Hotspot & Tethering (or possibly Tethering & Portable Hotspot)
Move the slider to switch hotspot on
Set the password you wish to use, change the network name if you wish and depending on your phone you can even set a data or time limit to your session.
Your phone hotspot should now be discoverable on your wireless enabled device if it’s within close range. To join, select the name of your phone from the available wireless networks and enter the password you set on your phone.
Make sure to undo these settings when you have finished.
Please note, turning your phone into a hotspot can drain the battery so it might be wise to have it plugged in or fully charged if possible.
If your phone doesn’t have the option to use it as a hotspot check with your phone provider to see if it is available as part of your phone plan
Depending on the data limits allowed in your phone plan, this option can be expensive
All events on campus during this period are cancelled
Maynooth University will be working with the Department of Education and Skills, so that we make Round 1 CAO offers as soon as possible after the Irish calculated grades are published later in the summer. We look forward to early confirmation by the Department of Education and Skills of the date by which the calculated grades will be made available to the CAO, so that new university students can begin their studies as soon as possible in the new academic year. This work and all planning for the 2020-21 academic year will continue to be guided by the latest public health advice.