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Information for employees regarding the coronavirus

Last update January 8, 9:00 a.m.

Latest updates:

  • 210108 9:00 am, updated information under "risk groups".
  • 201221 3:00 pm, due to reduced opening hours at KTH Library a link has been added under "studies and exams - classrooms". Some information has been removed from "studies and exams - autumn semester 2020"- 
  • 201219 10:30 am, updated information under "working on campus and remotely", stronger recommendation to work from home until 24 January. 
  • 201215 9:00 am, updated information under "reporting sick leave".
  • 201211 2:30 pm, extended temporary change of recommendations updated under "working on campus and remotely"; Link to external helplines added to "counseling".  
  • 201209 8:30 am, link to English version of concretization regarding spring semester 2021 added to "studies and exams - spring semester 2021", link to Swedish version removed.
  • 201203 8:30 am, link to Swedish version of concretization regarding spring semester 2021 added to "studies and exams - spring semester 2021"; Information under headlines "if a student falls sick" and "thesis defence" has been updated.
  • 201130 1:00 pm, English version of information regarding the spring semester 2021 now published under "studies and exams".

Information for students  | KTH's COVID-19 management
Q&A for employees  | Q&A for managers and leaders

On this page

 Working on campus and remotely

Everyone is to work from home until 24 January - unless necessary being on campus

On 18 December, the Government and the Swedish Public Health Agency strongly recommended everyone who does not absolutely have to be at their workplace, to work from home until 24 January. A special request regarding this was addressed to public authorities. All KTH employees, in consultation with their managers, are to work from home unless their presence om campus is absolutely necessary until 24 January. Apart from this, operations continue according to previous plans and decisions. 

Studies and exams

Spring semester 2021

Please note that this information was published 30 November 2020 and replaces information previously published (26 October 2020).

During the autumn of 2020, KTH has prioritised its new students taking prerequisite qualification courses, in the first-cycle and second-cycle study programmes, and students in courses with practical elements when it comes to teaching held on campus. Due to the rising spread of COVID-19 in autumn 2020, the universities need to adapt their teaching. At KTH, this is being done by the teaching at KTH being conducted in a campus-based format with significant components of online elements.

The President of the KTH Royal Institute of Technology has 26 November 2020 made the following decision relating to the spring semester of 2021 and the remaining part of rhe autumn semester 2020. The decision (V-2020-0801) is valid until further notice, although not longer than to 28 August 2021. Changes may need to be made as a result of announcements and recommendations from the Swedish central government and other public authorities.

Note that this decision replaces the previous decision (V-2020-0724 Decision concerning the situation with the educational programmes at all levels for the spring semester 2021, 22/10/2020), which is hereby rescinded. The contents of the rescinded decision was previously published on this page, 26 October 2020, but has now been removed.

During the spring semester of 2021, KTH will conduct campus-based education with significant components of online elements. The part of the education that is located on campus will mainly consist of laboratory sessions and other practical elements that require special equipment or special facilities. Other teaching will be done online. Elements in courses may change (in relation to the approved course syllabus). The Schools are to keep logs on such changes.

The transition to more online instruction may begin immediately in the autumn semester of 2020 to gradually increase so that the instruction as of the spring semester of 2021 can be conducted as per the above. The transition in the autumn semester will be done at a pace that is realistic for the activities and in consultation between responsible functions for the educational programmes and the administrative support at the Schools. Further reprioritisations in KTH’s activities may need to be done to free up resources.

The support for online education needs to increase. The working group for education digitalisation is tasked to coordinate this, and all Schools and the University Administration will participate in the work. Reprioritisations in KTH’s activities may also need to be done due to this.

KTHB and premises on campus will be open and accessible to the students. Some restrictions on accessibility may occur. KTHB opening hours

Examinations will continue and should primarily be conducted with forms of examination other than written on-campus examinations. Written on-campus examinations can be conducted if justified for educational reasons. A decision concerning the implementation of written on-campus examinations will be made by the Vice President for Education after presentation by the Director of First and Second Cycle Education or the Director of Third Cycle Education. Due to the current situation with the pandemic, the approval of written on-campus examinations shall be subject to extensive restrictiveness. Deviation from the adopted syllabus in terms of the form of examination is allowed during the spring 2021 semester. The Schools must keep logs of which courses have an amended examination format.

