From the 4 January the government confirmed that, in response to the increased COVID-19 infection rate and pressure on the NHS, we are now in a third national lockdown.

We know the next few weeks could be challenging but the University is here to support you during this time.

The government has confirmed that students (apart from the few programmes that are exempt) should remain where they are living, wherever possible and start their semester/trimester online. This will be until at least mid-February.

Only those students who are on the following programmes should return to face-to-face on-campus learning as timetabled and be tested twice, upon arrival or self-isolate for ten days:

  • Medicine
  • Health and Social Care
  • Teacher Education
  • Social work

Please take time to check you know what is expected. For full details on Government guidance click here.

Please note this webpage will be continually updated with the latest information throughout this lockdown. 

Unless you are in the group of students able to travel back to university for face-to-face teaching from January you should stay where you are and access course content online.

If you have already booked travel outside of your University’s stated return to campus dates, you should consider delaying if travel arrangements can be rearranged without undue cost.

Students returning to the UK from overseas should check additional entry requirements and restrictions that have been introduced due to COVID-19 before travelling to the UK.

Anyone arriving in England from 15 February will need to either:

What you need to do depends on where you have been in the 10 days before you arrive in England.

Students arriving from all international destinations will be required to:

  • take a coronavirus (COVID-19) test and get a negative result during the 3 days before you travel
  • book and pay for a travel test package, which will include COVID-19 tests to be taken on or before day 2 and on or after day 8 of your quarantine. This costs £210
  • complete a passenger locator form with details of where you will home quarantine when you arrive and the travel test package booking reference number

It is also important that international students consider the travel advice in place from their home country, including whether or not the country has closed their borders to departures to and arrivals from the UK. More information is available in Department for Education guidance and on the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office’s travel advice page

The guidance regarding postgraduate research students is that you should continue to work from home where possible to do so. However, those researchers who require access to specialist university facilities (such as laboratories) for their work should be able to access those facilities.

The university will be opening some of our campus buildings and facilities including libraries, laboratories and the Graduate College study spaces in Erasmus (Canterbury, North Holmes Road campus) to support the essential delivery of learning, teaching and research where this is permitted by the government. While research students can access these facilities, the University is, advising research students to work from home wherever they can.

With regard to laboratories, permission should be sought from your Head of School before accessing facilities. Postgraduate research students may request access to check the viability of samples, or retain calibrations of essential equipment. This should be done by working alone and in line with previous permissions/risk assessments. Research students should not bring in external clients or work with others in a lockdown.

Our priority is to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of all our students while on placements.

Your programmes are in close communication with our partners in the health, social care and education to support your placements in what is a challenging time.

Your programme teams will communicate with you directly in relation to any placement arrangements that are different to those originally planned.

  • For an update on health and social care placements following the announcement of a national lockdown click here- 7 January 2020
  • For an update on NMC Emergency standards click here - 15 January 2021
  • For an update on student employment of 3rd year nursing students click here - 19 January 2021

 

Protecting your academic outcomes

We know this is an anxious time for everyone and appreciate that the national lockdown may have an impact on your personal circumstances and ability to engage with your learning and assessments.  

We remain committed to protecting your academic outcomes during this time and have worked with the Students’ Union to respond to lockdown in a compassionate and fair way, which supports your academic success and maintains the integrity of your degree award at a national standard.

Christ Church is proud of how it supports its students to succeed, through its procedures and regulations, being recognised as sector leaders in what it already currently provides.

We have maintained the improvements made last year in response to COVID-19 such as take home exams and have designed our blended learning provision to provide our students with an excellent education experience both on campus and online.

In addition, we are pleased to confirm a range of new measures to recognise the specific challenges of this lockdown. We also recognise that some programmes may be impacted more than others, such as where some access to key resources or facilities has not been possible and are enabling programmes to make appropriate modifications to assessments to respond accordingly.

Click here to see the full package of support available - both the existing support and procedures that are currently in place, as well as changes we have introduced.

We will continue to review the situation to make sure our approach remains responsive to the changing situation and that the measures in place meet all our students’ needs.

This academic year we have developed our blended learning provision to ensure our students have an excellent education experience both on campus and online. Whilst many of you will be unable to experience on campus teaching at the moment, we are continuing to ensure that the online delivery of your programmes is of highest quality and you have access to the digital resources that you need.

