This University Guide provides useful information and guidance on your academic life at Canterbury Christ Church University. It also gives you an explanation of the University’s codes, regulations, policies and procedures.

Who is this guide intended for?

Why is this guide important to you?

This Guide will help you manage your learning and reach your full potential in your academic life at the University.

You may be a new or returning student at Christ Church, or one of our many students studying at a partner institution. There are things you need to know, and things you’ll need to do to get the most out of your time with us.

Some information you’ll need now; a lot will become more important later. Some of it you’ll never need, such as what to do if you’ve got a problem. But it’s essential you know where to find this information and ask for help.

The Guide doesn’t contain all the details, but it tells you the basics, and where to find out more if you need it.

Don’t forget to also check out your Course Handbook and Module Handbooks.

Further help and assistance during your studies

There are many different ways to ask for help or clarification on anything within this guide.

Your Personal Academic Tutor is your main point of contact for anything related to your course.

If you need general information about the services and support that’s available to you as a Christ Church Student:

Support

Whether you’re looking for help with your studies or to talk to someone about your health and wellbeing, our network of trained professionals can help you throughout your time as a student.

Visit www.canterbury.ac.uk/support for details.

Keeping Informed

students-studying-canterbury-campus-1

Here are the main ways that you can stay informed during your time studying at Canterbury Christ Church University.

STUDENT WEBPAGES

Your student website provides you with key information about all the services available to you while at the University. There are also links to the latest news and events. There are quick links to your emails, calendar and Blackboard. When you log in, you can access personalised information and your 'must-do' tasks.

EMAIL

Once you’ve registered, you’ll be given a University email account (username@ canterbury.ac.uk). All University-related email correspondence will be sent to this address. Therefore, you need to check it regularly. You can redirect your University email to another email account.

BLACKBOARD

Blackboard is where you’ll find most of your learning materials specific to your course. You can find a quick link to Blackboard through your student website. Your tutors will post module and assessment information, lecture recordings, revision, and other learning activities on Blackboard. Blackboard is also where you will submit the majority of your assessments electronically using TurnItIn.

THE i-ZONE

The i-zone is your student helpdesk and one-stop-shop for information about all aspects of life at Christ Church. If i-zone does not know the answer, the team will know who to signpost you to. Whatever your query is, i-zone is always a good place to start.

You can get in touch via email at i-zone@canterbury.ac.uk, by telephone on 01227 922222, Live Chat or by visiting the i-zone desks at the Canterbury or Medway campuses.

SOCIAL MEDIA

For the latest student news and events, check out the Student Blog

We also post regular updates to our dedicated student social media accounts:

Don’t forget to check out your Course Handbook and Module Handbooks, which give you more specific information about your course.

STUDENT PROTECTION PLAN

We have a Student Protection Plan that explains how we manage risks relating to the education we deliver. We set out the actions we would take if there were a risk to you continuing your studies. We describe how we would communicate with and support you if these events should happen. This Plan covers all applicants to current students at the University at all levels of study.

We consider risks to the continuation of the delivery of education regularly. We keep a strategic risk register to record the risks we identify. At least four times a year, we review the content of the risk register. It allows us to update the level of each risk and discuss new ways of overcoming the risk.

Our partner institutions may have their Student Protection Plan. They must have a plan to register with the Office for Students. If they have a Plan, they will provide a copy on their website.

Keeping Safe

Students in Canterbury

At Christ Church, we believe all students have the right to live and study in a safe and supportive environment. Your safety, both on and off campus, is important to us and we work with a range of partners, including Canterbury City Council, Medway Council, Kent Police and the Students’ Union, to support you. Find out how we look after your safety here.

Top Tip 

Download the free Safezone App.

You can use it to alert the Security team via your mobile phone if you need urgent assistance, first aid or if you have an emergency on campus.

Safeguarding

We regard it as unacceptable for any individual to experience any form of harm or abuse. Safeguarding is how the University protects children and adults at risk from abuse, neglect or exploitation from harm. Safeguarding concerns may arise through University activities. Such activities can take place on and off University premises.

