CORONAVIRUS

Update: February 23, 2021

Information on exchange registrations for 2021-2022

The registration deadline for outgoing exchanges to destinations in Europe and outside Europe passed on Tuesday 1 December 2020. We are pleased to note that despite uncertainties related to the health situation and the numerous exchange cancelations that we have received in recent months, our students continue to make plans for exchanges.

The figures below detail registrations for outgoing exchanges to destinations outside Switzerland. The deadline for outgoing exchanges within Switzerland is 1 March 2021. Numbers on incoming exchanges for the Autumn 2021 semester will also become available in the Spring.

Numbers for students who have registered for an exchange in Europe or outside Europe, regardless of the semester, are:

 

2020-2021*

2021-2022**

Change

Number of students registered

674

637

-5.5%

* Registered in December 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic
** Registered in December 2020

These students were allowed to register for 3 destinations in or outside Europe; the numbers below indicate the number of destinations selected. In addition to the drop in registration numbers for destinations outside Europe, we also see a significant difference in the type of exchange selected (semester or year) with a strong increase in the number of registrations for a year-long exchange. 

 

Destinations outside Europe:

 

2020-2021

2021-2022

Change

Year

79

136

72.2%

Autumn semester

247

221

-10.5%

Spring semester

415

273

-34.2%

Total

741

630

-15%

 

Destinations in Europe:

 

2020-2021

2021-2022

Change

Year

111

161

45%

Autumn semester

440

362

-17.7%

Spring semester

562

634

12.8%

Total

1113

1157

4%

 

The process wherein exchange slots are attributed will now begin, with the first decisions communicated starting in January.

Attributions:

 

Year 21-22

Fall 21

Spring 22

Total

Destinations outside Europe

71

96

129

296

 

For the Spring 2021 semester

On 21 July 2020, we received the first exchange cancellation notice for the Spring 2021 semester. To date, more than 32 partners in 14 countries, including Australia, Japan, Canada, the United States, and Netherlands have already canceled exchanges, resulting in changes to the plans of the numerous students who were to leave for those destinations.

Certain of those students had planned to leave for the Autumn semester, and had subsequently postponed their exchanges; these new cancellations have resulted in great disappointment, with some students deciding to completely cancel exchange plans and others choosing new destinations in Europe.

At the current time, the numbers for outgoing exchanges for the Spring (SP) semester are as follows:

 

OUT

Announced SP 21

Registered SP  21

Progression

Average SP*

Destinations outside Europe

150

51

34%

118

Destinations in Europe

154

89

58%

111

Destinations in Switzerland

16

13

81%

11

General Totals

320

153

50%

240

Alt-Mob GSI**

 

26

 

 

  *The average corresponds to the average of students who left for an exchange programme in the spring semester in the last three years.
** The alternative exchange program offered by the GSI to BARI students allows them to benefit from an international experience despite the cancellation of their exchange.

 

IN

Registered SP 21

Announced in Geneva

Difference from the average

Average SP*

World

25

18

13%

187

World online**

15

   

 

Europe

94

79

161%

59

Europe online**

7

   

 

Swiss exchange programme

19

14

158%

12

General Totals

160

111

62%

258

  *The average corresponds to the average of students who went on exchange in the spring semester in the last three years. 
**Given the current health situation, a new guideline has been accepted, allowing taking online classes from home if travel to the host country is not possible. This figure also includes the 16 exchange students participating in GSI's alt-mob program.

The increase is due to the large number of cancellations of non-European exchanges and the postponement of exchanges to 2021.

 

For the Autumn 2020 semester

Starting on 9 April 2020, we received numerous exchange cancellation notices from our partners for the Autumn semester. More than 65 universities in 23 countries, including Australia, Canada, China, the United States, and Japan, sent messages announcing cancellations, generally reciprocal. Certain European partners, mostly in the United Kingdom, have continued to accept our students even though their students were not permitted to leave on exchanges.

At the current time, the numbers for exchanges for the Autumn (AU) semester are as follows:

 

Outgoing exchange

 OUT

Registered SA 20

Departure SA 20

Departure rate

Average SA*

Destinations outside Europe

158

9

6%

152

Destinations in Europe

192

97

51%

138

Destinations in Switzerland

50

42

84%

41

Total 

400

148

37%

331

 *The average corresponds to the average of students who left for an exchange programme in the fall semester in the last three years.

Demand for an exchange has not been affected (approx. +20%). On the other hand, only 37% were able to be realized. Exchange oustide Europe is particularly affected.

Incoming exchanges

IN

Anounced SA 20

Registered SA 20

Arrival rate

Still in Geneva**

Average SA*

Outside Europe

65

29

45%

24

155

Europe

172

112

65%

95

185

Swiss exchange programme

24

25

104%

15

21

General Totals

261

166 64%

134

361

* The average corresponds to the average number of students who came to an exchange in the fall semester over the last three years.
**When questioned in December 2020, the vast majority of INcoming students confirmed that they were still in Geneva


 IN exchange enrolments are down 53% from the average.

