Preparing for Fall 2021
July 30, 2021
In preparing for a return to campus in Fall 2021, KPU is, as always, following the guidance of the B.C. Public Health Office and the COVID-19 Return-to-Campus Guidelines, which were developed with lots of input from institutions across B.C.
Things are still in flux with respect to infection and immunization rates, so we will continue to review all new information from provincial and federal agencies, and we will respond to any changes to public health guidelines accordingly. These changes could happen with short notice and may vary between campuses, so check back regularly if you can.
For now, there is a lot of information to share about our current plan as we prepare for the province to move to the next step of the B.C. Restart Plan. We have captured much of that information in a chart accompanying this message.
Currently, B.C. is in Step 3 of its restart plan.
- masks are recommended in indoor public places for all people 12 and older who are not yet fully vaccinated,
- increased social contact is allowed,
- indoor gatherings and meetings can be held for up to 50 people,
- all B.C. workplaces will be transitioning from COVID-19 safety plans to a communicable disease safety plan.
During Step 3, KPU has moved from requiring masks be worn on campus to strongly recommending masks for everyone. While physical distancing is still recommended, we realize it might not always be possible as more employees return to campus to prepare the university for greater reopening in the fall.
KPU has actually maintained several Step 2 measures throughout the summer, just to be sure. These include the limited use of meeting rooms, and still requiring employees to complete a campus visit form and the KPU health check when attending campus.
So, on September 7, we move to Step 4 of the Restart Plan, which will mean:
- masks become a personal choice,
- normal in-person gatherings and social contact will be permitted,
- workplaces will fully reopen and follow general communicable disease prevention guidance.
In line with the public health guidance for Step 4 and our objective of moving to a “New KPU”, we are planning on moving to a blended form of teaching, learning and working where operationally feasible and safe.
That means wearing masks at KPU will become a personal choice, but we ask you to remember that we each have our own comfort levels and to be respectful in our conversations when someone has a different mask preference.
For Step 4, campus visit forms and KPU’s daily health checks will no longer be required. But we do ask you to continue to monitor your health daily with the B.C. Government’s self-assessment tool and to not attend campus when feeling ill or experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms.
Normal social contact will resume and meeting rooms will be open in the Fall semester, with online booking of meeting rooms opening in early August. Events will be permitted in outdoor bookable spaces and in bookable meeting rooms to their allowed capacity. However, the board room and large indoor spaces will have limited access and capacity until January 2022 for logistical and safety reasons. We want to focus on instruction and service for students first of all. So, for example, Senate and Board meetings and Convocation will be virtual this Fall.
KPU’s COVID-19 plans will be replaced by general communicable disease plans and we will be sharing more details with you in the coming weeks. But we will be maintaining enhanced cleaning protocols through Fall 2021 to reduce the risk of all respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19.
Travel for students and employees on KPU business will remain restricted for the time being, but we will provide updates through the 2021-22 academic year as provincial and federal guidance evolves.
We understand that it will take time to adjust after the restrictions we have experienced over the past 18 months. But we have all developed a range of tools to help minimize the risks of transmission of any respiratory disease, including the wearing of masks, physical distancing and hand hygiene.
Employees concerned about working on campus can speak to their manager and can apply to HR for a medical accommodation if needed. They can book meeting rooms or meet outside if they feel the office or workspace is too small for a meeting. Meetings can also continue to be held virtually, and all meetings going forward should offer a virtual component where possible to be respectful of those working remotely.
While all existing COVID-19 signage will be removed, standard communicable disease signs will be put up where appropriate. Sanitation stations will remain in place at major entry points to reduce the spread of all respiratory disease.
Authorized vaccines have proven to be highly effective at reducing serious outcomes from the COVID-19 virus and KPU continues to encourage all those who can get vaccinated to do so. Vancouver Coastal Health and Fraser Health authorities are currently running vaccination clinics at our Richmond and Langley campuses respectively. We are working with the health authorities to try to bring additional vaccination opportunities to our campuses in the Fall and we hope to be able to share more details with you in the coming weeks.
