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Back to COVID-19 information

We look forward to welcoming you to our international community of students from more than 120 countries. 

Aston University is aware that the outbreak of Coronavirus may be causing concern and disruption to offer-holders. We will continue to show flexibility and will publish regular updates on this page. 

Term will start as planned for new students on 21 September 2020. For most students, this will be through a blended learning approach in which lectures will be delivered online until at least January 2021, and a number of small group learning sessions and activities held on campus. Read about the Aston Student Pledge.

  • 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. 
  • For those who use Facebook, we will also post updates in our exclusive Facebook groups for postgraduate (master's) offer-holders and undergraduate (bachelor's) 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.

For offer-holders who are experiencing disruption due to the outbreak of Coronavirus:
 

Undergraduate and Foundation offer-holders

For those who use Facebook, we will post updates in our exclusive Facebook group for undergraduate (bachelor's) offer-holders. To join the group, you will be asked for your name, course and Aston ID, which you can find in the email invite or offer letter. 

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. 

  • If you hold an offer for an undergraduate (bachelors) or foundation course at Aston University, we will extend your deposit payment deadline to 20th July 2020. Please note EU students applying for a student loan in the UK to cover their tuition fees do not need to pay a deposit. 
  • If you have been asked to attend an interview at Aston University, we can make alternative arrangements so that you don’t have to travel. Please contact Undergraduate Admissions.
  • If you are having difficulty paying your deposit due to disruptions caused by Coronavirus, please contact us at ask@aston.ac.uk (please make sure to provide your 9 digit student application ID number).
  • If you pay your deposit and the impact of Coronavirus prevents you from arriving for your course in September 2020, you will have the opportunity to defer your course to September 2021 (depending on your course).
  • If you decide against an alternative start date, you may request a refund in accordance with section 11 of our tuition fee charging policy. If you request a refund of your deposit, you should provide evidence that the impact of Coronavirus has prevented you from arriving for your course.

Examples of evidence which you may need to provide under the ‘natural disasters’ category are: 1) documentation showing that the official travel advice from your home country advises against travel to the UK due to Coronavirus or 2) documentation from an official source (e.g. World Health Organisation or Public Health England) advising that if you travel from your current area of domicile to the UK you would be subject to quarantine restrictions.

Postgraduate offer-holders

If you use Facebook, we will post updates in our exclusive Facebook group for postgraduate (master's) offer-holders. To join the group, you will be asked for your name, course and Aston ID, which you can find in the email invite or offer letter.

If you use WeChat, we will 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. 

  • Accepting your place and paying your deposit: We understand that you may wish to accept your place but may not feel confident in paying the deposit right now. To give you some added flexibility and reassurance, we have removed the previous deposit deadline of 23rd May. Instead, we would like to encourage you to accept your place online, and to pay your deposit  three months before your programme is due to start.  Please note EU students applying for a loan in the UK to cover their tuition fees do not need to pay a deposit. You will need to send us proof of your loan application at pgadmissions@aston.ac.uk
  • By accepting your place at Aston without paying your deposit, we can continue to provide you with the latest information on our teaching plans for September (which relate specifically to your course). 
  • If you pay your deposit and the impact of Coronavirus prevents you from arriving for your course in September 2020, you will have the opportunity to defer your course to begin in January or September 2021 (depending on your course).
  • If you decide against an alternative start date, you may request a refund in accordance with section 11 of our tuition fee charging policy. If you request a refund of your deposit, you should provide evidence that the impact of Coronavirus has prevented you from arriving for your course.

Examples of evidence which you may need to provide under the ‘natural disasters’ category are: 1) documentation showing that the official travel advice from your home country advises against travel to the UK due to Coronavirus or 2) documentation from an official source (e.g. World Health Organisation or Public Health England) advising that if you travel from your current area of domicile to the UK you would be subject to quarantine restrictions.

What are Aston University’s teaching plans for September 2020?

All our new students will start their studies as planned on 21 September 2020, through a blended learning approach that combines both online and on-campus teaching.

What does this mean?

  • Lectures will be delivered online for the first term until at least January 2021. 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.

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.

UK Graduate Immigration Route

For Tier 4 visa students who are unable to attend their studies in person due to COVID-19 disruption, the UK Government has confirmed that distance or blended learning is permitted in 2020/21. These students will still be eligible for the new Graduate Route if they enter the UK before 6 April 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.

