Information for prospective degree students

If you have an offer to study with us – congratulations!

For those students who haven’t yet applied and wish to do so, applications for 2020/21 remain open and we encourage you to apply as planned.

Your application is very important to us.

We appreciate that the current situation with Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the implications for starting university may be a concern for you. This is a very unsettling time for all prospective students but please be assured that if you have an offer to study with us, it still stands. Whilst the situation on Coronavirus is continually evolving, we can however guarantee that all prospective students will be able to start their degree programme at Richmond at the end of September 2020.

Based on advice from the UK Government, ensuring the welfare of our students and staff is our absolute priority. That’s why we have taken the decision to commence the semester with a blended combination of online and on-campus teaching for all new students in the Fall.

Our virtual orientations will start on Monday 21 September, with the online course beginning a week later on Monday 28 September with supported learning for all new students.

Dependent on the outcome of lockdown and social distancing measures, we plan to commence on-campus teaching at Richmond on Monday 2 November, with students being able to move into their campus accommodation from Monday 26 October and on-campus orientation taking place from 26-30 October. There may also be an option for you to defer the start of your programme at Richmond until the Spring semester in January 2021. Both of these options will be confirmed once UK Government guidance has been clarified. We are closely monitoring the situation and planning for all eventualities.

If you wish to seek funding for September 2020, we would encourage you to continue with your application to the relevant funding bodies as normal. For further details, please see our Fees and funding website page. We also have a range of great scholarships on offer to make your university education more affordable, see our website for details.

We will contact all prospective students if anything changes, as soon as we have more information.

If you would like more information or have any questions, our Admissions and Recruitment team would be happy to help. Please email our team on enquiries@richmond.ac.uk. If you are in the US, please email usadmissions@richmond.ac.uk.

Stay safe and well.

Q&As

1. What is happening at Richmond for the next academic year?

If you have an offer to study with us – congratulations!  For those students who haven’t yet applied and wish to do so, applications for 2020/21 remain open and we encourage you to apply as planned.  Your application is very important to us.

We appreciate that the current situation with Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the implications for starting university may be a concern for you. This is a very unsettling time for all prospective students but please be assured that if you have an offer to study with us, it still stands. Whilst the situation on Coronavirus is continually evolving, we can, however, guarantee that all prospective students will be able to start their degree programme at Richmond in September 2020.

Based on advice from the UK Government, ensuring the welfare of our students and staff is our absolute priority. That’s why we have taken the decision to commence the semester with a blended combination of online and on-campus teaching for all new students at Richmond in the Fall.

2. When will new students start their programmes?

Our virtual orientations for undergraduates and postgraduates will start on Monday 21 September, with the online course beginning a week later on Monday 28 September with supported learning for all new students.

Dependent on the outcome of lockdown and social distancing measures, we plan to commence on-campus teaching at Richmond and Kensington on Monday 2 November, with students being able to move into their campus accommodation from 26 October and on-campus orientation taking place from 26-30 October. There may also be an option for you to defer the start of your programme at Richmond until the Spring semester in January 2021. Both of these options will be confirmed once UK Government guidance has been clarified. We are closely monitoring the situation and planning for all eventualities.

3. Are these dates the same for undergraduates and postgraduates?

Yes, these timings apply to all new undergraduates and postgraduates starting their programmes at Richmond in Fall 2020.  Once on-campus teaching is confirmed, undergraduates will be based at our campus in Richmond and postgraduates at the Kensington campus.

4. How many courses will I be studying in Fall 2020?

We will be teaching one course online for three weeks (from Monday 28 September to Friday 16 October) for both undergraduates and postgraduates.  This will mean that students’ programmes will be able to get underway before on-campus teaching commences in November, providing that lockdown restrictions are removed.  The remainder of the courses will be taught once on-campus teaching is available.

5. I’m an undergraduate, will I still be able to complete my first year in two semesters?

All new undergraduate students will take three courses in Fall 2020, five in Spring 2021 as normal and the later start than normal for the 2020/21 academic year means that they will need to take two courses during the summer semester at Richmond in addition.

