Why SWOTVAC is shorter in Semester 2

Please note: an earlier version of this story mistakenly said Semester 2 was “delayed”, when in fact it was brought forward. We’ve updated the article to reflect this. We apologise for any concern this might have caused.

Semester 2 SWOTVAC is shorter than normal this year as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on our academic calendar. Changes to the 2020 academic calendar were necessary to facilitate our move to online study earlier this year and ensure all students had the best opportunity to complete subjects and ‘make up’ classes before the end of the year.

How COVID-19 changed the 2020 academic calendar

Responding to the outbreak of COVID-19 this year has continued to be a complex and challenging task for the University, but from the start of the outbreak it has been our priority to ensure all La Trobe students can progress and complete their studies as planned. COVID-19 has caused significant disruption to teaching and learning in 2020 and resulted in significant changes to our academic calendar including:

  • A weeklong pause to teaching activity in March, to move teaching online, delayed the end of Semester.
  • The introduction of new 6 Term model, that runs until Christmas, to provide time for ‘make up’ classes later in the year.

These factors have resulted in the need for a condensed SWOTVAC period for Semester 2 2020.

Support for students

We know how important SWOTVAC is for students and we have explored a range of options to maintain its original length. Unfortunately, after exploring all options, we determined that the current academic calendar best ensures we can deliver the University’s study program for the year without overlapping with Christmas.

To support students during this time we are:

  • Removing all examinations currently scheduled for Friday 23 October as this has been deemed a Public Holiday. This will provide an additional day of study for all students.
  • Carefully timetabling final assessments to schedule, wherever possible, subjects that finish early in Week 12 at the beginning of the exam block and those completing later towards the end of the exam block.
  • Encouraging academic staff to consider potential adjustments to delivery of classes in the final week.

Exam and assessment support

As we will be continuing with remote delivery for the remainder of the semester, all exams will again be offered in remote format. In most cases we will limit the need for you to sit time dependent exams and provide a greater timeframe for you to complete your assessment.

We appreciate this is not an ideal scenario and as always we appreciate your patience and understanding as we continue to navigate the challenges and complexities brought about by COVID-19.