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Digital Summer Semester at the JFKI

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News from Apr 07, 2020

As a measure to contain the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), all classes at FU Berlin will be held online this semester. Please check the FU Berlin Corona website regularly for updates.

Please note that members of the Freie Universität are currently working with minimal on-site operations. The Kennedy Institute will remain closed until further notice. The secretaries and instructors are available via telephone and email.

Course Offerings at the JFKI

In order to help contain the coronavirus, courses scheduled for the upcoming summer semester at Freie Universität Berlin will be held using digital formats. This will involve significant changes in teaching formats and also represents a challenge for the entire JFKI community: students, staff and faculty members.

Faculty members, adjunct teaching staff and student assistants have been working hard to set up a revised curriculum for the summer term. The full curriculum for the summer term is available here. Most of the courses that were planned for the summer semester will be offered in digital form. This should allow students to earn the necessary credits to complete most modules. We have, however, made some changes in order to ensure that classes can be held online and that students can obtain the credits in the respective module.

  • Classes are mostly cross-listed within each department so that courses can be attended to complete the respective advanced modules A and B (BA) or A, B and C (MA)
  • Most classes have an enrollment limit of 30 participants per course. There will be a waiting list for each of these courses, if more than 30 students sign up during the registration period.
  • Classes that do not have a cap on the number of students are lectures (VL) and most of the orientation modules of the BA program

Registering for Your Courses

To facilitate your class selection, all of our instructors are providing a (preliminary) syllabus and course outline on Blackboard. Please enroll in the courses that interest you on Blackboard, familiarize yourself with the outline and then register/de-register from the classes you’d like to take on Campus Management until Thursday night (April 16).If you are not selected for some of those classes on Friday, April 17, send the instructor of the course an email (including your matriculation number) and ask to be added to the waiting list. There will be a transition period until May 7 during which slots may still become available. Please note that if you don’t want to take a specific course but remain signed up on Campus Management beyond May 7, you're effectively blocking a spot for a fellow student.

Digital Platforms and Tools for Online Teaching

The teaching mode of each course and the use of digital formats vary depending on the instructor. However, Blackboard will be the main platform through which all of the JFKI courses will be organized. While Freie Universität has introduced several new software tools to support online teaching, our instructors will organize their courses in a way that makes them as accessible as possible given the multiple constraints of IT hardware and Internet access / connection speed students might face.

Digital Code of Conduct

Please find our Code of Conduct here.

Regulations Regarding BA and MA Theses

BA and MA theses must be submitted electronically to the examination office (BA to Stephanie Pickhan: ba-nordamerika@polsoz.fu-berlin.de and MA to Christiane Meiser: christiane.meiser@fu-berlin.de, hard copies should be sent via regular mail to Ihnestr. 21, 14195 Berlin. The deadlines for BA and MA theses have been suspended at least until normal university operations resume (at the earliest from May 11, 2020).

Campus Leben Article on the Virtual Summer Semester

Campus Leben has published an article featuring statements by faculty members and staff from around the FU Berlin - including Prof. Dr. Jessica Gienow-Hecht of our history department. Click here to read (German only).

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