Even with the federal government’s planned change to border restrictions, it is important to remember that foreign nationals and international students will need to satisfy the Canadian Border Services Agency requirement that they are fully vaccinated. Those who cannot will need to quarantine and take mandatory COVID-19 tests.
The safety of our students and employees is our number one priority and we will continue to review new provincial, federal and the post-secondary sector guidance on COVID-19 as it is released, respond when action is required, and keep you informed of changes in our approach.
Alan Davis, PhD
President and Vice Chancellor
Fall 2021 FAQs
Will classes be online, blended/hybrid or in-person?
Our fall course offerings will include a variety of in-person and online classes, as well as classes being offered in a blended or partially online format.
How do I know if a course is being offered online, blended/hybrid or in-person?
Course delivery format is noted in the timetable which will be released on June 25 so that you are able to view the various options when you browse classes and register.
Will any classes be offered both online and in-person?
Yes. KPU will offer a number of courses in a blended, or partially online format that include both on-campus, in-person and online delivery of the curriculum. Courses requiring students to be on-campus for in-person delivery will be noted in the timetable so you are aware of this requirement when you register.
If I have to self-isolate/quarantine during the semester, will I be able to switch from in-person to online? Once I'm well, can I switch back to in-person?
The requirements and format for each class may differ. Be sure to speak to your instructor if you find yourself in a situation that may impact your ability to meet the requirements of the course.
If I have to self-isolate/quarantine during the semester how will this impact my assignments, test, and grade for that course?
The requirements for each class differ. Be sure to speak to your instructor if you find yourself in a situation that may impact your ability to meet the requirements of the course.
Will in-person class sizes decrease? If so, will this impact the number of sections available for course registration?
If British Columbia’s restart plan proceeds as scheduled, KPU anticipates returning to class sizes similar to those seen prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. The university does not expect to see an impact on the number of sections available.
If I have an in-person class, when will classes start?
The first day of classes is September 7. On-campus requirements are noted in the timetable and vary depending on the section(s) you register in. You may not hear from your instructor until the first day of class as faculty continue to finalize their course design. You will receive greater details from your instructors about your course delivery format – but please note this may not be until the first day of classes. For courses with on campus requirements, your instructor will confirm for you the specific times during the term when you will be expected to be on campus.
I want to start planning my fall schedule. When will the course timetable be released? When will I be able to register for courses?
The timetable which will be released on June 25. Registration opens July 12. Students will be notified by email with the date and time on which they will be eligible to register and should ensure they are checking their KPU email often.
Is it too late to pay my confirmation deposit for Fall 2021?
It’s not too late! Applicants are encouraged to pay their confirmation deposit as soon as possible to be assigned the best possible registration time.
Will Convocation be in person if we are back on campus? When will convocation be in person again?
Due to the ongoing restrictions on large gatherings as part of British Columbia’s COVID-19 response, KPU is arranging for virtual Spring and Fall 2021 Convocation ceremonies. These are unprecedented times and as we continue to heed the advice of our public health officials, we do not know when we will once again be gathering together indoors in large numbers. Further Convocation details and FAQs are available at kpu.ca/convocation
How do I pay my tuition fee? Can I pay on campus? How much do I need to pay before starting my classes at KPU?
Please note we are unable to process mailed payments, including cheques. Students can confirm successful receipt of payment in their Online Self-Service (OSS) account under: Student Menu → Student Accounts → View Tuition Fees.
The fee payment deadline is published on the Dates & Deadlines webpage for each term. Please ensure your tuition and fees for the term (including Session 2 courses) are paid by the posted deadline to avoid being assessed late payment fees.
For additional information visit our Fee Deadlines and Refunds webpage.
Will orientation be in-person or online?
Due to the ongoing restrictions on large gatherings as part of B.C.’s COVID-19 response, KPU is planning for Fall 2021 orientation activities to be primarily online.
