COVID-19 (coronavirus) Questions and Answers for Students

Archive notice

The content on this page has been replaced by a newer version. Go to Changes at Stirling for 2020 for up-to-date information on COVID-19 and what you need to to. 

Last updated: 14 May 2020 (see archived messages)

14 May: Teaching in the Autumn Semester 2020

Dear Returning Undergraduate Student

I hope this message finds you and your loved ones safe and well. On behalf of all my colleagues, I would like to thank you for your hard work and resilience over the past few weeks, as our teaching and assessment had to be adjusted because of COVID-19. We appreciate how challenging the current situation may be for you, and all University staff are working hard to support students through this difficult time.

As this academic year ends, I want to give you an update on our approach to Autumn Semester teaching. Our intention is to start the semester as planned on 14 September and we are working closely with government to ensure this is delivered in the safest possible manner, in line with guidance and restrictions.

University buildings are presently closed due to the current lockdown restrictions, and we are awaiting news from government on how and when those may change. Given that some form of social distancing restrictions will be in force for months to come, and the difficulties of operating our campus facilities under those restrictions, it is unlikely that we will be fully operational on campus for the coming semester.

Therefore, until it is safe to return, it is likely that teaching will be online and, unless government guidance changes markedly, you will not return to campus initially. We can reassure you that we will continue to deliver high quality learning throughout this period, and your degrees will not be affected by the situation.

We have started a process of developing all teaching, which was previously delivered face-to-face, into technology-enabled education. This means that you can study your autumn modules partially or entirely online, if required. This approach is very different to the emergency remote teaching you may have experienced since March – when we had little time to prepare under challenging circumstances.

The technology-enabled education that will be in place for your return in September involves rich, engaging materials, live sessions and some short pre-recorded sessions, group or individual tasks, and regular formative assessment to check how you’re doing. It will often offer more regular contact with academics and fellow students than in traditional face-to-face teaching. This is a positive move that will offer you a high quality experience and enhance your learning, even once face-to face teaching resumes.

Alongside our planning for teaching, we are already delivering our support services online and are developing an enhanced online personal tutoring and student life programme. You may already be familiar with our Be Connected programme which will be further enhanced during semester time. The Students’ Union, clubs and societies are already adapting to moving online. There will be a good balance in our digital modules of content and contact, to help you build a connection with your classmates and teachers.

We understand that you may be unfamiliar with digital tools and are anxious about learning in this way, but we will provide training and support to help you develop your digital skills. These skills are also going to be increasingly important to the world of work, where working remotely looks like becoming “the new normal”. Our aim is to equip you with industry standard digital skills to enhance your employability once you graduate from Stirling.

We are also aware that it might be difficult for you to access a laptop and the internet, as some students are in this position for a variety of reasons. If that is the case then we will work with you to try to find solutions. We will provide more detail on this in due course.

The situation continues to alter, and we are committed to resuming face-to-face teaching as soon as it is safe to do so. Be assured, we will keep you updated on developments and any changes as government policy develops. Module choices will be released during July, with updated details on content and assessment.

If you have now completed your assessments, I hope you have a good break over the summer. For those of you who have still some assessments outstanding, we are here to support you over the coming months. We look forward to your return to teaching in September.

If you need support please reach out to your personal tutor, and always remember that the Student Support Services and Student Learning Services are available to help. If your intention is to return to University accommodation, our Accommodation Service will keep you updated as matters develop. 

Best wishes

Professor Leigh Sparks
Deputy Principal (Education and Students)

Previous messages for students

Dear Student

In recent days, the situation around Coronavirus (COVID-19) has evolved significantly – with a number of cases now identified in Scotland and a growing number across the UK. The Scottish and UK Governments indicate that they expect, and are preparing for, a larger outbreak.

Please be reassured that the University is also preparing and has an action plan which includes a number of measures designed to reduce risk.

We are liaising closely with relevant government agencies, including Health Protection Scotland, and receive regular updates which enable us to act safely, correctly, and in a timely manner to any changes in the situation.

The health and wellbeing of everyone in our University community is of paramount importance and we will act accordingly to minimise any risks posed by COVID-19. We are also working to ensure that any disruption to University life is minimised – but safety will always be our first consideration in all decisions we take.

Advice and questions

A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page has been produced to provide information for the University community on COVID-19, and I encourage you to make use of this valuable source of information. The pages will be updated as the situation evolves.

Key to efforts to contain COVID-19 is good hygiene practice and we urge everyone across the University to follow the guidance from NHS Scotland:-

  • Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze
  • Bin the tissue
  • To kill germs, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, or use a sanitiser gel

Health advice, including what you should do in the event of developing symptoms and self-isolation, as well as travel guidance is available via the following government agency websites:

Travel

The UK Government has identified areas and countries where people may be at heightened risk of contracting COVID-19. These specific countries and areas are being grouped as Category 1 or Category 2 – dependent upon the level of risk – and full details about these can be found on the NHS Inform Scotland website, as well as the UK Government’s COVID-19 guidance website.

If you have plans to travel in the near future, we recommend that you regularly check for updates and consider whether your travel is essential. A full list of countries and associated travel advice, including around COVID-19, can be viewed on the UK Government Foreign Office travel advice website.

Regular updates

The situation around COVID-19 is constantly evolving and it is important to follow official advice and check for updates. The University is liaising closely with all relevant agencies, at a local and national level. Please be reassured that we will continue to provide regular updates on government advice, as well as any University-specific updates.

