Advice for Students Advice for Students

Updated 27.07.2020

Please also take a look at the updated FAQs on the Portal about assessment, exam boards, results and progression. These will help you understand what you can expect to happen at the July exam boards, depending on whether you have finished all of your assessments or are still working on them.

What’s happening for next academic year (2020/21)? Will students be taught on campus?
Current students are receiving messages from their Head of School detailing plans for next academic year. Currently, these plans are:

  • To start as usual in September and to deliver as much in person, on campus teaching as is safe and practicably possible to do so, for example through small group teaching.
  • We are planning to deliver the academic content of larger lectures digitally for all students in advance of smaller group face-to-face sessions.
  • We will also do our best to ensure that students who are unable to return to UEA in September to commence face-to-face teaching can continue to participate as fully as possible remotely and online, until such time as they are able to join us.

We understand that some students might feel worried about returning to study on campus due to their personal circumstances such as health, travel, money or caring responsibilities. We are committed to supporting students to continue on their courses. Please let us know if you have this type of concern as soon as possible by emailing returners_support@uea.ac.uk so that we can then follow this up with you and provide an opportunity to present your concerns. Identifying this early means we will be able to start to help you.

Further details for next academic year are continuing to be worked on, and these will be communicated to students in the coming weeks. No one can be certain about what the next few months will bring, and what has been outlined above may have to change depending on government advice and measures – all students will be informed of any changes.

When will teaching begin next academic year?
Please see our Semester Dates on the Portal.

How will students be assessed next academic year?
Details around assessments for next year are continuing to be worked on and will be communicated to students once finalised. One change that has been made for next academic year, however, is the introduction of an assessment period in January at the end of the Autumn Semester in which students will be able to complete some items of coursework and projects and sit examinations. The summer assessment period will reduce to three weeks.  

Students will also be contacted by their Heads of Schools regarding any changes to modules next academic year.

What about student maintenance loans and bursaries - are there any changes?
It’s been a very uncertain year and not surprisingly many people have worries about their financial circumstances. UEA is here to help and we’ve put some extra measures in place to support students encountering financial difficulties.

As usual students need to apply to Student Finance England (SFE) to see if they are eligible for a maintenance loan from SFE and bursary from UEA for the next academic year. We encourage you to apply as soon as possible. UEA will use SFE financial information, with your consent to share, to assess your eligibility for a bursary.

This assessment will look at your household income for the 2018/19 financial year so if your financial circumstances have changed it might be wise to consider asking SFE to reassess your case. This means that even if you weren’t eligible for extra support previously, you might be in 2020/21.

This year we’ve also arranged for students who are eligible for a UEA bursary to be paid their first instalment earlier than usual, on the 25th September. This will also be a larger slice of your entitlement with half paid upfront and then half in February. We hope this will help students buy what they need to support their studies, whether that’s new technology, books or other materials. You can find out more on our bursaries page

Where can I find information on learning and assessments for the remainder of this academic year (2019/20)?
Please see information on the Portal relating to undergraduate and postgraduate taught assessment for this year.

How is the University making sure the campus will be safe to return to in September?
Student and staff safety is our number one priority. We’ve carried out enhanced cleaning and we have detailed safety arrangements for teaching, learning and the campus environment. We’ve created new learning spaces, and adapted teaching rooms and communal areas to make social distancing is possible in lessons and when you’re walking around. We’re changing our timetables and introducing one-way systems and marked areas to help maintain social distancing. There are increased hygiene facilities, and hand sanitising stations are being installed at key locations.

Work is ongoing to ensure the return to campus is being managed in a planned, phased way and students will be kept informed.

What facilities will be open on campus in September?
We will be following Government guidance regarding our campus cafés, restaurants and bars, offering “grab and go” options - with safety restrictions – by the autumn. We are working closely with our colleagues in the Students’ Union to make sure that the social aspect of your time is as close to what you would expect.

Sportspark has also recently reopened in accordance with government guidelines, so you'll be able to enjoy their world-class facilities. The Library is also currently running a Click and Collect service from the Foyer – the building and study spaces remain closed due to government guidance, but students will be informed if this changes.  

Government advice is changing and we will respond accordingly - details are continuing to be worked on, and students will be kept informed.


I’m an international student – what happens if I’m unable to arrive on time for the start of the semester or if I’m affected by travel restrictions?
We are hopeful that any travel restrictions in place globally will be eased by September and we are closely monitoring the situation while following Government guidance. We will ensure that students who are unable to return to UEA in September to commence face-to-face teaching can continue to participate virtually and as fully as possible, until such time as they are able to join us.

We are also taking steps to provide flexible arrival options so international students who are required to self-isolate will be able to arrive two weeks before their semester commences, with those staying in UEA accommodation able to access their room early. You will have access to a comprehensive set of virtual learning tools, access to your lecturers and our digital library. This will ensure that you are able to commence learning and transition seamlessly into your classes. 

Student welfare and safety is at the forefront of everything we do, and we will send detailed information on the arrivals process to returning students throughout July and August. 

I’m an international student on a Tier 4 visa and I am remaining in the UK to continue my studies remotely – what do I need to do?
If you are remaining in the UK and are continuing your studies remotely, we still request that you complete the University’s Self Declaration of Absence form

I'm an international student in the UK with a visa which has just expired or is expiring shortly, and I am unable to leave because I am self-isolating or travel restrictions are preventing me from returning home - what do I need to do?
If you’re in the UK and your visa expires between 24 January 2020 and 30 July 2020, then your visa will be extended to 31 July 2020 if you cannot leave the UK because of travel restrictions or self-isolation related to coronavirus (COVID-19). You must complete and submit a Home Office form to update your records if your visa is expiring. You will find the form at https://gov.smartwebportal.co.uk/homeoffice/public/webform.asp?id=199&id2=5C97E7. It could be very helpful to take a screenshot of the completed form before submitting it, and retain a copy for your own records.

Please visit the Home Office's website to see the specific information relating to this extension.

I’m an international student with a Tier 4 visa studying Medicine or Nursing. Am I still restricted in the number of hours I can work per week during term time?
On 31st March the Home Secretary announced that, as a response to the national effort to combat coronavirus, trainee doctors and nurses will not be limited by the number of hours they can work in the NHS during term time. This change is expected to be in place for a limited period and only applies to work undertaken in the NHS. Your course and/or your School may have additional recommendations to consider as you balance your studies and any work so please ensure that you are aware of these before making any commitments.

I left some belongings in my room in UEA Accommodation and would now like to collect them – what do I need to do?
If you have returned home but still have belongings in your room in UEA Accommodation, the Government changed their guidance on 21.05.20 stating that students in England can return to their student accommodation to collect any belongings, provided they follow social distancing guidelines while doing so. UEA Accommodation have emailed students with details on how to arrange collecting their belongings – please check your UEA email.

If you have any questions regarding your room in UEA Accommodation, please email accom@uea.ac.uk.

I am a member of the British Armed Forces reserves - will I get deadline extensions and delayed examinations when I return to my studies?
Yes, students who are British Armed Forces reserves, or who are in other specialist volunteer roles, and who are deployed in this role will be given whatever support is necessary to ensure they can successfully complete their studies.