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NTU to log student attendance via QR codes to facilitate contact tracing for coronavirus outbreak if needed

NTU to log student attendance via QR codes to facilitate contact tracing for coronavirus outbreak if needed

File photo of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) lecture theatre. (Photo: Alif Amsyar)

SINGAPORE: Students from the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) will have to log their attendance for lessons and co-curricular activities from Wednesday (Feb 12), to facilitate contact tracing if needed, in light of the novel coronavirus outbreak. 

Students must log their attendance by scanning a QR code on their smartphones, said the circular sent out on Tuesday morning, signed by deputy president and provost Professor Ling San. 

Location-specific QR codes will be placed at the entrance of lecture theatres, seminar and tutorial rooms, laboratories and meeting rooms on campus. Scanning them will lead students to an online form where they will be required to fill in their name and mobile number, wrote Prof Ling in the circular. 

All classes with more than 50 students will be “replaced by digital forms of learning”, and this applies to all tests, quizzes and face-to-face exams, said the circular. While classes with 50 or fewer students may continue, instructors can also choose to implement e-learning. 

The National University of Singapore (NUS) and the Singapore Management University (SMU) had earlier announced e-learning measures for classes above 50 students from Monday, as well as the cancellation or postponement of large-scale events. 

Similar to NUS and SMU, NTU will also require its students to take their temperature twice a day and declare it online. 

The university also acknowledged that students who are planning events on behalf of their schools, clubs and halls of residence have asked for advice on whether the events should continue. 

“The guideline is to limit student activities and events to 50 participants. Student organisers should discuss if these events should proceed having regard to the circumstances and keep within this limit,” wrote Prof Ling.

For events involving non-NTU participants, organisers will have to get a QR code from NTU’s Office of Health, Safety and Emergency for participants to check in if the event venue does not have an existing QR code, or keep a registration list of participants with their contact details, he said. 

Temperature screening should be implemented for all participants and venues should be well ventilated with adequate hand-washing facilities, the circular read. Those who are feeling unwell or on leave of absence should not attend the event. 

“The university will continue to provide further updates and adopt additional precautionary measures, if necessary,” wrote Prof Ling. 

Singapore confirmed two more cases of the coronavirus on Monday. One is a Certis Cisco employee who served quarantine orders on two people from Wuhan and the other is a two-year-old girl who was one of the Singaporeans evacuated from Wuhan on Jan 30. 

This brings the total number of cases in Singapore to 45, with seven in critical condition. Another seven have fully recovered from the virus and have since been discharged. 

The coronavirus epidemic has killed more than 1,000 people and infected more than 40,000, most of them in mainland China.

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Source: CNA/hw(rw)


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