2020 applicants
Welcome new students

Before you start

students sitting on Southend beach looking at the sea

Get ready for life at Essex

We can’t wait for you to join us, but don’t forget that to become an official Essex student, you’ll need to register first. Registration opens on Tuesday 1 September and you’ll get another email then with details of what you need to do. 

To help prepare you for your new life as an Essex student, we’ve put together some pre-arrival FAQs so you can get your questions answered and start planning from the comfort of your home. 

 

Pre-arrival information

How do I register if I am starting my degree online, and is there a deadline?

Registration open on 1 September. All new students are required to register with the University by the third week of October (depending on your course). From Friday 25 September you will be able to indicate whether you are starting your degree on campus or online on your myEssex student portal. This will remain live all year round so that you can update it at any point if your circumstances change.

Will there be any changes to the start date for my Undergraduate or Postgraduate study?

There are no changes to your start date, which can be found in your offer letter on your myEssex portal.

If you are an East 15 Acting School applicant, please refer to their website for updates on term information. 

What if I can't travel for the start of my course?

We know that some students may not be able to travel to our campuses for the start of the academic term in October, and that is okay.

Many of our courses will now be taught in a way that blends face-to-face classes with a range of online lectures, teaching, learning and collaborative support. We’re aiming to be as flexible as possible so if things change you can change your pathway any time.

These changes will allow you to start your course whether you are able to attend campus or not. That way, if restrictions apply or circumstances change, we can move to blended and online delivery, offering the flexibility for you to continue your studies uninterrupted, whatever the circumstances.

If none of these options are suitable, you can of course defer the start of your course. If you have paid a deposit we will refund it.

This page will be kept up to date with the most recent guidance and advice so as the start of term approaches please review these pages to check for updates. We will continue to follow national and international health guidance and will be sure to notify any affected applicants should alternative arrangements apply.

If you are an East 15 Acting School applicant, please refer to their website for updates on term information.  

Please note that the East 15 Acting School course deposit Terms and Conditions are different and can be read in full here

If I start online, when do I have to come to Campus?

Even if you are not able to travel to join us for the start of the year, you can still benefit from a transformational Essex education. We hope and expect that you will join us when you can to take full advantage of our on-campus offer, but if you need to study remotely, we will work with you to support you, whatever your circumstances.

Please note that whether you can study online for the whole year is dependent on what department and course you are applying for. To find out more please visit our department pages which have further details about how teaching will be delivered.

We appreciate that our students are living through changed circumstances, and we are absolutely committed to doing all we can to help you to continue learning through this period.

If you are an East 15 Acting School applicant, please refer to their website for updates on term information. 

If I'm travelling outside of the UK; how can I make sure I get to campus safely when I arrive?

We appreciate that many students may not wish to use public transport when they arrive in the UK. We are therefore in the process of making arrangements so that students will be able to travel from London UK airports by University-arranged coaches, adhering to any social distancing measures that are in place.

Once we have more information relating to this service, we will put this on this webpage and on the new students section of the website 

What if I have to self-isolate on arrival in the UK?

If you are travelling to campus from outside of the UK, you can arrive at your accommodation two weeks early for no additional cost in order to quarantine (either because you are arriving from a country where quarantine on arrival in the UK is required, or because you either wish to self-isolate on arrival as an extra precaution or have concerns your country may be placed on the UK quarantine list between now and the beginning of the academic term).

For a full list of countries which currently require quarantine on arrival please visit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-travel-corridors

The countries on this list are subject to change.

Your self-isolating accommodation will consist of a single bedroom within a cluster flat, where some facilities will be shared with other students in your household. 

In order for you to complete your self-isolation period in time for welcome week, your accommodation booking will start on either the 17th, 18th 19th or 20th September.  To make a booking please complete the booking form.  The accommodation team will then be in touch with your allocation and key collection information.

You must submit your booking request before Tuesday 15th September in order for us to accept your booking.

If your circumstances change and you have to cancel your quarantine booking, please notify us by emailing askthehub@essex.ac.uk as soon as possible.

Please note, this only applies to our Colchester and Southend Campuses.

Will there be any changes to the pre-sessional English courses?

Due to travel restrictions currently in place, all our pre-sessional courses will be delivered online so you are able to study on these courses from your home country. For the five-week course and the final five weeks or all the other pre-sessional courses, we are hoping that students will be able to study on campus, if they wish and are able to do so. We will be running these five weeks online for those students who need it.

For those students studying on our campus for the final five weeks, we are providing free accommodation.

What if I contract COVID-19 in my home country as I'm due to start in the UK?

If you contract COVID-19 before you are due to travel to the UK for the start of your course, you should not travel, and should follow the local health advice and guidance. You should wait for clear medical advice that you are no longer contagious before you consider travelling.

You should contact the University to let them know the situation.

Many of our courses will now be taught in a way that blends face-to-face classes with a range of online lectures, teaching, learning and collaborative support. These changes will allow you to start your course whether you are able to attend face-to-face teaching sessions during the academic year or not. Your learning will also be tailored to your needs; with flexibility for you to manage your studies.

If you are an East 15 Acting School applicant, please refer to their website for updates on term informatio

What would happen to my deposit if I become unable to start the University in autumn 2020 because of COVID-19?

If you are asked to pay a deposit to secure your place and scholarship, you should do so by the relevant deadline. Our refund policy will be applicable in any circumstances related to COVID-19 that might make you unable to join us this autumn.

Please note that the East 15 Acting School course deposit Terms and Conditions are different and can be read in full here

Do I have to start on/or return to campus this autumn?