We are offering support to students who are unable to access the right IT equipment for them to digitally engage with their programme. In addition, we have recently launched the Student App Store from which you can easily download your programme software for free.

A new Digital Code of Conduct has been approved by the University to support your online engagement. The Code aims to ensure that participants in any online event organised by the University, such as webinar, video conference, online chat, or discussion forum, benefit from the activity and are not subject to abuse or discrimination in the digital environment.

See further information below regarding online study support. .

Following the latest government guidance around the national lockdown we want to reassure you that we are working to keep to our commitment of providing you with your Individual Student Timetables (ISTs) one week before the start of your teaching.

Those students, who are on the following programmes, are allowed by government to return to campus for essential face-to-face teaching and assessments as already timetabled or being timetabled:

  • Medicine
  • Health and Social Care
  • Social work

Teacher Education students are also allowed on to campus for essential purposes but their learning and teaching activities are currently scheduled online.

The government has confirmed that all other students should remain for now where they are living, wherever possible, and start their semester/trimester 2 online. This will be reflected in your updated timetables.

We are scheduling a return to blended learning for all students, not on the programmes listed above, from 8 March. If you have practice-based teaching or assessments that require you to use specialist on-campus facilities, then these will be prioritised in the timetables’ design. Please remember that all students are expected to take asymptomatic COVID-19 tests on their return to campus.

Please note that this is all subject to further government guidance, which all universities are expecting to receive in mid-February. However, we feel it is important to plan ahead – so we can remain flexible and responsive to the changing situation, while ensuring we continue to deliver an outstanding education and keep our community safe.

We are committed to communicating any adjustments to your timetable in a timely way and providing you with enough notice to plan your return to campus. In the meantime, if you have any questions please contact your Programme Team.

Support

From 25 January, i-zone, Library and IT will be providing virtual support from 9am – 8pm Monday – Friday and 11am – 4pm at weekends.

This is in recognition of the different types of support students may need during this lockdown, with many busy with childcare and caring responsibilities in the day, as well as many of our students being on placements at this time.

All service will be offering email support, but i-zone will also be offering telephone and live chat throughout these times.

 

Email

Telephone

i-zone

i-zone@canterbury.ac.uk

01227 922222

Library

library.canterbury@canterbury.ac.uk

01227 782352

IT

it-service@canterbury.ac.uk

 

As we come out of lockdown, we will review our services to ensure that we continue to meet the changing needs of our students.

If you need help with your studies, there are plenty of online resources and support available to you:

  • Your Digital Library is a gateway to online learning resources accessible anytime and anywhere. Expand your mind, increase your knowledge, and enhance your learning through e-books, journals, databases, research, multimedia and subject guides.
  • Learning Skills Hub - develop your skills & knowledge through a series of modules and access a wealth of resources specific to your year group and Faculty. You can also connect with your specialist Learning Developer and Learning & Research Librarian who can offer you personalised support.
  • SkillsforStudy- A free resource available to all students. Whether you are looking for tips on how to improve your writing skills or guidance on referencing, these interactive online modules make it easy for you to get to grips with a range of essential study skills.
  • The CCCU Student App Store is your central hub from which you can find software to download or access on your personal device. It includes all of your familiar items such as Microsoft Office and SPSS to engineering packages such as Autodesk.
  • If you’re looking for ways to do group work why not check out Microsoft Teams– a software package designed to aid collaboration and make group work simple.
  • If you’re looking for someone who can help you improve your academic skills, help you develop strategies, share hints and tips on how to prepare for assessments or be your study buddy, then connecting with a student peer mentor might be for you. You can connect with them via email or MS Teams.

We are offering support for students who are unable to access the right IT equipment for them to digitally engage with their programme.

During these uncertain times it is important to look after your wellbeing and mental health. The University has a range of support available:

  • Togetherall is a free 24/7 online support service where you can go if you’re feeling down or struggling to cope with anything. Whether you want to speak to peers or a counsellor, there will be someone there every minute of every day.
  • Student Space is a new online resource to help students find the wellbeing support they need during coronavirus.