For full details, read the UK Government guidance. Caveats include that students must 'intend to transition to face-to-face learning as soon as circumstances allow'.

I have an offer to study at Aston in September 2020. What will happen if I am unable to attend in September?

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. The latest information relating to EU fees for 2021 can be found on the UCAS website. The University is currently reviewing EU fees in response to the government announcements and will publish EU fees for 2021 in due course. If you wish to register your interest in Aston University and be kept up to date with the most recent announcements, please review our course pages and leave your details at the bottom of the page of the course you are interested in.

Courses starting in January 2021

If you are unable to attend in September then we have a range of postgraduate courses available starting in January 2021. Our courses are taught by industry experts, and will offer you unique opportunities for real-world experience. When you’re ready to study with us, we’re ready to transform your career.

If you hold an offer to study with us in September 2020, you may have the option to defer your course to begin in January 2021. To defer your course, you will need to complete our deferral request form which will be available on the January 2021 courses page soon. Pre-Sessional English courses for the January 2021 intake will also be available.

Can’t see your course listed? We are working to offer more courses starting in January 2021, please check the January 2021 courses page regularly for new course additions.

EU students who intend to apply for a student loan to cover their tuition fees will still be eligible to apply if they start their course in January 2021. For the most up to date information please refer to the official government website. For further information about how Brexit will affect EU students’ arrangements to study in the UK  you can check our Updates on Brexit page. 

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. 
Acommodation 
We are working with our accommodation provider to ensure a fair and flexible approach to how you can book and pay for your accommodation. More information will follow soon.
English language requirements

We accept a wide range of English language qualifications including IELTS Academic, TOEFL, PTE Academic, IELTS Indicator, TOEFL iBT Home Edition, Password and the Aston Online English Test. We also accept the Duolingo English Test (for entry onto Pre-Sessional English programmes, not for direct entry).

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 September 2020 entry

Summary of updated Pre-Sessional English options:

  • The 18-week Pre-Sessional English course has been cancelled.
  • 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).
  • There is an option to take the Aston Online English Test for the 9-week and 5-week Pre-sessional English courses (see below).

18-week course 

This course has been cancelled. All students who had applied for this course have been contacted individually to discuss other options. If we have not yet managed to contact you successfully then please contact us at pre-sessional@aston.ac.uk or by calling +44 (0)121 204 4910 (please provide your 9-digit student application ID number) and we will help you to re-organise your study plans.

9-week course (online)

 
Course dates Entry requirements Accepted qualifications
6th July – 4th September 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)

Aston Online English Test (see below)

5-week course (online)

 
Course dates  Entry requirements  Accepted qualifications
3rd August – 4th September 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)

Aston Online English Test  (see below)

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.
Aston Online English Test

We know it is currently more difficult in some parts of the world to book an English language test such as IELTS. To support you to achieve your Aston offer conditions, if you need an English language qualification for your course starting in September, or for the Pre-Sessional English courses, you may take the Aston Online English Test.

Read more information about the Aston Online English Test.

Frequently asked questions:

  • Can I take the Aston Online English test to get the required grades for direct entry to a Masters course starting in January 2021? Yes, you can take the Aston Online English test to get the required grades (for direct entry) to start your main course in January 2021.
  • Can I take the Aston Online English test to join the summer online Pre-Sessional English courses, and then defer my main course to start in January 2021? Or can I only join the Pre-Sessional English courses starting in October 2020 for January 2021 courses? Yes, you can take the Aston Online English test to join the online 9-week and 5-week Pre-Sessional English courses this summer in order to progress to your main course in January 2021. Alternatively for courses starting in January 2021 there are Pre-Sessional English courses starting in October 2020. 

  • If I take the Aston Online English test and manage to get the grades for direct entry to my main course, can I transfer my Pre-Sessional English course deposit to be used as the deposit for my main course? Yes.

  • Can I take the Aston Online English test to join a shorter Pre-Sessional English course instead? Yes.

  • How can I prepare for the Aston Online English Test? Are there any practice tests available? We will be holding online sessions to help you prepare and we will also provide sample tests. See here for more information.

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 pages.