We are updating our plans, in line with the government guidelines, any changes and updates will appear on this webpage.

Latest Update, 6th January 2021:

Coming back after the Christmas break for Semester 2

Universities are being asked to delay the start of face-to-face teaching to help to stop the spread of Covid-19 as students return to university. We appreciate that the latest government guidelines create new challenges for many of you, as fully online teaching is now in place until at least mid-February. There are some exceptions to this, and for Newman this includes students on Initial Teacher Education Courses, for 5 sessions, 4 of which are outside sports sessions.

Regular updates will be sent via the Student Bulletin.

When on campus we must all continue to adhere to the guidelines, and social distancing rules. We are working in an environment of rapid change where national, regional and sector requirements result in changes, which often need to be made quickly.  This will require understanding and cooperation from everyone at Newman and respect of the diversity of our community as we work together to keep each other, our family and friends safe and healthy.

As we continue to receive government updates, we will communicate these to you, if there are any changes to timetables or access to the campus . Communication updates will be delivered via the staff and student bulletins

You are bound to have a lot of questions, especially about how Coronavirus will affect your student experience, and what we are doing to ensure that you get the most out of your studies. We want you to start to feel part of the Newman community, and for new students to settle into your new course, get to know your lecturers, meet new friends, gain confidence in your subject and be ready to succeed.

A high-quality learning experience with on-campus activities and face-to-face online sessions:

Lectures and larger sessions will be delivered online, and we will offer teaching and learning activities on campus, such as seminars, workshops and practicals where it is safe to do so following UK government guidelines.

Your learning will be fully supported with timetabled activities to bring an important level of structure to your week. The online resources and materials will allow you to work at your own pace, wherever suits you. It will also bring opportunity for Q&A sessions and other interactions across different formats in timetabled slots.

Quality teaching:

We are committed to improving and extending your online learning materials and are supporting our excellent teaching staff to make these as engaging online as it would be on-campus. Through the University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) you will be able to access all key module materials and we will provide information and training so that you can study flexibly in a way that suits you best.

Your Questions answered:

Latest Government Information and Restrictions:

Students can visit gov.uk for more information about the local restriction tier system that will be in place from Wednesday 2 December, including what you can and cannot do in each tier.

Information regarding support bubbles and interacting with other households can be found on the rules and restrictions page of the government website.

Your Studies in Semester 2

Semester 2 arrangements will in general be like those for Semester 1. Specific changes will be communicated by tutors and via Moodle as soon as possible.

Universities are being asked to delay the start of face-to-face teaching to help to stop the spread of Covid-19 as students return to university. Therefore teaching will be fully online until at least mid-February.

There are some exceptions to this, and for Newman this includes students on Initial Teacher Education Courses, for 5 sessions, 4 of which are outside sports sessions.

All exams are scheduled as online for January.  Some assessments such as presentations or performances may be required on campus/in-person, but the Assignment Brief will specify what is required.  Most coursework is submitted online, usually through Moodle. The best advice is to check the Assignment Brief and contact the programme team if there are any queries.

Any applicants or current students who, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, wish to undertake their studies wholly online, will need to complete this online study form. Once this form has been submitted, you will be contacted with the outcome and the next steps.

Support for students studying on campus

  • changing entry and exit points of buildings to manage the flow of people accessing buildings
  • marking 2m intervals in heavily used thoroughfares
  • ensuring desks are spaced 2m apart
  • restricting the number of people on campus at any one time
  • Visible social distancing guidelines – signage and electronic screens
  • Perspex screening/ shielding barriers have been installed across the campus
  • One way systems around the campus
  • Socially distanced social spaces
  • Hand sanitising stations
  • Socially distanced layouts of teaching rooms, and safe maximum capacities displayed

We have increased the frequency of cleaning key areas. High footfall and social areas show social distancing space, seating has been rearranged, and Perspex screens and shielding barriers have been installed across the campus. More images can be found on our transition back to campus page.

The University will ensure that shared spaces are cleaned thoroughly and regularly throughout the day. Hand sanitiser and cleaning wipes will be available, should students wish to clean any surfaces themselves prior to using them. These spaces will form part of the building risk assessment and the social distancing arrangements that are implemented before buildings reopen. Extra cleaning facilities and wipes will be available in all food areas. Wayfinding and one way systems allow the flow of people around the building, and all toilet facilities have been adapted to meet government guidelines.

Good personal hygiene is essential for you to look after your own health and that of fellow students and staff. Hand sanitising gel is available, and frequent handwashing is recommended.

There is a variety of (PPE) personal protective equipment used to control the transmission of infectious diseases. This ranges from sophisticated full-face respirators to simple disposable fluid repellent medical masks to a simple medical face mask covers the nose, mouth and chin. They prevent droplets from reaching these parts of the wearer’s face and reduce the spread of infectious droplets from the person wearing it. All types of medical face masks are designed to meet quality standards, however there are currently no UK product standards for face coverings.

