Dubai Campus

What is the latest local health advice for the Dubai campus?

The education authority in Dubai has updated its guidance for private education institutions, including our campus, as a precautionary measure to limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) infection. Find out more below.

What if I’m going to study or work at the Dubai campus?

The University follows UK Government policy with regards to travelling on University business at all times as advised by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) travel advice. The current situation is that no travel is permitted.

The most recent advice from the Ministry of Education has directed all schools and Universities in the UAE to close beginning Sunday 8 March.

The University will continue to monitor the situation and will provide updated travel advice on this page. 

The concerns raised by this outbreak underline the importance of completing Heriot-Watt’s travel declaration form prior to travel. It is available on the Staff Portal or Student Portal and ensures the University knows where you are during your trip and can provide assistance if required. Staff travel booked using Heriot-Watt’s suppliers, Key Travel, also provides access to travel advice and extra support beyond what you receive if making the arrangements by other means.

If you have any further concerns, please contact your Academic Supervisor (students) or line manager (staff) in the first instance who will ensure you receive advice and support.

All travellers must download the SafeZone app and can use this to request assistance.

What is the most recent advice that has been issued regarding the coronavirus?
The most recent advice from the Ministry of Education has directed all schools and Universities in the UAE are to close from Sunday 8 March.
Why has this advice been issued?
This is part of the precautionary and proactive measures being undertaken to limit the spread of the coronavirus. During closure, facilities will be deep cleaned to help maintain a healthy and hygienic environment.
When does the Dubai campus close?
The wellbeing of our community is our top priority, so it is therefore essential we comply with these measures. As a precautionary measure, the Ministry of Education has directed all schools and universities in the UAE to close for students beginning on Sunday 8 March until 22 May. Our campus will be closed to students while staff continue to work as normal over the period.
How will faculty continue to teach during this time?
We have already shared additional guidance with faculty regarding support for students undertaking remote learning. Vision is key to providing remote support, alongside Microsoft Teams and Collaborate Ultra. Course material will support learning and our faculty is well equipped to continue teaching during this time.
How does this impact students’ education?

We have put in place a study contingency plan which will ensure learning continues without a hitch during this time.

Firstly, a two-week semester break for students will commence on 8th March and end on 21st March.

Next, this will be followed by a three-week period of supported learning during which we will use digital resources to assist students in achieving their learning outcomes. This means they will continue studying, but off Campus, with faculty providing support online. Course level communications will come from local course leaders.

And finally, decisions regarding assessments will reflect the ongoing situation and will be taken at a later time.

Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Vision is key to providing this remote support and all learning materials will be provided to through this platform.

Who in the University can I reach out to for more information?
If you or your families have any immediate concerns or questions, please get in touch with Dubai Student Services at DubaiStudentServices@hw.ac.uk.
What is the most recent advice given on gatherings and events?

Due to the campus being closed from Sunday 8 March, any events taking place on or after that date will be unable to occur, and events taking place before that date will be subject to review.

The Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) circular issued on 28 February also states that all internal and external trips should be halted, and that any scheduled competitions, festivities and gatherings inside educational institutions –especially those that require student gatherings – should be halted with immediate effect.

You can find the latest advice on the KHDA student safety webpages.

This includes:

  • all internal and external trips
  • competitions, festivals and activities inside the educational institutions, especially those that require student gatherings
  • events and activities between educational institutions or with other parties or partners, and any teacher events.
Why have all gatherings been cancelled?
Cancelling all gatherings is a precautionary measure undertaken by the KHDA to prevent any chance of the coronavirus being spread in Dubai. From Sunday 8 March, all events taking place will be unable to occur due to the campus being closed.
What kind of gatherings does this include?
It includes all events that bring together students from the same educational institutions such as sports days, international days or assemblies. It also includes all events that bring together students from different educational institutions. All excursions and other trips, whether inside or outside the UAE, are also cancelled.
Is this just for universities?
No. This decision applies to early learning centres and schools in Dubai as well.
What kinds of events are likely to be impacted by this ruling?
Activities such as academic field trips, site visits, recruitment events and associated partner visits, and student society gatherings must now be cancelled. Events scheduled to take place on our campus on or after Sunday 8 March cannot take place due to the campus closure.
I have an upcoming event and I am not sure if I can go ahead. Who can advise?

Due to the campus being closed from Sunday 8 March, any events taking place on or after that date cannot take place, and events taking place before that date will be subject to review.

If in doubt about an event you have planned, please get in touch as follows:

Any upcoming events will be reviewed on a daily basis for approval.

I have an event that was already approved by the KHDA. Can I still go ahead with it?
No. The KHDA circular states that all pre-planned trips and related approvals issued by the KHDA are now void.
Who can I contact for more information about the coronavirus?

You can ring the main health agencies on these numbers:

  • Estijaba Service – 800 1717 
  • Dubai Health Authority – 800 342 
  • Ministry of Health and Prevention – 800 11111
What about faculty and Professional Services Staff?
Faculty and Professional Services staff such as Careers, Wellbeing etc. will also continue to work during the four-week period and provide support via email and videoconferencing. Course specific queries may be directed to course leaders.
What do I do if I think my flatmate is unwell with the virus?
If your flatmate is unwell, ask them to remain in their room for the next seven days. You should notify 'Estijaba' service at the operation center – Department of Health at 8001717, or Ministry of Health and Prevention at 80011111 or Dubai Health Authority at 800342
How does this impact students' education?

We have put in place a study contingency plan which will ensure learning continues without a hitch during this time.

Firstly, a two-week semester break for students will commence on 8th March and end on 21st March

Next, this will be followed by a three-week period of supported learning during which we will use digital resources to assist students in achieving their learning outcomes. This means they will continue studying, but off Campus, with faculty providing support online. Course level communications will come from local course leaders

And finally, decisions regarding assessments will reflect the ongoing situation and will be taken at a later time.

Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Vision is key to providing this remote support and all learning materials will be provided to through this platform.