COVID-19 Student FAQs

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Frequently Asked Questions from current Students

This page covers changes to University life, including remote learning, as well as information for international students.

University Life

Is the University of Buckingham open?

Yes.

For our new students, all teaching (lectures and tutorials) for September/October 2021 will take place on our beautiful campus. We expect all new starters to be ready to attend face to face classes on campus by the 27 September 2021; however, online teaching will be provided for those students who cannot attend immediately due to government restrictions (whether in the UK or their home country).

For our returning students, face to face lectures and tutorials will be provided (subject to sufficient student numbers); however online teaching will remain available for those students who are unable to return to campus for any COVID-19 related reason. Exams (excluding those in Medicine) will remain online for the coming term but we encourage students to return to campus as soon as possible.

NB: MBChB students are being taught in face to face classes.

Should I return to campus?

Yes, if you are able to. Many students have returned but we know that not all countries are allowing international travel and that for some students, entry to the UK is not a simple process. Please follow government guidance regarding travel to the UK.

Before returning to campus, students in the UK must complete a Lateral Flow Test (LFT), you should also complete testing when you arrive on campus in line with the guidance in this document.

International students will have to comply with UK border agency requirements.

Who do I talk to if I have concerns about COVID-19?

The Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity team are available during the week from 9am to 5pm and can be contacted via the email address wellbeingskillsanddiversity@buckingham.ac.uk.

Your Personal Tutor, or department admin team will be happy to discuss any concerns you have about COVID-19 and how it may affect your teaching and learning.

NHS Direct can be called (111) at any time if you have any health concerns or you can visit the NHS Direct website.

All students should register with a GP in the UK in the area that they live – your GP will provide you with a confidential service and you can discuss any matters with them.

Should I regularly complete LFT tests?

Yes, about 1 in 3 people with COVID-19 have no symptoms but can still potentially infect others. Therefore, we expect EVERYONE who comes to campus to test twice a week, even if you are vaccinated as there’s always the chance you can pass COVID-19 onto others.

NB: students on MBChB are asked to test on Wednesday and Sunday.

How do I get tested for coronavirus?

Lateral Flow Device (LFD) testing kits are available to all students and staff who are on campus. You can collect them from the Hunter Street and Fransican Library, the SU Office or the Vinson Building Reception.

You can also order LFD kits to be sent directly to your home from the NHS website. Or collect them from local pharmacies and shops.

What do I do if I’ve never taken a LFT test?

View this YouTube video which take you through the process.

How often should I complete a LFT test?

Testing should be done twice a week. It is essential that you have completed these tests and have negative results to access University buildings.

NB: MB and ChB students are asked to test on Wednesday and Sunday.

What do I do if my LFT test result is positive?

In line with government guidance, if you are not in your own accommodation you will need to return to your accommodation immediately and begin self-isolation. Contact the Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity team, wellbeingskillsanddiversity@buckingham.ac.uk, who will support you during this time.

Anyone that you live with will also have to self-isolate.

If you feel well enough, we expect you to continue with your programme – make sure your Personal Tutor and department admin team know that you are now self-isolating.

Book a PCR test. Complete the PCR as soon as you receive it and wait for confirmation of the results.

It’s important to remember that while you are isolating you MUST NOT leave your accommodation – even if you feel well.

At University level, there is a disciplinary policy in place that will be enforced for those who are found to be acting against government requirements or University protocols. If you see anyone not acting on the guidance and putting themselves and others at risk, please contact the Student Conduct Manager.

The Buckingham online and postal library services are available to Crewe students. Please contact the library team to arrange.

What do I do if my PCR test result is positive?

As you will already be self-isolating, you MUST stay in your accommodation.

It’s important to remember that while you are isolating you MUST NOT leave your accommodation – even if you feel well.

If you feel well enough, we expect you to continue with your programme – make sure your Personal Tutor and department admin team know that you are now self- isolating.

Continue to talk to the Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity team via email, wellbeingskillsanddiversity@buckingham.ac.uk, and MS Teams. Our Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity staff will provide you with ongoing support, and if appropriate food parcels.

At University level, there is a disciplinary policy in place that will be enforced for those who are found to be acting against government requirements or University protocols. If you see anyone not acting on the guidance and putting themselves and others at risk, please contact the Student Conduct Manager.

What do I do if I have COVID-19 symptoms?

If you have COVID-19 symptoms you must order a PCR testing kit to check if you have coronavirus. Completing a LFT is not enough.

