The impact of the deadly coronavirus Sars-CoV-2 is likely to reverberate across global higher education long after the outbreak is eventually brought under control, experts have warned.
In the most affected areas, universities face the prospect of losing an entire semester or more. In China, where the health emergency started and where most of the cases have occurred, institutions – including foreign branch campuses – have called a halt to in-person teaching. Administrators in Hong Kong universities, which are among the most internationalised in the world, have been frank in their assessment that a return to normal teaching in early March is “unlikely”.
Travel bans have prevented hundreds of thousands of Chinese from returning to universities where they were studying or were due to begin courses.