Support for Under 18s

Support, advice and our duty of care for minors

The university is aware that legislation and case-law indicates that the univeristy may have a different duty of care towards students who are minors (under the age of eighteen) at the point of entry onto their courses.

We are confident that the Academic School and the Student Advisory & Wellbeing teams will be able to offer the student any guidance needed for normal situations.  However, the University would like to make sure that in the event of any emergency or problem, the student knows who to contact for help. The University has identified the following central professional services staff who are aware of the student's status as a minor; who will treat anything told to them with discretion and sensitivity and who will make addressing any difficulties the student is having a matter of priority.  Please do not hesitate to contact them over anything that is troubling you.

  • Helen Groenendaal, Head of Student Advisory & Wellbeing  
  • Denise Keable, Head of International Support & Inclusivity (Student Advisory & Wellbeing)
  • Lee Fellows, Head of Student Wellbeing (Student Advisory & Wellbeing)

In an emergency or out of working hours you should call the University Security office (01784 443063) who will contact the relevant person.

Parent / Guardian authorisation from

All applicants who will be under the age of 18 at the commencement of their studies will be sent this authorisation form which should be completed and returned prior to arrival.  This form will also need to be signed by the parent / legal guardian.  These forms remain on file until the student turns 18 and are then deleted. All students who enrol will be contacted in their first term by a member of the Student Advisory & Wellbeing team and invited to meet with them to give them an overview of our support services and to answer any questions they may have.

Form for the 2020 / 2021 academic year (PDF version)

Form for the 2020 / 2021 academic year (Word version) 

Completed forms should be emailed to Student Advisory & Wellbeing.

Notification of under 18 status

Admissions will inform Student Advisory & Wellbeing of all such students as they register and all students and their parents will be asked to complete an authorisation form to be held within Student Advisoiry & Wellbeing until their 18th birthday.  In addition, the Student Advisory & Wellbeing Department will - where appropriate - request the nomination of a guardian in the UK for students under the age of 18 at the commencement of their studies. 

Halls of Residence teams (Premises and Hall Life), the Students' Union, and Academic Schools will be advised of students under the age of 18 who are using their services.  They are requested to be aware that these students are minors, to inform Student Advisory & Wellbeing of possible areas of risk or vulnerability they observe these students being involved in and to co-operate with any individual risk-limitation plans.


Level of care and support 

The University is not in a position to offer substantial extra care, support or surveillance to students under the age of majority.  The University does not act in loco parentis (will not take to fulfil the duties normally undertaken by a parent). 

In agreeing for a student to study here a parent / guardian accepts that they are willing for their student to receive the same degree of care and attention that the University gives it's adult students, and it is important that the parents make sure they understand the very adult environment that exists at a British University and that they understand the course that their student will be pursuing and what is involved in this. 

If a parent wishes for their student to receive additional care, support or oversight, they must personally make arrangements and take responsibility for its provision. 

Emergency contacts / UK contacts 

The parent must ensure that the University is supplied with emergency contact details and that these details are kept updated.  If the parents are not present in the UK, they should nominate a guardian in this country who will act for them if necessary. 

The parent must agree for the University to be able to arrange, in an emergency, medical and other care for their student, until contact is made and the parent's wishes ascertained.



The under age students may not be able to enter University or SU premises licensed for the supply of alcohol where the terms of that license specifies those present must be 18 or over.  In all cases the student must not purchase alcoholic drinks, allow others to buy alcoholic drinks for them or consume alcoholic drinks purchased. 

It is the responsibility of the student to identify themselves as a minor when appropriate and to obey all instructions issued to them concerning premises (for example wearing a wristband to identify themselves as a under 18 to staff). 

Failure to abide by these rules may be treated as a breach of regulations.  

 The student may not be able to hold any office in the University or Students' Union.



IThe parent / guardian must guarantee fulfilment of any contract the student enters into with the university and should undertake payment of all sums due under any such contract.  Negotiations egotiation concerning contracts shall normally be undertaken with the student, and when they have agreed the contract will be deemed to have been underwritten and guaranteed by the parent (or the guardian if appropriate).

Generally, the University shall deem the student as competent to understand all aspects of the normal university process, to obey the college regulations, to be disciplined under college procedures and shall not as a matter of routine make contact with the parent or guardian concerning any matter.  However, the University will take action to recover debts from the parent / guardian if the student fails to pay them and will reveal necessary details to the parent / guardian if necessary to recover these debts.


Tier 4 consent (Tier 4 applications only)

A student aged 16 or 17 has the legal right to live independently in the UK, and may make their own accommodation arrangements.  However, when a 16 or 17 year old applies for a visa under Tier 4 (General) regulations, they must have their parents' permission to both travel to the UK and to live independently. 

For more information, see the Tier 4 migrant guidance on the UK Government website or contact our Student Administration team.