School of Arts, Social Sciences & Management - Short Course Handbook 2021/22



We are delighted you will be undertaking a short course with Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh, and hope that you enjoy it and find your learning experience both a positive and useful one

Here at Queen Margaret University our high-quality learning and teaching is supported and complemented by our research activity and our specialist research centres have gained worldwide recognition. Founded in 1875, the institution has always been driven by the highest ideals and purposes, focusing on contributing in practical ways to improving the quality of life and serving the community.

QMU offers a variety of short courses, full details of which can be found on our website. Some of the university’s short courses are delivered face-to-face on campus while others are online. In either situation we will use a variety of delivery formats such as online discussions, seminars and group work.

This handbook provides you with essential information about our University (QMU) and the facilities, services and support available to you as a short-course student of QMU. You will receive separately information on your actual short course, its structure,content, assessment etc., from your short-course tutor.

We have taken the greatest of care to ensure the information contained within this handbook is correct, however, some systems and procedures do change from time to time and may vary from those stated.

QMU provides a vast range of electronic information, and throughout this handbook you will find relevant links for further information which can be obtained from our University website and other sources of information.

Please remember QMU staff are here to help and support you, so if you need any help, guidance or support please do not hesitate to ask your short course tutor in the first instance.


Currently the University is operating under particular restrictions arising from the Coronavirus pandemic. If your short course requires you to physically attend the QMU campus you will be required to observe all guidance issued by the University concerning the health and safety of students and staff. Regular updates can be found on the University website

Section 1 - The Essentials


The first thing you will be asked to do once you complete the online enrolment form for your chosen short course is to matriculate online (i.e. formally register). By matriculating, you are confirming that you agree to the University’s regulations, policies and codes of conduct (note: it is your responsibility to read these) and it will give you access to QMU’s online facilities which you will need for your short course. Please ensure you have matriculated in advance of the course start date.

You will receive an email from our Registry department providing you with the information on how to complete the short, online matriculation process. Once this is done, you will receive your QMU login and QMU email account. Your QMU student number is also your username for logging into our systems.

If QMU staff or your short course tutor need to contact you, it will be via your QMU email address. You may find it useful to set-up mail forwarding to either your personal or work email.


If there is a fee for your short course, this must be paid for in advance of the course commencement date.

Section 2 - IT, Tutor and Learning Resources & Support

Tutor Support

Each short course has a tutor (or tutors) who may be contacted by email in the event you have any questions. Tutors normally aim to respond to student queries within 3 working days. One hour of tutor support is available to you.

Other support

QMU has an Effective Learning Service to assist with various study skills such as active reading, reflective writing, critical thinking, making effective notes, writing and structuring assignments. All documents are accessible online at Effective Learning Services web page 

Learning Resource Centre (LRC)

The Learning Resource Centre (LRC) - this is the library. There are a wide range of services available, including information relating to borrowing, study skills, databases, e-journals and e- books through the LRC’s website at: Learning Resource Centre web page

Assist Help Desk

The Assist Help Desk (situated just inside the LRC) deals with all student IT enquiries such as password issues, problems accessing our online facilities etc. Please contact them on Assist Email Address providing them with details of your issue, your name and student number. Alternatively, you can drop by their desk and speak to someone directly.

Student Services

Student Services,which includes the disability service, are able to provide mainly online support for students studying short courses at QMU. Support is accessed via Student Central that covers:

  • Mental Health Support (Togetherall)
  • Disability support – online support for accessible assistive technology

Disability Services

Where students need particular adjustments related to their disability, QMU will provide the following:

  • Needs Assessment
  • Individual Learning Plan with adjustments suitable for student (ILP)
  • Assistive Technology training and demonstration

Disability Advisers can provide information, support and guidance to students with specific learning difficulties e.g. dyslexia, mental health difficulties, sensory impairments, mobility difficulties, autistic spectrum disorders and medical or other conditions which can impact on their ability to access learning that is proportional to the short course you are taking.

If you consider you may have additional needs and would like to find out what support is available as a short course student, you can contact the Disability Service Email Address To book an appointment with the relevant Disability Adviser or to find out more information about the Disability Service please visit our Student support site,Student Central.


HUB is QMU's virtual learning environment. This is where the materials for your short course will be located and is where you will submit your assignment and receive your feedback and result.

Further information including an introductory video, and details about the mobile app are at: HUB - Blackboard Learn

QMU/Student Portal

The QMU Student Portal can be accessed via a quick link at the top right hand side of the front page of the website. Provisional grades for marked assignments are made available on the Student Portal, as well as easy access to information regarding public transport, timetabling, the extenuating circumstances application process etc. You may also change your contact details via the Student Portal.