Information will continue to be shared via the University’s internal communications channels, including Portal and Student Bulletin. Please continue to refer to these valuable sources of information.

Eileen Schofield
University Secretary and Chief Operating Officer

Dear Student

The situation around Coronavirus (COVID-19) has evolved significantly in recent days, with the World Health Organisation confirming the outbreak as a pandemic and the UK Government moving from the ‘contain’ to ‘delay’ phase.

The health and wellbeing of our University community is paramount. We understand that you will be concerned about COVID-19 and can assure you that the University is working closely with relevant government agencies, including Health Protection Scotland. At this time, there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at the University, and we must continue to ensure the importance of maintaining good hygiene across campus.

In line with Scottish Government guidance, the University remains open and teaching continues. I can confirm that our Faculties are making preparations for remote learning, should this be required at any time. I would also like to reassure you that contingency plans are being put in place for assessment and exams, should this be required.

We are continuing to receive regular updates and expert guidance from the UK and Scottish Governments and other relevant agencies, enabling us to act safely, correctly, and in a timely manner to any changes in the situation.

Health and wellbeing

In line with the latest guidance, if you have symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 – a fever or a new persistent cough – however mild, you should stay at home for seven days from the onset of your symptoms. This action will help protect fellow students, staff and the wider community. Read the latest advice in full on the NHS Inform website. You do not need to call NHS 24 (111) to go into self-isolation, however, if your symptoms worsen, or are no better after seven days, then you should phone your GP or NHS 24 (111). For a medical emergency, dial 999.

If you don’t have symptoms, please visit the NHS Inform website or phone 0800 028 2816 for general advice on COVID-19.

Prevention

I would again like to remind you of the importance of good hygiene practice in the efforts to contain COVID-19. I urge everyone across the University to follow the guidance from NHS Inform. For the latest information and guidance on COVID-19, including health and travel advice, please visit:

Regular updates

The situation around COVID-19 is constantly evolving and it is important to follow official advice and check for updates. Information will continue to be shared via the University’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage, including frequently asked questions, and the Student Bulletin. Please continue to refer to these valuable sources of information.

I would like to, once again, provide reassurance that the University is taking all recommended steps and following expert guidance to reduce the risk of COVID-19 to our University community.

Thank you for your patience and understanding during these unprecedented and challenging times and I also extend my gratitude to those across the University, who have worked tirelessly in recent weeks to put in place plans to mitigate the impact of COVID-19.

Most importantly, and speaking on behalf of the University community, I send our thoughts and wishes to those affected by the virus.

We will continue to provide you with further information when it becomes available.

Eileen Schofield
University Secretary and Chief Operating Officer

Dear Student

Following further developments in the guidance around Coronavirus (COVID-19), the University of Stirling is introducing a range of temporary measures.

The health and wellbeing of our University community is of paramount importance and the action outlined below follows close consultation with, and guidance from, the UK and Scottish Governments and other relevant agencies, including Health Protection Scotland. 

The University will remain open but students who are concerned about being physically present on campus will not be asked to attend in person. To facilitate this we are making changes to the delivery of teaching, which will be conducted online from next week (w/c Monday, March 16). We will temporarily suspend all face-to-face teaching and physical exam sittings for all students. Exams will be administered online where possible. Other tests and tutorials will, insofar as possible, continue and be delivered online.

In summary:

  • Face-to-face teaching will be suspended from today – with lectures, seminars and tutorials delivered online until further notice. You should continue to complete academic requirements remotely andpay particular attention to communications from the University and your faculty, to stay informed of developments.
  • Physical exams and class tests for all students will be replaced by other forms of assessment, including, as indicated, online.
  • University-run facilities – such as the Library, Sports Centre, and Stirling Court Hotel – will remain open, however, opening hours may be altered to accommodate additional cleaning.

The temporary changes, as set out above, are intended to minimise the risk of COVID-19 and help to protect your health, and that of your fellow students, staff and visitors to the University. Our actions are consistent with expert guidance.

Thank you, once again, for your patience and understanding during these unprecedented and challenging times.

Eileen Schofield
University Secretary and Chief Operating Officer

Dear Student

In response to the nationally evolving Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our students and staff, at the end of last week the University took the decision to suspend face-to-face teaching.

The last 24 hours has demonstrated the fluidity of the situation, with a marked increase in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the UK. In light of this, the most up-to-date advice from the UK and Scottish Governments is that proactive steps should be taken to minimise transmission. This includes avoiding non-essential travel, limiting social gatherings, home-working where possible, and an extended isolation period for at-risk groups. 

While some students have already left the campus, the delivery of essential services is required to support those who continue to live in student accommodation and access facilities on campus.  Therefore in keeping with the latest guidance on social distancing, and to ensure these services can be delivered safely, we are asking students who are living in University accommodation to adhere to these guidelines.

Please note that a separate communication will issue directly from the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport to our nursing students in due course, in light of specific government guidance for healthcare students.

Phased reduction of on-campus services

To eliminate all unnecessary risk and to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, the University is preparing for a phased reduction of on-campus services from today, Tuesday 17 March, 2020.

Please refer to the relevant webpages for more detailed information including specific opening times and contact details.  

