COVID-19 scare: Chinese universities offer to conduct online classes

The COVID-19 might have gripped everyone with anxiety and made people stick to their home country, putting on hold plans, including academic. However, universities in China are trying not to let the situation postpone academics or waste time.

Though students from Telangana, who are pursuing MBBS in various universities in China, were asked not to return to the universities, they were informed that the universities were going to conduct online classes.

In China, medical students are granted summer and winter vacations of 40 days or more each. This year, the date on which vacation started varied between January 1 and 15. But it ends on February 28 for every one, and classes resume in March first week. While some have returned to home-town in Telangana, some stayed back.

To avoid possible spread of COVID-2019, the universities have asked them not to be in a hurry to return to universities. Raja Ram, managing partner of Medico Abroad Consultancy, who facilitates pursuit of MBBS in China by students from here, said that a university located in Liaoning province sent the communication to students on February 18.

“Citing direction from the Ministry of Education there, Jinzhou Medical University has stated that the classes would be conducted online. There are over 200 students from Telangana studying in the university,” Mr Ram said. Further communication stated that students were required to stay in their country or city, and wait for further information.

However, internship as part of MBBS course or practical courses cannot be offered online. A final year student from the university, who is pursuing internship, said they were supposed to graduate in June this year. “Since the internship cannot be offered online, graduation will be postponed,” the student from Hyderabad who did not want name to be quoted said.

Paul Surya Teja, who is pursuing MBBS third year from Qiqihar Medical University located in Heilongjiang province, said they were informed that demo online classes would commence on February 5. If there were no hiccups, online courses would start. “We knew that the university in China will do something not to waste time,” Mr Teja, who lives in Hyderabad, said.

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