You may also be looking for ways to look after your physical wellbeing, and although the Sports Centre is closed, Christ Church Sport and Active Health is here to help:

  • Our online StudyFit programme is designed to use physical activity to enhance mental, as well as physical, wellbeing. You can arrange an online meeting with a StudyFit Adviser who can help design a bespoke physical activity programme just for you and your situation.
  • You can join our range of online fitness classes. Our University fitness instructors are working closely with the team of OurParks instructors, delivering a range of classes including Stretch & Flex, BoxFit, Pilates, Dance, Yoga and more. Gaining access to the classes is easy, simply visit the OurParks webpage and signup for a free account.

The government has recognised that in these exceptional circumstances some students may face financial hardship and in addition to existing hardship funds has made available to universities further one-off resources to support those students most in need.

If you have any financial concerns or difficulties, please speak to our Student Wellbeing Advisers who can discuss with you what support is available and guide you through the easy applications process. The advisers also provide virtual Drop-ins, from Monday- Friday, between 12 noon and 1pm, via Blackboard if you want further information or to have an initial chat.

We are also offering support for students to access the essential IT equipment or broadband for your studies.

If you have symptoms or test positive for Covid-19 you will have to self-isolate for 10 days.

We are here to support you throughout your self-isolation, ensuring you can stay safe, well and continue with your studies as much as possible. Click here for details.

If you have an extremely vulnerable clinical health condition you are now advised to study from home and not to go onto campus. Please contact Student, Support Health and Wellbeing via email studentwellbeing@canterbury.ac.uk, so that they can discuss your needs and liaise with you and your programme team on what adjustment may need to be put in place for you to engage with your studies safely.

If you live with someone who is clinically extremely vulnerable, but you are not clinically extremely vulnerable yourself, you should still attend your timetabled learning and teaching on campus and online.

A definition of extremely clinically vulnerable can be found here. Individuals in this group will have been identified through a letter from the NHS or from their GP.

The University recognises that the requirements of staying at home may, unfortunately, increase the likelihood that individuals may experience domestic or relationship abuse. This can be mental, emotional, financial or psychological, not simply physical.

Please do not suffer in silence. The following organisations are here to help:

  • National Domestic Abuse Helpline, available 24 hours a day on 0808 2000 247
  • For non-emergency support and safety planning call Kent & Medway Victim Support on 0808 16 89 111 / email kent.vart@victimsupport.org.uk or use live chat bit.ly/VS-livechat if it’s safe to do so
  • During the lockdown opportunities to make a call safely to seek help may be limited. Refuge has a web form which can be used to request a safe time for a call from a member of the expert helpline team.
  • National LGBT+ Domestic Abuse Helpline, 0800 999 5428 Email: help@galop.org.uk
  • Respect Phoneline, 0808 8024040
  • Women’s Aid. Offer guidance and services including live chat, safety advice and guidance on how to clear your tracks.
  • Men’s Advice line. Men’s Advice Line offers information for male victims: 0808 801 0327
  • SafeLives. A guide for victims and survivors of domestic abuse.

It is important to remember that the police continue to treat domestic abuse as a priority in these challenging times. If you need immediate support please call the police on 999 if it is an emergency (101 if a non-emergency) or contact your local GP.

We may be apart but that does not mean you cannot stay connected to the Christ Church Community.

You can connect to a peer mentor via email or MS Teams so that you can share experiences and advice with another student.

Why not join the Students' Union Facebook Group, a great way to stay in touch and join in a range of online events.

Campus

The government has confirmed that universities are allowed to open some essential facilities to support the teaching and learning of those who are allowed on campus. 

Augustine House Library and study spaces (including PCs and Macs) can be accessed for essential use by those from the small number of exempt programmes and students with certain exceptional circumstances- please see below. Please note that you will need to book in advance.

Salomons Institute Library is currently open Monday, Wednesday and Friday each week. You will need to book in advance of your visit.

Drill Hall Library are offering students an essential usage service only, for details click here.

When on campus you must follow the latest government guidelines including social distancing, wearing a mask at all times inside university buildings, washing hands regularly, sanitising work stations and keeping rooms well ventilated by opening windows.

Wherever possible, students should remain where they are currently living and should not travel to access university facilities until the resumption of their on campus teaching.

Campus facilities can be accessed for essential use by those small number of exempt programmes allowed on campus for teaching– Medicine, Health and Social Care, Teacher Education and Social Work.

