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FAQs


 

FAQs following Government announcement on Monday 22 February 2021

I’m living on campus, can I go home for the Easter holidays?

Government guidance states that students who are living on campus, or locally, are expected to stay on campus and not return to an out of term address for the Easter holidays. This is to minimise movement of students, which the Government is referring to as a 'come back and stay back’ approach.

Does the return to teaching apply to me?

We are still working out the details and the relevant students will receive details on Friday (26 February). These are likely to be final year UG and PGT students who would benefit from access to labs, specialist equipment and performance spaces. Not all students on practical or practice-based courses are being asked to come back as we have worked hard to ensure that learning outcomes can be delivered online, in response to the restrictions    

I would benefit from face-to-face teaching why isn’t that being offered to me?

Government guidance asks that universities do not invite students back to campus when their course ‘can be reasonably be continued online’. So we have to make a judgement and prioritise using the Government guidance.  

If I’m asked to come back, do I have to?

We are only asking students to come back if you would benefit from a return to face-to-face teaching. But we recognise that this might not be possible for some students. If that’s the case for you, please contact the school office to discuss your personal circumstances.  

Is it ok to be on campus if I’m not being asked to return?

We recognise that there are a number of students who are living in Halls or in the local community. The letter from the Minister for Students on 23 February says that students should only access campus facilities if you have ‘inadequate study spaces or require additional support, such as mental health provision’. Government guidance asks that students stay where they are unless you have a compelling reason to return to campus. Reasons to return to campus would include feeling that you are better able to study from campus, or because you believe that studying from campus would improve your wellbeing.     

Can I now cancel my accommodation contract?

The rent removal applies to the end of March and we will communicate more on that closer to the time. We are still committed to a return to campus for term three.   

Can I have a discount on my tuition fees?

The coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has impacted every aspect of our lives and your course leaders have worked hard to adapt how we deliver your education this year in response. Our priority is to support you in your studies, to help you successfully complete this academic year and to ensure that you are not academically disadvantaged as a direct consequence of the pandemic. 

I want to return to campus. What do I need to do?

If you have a compelling reason to return to campus and wish to return to Halls accommodation, please contact Student Services giving us at least five days’ notice to activate your access and reapply the rent from your return date.   

I’ve not been offered face-to-face teaching for now, when am I likely to receive another update from the College?

We hope to be able to provide an update on our plans for term three by the end of term two. Although this will be subject to the Government as they have committed to a further review in mid-April, when further guidance will be given.  

My course requires me to come back to campus but I’ll be living alone, what support is available to me?

Please get in touch with supportingyou@royalholloway.ac.uk who can point you to sources of connection and support. Wherever you’re living, you can also take part in the Hall Life events.     

My course requires me to come back to campus but I can't afford to, what financial support is available to me?

Our Study Support Grant is available to all students who are facing financial difficulties to support the continuation of your studies. 

The Study Support Grants can be used to claim costs towards a number of different things that will support your studies, including to cover outgoings/living costs for students who have experienced a loss of employment and test and vaccine costs to assist international students with travelling back to campus. Find out more about the Study Support Grant and how to apply. 

I’m a PGR student. How does the announcement of 22 February affect me?

The short answer is that it does not make any difference to the advice that we have been giving since the beginning of term i.e. we recommend that you continue working from home where possible but that you are permitted to come on to campus to use labs/study space if you need to. Further details can be found here.

My rent removal goes up to 31 March but I’m being told the earliest I can potentially come back is mid-April. Can I have my rent removed for that time period?

We will communicate more on that closer to the time. We are still committed to a return to campus for term three.   

Do I have to take a test when I return to university?

Students are encouraged to test before they travel back to university, where community testing facilities are available to them. The Government FAQ has more details.

FAQs for living

Can I be part of my home household and my College household?

When you join your flat/house, you form a new household for the purpose of living at university. This 'university household' is subject to the government rules and guidance on numbers and visitors, like any other household. You do remain part of the household you were part of prior to joining university - and you can continue to meet them at that household (e.g. for overnight stays to a family home).

Please remember to play your part and not move between households if you or anyone in your household are displaying symptoms.

Can my family visit me in Halls?

Currently, we have a no visitor policy in our Halls and that applies to families as well as friends

Course content and study methods

How will the face-to-face activity be replaced?