Essex is a campus university, and we'll continue to offer a transformational on-campus experience from this autumn. The changes we have made to support you and protect your health and wellbeing mean that, for most of our courses, this will include blended learning – with lectures, classes and other teaching taking place both online and face to face. Much of this teaching will be offered “live” (even if online/ virtual) but will also be available to access at times that suit you. How long you are able to study online for is dependant on your department or course, so please check your department page for more details. 

We know that your learning experience is about more than just attending classes, and our campuses can provide you with all you need to make the most of your studies. This includes private space to study, in your on-campus study bedrooms as well as in PC labs and other spaces on our three campuses for self-study. We can also offer you access to laptops on loan and access to our library services; as well as enhanced wifi provision across our campuses.

The pandemic has provided an opportunity for us to rethink what really matters to our students in the current circumstances. We are taking the opportunity to adapt how we support you to enjoy a transformative student experience, whether you are studying on one of our three campuses, or wherever you are. We have been working in partnership with our Students’ Union to ensure that you can enjoy our clubs, societies, activities and services. We have built in flexibility to enable you to access support and activities, and to shape your experience around your life.

What if I can’t arrive this autumn?

We recognise that some students may have difficulty travelling to campus in time to start the academic year. So if for any reason you are unable to travel to campus to start the academic year, all teaching will be available virtually. This means that once you have completed your registration online you can start, or continue, your programme off-campus, wherever you are, with full flexibility to transfer to on-campus learning as soon as you are able to. In this way we will support you to study in a way that suits your needs in this difficult time. Our flexible approach is also designed to support you to continue learning if further outbreaks of infection occur during the year. This means you can join us in full confidence that you can continue and complete your programme of study.

Things are a little different for those studying at our East 15 Acting School. You can find out more information on the East 15 website.

What is the process for letting you know I won’t be arriving this autumn?

Whether you are an existing student who is returning to your studies or a new student, you should let us know, as soon as your plans are clear, if you intend to study remotely. From 25 September, you will be able to do this easily via your My Essex student portal. This will mean your timetable and student record are updated and we will know your plans.  We will communicate with you nearer the time about how to do this. The option to change your study arrangements will be available all year: you can update your status to let us know when you have arrived on campus.

Please note, that if you are studying at our East 15 Acting School, we can only offer remote learning from 5 October - 9 November 2020. After this period, the expectation is that you will be available to attend sessions on the relevant campus (unless there are any changes made to government guidelines that make this impossible).

How do I register and take part in welcome and induction activities if I intend to start my study remotely?

Whether you are able to start with us on campus or are studying remotely, all students will be able to register online from 1 September and to participate fully in our new online Welcome experience and induction with your Department or School. All students will receive information on welcome activities whether they are on campus or not.

What do I do when I am able to join you and travel to campus?

When you are able to travel to campus you should do so, making appropriate arrangements relating to quarantine if necessary. You should update your student portal when you arrive  so that we can adjust your timetable to enable you to take part in small group face to face teaching, with social distancing.

All new students must also attend a Right to Study check with your ID documents so we can confirm you have the right to study in the UK, and that your identity is correct. At this point, we’ll give you your student registration card.

How do I book accommodation?

If you are thinking about moving onto campus, either now, later in the term or even in January, you can still apply for accommodation now via our waiting list. Once you have accepted your offer, your room and key will remain available until you are ready to arrive and we will not charge you for your room until you have moved in.

All full-time fully-registered undergraduate students living at our Colchester or Southend Campus from October, are entitled to accommodation for the first year of study.

If you are a new student and your course does not officially start until January, then you can make an application when our January applications which are open now. We have a number of rooms reserved for our January arrivals, however, if we aren't able to offer you a room, then we’ll put you in touch with SU Homes, an agency run by our Students’ Union

Please note, we do not have student accommodation at our Loughton Campus.

Applying for a visa

You’ll need a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from the University in order to apply for a Tier 4 visa if you are an international student. The Admissions teams are issuing CAS as usual to applicants that they are confident meet all of the requirements, and they might ask you some additional questions as part of the process. Once you have your CAS it is valid for 6 months, giving you plenty of time to make your Tier 4 visa application, but you should let Admissions know if you do not think you will be arriving by the Latest Accept Date on your CAS.

Find out more about Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).

Visa requirements after 1 January 2021

European and Swiss students who travel to the UK on or after 1 January 2021 will need to apply for immigration permission to study, unless you already hold settled status. Irish students will continue to have the right to live and study in the UK after the UK leaves the EU.

Find out more about applying for a visa to study at the University of Essex following the new immigration rules from January 2021.

Will I be able to study off campus for the whole year?

Even if you are not able to travel to join us for the start of the year, you can still benefit from a transformational Essex education. We hope and expect that you will join us when you can to take full advantage of our on-campus offer, but if you need to study remotely, we will work with you to support you, whatever your circumstances.

Please note that whether you can study online for the whole year is dependent on what department and course you are applying for. To find out more please visit our department pages which have further details about how teaching will be delivered.

We appreciate that our students are living through changed circumstances, and we are absolutely committed to doing all we can to help you to continue learning through this period.

Please note, that if you are studying at our East 15 Acting School, we can only offer remote learning from 5 October - 9 November 2020. After this period, the expectation is that you will be available to attend sessions on the relevant campus (unless there are any changes made to government guidelines that make this impossible).

Under 18?

Our student communities pages are a great source of information about all the support and services that are available to you if you're under 18 and coming to Essex.

International student?

Whether you are arriving at our campuses straight away or if you need to study remotely for a short time, a warm welcome awaits you at Essex as soon as you are able to join us. We are proud to be a global community and we recognise that living and studying in the UK may be very different from your own country. Make sure you read all the guidance for new international students to help you arrive and settle in to your new life at Essex. 

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