The following measures are in place:

  • Sport: all campus sports facilities and activities will close from 10pm tonight, Tuesday 17 March 2020. Further information on the changes to sport can be found on this dedicated webpage.
  • Library: reduced opening hours throughout this week (8am – 8pm, Tuesday – Thursday; 8am – 5pm, Friday). The Library will close at 5pm on Friday 20 March until further notice, with all access moving online.
  • Catering outlets: Refresh (Willow Court Residences) will remain open from 9am to 9pm daily to student residents only, with an all-day menu. Members of staff will ask for student identification before service can be provided. All other food outlets will close at the end of business on Friday 20 March until further notice.
  • Pharmacy: open 9.30am- 5.00pm, Monday - Friday (closed daily 1.00pm to 2.00pm for cleaning).
  • Nisa shop: open 8am – 8pm, Monday – Sunday.
  • Willow Court, phone: 01786 466952 or email: willowcourt@stir.ac.uk and Union Street reception (Stirling City centre) will have 24-hour emergency cover with a staff member present (please note that students should contact AS by telephone or email).
  • Student Services Hub: closed until further notice, but enquiries will continue to be managed via phone and email. Details of phone, email services and contact hours are online.
  • Stirling Court Hotel: will close from Monday 23 March, until further notice.
  • Events: All University-run events set to take place before 15 June have been cancelled – including PG Open Day on 25 March (virtual open day events will take place on 29 April and 20 May); UG Applicant Day 18 April and UG Open Day on 6 June.
  • Students’ Union: commercial outlets will close from Wednesday 18 March; Union shop will close on Friday 20 March. Details relevant to clubs and events to follow.

Teaching and Learning

The learning outcomes of our students remains a priority and you are required to continue to fulfil academic requirements remotely. Your faculty will be in touch directly by the end of the week, to advise on arrangements for online teaching. It is anticipated that information in relation to assessment will be finalised by the end of the month. I recognise you may be anxious about your learning experience, but please be assured that we will do everything we can to support you – managing these changes is not easy and we are trying to provide all relevant information to you as quickly as possible.

If you have any concerns over your coursework or upcoming assessments, please contact your faculty for support.

Health and Wellbeing

Our main priority is to ensure the health and wellbeing of our students and staff at this time. The situation we face is unprecedented and presents difficult, complicated challenges for everyone. As a University, we are continuing to work through these and your understanding and cooperation is greatly appreciated. Please do not take any risks and continue to take care of yourself and look after those around you.

We will continue to share any new information as it becomes available and I encourage you to keep checking our dedicated COVID-19 webpage for updates.

Professor Gerry McCormac
Principal and Vice-Chancellor

Dear Student 

As the global Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation continues to evolve  rapidly,  developments  over the past few days have seen lives change immeasurably.

As we all try to comprehend, adapt and cope as best we can in these challenging and unprecedented times, please be reassured that the University has taken major steps to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our students and staff. This has included the suspension of face-to-face teaching, the closure of buildings and  the  reduction of on-campus services  to all but essential  services.  Our academic staff continue to support your learning outcomes through online teaching, and we are in the process of finalising plans for alternative assessments - and an update on these arrangements is expected by the end of the month.

Today  we are  implementing a raft of further measures, in line with government guidance, in response to the ongoing situation.

Graduation June 2020 

In light of the current situation, and the expert advice we are receiving on a daily basis, we have had to take the very difficult decision to cancel all of our June graduation ceremonies. While I understand this will be very disappointing for students and their families, the health and wellbeing of our  University  community – and the general public – is of paramount importance and must be our primary concern. 

Students due to graduate at these ceremonies will graduate in absentia – and will receive their letters of award and, where appropriate, transcripts, electronically by mid-July 2020. We hope to still celebrate with these students at a later date – with plans being put in place to invite  them  to future ceremonies.

Further details are available below. 

Accommodation, car parking and sports membership refunds 

We are putting processes  in place for students who have chosen to leave their University accommodation to be released  early  from their tenancy contracts, and  we  will not require students,  for  whom  it is  necessary to remain living in University accommodation during this  challenging period,  to pay beyond their current contract. We will also cease  taking  payment  for  car parking permits and sports centre memberships  from April. Further details are available in the FAQs below and the .

Buildings 

Many University buildings – including Stirling Court Hotel – are now closed to students, staff and visitors until further notice. Please  note, currently,  the following outlets remain  open for the delivery of essential services to those living on campus: 

  • Refresh (Willow Court Residences) will remain open Friday 27-Sunday 29 March as a takeaway service to student residents only, with an all-day menu (Friday to 9pm, Saturday 9am to 9pm and Sunday 9am to 8pm).  We’re aware that, with the necessary restrictions on movement and social distancing, students are not using Refresh. We will therefore close the takeaway service at Refresh at 8pm Sunday 29 March;
  • Pharmacy, from  9.30am  to  5pm, Monday - Friday (closed daily 1pm to 2pm for cleaning);  
  • Nisa  shop: open 8am – 8pm, Monday – Sunday. 

I realise that this is a worrying time for you and your loved-ones and want to reassure you once again that we are doing everything we can to protect our students, staff and the wider public from the risk posed by COVID-19.  Students with specific queries around financial difficulties or visa issues should see the FAQs below for advice, while professional guidance is also available through the Student Services Hub. The Hub is still offering its full suite of services remotely.

I understand that this situation has led to significant disruption to your University life; however, your health and wellbeing will always be our priority  and we will continue to support you as best we can. Please continue to stay safe and look after each other.  The situation remains fluid and we are working through  a large number of  complex issues, so please bear with us and we  will provide further updates as they become  available.