6. I’m a postgraduate, will I still be able to complete my course in one year?

All full-time postgraduates will complete their course in one year. The first semester is condensed teaching with more contact hours across nine weeks rather than 14.

7. Are you offering any other support for students in addition to online learning?

Our award-winning Student Affairs team will have a special online programme of activities to welcome new students to the University and support them.  More details will be released in due course.

In addition, each student will be assigned their own Personal Academic Advisor.

Any Special Educational Needs you may have will be assessed by Student Affairs and Registry Services to ensure that we have the appropriate measures in place to support you with your online learning and assessments.

8. What is the University doing in response to the Coronavirus pandemic?

The health, welfare and safety of students, staff and faculty is the number one priority for the University.  In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we are closely following UK Government guidance with any information updates for students regularly posted on our website and emailed to students.

9. What is happening regarding funding for students for Fall 2020?

If you wish to seek funding for September 2020, we would encourage you to continue with your application to the relevant funding bodies as normal. For further details, please see our Fees and funding website page. We also have a range of great scholarships on offer to make your university education more affordable, see our website for details.

We will contact all prospective students if anything changes, as soon as we have more information.

10. Can I book housing now?

Yes, you can book your housing requirements now, based on arriving at the campus by Monday 26th October for the start of orientation.

11. I’m an international student, do I need to get a Tier 4 visa?

We will be regularly monitoring the latest Home Office information and guidance.  The latest indications from the Home Office are that international students can start a degree programme online but will need to apply for a visa if they are able to move into on-campus learning.

You can find general information about visas on this link:

www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration/student-visas

More specific information or Coronavirus and Tier 4 visas is available here:

www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-tier-4-sponsors-migrants-and-short-term-students

12. I can’t take an English language test at the moment because of the COVID-19 pandemic, is there any alternative?

We recognise that because of the difficult circumstances created by COVID-19 that English language testing cannot take place in a test centre as normal.  In line with other UK universities, we have extended the range of tests that we will accept as evidence of English language proficiency. Please visit our Admissions Page for further details.

13. What is the UK Government Home Office guidance on visas/immigration and English Testing Centres?

On Tuesday 26 May 2020, the Home Office published updated guidance on GOV.UK on immigration provisions for individuals affected by restrictions associated with coronavirus (COVID-19).  Full details are available at: Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for UK visa applicants and temporary UK residents

Tier 2, 4 and 5 sponsors should continue to visit the following GOV.UK page: Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for Tier 2, 4 and 5 sponsors

The latest changes are:

Application and Service Centres in the UK

  • Some UK Visa and Citizenship Application Centres (UKVCAS) will reopen for existing customers on 1 June 2020. Individuals can check which UKVCAS centres are open.
  • Service and Support Centres (SSCs) are temporarily closed because of COVID-19.

For visa customers outside of the UK

  • Some UK Visa Application Centres (VACs) are resuming services, where local restrictions allow. For updates to the status of VACs, contact:
    • TLS Contact if you’re in Europe, Africa and parts of the Middle East
    • VFS Global for all other countries
  • Please be aware, ongoing global restrictions mean some UKVI services will remain closed. Individuals should contact their local VAC to find out the latest status. Where services are resuming, existing customers will be contacted.
  • Some English Testing Centres are also resuming services. Visit the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)’s website, the Pearson Test of English websiteor the LanguageCert website or an individual can contact their test centre for more information on where we the English Testing Centres are reopening and how they can book their Secure English Language Test.

UKVI has a dedicated team for customers with immigration queries related to COVID-19. This includes questions about urgent, compelling and compassionate cases. Customers should visit Gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-advice-for-uk-visa-applicants-and-temporary-uk-residents for further help and support.

14. Who do I contact for more information?

If you would like more information or have any questions, our Admissions and Recruitment team would be happy to help. Please email our team on enquiries@richmond.ac.uk.   If you are in the US, please email usadmissions@richmond.ac.uk.