What can I expect from an online orientation?
Online orientation will consist of two weeks of online events and activities to set students up for success. For Fall 2021, there will be:
- A virtual orientation livestream on August 31 from 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. or 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. PT.
- An online orientation module that students can complete at their own pace. Every student who completes the module by 11:59 p.m. PT on September 24 will be entered to win up to $500 in tuition.
- First-Year Festival, two weeks of flexible programming featuring workshops and activities that go beyond the basics. We will cover academic and study skills, student life and campus activities, and strategies for getting the most out of your university experience.
KPU will be offering welcome boxes to our newest students for Fall 2021. Welcome boxes will be available for on-campus pick-up and mailed to those who are continuing to study remotely for the fall. Find out more at kpu.ca/orientation.
I am moving to British Columbia from another Canadian province or territory. What should I be doing for the upcoming Fall 2021 semester? Do I have to quarantine?
If you are traveling to B.C. from another province or territory for essential reasons you do not need to self-quarantine, however, you must follow all the province-wide restrictions.
Can I visit a KPU bookstore to get my textbooks?
KPU is planning to maintain online purchasing options while reopening bookstores for the Fall semester.
The Surrey and Tech campus bookstores are currently open daily, with curbside book collection available at Surrey.
From August 16, the Surrey bookstore will be open Monday to Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Tech bookstore will be open 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and the Richmond and Langley stores will be open Monday to Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Where do I find the booklist for my classes?
For remote learning classes, do I have to buy hard copies of my textbooks, or can I purchase e-texts?
Any specific questions regarding textbooks should be directed to your instructor. They are the ones assigning you the books and determine what is needed.
What library resources are going to be available? Will I be able to study on campus in the library?
On July 12, the library will re-open with in-person access to its bookshelves, common area study tables, and appointments will no longer be needed for service at library service desks. The library is now accepting requests to book equipment and course reserves for the fall semester, and librarians will be available for in-person reference assistance for the Fall 2021 semester. Study rooms remain unavailable until the further notice.
Visit the library web page for more information.
Can I get my KPU Card at the library?
Creating your KPU Card begins online using the KPU Card Submission Form. Once your request is processed, you will be notified by email when your card is ready to be picked up. Government-issued photo ID is required to pick up your KPU Card.
Will the Learning Centre be open? Will I be able to book in-person tutoring appointments?
Learning Centres will be open with in-person tutoring available starting September 1. We will still have online options available for those learning remotely. Learning Strategists will also be able to help you to organize your online and face-to-face learning.
Will I have to pay for parking for Fall 2021?
Yes. KPU paid parking returns September 1, 2021.
How do I pay for parking? Or buy a monthly, semester or annual parking permit?
KPU is moving to an app called hangTag for hourly and daily parking, and the hangTag website for weekly, monthly, semester and annual parking needs. Registration for the hangTag website opens August 1, 2021. The hangTag app is available on iOS and Android.
The hangTag app allows students, employees and visitors to pay from anywhere using their phone and extend parking periods without returning to a meter. Depending on your need, you can pay by the hour, day, week, month, semester or year, with annual registration lasting for one year from the date of purchase.
Although it is called hangTag, the new system removes the need to display a parking permit in your car because parking attendants will check licence plates electronically in the registered database. The hangTag app and the hangTag website allow multiple licence plates to be registered in the system, although you can only bring one at a time to campus. In addition to the hangTag app and the hangTag website, pay parking meters will still be available on campus for hourly and daily parking needs.
If you have further questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
International Students FAQs
Visit KPU International for more information for international students travelling to Canada and additional international student FAQs that look beyond returning to campus.
Are international students allowed into Canada? If so, should I start to book flight tickets? Are there restrictions on how early I can arrive?
International students are permitted to travel to Canada. However, it is important to check the latest travel restrictions for your region prior to booking any flights or accommodations.
