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Guidelines for the implementation of the Bavarian Infection Protection Measures Ordinance at Bavarian universities

Please note: These guidelines are continuously updated here. On this page you will find a translation of the
​Version from 22.06.2020.

1. Introduction

In accordance with the Bavarian Infection Protection Measures Ordinance (BayIfSMV) in its currently applicable version, no face-to-face courses are to be held at all Bavarian universities for the time being.

The holding of examinations and certain practical courses, the opening of libraries, and the conducting of small seminars to complement online courses will be permitted under strict conditions on infection protection.

The measures described below pursue the goal of protecting the members of universities by interrupting chains of infection, preserving the health of students and employees when conducting examinations and practical courses, and contributing to the containment of the pandemic.

These guidelines shall apply subject to more stringent regulations from a higher authority. They describe a minimum standard to be implemented by the universities on their own responsibility, and in accordance with the specific requirements of their faculties and other scientific and non-scientific institutions - if necessary, supplemented by further measures.

Reference is made to the SARS-CoV-2 occupational safety standard of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs dated 16.04.2020.

2. Public spaces on University premises

The relevant infection protection regulations for restricting contact in public areas also apply to public areas on the University premises.

3. Ban on events, assembly, and gatherings 

a) Events, assembly, and gatherings are prohibited state-wide. This prohibition covers events, assembly, and gatherings at universities, irrespective of the number of participants, in particular festivals, parties, concerts, theatre performances, information days, trade fairs, and public lectures.

Meetings within the scope of specifically official business are not covered, e.g. meetings of working groups, bodies, and committees, provided that the regulations on infection control (item 9) are complied with.

b) For assemblies on university campus in accordance with the Bavarian Assembly Act (Bayerisches Versammlungsgesetz), separate regulations described in BayIfSMV apply.

4. Ban on face-to-face courses 

a) For the time being, no face-to-face courses are being held at universities. This applies in particular to courses requiring physical attendance, e.g. lectures, seminars, tutorials, further training, courses, and other events.

b) Meetings within the scope of specifically official business are not covered, e.g. meetings of working groups, bodies, and committees, provided that the regulations on infection control (item 9) are complied with.

5. Examinations 

a) The holding of examinations in person is permitted if a minimum distance of 1.5 m is constantly maintained between all participants. However, as far as this is possible, justifiable, and legally permissible, use shall be made of examination formats not requiring physical attendance. 

In planning such face-to-face examinations, it must be taken into account that, depending on the number of persons to be examined, compliance with the regulations on protection against infection (item 9) will regularly require more extensive organisational measures to regulate admission and discharge, in particular a larger number of personnel.

b) If an examination is to be held in person, university management or a body appointed by it shall be notified of this. The detailed procedure, in particular the requisite content of the notification, shall be determined by university management at its own discretion. The purpose of the notification procedure is to enable universities to monitor actual compliance with the regulations on protection against infection (item 9), to ensure uniform procedure within the university, and, if necessary, to be able to meet the requirements of the health authorities (e.g. keeping lists of participants to track chains of infection, the obligation to notify the health authorities, etc.).

c) Spectators who are not part of the examination procedure are not to be admitted.

6. Practical courses

a) Practical courses that require special laboratory or work rooms at universities are also permitted, provided that a minimum distance of 1.5 m is constantly maintained between all participants. This applies in particular to:
  • laboratory courses
  • practical sports courses
  • artistic courses (e.g. theatre, music)
  • fieldwork courses.
b) Item 5b) shall apply accordingly.

c) The mixing of members of several working groups should be prevented as far as possible. Guests and spectators are not to be admitted.

7. Small seminars supplementing online teaching (Please see the supplementary regulations of the University of Bayreuth)

a) Smaller seminars up to a maximum of 30 participants, which are necessary to supplement the online teaching in individual cases, are also permitted.

b) Item 5b) shall apply accordingly.

c) The mixing of members of several seminars shall be avoided if possible. Guests and spectators are not allowed.

8. Libraries and archives

a) Libraries at universities can be opened. No more than one visitor per 20 m² of accessible library or archive floor-space may be admitted.

b) University management shall decide on the type and extent of such opening. Depending on local conditions (e.g. library staff capacity, architectural constraints, expected demand), university management may restrict opening to certain user groups (e.g. teaching staff) or purposes (e.g. teaching purposes), or prioritise these over other user groups and purposes. 

c) When deciding on the type and extent of opening, a strict standard must always be applied. It should be taken into account that, depending on the local (e.g. architectural) conditions, compliance with the regulations on protection against infection (Item 9) in library operations will regularly require extensive organizational measures and a large number of personnel. This applies in particular to the opening of reading rooms.

