Five ways we’re preparing for the next academic year

At dBs music we hope to be open again soon. Although we do not know what the situation in the UK will look like in September, we are currently doing everything in our power to facilitate a return to campus at the start of the next academic year.

Of course, the health and safety of our students, tutors and staff is our number one priority, so we’ve been working on a range of measures to help us welcome you back safely. Whilst we await official guidance, here are five ways we are preparing to resume life at dBs whilst safeguarding the wellbeing of our entire community. 

1. Extra cleaning and safety precautions

As you might expect, we’ll be doing lots of extra cleaning, scrubbing and sterilising to make our campuses safe places to study and work. As well as regularly disinfecting key contact points (toilets, door handles, mice, keyboards etc.) we’ll be carefully controlling equipment use to prevent cross-contamination. We’re considering everything from replacing pop shields on mics after every use to the use of UV lights to sterilise synths. Hand sanitiser and safety wipe stations have been installed in all workspaces for use before and after every session.

2. Adapting teaching to social distancing

We are exploring a range of measures to facilitate the resumption of in-person teaching whilst observing the rules of social distancing. Compared to other universities, we already teach in relatively small groups, but we will be reviewing class sizes where necessary and implementing physical distancing measures such as providing seating that’s at least 2m apart. To manage student numbers within our centres, we will also be staggering arrivals, departures and break times. In line with this, we are exploring the possibility of setting up an order and delivery service in our Bristol café.

3. Moving course content online

To ensure students continue to receive their full number of teaching hours whilst minimising risk, it is possible that some aspects of learning will continue online in September. For example, although large lectures only account for a small number of teaching hours at dBs, these may proceed virtually if it is not feasible to break into smaller groups or sit everyone 2m apart. Online content may also be used to complement practical sessions as well as to provide for at-risk students who are unable to come into our centres. To facilitate all of this we will increase the level of web support available to our students, whilst ensuring that all online content is compatible with a range of platforms and softwares. We are also exploring a number of technologies to help make our online content as engaging and interactive as possible.

4. Organising a virtual Freshers’ Week (until we can celebrate properly!)

We understand that for many students, the social aspect of university is just as important as the academic one. Unfortunately, it is highly unlikely that our regular Freshers’ Week events will be able to go ahead as normal. However, it may be possible for certain activities to take place in smaller groups and we will also be organising a variety of online activities to help you settle in and socialise with your peers. To make sure nobody misses out, we are also exploring the possibility of holding our traditional Freshers’ Week celebrations later in the academic year.

5. Reviewing how we provide access to facilities

We believe that gaining hands-on practical experience is an essential part of your education with us. That’s why we’re exploring a range of measures to ensure access to our state-of-the-art facilities is not compromised. These include the introduction of set and structured booking times for our practice rooms and studios as well as a potential increase in our centre opening hours. We will also be organising for health and safety reports to be completed before any of our facilities are booked out. 

Whilst we cannot claim to have all the answers at this point, please be assured that we are dedicated to maintaining an exceptional student experience, whatever position we find ourselves in September. If you would like to find out more, please feel free to contact a member of our admissions team or read out common COVID-19 related questions.

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