To be eligible to enter Canada, international students must meet both of the following requirements:
- You must have a valid study permit or a letter of introduction that shows you were approved for a study permit.
- You must be attending a designated learning institution (DLI) with a COVID-19 readiness plan approved by its province or territory.
- As a student at KPU, you meet this requirement. Kwantlen Polytechnic University is on the list of DLIs with approved COVID-19 readiness plans
When planning your arrival date, you should give yourself enough time before school starts, to complete the mandatory COVID-19 requirements of Canada and the province of British Columbia, as well as meeting the requirements in KPU’s COVID-19 readiness plan. However, if you arrive earlier than 21 days prior to course start, you may be refused entry by the Border Services Officer. Please make sure you contact authorities in the country you are leaving for any departure restrictions.
I live in a region currently facing a travel ban to Canada because of variants of concern. What should I be doing for the upcoming Fall 2021 semester if some/all of my classes are in-person (ex. lecture, lab)?
KPU fall course offerings will include a variety of in-person and online classes, as well as classes being offered in a blended or partially online format. Course delivery format is noted in the timetable, which will be released on June 25, so that you are able to view the various options when you browse classes and register. If you are unable to travel to Canada for the upcoming semester, we recommend working with a KPU International Advisor to ensure you are taking courses that are offered online only.
I am moving to BC from outside of Canada for Fall 2021. What do I need to know about travel and quarantine?
Visit the Information for International Students Travelling to Canada webpage for a step-by-step process on how to prepare for your travel and quarantine (if needed) to Canada. You may or may not need to quarantine depending on your vaccination status.
If you are fully vaccinated for COVID-19
Starting July 5, there are quarantine exemptions for fully vaccinated travellers who meet specific conditions and are eligible to enter Canada. Current travel restrictions still apply. Learn more.
Please note: To be considered fully vaccinated, a traveller must have received the full series of a vaccine — or combination of vaccines — accepted by the Government of Canada at least 14 days prior to entering Canada. Currently, those vaccines are manufactured by Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson). Travellers can receive their vaccine in any country, and must provide documentation supporting their vaccination in English, French or with a certified translation.
If you are not fully vaccinated for COVID-19 (or you are fully vaccinated but with a vaccine not approved by Health Canada)
You will need to quarantine for 14 days. As a traveller, you must demonstrate that you have an adequate plan for quarantine. You are expected to make plans, within your own means, before travelling to Canada. Foreign nationals who do not have an adequate plan may be denied entry into Canada. Upon arrival, you will need to stay in the government-authorized accommodation for three nights while awaiting the results of the COVID-19 molecular test taken at the port of entry. Once you have received a negative test, you will then be able to relocate to your planned place of quarantine to complete the remainder of your 14-day quarantine.
Does KPU offer support for students for quarantine planning?
KPU offers many supports that can be found on the Information for International Students Travelling to Canada webpage.
If I am studying from outside of Canada, should I apply for a study permit?
Yes. We highly recommend you apply for a study permit as soon as possible, even if you are studying from outside of Canada. Learn more about applying for your study permit.
What if I do not get a visa approval or/and study permit to come and study in Canada? How will that impact all the studies I have done as a KPU student, in my home country so far OR how will that impact my admission to KPU?
International students without a valid study permit cannot study within Canada if their studies are longer than six months. However, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is currently allowing students who have applied for a study permit to study from their home country and have the time counted toward their post graduate work permit (PGWP) eligibility (applicable until Dec 31, 2021). Please note that if you choose to begin your studies without a study permit approval and your study permit is later denied, tuition fees are non-refundable.
Will there be an online orientation for international students?
In addition to the virtual orientation livestream (August 31, 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. or 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. PT), international students are requested to attend the live virtual international orientation (August 30 from 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. PT or August 31 from 8 p.m. – 9:30 a.m. PT). This event will provide additional information specific to supports and services related to transitioning and studying as an international student.
KPU will provide further updates here as more details become available.