A face covering is something which safely covers the nose and mouth. You can buy reusable or single-use face coverings. You may also use a scarf, bandana, religious garment or hand-made cloth covering but these must securely fit round the side of the face. Face coverings are not classified as PPE (personal protective equipment)

We want everyone to feel safe on campus, and to understand that a huge amount of work has been undertaken to protect students and staff. The new position is that we require members of the Newman community and visitors to campus to wear a face covering in all environments in and around campus – this now includes teaching environments. Read our face coverings position statement in full.

Face coverings do not need to be worn when eating or drinking (provided in all cases that 2m social distancing is consistently maintained). In addition, they do not need to worn by staff working in settings with protective screens in place such as reception areas, or in student accommodation where students are living in defined household groups. Or when communicating with someone who uses lip reading (when 2m social distancing should still be maintained). Wearing face coverings all day can be uncomfortable therefore if you are alone in a room, or outside and with plenty of space from others, it is useful to take breaks from wearing your face covering.

  • wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser before putting a face covering on, and after removing it
  • when wearing a face covering, avoid touching your face or face covering, as you could contaminate them with germs from your hands
  • change your face covering if it becomes damp or if you’ve touched it
  • continue to wash your hands regularly
  • change and wash your face covering daily
  • if the material is washable, wash in line with manufacturer’s instructions. If it’s not washable, dispose of it carefully in your usual waste
  • practise social distancing wherever possible

We would ensure that people are informed about the prohibitive nature of face coverings. However, we are not able to force individuals to take off a face covering if they have made the personal choice to do this. Under such circumstances, we will put alternative methods in place (e.g. notetaking) so that no student is disadvantaged.

A close ‘contact’ is a person who has been close to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 anytime from 2 days before the person was symptomatic up to 10 days from onset of symptoms (this is when they’re infectious to others). This could be a person who:

  • spends significant time in the same household
  • is a sexual partner
  • has had face-to-face contact (within one metre), including:
    • being coughed on
    • having skin-to-skin physical contact, or
    • contact within one metre for one minute
  • has been within 2 metres of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes
  • has travelled in a small vehicle, or in a large vehicle or plane

Students should report to their faculties (email: fasps@newman.ac.uk or fed@newman.ac.uk) where all the relevant information will be captured by a Faculty Office staff member. The protocol for reporting cases is also available on the student intranet. Please take some time to read about what you should do if you need to report a case.

You can get a free NHS test to check if you have COVID-19 by applying on the UK government website or by calling 119. You can only get a free NHS test if at least one of the following applies:

  • you have a high temperature
  • you have a new, continuous cough
  • you’ve lost your sense of smell or taste or it’s changed
  • you’ve been asked to by a local council
  • you’re taking part in a government pilot project.
  • you can also get a test for someone you live with if they have symptoms.

Students should report to their faculties (email: fasps@newman.ac.uk or fed@newman.ac.uk) where all the relevant information will be captured by a Faculty Office staff member. You will be encouraged to follow NHS advice.

If someone you live with develops Covid-19 symptoms, or if you are advised to self-isolate by the NHS Track and Trace service, you will need to self-isolate for a period of 14 days as per government guidance.

Your Questions about Halls of Residence answered:

For those not committed to halls contracts but require accommodation whilst participating in campus activities or just for ease of travel, we have nightly up to weekly accommodation options available in Edgbaston and Maryvale Halls, for students who may only wish to stay in Halls during the week. This is dependent on current Government guidance.

Your safety will always be our main priority. We have put measures in place to meet the government’s social distancing guidelines as your health and wellbeing, and that of our staff is our highest priority.  As government guidelines change, we will act accordingly.

We have set out the following plans and procedures to ensure that social distancing measures are followed when you move to campus in September:

  • Students will live in a flat with six people / flatmates (household)
  • Students can socialise with flatmates within their flat plus one other flat, and  including communal areas and with one other household at a time.
  • All students will receive a start of year cleaning pack which includes facemasks, gloves and hand sanitiser.
  • Initial cleaning materials for a household’s kitchen.
  • social distancing guidelines must be followed with anyone who is not considered a flatmate
  • Additional cleaning of halls has been scheduled in all social spaces and kitchens from September delivered by our in-house housekeeping team.
  • Hall tutor teams will be available for all students in halls and they are first aid and mental health trained, as well as being up to date with Covid-19 best practices
  • There is 24-hour university security on-site and also 24-hour emergency maintenance if needed
  • Additional hand sanitiser stations are in Halls, and digital signage with Covid-safe messages, being regularly updated
  • Social spaces which adhere to the social distance guidelines will be created around campus to enable you to make friends with those outside your flat to allow you to be part of the Newman community

If you have any queries about studying at Newman, please e-mail heretohelp@newman.ac.uk. We are regularly updating the website to keep you up to date with our plans.

Keep safe and stay well.