How Students and Apprentices can raise concerns

Students and apprentices can share any safeguarding concerns in several ways:

  1. Talking to a tutor, a Designated Safeguarding Officer or Lead, or a staff member in Student Wellbeing
  2. Emailing safeguarding@canterbury.ac.uk
  3. Using the report and support system – where it is possible to make reports anonymously

Our Safeguarding Statement of Policy outlines the approach we take to Safeguarding. You can read about our approach to Safeguarding here.

Prevent

By law, the University has to demonstrate that we have arrangements to safeguard people in our community from being drawn into terrorism. It is known as Prevent Duty.

Our approach is to respond within the spirit of our mission and values.

We have a commitment to freedom of speech within the law to encourage open and reasoned debate. We respect freedom of thought, conscience and religion. However, freedom of thought, conscience and religion is not absolute. We may need to intervene where necessary to protect the rights of others.

We take account of our equality and diversity policy. We aim to provide a fair environment where everyone receives dignity and respect. We intend to sustain a culture free from discrimination linked to any personal characteristic.

In meeting the duty, we emphasise personal well-being in handling incidents and reports.

You can find further details in the Student Briefing on Prevent

Top Tip

Use our Report and Support Tool

If you’ve witnessed or experienced bullying or harassment, including online, we’re here to support you. All staff, students and visitors to our campus can report something either anonymously or with contact details to receive support.

My Course Information

student-studying-canterbury-campus

You’ll find all the information relating to your course (or courses if you’re doing a joint/combined honours degree), including your academic timetable, on the student website and Blackboard.

WHAT AM I EXPECTED TO LEARN?

Each course consists of separate parts known as modules. Each module focuses on specific topics and themes.

Your modules enable you to gain specific knowledge and skills known as ‘learning outcomes’. Throughout your modules, you will undertake regular assessment activities to test your achievement of these learning outcomes.

You must achieve your learning outcomes to progress through your course and gain an award or credits.

You can read about your learning outcomes in your Course Handbook and Module Handbooks on Blackboard.

WHERE CAN I FIND SUPPORT FOR MY STUDIES?

You will be allocated a Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) when you arrive. The PAT will provide you with academic support to identify the academic skills you need to develop and succeed in your studies.

The Learning Skills Team will support you to become a successful and independent learner in your chosen subject. They provide a range of online resources, including the Learning Skills Hub, workshops and support for referencing, essay writing, dissertation writing, critical analysis and reflective writing. Each Faculty has a dedicated member of the Learning Skills Team to provide course advice that will help you develop your academic skills.

We have Peer Mentors from various backgrounds who are keen to share their knowledge and experiences as current students. 

WHAT IF I WANT TO MAKE CHANGES TO MY STUDIES?

We appreciate that, due to several reasons, you may need to change something to do with your studies.

It could be if you want to:

  • move from part-time or full-time  (if your course allows this)
  • change your module(s) (if your course allows this)
  • transfer to a different course (if your qualifications allow)
  • take time out from your studies and return at a future date (which we call ‘interrupt’)
  • leave your studies and not return to the University (which we call ‘withdraw’)

The first thing to do is discuss your options with your Personal Academic Tutor as soon as possible, as it is not always possible to agree to every change request. 

It would be best to find out as soon as possible about the financial and professional implications of any decision that you may make and understand any limitations. We recommend you speak to our Student Wellbeing Advisers for advice. You can also contact the Fees team for information about your tuition fee liability on fees@canterbury.ac.uk

If you want to change your studies, you need to complete a Changes to Study form. You can access this via MyRecord. You can read the details on this process here

My Timetable

Each course will have a range of timetabled sessions both on-campus and online. In addition, you have to develop your own knowledge and manage your own time as you become an independent active learner.

WHAT ARE THE MAIN UNIVERSITY DATES?

You’re able to view your academic calendar for this year and next year here. If you’re unsure what calendar you’re on, please contact your Course Team.

HOW CAN I ACCESS MY TIMETABLE?