Due to the current situation with the pandemic, extra examination sessions for the examinations planned to take place on campus should be organised by the Schools. The extra sessions can take place in a manner other than on campus.

In exceptional cases, a written examination with camera monitoring (such as over Zoom) can be conducted. Decisions concerning the conducting of a written camera-monitored examination are to be made by the Vice President for Education after a presentation by the Director of First and Second Cycle Education or the Director of Third Cycle Education.

Scheduled examinations in the re-examination period in December 2020 and in the examination period in January 2021 are primarily to be held according to schedule. In exceptional cases, the examination formats may be changed in consultation with the Director of First and Second Cycle Education.

The public defence of doctoral dissertations can take place on campus and online. All dissertation defences are to be made available digitally.

Exchange studies during the spring semester of 2021 are cancelled. No students will travel out and KTH will not receive any new inbound exchange students. For the spring semester of 2021, no solicitations for Minor Field Studies (MFS) will be made.

Classrooms

A range of modifications on campus have been implemented to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Please observe that the furnishing in classrooms is also adapted to minimize the spreads of infection. Furniture must not be moved around or moved to other classrooms. 

KTH Library (KTHB) has reduced opening hours until 24 January .

If a student falls sick

When it is known that a student who has participated in campus-based teaching has tested COVID-19 positive, then all course instances that the student is registered for will revert to 100% distance-based teaching for a period of two weeks. The decision to do this should however only be made after an assessment has been made by the Vice President for Education and the Head of School.

Any student who has tested positive for COVID-19 should contact the corresponding study counselor (who is bound by professional secrecy) or course leader/examiner, who in turn will report to the school’s educational administration manager. Note that KTH faculty and staff shall treat such cases as confidential.

If you feel sick

If you start to have symptoms indicating a possible COVID-19 infection it is important that you immediately go home, avoiding contact with other people.

It is important for everyone with symptoms to be tested to verify if there is an ongoing infection or not. This is not only for your own sake, but it gives the people you might have infected a possibility to also be tested. This way you contribute to lowering the infection rate. You are not obliged to have a test, but you need to be careful not to infect others, and therefore it is important to know if you are infected or not.

Call 1177 (Healthcare Guide) for advice if you have symptoms.

If you test positive for Covid-19 you need to participate in contact tracing. You will get the necessary instructions in the event of a positive test result.

If you have been in contact with or are part of a family with someone with covid-19, certain restrictions apply.

Reporting sick leave

The government has temporarily suspended the deduction from sick pay. For you as an employee, it is important to report sick leave in the self-reporting system according to usual routines. KTH will make a deduction as usual and you should then apply for compensation from the Swedish Social Insurance Agency. This applies from March 11 2020.

From March 13, 2020, the need for medical certificates during the days 1-14 during sick pay period was temporarily canceled. You, as an employee, do not need to submit a certificate from calendar day 8.

During the period March 27 to October 31, 2020, you as an employee do not have to a submit medical certificate during the first 21 calendar days of the sick period.

During the period November 1 to December 14 2020, you as an employee do not have to a submit medical certificate during the first 14 calendar days of the sick period.

During the period December 15, 2020 to January 31, 2021, you as an employee do not have to a submit medical certificate during the first 21 calendar days of the sick period.

Risk groups

The government decided in June 2020 on a new regulation aimed at facilitating for those in risk groups in three different ways. The provision applies as of the 1st of July 2020 and formally expires at the end of December 2020. The Government plans to take a decision to extend the compensation to risk groups until 30 April 2021. It will be possible to apply for compensation retroactively from 1 January 2021. A decision on the extension is expected in early February 2021. As no decision has yet been taken, you can currently apply for compensation for the period 1 July - 31 December 2020. Read more at Försäkringskassan’s website .

Sickness benefit as a preventive measure: Takes aim at employees who are at risk and has tasks that prevent them from working from home. These workers may be entitled to sickness benefit as a preventive measure. This applies on condition that the person in the risk group has of one of the diseases listed in the Regulation (see Section 2 of Regulation on certain sickness benefit for preventive purposes and certain quarantine allowance in relation to the disease covid-19). If applicable, the manager/local HR should be contacted and will from there take the employee’s medical certificate to KTH Human Resources Department Salaries. The employee seeks compensation from the Swedish Social Insurance Agency.

