How coronavirus affects the University

This article summarises the most important principles and guidelines, and it will be updated on a continuous basis. Updated on 15 February, 2021.

The development of the coronavirus epidemic will be followed continuously, and the instructions will be updated if necessary. We will prepare for possible sudden changes in the situation during the academic year, in which case we will react quickly and make updates on the university’s coronavirus guidelines. 

Important links

Most recents corona related news article

University’s on-call coronavirus coordinator

If you receive a positive test result in a coronavirus test, inform the university’s on-call coronavirus coordinator without delay:

  • call the number 02 9447 4100 (no text-messages)

Uniarts Helsinki’s coronavirus-related guidelines

Restrictions concerning artistic activities, libraries and leisure-time activities do not concern Uniarts Helsinki’s units in Seinäjoki and Kuopio unless the hospital districts where they are located have entered the spreading stage of the pandemic.

Use of facilities 

Entrance doors to the university’s facilities will stay closed until 9 May 2021, and access is possible only with a personal access key.

During this time of stricter COVID-19 guidelines, our facilities are open only for carrying out studies, work and related support functions connected to the university’s education, research and artistic activities. Outside visitors who are taking part in the aforementioned activities must be met up with at the entrance of the building.

People in the facilities should avoid staying in the facilities without a valid reason. As a rule, everyone uses a face mask in the university’s facilities unless they have a health-related reason that prevents it. Everyone is expected to take care of the university’s safety guidelines and keep a safe distance to each other when visiting the facilities. 


Students can study in the university facilities as long as they follow the safety guidelines.

Students who fall into high-risk groups must be ensured the possibility to complete studies remotely, when possible. The aim is to arrange teaching remotely also if a student’s close family member is at higher risk from coronavirus and the student feels that they cannot participate in contact teaching because of it. The decision on these kinds of arrangements is made by the head of the unit in charge of organising teaching (dean or the academic director of the Open Campus) or a person authorised by the head of the unit.   


In principle, teaching is organised completely remotely until 9 May 2021.

Teaching that is impossible or unreasonably difficult to organise remotely in order to complete the study attainment will be arranged on campus in a group of max 10 people. Arranging contact teaching requires a permission from the head of the department, degree programme or subject area in question.

Support services are provided only for tasks that are connected with studies, e.g. performance examinations.

Individual practice sessions and independent artistic work related to studies are allowed in the university’s facilities.

Teachers will be ensured the possibility to teach remotely in situations where this is possible when considering the proper management of the job duties in question. Supervisors consider the learning objectives, nature of the job and safety guidelines and decide whether remote teaching is possible. 

Other work 

Other work will continue mostly remotely until 31 July, 2021.

The recommendation is that staff members working in the University Services have the possibility to work remotely some part of the week when this is possible considering the proper management of job duties. 

Uniarts Helsinki’s meetings will be organised remotely.

If an employee is not able to work in the university facilities, the work is performed completely remotely. Supervisors consider the nature of the job and the university’s guidelines and decide whether remote work is possible. Teams are encouraged to discuss work arrangements, duties and objectives regarding remote work so that a smooth and well-planned management of job duties is possible also if the coronavirus situation changes.   

When an employee works remotely, their duties may temporarily differ from their usual job duties. Employees discuss changes to the job duties with their supervisors. If it is not possible to perform the work remotely, and there are no alternative work duties that can be assigned, the HR team should be contacted concerning the matter.  

Artistic activities and invitational guests

Artistic activities in Sibelius Academy and Theatre Academy will continue without outside people in the audience until 9 May.

A maximum of 10 persons can be present in the performance halls at a time, and this number includes the members of examination boards, examiners and required technical staff. If the total number of people in the event is over 10 people, the decision on the organising of the event is made by the academy dean, as has been the case so far, too.

At the Academy of Fine Arts, exhibition activities continue in accordance with the existing practices until 9 May 2021: a maximum of five persons at a time can visit the galleries’ exhibitions.

Artistic activities entail also artistic events that are related to teaching and research.


Research will be carried out mostly remotely until 31 July, 2021.

Research personnel will be ensured the possibility to work in the university facilities in situations where this is necessary when considering the proper management of the job duties in question. Supervisors consider the nature of the job and the university’s guidelines when making decisions on remote work. 

It is recommended that research conferences and symposiums are organised remotely. Public defences of doctoral dissertations and other thesis examinations can be arranged remotely or on campus, as long as the safety regulations are followed. 

Visits and travels 

Granting of travel and visitor permissions has been suspended until 14 March. This suspension concerns both domestic and international work-related travelling. However, trips to the university’s facilities in Kuopio and Seinäjoki are still allowed for the personnel.

Exchanges agreed for the spring term are carried out if the destination school or the student does not cancel the exchange.

Leisure-time activities

Leisure-time activities of both individuals and groups in Uniarts Helsinki’s facilities will stay suspended until 9 May 2021. Study-related practice is not considered leisure-time activities. 

Organising joint recreational events in the university facilities

The preparedness team has decided that due to the ongoing coronavirus situation, using Uniarts Helsinki’s facilities for student events or other recreational events is not allowed.

We also recommend that staff and students refrain from meeting one another in joint recreational events indoors outside of the university’s facilities.

Face masks

It is strongly recommended that a mask is worn whenever operating in the university facilities.

Preparedness for changes 

Uniarts Helsinki prepares for possible changes in the coronavirus situation by maintaining its preparedness to switch over to exclusively remote studies and work during the academic year. If necessary, the rector may call upon the university’s preparedness team to support decision-making in related matters. 

Preparedness team and coronavirus team

In accordance with its preparedness plan, Uniarts Helsinki has a preparedness team led by Rector Kaarlo Hildén.   

To keep the university updated on matters involving the coronavirus, its members also include Vice Rector Lauri Väkevä, Director of Communications and External Relations Eveliina Olsson, Senior Head of Academic Affairs Sanna Kotajärvi-Söderholm, Senior Facilities Manager Antti Halm, Service and Personnel Manager Mikael Vänttinen and Vice Rector Jaana Erkkilä-Hill.

The secretary of the team is Occupational Health and Safety Manager Jyri Pulkkinen, who can also give further information on how to prepare for the coronavirus outbreak: jyri.pulkkinen@uniarts.fi050-5722058  

By decision of the Rector, Uniarts Helsinki has set up a new coronavirus team tasked with compiling hands-on coronavirus-related instructions that affect the university’s daily operations and artistic activities. The team is also responsible for making decisions on practical arrangements during the coronavirus epidemic. 

The team’s members are Senior Head of Academic Affairs Sanna Kotajärvi-Söderholm, Technical Manager and Vice Occupational Health and Safety Manager Marko Myöhänen, Technical Manager and Occupational Health and Safety Manager Jyri Pulkkinen, Facilities Manager Matti Rautio, Service and Personnel Manager Mikael Vänttinen, and Communications Planner Mirva Niemi. The team’s work is steered by the university’s emergency preparedness team.

What to do if you suspect that you have been infected  

When you have symptoms of a flu, stay at home immediately, because the infection risk is highest during the first 2-3 days, when it is important to avoid contacts with other people and to take care of good hand and coughing hygiene. 

The THL website lists coughing, sore throat, fever, shortness of breath, muscle pain and headache as symptoms of a coronavirus infection.