Important information for starting Masters study in January 2021
We are delighted that you are currently holding an offer to study one of our Masters courses that start in January 2021. The UK has now entered a new national lockdown due to a rise in coronavirus cases so please read the important information below.
You may be aware that the UK is experiencing a rise in coronavirus cases and that the UK Prime Minister has announced a new national lockdown. We wanted to provide you with an update on what this means for the start of your course at University of Sussex this January.
The new lockdown restrictions
To control the spread of Covid-19 and reduce pressure on the national health services, everyone in the UK must follow the national lockdown restrictions. You can find out more information about the new lockdown restrictions here. These restrictions are very clear, everyone must stay at home wherever possible, unless to shop for food or other essential items, for medical needs, or to exercise.
Change your travel plans if you can
At this moment, teaching for your course will need to be delivered online. This will now need to be at least until the middle of February. We will give you as much advance notice as possible about any extension to this. Until then you should start your course remotely and should not arrive on campus. Please note the following:
- All students should not travel to campus and instead begin their studies online at home.
- The advice for EU and international students travelling from overseas is that you should consider delaying travel plans only if travel plans can be rearranged without undue costs.
- If you are unable to move your flight, you will be asked to complete a passenger locator form before you arrive in the UK. You will then need to self-isolate in your accommodation for 10 days.
- It has been announced that you will need to provide a negative Covid-19 test result before you travel to the UK. Find out more here.
- The University of Sussex will support all students arriving at Sussex who need to self-isolate with the University’s self-isolation support package. On arrival to the UK, you will need to go to your accommodation to immediately self-isolate. View our webpages which provide information on how we support our students in isolation.
- If you are planning to live in university-managed accommodation, you will not be charged for your accommodation until you arrive.
- Check out our Frequently Asked Questions for more guidance.
Start online in January
Our teaching staff are strongly committed to ensuring that you receive the highest quality online experience possible. In order to start your course online please do the following:
- Please check your email for our registration information and complete all the tasks for Online Registration
- Once you have registered, look up your Get Settled timetable for January Welcome Week: log into Sussex Direct, select your study timetable and view the activities for January Welcome Week, beginning Monday 18 January. There'll be talks and activities happening each day, to help you get settled at Sussex.
Get in contact
We are working closely with the Government on the new guidance and we will continue to be in touch. If you would like to talk to us to discuss arrival, online learning, Welcome Week and your study, please email email@example.com and we can answer your questions.
- When do I need to arrive?
The UK Prime Minister has announced a new national lockdown, meaning that teaching for your course will need to be delivered online at least until the middle of February. Only students undertaking training and study at Sussex for degrees in Medicine, Teaching and Social Work will return to face-to-face learning as planned.
The advice for EU and international students travelling from overseas is that you should consider delaying travel plans only if travel plans can be rearranged without undue costs. If you are able to move your flight, please ensure that you register an impediment to travel during online registration. If you are unable to move your flight, you will be asked to complete a passenger locator form before you arrive in the UK.
We will aim to give you as much advance notice as possible about any extension to the lockdown.
Please read our Travel to Sussex advice before you take your flight.
- When should I make the visa application?
- I have booked the flight to arrive before the middle of February, will I be turned away at the border?
If you cannot change your travel plans, please don’t worry - you will not be turned away at the border. However, you should always check for the latest UK government travel advice before you travel.
Please email the Housing Office on firstname.lastname@example.org to let them know your time of arrival in advance and your accommodation at the university will be ready (you will need to check with your estate agent/landlord if you are staying in private accommodation). Additionally, you will be asked to complete a passenger locator form before you arrive in the UK. You will then need to self-isolate in your accommodation for 10 days.
Please read our Travel to Sussex advice before you take your flight.
- Do I need to take a Covid-19 test before my departure?
Yes. From 4am on Monday 18 January 2021, you must have proof of a negative coronavirus test to travel to England. If you fail to provide it, you may not be able to board and could be fined £500 on arrival to England. We cannot offer advice on testing so you must read the UK Government guidance before you depart.
- How do I register as a student with Sussex?
Look out for our registration email and complete all the tasks for Online Registration. If you have any queries about registration please contact email@example.com.
- How will I start my course online?
Students studying remotely will be able to access Canvas, our virtual learning environment, where you will find details of the learning and teaching of your course.
Monitor your Canvas site for details about your learning activities. You will find essential readings or preparatory tasks as well as details of scheduled contact – whether it's face-to-face or online. Where online synchronous contact is planned your Sussex Direct timetable will show the location as 'Online' and advise you to check Canvas for details.
See our guidance about assistive technology for students, such as support for learners with literacy difficulties.
- Do I have to pay for my university-managed accommodation if I arrive late due to Coronavirus restrictions?
No, you will pay from the day you arrive.
- What self-isolation supports are available if I arrive before the middle of February? What facilities will remain open on campus before the middle of February?
Yes, the University of Sussex will support all students arriving at Sussex who need to self-isolate with the University’s self-isolation support package. View our self-isolation webpages which provide information on how we support our students in isolation.
The following facilities will remain open:
- Student Life Centre / Student Support Unit (virtual)
- Student Union advice service (virtual)
- Security Team
- Falmer Bar open for takeaway
- Co-op Supermarket
- What will Welcome Week be like under the new UK Government Coronavirus restrictions?
Once students have registered, they would need to look up their Get Settled timetable for January Welcome Week. Please log into Sussex Direct, select your study timetable and view the activities for January Welcome Week, beginning Monday 18 January. There will be talks and activities happening each day, to help you get settled at Sussex.
Students will have a set timetable to follow, but all sessions will be recorded and uploaded to Canvas, where they can access anything they can't see live, or want to re-watch. There'll also be content such as videos, some student-led, where they can access important/useful information.
Through the Get Ready programme, all content will be on a Canvas module, on demand: videos and recordings of webinars students can watch in their own time. (The module will be live next week).
- If I start online, will I still be eligible for the Graduate Visa Route? When will be the latest arrival date to ensure their eligibility for Graduate Route?
Students will normally be expected to undertake their studies in the UK to be eligible for the Graduate route. However, if students are required to either continue their current studies or commence a new course by distance or blended learning due to Covid-19, they will still be eligible to switch into the Graduate route on a concessionary basis if they spent some time studying outside the UK.
Students who are completing their course in summer 2021, including those who commenced a one-year Masters programme in September 2020, will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK on or before 6 April 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.
Students who commence a one-year Masters programme in January 2021 will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK before 27 September 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.
Students who are studying courses lasting longer than a year in length, which are not due to be completed in 2021, and who have studied all or part of the 2020/21 academic year via distance learning will not have any period of distance learning during the 2020/21 academic year held against them in relation to the Graduate route.
- Can I defer my place to September 2021 and get a refund for the CAS deposit?
Yes, students can defer their offer to September 2021. The University has created new courses for January 2021 that are similar to our most popular and innovative courses that start in September. Make sure you understand the differences between courses before deferring to September 2021. If you wish to defer, get in touch with Admissions by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Paying your tuition fee deposit
Find out how to pay, terms and conditions and exemptions for the tuition fee deposit. More on paying your tuition fee deposit.