Learning and studying – your academic experience

Term will start for students on 21 September, and you'll benefit from our high-quality learning experience both online and on-campus. Weekly tutorial groups will help support your transition to university life, and you'll be able to access online resources as well as find quiet spaces to study across campus.

What will it be like in September?

Our academics joined us from their homes to answer our students' questions on what learning will be like for them in September. Find out more on our plans for teaching, our resources and how we'll conduct your lectures, seminars and  tutorials. If you're a student in the College of Medical and Dental Sciences, you can view our other interviews discussing labs and practical work, specifically for these programmes.

How will you be studying?
What will be the main differences?


What resources will be available?
What activities will be on offer?
What if you struggle with online learning?
What contact will you have with academics?
How is teaching being adapted for online?
What about work experience on programmes?
How can you meet other students?
Advice for our students starting in September


Your learning experience

Your course will begin in September, and will be delivered in a number of different ways

Your lectures will be delivered online to ensure that you can access them whatever the circumstances. This means that we have extra space on campus for the hands-on experience in labs and workshops. Seminars and tutorials in small groups will be delivered in person and on campus where possible, and online where required. This means that you get time on campus whilst still getting access to all the course materials you need.

We are adept at delivering online learning and our academics and other staff are working to ensure that you get the best possible start: understanding your subject and how it will be taught; meeting your tutors and fellow students and understanding how to access all the support that is available to you.

All of the core content will also be delivered online so you won’t miss anything if you can’t make it to campus for the start of term or need to self-isolate for any period of time. Flexibility is key, and when and where it is safe to do so, we will offer in-person teaching and learning activities on campus.

Where your course includes compulsory lab work, and practical sessions and workshops, these will be scheduled as late as possible in the first semester and in groups of an appropriate size.

During term time, tutor groups will meet online so wherever you are, every week, you will be able to join up with your tutorial group

Your tutor group will be an opportunity to develop a small learning community within your subject area, with your tutor, and a great way to learn from each other and access any support you might need.

Our study spaces, including the main Library, will be open from the start of term with access to PC clusters

Our Library will be open to provide you with space to study in an airy, safe environment, while observing social distancing. As well as bookable computers across campus, we have plenty of outdoor spaces with Wi-Fi. Our high-speed Wi-Fi is available in all study spaces and university and partner accommodation.

We have enhanced our extensive online collection of resources, books and journals that you can access through the Library from anywhere in the world, and we have increased the range of software that is available online, including free access to Office365.

Our high quality student support services are available for all students

Our Wellbeing Officers are equipped to work remotely and continue to offer excellent support to students. We continue to adapt and innovate our services including the introduction of further online counselling provision from September 2020, and we will support students online and on campus in every way that we can.

Make the transition to University study

The way that you study for your degree is probably going to be quite different to how you've studied before. Our academics and support teams have put together a collection of materials to support your transition to University and get you ready to start your degree at Birmingham.

Explore our academic transition materials

I have applied for a course with a year abroad for September 2020 – how will Covid-19 affect my year abroad?

We will work all relevant partners, including our study abroad partnership universities around the world, to continually assess the situation. Your Year Abroad typically takes place in the third year of your degree (starting in September 2022 for those who start university in September 2020).

Aerial campus tour of the University of Birmingham