You must self-isolate immediately until you receive your PCR test results. If your results are negative, you can stop isolating. If the results are positive, you must self-isolate for 10 full days after the positive result. It is the law in England to self-isolate. If you have been contacted by NHS Test and Trace you MUST self-isolate. Failure to comply with this law could result in a fine being issued. Contact the Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity team who will support you with arranging food parcels, as well as providing you with mental health support.

What do I do if someone I live with tests positive for COVID-19?

If you are not vaccinated, you must self-isolate immediately and complete a PCR test and remain in isolation until you receive your test results. Even if they are negative, you MUST stay in self-isolation for 10 days; obviously  if they are positive, you must also remain in isolation for the full 10 days.

There is no requirement to self-isolate if you have received both your COVID-19 vaccinations. If you are not vaccinated, you can find out more information here.

Do I have to self-isolate even if I have no symptoms and feel well?

You only have to self-isolate if you have NOT been vaccinated. You may be asymptomatic which means you can still spread the virus. You MUST self-isolate until you have completed your required isolation period.

Can I go to the gym or for a walk when isolating?

No, you may be asymptomatic which means you can still spread the virus.  You MUST self-isolate until you have completed a PCR test and it has returned a negative result or your self-isolation period is up.

What do I do about food if isolating?

Please contact our Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity team, wellbeingskillsanddiversity@buckingham.ac.uk, who will arrange for a food parcel to be sent to you.

What happens if I become ill with COVID-19?

You MUST stay in your room and call 111, the NHS Helpline, who will provide you with advice and support. You will have notified the Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity team you have COVID-19, but it is also essential you keep them in the loop.

Do I have to have a vaccine to return to campus?

Having a vaccine is a personal choice. If you are unsure about the benefits of being vaccinated more information can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

COVID-19 vaccination information for University of Buckingham students

 

How do I book a vaccine if I want one?

Registering with a local GP will enable you to book your vaccine much more efficiently than without being registered. Find out how to register with a local GP.

Once registered with a GP your vaccine can be booked via the NHS website.

COVID-19 vaccination information for University of Buckingham students

If I’m not registered with a GP can I get a vaccine?

Yes, you can attend a walk-in coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination site.

For students studying in Crewe, find information about the walk-in vaccination site here.

For students studying in Buckingham, find information about the closest walk-in vaccination site here.

COVID-19 vaccination information for University of Buckingham students

What happens if I have had a first dose of a vaccine before arriving at campus?

If you are an international student Public Health England have provided guidance.

The NHS has produced a set of FAQs for students in Higher Education Institutions in relation to vaccines.

COVID-19 vaccination information for University of Buckingham students

When I return to campus, which buildings can I access?

All study spaces are open on campus and you are required to have taken an LFD test with a negative result, within the last three days to access these spaces. Access to campus buildings for international students is only permitted once any required quarantine has been completed.

Our library buildings on the Buckingham campus are open Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm; Saturday and Sunday, 12pm – 5pm.

The library at the Crewe campus, in the Seeley building is open Monday – Friday, 9am – 4.30pm.

In Crewe, the Wellness Centre is offering one-to-one outdoor training sessions. You can book these by contacting Amanda Weston or Georgia Bevan.  Booth Hall residents are welcome to use the open study space on the ground floor if they need to.

Can I access library resources if I’m not on campus?

Resources are available online and book return fees will be waived. The library offers a postal service if you require books or there is a click and collect (C&C) service. To arrange a postal or C&C service, or for any other questions, you may have, please contact the library team.

The Buckingham online and postal library services are available to Crewe students. Please contact the library team to arrange.

Are the catering outlets on campus open?

The OTM is open, offering food and drink to eat in or take away.

The International café in Crewe is open.

Will my classes be online?

For our new students, all teaching (lectures and tutorials) for September/October 2021 will take place on our beautiful campus. We expect all new starters to be ready to attend face to face classes on campus by the 27 September 2021; however, online teaching will be provided for those students who cannot attend immediately due to government restrictions (whether in the UK or their home country).

For our returning students, face to face lectures and tutorials will be provided (subject to sufficient student numbers); however online teaching will remain available for those students who are unable to return to campus for any COVID-19 related reason. Exams (excluding those in Medicine) will remain online for the coming term but we encourage students to return to campus as soon as possible.

Are the Students' Union, Gym and sports clubs/societies running?

The Students’ Union (SU), as well as the member societies and sports clubs, are running virtual and in person events over the summer. Check the SU website to see what’s on.

