Looking forward to the new academic year / 1 of 2

26 August 2021

Dear student

We hope you are enjoying your summer break. We are looking forward to welcoming you on to campus at Oxford Brookes in September.

We wanted to share information about the next academic year. This is so you know what to expect, how to prepare, what you’ll need to do and how things will work. There is lots to share with you, so we are spreading this over two emails. This is the first email which will cover your health and wellbeing, and academic life. Next week we will send another message covering your time on campus and in the community.

Much of this information is already on the Student Covid-19 webpages, which have been updated ready for the new academic year and will be refreshed regularly. Please do check them as they contain lots more detail than we can include in these emails.

Health and wellbeing

Your health and wellbeing are really important to us.Our priority is to deliver a high-quality student experience whilst minimising the risk of transmission of Covid-19 on campus. We will share further information about what we are doing on campus to keep you safe in our next email including what we’re asking you to do when you attend in-person teaching sessions.

We all have a personal responsibility to look after ourselves and each other. Whilst restrictions are lifting, we are aware that the pandemic is not yet over, so it is essential that we continue to take appropriate precautions to protect the health of our community.

You can help prevent an outbreak on campus by taking two rapid Covid-19 tests, three days apart before you travel to campus. Please get your home testing kits by ordering them online or collecting from a test site or a pharmacy participating in Pharmacy Collect. If you receive a positive test result before your return, please follow these instructions.

If you are travelling to University from overseas, we have more information on this on our Travel to the UK webpage. Please check it before you travel.

If you aren’t already registered with a local practice, remember to register with a GP when you arrive so that you can get medical help and support when you need it.

We strongly encourage all students to be vaccinated against Covid-19. If you haven’t yet had your first or second Covid-19 vaccination, please take up the offer of a vaccination before you arrive. Everyone over the age of 17 years 9 months can book their two vaccination appointments via the national NHS vaccination booking website. From 2 September you will also be able to book your vaccination at our pop-up NHS Covid-19 vaccination clinic which opens on 6 September on our Headington Campus.

If you have concerns about coming to campus, or you find it hard to adjust when you arrive, the Wellbeing team is here to help you - both online and face-to-face. In addition to the Wellbeing service, Togetherall offers free, confidential 24/7 support online for all Brookes students. Register with your Brookes login details for free access.

Academic life

We are really looking forward to welcoming you onto campus for in-person teaching - some of you will be returning and some of you will be arriving for the first time.

If you are an undergraduate student, you will be able to see your timetable in your Google Calendars from Friday 27 August. Postgraduate timetables will be available from Week 0, the week commencing Monday 13 September.

The majority of your teaching sessions will be in-person. You might notice that some, or all, of your lectures will be online. This is to avoid, where possible, large gatherings of people in teaching rooms.

It is very important that you arrive on campus in time for the start of teaching, which for most students is Monday 20 September. If you are an international student and your travel plans and/or quarantine arrangements mean that you are likely to arrive later than this, you must let us know as soon as you can. Any student who may miss the start of teaching should also let their Academic Adviser know about this.

We are planning for exams to be held in-person in Semester 1, but some may be held online. You will receive more information closer to the time.

We have updated a number of academic processes and policies - we ask you to read and digest these in detail before you arrive:

  • Recording teaching and academic contact sessions policy - recording of lectures to provide additional support to students will continue, but attendance at the timetabled lecture will also be expected.
  • Exceptional circumstances - the categories of exceptional circumstances have now changed in response to student feedback to cover: 24 hour (previously known as the Grace Period); seven-day (the time that students can self-certify); and 'longer than seven-day' extensions.
  • Resit policy - you no longer require a minimum mark (in other words, you no longer need to submit an attempt) to qualify for a resit.

More information about what to expect from September is on the Student Covid-19 webpages. If you have any further questions please contact the Covid Response Team at covid-19@brookes.ac.uk.

Best wishes

Anne-Marie Kilday

Professor Anne-Marie Kilday

Pro Vice-Chancellor Student & Staff Experience

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