All students can view the complete academic timetable for everything taught at Canterbury and Medway campuses via UniTiimetables (the University’s online timetabling and rooming system). By the start of the academic year, most students can keep track of their personal timetable online via MyCalendar.

RECORDING YOUR ATTENDANCE

Attendance is monitored as part of the Student Engagement in Learning Policy.

You will have to use your Smartcard to ‘tap-in’ to on-campus sessions to register your attendance, so don’t forget to bring it with you to every on-campus teaching activity in your personal calendar.

The Course Team, and your Personal Academic Tutor, in particular, monitor your engagement with your studies including your attendance by using a Student Engagement Dashboard. The Dashboard will be used, by your personal academic tutor or course support team in conversation with you, to give an indication of how your learning is progressing and where you may need further support.

WHAT DO I DO IF I CANNOT ATTEND UNIVERSITY?

We know that you’ve made a significant investment in time and money by choosing to come to University. If you are struggling to attend any of your sessions, make sure you let your Course Team know so that they can support you.

You must let your tutors know if you cannot attend so they can help you catch up on what you have missed.

My Assessments

Students taking exams

Your learning is assessed in several ways. It is so you, and the University, can be sure that you are gaining the required skills, knowledge and marks to enable you to progress and achieve an award.

Whatever form the assessment takes, the key thing is that it must allow you to demonstrate the module’s learning outcomes. You must make sure that you know the learning outcomes and are clear about what is expected of you for each assessment as outlined in your Module Handbook.

At each Level of Study, you must normally achieve a pass in each module to achieve 120 credits and gain an overall pass of a level. The pass mark is 40% or greater for Undergraduate courses and 50% or greater for Postgraduate Taught courses.

ASSESSMENT REGULATIONS

All courses and awards are governed by University regulations and processes designed to ensure that they are structured, delivered, and assessed in a fair, consistent and transparent way.

Our Assessment Regulations include details regarding the basic principles around standards, what your marks mean, and the process of second sample marking and double marking.

Understanding these regulations and processes will help you achieve academic success. For further details, see Your Guide to Assessments and Award Processes.

HOW WILL I BE GIVEN FEEDBACK ON MY ASSESSMENTS?

Your tutors and peers provide feedback. You can also self-assess your own work against the marking criteria.

Feedback is valuable as it can help you develop as a learner and point you towards areas of strength and areas for improvement. Feedback is provided on formative tasks (which do not contribute to an overall mark) or summative assessments (which carry a mark towards completing the module).

The aim is to provide you with timely and useful feedback on your summative assessments so that you can develop your knowledge and skills. With this in mind, there is a target of 15 working days after the submission date for tutors to provide you with feedback. For certain assessment activities, such as dissertations, extended projects, independent studies and work submitted after the deadline, there is an extended period before you receive feedback.

SUPPORT FOR YOUR ASSESSMENTS AND REASSESSMENTS

It is important to check your feedback and results so you can continue to improve and progress.

You should discuss the feedback with your Personal Academic Tutor and module tutors. They can guide you to succeed in your studies, improve your marks and support you with any reassessments.

If you are struggling in a particular area or you want to get a higher mark, there is plenty of support:

  • Learning material and activities on Blackboard and other platforms for each module.
  • Peer Mentors - know what it is like first-hand to study at your level and are an invaluable source of knowledge and experience into which you can tap. Attending study sessions with a mentor will help you consolidate your understanding of the course and feel better prepared when undergoing assessments. While discussing your work with other students can help broaden your thinking and discover new ways of studying.
  • Learning Skills Team - This team works with you to develop your study skills such as academic reading, writing and presentations, and managing your time and workload at University. They offer workshops, individual tutorials and online resources such as the Learning Skills Hub to help you develop and enhance your learning.

For further information click here

2.5. Submitting Assessment

It’s important to complete your assessments, including examinations, on time but if you have any worries there is plenty of support.

HOW DO I SUBMIT ASSESSMENTS?

In many of your modules, you will be asked to routinely submit your assessments (with occasional exceptions) through Turnitin. It is an online service that can be accessed through your Blackboard.

