Here you will find answers to coronavirus FAQs specifically for applicants and offer holders.

You will find details of some of the steps we are taking to help ensure a safe and fulfilling student experience for you from September. We cover the combination of on campus and online teaching and learning you’ll receive, on campus facilities, our plans for welcome activities and student support, and the health and safety measures that we are taking. For a quick overview of our plans, see our animated video at www.qmu.ac.uk/coronavirus/applicants/

If you need more help, please contact our Admissions team.

Last updated: 8 October 2020

Where can I find information on the University's plans for teaching this academic year?

How is teaching being delivered in the autumn semester?

All new first year students will receive six hours on-campus teaching per week from the very start of their course, in two to three hour blocks across two to three days a week. All new (full-time) postgraduate students will receive five hours on-campus teaching from the very start of their courses, again delivered in two to three hour blocks across two days a week.

If at any point in the semester Scottish Government health guidelines require it, this activity will be moved online for the required period.

Level 2-4 students will also receive a combination of on-campus and online learning, the balance of which will vary according to programme requirements.

The level of teaching of students in other years (i.e. not first year and PG courses) will be decided by the programme team, working within certain parameters. Where programme teams have questions or concerns about parameters and arrangements, they should contact their Head of Division.

The teaching day will be extended so that it runs from 9am to 8pm, though we will minimise the number of times any student or staff member is scheduled to be on campus in the evening. No student or staff member will be timetabled to be on campus for more than 8 hours on any day. The timetabling team will do everything possible to ensure the best use of space, to avoid, for example classes having to move from one seminar room to another as far as possible.

We will be allowing for physical distancing in our face to face teaching.

I am starting my course in January (ie semester two). What will teaching be like during that semester?

Anticipating a continued requirement for social distancing and other COVID-19 health and safety restrictions for the next six months, we are planning on maintaining our current blended approach to learning and teaching into semester two (the semester that begins in January).

Our blended approach involves a mix of on-campus and online activity. The actual number of hours you will be scheduled for, and the balance of that mix, will vary by programme and level of study but, Scottish Government guidance permitting, all students will have some timetabled hours on campus each week.

The variation in hours across programmes and levels of study is to take account of students' different levels of familiarity with the University's approach to learning and teaching, its support systems and the requirements of individual programmes, and the extent to which students have already had the opportunity to form social networks with their peers.  Consequently, we will prioritise on campus time for students, such as yourselves, who have just commenced their studies with us.  We hope to be able to provide more information to applicants in November, and aim to issue personal timetables for 2021 to all students in December.

Digital learning opportunities (such as online lectures and online live discussion) will be provided to compensate for any reduction in standard levels of timetabled on campus learning.

We can confirm that those courses which have been postponed from semester one to start in semester two WILL start in semester two.

As with semester one, we will not be holding on-campus written examinations at the end of semester two.

I am an international student starting in January and may need to quarantine? How will the University handle that?

We appreciate that it might be unlikely that you will be able to arrive in time to have completed your self-isolation prior to the commencement of the semester. However, please be reassured that if that’s the case, you will be able to start your studies remotely when teaching starts and then join us face to face when you self-isolation is over. Indeed, at the start of our autumn semester, a number of students were in that situation.

Is the LRC (library) open?

The Learning Resource Centre is open to students from  8am to 9pm every day. The tiered area of the main atrium, with study spaces, will be open 24 hours a day, with vending facilities available. Access will be via student card, ie no booking required.

 

 

I am a prospective international student who wants to meet with someone from your recruitment team in my country. What advice have you for me?

Where we have had to cancel events or visits to overseas countries due to travel restrictions, we would be very happy to engage online through Skype, email or telephone. You can arrange to chat with us by emailing international@qmu.ac.uk.

I am an international applicant. If I need to start my course online, can I still take advantage of the Graduate Route visa?

The UK government has announced that students on Tier 4 visas commencing their studies in the 2020-21 academic year will be eligible for the new Graduate Route visa (formerly known as the post-study work visa) even if their courses is delivered initially through distance or blended learning.

Students starting their studies under these new conditions will still be eligible to apply for the new Graduate Route visa so long as they intend to transition to face-to-face learning as soon as circumstances allow and they arrive in the UK by 6 April 2021.

