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Back to COVID-19 information

We look forward to welcoming you to Aston University. Our aim is to support you in progressing your education and professional experience, whilst prioritising the health and safety of all our students and staff. 

All our new students will start their studies as planned, through a blended learning approach that combines both online and on-campus teaching. Read about the Aston Student Pledge. Watch our short video for a preview of Aston life:

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Welcome to Aston University

A preview of University life


  • If you use Facebook, we also post updates in our exclusive Facebook group for international and postgraduate offer-holders. To join, you will be asked for your name, course and Aston ID, which you can find in the email invite or offer letter.
  • We will also post updates on our WeChat account ('Aston1895') and in our WeChat group for offer-holders. To join this group, add us on WeChat 'Aston_U' and send us a screenshot of your offer letter. 

Information for students arriving on campus:

View our pre-arrival guide for international students

Information last updated on 18 November 2020

Starting your postgraduate course in January 2021 

Watch Pakhi's video about blended learning at Aston University

How is Aston University affected by the latest UK lockdown?

In line with the Government announcement on Saturday 31 October, England will be going into a second lockdown from Thursday 5 November until Wednesday 2 December, but the University will remain open. Please be assured that the health and wellbeing of everyone in our community remains our top priority. We realise that you may have concerns about this so we wanted to explain what the impact of this will be.  

Within our University the number of active cases of COVID-19 has been on a steady decrease and remains low. While this may show that our COVID-19 security measures are working, there is no room for complacency, and these restrictions have been put in place by the Government in response to the rising number of cases across the country. 

How is this affecting teaching sessions?

The Government continues to prioritise education and schools and universities will remain open. Teaching will continue as planned with our blended-learning approach and current research activities. Travel remains permitted for work and education purposes. Many social distancing measures are already in place across campus to keep our community as safe as possible and to ensure that you can continue with your teaching sessions. 

The Library and study spaces remain open for students to use whilst adhering to social distancing measures. Details about these can be found on our Covid19- FAQ webpage.

Can students still socialise with friends?

You can still socialise with the people you live with, either in on-campus or private accommodation, so long as you remain within your household bubble. You must not meet up with people from other households. 

What are Aston University’s teaching plans for January 2021?

All our new students will start their studies as planned, through a blended learning approach that combines both online and on-campus teaching.

What does this mean?

  • Lectures will be delivered online. These are interactive sessions where there will be opportunities for you to ask questions and engage with lecturers and other students. 
  • As part of Aston’s commitment to a blended learning approach, you will also be invited to attend a number of on-campus small group learning sessions and activities as part of your course.
  • Academic staff are keen to support you with your learning, through regular office hours where you can ask specific questions, or via a Personal Tutor allocated to all students 
  • You will also have access to a mix of online and on-campus student support and Library Services. We will provide more details about these in a future email, as we take account of the latest health advice.

Our intention is to gradually introduce more on-campus teaching and support as social distancing rules are relaxed/removed and it is safe to do so. Our top priority is the health, safety and wellbeing of our students and staff and we are working hard to ensure your learning experience is of our usual high quality.

Watch Pakhi's video about blended learning at Aston University

Click here to learn about Piyushi’s recent experience of online learning.

If you are in China, click here to learn about Meng’s recent experience of online learning.

Is there a deadline for accepting my offer?

Yes, there is an offer acceptance deadline. This can be found in your offer letter. It is sometimes possible to extend this deadline, please contact pgadmissions@aston.ac.uk

Do I have to come to the UK?

To make the most of your learning experience, we strongly encourage you to travel to the UK and join us on campus, and so we have invested resources on social distancing and cleanliness.  We understand, however, that you may not currently be able to leave your home country.  For this reason, we will allow you to enrol and study online from January and join us when you are ready during term one. 

There may be some courses which require you to attend our campus in person (for instance, some laboratory based courses), so please check with your School Programme Office. 

ABS School Office
+44 (0)121 204 5454  |  abs_studentsupport@aston.ac.uk 

EPS School Office
+44 (0)121 204 3535  |  eas_reception@aston.ac.uk

SSH School Office
+44 (0)121 204 3760  |  lss_studentsupport@aston.ac.uk

We have welcomed students onto campus in September and we will continue to welcome students for the January 2021 intake. Blended learning is likely to be the preferred option throughout the coronavirus pandemic. The University is putting significant resources into ensuring that this will be a positive experience for you. 

Will I miss out on anything if I stay away from campus?

There will be on-campus teaching, personal tutor support and other activities related to your programme available, and we encourage you to join in with the on-campus sessions to get the best learning experience.  Your programme will also be available online, and you will not be penalised if you choose not to attend any sessions in term one. 

There may be some courses which require you to attend our campus in person (for instance, some laboratory based courses), so please check with your School Programme Office. 