Best wishes

Professor Gerry  McCormac 
Principal and Vice-Chancellor 

Dear Student

Thank you for your patience in awaiting further guidance on the examinations and assessments for this semester. We recognise that this is a challenging time, and I am grateful to you all for engaging with your online learning during this period. 

As the Principal has outlined, all the steps we are taking are intended to minimise the risk of COVID-19 and help to protect your health, and that of your fellow students, staff and visitors to the University.

The changes set out in this guidance are designed to ease the burden on you, while allowing you to progress through your degree.

We have developed guidance in the form of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and hope this gives you the information you need at this time. Please read the FAQs carefully - full details can be found here.

The key points of the new arrangements to note are:

For students in year 1 and 2 undergraduate programmes:

  • All students will progress to study next year
  • Examinations and most further coursework are cancelled in all programmes except professionally accredited programmes as required by Professional Bodies (these are named clearly in the FAQs and where coursework is required to enable us to assess your performance. Your Faculty will confirm the requirements where this is the case, by 1 April
  • Where assessment of your module is complete, you will receive your grade as normal
  • Where examinations or further coursework have been cancelled, you will be awarded a pass/fail grade on the basis of your coursework to date. Students who have failed modules will be given the opportunity to recover the position and thus obtain the credit needed to obtain their degree. We will provide advice and guidance on your options to achieve this

For students on professional undergraduate programmes in years 1 and 2, undergraduates in years 3  and 4, and taught postgraduate students:

  • Examinations will be replaced with remote examinations or alternative assessments
  • The timetable for the release of assessments and instructions for completing assessments will be available from 1 April
  • We will support you through this challenging time, to achieve your potential

I recognise particular further circumstances may apply to our postgraduate taught students and will be writing separately to address this.

Your Faculties will be in touch with details of your assessments in the timescales set out above. In the meantime, I would once again like to remind you that Student Support Services are available to anyone who is experiencing concerns or stress relating to their studies. If this applies to you or somebody you know, you can contact the team by phoning: +44 (0) 1786 466022, or emailing: ask@stir.ac.uk.

Professor Leigh Sparks
Deputy Principal (Education and Students)

Dear Student

Over the last couple of weeks our University community has transitioned to new ways of operating. Our main priority has been to ensure that we continue to support you to achieve your learning outcomes. Within a short period of time we have delivered a major transformation to the way teaching and assessment are delivered and I want to thank you for your patience while we have worked to put these arrangements in place. It is also extremely encouraging to see how well students are engaging with online delivery.

I recognise, however, that adjusting to this new way of studying in ‘lockdown’ brings with it additional stresses for students – from the impact of social distancing to managing additional caring responsibilities. Conscious of the significant demands placed on all of us – I know many of you are juggling study, work and domestic arrangements – and in order to provide some additional breathing space at this difficult time, the University has decided to extend this year’s Easter break to include leave on Thursday 9 April and Tuesday 14 April. We are aware that in a small number of modules, some classes or assignments have been scheduled on these days; your module coordinator will be in touch to reschedule these for after Easter. The Library and Canvas will continue to be available online and students will have access to all materials.

I’m proud of the way in which our University community has pulled together during this extremely difficult time and we are doing everything we can to try to support you. Please continue to follow the Government advice and guidance and look after yourself, your families and those around you.

However you choose to use your break – whether it is to pause, spend time with family or catch up on your studies — I hope the extra personal time will be beneficial.

Thank you again for your patience and understanding, it is very much appreciated.

Yours sincerely

Professor Gerry McCormac
Principal and Vice-Chancellor

Principal speaking on Monday 23 March:

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Find answers to frequently asked questions below, as the global situation and response to the COVID-19 outbreak continues to develop. We will regularly update this page with more information as it becomes available.

For the latest information visit:

Please note: Anybody who believes they may have COVID-19 should phone their GP practice or NHS 24 (111). Do not go to your GP practice in person – instead phone for advice from home.

If you do not have symptoms and are looking for general information on COVID-19, a free helpline has been set up: 0800 028 2816. The helpline is open: Monday to Friday, 8am to 10pm; and Saturday and Sunday, 9am to 5pm.

Contents

Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is the illness caused by a new strain of coronavirus first identified in Wuhan city, China. It can cause a continuous cough and/or a fever/high temperature.

Generally, COVID-19 can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people and those with long term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.

Health advice, including what you should do in the event of developing symptoms and self-isolation, is available on the NHS Inform website.

More general information about COVID-19 in Scotland is available via the Scottish Government Coronavirus guidance website.

The following websites provide useful information and advice:

If you do not have symptoms and are looking for general information on COVID-19, a free helpline has been set up: 0800 028 2816. The helpline is open: Monday to Friday, 8am to 10pm; and Saturday and Sunday, 9am to 5pm.