To find out more, click here or get in touch with us at international@qmu.ac.uk.

 

What if I am having difficulty making arrangements to be tested for my English language (IELTS)?

For applicants who need to be tested for their English language (IELTS or equivalent) we are aware that most test centres are currently closed. We know that test providers have stated their intention to offer additional testing slots when they reopen, but where it is not possible for you to sit an English Language Test in order to meet the conditions of your offer, the University will review your circumstances nearer to the start date of your programme. If you have any concerns, please contact the Admissions team.

I am due to start at the University and I am having difficulties obtaining my visa. What should I do?

For new students or those concerned about obtaining or renewing their visas, you should contact the International Team

What are the exceptions to the 14 September start of teaching date?

1. New year 1 entrants PDGE Secondary (Home Economics) - Induction will begin on 24th August with teaching commencing on 7th September.

2. Postgraduate programmes in the Business School and in the Institute of Global Health and Development - Induction will commence w/b 21st September, with teaching on those programmes beginning on 28th September.

3.Undergraduate programmes in the Business School – Induction will commence w/b 7th and 14th September, with teaching beginning w/b 21st September.

4. New year 1 entrants - The following programmes will commence on 13th January:

  • MSc Physiotherapy pre-registration
  • MSc Occupational Therapy pre-registration
  • MSc Art Psychotherapy (International)
  • MSc Music Therapy
  • MSc Audiology
  • MSc Speech and Language Therapy pre-registration

5. New year 1 entrants MA Stage Management will commence in April 2021.

What if I can’t get to the campus for 14 September, when teaching and learning begins?

Students who wish to begin their programme in September, but are unable to join us on campus for the beginning of the semester (e.g. because of issues related to their visa, quarantine or self-isolating, or travel delays due to late receipt of exam results) will be able to begin their studies online. If you are in this situation, please contact Registry at registry@qmu.ac.uk.

What support is available to students in these unusual times?

As QMU is a small university, with a strong community focus, students joining us can rest assured that they will receive strong personalised support, and we appreciate this support is needed more than ever at this time. Each student is assigned a personal academic tutor, and we offer a full range of support services ranging from effective learning to wellbeing, and from the library to careers. All services have been available online throughout the pandemic and will also be offered face to face whenever appropriate.

More about our Student Services

If I am unable to attend the campus when my course is due to start, will I be able to study remotely?

Yes. Students who are due to join us in January, but are unable to physically join us on campus straightaway (e.g. because of issues related to health, self-isolation, or caring responsibilities for others self isolating etc.) will be able to commence their studies online. If you are in this situation, please contact Registry at registry@qmu.ac.uk.

If I need to study remotely, will I be disadvantaged because I am unable to attend any on-campus learning activities?

No. We are putting steps in place to ensure that students unable to attend on-campus learning activities have the opportunity to engage in equivalent learning online. The nature of this activity will necessarily vary by programme, but it is likely to include, amongst other things, the ability to join on-campus group discussion activity virtually through our virtual learning environment (the Hub).

If I need to study remotely, will I still be able access Student Services support (finance, wellbeing, counselling, careers etc.)?

Yes. The University has continued to offer students remote access to its range of Student Services support since the lockdown started and will continue to do so for those students unable to come on to the campus when the campus reopens. You can use Student Central to view the resources, book online appointments and view current job vacancies. More detailed information on accessing specific Student Services support remotely is available within the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) FAQs for students.

What other learning resources will I have access to if I need to study remotely?

Our Library (LRC) resources and our Effective Learning Service (ELS) are both accessible remotely. The ELS will continue to offer advice and guidance on writing assignments and developing academic skills to students who need to study remotely.

I have an Independent Learning Plan (ILP), will that be modified to take account of any adjustments to the delivery of learning and teaching in semester one?

Yes. Where necessary, ILPs will be modified to take account of any necessary adjustments to learning and teaching activities in semester one, including for those students who are unable to come on to campus. Students with ILPs will be contacted by Students Services regarding this in due course.

How much timetabled on-campus teaching and learning will I be scheduled for in the first semester?

