Discover our support for students

University life can be both an exciting and challenging time so it’s important to us that you feel supported and safe here. There are things you can do to look after yourself (such as registering with a UK doctor/GP) but we’re also here to help you during your time at UoB.

Support in your School

Your Personal Academic Tutor

You will have a Personal Academic Tutor, who will support your personal and academic development. You will meet regularly with your Personal Academic Tutor and your tutor peer group through the year, giving you the chance to get to know a small group of students. You will find out more about your Personal Academic Tutor from your School during Welcome.

Meet your Wellbeing Officer

Each School has dedicated Wellbeing Officers who are able to provide practical and emotional support if you are experiencing personal problems, especially where these begin to interfere with your academic work. They can also recommend sources of professional help and, if appropriate, will guide you through the extenuating circumstances process.

Find your Wellbeing Officer

Support for your disability

Telling us about any disabilities you have enables us to give you appropriate advice and support. At the University, a disability may be a long-term health condition, physical or sensory impairment, a mental health difficulty, autism, and specific learning disabilities, such as dyslexia, dyspraxia and dyscalculia.

Welcome to Student Disability Service

We strongly encourage students to tell us about a disability as early as possible, even if you feel you don't need any support yet. Registering your disability with us early means we can support you more quickly if you do need it in the future.

Tell us about a disability

We have also pulled together some useful information for new disabled students.

Build your community

Feeling part of a community is an incredibly important part of settling in and feeling happy and supported. Welcome is a great time to meet other new students. It's completely normal to feel nervous about meeting lots of new people and making new friends can feel daunting, but remember that everyone else is feeling the same way too. And don't panic about having to meet your new best friend during the first week - you will keep meeting people throughout your time here.

There are lots of ways to find like-minded people, whether it's on your programme, in accommodation or on your commute, through clubs and societies, or even volunteering and part-time jobs.

Student communities

Explore our LGBTQ+, disabled, commuter, mature, and first generation student communities

Stay healthy and safe

Mental health and wellbeing support

If you’re going through a tough time, talking to someone can help. Whether it’s your studies or life in general, we’re here to support you. From our trained and friendly Wellbeing Officers to our 24/7 support line UBHeard, we offer a range of free and confidential services for all students.

Our Time to Talk resource helps you find the right people to talk to, or you can explore our full range of wellbeing support through World of Wellbeing.

Students in recovery from addiction

We have our own recovery programme for people in recovery from alcohol, drug or behavioural addictions. The programme provides a range of activities and support meetings to help you maintain your recovery while you study with us, providing peer-to-peer support, 'dry' social events, and weekly meetings for students wishing to maintain abstinence-based recovery.

Better Than Well is coordinated by academic staff from the Institute for Mental Health, but run by students supporting their peers to maximise educational and social opportunities whilst continuing a personal programme of recovery from addiction.

Find out about Better Than Well

Register with a doctor

Registering with a local GP (General Practitioner - doctor) practice will make sure you are able to access healthcare when you need to. A GP can provide support for your mental and physical health, and they are usually the first health service you should contact when you are experiencing a problem.

You should register with a GP near to where you spend most of your time, which is likely to be your term-time address. Local GP practices are used to supporting students. Don't wait until you feel unwell, register with a doctor as soon as possible. Find out more about registering in Birmingham.


We encourage you to check which vaccinations you are eligible for to help protect you against illness.

Covid-19 vaccinations

Everyone aged 18 and over is now able to book their Covid vaccine. It is strongly encouraged that you get your vaccinations to protect yourself and others on campus. You can book an appointment through the NHS website.

Information for international students

You do not need a Covid vaccination to enter the UK, but you are strongly encouraged to get them if they are available to you. You will also be able to get a vaccination once you have arrived in the UK.

All international students aged 18 or over in the UK are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination for free, regardless of your nationality or immigration status. This includes international students studying in the UK for less than six months.

If you register with a doctor (GP – General Practitioner) when you arrive In the UK, they will contact you about getting a Covid vaccination. If you do not register with a GP, you can book a COVID-19 vaccination as an unregistered patient through a local doctor's surgery.