Increased possibility of temporary parental allowance for guardians of children who have recently been ill: For parents, the government's decision means that, under certain conditions, you can get compensation if you need to give up gainful employment in order to care for a child who has recently been seriously ill and needs to be protected from infection by the virus that causes the disease covid-19. Parents may also receive compensation if they give up gainful employment in order to avoid infecting a child referred to above. The need for protection against infection shall be demonstrated by a medical opinion. In order to be able to receive compensation in this case, the same conditions are laid down in respect of the work as in the case of compensation for persons at risk and their relatives.

The compensation to parents is paid at the same amount as for temporary parental allowance for the care of a sick child.

Quarantine allowance to relatives in the same household as a person in a risk group: This is regulated by the same regulation as mentioned above (see Section 5). This regulation quarantine allowance applies specifically to those who work in the home as a personal assistant to their loved one and at the same time to some extent gainfully work outside the residence. As a further condition, the work, which is not work as a personal assistant, cannot be carried out from home and that the employer cannot offer alternative tasks.

Counseling

Given the societal crisis we have had an abnormal time, which may have caused anxiety, stress and pressure beyond the ordinary. Do you need support to deal with concerns or to process thoughts? Employees can now receive counseling up to six times through our occupational health care Avonova. The counseling is conducted by behavioral scientists or professionals with relevant qualifications that Avonova deems appropriate. If you're a supervisor, management guidance is part of the support.

In normal instances, employees can visit Avonova three times on their own initiative and without feedback to their supervisor or HR. Visits to Avonova for other reasons than counseling are still limited to three times, before Avonova contacts the supervisor or HR for granting more visits. Meaning that now the counseling services is increased by three times.

Doctoral students with scholarships (and who are not employees) have the opportunity to contact the student health centre  if necessary:

The increase in the number of visits for counseling is valid until further notice and is a joint venture between the employer KTH and the local trade unions Saco-S, ST and Seko.

Phone number to Avonova: 08-120 125 00.

Business travel

Business trips within Sweden can be made after agreement with the nearest manager and a filed travel request. The business trip must adhere to recommendations by the Public Health Agency.

International business trips should still be avoided, but can be made in special cases after agreement with the nearest manager. The trips must adhere to recommendations by the Public Health Agency and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

Meetings and conferences

Physical meetings that gather larger groups of people (conferences, events etc.) shall be replaced with digital meetings or gatherings in smaller groups in rooms that have been suitably adapted.

Parking

From the 1:st of September 2020 a valid parking sticker is needed for free parking at KTH's (Akademiska hus/Aimo Park) parking areas at KTH Campus and in Kista and Solna. Otherwise fees apply.

Thesis defence

The defense of doctoral theses may be held on campus and remotely. As thesis defences are open to the public a maximum of eight people may gather in one room. All thesis defnces should be made available for remote participation.

See also thesis, thesis defence and qualification .

Planning, coordination and responsibilities

As an employer, KTH has a responsibility to prevent risks and deficiencies in the work environment and within this framework, take active measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Employees and students are obliged to take the personal responsibility necessary in order to prevent the spread of infection by following government bodies’ regulations, general advice and recommendations as well as the local regulations at KTH, thereby contributing to an orderly and safe work environment.

KTH has reopened for on-campus operations the autumn semester 2020. Activities and operations will be monitored and if necessarily adjusted so close physical contact and crowding are avoided. We will continously coordinate the use of common premises and general spaces where employees from several organizational units gather at the same time, and we will ensure that support and services are adapted to on-campus operations.

Actions to prevent the spread of infection and risks in the work place are executed in accordance with the delegation and distribution of work environment tasks. The responsibility for risk assessment in different aspects shall be done in each respective part of the organisation. This requires responsible leadership and management as well as responsible employeeship on all levels.

Organisational preparedness is necessary to manage new conditions according to potentially changed directives from KTH or responsible public bodies.

The Director of Personnel at KTH provides support and guidance to managers, employees and safety representatives in issues regarding work environment in connection to actions to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Continuous guidance is provided on these Intranet pages dedicated to COVID-19.

Questions and Answers

Questions and answers are now found on a separate page