MSc Economics and Strategy for Business Offer Holders
We are looking forward to welcoming you to Imperial this Autumn.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and in order to ensure that your degree programme can be safely delivered, we are writing to update you on how the College is planning to support a safe return to study and on how we intend to deliver your programme in 2021-22.
We encourage you to be in London from the start of the Autumn term if possible, in order that you can attend on-campus activities. However, as leaders in education technology, our multi-modal delivery offers flexibility to students, allowing you to join live sessions remotely and in real time if you cannot be on campus for any reason.
We are planning for the most crucial and engaging learning opportunities to be delivered in-person in multi-modal format. Exceptionally, lectures may be hosted fully online when this method is considered to be educationally beneficial to students, or when it is clear that online mode will reduce the risk of sustained COVID-19 transmission as our community emerges from the pandemic. We will use our experience of our past academic year when deciding how best to timetable your teaching.
It is important to recognise that, depending on official government guidance throughout the entirety of next academic year, the balance of on-campus and online teaching may be subject to change. However, we share students’ hopes that we will be able to offer on-campus learning activities consistently throughout the coming year.
Further details on the mix of on-campus and online activities and support available to you in your department are provided in the programme delivery section of this letter.
Our priority is for you to experience everything our campuses and London have to offer. However, you will be expected to adhere to the safety measures in place for the College. This may include expectations to undertake regular testing for COVID-19 and to report the outcome of this testing to the College. There is also the strong expectation that you will have been vaccinated against COVID-19, or that you will take up the opportunity once in the UK, if vaccination is not available in your home country. Vaccination is free for everyone in the UK, including international students. The College’s COVID-19 vaccination guidance can be found at the link below.
By following the latest guidance we can all support the College community to stay safe and satisfy the UK government that we can continue with in-person on-campus activities, wherever possible.
If there is an escalation of the pandemic, then, in line with guidance from the UK Government, we may be required to temporarily suspend all on-campus activity. If this happens, in-person activities will be delivered to all students online, or as an online alternative, that delivers the same approved learning outcomes. No additional fees will be charged if the programme cannot be delivered within the advertised timeframe.
Details for your programme are set out in this communication.
Attendance and Delivery of Teaching
As you can appreciate, it is not entirely clear what circumstances we will be working with for the coming academic year, but we are planning the delivery of your programme on the assumption that the majority of teaching will be delivered on-campus in multi-modal format unless students or faculty are required to self-isolate, or exceptionally online delivery provides a safer or more optimal learning experience.
We encourage you to attend the Business School in-person from the start of your programme. However, we understand there are some reasons you may be prevented from being able to travel to London or attend on-campus lectures for the start of the academic year. In these circumstances you will have the opportunity to follow all your lectures online. This option will remain in place during the Autumn term for all students. Please complete the attached survey indicating when you are planning to arrive on campus during the Autumn term.
We would expect all students to be on campus by the start of the Spring term unless you can demonstrate that you have been impacted by exceptional COVID-19 related circumstances or there is an escalation in the pandemic leading to changes in UK government advice. Please note that if you start a Master’s degree remotely in 21/22 you will need to arrive in the UK before 6 April 2022 in order to qualify for a Graduate Worker Route visa after the end of your programme. Further details about the Graduate Worker Route are available on our website.
As a community, we have learnt a lot from this past year. Our combination of cutting-edge technology and academic excellence resulted in some new and creative ways of learning and engaging with each other on campus and remotely. We will retain some of these approaches in the new academic year to enhance your overall experience on campus, and these are specified in this communication.
In the event of a temporary suspension of on-campus activity due to an escalation of the pandemic, we will deliver some content online and, if necessary and where appropriate, reschedule activities which cannot be delivered online later in the 2021-22 academic year. Depending on the length and severity of any such scenario, if we are unable to deliver content remotely or re-schedule activities requiring in-person attendance within the 2021-22 academic year to meet the learning outcomes of the programme, we may have to extend the length of your programme, with no extra fees being charged. You will also be given the option to exit the programme and provided with a transcript of the credits achieved together with an exit award, where appropriate.
For assessments that take place in the Autumn Term, or at the start of the Spring Term of the 2021/22 academic year, where there was to be an in-person on-campus written examination, these will be assessed by timed remote assessments, irrespective of whether there are restrictions in place or not. We may continue to deliver examinations by timed remote assessments where these are deemed the most appropriate method of assessment.
You will be required to follow the safety requirements put in place on campus and in all College buildings (including halls) to ensure we keep the campuses and the Imperial community safe and to mitigate the impact of the pandemic, particularly in our ability to deliver your degree programme and to offer you a full student experience.
There will be requirements and expectations placed on you and other members of the College community to follow the safety measures put in place by the UK government and national and local public health authorities. You can view our current guidance for our community on our website. This may vary once we begin the academic year, but is likely to include undertaking regular testing for COVID-19 and to report the results of this testing to the College, and an expectation that you will have been vaccinated against COVID-19 or that you will take up the opportunity once in the UK, if vaccination is not available in your home country. Failure to follow the safety measures and any reporting requirements may result in restrictions being imposed on the delivery of your degree programme and on your access to the wider student experience.