NHS Scotland has prepared a guide which details what to do next if you have developed symptoms and are worried about COVID-19. This is available on the NHS Inform website It is important that you follow the official guidance

If you live in University accommodation, inform the Accommodation Services team using the following details:

Your residence

Report to: (if emailing, please send to both email addresses)

Alexander Court (townhouses, family flats and standard flats)

Email:

alexandercourt@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Alexander Court +44 (0) 1786 466094 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Juniper Court

Muirhead House

Email:

juniper@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Juniper Court +44 (0) 1786 466985 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Beech Court

Willow Court

Polwarth House

Email:

beech@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Beech Court +44 (0) 1786 466972 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Andrew Stewart Hall

H.H. Donnelly House

Fraser of Allander House

Pendreich Way

Alangrange

Email:

andrewstewarthall@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Andrew Stewart Hall +44 (0) 1786 466960 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

John Forty’s Court

Spittal Hill

Lyon Crescent

Union St Bridge of Allan

Email:

johnfortyscourt@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

John Forty’s Court +44 (0) 1786 466977 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Union Street

Lower Bridge Street

Bayne Street

Thistle Chambers

Email:

unionstthistle@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Union Street +44 (0) 1786 466978 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

Centro House

 

Email:

CentroHouseReception@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Centro House +44 (0) 1786 466985 (24 hours Mon-Fri, 7pm-7am Sat & Sun)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

NHS Scotland advises that, generally, COVID-19 can cause more severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, underlying and long-term conditions, and older people.

If this is you, please continue to closely monitor official government advice on how you can best minimise the risk. This information is available via the NHS Inform website.

You may also wish to contact your GP or NHS Scotland’s COVID-19 information helpline on 0800 028 2816. The helpline is open: Monday to Friday, 8am to 10pm; and Saturday and Sunday, 9am to 5pm.

Current advice from NHS Scotland on self-isolation and living with a family member or friend who is displaying symptoms is available via the NHS Inform ‘Stay at Home’ webpage.

Practicing good personal hygiene is key to reducing the risk of catching and spreading respiratory infections, such as COVID-19. NHS Scotland has issued guidance on this which includes:

  • avoiding direct hand contact with your eyes, nose and mouth
  • maintaining good hand hygiene - washing hands with soap and water, or alcohol hand sanitiser, before eating and drinking, and after coughing, sneezing and going to the toilet
  • avoiding direct contact with people that have a respiratory illness and avoiding using their personal items such as their mobile phone
  • covering your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing with disposable tissues and disposing of them in the nearest waste bin after use

The latest UK Government advice urges social distancing measures, limiting social gatherings, and avoiding non-essential travel – including by local and regional public transport.

The latest government health advice emphasises the importance of social distancing in helping to reduce the transmission of COVID-19. In practical terms, this means you should avoid: contact with anyone displaying symptoms of COVID-19; non-essential use of public transport; large gatherings and those in smaller public spaces; and gatherings with friends and family.

During this challenging time, we encourage you to make use of technology – including your phone and the internet – to keep in touch with friends and family and to contact your GP, or access other essential services.

Please also maintain good personal hygiene – including regularly washing your hands – in addition to social distancing to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The Scottish Government has published national guidance on public use of face masks and coverings, this can be viewed on its dedicated webpage here.

Social distancing, self-isolation, and good hygiene, continue to be the most important and effective measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Therefore the wearing of facial coverings must not be used as an alternative to any of these other precautions.

The evidence on the use of face coverings is limited, but there may be some benefit in wearing a facial covering when you leave the house and enter enclosed spaces, especially where social distancing is more difficult and where there is a risk of close contact with multiple people you do not usually meet. Examples include, traveling on public transport or entering a food shop where it is not always possible to maintain a 2 metre distance from another customer. There is no evidence to suggest there might be a benefit outdoors, unless in an unavoidable crowded situation, where there may be some benefit.

University arrangements and support

The University has been liaising closely with all relevant government agencies throughout the COVID-19 situation and has put in place a range of mitigation measures.

To help safeguard the health and well-being of everyone, and in keeping with government advice, the University has suspended face-to-face teaching. In addition, we have put in to place measures to reduce the risk of transmission, including: cancelling all University-run events, set to take place before 15 June, including PG Open Day on 25 March and UG Applicant Day on 18 April – online events will be held instead; a phased closure of non-essential facilities and services on campus; staff being advised to work from home, where possible.  

At this time, it is important that the number of people on campus is kept limited as this will ensure essential services can be carried out as safely as possible. 

Again, we urge all students and staff to follow government advice to ensure we all play a part in helping to minimise the risk of spreading COVID-19. Please follow the good hygiene guidance from NHS Protect Scotland, which is available on the COVID-19 information website.

We understand this is a concerning time. In response to the nationally evolving Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation and to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our students and staff, the University took the decision (Friday 13 March) to suspend face-to-face teaching. Lectures, seminars and tutorials are now being delivered online and this will continue for the remainder of this semester.

Faculties are working to finalise alternative arrangements for assessment. Most coursework will continue to be submitted via Canvas as normal – arrangements for online exams or alternative assessments will be communicated to you in the coming weeks.

If you have any concerns over your coursework or upcoming assessments, please contact your faculty for support.

Faculty of Arts and Humanities
T: +44 (0) 1786 467561
E: administrator@stir.ac.uk

Faculty of Natural Sciences
T: +44 (0) 1786 467840
E: enquiries@stir.ac.uk

The Faculty of Social Sciences
T: +44 (0) 1786 467740
E: FoSSFacultyOffice@stir.ac.uk

Stirling Management School
T: +44 (0) 1786 467370
E: management@stir.ac.uk

Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport
T: +44 (0) 1786 466340
E: faculty.office@stir.ac.uk

If you require support, please contact the Student Services Hub by phoning: +44 (0) 1786 466022, or emailing: ask@stir.ac.uk.

