Updated: 19 November 2020

We know that many applicants and enquirers will have questions or concerns about your planned studies at Northumbria University, and we hope that these frequently asked questions will help reassure you.

We are continuing to update this page as we receive new guidance or as the situation changes. We are here to support you, so please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions at all or you would like to chat. We will communicate regularly with all students who have applied to us.

January 2021 applicant and offer holder information

We are aware that you will have many questions about your application to Northumbria. You will find a list of useful FAQs below.

For all applicants

Our January intake is going ahead as planned. There may be slight changes to dates to allow additional travel time for you – we will communicate this to you if it changes. All courses and dates are scheduled to run as planned and we are continuingly reviewing the current situation in relation to Covid-19 and if there are any subsequent changes, we will advise you as soon as we possibly can.

If you are able to travel safely to London, we intend to teach your course using a mix of on-campus and online teaching. If you are unable to travel due to travel restrictions in your country, you can start online and join us when  you are able to travel to London.

You will learn on campus, with fellow students in timetabled sessions through small group teaching. As social distancing rules relax the number of hours each week for on-campus face-to-face learning will be increased.

You will also participate in live online classes each week via our advanced user-friendly virtual learning environment – Blackboard Ultra alongside your on-campus classes. These online sessions will include interactive activities and opportunities to discuss topics with your tutors and fellow students.

There will also be recorded lecture materials available for you 24/7 to enable you to study at times which suit your own personal needs.

You can also engage in on-line tutorials with your tutors and programme leader.

As such, your learning will be based on a mix of scheduled, real time and any time sessions, and access to your online learning environment 24/7, on your mobile, laptop or computer.

We’re also making study spaces for private study on-campus available for booking through an online booking portal. You can find out more information about the steps we are taking on campus on our Campus Updates page here.

Please continue to monitor these pages on our website for up to date information. Please also be assured we will be contacting you individually to make arrangements.

Yes. We are happy to defer you to a later intake to meet your own personal circumstances. We recognise that there is significant uncertainty with Covid-19 and are keen to support our applicants accordingly.

You will be given a range of options including starting in May 2021 if this better meets your personal circumstances, subject to the course being available in this intake.

Those of you who can travel safely to our London Campus for January will be able to join us on campus for learning and teaching; those who cannot do so will start online and join as soon as practicable. Each undergraduate and postgraduate programme will involve blended learning, meaning that face-to-face learning complements online learning and vice versa, as explained in this video. Blended learning does not normally mean that you can study wholly online with optional on-campus engagement. However, exceptions may be made on an individual basis for students who, for legitimate reasons, are unable to travel to campus. Please complete the Personalised Support survey as part of enrolment to inform us if you are unable to engage with the on campus offer from the start of Semester 1. We will then be in touch with you.

Our approach to online learning goes beyond just providing you with material online or via the university’s virtual learning environment and e-library. Your teaching will include live online sessions to replace your lectures and seminars and you will have the opportunity to work online in small groups.

Our Learning On Demand system additionally allows you to log into a virtual PC which provides all the software you would have if you were sitting at a PC on campus. There will also be directed reading via our online library and use of video and podcast.

We also recognise that learning is also about having access to have individual discussions with your tutors. There will be opportunities for ongoing tutorials and regular online drop-in sessions to talk to your lecturers about how things are going, ask questions about your learning and share any worries you may have.

You will be provided with an individualised timetable for your online learning and induction to your programme and how to learn effectively online as part of induction.

Recognising that some or all of your study will be online you will need to access the University’s resources via internet. As such you should have access to a computer (desktop/laptop) that is less than 5 years old alongside speakers/headphones/earbuds for listening to audio or videos presented and a webcam. Google Chrome is our preferred internet browser although others can be used. You should have access to a stable internet connection of 56K or greater. The University Student Desktop will provide access to core software required and a Student edition of Microsoft Office 365 can also be downloaded free of charge.

If you plan to be able to come to campus in January and you require accommodation, please contact the QA Higher Education Accommodation Service who will be able to help you arrange this.

If you would like to speak to someone, please contact QAHE.accommodation@qa.com or 0203 6276101.

In line with government guidance our course fees will not change regardless of whether you are attending on campus or studying fully online, as we are delivering the same course content with the same academic staff online as on campus, albeit delivered remotely. You will be able to access the same high quality teaching materials, observe the same sessions and interact with your classmates, although virtually rather than face to face. As soon as you are able to join us on campus we will be glad to welcome you. In January 2021, we will be teaching both online and on campus.

