Campus - 28.08.2020 - 00:00 

Autumn Semester 2020 at the HSG: First medical students in St.Gallen

14 September 2020 will see the launch of Autumn Semester 2020 at the University of St.Gallen (HSG). For approx. 1,900 new students, the academic year will already start with the StartWeek of 7-11 September. In addition, 27 medical students will for the first time take up their studies in the Joint Medical Master in St.Gallen. The University of St.Gallen’s code of conduct prescribes the general conditions for studying and working on the campus in this extraordinary year.

28 August 2020. After successful graduation from their three-year undergraduate course at the University of Zurich, the medical students of the St.Gallen track will continue their studies in the Joint Medical Master’s course at the HSG. Training for the medical Master’s degree will be provided through a cooperation venture between the St.Gallen Cantonal Hospital and the Universities of St.Gallen and Zurich. In cooperation with further Eastern Swiss partners, they will offer the new course in medicine for the first time.

First medical students in St.Gallen

The medical students’ introduction week will start on the HSG campus on 7 September 2020. Subsequently, the lion’s share of the course will be taught in the HSG building in St.Jakobsstrasse 21, while the clinical courses will take place in the hospitals in the afternoons. Additionally, the University of Zurich will provide a certain number of live streams of lectures for the students of the Joint Medical Master in the mornings. The St.Gallen Cantonal Hospital, as well as further hospitals and primary care providers will run the practice-oriented courses on site. Like any other course at the HSG, the Joint Medical Master will be subject to the corona measures of conduct and protection. Furthermore, the situation of the hospitals will have to be taken into consideration (teachers’ working options, clinical courses in the hospitals, etc.). The voting public of the Canton of St.Gallen approved the new Joint Medical Master in St.Gallen at the ballot box in June 2018, with no fewer than 86 per cent of votes.

Provisional student numbers

A total of 9,221 students have enrolled for Autumn Semester 2020 (preceding year: 8,872 enrolled students). 1,927 are expected in the Assessment Year (preceding year: 1,769) and 3,075 (3,207) at the Bachelor’s Level. 3,548 (3,349) students have enrolled at the Master’s Level. At the Ph.D. Level, 609 (629) people have enrolled at the University of St.Gallen. Another 36 (34) students have put their names down for supplementary courses. As usual, the accurate enrolment statistics for Autumn Semester 2020 will be published around mid-December; experience shows that by that time, the number of students will have decreased. This is because some students are still at a stage where they are trying to find their bearings and will either not take up their studies at all or will drop out after a few weeks. The code of conduct regulates teaching and working practice at the University of St.Gallen in the autumn semester of this pandemic year.

StartWeek: “Artificial Intelligence”

One week before the start of the semester, the new students of the Assessment Year will meet for the StartWeek from 7 September in order to familiarise themselves with the University environment. The StartWeek is an integral component of the Assessment Year. Precisely on its 20th anniversary, the StartWeek is facing an unprecedented situation: a limited number of people in classrooms, distancing rules, hygiene measures, etc., will prevent the StartWeek from being run in its customary format. In this corona pandemic year, the StartWeek cannot take place as a pure classroom event with up to 2,000 people on the campus at the same time, and with various plenary sessions.

While implementing the corona protection concept, the StartWeek team has therefore specially developed a hybrid concept of on-campus presence and in-air formats (digital). Thus only ever a certain number of new students will be on the campus, “isolated” in the sense of “permanent teams”, and almost all contents will be provided exclusively online. This will also prepare the new students for their hybrid studies in Autumn Semester 2020. The case study topic of this year’s StartWeek is “Artificial Intelligence”. The StartWeek participants’ work on this topic will be supervised by 170 tutors in 60 groups. The StartWeek can be staged thanks to numerous partnerships.

Semester start with the HSG Kick-off Days

In the week of 7-12 September 2020, the HSG will also welcome more than 900 students at the Bachelor’s, Master’s and Ph.D. Levels on the occasion of the Kick-off Days. The introduction programmes at the individual degree course levels will be run completely online for the first time this autumn. In the context of the academic programme, the newcomers will deal with the challenges and crises in a global context, become acquainted with academic and administrative processes of HSG degree courses and gain an insight into the campus landscape.

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