You will be able to take part in small group seminars and tutorials using online platforms such as Microsoft Teams for Education. You will join the seminar or tutorial online, joining in with classmates who are also studying remotely. This means that you can continue to benefit from group activity. You will also have regular one to one contact with your personal tutor again using Microsoft Teams for Education. This means that, when it is safe to do do, you will be able to join your class in person and carry on with your course without interruption.

If I'm studying my course online, how will the time difference be accommodated?

We are, as far as possible, arranging small group seminars, tutorials and meetings with your personal tutor at times appropriate to the students attending them. 

I’m not on campus, how can I connect with my classmates?

You will take part in small group seminars and tutorials online, joining in with classmates who are on campus. There’s also events and activities taking place online organised by the SU clubs and societies and also department organised events.   

What support will be available to me if I’m continuing my course online?

Check out the 2020/21 Information Hub for details of our support services. Also follow @RHCampusLife on Instagram and Twitter where we post information and download the Student Guide in the Royal Holloway app

The degree I’m studying provides accreditation by a professional body. Is this still be available if I study online?

Yes, it will meet all professional body requirements.

I’m struggling with my IT equipment, can I get help?

For students who are at a digital disadvantage, we have a Study Support Grant scheme which can provide you with a laptop (if you meet certain criteria). 

When will I get my timetable?

Your timetable for term one will be available from 16 September, with timetables for terms two and three following on later in the first term. 

Tuition fees and funding

Will the changes to the course structure make any difference to the tuition fee?

No. We have adapted our courses to combine both face-to-face and online activity in response to the global pandemic. We are not offering an online degree. We are using a number of different approaches to ensure that if your arrival on campus is delayed, you can continue your course and will have the same access to world class academics and excellent teaching and learning support as the students on your course who are on campus. Our expectation is that you will arrive on campus as soon as you are able to and that, as long as you have kept up with the work of the class online, you will be able to join the class in person and carry on with your course without interruption.

Lateral flow testing on campus

Who needs to take part in lateral flow testing?

We are running lateral flow testing on our Egham campus in the Picture Gallery and students and staff who attend campus regularly are encouraged to be tested twice weekly through the test centre. However, one test is better than none and students and staff should not travel to campus solely for the purpose of taking a test. Find out more

 

Accommodation for current students

What is the timetable for applying for accommodation as a returning student?

Returning students can apply for accommodation in one of our Halls of Residences using our Online Accommodation System. The application window is currently open and applications are processed on a first come first served basis subject to availability for returners. Find out more

I am clinically extremely vulnerable. How will this affect me living in halls accommodation?

If you consider yourself to be extremely clinically vulnerable according to the government’s guidelines, then please contact us via disability-dyslexia@royalholloway.ac.uk as soon as possible so that we can discuss your requirements.

I wish to change my College accommodation due to being unhappy with my allocation/dispute with flatmates, how can I do this?

Unfortuntely we are unable to accommodate any changes for accommodation this academic year unless it is for verfied safeguarding/protection issues. You can get support from Hall Life in resolving any disputes within your accommodation via hall.life@royalholloway.ac.uk.  

I live in private rented accommodation and I am worried because my housemate keeps inviting other people into our house, what can I do?

You should speak to your housemates about this and call a meeting to discuss your concerns. Information on how to hold a household meeting is contained in our Be a Good Neighbour Guide. If you are unable to do this you can contact your landlord or letting agent and discuss the issue with them. You can contact a memeber of our wellbeing team via community@royalholloway.ac.uk. 

I wish to change my College accommodation due to being unhappy with flatmates, how can I do this?

Unfortunately we are unable to accommodate any changes for accommodation this academic year unless it is for verified safeguarding/protection issues. You can get support from Hall Life in resolving any disputes within your accommodation via hall.life@royalholloway.ac.uk.  

Campus safety

What precautions are you taking to make sure that the campus is coronavirus-secure?

At Royal Holloway, we are proud of providing a safe, friendly and inclusive community. The pandemic has impacted every aspect of our lives and we take our responsibility to keep you safe very seriously.

With this in mind, we have made a number of practical changes. These include reducing the capacity of teaching rooms and changing room layouts to facilitate social distancing; more pedestrian space and adding signage to help you to navigate the campus safely.  Additional cleaning has been introduced, hand sanitiser is provided in key locations around campus and you are encouraged to wash your hands regularly.

