Plans for 2020-21
24 July 2020
We are ready to return and welcome you back to campus in September. You will find updates and information about what to expect for your student experience in 2020/21 on these pages. We will continue to update these with new information as and when we can.
Planning your safe return to campus in autumn 2020
We will be open in September and we are expecting to welcome you back to our Reading campuses (Whiteknights and London Road) for the start of the autumn term on Monday 28 September, where possible.
We have developed a roadmap, setting out our plan for managing the gradual reinstating of our campus activities in a phased and careful way.
We are committed to ensuring you continue to benefit from all that university life has to offer. To provide you with the best possible experience, while protecting your health and safety, we will be doing some things differently this autumn.
Firstly, teaching will be through a combination of face-to-face and online activities, to provide you with a supportive learning environment while adhering to social distancing requirements.
We recognise, however, that your student experience is about so much more than just the course you are studying. That is why, alongside our teaching arrangements, we are adapting our campus facilities and services to provide you with a safe and supportive environment to study, live and socialise in. Although campus will initially feel different, we will provide opportunities for you to continue your personal development and make your time at university a fulfilling and memorable experience.
We will keep all our measures under close review and adjust as required to align with government advice and the needs of our students.
Teaching in the autumn term
We are pleased to confirm that the autumn term will start as planned on Monday 28 September, with this being the first week of teaching for the majority of undergraduate and taught postgraduate programmes.
We have carefully designed a blended learning environment, combining face-to-face interactive sessions and online core course content. We believe that this approach offers you the best quality learning experience in the current circumstances, for students on campus and for those who may need to study remotely temporarily.
In the autumn term, we will:
- Make all core course content available online
Content that would typically be delivered through large lectures will now be provided digitally, on Blackboard in most cases. This reduces the health risks from large groups in confined spaces and enables us to use teaching rooms for interactive sessions with smaller groups (see below). It also means that you can review the materials in your own time as often as you wish, wherever you are geographically based, and around any other commitments you may have.
- Provide regular interactive sessions on campus and online
Alongside the provision of online course content, we will schedule interactive sessions appropriate to the relevant discipline (for example, seminars and workshops), to enable you to develop and apply your understanding of the topic with your lecturer and classmates. In many cases these sessions will be face-to-face on campus, complemented by online interactive activities for those studying remotely.
We will continue to provide academic support through lecturer office hours (in person and online), individual or small group support from Academic Tutors and our Study Advice Team, complemented by our range of specialist welfare support services accessible both on campus and remotely.
We have designed this approach to offer the greatest flexibility. It gives you more control over your learning, with support from us depending on your individual needs, while also allowing us to respond to the latest developments and health requirements as the year progresses. We will constantly review our plans to ensure you receive the best education and university experience possible.
We hope this will help provide an overview of what you can expect for the autumn term. There are many more details that we are continuing to work on to support your student experience for the next academic year and we will keep you updated.
For further information, please see some of our frequently asked questions below.