Update ahead of 17 May and Graduation Save the Dates


We wrote to you ahead of the start of term on 21 April with an update on term three. On Monday 10 May, the Government announced that their four tests have been met and the legal restrictions on our lives will continue to reduce as part of the their roadmap out of lockdown. Going into a bar and eating inside a restaurant might not be top of your list during your exams and assessments, but in today’s message we’ll outline what’s changing on campus when the restrictions are removed on 17 May.  

Campus has remained open this academic year for students in Halls and for all students who were not able to study at their out of term address. By 17 May, when restrictions are lifted, most teaching, whether face-to-face for students on practical or practice-based courses, or online, will have been completed. This means that the lifting of restrictions will not have a significant impact on your learning. However, we know that the Government restrictions have impacted what you’re allowed to do outside of the actual or virtual classroom, and that’s where you will see a difference as the restrictions are lifted.  

What’s changing? 

Venues are opening

It’s been great to see so many of you back at Medicine and the Packhorse (despite the weather) and from Monday we can move indoors with the Students’ Union re-opening venues and the Give It A Go events going ahead in person. Keep checking back to the SU calendar here as events are added.  

You can meet indoors and outdoors

From Monday 17 May, six people or two households can meet indoors and up to 30 people can meet outdoors. The exception to this will be our Halls; apart from continuing to allow established 'support bubbles', visitors are not permitted, as we all need to play our part and ensure that the lessening of restrictions does not lead to outbreaks, especially during this exam and assessment period. When you get together, please ensure that you know your status by taking part in regular testing

The Library remains open for quiet, individual study during the assessment period, including for those without suitable study space at home. Please be considerate towards those revising for assessments, and remember that the rules around wearing face coverings also continue to apply. Study spaces across campus remain open for individual study. 

Making it easy to get tested and playing your part

From 17 May it will be easier to record your home testing on the NHS site and, as long as you click on Royal Holloway under the options, the College will get this information and we’ll know that you’ve tested. Home test kits can be ordered from the NHS  and delivered to your home, they’re available at Englefield Pharmacy and can also be picked up at the PCR testing site in car park 12 on campus. Of course, if you are exempt from testing (e.g. because you have recently recovered from Covid-19) you can update the College by completing the exemption form

Our lateral flow campus testing centre (based in the Picture Gallery) will also continue, offering a quick and easy service to keep you safe. Booking is preferred but you can walk-in as well – it is open Monday to Friday, 8am to 12pm. If you’re testing on campus, we’ve introduced a Thanks for testing rewards programme for you and your favourite club, society or student volunteering programme. 

With the increased freedoms from 17 May, comes an increased focus on testing, so please get into the habit now and it will help us all.  

What's coming up?


National Volunteers’ Week and the Volunteering Awards are taking place from 1-7 June. Find out more about how to get involved here.  The deadline for entries is Monday 17 May.


The Bright Network’s Internship Experience UK opens today, and you can find out more here.  

Summer internships at Royal Holloway: Each school will be offering a number of projects for undergraduate students in the penultimate or final years to be part of during the summer vacation. Details will follow later this month about the opportunities available and the application process. 

Careers Fair and support

The Summer Careers fair will be on 9 June 2021, offering you the opportunity to talk to recruiters and apply for live vacancies through a virtual event.   

Careers events and workshops (covering job searching, CVs, applications and interviews) are available on Moodle.  


Today we’re publishing ‘Save the Dates’ for our postponed Graduation Ceremonies. We are all disappointed that it was necessary to postpone on campus graduation ceremonies again this year. In a normal year, graduation ceremonies need months of advance planning.  The uncertainty about what restrictions may or may not be in place meant we had to take the difficult decision to set the dates for when we are confident that we can hold ceremonies on campus, in the same way the College has for generations, allowing you to graduate with your class and celebrate with your family and friends. Click here for ‘Save the Date’ and more information about ceremonies, including how we’ll be marking your Graduation virtually.        

The next academic year and teaching on your course 

Based on the information available to us now, we are excited to be planning to return to studying on campus in September. We’re planning a mix of face-to-face, on campus, teaching and learning support, with some digital elements. This is building on the positive feedback around taking part in digital learning from students over the last year.   

We currently expect that all legal restrictions will be removed by September and so we, the Students’ Union and clubs and societies are planning a full programme of face-to-face events and experiences. We are also planning for facilities such as the Library, gym, cafés and bars to be open and we will continue to provide a full range of student support services.  

Exams and assessments 

All the information you need is available on our Completing your assessments webpage, including how to access the term three assessment timetable, the different formats of assessment and how they can be accessed and what academic misconduct is and how to avoid it. 

We’re here to support you to complete this term successfully, whether you’re on campus or studying remotely. If you would like to discuss any wellbeing concerns, please contact our wellbeing advisers at wellbeing@royalholloway.ac.uk. For the latest news follow @RHCampusLife and @SURHUL and download our Welcome to Royal Holloway app 

Jon Howden-Evans

Director of Student Academic Services


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