Student Expectations

Student Expectations – Fall 2020

In late June the Marine Institute developed a series of commitments to our students. These commitments were developed in consultation with the Marine Institute Student Union and set the foundation for the development of our transition programming for the Fall 2020 semester.

Fall 2020 Commitments
  • To provide a quality learning experience in the Fall semester
  • To provide clear expectations for students in our remote delivery for all years of all programs
  • To be transparent in our communication to students and responsive to student feedback
  • To be committed to develop the sense of community that we are proud of at MI
  • To maintain our small class sizes and student and faculty engagement and foster student connection to their program of study
  • To continue to be committed to high levels of student support across all areas and levels of study

Expanding on these commitments, MI has developed a series of expectations for the Fall 2020 semester. These expectations will provide students with further clarity and transparency as to what the Fall semester will look like as well as provide more details on how our remote delivery model will operate.

We have strived to be comprehensive in these expectations however we acknowledge that some programs may have additional requirements that will be provided by student’s respective academic schools.

We would also like to acknowledge that a remote delivery semester may provide challenges for new and returning students. We are committed to continuous improvement of the student experience throughout the semester and we will be monitoring classes and assessing student progress. Student’s will be an essential component of this assessment process and we are hopeful that students will be active contributors in the various opportunities that they will have to provide feedback and voice any concerns they may have.

There are several terms that are used throughout this document that may be new to some students. To ensure students can have a full understanding of the document we have also developed a list of definitions, available here.

Course Content

The Fall 2020 semester will be delivered remotely, and the Marine Institute Campus will be using Brightspace as the Learning Management System for course delivery. Brightspace is an online system that students will have access to as a part of their course registration. Information on how to access Brightspace can be found here (insert link) and in the technology overview found below.

Course content will be varied and depending on the course may include text, video, external web links and other resources. All instructors have been encouraged to develop their semester to include synchronous (live) and asynchronous content. Each class will continue to have a course syllabus including learning objectives and an evaluation schedule that will include traditional types of quizzes, assignments and tests. Students are responsible for becoming familiar with the course content for each course that they are registered for. It is also recommended that students become familiar with the important academic dates for the semester that can be found in the Academic Diary.

Class Schedule

Students would have noted upon registration that for the Fall semester they were provided with a class schedule through Memorial self-service. That schedule is available in self-service and will provide the foundations for the academic semester. Faculty will deliver the course content using a blend of synchronous (live) and asynchronous delivery options. Students should expect to have several live sessions each day and be prepared to treat those sessions as required class time. Faculty members will be polling students early in the term to identify time zone issues and to develop a better understanding of where students are studying from.

Attendance Policy

The Marine Institute academic calendar indicates the campus attendance policy. That policy will still be in effect for the Fall term. There is an expectation that students will attend live lectures and spend time interacting with and completing course content by logging into their courses in Brightspace.

Communications with Instructors and MI staff

Students can anticipate that instructors will be active in their courses and be present for both live sessions and in course shells for active contact with students. Faculty will also be responsive to questions and concerns students may have.

Staff across the various support areas of MI are also available and working remotely throughout the Fall semester. Students should set-up and check their MI email regularly. This will be a vital source for official communication from the institute. Returning students that have forgotten their password can reset it online here. All staff are available and will to assist students – you can find a list of key contacts here.

Student Conduct

The Marine Institute is hopeful that students will be active participants in our campus community. Part of being a part of that community is contributing in meaningful and respectful ways. Students are expected to follow the regulations of the institute governing academic conduct and plagiarism found in the Academic Calendar.

Being members of the Marine Institute community virtually this semester is different than our regular on-campus operations. However, we still require students to be respectful to their peers, instructors and staff. Behaviour is covered under Memorial’s Student Code of Conduct and students are also expected to follow these regulations throughout the Fall Semester.


In a remote semester, technology will be a key component of course delivery and communication. We have developed a student checklist that provides an overview of the various recourses available to students. We encourage students to become familiar with these resources. The checklist is available here.

Memorial University has developed general technology standards for remote/online learning across Memorial’s campuses in Fall 2020. In some cases, schools may have technology requirements that differ from those outlined below. Students will hear directly from the units where requirements differ. In the majority of circumstances, the standards outlined below are sufficient for studying in Memorial’s remote teaching and learning environment.

Available bandwidth and internet connectivity varies across Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as in locations around the world that are home to Memorial students. Memorial is committed to access and equity in a remote teaching and learning environment and is working to implement appropriate solutions to student access issues. Details will be shared with students as they become available.

Students with disabilities who are seeking academic accommodations and accessibility services are encouraged to contact Student Affairs.

Minimum technology requirements for students enrolled in remote courses:

Experience with computers

Basic level of comfort using a personal computer (file management, word processing, and printing)

Experience using modern web browsers such as Edge, Firefox, Safari or Google Chrome


It is required that you have access to a laptop or desktop computer with the following specifications:

  • Windows PC or Mac with a recent and actively supported operating system (e.g.: Windows 10, macOS 10.13+, able to run modern web tools.
  • 4 GB RAM
  • Free hard drive space to adequately run software and work on course files
  • Speakers or headset for listening to audio/video or participating in synchronous sessions
  • Microphone and webcam (headset with microphone preferred) for participating in synchronous sessions
  • Display: Full color monitor
Internet connection

Regular access to high speed internet access (e.g. DSL, Cable, Fibre) with an upload and download speed of at least 3Mbps

NOTE: If a student does not have adequate Internet access at their place of study, they should make every effort to access a location that enables a minimum level of required access to the recommended speed.