Turnitin helps you and your tutors guard against plagiarism and other forms of academic misconduct. On occasions that you might be asked to submit your work through other means, your tutor will explain the process.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM UNABLE TO SUBMIT MY ASSESSMENT ON TIME?

It’s important that you complete your assessments, including exams, on time and there is a wide range of support available to help you to do so. If you do not submit your assessments on time, there could be penalties. 

However, if you experience unexpected short-term personal difficulties, you may be able to request a coursework extension or a further chance to take an exam or time-constrained assessment. In such situations, students on all taught courses (including those studying at a partner institution) are able to use the exceptional circumstances process. Find out more about the different types of requests and the process here

If you have problems likely to affect you for a longer period (several weeks or more) and are not related to a disability, talk to your Personal Academic Tutor or Course Team as soon as possible. They may be able to support you with a Temporary Learning Agreement. The Temporary Learning Agreement aims to help you meet the deadlines at a pace agreed between you and your Course.

If you have a disability, contact the Student Disability or Mental Wellbeing Team. They can work with you to develop a longer-term Learning Support Plan.

WHAT ABOUT TAKING EXAMS?

Your formal assessment and reassessment periods are available here.

Information about your specific examinations will be made available to you via your Blackboard. General information on examination procedures, special arrangements and extenuating circumstances can be found here.

WHAT IF I WAS UNWELL DURING MY EXAM?

If you have taken an examination and you don’t feel you performed to your best because of a short-term problem, you may be able to submit an Impaired Performance Exceptional Circumstance request. It would usually be if you were unwell in the examination, but it could be because of a personal problem. You may ask for another chance to take the examination at the next formal (re)assessment period.

You would need to make this request within 7 days of your examination via the official form and supporting professional evidence.

Complaints and Appeals

student-studying-verena-holmes

We recognise that sometimes things might happen outside our control that could affect your studies or you may wish to raise concerns.

WHAT IF I’M NOT HAPPY WITH AN ASPECT OF MY COURSE?

If you feel you have a problem, we recommend that you first speak to your Personal Academic Tutor and Student Representative. In most cases, a problem can be sorted out very quickly. Only if you don’t feel it has been resolved, should you then use the formal complaints and appeals processes.

The Student Complaints Procedure provides students with an opportunity to raise, individually or collectively, matters of concern without worrying about any repercussions and knowing that privacy and confidentiality will be respected.

An Appeal is defined as a request for a review of an academic body’s decision-making process. They are charged with making academic decisions on progression, assessment, extenuating circumstances, academic conduct or awards. Please note you cannot appeal against an academic judgment, for example, if you are unhappy with a mark you receive.

All students are entitled to representation and support from their Students’ Union to make sure that they are heard and have the opportunity to present their case. For further information, go to www.ccsu.co.uk

HOW CAN I GIVE FEEDBACK?

Your feedback is invaluable. We are always keen to hear your views on your student experience and course. Student-staff liaison meetings normally occur at least twice a year and are your chance to have your say. One or more Student Representatives will be elected to attend these meetings to raise fellow students’ views and report back to their peer group on the outcomes. Reps will also participate in Boards of Study, which oversee course development and improvement. Module evaluations occur at the end of each module when you have an opportunity to give confidential feedback on your course. There are also National Student Surveys that take place once a year, which give you a chance to have your say on what you like about your course, and what you feel could be improved.

Regulations, Policies and Procedures

students-lecture-canterbury-2

The University has a range of policies and procedures in place to help ensure all students are treated fairly and you are clear about what is expected of you.

One of the key documents you need to familiarise yourself with is the Terms and Conditions of Registration. It introduces several essential documents that together define the basis of the contractual agreement between you as the student, and us, as the University.

Some of the key policies are listed below and cover plagiarism, student discipline and social media. These and many other University policies are available to view online at the Student Policy Zone.