We understand people will have concerns around COVID-19, particularly those who may have family or friends who have been impacted by the outbreak. Our thoughts are with those who have been affected.

We would also like to take this opportunity to remind you all of Student Support Services which are available to anyone who is experiencing concerns or stress.

will continue to provide 1-1 services and appointments, but these will be delivered either online or by phone until further notice. A full list support services offered, and opening times for the telephone and email services, please visit the Student Services Hub webpage. You can contact the team phoning: +44 (0) 1786 466022, or emailing: ask@stir.ac.uk

The Careers and Employability Service is continuing to operate a service during the Covid-19 outbreak. This will be done remotely. We understand this is an anxious and uncertain time for everyone. See how you can get in touch and our ongoing support for students and staff  and for graduates.

The University promotes a welcoming culture of equality, diversity and inclusion for our diverse University community, where everyone can feel safe, valued and supported. The University will not tolerate racism in any form from members of the University and deprecate any such behaviour in the wider community of which we are a part. We encourage staff and students to report any incident of racial harassment and seek support. Call 999 if you’re reporting a crime that’s in progress or if someone is in immediate danger. You can also report hate crime online.

Any student who has concerns or thinks they – or somebody they know – may be discriminated against, harassed or mistreated as a result of this situation, should seek guidance and support from the , (email: ask@stir.ac.uk), or their Faculty office.

Assessment and exams

Campus facilities and support

We will be continuing to deliver essential services to support students living in University accommodation and other members of the University community who remain on campus.

At this time, it is important that the number of people on campus is kept limited as this will ensure essential services can be carried out as safely as possible.

Therefore, as part of our efforts to help reduce the risk of COVID-19, the University has introduced a phased reduction in campus services. Details as follows:

  • Sport: all activities stopped.
  • Library: the Library Building will close at 5pm on Friday 20 March until further notice, with all access moving online. Until that date, reduced opening hours will operate (8am – 8pm Tuesday – Thursday; 8am – 5pm Friday).
  • Catering outlets: Refresh (Willow Court Residences) will remain open from 9am to 9pm daily as a takeaway service to student residents only, with an all-day menu. All other food outlets will be closed at the end of business on Friday 20 March until further notice.
  • Pharmacy: open 9:30am – 5pm Monday – Friday (closed daily 1pm to 2pm for cleaning)
  • Nisa shop:open 8am – 8pm Monday – Sunday.
  • Accommodation Services: Beech Court reception (on-campus) and Union Street reception (Stirling City centre) will have 24 hour emergency cover with staff member present (please note that students should contact AS by telephone or email).
  • Student Services Hub: closed until further notice, but enquiries will continue to be managed via phone and email. Details of phone and email services, and contact hours are available on the Student Services website.
  • Stirling Court Hotel: is now closed. Please email stirlingvenues@stir.ac.uk with any urgent query you may have about bookings.
  • Events: All University-run events set to take place before 15 June have been cancelled – including Postgraduate Open Day on 25 March (virtual open day events will take place on 29 April and 20 May); UG Applicant Day 18 April and UG Open Day on 6 June.
  • Students’ Union: the Union's Officer and staff team remain available to students who require advocacy and to assist clubs, societies and sports teams. As the Offices and commercial outlets are now closed, please contact either individual Officers or email theunion@stir.ac.uk. You can also visit the Union website at www.stirlingstudentsunion.com for further information.

The University Library will close at 5pm on Friday 20 March, until further notice.

A reduced service will be in place until that date: Mon-Thurs 8am-8pm, Friday 8am – 5pm.

During the closure period, automatic renewal of library loans will be enabled so you need not return any borrowed items. This will also be the case with Short Loan items. Library electronic resources continue to be available via the Subject Research Guides and the library catalogue.

In light of the recent government and public health advice, the University's sports facilities and activities are closed, until further notice.

The safety and wellbeing of all students, staff, and members is of utmost importance and this has formed the basis of the decision. We thank you for your patience and understanding and relevant updates will be shared via the regular University Sport communication channels. .

Accommodation

With the suspension of face-to-face teaching, and implementation of tools to support remote learning many students have chosen to return home, but some students do remain in University accommodation.

Please be reassured that University accommodation remain open, along with support and essential services – including the campus pharmacy and Airthrey Park Medical Centre.

We want to reassure you that we will continue to deliver essential services to support students through this challenging time.

We ask all students living in University accommodation to adhere to the official government guidelines around good personal hygiene and social distancing measures. This will support us to continue delivering essential services in the safest possible manner.

NHS Scotland has prepared a guide which details what to do next if you have developed symptoms and are worried about COVID-19. This is available on the NHS Inform website It is important that you follow the official guidance

If you live in University accommodation, inform the Accommodation Services team using the following details:

Your residence

Report to: (if emailing, please send to both email addresses)

Alexander Court (townhouses, family flats and standard flats)

Email:

alexandercourt@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Alexander Court +44 (0) 1786 466094 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Juniper Court

Muirhead House

Email:

juniper@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Juniper Court +44 (0) 1786 466985 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Beech Court

Willow Court

Polwarth House

Email:

beech@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Beech Court +44 (0) 1786 466972 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Andrew Stewart Hall

H.H. Donnelly House

Fraser of Allander House

Pendreich Way

Alangrange

Email:

andrewstewarthall@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Andrew Stewart Hall +44 (0) 1786 466960 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