In addition, they can also be accessed by

  • international students who have remained in the UK and those who have already arrived
  • those who have remained in their university accommodation over the winter break
  • those who have returned to university accommodation in exceptional circumstances, for example because they are without access to appropriate study spaces or facilities
  • those requiring additional support, including those with mental health and wellbeing issues
  • commuter students, on an exceptional basis, for example because they do not have access to appropriate study spaces or facilities in their usual accommodation
  • researchers and research students who require access to specialist facilities for their work. If research students can work from home, they are encouraged to do so

The Government is expecting all students to be tested at the point they return to university to help stop the spread of the virus and protect our community. 

You should have 2 tests, each 3 days apart, and limit social interactions with other students until a negative test is confirmed. If you do not get tested, you should self-isolate for 10 days, to reduce the risk of transmission between home and university.

You do not need to take a test if you have tested positive within the last 90 days.

You will need to book your test in advance and only attend if you have no symptoms of COVID-19.

The advice is to, where possible, test locally before travelling or with your placement provider. You can also book a test with us in Canterbury and Medway here.

When on campus your health and safety is our priority. We have a range of measures in place to provide a COVID secure environment.

However, now more than ever, with a more virulent strain of the COVID-19 virus it is important that when on campus you follow the latest guidelines. This includes:

  • not come on to campus if you have symptoms of COVID-19
  • social distancing including following one way routes and signage
  • wearing a mask at all times inside university buildings
  • washing hands regularly
  • sanitising work stations
  • keeping rooms well ventilated by opening windows

Face Coverings

Face coverings are to be worn by staff, students and visitors on campus when inside any University building, with the following exceptions:

  • When an activity cannot be performed with a face covering and additional precautions are identified through a local risk assessment
  • you cannot wear a face covering for health, age or equality reasons, as detailed in the latest Government guidance.
  • When eating and drinking, seated at 2m social distance from others
  • Student flats are not included, however face coverings should be worn in communal areas outside of flats.

While on campus, this means you must wear a face covering even if you are:

  • seated and more than two metres away from another person
  • at a service counter which has a screen protecting you

 

 

Accommodation 

Unless you are in the group of students able to travel back to university for on campus teaching from January (see above), you should stay where you are and follow national lockdown rules.

Any students who stayed at their university accommodation over the winter break or who have returned but won’t be starting on campus teaching in January, should remain where they are and should get tested straight away or self-isolate for ten days should they choose not to.

However, you may return to university in exceptional circumstances if you do not have access to appropriate alternative accommodation, facilities or studying space, or you need to return for health or safety reasons.

You should not travel back to your university accommodation to collect any of your belongings unless absolutely necessary. For example, for any items required for your online learning or medical equipment.

We have emailed all students in Canterbury Christ Church University accommodation to reassure them that, in recognition of the current government travel restrictions and the impact this has on their ability to access their accommodation, we will be looking to provide an appropriate and fair rebate on their accommodation fees for this lockdown period. 

Pier Quays accommodation in Medway is owned and operated by Unite, a private provider. They have announced their own rent reduction scheme and will be contacting their student tenants individually.

We continue to support the work being done by Christ Church Students' Union to represent the interests of our students in private rental accommodation.

Student Finance England (i.e. the Student Loan Company) has confirmed they will continue to pay your maintenance loan during this time. However, if you have any financial concerns please do not hesitate to contact our Student Wellbeing Advisers via studentwellbeing@canterbury.ac.uk for general support and advice on our student hardship funds.

 

Other

The government confirmed that Universities can still charge full tuition fees if their courses are taught partly or fully online for 2020/21. To support this the Student Loans Company continue to enable new and existing students to apply for tuition fee at the full amount.

We want to assure you that our priority is to provide you with the highest quality education and student experience while protecting your health, safety and wellbeing, following guidance from the Government and Public Health England. We aim to provide you with a face-to-face, on-campus experience, alongside engaging digital learning and teaching, and access to facilities including the libraries and online resources.

As we continue to support students to progress and succeed in their studies there is no reduction to the published tuition fees for any year group. We will continue to charge tuition fees in line with published fees and our tuition fee statement.

https://www.canterbury.ac.uk/study-here/applying/terms-and-conditions

We will review our position if the Government changes its advice and guidance relating to tuition fees.

If you have any worries about your finances or wish to discuss changing your study plans, please do not hesitate to contact our Student Wellbeing Advisers. You can email them at studentwellbeing@canterbury.ac.uk.

 

Please also remember that Christ Church Students’ Union are here to support you with advice on academic, financial and housing matters and much, much more.