HOW THE UNIVERSITY IS REGULATED

The Office for Students (OfS) regulates Canterbury Christ Church University. The OfS is the independent regulator of higher education in England. It aims to ensure that every student, whatever their background, has a fulfilling experience of higher education that enriches their lives and careers. Its work covers all students, whether undergraduate or postgraduate, national or international, young or mature, full-time or part-time, studying on-campus or distance learning. Further details are available about its work are available on the OfS website.

You must act with academic integrity during your studies. You must submit work that is your own. If you do not act with academic integrity, you may be subject to a charge of academic misconduct.

The most common form of academic misconduct is plagiarism. Plagiarism is the act of presenting material, ideas and arguments of another person/persons as one’s own and can include copying, collusion and duplication.

Other misconduct can be direct cheating, including the purchase or commissioning of assessments prepared by others.

The University is committed to fair assessment procedures for all students. Our Academic Misconduct Procedures help you understand what academic integrity is, how to avoid academic misconduct in your work and what we will do if your tutors believe that you have committed misconduct.

The University Bribery Policy identifies that it is not appropriate for students to give staff gifts and/or hospitality, particularly at the recruitment stage or before a period of assessment.

To support you in your studies, we have to collect and process personal information about you. The University carries out these activities under the Data Protection Act 2018 and the UK General Data Protection Regulation. The Information Commissioner oversees this legislation. You can find out what types of personal data we collect, how we use it and how we store and handle that data to ensure it is safe in our Student Privacy Notice.

The University recognises the need to protect and support students whose health, well-being, or behaviour negatively affects other students, staff or their own ability to progress with their studies.

The Fitness to Study Procedure sets out the process to identify a student’s needs, the support available, and the implications for other students and staff members.

If you’re studying a professional course, you’ll need to meet professional standards.

The University has to take action if there are concerns about your fitness to practise or professional suitability. These concerns may include conduct or behaviour that impinges on your professionalism.

If you’re studying for a part of your course while on placement, or within Work-Based Learning, you will need to make sure you are fully prepared. You will also need to meet any requirements from the employer/placement provider.

You’ll be given guidance to help you understand:

  • The purpose of the placement;
  • What is expected of you while on the placement;
  • The processes by which the University approves and manages the placement;
  • The role of the employer/placement provider.

The University recognises you may want to use social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok or LinkedIn for personal use and in your studies.

We have developed guidelines on how to protect your personal and professional reputations while using social media.

Expected behaviours for students

Expect Respect

What is expected of me?

We are sure that you will respect and observe the rules and regulations of the University.

The Student Disciplinary Procedures help explain what we expect of you beyond academic expectations.

You can find this and other key policies online at the Student Policy Zone: www.canterbury.ac.uk/policyzone

Expected behaviours  - designed by students for students

Canterbury Christ Church University and the Students’ Union believe all students, staff and visitors have the right to live, study and work in a safe and supportive environment, free from discrimination, bullying or harassment of any form. We are proud to be part of a community that believes in the common good and supports everyone to thrive.

Any behaviour which threatens the safety, respect or wellbeing of students, staff or visitors will not be tolerated and students will be held accountable under our Student Disciplinary Procedures[1]. We commit to upholding these Expected Behaviours and we will take positive action when we see or hear others acting inappropriately by challenging or reporting behaviour that falls short of our commitment to each other. This commitment is for both on and off campus and in all aspects of the virtual environment.

We are committed to the following principles:

Respect

  • Show mutual respect for each other and all of our protected characteristics.
  • Always listen and seek understanding. Appreciate different viewpoints even when you don’t agree with them.
  • Respect boundaries, be polite, demonstrate good manners, and understand personal space.

Integrity

  • Be honest and authentic.
  • Have the courage to stand up for what is right.
  • Accept your mistakes - we are all human, learning to do better next time is how we grow as individuals.

Acceptance

  • Be accepting of everyone in our community.
  • Foster environments that allow individuals to feel able to express themselves without feeling that they will be judged.
  • Be inclusive - demonstrating that everyone has talents, and everyone is important.

Kindness and Empathy

  • Treat others how you expect to be treated.
  • Make being kind to one another our default.