Proof of a negative LFT test, taken that day, is currently required for entry to party events at the OTM. Those arriving without evidence will be allowed to take a test at the door but will not be allowed entry UNTIL a negative result is confirmed and logged with the NHS.

In Buckingham, the OTM gym is open for use by staff and students, however you will need to book a time slot for your workouts. More information is available from our Health and Fitness Co-ordinator, Stefan. Contact him via stefan.ridley@buckingham.ac.uk.

The SU bar is open Monday to Friday, with seating available on the decking. If you’d like to keep up to date with the bar you find out more information on the SU website or follow the SU on Instagram or Facebook.

In Crewe, a 1:1 outdoor training session with The Wellness Centre team can be booked by contacting  amandaweston@abhsc.co.uk  or  georgiabevan@abhsc.co.uk.

Can I spend time with other people whilst I'm at university?

Yes, you can. Please refer to the government guidance for recommendations relating to this. However if you have ANY COVID-19 symptoms, or have been asked to isolate for another reason you must not participate in activities involving contact with other people. We would also recommend completing a LFT test before attending an event – especially if it was several days since your last test.

Can I travel?

Before attempting to travel you should visit the government website for full government guidance.

What happens about my visa?

Visas are individual to the person that they belong to. Comprehensive information regarding visas and the concession relating to them can be found here.

The University will take no responsibility for students who fail to adequately plan and prepare for their arrival to the UK.

University Accommodation

Is university accommodation being cleaned?

Cleaning teams are attending to University accommodation areas. However, as hygiene is more important than ever before, we expect students to be considerate and clean up after themselves. Staff will be wearing protective equipment but staff and students should also practise social distancing at all times.

What extra hygiene measures should I be taking on campus?

You should follow the UK government’s guidance at all times.

Students living in university accommodation are reminded that they should use the hygiene facilities within their own accommodation, even if this means they must wait their turn to use these facilities. Students should not, for example, try to use the shower in someone else’s accommodation on the basis that they don’t want to wait for their own shared shower to become free. Instead, they should wait their turn to use the shower within their own accommodation.

Safety on campus

What cleaning measures will be in place?

Our cleaning teams will be regularly cleaning student accommodation areas and University buildings throughout the week, deep cleaning spaces to ensure a hygienic environment.

We will be providing sanitising stations with hand gel and antibacterial wipes. All necessary precautions are being taken to help reduce any contact risks. We have installed screens at all face-to-face service points and are closely monitoring the cleanliness of social study spaces.

What extra hygiene measures should I be taking on-campus?

Students will be expected to sanitise their own study areas and equipment. We will be providing sanitisation equipment, so please wipe down your seats and desk areas before and after use.

You should follow the UK government guidance at all times. This includes washing your hands regularly for 20 seconds.

Do I need to wear a face covering?

All NHS staff must continue to wear face coverings and practise social distancing across all healthcare settings and services. The Medical School are enforcing this policy within their teaching, as well as encouraging students to continue to social distance when not in class.

It is no longer a legal requirement to wear a face covering however, government guidance is that it expects and recommends people wear face coverings in crowded areas such as public transport. Some of you may feel more comfortable wearing masks in teaching buildings and social spaces – whilst it is no longer mandatory to wear face coverings, it is important that we respect each other’s feelings and choices.

What should I do if I see others not following the coronavirus rules and guidance?

Whatever the circumstances, we expect everyone in our University to show respect to one another at all times.

If you know the faculty or department to which the person belongs, you should send an e-mail to the Department Administrator. The matter will then be taken forward by the person’s Personal Tutor, department head, etc.).

Alternatively, please contact the Student Conduct Manager directly to raise your concerns.

COVID-19 Conduct Policy

It’s important that everyone plays their part in fighting against the spread of COVID-19. Please follow the government guidance at all times.

The University’s COVID-19 Conduct policy will be enforced for those who are found to be acting against the government guidance or University protocols. If you see anyone putting themselves and others at risk by not acting on the guidance, please contact the Student Conduct Manager.

Offences include but are not limited to:

  • Acting against government or University guidance
  • Failing to self-isolate when required

University sanctions include:

  • Verbal warnings
  • Formal warnings
  • Monetary fines
  • Eviction from University accommodation
  • Suspension from campus
  • Expulsion

Disciplinary measures will depend on the particular circumstances of each case.

In the event of more complex cases, an investigation will be carried out and the matter may be referred to the police or other public authority.