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  • Library Services

    Completed

    We worked closely with UCL to work towards restarting a service to allow students to begin to borrow books again. From 19 June Library Services have introduced a ‘Click and Collect’ service for books held at the Main and Science Libraries. The Service is be for UCL staff and postgraduate research students in the first instance. Books can be requested via Explore and collected from the Portico door at the Main Library.

    The first batch of books were made available on 24 June. A complementary service to scan and email journal articles and book chapters on request is also being scoped, provisionally for introduction in July.

    You can keep up to date with progress and the latest news on the Library Services website.

  • Plans for next academic year and reopening campus

    Working on it

    On 1 June UCL announced plans to be open and ready to teach for September 2020, with campus being open for in-person activity and small group teaching and larger group teaching taking place online.

    We’re confident that UCL’s approach will be aided by the expertise of its academic community, as well as guidance from the UK Government.

    We’re working every day to make sure UCL delivers what’s best for students. Our priority is to ensure that all students, regardless of where they’re studying or how they’re studying, receive a high-quality and equitable experience. We’ll continue to represent students on every decision UCL makes about next year.

  • Accommodation Costs for September 2020

    Working on it

    Update August: UCL have committed to re-instating the scheme, and the criteria is currently being looked at. More information can be found here.

    Update June: UCL suspended their Guarantor Scheme for new applications in relation to 2020-21. We are working to get UCL to reconsider this decision and reinstating the Guarantor Scheme. 

    UCL Accommodation are currently following Public Health England guidance on issuing rooms for September 2020 by only issuing en-suite rooms to ensure that students can safely self-isolate if required to. UCL Accommodation have informed new students that even if it's more expensive than the room they requested, they will be issued an en-suite room and be expected to pay the additional cost. 

    We're currently talking to the Provost and UCL Accommodation about supporting students who will be impacted financially by this decision.

  • Tuition Fee Refunds

    Working on it

    Update July: The UK Petitions Committee have responded to the petition to reimburse tuition fees, signed by more than 300,000 people. The Government have been given a set of recommendations to consider. You can read the report and recommendations here.

    Many of you have contacted us about tuition fee refunds. We are considering a policy position on this that will be debated at an upcoming Zone meeting. However, in the meantime we fully support NUS' Student Safety Net campaign which calls on the Government to issue reimbursements of fees or a debt write off, amongst other aims.

    UCL have said that although they can't refund tuition fees, but they will work with us on mitigation for lost academic experiences, including additional educational support for students when they graduate. We are working to make this as robust as possible. 

    UCL's Current Position

    The UK Government Department for Education has made clear that you should not expect any refund if you are receiving adequate online learning and support. However, if you don’t feel you are receiving adequate online learning and support, you have recourse through UCL’s Student Complaints process. Read the full letter to students from Professor Anthony Smith, Vice-Provost (Education and Student Affairs) here.

     

  • Students in financial difficulty due to loss of earnings

    Working on it

    Update August: Applications for the Financial Assistance Funds are now closed for new applications apart from to Postgraduate Research Students. However, applications for the 2020-21 academic year will open on Tuesday 1 September. In the meantime, if you are in need of urgent financial assistance applications to the UCL’s emergency assistance funds are still open. More information can be found on our webpage outlining the various COVID-19 financial support options

    Update JuneFor any students who had applied for the recent Learning Opportunities Fund, we are aware UCL originally aimed to inform you about the outcome on Friday 5 June. However, after chasing we have found out that this has been delayed. The team processing the applications are also processing requests for the Financial Assistance Fund and the volume of applications to both have caused the delays. They are hoping to get back to all students who have applied in the next week or so and we will continue to chase.

    UCL has also extended their financial assistance funds during these times. As well as the general Financial Assistance Fund, there is targeted support for specific students, in particular those who are self-funded. More information and how to apply can be found here

     

    There are now several ways to receive financial support or to compensate you on additional spending you've had to make as a result of changes to your circumstances.

    A full list of the support available is listed here.

  • Guidelines for transitioning to remote learning

    Completed

    We're seeking clarification on how students are being supported to move their learning online, both our Education Officer and Postgraduate Students' Officer are part of the Remote Teaching Delivery Group and will provide updates on this area.

    Current advice from UCL can be found here.

  • Lack of technology or internet restrictions

    Completed

    Update JuneMany of you have requested Zoom premium in order to perform research interviews, as many interview participants do not use Teams. We have raised this issue with UCL, and they are looking at purchasing a universal license.

    Update 11 May: The Emergency Assistance fund is now closed, we're investigating how laptop loans will be administered.  

    Update 27 March: Students can apply to access the Emergency Assistance Fund to cover the costs of purchasing wi-fi dongles to support their online learning in Term Three. If you need access to a laptop to undertake online learning or assessment, you can also apply to the Emergency Assistance Fund to cover the cost of purchase.

    If you are having technical issues, including VPN issues, please contact ISD on itservices@ucl.ac.uk  / +442076795000 / ISD Website


    Teaching and assessment is moving online where possible, however, many students don’t have access to the appropriate technology (laptop, decent internet connection) or have returned to a country where some learning resources are not accessible or are blocked. We are seeking urgent clarification on how UCL will support students in this situation.