Other vaccinations


New students are considered to be particularly at risk of meningitis and septicaemia (also called sepsis or blood poisoning). Make sure you know the signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia.

You are strongly encouraged to speak to your doctor about having the Men ACWY vaccine a few weeks before the start of term, or as soon as possible. International students and those not offered the vaccine by their GP (general doctor) should request it when registering with a GP, which you should do as soon as you arrive at University.

Find out about the Men ACWY vaccine


MMR is a safe and effective combined vaccine that protects against three separate illnesses – measles, mumps and rubella (German measles) – in a single injection. These are highly infectious diseases which can have serious complications. The full course of MMR vaccination requires two doses.

Find out about the MMR vaccine


The NHS are providing the flu vaccine (influenza) to more people this year, including those living with someone who is at high risk from coronavirus. If you are eligible, we encourage you to take it.

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

Many young adults will have received the HPV vaccine at school. The HPV vaccine is given in two doses, six months apart. It protects against types of HPV which have been linked to risks of different types of cancers, and genital warts.

If you didn't receive it at school, you may be eligible if:

  • You are female and were born after 1 September 1991
  • You are male and you were born after 1 September 2006
  • You are a man who is gay, bisexual, or have sex with other men (MSM) and are aged 45 or under

Trans women (people who were assigned male at birth) are eligible in the same way as MSM if their risk of getting HPV is similar to the risk of MSM who are eligible for the HPV vaccine. Trans men (people who were assigned female at birth) are eligible if they have sex with other men and are aged 45 or under.

Find out about the HPV vaccine


A smallpox vaccination is being offered to people who are most at risk to help protect them against monkeypox. This includes:

  • Some healthcare workers
  • Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men at highest risk of exposure
  • Peoplewho have already had close contact with a patient with confirmed monkeypox

Some sexual health services will be contacting those men that are likely to be at highest risk, others may offer the vaccine alongside other appointments. It may also be offered by relevant employers for healthcare workers. You can visit to find your local clinic or call 111 for advice. It is free to eligible groups. Find out more from the UK government.

Monkeypox: what you need to know

The NHS describe monkeypox as 'a rare infection', and say that there has recently been an increase in cases in the UK, but that the risk of catching it is low.

Monkeypox can be spread through close physical contact, like kissing, skin-to-skin, sex, or sharing things like bedding and towels.

  • If you or any recent partners have developed unexpected or unusual spots, ulcers, or blisters on any part of your body, including your face or genitals, call your local sexual health service, or NHS 111, as soon as possible. You will be treated sensitively and confidentially.
  • Avoid close physical contact with others until you have had medical advice. This will minimise the chance of passing it on.

Find out more on NHS.UK

Other useful things to do

We have a few more tips to help you get ready for studying at university, especially if you are moving away from home:

  1. Gather information about any illnesses or conditions you have. This might include having copies of any diagnoses or letters to share with a new GP/doctor or health service. If you are an international student, you might want to have these translated into English. UK students should make a note of their NHS number, if known.
  2. If you take any medicines, you should bring copies of prescriptions or details of these medicines. Make sure you have enough medicine to last until you are able to register with a GP and access a local pharmacy.

  3. Similarly, if you wear glasses or contact lenses, you might find it helpful to have a copy of your most recent prescription/eye test in case you need replacements. If you get your contact lenses delivered by post, remember to update your address or make arrangements to collect them!

Help with health costs

As a student, you may be eligible to apply for support with health costs under the NHS Low Income Scheme. This could help you pay for:

  • NHS prescription charges
  • NHS dental treatment charges
  • the cost of sight tests, glasses and contact lenses
  • the cost of travelling to receive NHS treatment
  • NHS wigs and fabric supports (check with your hospital for their arrangements for supplying NHS wigs)

To apply, you will need to complete a HC1 Form, or you may be able to apply online. You may also need to provide evidence such as payslips or information about your student loan.

Find out more

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