Your experience at Imperial goes beyond just your academic studies. With the impact of COVID-19, we aim to ensure that we are able to provide, enhance and facilitate all areas of your student experience in all eventualities. We identified key pillars of the wider student experience: academic experience; research culture and environment; amenities and accommodation; student community; wellbeing support; co-curricular activities and extra-curricular activities. Information on how we will deliver these, along with information on our Library Services and College-wide induction arrangements, considering current social distancing restrictions, as well as a full lockdown, are set out on our website.
At Imperial College Business School we aim to enable you to have an outstanding and interactive student experience, and to make connections across cultures and borders. We are dedicated to building our student community through networking, memory making events and other opportunities. We are committed to delivering these in person and online.
Delivery of your Programme of Study
The core departmental induction activities for your programme will take place on-campus in multi-modal format so students not on campus can also join online. These activities will be supplemented by some fully online activities. Further details will be provided nearer to the start of your programme.
Content of the programme
The College has reviewed the learning outcomes for your programme to ensure these can be taught and assessed in a fully face-to-face, multi-modal and/or online format. No changes to the module learning outcomes will need to be made as a consequence of moving to any of these formats.
We are not anticipating changing the term of when modules will be taught or assessed.
Programme Delivery 2021-22
We are expecting to teach on-campus in the next academic year with no social distancing in place unless the government guidelines change.
Should social distancing measures or a partial lockdown be in place at any time during the year, some lecture theatres may have a reduced capacity and modules may need to be taught with fewer students in the classroom and more students joining online. This may be amended during the year depending on the Public Health advice from the UK government, and can be complemented with other activities on your programme. In the event of a suspension of on-campus activity, your teaching will be delivered fully online until the campus reopens.
We use expert Visiting Lecturers and Guest Speakers to deliver content for some of our modules; some of these lecturers fly from overseas to deliver their talks on campus. We will do our best to accommodate these sessions on campus, however, should there be travel restrictions in place at the time of these sessions, they may take place online.
It is expected that the majority of projects will be delivered on-campus, but all projects on your programme can be completed remotely if required.
Support for online learning
To access the content of the programme online, you will be expected to have access to a computer (comparable to the laptop we offer for loan; HP EliteBook 840 G7, i5-10310U processor, 16Gb RAM, 256Gb solid state disk, 14” HD screen, Windows 10 Pro 64, webcam; see https://www8.hp.com/h20195/v2/GetDocument.aspx?docname=4AA7-6811ENUC), reliable internet connection with a minimum of sustained 10 MBps down/upload speed and be able to use Microsoft Teams and Zoom.
Your College IT account will provide you with free access to the Office365 suite of tools, and further information about how to use Microsoft Teams is available at https://www.imperial.ac.uk/admin-services/ict/self-service/connect-communicate/office-365/apps/microsoft-teams/ .
Training and support for how to use other systems and software will be provided during the programme induction and through specific modules.
Length of the programme
We anticipate you will be able to complete the programme within the timescale previously advertised.
The cost of your programme will remain as advertised.
You will be expected to have access to a computer, webcam, microphone and to a reliable internet connection, and you will need to cover any associated costs for these. There are no other expected additional costs (beyond those previously advertised) to participate in the programme if you choose to study remotely.
Imperial College Business School Careers will be delivering a full suite of Career Consulting and Employer Relations services with a combination of both on campus and online activity taking place.
Unless the government guidelines change, we will offer a variety of on-campus services including 1-1 appointments and group workshops. Meanwhile, online services will continue to be available for students who prefer that mode of engagement or where digital delivery has proven effective and has received positive feedback.
The majority of employer activity, including Careers Fairs and recruitment presentations, will take place online in Autumn 2021 though we aim to hold some on-campus activity where feasible.
Business School students also have access to events organised by Imperial College Careers Service who expect to deliver a full campus service in addition to some online provision, subject to government guidelines. Most of their employer activity will be online in Autumn 2021.
On site in-person teaching will be delivered at the South Kensington campus, White City (Scale Space) and in some external venues such as the Royal Geographical Society (South Kensington) where relevant.
Visas and Immigration
If you require a visa to study in the UK, it is important that you have read the guidance provided by the International Student Support Team at the College online.
Imperial has a team of specialist immigration advisers who can provide specific advice on your immigration situation and on the best options for you. They can be reached by email on email@example.com . It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct immigration permission for your studies in the UK.
The entire Imperial College Business School team is looking forward to welcoming you on campus this Autumn, and we applaud your commitment to your continued professional and leadership development and career advancement, in what are exceptional times.
Executive Director of Marketing, Recruitment, and Admissions
Imperial College Business School