Supporting the transition to Higher Education

Welcome for new students

Welcome gifts 2015There is a College-wide welcome event for all new students in Arts and Law which includes an address from the University’s Vice-Chancellor and the Head of College.

Each year, first years are given a welcome gift.  This year, we gave out College of Arts and Law branded note books, trolley coin key rings and post it packs.  In previous years, we have given mugs, water bottles and cloth bags.

Students 'Staying Local'

There is a College-wide ‘Staying Local’ welcome event which is organised for all new students in Arts and Law who live at home or off-campus in their first year. It is important to us that our local students have the opportunity to meet with other new and existing local students beginning of welcome week in a similar way to on-campus students when they meet with other students in their Halls - our local students have reported how much they appreciate the opportunity to ease into welcome week with this relaxed event.

Mature Students event


Aimed at students aged 25 or over, this is an opportunity for students to meet with others who have chosen to come to university slightly later in life than at 18 or 19. Including talks from the College of Arts and Law (CAL) staff, the Guild’s Postgraduate and Mature Student representative and a current mature student, along with a quiz and buffet, this event is the perfect opportunity to make friends, network and gain some reassurance.

Arts and Law stand in marquee during Welcome

This is a central point of contact during Welcome for all Arts and Law students where you can find out about events, services, schemes and initiatives and have your questions answered by our friendly Arts and Law ambassadors. With information about Welcome events, our Student Experience Officers, the CAL Writing Advisory Service, leaflets from societies, and information about places of interest on and off campus, this is not to be missed.

International Day 2015International Day

This is a University-wide event which celebrates the diversity of our community on campus.  In Arts & Law, we joined in by sharing our top ten things to do in Birmingham list, running an author-nationality match competition and by asking students to share where they were from by filling in a template, marking it on the world map and having their photo taken.

Student mentor and buddy schemes

Support for your learning at university doesn’t just come from your tutors, many of our enthusiastic current students act as mentors or buddies to new students. There are a number of schemes across the Schools/departments in the College:

You may be provided with a welcome buddy to provide a friendly face for your first few weeks at University (e.g. German Studies and Law)

Some modules offer Peer-Assisted Support Sessions, known simply as PASS, which are weekly study groups run by higher year students who have already successfully completed the module. This year, PASS study group were run by and for students in Archaeology, English, Drama and Theatre Arts, History and Theology.

If you choose to study a Language you may also be offered a Language buddy – an Erasmus or International exchange student who is a native speaker of the language you are studying and who you can help with English language practice.

Professional services Staff-Student mentoring scheme

We know that settling in to university life is not straightforward for everyone and some people may need a bit of extra support. This mentoring scheme brings together non-teaching members of staff from across the university with Arts and Law students for mentoring either on a 1:1 basis or in small groups. 

Our trained mentors will welcome students to their new community by helping them to settle in, by sharing a bit of local knowledge and by signposting them to appropriate services and support.  Find out more.