We understand this year has been a challenging one and you may have mixed feelings about starting your university course in January. You’re excited to kick-start the next phase of your life, but there’s still so much uncertainty.
Here at Buckingham we have been working hard on our teaching and learning model, student experience and student support to give you as much reassurance and security as we can in these troubled times. This is our pledge, our 8 promises to you, as we gear up to welcome you to the Buckingham community in January.
We are ranked 1st for Teaching Excellence in the UK* and we are maintaining that standard, online and off.
Our award-winning small group tutorials are a hallmark of our University: these are a big part of your course and ensure you get the personalised learning experience we pride ourselves on. We are hoping to resume running small-group tutorials and are working with our estates and academic teams to ensure we can do so safely. Tutorials will also be delivered online for those students who may not be able to attend in person. Lectures will be delivered online and recorded so you can watch them again in your own time. As one of the few UK universities operating a summer term, our July and traditional September cohort of new students have helped us to perfect this model well before you arrive.
Our personal tutors will continue to be available to you and offer an ‘open-door policy’ so that you can access any extra help or support you may need, when you need it – whether that’s through Microsoft Teams or face-to-face.
2. Study your way: guaranteed
At the present time, we are supporting any students who can't join us on campus due to Covid-19 related reasons with high-quality online learning. Our preference though is to be able to teach you face to face and we have made adjustments across our campus to help protect our students and staff. We are monitoring government guidance and will update you as the situation changes; we expect everyone to attend their courses in-person as soon as it's safe and possible to do so.
Rest assured that your study future is secure at Buckingham.
3. Personal safety measures
Campus facilities are now re-opening and we are providing sanitisation 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. Our cleaning teams are regularly attending to student accommodation and University buildings throughout the week and deep cleaning spaces to ensure a hygienic environment.
There is free car parking across campus, including in four dedicated University car parks, so you don’t need to take public transport. Many of our students choose to live locally and find it easy to walk or cycle to campus. All our University accommodation is either on campus, or within walking distance.
We are responsive to any changing public health guidelines and are reviewing our health and safety processes daily.
4. Wellbeing & support
We take wellbeing seriously. We’re the UK’s only Positive University, which means we have a range of Positive Psychology initiatives in action across the University to the benefit of both staff and students. We encourage everyone to think mindfully, have positive interactions with one another, build mental fitness skills and form meaningful bonds.
If you experience any challenges with university life, with your physical or mental health or your wellbeing, our Students First team are here to provide you with the personalised support that you need. The team are available online and in person and, unlike other universities, we don’t have long waiting lists so you’ll be able to speak to someone when you need to.
If you need extra academic support, particularly if you’re feeling a bit rusty after months out of the classroom, our Academic Skills Know-how (ASK) team can help you. Working with students across all disciplines and levels of study, they can offer you academic skills strategies to support and improve your results at the University.
5. Safe, multicultural campus
We are proud to welcome students from over 100 different countries. Buckingham’s diversity helps to create better understanding of other people and cultures, enriching the overall educational experience for everyone. You’ll become part of a close-knit community, able to forge life-long friendships with people from around the world.
We also have one of the top three safest campuses in the UK (The Complete University Guide, 2020). You won’t get lost on a sprawling campus or feel unsafe in a large city at Buckingham.
6. Vibrant social life
There’s no need to worry about missing out on the student experience. Our Students’ Union (SU) offers a wide range of clubs and societies for you to join. Being part of these communities is a great way for you to meet other students and get more involved with University life.
Our clubs and societies will be holding in-person events, (always adhering to Government guidelines) as well as online activities. Recent virtual events have included Netflix parties, TikTok competitions, live online concerts, language lessons, quizzes and fitness challenges. Take a look at what’s been happening through the SU Instagram (uniofbuckinghamsu) and Facebook pages.
7. Green spaces & fresh air
Bordering on the Cotswolds, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to day trips, walking trails, riverside picnic spots, and mountain biking, camping and hiking adventures. Buckingham is surrounded by green spaces and the University itself is wrapped around the Great River Ouse: students often relax by the riverbank to study or catch up.
If all that fresh air gets too much, you can hop on a bus or train to access Oxford, London or Milton Keynes (and from Milton Keynes Central station you can access just about any city in England).
8. Personal assistance
You will be known by your name, not a number, at Buckingham. You will be supported by your lecturers and personal tutors throughout your time with us, as well as our Students First team. If you need to self-isolate upon arrival or due to illness, we will arrange food and/or medication deliveries and support you in any way that we can.
We hope these promises help you to better picture what studying at the University of Buckingham will be like for you in January. You have permission to feel excited!
If you still have some questions, we’re here around the clock via the live chat on our website or you can drop us a line via our easy-to-use enquiry form.. We’re regularly calling our January applicants and would love to hear from you. Whatever question you may have, we’re here to help.
COVID-19: APPLICANT FAQs
*Times Higher Education metrics ranking, 2017