Submitting your Assignments Online

Online submissions of assignments for assessment are made via the Hub. Please look for the “Assessment Area”, where you fill find the following instructions regarding how to submit.

To submit your final work for marking you must submit it in the Assessment Dropbox using Google Chrome. Submitting your work in the Similarity Checker Tool does not count as a submission.
Once you have submitted in the Assessment Dropbox you will be sent an email receipt to your QMU email address confirming you have successfully submitted, please retain this for future reference. You will not receive an originality report upon submission. To receive an originality report prior to submission, process your work

through the Similarity Checker Tool.

Please ensure that you have kept a copy of your submission as QMU will be unable to provide copies of submitted work.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Only do the following when you have completed your assignment and are ready to submit to prevent the screen from timing out.

  1. Read and complete all the following. Failure to do so may result in being recorded as a non-submission
  2. Click “View/Complete” in the dropbox
  3. When prompted for ‘Assignment title’ ONLY type in your QMU matriculation number.
  4. Attach your final document
  5. Click ‘Complete’
  6. Once the file has uploaded select ‘Confirm’

Alternatively, log into the Hub and follow this link: Assessments – HUB Induction (Students) 

Extenuating Circumstances/Applying for Extensions to Deadlines

It is accepted that, from time to time, circumstances beyond a student’s control may affect
her/his ability to undertake assessment on time, or may affect her/his performance in
assessment. Full details on how to apply for extenuating circumstances can be found via a link
on the Student Portal or on the QMU website.
Accessing Your IT Account When Away from QMU

Information on how to log into the QMU network from off campus is available from the Working Off Campus section on the IT Services website

Logging into the network in this way will give you access to all applicable software, library resources and your files, as if you were logging in on campus.

Closure of IT Account

After you complete your short course, your IT account will be closed after six weeks. This will ensure that you have time to view your results and transfer any important items.

Printing, Photocopying, Scanning – Multifunctional Devices (MFDs)

Printing, photocopying and scanning facilities are provided by MFD units. MFDs are located around the LRC and other key sites on campus. You can use your student smartcard to pay for and release printing from the MFDs.

Student ID Cards (Smartcards)

Smartcards are available for those students requiring to come onto campus. Please follow the instructions for smartcard production on completion of the matriculation process. Smartcards can be posted to an address of your choice.

Smartcards are necessary on campus for the following:

  • controlled access to the building, and areas within it, that are restricted to certain groups
  • as an access card for borrowing items from the Learning Resource Centre (LRC)
  • purchasing print credit, food or other items from the canteen/shop
  • to register your attendance at on campus teaching activity

Smartcards must be worn visibly at all times on campus as this is your formal identification.

Section 3 - Access to Professional/Administrative Staff & Student Service

In some instances you may need to contact our professional/administrative staff, for example:

For any administrative query relating to your short course: our School Office (

If you are on campus, you can generally speak to someone from these areas in person, or alternatively you can email them.

Section 4 - How your short course result is managed

Boards of Examiners

If the short course you are undertaking is credit bearing, your mark(s) from your formal assessment(s) are required to be reviewed by a Board of Examiners under the University’s academic regulations. Information relating to the QMU Board of Examiners 

Assessment marks and feedback for postgraduate assessments are normally disseminated within a maximum of 20 working days of the assessment submission. Working days equate to Monday to Friday, excluding University closure days.

If you pass your formal assessment for your short course, you will receive a Queen Margaret University transcript along with a Certificate of Study (if your course is credit bearing) or Certificate of Attendance (if the course is not credit bearing). Your hard copy transcript and certificate are normally issued within 1 month of the date of confirmation of results by the Board of Examiners and will be sent to your home address.

If you fail your formal assessment, you will normally be given the opportunity to re-submit. Full details of QMU Assessment Regulations

Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism

Plagiarism together with other forms of academic dishonesty such as impersonation, falsification of data, computer or calculation fraud, examination room cheating and bribery, are considered an act of academic fraud and is an offence against University discipline see Regulations Governing Discipline 

Plagiarism and the use of the ‘Turnitin Plagiarism Checker Tool’

Plagiarism occurs when someone copies or reproduces another person’s words or ideas and presents them as their own with no proper acknowledgement via citation and referencing. In various universities students (and staff) have been heavily penalised where they have been found to have done this. To ensure that you are not at risk of being accused of plagiarism you must always declare all the sources from which you have obtained material or ideas.

