Coping with difficult circumstances

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Doing a degree is not always easy, especially when events you weren't expecting interrupt or affect your studying. To a certain extent, we would expect you to have anticipated any issues which are likely to arise and have discussed them with course staff at the start of your course. However, when unexpected issues arise it's important that you talk to someone as soon as possible.

If you can, talk to your tutor, course leader or Student Support Officer in your Faculty. If you don't feel ready for this, talk the issues through in a confidential interview with a Student Adviser who can help you negotiate the best way forward.

Additional support is available if you are a care leaver, carer, mature student or estranged from family.

Health issues 

You are advised to inform your Faculty Helpdesk of any medical conditions or changes in your health which could affect your ability to undertake your course or complete a placement. There are certain conditions which will allow you to complete your course with help from Disabled Student Support.

Extenuating circumstances

Extenuating circumstances are medical or personal issues that you cannot overcome or manage without an impact on your ability to attend teaching and take assessment because they occur suddenly, unexpectedly and are severe in nature. You must let us know as soon as possible if you think your studies are being affected by extenuating circumstances. You can do this by contacting a member of Faculty Student Services, for example your Student Support Officer. The sooner you let us know, the more options there will be to support you. These options will become limited, or may not be available at all, if you wait until after an assessment period or until the end of an academic year before disclosing extenuating circumstances. Your Student Support Officer will guide through how to submit a Request to Repeat an Assessment Attempt due to your extenuating circumstances.

University staff will try very hard to support you though your course if they are aware that there are problems. If you feel this will not work for you, you could explore taking a break in study or leaving university temporarily to return the following year.

Information about taking a break in study is available in the University's Extenuating Circumstances Policy and Procedure but it is strongly recommended that you seek advice from your Faculty Helpdesk before completing a break in study form.

International students

The process is slightly different for Tier 4 students. You may be required to complete an Authorised Absence form.

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