Student statement for academic year 2020/21
We have now received and reviewed the latest Government guidance for universities.
In line with this guidance, from Monday 11th January we will be reopening Northampton Square Library and opening some additional bookable individual study spaces at Northampton Square and Bunhill Row until the lockdown is reviewed on Monday 15th February, to support you with your studies and assessments. The cafés on the ground floor at Northampton Square and Bunhill Row will also open for takeaway food and drink – you can find the opening times on the Student Hub.
Myddleton Street building will continue to be open for School of Health Sciences students on future critical worker courses. No other rooms or buildings on campus, including our prayer rooms, will be available for use during the national lockdown.
The new COVID-19 strain can pass more easily between people, so you should only come onto campus if you have scheduled in-person teaching or a particular reason for being on campus, such as inadequate study facilities at home.
If you do need to use a PC or study space, please ensure you book this before you come to campus as you must have an in-person teaching session or a booked study space to be on campus. While on campus you must carry your student ID card and wear a face covering (over the mouth and nose) at all times unless you are exempt.
As mixing in groups is not allowed, there will be no group study spaces available to book on campus – please continue to do any group work on Microsoft Teams or Zoom. If you have any questions about this, please contact your Course Office.
If you are a Postgraduate Research student and require specialist equipment which you cannot access from home, please contact your Research Supervisor.
Your School will communicate any course-specific information and exceptions with you.
What to do before you come to campus
- Book a COVID-19 test – to reduce the spread of the virus and keep all people on campus safe, we strongly encourage you to take a test and only come onto campus on the basis of a negative COVID-19 result. You can book free asymptomatic tests through the regular testing available in our partnership with the University of London
- Book a study space – you will only be allowed on campus if you have a booked space or an in-person teaching session
What to do while you are on campus
- Access Northampton Square through the side door next to the main entrance, and Bunhill Row and Myddleton Street through their main entrances
- Sign in using your ID number when you enter our buildings
- Use the study space or PC you have been allocated
- Wear a face covering at all times unless you are exempt. If you forget your face covering you can collect one from our reception desks.
- Give each other space
- Wash or sanitise your hands regularly
- Wipe down surfaces before and after use
If you have a COVID-19 test or a study space booked but will no longer be coming onto campus, please ensure you cancel it to allow other students, particularly future critical workers, to access it.
Wearing a face covering on campus
At the start of the academic year, we shared with all students our Covid-19 Community Agreement which focused on keeping City’s community safe. The new more transmissible strain of the Covid-19 virus means that this Agreement is more important than ever to help keep all students and staff safe on campus. We will now be requiring any individual on campus to wear a face covering (over the mouth and nose) at all times.
The exceptions to this position are
- where an individual is exempt and shows this by visibly wearing the exemption lanyard and
- when you are eating or drinking.
Face coverings are available at reception desks.
In light of the emergency circumstances in which the UK is currently operating we know that you will comply with this requirement. City staff have a responsibility to make sure campus is safe, and this includes authority to take action where an individual is not willing to comply with the face covering requirement.
Where there is unwillingness to comply, the individual will be required to leave the premises and may only return when wearing a face covering. If we have to ask a student to leave the premises on more than one occasion because they are unwilling to wear a face covering (and are not exempt), we will take disciplinary action.
Summary of 29th July statement
We are really looking forward to welcoming you all back to our community in September, and would like to share some further information on what you can expect in the new academic year.
How we'll deliver your studies
You may have recently received information from your programme about changes to how your course will be delivered in 2020-21. If you haven’t received this information don’t worry, your School will be in touch with you shortly to confirm programme arrangements for 2020-21. However, if you have any questions about this, please contact your Course Office or School.
We will be delivering the majority of teaching online, along with some small group activities in person. On courses where more time on-campus is needed to complete practical work due to PSRB requirements, we will arrange for specialist facilities such as clinical skills and engineering labs to be used safely, in a socially distanced way. Our staff have been working together to develop online teaching in new engaging and innovative ways and your School will share more information about your timetable for the first term by the end of August.
How we'll keep you safe on campus
We’re preparing our campus to welcome you back from the start of term to use study spaces and computers, where possible. The safety and wellbeing of our students, staff and visitors remains our top priority, and we are putting measures in place to comply with social distancing and hygiene regulations and keep everyone safe.
If you are travelling to our campus in the new academic year, please follow the latest travel guidance including, where possible, travelling at off-peak times, using bikes and walking from the main stations.
If you are feeling even a little unwell, please do stay at home. If you or a member of your household has any of the symptoms of the virus, please stay at home and get tested, to allow contact tracing of positive cases.
When you arrive on campus at the beginning of the 20/21 academic year:
- You will see signs and posters with up to date reminders on the current health and safety measures.