John Forty’s Court

Spittal Hill

Lyon Crescent

Union St Bridge of Allan

Email:

johnfortyscourt@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

John Forty’s Court +44 (0) 1786 466977 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm)

Union Street

Lower Bridge Street

Bayne Street

Thistle Chambers

Email:

unionstthistle@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Union Street +44 (0) 1786 466978 (24/7)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

Centro House

 

Email:

CentroHouseReception@stir.ac.uk and accommodation@stir.ac.uk

 

Tel:

Centro House +44 (0) 1786 466985 (24 hours Mon-Fri, 7pm-7am Sat & Sun)

Willow Court +44 (0) 1786 467060 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

Current advice from NHS Scotland on self-isolation and living with a family member or friend who is displaying symptoms is available via the NHS Inform ‘Stay at Home’ webpage.

It is extremely important that you follow the official advice.

If you intend to return before the end of your contract please communicate this to the accommodation office by emailing accommodation@stir.ac.uk.

If you require accommodation after the end of your contract due to COVID-19 preventing you returning home at the end of your original contract period, this will be provided and no rent will be charged. This arrangement will be in place for the duration of the current travel restrictions arising from the COVID-19 situation.

Due to the challenging circumstances which COVID-19 has created, the University is waiving elements of its Occupancy Agreements in order to support students.

If you have left University accommodation, and have not already done so, please confirm this in writing with an email to accommodation@stir.ac.uk as soon as you can.

Once Accommodation Services receive your notification to leave accommodation and not return, a 28 day notice period to cancel your contract will begin. Regardless of what your usual monthly rent payments are, the amount you will pay for this notice period will be capped at £400. If your regular monthly rent is less than £400, you will pay the lower amount.

No. Your belongings are your responsibility, and will need to be packed up and removed when you leave campus. The University does not have storage capacity for this on campus.

If you plan to go home, please let us know by emailing accommodation@stir.ac.uk, clear your room of all waste, take all your belongings and leave your key at Willow Court or Union Street.

No, it is your responsibility to arrange mail redirection. You can arrange this via the Royal Mail website.

If you don’t plan on returning, please post these back to us within seven days via recorded delivery to the address below:

Willow Court
University of Stirling
Stirling
FK9 4QZ

If you intend to return before the end of your contract, and have not already done so, please communicate this to the accommodation office by emailing accommodation@stir.ac.uk. Please provide us with your expected return date when known.

If you do not intend to return, other than to collect your belongings, please email accommodation@stir.ac.uk  to let us know, if you have not already done so.

Please note, the government is currently advising against all non-essential travel so please do not return to collect your belongings until this advice changes.

Once Accommodation Services receive your notification to leave accommodation and not return, a 28 day notice period to cancel your contract will begin. Regardless of what your usual monthly rent payments are, the amount you will pay for this notice period will be capped at £400. If your regular monthly rent is less than £400, you will pay the lower amount.

If you plan to go home, please let us know by emailing accommodation@stir.ac.uk, clear your room of all waste, take all your belongings and leave your key at Willow Court or Union Street.

Due to the challenging circumstances which COVID-19 has created, the University is waiving elements of its Occupancy Agreements in order to support students.

If you plan to go home, please let us know by emailing accommodation@stir.ac.uk, clear your room of all waste, take all your belongings and leave your key at Willow Court or Union Street.  Once Accommodation Services receive your key and notification that you do not intend to return, a 28 day notice period to cancel your contract will begin. Regardless of what your usual monthly rent payments are, the amount you will pay for this notice period will be capped at £400. If your regular monthly rent is less than £400, you will pay the lower amount.

If you have left University accommodation, and have not already done so, please confirm this in writing with an email to accommodation@stir.ac.uk as soon as you can.

Any rent refund will be calculated after your 28 day notice period has passed. The accommodation team will prepare your final statement and send this to you by email. If you are due to have rent refunded we will ask you to send us details of your bank account and arrange the refund directly into that account. From receiving bank details, it can take up to four weeks for the money to be transferred to your bank account.

The decision to release you from your contract early rests with Centro Student Living Ltd not with the University. Centro Student Living Ltd have indicated they will not release students early from their accommodation contract. If you are facing any financial hardship you will be entitled to apply for assistance by contacting the Money Advice team at ask@stir.ac.uk

If this is the case please make contact with our Student Support team – ask@stir.ac.uk – who will be able to discuss any hardship funds you may be eligible for. Contact us at accommodation@stir.ac.uk if you want to review your payment plan.

You may also be eligible for discretionary fund support. Find out more about discretionary and assistance funds

Travel and work

The UK Government has issued an exceptional travel advisory notice (on 17 March 2020) - this advises British nationals against all but essential international travel to anywhere. This step has been taken as any country or area may restrict travel without notice due to the constantly evolving situation created by COVID-19. More information about this and travel advice for specific countries is available on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website.

The UK Government has also published specific advice for students planning to travel, and for those already overseas at this time. This can be accessed here.

The UK Government’s guidance to follow social distancing measures, includes advice to avoid using public transport unless it is essential. We encourage all students to follow official government advice which is designed to minimise the spread of COVID-19.

Local transport operator, First Bus, has published information regarding its current service provision to and from campus on its website Please review this information before undertaking any travel you deem essential.

Staying safe and ensuring you are following the government guidance designed to minimise the risk and spread of COVID-19 is of the utmost importance at this time.

