Advice for parents and carers

The coronavirus (COVID-19) situation continues to evolve rapidly. We're monitoring the situation on a daily basis and following the advice provided by Public Health England and the UK Government.

We continue to provide regular updates to our students.

We understand that this a difficult and challenging time, but we want you to know that we're taking all necessary steps to support our students as much as we can and for as long as needed.

Returning to campus

We know that you and your family have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and that many of you have questions and concerns. We want to reassure you that the wellbeing of our students is at the heart of everything we do, and we’ll continue to follow guidance from Public Health England (PHE).

We've worked hard to create Covid-secure campuses and return to face-to-face tuition, supported by online technologies, from September 2020.

As you’d expect, we planned our return to campus in close consultation with the Students' Union. We explored solutions for courses that are practice-based and/or have significant placements. We also consulted Professional Statutory Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs) about our proposals.

Attending university in January

Following the introduction of a national lockdown in England, the Government has asked universities to restrict the number of students returning to campus for face to face teaching in January.

In January, students in the following subject areas can start to return to campus (exact start dates will vary depending on the course):

  • medicine
  • subjects allied to medicine and health care
  • education (initial teacher training)
  • social work
  • potentially a very small number of courses with specific Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies (PSRBs) requirements.

The Government has asked universities to pause the return of all other students. We will therefore be teaching all other courses online only until mid-February. You'll find full details on our information page for students.

We will continue to follow guidance from the Government and local public health authorities, and update our University community as their advice changes.

Asymptomatic testing

We're strongly encouraging our students to take two asymptomatic COVID-19 lateral flow tests before they re-start face to face teaching. We will provide this service from our testing centres in Cambridge and Chelmsford.

If students travel to university, we'd expect them to either:

  • travel back for a lateral flow test on the same day as their first face to face teaching session or
  • use their local community testing programme where possible before commuting to minimise the risk to themselves and others on their first journey.

Students won't have to be tested twice before attending face to face teaching. They should have been tested once in the community before leaving home to return to university, or once at ARU. They can attend Covid-secure teaching sessions between tests.

You'll find full details on our information page for students.

Choice and flexibility

Our main objective is to ensure all students can progress their education and realise their ambitions.

When permitted, students can continue to attend university, including those who travel to campus. We'll continue to teach and carry out research in a COVID-secure way.

Our student support services are still available, and students can continue to live in University accommodation.

However, we know that our students have all been affected in different ways by the pandemic, and the circumstances they find themselves in will vary from person to person. We understand that coming onto campus might not be possible for everyone. Therefore, if a student wishes to do so, or their circumstances do not allow them to join us on campus, they will be able to complete the whole of Trimester 2 (January–May 2021) online, before returning to study on campus.

We're committed to provide an outstanding educational experience and excellent support for all our students, regardless of how they study.

We know how important it's to be part of a learning community with other students and staff. We're committed to providing a supportive and inclusive culture so that our students can be successful in all they wish to do.

Ongoing support for our students

Our students are our absolute priority, and we will do everything we can to support them.

Students can contact the following teams for support, and follow our Student News blog for up-to-the-minute information.

  • Our library buildings have now re-opened with social distancing measures in place. Students can also access a wealth of online resources. There's more information on the ARU Library website.
  • Canvas is available as usual and can be accessed from anywhere in the world.
  • Study Skills Plus are running email and video conference appointments; visit the Study Skills Plus web page to book.
  • Our Disability and Dyslexia Support team has appointments available; email to book.
  • As always, our students health and wellbeing is paramount. Students can contact their Faculty or Counselling and Wellbeing team and use the information shared on our Health and Wellbeing pages.
  • iCentres have re-opened on campus.
  • The Employability Service is offering virtual drop-ins via Skype or phone. Email to book.
  • Our International Student Advice Service is offering visa advice by email or phone; contact the team at

We have increased our hardship fund provision in response to the coronavirus situation, to include a new laptop bursary, hardship grants and provision of emergency loans. Students can contact our Money Advice team on or visit My.Anglia for more information.

We've also introduced a COVID-19 Response Education Policy.