Face coverings must be worn indoors unless you have a reasonable reason not to. By wearing a face covering you help to protect others and play your part in helping to protect the whole campus community.

 To keep our campus covid-secure, we require everyone who is on campus, or living locally, to test on arrival and take part in twice-weekly lateral flow testing to enable us to play our part in helping to control the spread of Covid-19.

How are you managing social distancing in the classroom and around campus?

We have reduced the capacity of teaching and learning spaces to facilitate social distancing. Furniture and room layouts have been changed to support this. By combining these changes and the introduction of online learning activities our goal is to provide you with high quality teaching and learning support and a positive student experience, within the context of the pandemic, so that you can succeed in your goals.

We have created more study hubs where you can meet with your household or study individually. These include our cafés that are providing space, food and drink during lockdown.  We may also limit the number of students entering particularly busy areas and manage movement around campus, with additional signage, to help you to navigate the campus safely.

My parents are concerned about my safety, is information I can point them to?

Information and FAQs for parents and supports can be found on our external website. Parents and supporters are also welcome to contact the Student Advisory & Wellbeing team to talk through general concerns. If they wish to talk more specifically about your personal circumstances, we will need your consent to talk to them.

I am an international student and will be travelling to campus from overseas. When I arrive, will I need to spend time in quarantine before I join my course?

The UK government currently requires that if you arrive in the UK from overseas you will not be allowed to leave the place you are staying for the first ten days you are in the UK.  This is known as ‘self-isolating’ but has also been referred to as ‘quarantine’. You can read the UK government’s information here, which includes details of any exceptions.

You can travel to the place where you are staying and details of the travel arrangements Royal Holloway has in place to help all students arriving in the UK are available here

Do you have a Code of Conduct related to coronavirus (Covid-19)?

Our Covid-19 Code of Conduct & Community Responsibility Agreement confirms the anticipated conduct of our community and the internal processes that will be followed if there is a suspected breach in relation to the health, safety and wellbeing of campus. Read our Covid-19 Code of Conduct & Community Responsibility Agreement here.

 

Student experience

What events and services are available on campus?

The Students’ Union online coronavirus hub has updates on the events and services available. Also, download the Royal Holloway app and the Student Life Guide for the College events calendar and details of services. These can also be found on the student intranet.  The pandemic means we are all having to do familiar things a bit differently, but our goal is to provide you with a positive student experience, within the guidelines of what is safe for the whole campus community

Can I still meet up with friends in cafes on campus?

Our study hubs and cafes remain open for you individually or with your household. 

What facilities like bars are open on campus?

Our bars are temporarily closed and re-purposed as study spaces for the lockdown

I am unable to find part time work and struggling financially – what can I do?

We understand that students who would usually work part time may be struggling financially as a result of the lockdown. If you're affected, you can talk to our Financial Wellbeing team, and apply for support through our Study Support Grant. The grant can support students with living costs, travel for study and IT equipment such as laptops. Find out more

Who can I talk to if I am worried about my health and wellbeing?

Contact supportingyou@rhul.ac.uk and check out their information here Our Student Wellbeing team act as a first line service and support all students with general wellbeing. The advisers will listen to your concerns and co-ordinate the right support for you.

Most of our support services are available both online and face-to-face. This includes our mental health service (although full counselling is only available face-to-face in person on campus). Our GP Surgery also offers appointments with doctors and nurses on campus and online.

We have a range of support videos and other resources for you to use when you need them.

We can help you to get in touch with other support services too.

What are the opening hours of the Davison Building? 

It is likely the hours of opening will change periodically to reflect demand. Current Library opening hours can be found here.

When the Davison Building is closed, alternative study space is available in Founder’s Reading Room. 

Will opening hours of the Davison Building be extended at peak times such as during key assessment periods?

During peak demand in the lead up to key assessment periods Library hours may be extended. 

Study skills support

What support is available to me?

Whilst England is currently in a national lockdown, there are plenty of opportunities for you to continue to learn and develop your skills. From developing your academic skills, to discovering the range of health and wellbeing resources and guidance available to you, there’s something for everyone. Find out more. 

 

Government FAQs

Read the FAQs from the Office for Students on returning to university here.