9. General measures to prevent infection

a) Social distance requirement

Wherever possible, a minimum distance between two persons of 1.5 m must be maintained. This social distance requirement applies at all times - both in daily business operations and when conducting examinations and practical courses, insofar as these are permitted under the above regulations. It is also to be observed in areas of movement and meeting such as corridors and hallways, and when entering and leaving rooms and buildings.

Where this is not possible (e.g. through measures of work organisation), alternative protective measures must be taken. Transparent partitions (e.g. made of Perspex) must be installed where there is public traffic (e.g. at information and lending desks) and, if possible, also to separate workplaces lacking safe social distance. In cases of doubt, where the minimum distance cannot be safely maintained, facial masks should be worn. 

If possible, office work is to be carried out from home, as stipulated by university management. The necessary work on site is to be organised (e.g. by using free room capacities) in such a way that multiple occupancy of rooms is avoided or sufficient social distance is provided.

Especially for examinations and meetings, the size and equipment (e.g. arrangement of chairs and tables) of the room shall be chosen in accordance with the number of participants, so that the minimum social distance can be maintained. If seats are to be left free in rooms used for such events, it is recommended that the empty seats, or those reserved for use, be marked.

b) Hygiene

Everyone is encouraged to help reduce the risk of infection by washing their hands regularly and by adhering to cough and sneeze etiquette (only in the crook of their arm).

The university will ensure that there is sufficient opportunity for hand washing or hand disinfection during office hours, examinations, and practical courses requiring attendance, depending on the room conditions and the expected number of people. Cleaning materials and disposable towels must be kept in sufficient quantities in sanitary rooms and laboratories. The minimum social distance of 1.5 m must also be maintained in sanitary rooms.

Tools and work equipment are to be used in a personalised manner wherever possible. Where this is not possible, regular cleaning is to be carried out - especially before passing such tools or equipment to other persons. Otherwise, suitable "protective clothing (e.g. gloves)" must be used.

The university shall ensure that rooms and work equipment are cleaned regularly, if necessary several times a day, and disinfected if necessary, depending on the type of use and number of users. This applies in particular to

Desks and work surfaces used during examinations and practical courses by several participants in short succession. Depending on the type and extent of use, a cleaning schedule is to be drawn up.

Rooms in which persons are permanently present should be aired regularly (guideline value: every 45 minutes for five minutes, if this is not already ensured by technical means).

See also: Cleaning and ventilation concept of the University of Bayreuth

c) Public traffic

Public traffic, in particular involving students, is to be reduced as far as possible. If possible, it should be replaced by telephone, postal, or electronic (e.g. e-mail) communication. This applies in particular to office hours, registration, applications, submission of papers, etc.

If personal attendance is nevertheless absolutely necessary, it should only take place by prior appointment to avoid crowds of people. Appointments are to be timed in such a way that waiting times or crowds of people in waiting areas are avoided. 

Admissible events (e.g. examinations) should be separated as far apart as possible in terms of time and space so that there is no mixing of participants from separate events (e.g. after the end of an examination).

d) Waiting areas, admission and discharging

Waiting areas shall be provided with appropriate markings (e.g. floor markings), notices and/or barriers to facilitate compliance with the social distancing rules. This also applies to places and routes where experience has shown that crowds of people accumulate.

For permitted events where larger numbers of people are expected (e.g. examinations), the university must ensure through organisational measures (e.g. additional security personnel, barriers, markings, etc.) that the minimum social distance of 1.5 m is ensured even before and during admission and discharging, and that people do not remain on the premises unnecessarily after the end of the event.

e) Sick persons and suspected cases

Sick persons, especially those with symptoms of a respiratory disease or with non-specific general symptoms, will not be allowed to participate in examinations or practical courses.

The same applies to persons who have been in contact with persons diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last 14 days (category I and II contacts).

f) Risk groups

Members of groups with an increased risk of developing severe symptoms (risk groups according to the Robert Koch Institute), are recommended to take the necessary measures for self-protection. This may include wearing respiratory protection providing the protective effect as individually required. Universities, wherever possible, should offer staff appropriate advice from the university medical officer.

g) Competences

All members of the university are responsible for ensuring that the above guidelines are properly observed in the area for which they are responsible. This applies in particular to supervisors, chairpersons of meetings, examiners, and teaching staff. This also includes the responsibility of informing, in an appropriate manner, the relevant persons within their own area (e.g. participants in examinations and practical courses) about the applicable rules for infection protection. The university is to carry out spot checks on compliance with the regulations on infection protection.

The details of the implementation of these guidelines are determined by university management. University management may, at its own discretion, set stricter regulations.

10. Effective date

These Directives shall enter into force on 22 June 2020. The directives of 11 May 2020 shall simultaneously cease to apply.

These guidelines were agreed upon between the twelve universities comprising Universität Bayern e.V., and were approved by the Bavarian State Ministry of Science and the Arts.

These guidelines are continuously updated and adapted to the currently applicable BayIfSMV.

Webmaster: Kathrin Faltermeier

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