QMU provides an academic resource called Turnitin to allow students to consider how they use secondary literature – this includes material from the internet, journals magazines, books and any other form of printed material. This enables you to check your own work for evidence of poor academic practice. It is your responsibility to engage with the Turnitin Plagiarism Checker Tool, which is located in the Hub site for your short course under the Plagiarism and Referencing area.


QMU requires students use the standard Harvard referencing system; information on which is available via Cite them right online - Home ; which can be accessed using your QMU log in details.

Section 5 - Student Union 

As a QMU short course student you are automatically a member of the Students' Union during your period of study. The Students’ Union (SU) is a registered charity and works to ensure that all students have the best university experience. A team of Officers is elected each year to lead the SU and make sure that students' views are represented to the university and beyond.

The SU office is just upstairs from Maggie's, the Students' Union bar & café, which is a good place to relax or to get to know your fellow short course participants.

If you’ve got any questions or suggestions, you can contact them via Student Union Email AddressYou can also check out their website and find them on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @QMUSU.

Section 6 - Further Information 

Health & Safety Arrangements

The undernoted are a brief summary of general, whole campus, arrangements. When you enter your selected specialism, your tutors will give additional advice and guidance relevant to your field of study. Adherence to the health and safety policies and procedures laid down by the University, and by your School, is required by all students.

Your Programme Leader has access to the relevant health and safety documentation that detail our current policy and procedures – should you need access please ask them. Should you have any health and safety related concerns, you should raise these with your Programme Leader in the first instance.

Advice regarding health & safety matters can be obtained from the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Team via . Please take time to read the following Health & Safety information.


QMU is committed to providing a safe and healthy working environment for its staff, students and visitors.

QMU expects all students to:

Take care of yourself and those who may be affected by what you do here on campus, Co-operate with QMU on all health and safety matters, Not interfere with any item which has been provided in the interest of safety, report any hazards or suspicious activities, and
Report all accidents and incidents you become aware of.




Building Cladding

Following the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower, London Queen Margaret University reviewed its estate in respect of ACM cladding and has confirmed, through desktop review and localised inspection, that Queen Margaret University does not have any buildings with ACM cladding.

Section 7 - Various Other Important Information

Cultural Considerations – Online Communication

We are proud of QMU’s diverse student body and ask you to recognise that the challenges of on-line communication can be magnified in classes of native and non-native speakers. A non- native speaker can easily feel uncomfortable among native speaking online communicators. The University asks you to recognise that different cultures bring different points of reference, different understandings of humour and different expectations of online communication, so:

  1. Avoid using complicated language, terminology, slang, idioms or local acronyms

  2. Be aware of differences in date formats and measurements

  3. Be careful with sarcasm and humour, and avoid ridicule

  4. Allow extra time for responses, especially in chats

  5. Remember that language, fluency and intelligence are very different things

  6. Admit mistakes and apologise

Freedom of Information, Data Protection and Complaints Handling Procedure

Freedom of Information

Compliance with the Freedom of Information (Scotland) 2002 Act (FoISA) at Queen Margaret University is coordinated by the Division of Governance and Quality Enhancement.

FoISA intends to encourage public organisations to become more open and accountable. QMU strives to be as open as possible in its attitudes, operations, policies and processes, and is pleased to share information about its activities.

You can find more guidance on University procedures in compliance with the Act at:QMU Data Protection 

Data Protection

The Data Protection Act 2018 came into force in March 2018 and implements the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) into UK Law. This Act applies to information about individuals, known as "personal data". Queen Margaret University needs to process and retain certain personal data, for example about its staff and students, to fulfil its purpose and to meet its legal obligations to funding bodies and government.

You can find more guidance on University procedures in compliance with the Act at:QMU Data Protection

Complaints Handling Procedure

The University has a Complaints Handling Procedure 

The procedure has three stages: frontline resolution, investigation and external review. If a student has a complaint, they should discuss this with someone in the area which the student wishes to complain about (for example, for a complaint relating to speech and hearing sciences, this should be discussed with the Programme Leader or Module Coordinator for the module concerned). The complaint will be considered under frontline resolution (unless complex) and a response will usually be given within 5 working days. If the complaint is complicated, it is the student’s choice to take it to investigation stage immediately or it may be referred to the investigation stage by the person the student determined to discuss the complaint with at frontline resolution. Should the complaint be considered under the investigation stage, a response will normally be received within 20 working days.

Any queries about the complaints procedure or any complaints written on the Complaints Form may be emailed to QMU Complaint Email Address