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Essential coronavirus info
We can’t wait to welcome our new and returning students from 19 October 2020. Your safety is our first priority.

A message to prospective students from the Vice-Chancellor

Written by Student Communication
Published date 05 August 2020

We are very much looking forward to welcoming students to UAL in October.

As the UK gradually begins to exit the lockdown phase of the coronavirus pandemic, we are preparing the University for the start of term and for the arrival of students. An enormous amount of work has been involved in designing the delivery of courses and the study environment in time for students joining us in October. The requirement for the autumn term is that all students will attend on site to take full advantage of the exciting learning opportunities for their course and the incredible creative excitement that London has to offer. Social distancing measures will still be in place in the UK in October and our priority will always be to keep students safe. From the week beginning 19 October all students will be able to enjoy on-site facilities as well as online learning.

We have developed a very clear framework for how we will operate our buildings safely so we can protect the health and safety of staff, students and visitors. This is a top priority for our entire community and we all need to take personal responsibility to keep ourselves and others safe. Students will be given a health and safety briefing at the start of term which will reflect the latest guidance from the UK government, including on the wearing of face-coverings. Signage will be in place around the university to direct students around the building safely and highlight social distancing measures. There will be screens in receptions and other key areas and hand sanitisation stations around the buildings. An enhanced cleaning regime will be in place plus additional measures in workshops, studios, teaching rooms and libraries.

We are aware travel restrictions are still in place for some regions and countries and that visa applications are sometimes taking longer. We are also aware of the effect of the pandemic on families which may also impact on travel plans. Some disabled students or some of those with medical conditions or caring responsibilities may also be unable to be on site for the start of term. Disabled students should contact our Disability Service for further guidance and support. Additionally, there are quarantine requirements when arriving into the UK from some destinations. Students who find themselves unable to attend on campus in the UK at the beginning of term should still enrol on time using our remote system and we will explain the process for seeking authorisation. This will enable affected students to begin studies at the same time as other students and allow them to take part in online elements of their course. For students who initially need to begin their studies remotely, we will provide support and take this into account in assessment.

We will be in touch again soon with information on how to enrol for courses. Students will also get regular updates about the Big Welcome, an exciting programme which offers great opportunities to get involved before arrival and once studies begin.

You might also like to know that for the first time in history, you can explore the work of all of UAL's graduates in one curated space on the UAL Graduate Showcase website. This is an opportunity to be inspired by our graduates - the newest names in art, design, fashion, communication, media and performing arts.

Please regularly check our Coronavirus guidance for prospective students to keep up-to-date with UAL’s response to the pandemic.

With best wishes

Nigel Carrington

Vice-Chancellor UAL

Services for students

We’ve listed the information alphabetically, so if you want to, you can skip to the parts you’re most interested in.

Academic Support

We will soon introduce you to UAL’s academic resources, including digital learning tools - all designed to help you get the most out of studying online. You will get access to Academic Support Online (ASO), our searchable online knowledge base, which also contains a booking system for in-person support sessions. We will also introduce you to other multimedia resources and online orientation sessions as part of our Big Welcome programme. In the meantime, take a look at UAL’s Student Voices to find out more about UAL students’ academic and social lives.

Arts Students’ Union

Arts SU is the Students’ Union. Run by elected students, as well as a full-time staff team, the Union works for students. It’s our job to represent students and provide activities to ensure students get the most out of their UAL experience. Find out more by visiting the Arts SU website.

Campus facilities and catering

UAL prides itself on the variety and quality of its facilities, from state-of-the-art design suites to traditional print studios. All UAL students can access the libraries, Learning Zones, cafes, shops and galleries at any of UAL’s sites. Find out more about our facilities at each College – including shared spaces, studios and workshops. All facilities will be operating within social distancing guidelines from 19 October.

Careers and Employability

Careers and Employability's range of services supports UAL students and graduates with their freelance work, artistic practice, business or career. Take a look at ArtsTemps, our in-house temping service, and Creative Opportunities, our free industry jobs board. We also run a practical events programme including CV checks, strategies for job hunting, skills for interviews, developing your portfolio - and many more.

Disability Service

Our Disability Service offers advice at any stage of the application process. Read our Disability and dyslexia: applying for a course and joining UAL guidance for details.

Our Disability Service supports students who have:

  • Dyslexia or another Specific Learning Difference
  • A sensory impairment
  • A physical impairment
  • A long-term health or mental health condition
  • Autism
  • Another long-term condition which has an impact on your day-to-day life

Disabled students should contact the Disability Service to discuss adjustments and support for studies at UAL as soon as possible. Start by completing our Applicant Support Questionnaire.

Halls of residence

Our Accommodation Services team is really looking forward to welcoming many of our students into halls in October. We will soon be sharing our video ‘Keeping you safe in halls’, which will detail all our plans for the new term. If you’ll be staying in halls, visit Halls Life and make sure to check your emails for our updates in the lead up to your arrival.

If you are still looking for somewhere to live, we can help you find room in halls, or provide advice on private accommodation. Call us on +44 (0)207514 6240, email or Tweet us at @UAL_Halls.

Language Centre

Our Language Centre helps UAL students who speak English as an additional language develop the language skills needed for studies.

Once you join us, you’ll be able to access tutorials and online resources tailored with an art and design focus on language development.

In the meantime, take a look at our pre-arrival guide which has lots of useful information including some common words and phrases you’ll hear when you’re studying with us and living in the UK.


From 19 October, UAL’s libraries will be open to all students in line with our updated health and safety procedures. Please check our Library Services pages for the most up-to-date information on how your College library is operating, including library opening times. You can also find out about the click and collect service and booking a library study space. We also offer a range of online resources which support all areas of study, including digital learning, TV and radio broadcasts, and copyright and referencing tools.

Student Services

Our full range of student services is available and reflects the blended teaching and learning in place during 2020/21. Visit our help and support pages to see the many ways we can support students with academic life, mental and physical health, safety and with practical advice on everything from money management to visas.

Advice and support will be provided by online video conference and telephone. Face-to-face support will be arranged in consultation with students when required. This also includes advice on access arrangements for disabled students related to the use of studios, workshops and libraries.

If you are looking for information and advice on living in our halls of residence or in a privately-rented property, our Accommodation Services can help.

Once you’re a student, you can also get help and support from the Arts Students’ Union (Arts SU) Advice Service.