To comply with social distancing rules, teaching will be blended learning. This means that you will attend some classes in person and for some others, you will continue online. This will be under on-going review.

You can find out more information about the steps we are taking on campus on our Campus Updates page here.

For international students

Our standard deposit refund policy which can be found on the Terms and Conditions of your Offer continues to apply and we will of course refund your deposit in those scenarios.

In addition, if you are adversely affected by Covid-19, which impacts your ability to meet the conditions of your offer or your entry to the UK due to travel restrictions, we will also refund your deposit and discuss possible deferral options with you.

UKCISA has a range of information and advice for International Applicants and Students, including a COVID-19 FAQ section which is regularly updated

We are aware that many applicants are unable to book tests. Northumbria accepts a wide variety of English tests and exemptions that may offer an alternative, including the QA Higher Education English test.

If you have specific questions about evidencing your English language, please contact us directly and we can discuss your options with you.

You can also find Covid-19 updates through the following links:

We understand that there is ongoing disruption to global travel and therefore, in line with the Home Office guidelines for students on a Student Visa (formerly Tier 4), we recognise that you may need to start your study online and join us when you are able to do so. Northumbria will use expected online contact points such as logging into online learning portals, attending virtual lectures and tutorials, and online submission of coursework to monitor academic engagement. Please complete the Personalised Support survey during enrolment to inform us if you are unable to travel to the UK for the start of Semester 1 and someone will be in touch with you.

You are required to engage with Northumbria’s blended learning offer for 2020/21 which means you must study on campus when you are timetabled to do so. You are permitted by the Home Office to study remotely in the UK in exceptional circumstances only. If you are an International student in the UK who cannot come on to campus from the start of Semester 1, please complete the Personalised Support survey during enrolment to inform us and someone will be in touch.

Information for International Students who require a CAS – Semester 1 entry 

We hope that you will be able to join us on campus in time for the start of the induction programme. We do, however, understand that it may not be possible to travel to campus on this date. If that is the case, then you will start our course online, (from your home country) and then you will join us on campus on one of our later transition dates.

We are currently in the process of setting these transition dates for those joining us in the January 2021 intake. Once confirmed we will update this information here and we will contact you directly with these as part of our admissions process.

A transition date is the date that you will join us on Campus, if you are unable to join us at the start of the programme. This is NOT a later start date of your programme, as you will still begin your course in January 2021 online and then you will complete your study on campus when you are able to join us in the UK.

Yes, if you are not starting on campus from your start date in January 2021, then you must start and engage with your programme online, until you are able to transition to campus. If you do not engage with your online study prior to moving to campus, we may not issue you a CAS.

You need to tell us when you plan to arrive. When you have accepted your offer and requested your CAS, you will be sent a short questionnaire which will allow you to inform us of when you are able to arrive. If possible, you should aim to arrive on campus as soon as possible, ideally from the start of the programme.

No, you will not require a visa when you study online, but you will need a visa to join us on campus. If you require a visa to travel to the university, you will need to make sure you make all the necessary preparations for this before travelling. There is more information on the page about when and how you can make the transition to the campus.

Your CAS will only be issued when we are clear that you are able to travel to Campus in the UK. Once you have let us know the date when you plan to come to campus, we will ensure that you have your CAS in good time to make a visa application and make any necessary arrangements to arrive on campus by this date.

Many Visa Centres have reopened or are due to reopen soon. There are, however, several countries where centres are still closed or are not currently processing new applications yet. You can keep up to date with the latest information here.

The UK Government regulations currently require travellers arriving from overseas to self-isolate for 14 days. If this is in place when you are ready to join us, we strongly encourages you to plan your travel to the UK so that you arrive 14 days before the start of teaching, if visa arrangements allow. Whilst these regulations remain in place, we want to ensure that this process is as comfortable as possible for you and will offer support throughout the 14-day period.

We recommend you check the latest UK government advice before you travel. This also includes a list of countries which are exempt from the self-isolation period. Please note that this list is subject to change so it’s important to continue to check this as you get closer to your intended travel date

If you are travelling to the UK to join us, please complete this online form with your travel information. This will allow our partners at QA Higher Education to know when you are arriving and gives us the opportunity to provide any additional advice, guidance and support before and upon your arrival to the UK. This is particularly important should you be arriving from a country where you may need to self-isolate on arrival in the UK.

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