Information about COVID-19, its symptoms, and guidance around self-isolating and social distancing rules is available on the NHS Inform website.

Please make sure you are aware of and understand that guidance before considering applying for any available temporary key worker roles in the Stirling area. A number of these opportunities can be viewed via the Invest In Stirling website and Canvas.

Research

Car parking

You are entitled to request a refund from April 2020 until the end of the term of your permit, this can be done by contacting the car parking office.

Graduation

Following guidance from the UK and Scottish Governments, and in order to safeguard the health and wellbeing of students, staff and visitors, the University has cancelled all of its graduation ceremonies that were scheduled to take place in June 2020. While we understand this will be very disappointing for students and their families, the health and wellbeing of our campus community – and the general public – must be our primary concern.

Students due to graduate at these ceremonies will now graduate in absentia – receiving their letters of award and, where appropriate, transcripts electronically by late June. We are planning to offer all our graduating students an opportunity to celebrate their achievements at a future University ceremony – further details will be communicated in due course.

 

Yes. The University will make sure that all eligible students graduate in absentia in summer 2020, and receive both their letter of award (confirming the degree that the University has granted them) and, where appropriate, their transcripts (confirming the modules and marks achieved as part of the degree, and some wider achievements within the University). The letter of award and transcripts will be sent to each graduating student electronically, in PDF format, by late June.

We aim to prepare and print certificates as soon as possible, once it is appropriate for staff to return to University buildings. When certificates are ready, graduates can choose to have their certificate posted to them or to collect it.

The graduation ceremonies in June 2020 are cancelled to protect students, staff and visitors from the virus – your health and wellbeing will always be our priority.

Graduates will receive their awards electronically by mid-July. This will allow graduates to proceed with any work or further study opportunities (for which evidence of a degree certificate is often required) before being invited back to campus for a rescheduled ceremony, once the virus threat has passed.

We know how much graduation means to graduates, their families and our proud staff. The Class of 2020 will have the opportunity to don their robes, take to the stage and celebrate their achievements with friends and loved-ones and details of the rescheduled ceremonies will be shared once confirmed.

The University will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and will confirm revised ceremony dates as soon as we are able to. We will ensure that sufficient advance notice of the dates is provided to enable graduating students and their families to make plans to attend.

Yes. The University will contact you by email and information will also be published on our website and via social media.

Ede & Ravenscroft will be happy to transfer your academic dress hire and/or photography order to a new date, simply contact them on the details below and they will move your booking to the new ceremony date when this is confirmed. If you would rather receive a refund for your booking for the June 2020 graduation ceremonies, then please follow these steps:

  • Have your student ID number and booking reference to hand. Your reference can be found in your confirmation email sent from Ede & Ravenscroft.
  • Call the Ede & Ravenscroft customer service team on +44 (0)1223 734 759, between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

All Graduation Ball tickets will be refunded automatically. You do not need to do anything to obtain your refund. A refund will be processed to the card/account originally used for payment and this should be completed no later than Thursday 9 April 2020.

We are exploring options to be able to hold the Graduation Ball at a later date to coincide with new ceremony dates. Further details will be provided in due course, as our planning progresses.

Yes. If you have made an accommodation booking, either directly with the University or via a third party online travel agent (e.g. booking.com), you will receive a full refund when you cancel the booking.

To cancel your booking contact stirlingvenues@stir.ac.uk or your online travel agent with the booking details. If you paid in advance, your purchasing card will be refunded – alternatively you will not be charged.

Please note that it may take a little longer than usual to process your refund, however, we are striving to do this as quickly as possible.

If your visa has expired at the time you attend a future ceremony, you and any family members travelling to the UK for the purposes of attending a ceremony will need to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa. Information about these can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/standard-visitor-visa

All correspondence will be via email to your personal email address. Information will also be published on the University website and social media.

The University recognises that cancelling your graduation ceremony may have affected your travel arrangements. Whilst we are sympathetic to your circumstances, the decision to cancel, due to the outbreak of COVID-19, was taken to safeguard the health of our students, the families and friends of graduating students, our members of staff and the general public. The outbreak itself is outside the University’s control and we cannot offer you compensation for any ancillary costs incurred in preparation to attend graduation.

We would advise you to contact your travel provider for information on cancelling or delaying travel. Similarly, if you have travel insurance, we would advise you to contact your provider for information regarding the extent of your coverage in these circumstances.

Financial hardship

The University can provide a range of different support and advice for students facing financial difficulty. Please contact the Student Services Hub on 01786 466022 or email ask@stir.ac.uk for further information.

You may also be eligible for discretionary fund support. Find out more about 

You can also refer to the money support webpages for further information.

Tuition fees

If your circumstances require you to take a break from your studies, we will also be as flexible as possible in terms of fee payments. If you take a period of leave of absence, you will be able to do so with no financial detriment in that we will suspend fee payments until the point you return to study. At that point, the amount you will have left to pay will be the same as if you had not taken the leave of absence. 

If you are thinking about withdrawing, please talk to us about this first so that we can support and advise you as much as possible. If you do decide to withdraw, you will only be charged tuition fees for the semesters you have completed, and therefore the fee amount you are required to pay will be worked out on a pro-rata basis.  

If you are experiencing financial difficulties and wish to discuss varying your tuition fee payment plan please contact the Income Team in the Finance Department at income.office@stir.ac.uk.