Being mindful of our differences unites us

Expect Respect

We believe you should never have to put up with harassment of any kind. As such, we will not tolerate unacceptable behaviour against a student, University employee or others visiting, working or studying at the University. To find out what we consider inappropriate see our Unacceptable Behaviour Policy

We work with the Students’ Union on a joint Expect Respect campaign encouraging everyone to play their part in creating an inclusive and welcoming campus for all.

As part of our Expect Respect commitment, we have Report+Support, an online reporting platform for students and staff to disclose any incidents of harassment either anonymously or named.

The CCCU Expect Respect Pledge

  • To give respect to all;
  • To take responsibility for helping to create an inclusive and welcoming University;
  • To take positive action to prevent discrimination by not tolerating, condoning or ignoring harassment of any kind;
  • To educate myself and others about harassment - what it is, how it makes people feel and challenging harassment when possible.
Expect Respect Pledges
Expect Respect Pledges

Financial Obligations

Students

As a student, you are responsible for ensuring the payment of your tuition fees for each year of your course, regardless of how you are funding and paying for your tuition fees.

You can find out more about your Tuition Fees and other key finance policies online here

If you’ve entered into a licence agreement to stay in University accommodation or a Homestay arrangement, you are also responsible for the payment of your accommodation fees under the terms of your agreement. It is therefore essential that you read the terms and conditions of your accommodation licence agreement carefully.

If you decide to take a break from your studies or leave the University early, it is likely that you will still need to pay some, or all, of your tuition and accommodation fees for that academic year.

Only those who are new entrants and who interrupt or withdraw from the University within the first two weeks of the course’s official start date will be exempt from paying any tuition fees. However, students need to follow the official withdrawal process by completing a Changes to Study form

You should also note that if you interrupt your studies and then return later, you will also need to pay tuition fees for the academic year in which you return. Depending on the length of your interruption, the annual tuition fee due on your return to the University may be at a higher level than when you interrupted your studies. The proportion of the annual fee due will depend on your return date and the stage of your course to which you return. For more information, you should contact the Fess team in the Finance department or email fees@canterbury.ac.uk.

If at any time you are worried about finances or struggling to budget you can see our Student Support and Wellbeing Advisers for help and advice.

Your Students' Union

our community students union

Christ Church Students’ Union is student-led and the independent representative body for students at the University. Upon joining the University you automatically become a member of the Christ Church Students’ Union.

The University Governing Body approves the Students’ Union constitution (called the Articles of Association) and the Students’ Union Code of Practice.

The Students' Union

  • Mission - To better student life and enrich students’ experiences.
  • Vision - To empower, encourage and embrace every Christ Church student.
  • Ambition - To play a central role in the lives of students through facilitating activities that are student-led; both to improve students’ experiences as well as to ensure graduates are highly employable and equipped for future success.
  • Values - Student-led & Democratic, Inclusive, Dependable & Professional, Supportive, Partnership, Respect, Fun!

The Students’ Union is led by a student council made up of full-time officers, known as Sabbatical Officers (Sabbs), and part-time officers. It is backed up by a Board of Trustees and over 600 elected Student Representatives whose job it is to represent you through the various committees and working groups that shape your student experience.

You can get free, independent and impartial advice from your Students’ Union to help you with academic issues and University life in general. There’s a lot to do outside of your studies that will help you meet new people and get connected. The Union offers extra-curricular activities, with over 100 clubs and societies to try as well as trips, experiences, volunteering and fundraising to get involved with, helping you to have fun, meet people, develop employability skills and succeed in your time at Christ Church.

Find out how you can benefit, and get involved at www.ccsu.co.uk

The Student and University Partnership Agreement

The Student and University Partnership Agreement is part of our overall vision and developed in equal partnership between Canterbury Christ Church University and Christ Church Students’ Union.

Our shared mission is to pursue excellence in higher education; transforming individuals, creating knowledge, enriching communities and building a sustainable future.

The University has a data-sharing agreement with Christ Church Students’ Union. This sets out how students’ personal information can be used and shared between the University and the Union.