ABS School Office
+44 (0)121 204 5454  |  abs_studentsupport@aston.ac.uk 

EPS School Office
+44 (0)121 204 3535  |  eas_reception@aston.ac.uk

SSH School Office
+44 (0)121 204 3760  |  lss_studentsupport@aston.ac.uk

We have welcomed students onto campus in September and we will continue to welcome students for the January 2021 intake. Blended learning is likely to be the preferred option throughout the coronavirus pandemic. The University is putting significant resources into ensuring that this will be a positive experience for you. 

Watch Pakhi's video about blended learning at Aston University

I do not want to start my course online, what can I do?
We would encourage you to join the course on campus in January.  If you would prefer to wait until the programme is being taught fully on campus, then you may be eligible to defer your course start date until a later time. Please note this option may not be available to all programmes, so please contact Admissions for advice. 
When will teaching start?

For Aston Business School, teaching will start on 11th January. For all Engineering & Social Science courses teaching will start on 25th January.

When will full face-to-face teaching start?
There will be teaching on campus and other programme related activities for small groups. In term one large teaching sessions will be online.  We are unable to confirm when the University will be able to offer full face-to-face teaching, and we will only do this when it is safe to do so and in accordance with advice from Public Health England.
Can I arrive a little late to my course?
We will be as flexible as possible with your arrival dates. There may be a number of reasons why starting in January would be difficult, for example, your visa application may take longer, your visa application centre may be closed, you may be finding it difficult to get a flight, or you may be in a country currently in lockdown. You can start your studies online and we can help you with the visa application and arrival in the UK when you are able to do so, so please keep us up to date. 
Will my tuition fees be reduced if I start my course online?
No, the University is still putting significant resources into providing you with the same high quality teaching, it is just being delivered in a different way. We are also offering you the opportunity to attend sessions on campus, but these are restricted so that we can keep everyone healthy and safe during the pandemic. 
I have an offer to study at Aston in January 2021. What will happen if I am unable to attend in January?

If you are not able to travel to Birmingham, or even to the UK, or need to stay at home for health reasons; we will provide online study options to help you continue with your course until you are able to join us.

You will have access to learning materials and be able to fully engage with tutors and other academic staff on an individual basis. You will also have access to our library, Learning Development Centre (which offers study skills support), as well as student and academic support facilities. As soon as you are able to join us we will work with you to arrange this.

EU applicants should note that following the government announcement, EU students will not be eligible for a Home Fee status from the academic 2021/2022 year (starting from 1st July 2021 onwards). This means they will not be eligible for student finance to cover their tuition fees and will not be paying home fees. Aston University will charge EU students international fees starting from September 2021 onwards. The course fees are listed on the individual course pages. If you think you still may be eligible for UK student fees, please contact us at astoninternational@aston.ac.uk to confirm your fee assessment.

I'm a student from the EU. Will my fees increase in January 2021?

No, your fees will not increase in January 2021. However, there will be additional visa requirements for you to follow. For more information, please refer to our Brexit FAQs

Visas

Can I get a visa for Blended Learning?

Yes, the UKVI have made a special concession during the Covid-19 period, which means we are allowed to sponsor you to study in this way. 

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

Do I need a visa to start my course?

If you are not currently in the UK, then you do not need to have been granted a visa to start your course online. You will be able to join us online until your visa has been granted. If you are currently in the UK, then please contact one of our International Student Advisers for advice. 

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

 When can I get my CAS?

 We aim to have CAS’s issued within 5 working days after your pre-CAS questionnaire is approved, so long as you have an unconditional offer and have paid your deposit or provided their financial guarantee letter.

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

How long is a CAS valid for?

A CAS is valid for 6 months, so we need to have a good idea of when you are going to arrive in the UK before this is issued. 

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

Will I still be eligible for the Graduate Route visa if I start online or arrive late?

Yes, you will be eligible for the new Graduate Route visa as long as you arrive in the UK before 6th April 2021 and you are awarded your degree in the Summer of 2021 onwards. 

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

I am currently in the UK and my visa is about to expire, but I cannot leave due to the pandemic, what can I do?

It may be possible to apply for a brand new visa from inside the UK.  Please contact our International Student Advisers for free professional advice and guidance and they will explain your options astoninternational@aston.ac.uk

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

If I arrive in the UK with a Tier 4 visa but I do not attend classes, will you take my visa away?

Once you are safely in the UK, you will be required to show you are actively engaging with your studies, as this is a requirement of your visa. For term one, we will allow you to demonstrate this engagement using our online activities, but we recommend that you take advantage of the campus- based sessions as well where possible. Some areas, such as MBChB (Medicine) are required to attend in person to achieve all the learning outcomes, so please contact us for discussion, advice, and adaptation of the timetable if possible (a leave of absence will be considered if necessary.)