- We will be implementing social distancing on campus and, as on public transport and in shops in the UK, we will require face coverings to be worn whenever you may come into close contact with someone - for example, when moving around campus or within buildings, and in spaces where social distancing is difficult. If you are unable to wear a face covering due to a physical or mental illness or impairment, or a disability, please make this clear by wearing an exemption card. You can download and print an exemption card from the TfL website.
- There will be an enhanced cleaning programme, and surfaces will be wiped down on a regular basis. On our premises, air handling units will be switched to fresh rather than recirculated air and windows will be opened where possible to allow natural air in.
- The Northampton Square Library will be operating a track and trace system for anyone who accesses the Library, in line with guidance from the Department for Education. They are continuing to plan their service and opening hours and you can find the latest information on this in the Library Guide and on the Library webpages.
How we'll support you
Our teams and services across the University and Students’ Union have adapted their services and been working on ways to continue supporting you both on and off-campus in a number of ways including via technology, such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom.
Many of our services also anticipate being able to offer in-person booked appointments for those students who are on campus, in line with UK Government health and safety guidance, and will provide further information on this soon.
How we'll welcome you back to City
As a returning student, you will be able to make the most of many of our Welcome activities, which will be accessible online. We’re planning an extended Welcome this year, with opportunities to meet new people, ask questions and take part in interactive sessions and will publish the timetable on the Student Hub in the coming weeks.
How we'll help you make the most of your student experience
Student life is not just about your studies but also about continuing to make friends, socialise and get involved with University life. To help you continue taking part in the activities and opportunities at City, such as clubs, societies, volunteering and sport, we are working on plans with our Students’ Union, to adapt our approach to the current circumstances and use online platforms to supplement what will be possible to deliver safely in person.
CitySport is also preparing our building and programmes to ensure they’re Covid-19 Secure. We are planning to reopen from Monday 14th September, so you can make the most of the facilities in a safe and socially distanced way, and will provide further information on this soon.
Summary of 11th June 2020 statement
Start of term and 2020-21 academic year
We can confirm that we will be starting the academic year on the following dates:
- Welcome Week: Monday 21st September
- Teaching beginning for the majority of courses: Monday 28th September
- Professional Law programmes (LPC and BVS): Monday 7th September
- School of Health Sciences programmes: Start dates will remain as usual. Your School will be in touch with further details.
- Cass Postgraduate programmes: The School will be in touch to confirm your start date and details about your programme.
We will be ready to deliver online the teaching that would usually take place in large groups, combined with some small group teaching on campus. All small group teaching will also be available online. We will resume other campus activities as soon as restrictions ease and we are able to do so safely.
We plan to open parts of our campus, such as study areas and some classrooms for limited access from September 2020. We're working on how we might reopen some areas of the University, such as sections of the Library, to students who need to use them for their studies before September. The health and safety of our students and staff remains our top priority and we are putting appropriate measures in place including:
- Carrying out thorough risk assessments for all areas of the campus and mapping capacity in line with social distancing requirements
- Putting one-way systems into place where possible
- Arranging seating areas so people can socialise safely
- Installing hand sanitation stations across our buildings
- Ensuring appropriate cleaning programmes are in place
- Adding clear signage about social distancing to the entrances and inside our buildings
- Encouraging the use of face coverings on campus
- Purchasing safety screens for our reception desks.
Teaching and Learning for the 2020/21 academic year
We are currently working to deliver the majority of teaching online for the 2020/21 academic year until we are able to resume our usual campus activities safely. We will deliver this by:
- Providing your lectures and core content digitally so you can access them from home and review them at your own pace.
- Offering face to face interactive sessions with smaller groups of students and staff where possible, which will also be available online.
- Arranging for specialist facilities such as clinical skills and engineering labs to be used safely, in a socially distanced way, where on-campus practical work is required.
- Ensuring that an online equivalent of any in-person teaching is provided, as we appreciate that some of you will be unable to attend any activities on campus due to travel, health or other reasons.
- Remaining flexible in our approach - whilst we are planning to be able to deliver teaching online for the whole academic year, we will also plan to deliver classes in person if we’re able to later in the year.
We know many of you will have questions about your studies in the Autumn term. We would like to assure you that the University remains committed to continuing to deliver your studies in the 2020/21 academic year. The health and safety of our students and staff remains our top priority. How we start the new academic year will depend on UK Government guidance - at this stage, we are therefore considering a range and combination of options, including programme delivery online, returning to campus for certain classes and potentially a slightly later start date to term.
We anticipate more clarity on the situation in the UK and internationally in the coming days and weeks. This will inform what teaching will be possible on campus, and from when. Regardless to any changes in delivery, the University is committed to teaching your programme and we will provide you with the support and guidance you need.
We will continue to update you as our plans develop.