Faculty and Staff
On March 8, 2021, B.C.'s Provincial Health Officer (PHO) advised that all public post-secondary institutions were able to plan for a full return to on-campus teaching, learning and research in September 2021. This decision was supported by the PHO's confidence in mass immunization, updated health and safety protocols and the consistent review and re-calibration of multi-layered institutional safety plans.
For a September return, KPU is proceeding on the basis of provincial forecasts that transmission rates will be low, and that all adults in B.C. will have had the opportunity to receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
KPU will continue to embrace the innovations developed during the pandemic for both remote and blended learning and working opportunities, and utilize the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to creatively innovate a new future for KPU.
Similar to students, many employees have expressed interest in more flexible and blended ways of working post-pandemic. KPU will continue to put the interests of students first. On-campus activity will initially be limited to those who directly impact student experience and those who support stakeholders that directly impact student experience.
At this time, KPU continues to tightly limit the number of people working on campus in order to remain compliant with all public health orders and WorkSafe BC regulations. Visit KPU's Safety Plans for more information. Some teaching is taking place on campus in a small number of programs where in-person teaching education is an essential part of the curriculum.
Students attending campus at KPU should complete a daily self-assessment prior to their arrival on campus. Completing the confidential B.C. COVID-19 Self-Assessment tool is the best way to perform this check as it aligns with the latest guidance from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control. See KPU’s student self-assessment page for more information.
Employees who are working on campus must complete KPU's employee online self-assessment form before starting their shifts. If for any reason you are unable to access the online tool, please call Security to confirm that you have met the requirements on this WorkSafe BC poster prior to beginning your shift.
All contractors working on campus will still be required to check-in with Security when they arrive on campus each day to confirm that they have met the requirements listed on this WorkSafe BC poster.
For more information on our current COVID-19 protocols and safety plans, please visit our COVID-19 Coronavirus Information and Response page.
Vaccines and Other Preventative Measures
If you have any of the symptoms or potential exposures listed on the poster, do not come to campus. Please consider calling 8-1-1 or contacting your health-care provider for advice. Any employee or contractor who refuses to take part in the health check will not be allowed to enter the workplace.
Now British Columbia has moved to Step 3 of the B.C. Restart Plan, KPU recommends anyone working, studying or visiting campus to wear a mask through the Summer semester.
KPU Resources and Information
Safety plans have been created for faculties, departments and projects at the university
KPU is committed to supporting applicants and newly admitted students during the pandemic
Assessment & Testing Services is offering online and on-campus admissions plus select distance education exams
KPU's athletic and recreation facilities are closed but some classes are being held online
Course materials can be ordered online, with home shipping or curb-side pick up at KPU Surrey
Brew Lab beer sales have changed as a result of COVID-19
Campus shuttles are operating with reduced capacity to allow social distancing
KPU has increased cleaning at all campuses with a particular focus on cleaning touch points
Most classes are being delivered online. A limited number of courses follow a blended format
KPU Teaching and Learning has developed resources to help instructors teach online
Course safety plans have been created for classes where in-person teaching is essential
Human Resources has a library of resources for employees
All in-person KPU events have beeen cancelled until further notice
KPU First Aid stations remain open with appropriate COVID protocols in place
Food and drink outlets operating at KPU have to apply provincial guidance
Indigenous Services is providing support to students online
Building access has been altered and safety measures installed where necessary
KPU International has answers for international students to many frequently asked questions
All tutoring and learning strategist appointments are now online
KPU librarians are offering assistance remotely. Libraries are open with reduced hours and capacity
Mental health support is available to KPU students 24/7 through My SSP
KPU's Employee and Family Assistance Program is available for employees who need support
KPU's Multi-Faith chaplains are providing online support
Outdoor campus spaces are open, but campus visits are not encouraged at this time
Parking charges have been eliminated while KPU is primarily teaching remotely
Unless expressly exempt, face-to-face data collection must be socially distanced or suspended until human contact is allowed
PPE should be worn where physical distancing cannot be maintained