Current social distancing requirements mean that for health and safety reasons the overall number of hours of on-campus timetabled teaching and learning activity we are able to offer on the campus in semester one are reduced. The actual number of hours you will be scheduled for will vary depending on your level of study. All undergraduate level 1 students will receive 6 hours per week regardless of their programme. Levels 2-4 will receive between 2-4 hours per week. All postgraduate students in their first year of study will receive 5 hours of on-campus activity per week. This variation is to take account of students' different levels of familiarity with the University's approach to learning and teaching, its support systems and the requirements of individual programmes, and the extent to which students have already had the opportunity to form social networks with their peers. Digital learning opportunities (such as online lectures and online live discussion) will be provided to compensate for any reduction in standard levels of timetabled on campus learning.

What does physical distancing mean for the campus and how is it being mplemented?

Timetable planning is central to managing physical distancing on campus as it helps us manage the number of people on campus at any one time for taught, self-development and organised social activities.

We are fortunate in that our modern, airy campus is well suited to enabling physical distancing.

The specific physical distancing measures that we take will be in accordance with Scottish Government guidance and based on a full risk assessment.

Measures will include access control, one way routing, staggered starts to timetabled classes, breaks to enable cleaning etc.

Also factored into our planning is off-campus activity in terms of staff and student travel.

More information on physical distancing and campus life.

Are we considering the car parking requirements of those for those who wish to avoid public transport?

Through our timetable planning, we are spreading out activity across the day to spread the load on the car park and other facilities and thus maximise the availability of parking space.

What health protection measures are in place on campus?

We have a range of campus adaptations in place based on a full University-wide COVID risk assessment.

Specific measures will depend on government guidance at the time, but, for example, we have installed a thermal camera at the main entrance to monitor the temperature of people arriving on campus, we have one way systems, and sanitiser stations. Seating arrangements have been changed. We have also made adjustments to our ventilation systems to optimise air flow.

You can find out more on our Campus Life, Physical Distancing and Hygiene page.

How are you enabling social interaction for students on campus, and are students encouraged to spend time on campus?

This is the focus of the work being undertaken through our Student Experience Business Recovery Work Stream.

We are, of course, acutely conscious that student life is about much more than study. We also know that we must live up to our reputation for providing a friendly learning community, and are determined to do so.

While any requirements for physical distancing are changing the way we operate our on-campus Students’ Union, sports facilities and social spaces, we will do everything possible to maximise the facilities available to students.

More information on your student experience this academic year.

Are we prepared for any increase in COVID-19 infections?

Our plans are designed to be flexible so that we can react promptly to any second wave or cluster of COVID cases.

Rest assured  that we have been planning, and continue to plan, for any local outbreak, liaising with Health Protection Scotland, other Edinburgh institutions and council officials. This will help mitigate the impact of any local outbreak on our campus operations and University life, helping us to ensure that we can consistently provide our students with the education and support that they need and deserve.

 

I am an EU student with a course starting in January 2021. Will I need a visa to study in Scotland?

EU students commencing study in January 2021 will be required to have a Student Route visa. If you are an Irish national, see separate FAQ. Funding arrangements will remain the same as previously for students starting their course in academic year 2020/21, ie EU students will continue to be eligible for home fees at UG and PG level if commencing their course in January 2021. EU postgraduate students will also be able to access the tuition fee element of the Student Awards Agency for Scotland’s postgraduate loan, subject to the normal eligibility criteria, if starting at this time. (Ministers have confirmed that as a result of Brexit, higher education students from the EU attending university will no longer qualify for tuition fee support beyond AY2020-21.)

For more information on Brexit, including visa information, see our Brexit webpage.

I am an Irish national whose course is starting in January 2021. Will I need a visa to study in Scotland?

Irish nationals living in the UK and Ireland whose right to study and to access benefits and services will be preserved on a reciprocal basis for UK and Irish nationals under the Common Travel Area arrangement. So Irish students starting in January 2021 will not require a visa to travel or study in Scotland. Future arrangements for Irish students for the academic year 2021-22 under the Common Travel Area will be published in due course as this is subject to on-going discussion with the Scottish, UK and Irish Governments.

 

More FAQs

General coronavirus FAQs

FAQs for Students

FAQs for Staff

FAQs for International Students

Accommodation FAQs

Admissions Enquiries

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Admissions Enquiries

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Taught - Application Enquiries
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