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please visit our visa webpage or contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

Accommodation 

Will I still be able to stay in Unite residences if I join later than January?

We will always try and accommodate students on campus if there is availability, no matter when they apply. We would signpost you to other providers off campus if we do not have any availability.

Can I use the Kitchen in Unite residence on campus?

Yes, you will have access to the kitchen to make drinks and cook for yourself, but there are additional safety measure in place for students who are self-isolation.

Steps you can take to reduce risk whilst using shared kitchens and bathrooms: 

  • Only use the kitchen when other flatmates aren’t in there 
  • Clean down shared kitchens or bathrooms after use 
  • Wear PPE if possible when in communal areas 
What if I’m living off campus?
Facilities are likely to be similar in off campus accommodation, but you should contact your accommodation provider to confirm their local rules. 
Where can I buy bedding?

Unite residence have a range of bedding and kitchen packs available to purchase and can be ready in your room when you arrive.

https://www.unitestudents.com/Products

If you are living off campus, then you may be able to purchase similar packs from your accommodation provider, or arrange for a package to be delivered from Amazon.    

Arriving at Aston and support during self-isolation 

What if I experience problems with immigration at the airport?

Call our Campus Safety team on (+44)121 359 2922. We’re available 24 hours to support you.

What if I experience coronavirus symptoms on my arrival at the airport?
You must travel directly to the location where you will be staying. Read the UK government guidance on travelling to the UK and how to self-isolate. If you need further support, call our Campus Safety team on (+44)121 359 2922. We’re available 24 hours to support you.
What does self-isolation look like in the UK?

You will be asked to complete an online passenger location form up to 48 hours before you arrive in the UK. The form can be found here:  https://www.gov.uk/provide-journey-contact-details-before-travel-uk

You may not have to self-isolate if you come from one of the ‘Travel Corridors’ listed in the information here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-travel-corridors#updates-to-the-travel-corridor-list

If you are required to self isolate, then you should go straight to the main accommodation where you will be staying, although you are permited to stay overnight in a safe accommodation (such as a hotel) if you have had a long journey. 

Will I have to self-isolate over Christmas and New Year if I am starting my course in January 2021? 

No, it is not necessary to self-isolate over the Christmas and New Year holiday (unless you first arrive in the UK during this period and are required to self-isolate on arrival). Term will start on 4th January 2021. For Aston Business School, teaching will start on 11th January. For all Engineering & Social Science courses teaching will start on 25th January. 

How can I get to the University?

Here are some national companies that you could consider using for transport to Birmingham:

https://www.nationalexpress.com/en/help/tickets (bus)

https://www.trainline.eu/?utm_campaign=arkadiy&utm_medium=affiliate&utm_source=network  (train) 

ttps://www.getasnap.com/ (bus)

Once you arrive at one of Birmingham's central train or bus stations, you will most likely need to book a taxi to your accommodation. (This is a short taxi journey of less than 15 minutes). 

If you use public transport, you must wear a face covering which covers your nose and mouth. We suggest you pack a face covering or scarf in your hand luggage so you are prepared. If you are showing any symptoms of Coronavirus, you will not be allowed to use public transport and you will have to show that your chosen accommodation is prepared for you to self isolate. 

What do I need to take with me on the journey to Aston? 
You will need to wear a face mask while travelling on public transport (e.g. plane, train, bus, taxi) and in any public indoor places such as shops, airports etc. Contactless card payments are now encouraged at most places - you may be unable to pay with cash during your journey, so it's a good idea to bring a credit card, debit card or travel money card.
Where can I self isolate?

You should self-isolate in one place for the full 14 days, where you can have food and other necessities delivered, and stay away from others. You must self-isolate at the address you provided on the public health passenger locator form.

You should not have visitors, including friends and family, unless they are providing:

  • emergency assistance
  • care or assistance, including personal care
  • medical assistance
  • veterinary services
  • certain critical public services

You must not go to any on campus sessions or to visit public areas during your 14 day self isolation period.

You should not go shopping. If you require help buying groceries, other shopping or picking up medication, you should ask for help via the Safezone app.  

Where can I get some food?

Aston University has a food delivery service which can be accessed here https://www2.aston.ac.uk/current-students/nourish#food-delivery.

Nourish will also be providing recipe boxes and food parcels should if you want to cook your own meals.

If you live off campus, you may still be able to use the campus based food options, and we can arrange for one of our Aston Support Volunteers to bring the food to you.