 

For the Spring 2020 Semester

The widespread confinement this Spring caused courses to be moved online, and generated anxiety for students who were obliged to decide very rapidly if they wished to remain at their exchange destinations or if it would be safer to return home. Additionally, certain partners with semesters starting later than ours, for example in Germany and Japan, canceled outgoing exchanges for the Spring semester.

Contacted starting 18 March, 80% of the approximately 700 students registered for exchanges at that time (around 350 incoming and 350 outgoing) elected to maintain their exchanges. Of these 560 students, an early return was elected by 55% of the outgoing students and 65% of the incoming students.

 

 

Organization of the office

The academic exchange office continues to receive students every day from 10:00 to 12:30 at MR050.

If you are looking for a specific manager, please refer to the schedule below

Programme

Responsable

   Monday   

   Tuesday   

 Wednesday  

   Thursday     

 Friday  

IN - World

Mrs Claire Giordano       x

x

Mobilité suisse

Mrs Marisol Pedrosa

     

x

Internships (european students)

Mrs Marisol Pedrosa

x

     

x

OUT - World

Mrs Vera Sandoval    

x

   

OUT - Europe

Mrs Tanya Schaetzle  

x

     

The information desk is closed; you can reach Isabelle De Vinck by email guichetmobilite(at)unige.ch or by phone 022 379 80 86, everday except Wednesday from 10h to 13h


Informations For incoming Students

Concerning entry into Switzerland: if your government permits it and if you meet entry requirements (including obtaining a visa if necessary), it is possible to enter Switzerland. More information is available here: Entry by third-country citizens (non-EU/EFTA citizens) for education or training courses.

There are two possible scenarios on your arrival:

  1. You are arriving from a country that is not included on the list of countries and areas subject to quarantine, and in that case you will need to abide by the applicable hygiene and social distancing rules;
  2. You are arriving from a country included on the Swiss government’s list and you must quarantine for 10 days. The list of countries and regions, and other details on quarantine, are available on the Swiss government’s website ; as the list is frequently updated, you should check it regularly. Please bear in mind the following points:
  • The trip from your arrival point to your quarantine area can be made via public transport, while wearing a protective face mask;
  • You must wear a mask at all times, even in your residence, unless you live alone;
  • You have a period of two days in which to announce your arrival to the Cantonal health service;
  • If you experience symptoms of COVID-19 during quarantine, it is important to immediately inform the competent Cantonal authorities. They will inform you of what you should do, for example being tested.
  • All costs related to quarantine and the organization thereof are borne by you; you will find information here and here regarding food delivery services.

Reminder: wearing a mask is mandatory in university buildings. 

Spring Semester 2021

  •  Welcome Days will be online on Friday, February 19;
  •  Until at the earliest 1 April 2021, which is the date the Easter holiday begins, all teaching will remain online, except for classes requiring specific UNIGE equipment, premises or resources;
  • Libraries and cafeterias remain accessible;
  •  Your academic exchange shall also be recognized if you take your classes online, regardless of your place of residence, under the following conditions:
    1. entry into Switzerland, or exit from your country, is impossible
    2. your faculty accepts this new exchange modality, approves the courses selected, and agrees to award the credits for an exchange

    No scholarship shall be paid out if courses are taken online from the student’s home country.

     

Information For outgoing students

Reminder: exchanges are validated when students go to their destination, regardless of the format of courses offered by the partner university. Given the current situation, a new regulation has been adopted by the rectorate:

The academic exchange shall also be recognized when the courses at the partner institution are taken online, regardless of the place of residence under the following conditions, valid for both incoming and outgoing exchanges:

  1. entry into the country, or exit from the country, is impossible
  2. the Faculty accepts this new exchange modality, approves the courses selected, and agrees to award the full amount of credits for an exchange as stipulated in the plan of study, and confirms that the exchange is indispensable for the student in question
  3. the partner offers online courses and accepts the application.

No scholarship shall be paid out if courses are taken online from the student’s home country.

Students wishing to benefit from this format must prove our service that conditions 1 and 2 are met.

Please note that students are required to hold accident and health insurance policies as well as repatriation insurance; these policies should be valid throughout the exchange period. Additionally, we recommend purchasing cancellation insurance when buying airplane tickets.

Before traveling to another country, you are strongly advised to seek information from the embassies or consulates for your destination country. In all cases, it is absolutely essential to carefully follow rules of hygiene and behavior recommended by the Federal and Cantonal health authorities. Members of the university community must also be aware of UNIGE’s policy regarding risk areas.


Personal travel

UNIGE encourage members of its community to avoid unnecessary travel outside Switzerland, in accordance with recommendations from the Federal Office of Public Health.