You can also arrange for food to be delivered to you from a number of restaurants in the city using the following apps;

  • Deliveroo
  • Just Eat
  • Hungryhouse
  • UberEATS
  • Food Panda
  • EASI

There are also a number of specialist supermarkets who will deliver groceries to your door if you want to cook for yourself. For example:

Medication and toiletries

If you require medication or need a supply of toiletries, please out in a request for help via the Safezone app, and we will be in touch to discuss your requirements. 

How to pay for online services

You will be able to pay for the catering packs or food parcels online using the Aston Shop. We will provide you with details of this service in the next few weeks. 

Undergraduate and Foundation students 

Undergraduate and Foundation students 

 Applications are open for undergraduate courses starting in September 2021. The first UCAS deadline is on 15th January 2021. Browse our courses and apply.

For the latest updates on teaching in September 2021 view our Future Undergraduate Students page

For those who use WeChat, we will also post updates on our WeChat account ('Aston1895') and in our WeChat group for offer-holders. To join this group, add us on WeChat 'Aston_U' and send us a screenshot of your offer letter. 

 

 

Student life 

Student life 
The Aston Students’ Union (SU) operates a variety of services to support your wellbeing and help you settle into university life, and will offer a mix of both virtual and on campus activities during the academic year.

Earlier this year the SU set up a ‘virtual campus’ where students can connect and participate in a variety of online activities and events. Additionally, our Aston Auntie Scheme will partner you with a current student who can act as a friend to introduce you to life at Aston.  

As soon as it is safe to do so, we will start to introduce on-campus events and activities to give you more opportunities to engage with clubs, societies and meet other students.

Whether via the website, social media, or if you visit their amazing building, the SU is the go to place to enjoy the fun side of university and get the most from your student experience. 

English language requirements

English language requirements

We accept a wide range of English language qualifications including IELTS Academic, TOEFL, PTE Academic, IELTS Indicator, TOEFL iBT Home Edition, and Password. We also accept the Duolingo English Test (for entry onto Pre-Sessional English programmes, and direct entry courses starting in September 2020 and January 2021, excluding Aston Medical School and OSPAP).

We also accept local qualifications such as iGCSE, Indian Standard XII, HKDSE, WAEC, for direct entry (excluding foundation level courses). 

For foundation level entry, you are still required to provide a UKVI IELTS to meet your offer condition. 

If your qualification is not listed here then please contact us at ask@aston.ac.uk to see if we can accept it

Pre-Sessional English options for January 2021 entry
  • The 9-week and 5-week Pre-Sessional English courses will be taught completely online. There will be no on-campus teaching for these courses. 
  • In addition to accepting UKVI IELTS, we will accept a wider range of English language qualifications (including non-UKVI English tests) for the 9 and 5 week courses. (Such as non-UKVI IELTS Academic, TOEFL, PTE Academic, Duolingo English Test).

9-week course (online)

 
Course dates Entry requirements Accepted qualifications

6th July – 4th September 2020

28th September - 27th November 2020

IELTS overall 5.0 or 5.5*

*Depending on your course/level of study. See pre-sessional entry requirements

UKVI IELTS

Other English language qualification (non-UKVI IELTS Academic, TOEFL, PTE Academic, Duolingo English Test)

5-week course (online)

 
Course dates  Entry requirements  Accepted qualifications

3rd August – 4th September 2020

26th October - 27th November 2020

UKVI IELTS overall 5.5 or 6*

*Depending on your course/level of study. See pre-sessional entry requirements

UKVI IELTS

Other English language qualification (non-UKVI IELTS Academic, TOEFL, PTE Academic, Duolingo English Test)

Our online Pre-Sessional English courses are made up of live online sessions, and offline activities. Your course will include one or two online sessions each day, between the hours of 8am – 2pm (UK time). During the offline activities you will interact with your tutors and fellow students using discussion forums and other tools. Your exact timetable will be shared with you a few weeks before the course starts.

Frequently asked questions:

  • Do I need to apply again for the online Pre-Sessional English courses if I already have an unconditional offer for a 9-week or 5-week Pre-Sessional English course? No.
  • What are the deadlines to apply for the 9-week and 5-week Pre-Sessional English courses? Two weeks before the course start date, however places are limited and may be filled up earlier.
  • How do I apply for a Pre-Sessional English course? Information on how to apply is available on the Pre-Sessional English course page.

  • How much is the deposit for the Pre-Sessional English courses? The deposit is £500.

Still have questions?

Our enquiries team are available to help answer any questions you may have, please contact us at ask@aston.ac.uk (please make sure to provide your 9-digit student application ID number). If you use WeChat, you can contact us at 'Aston_U'.

If you have any questions specifically related to your Tier 4 Visa or your CAS, please contact casqueries@aston.ac.uk and our expert visa team will be able to help you.

We look forward to welcoming you to the Aston University community in September.

Current students

For current students of Aston University, we are publishing updates such as health advice on our health and wellbeing page.