Student iCentres

We want you to reach your full potential while studying at ARU. Our student support iCentres are run by skilled, approachable and friendly professionals who are always on hand to help you succeed.

ARU Awards

In 2018, we were named as one of the top 250 universities in Europe – while at the same winning an award for the quality of our learning facilities.

See all of our awards on our website

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Help me decide

We've tried to answer some of the common concerns people have when coming to ARU. Have a look through questions we often get asked about starting university:
  • Accommodation

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    “I have loved living on campus as it has been a great way to socialise and make friends, while being so close to uni and the town centre.”



    I’m not sure I can afford student accommodation.

    Our cheapest on-campus accommodation is £131.53 per week, which covers utilities, furniture and internet. If you feel like you may not be able to afford our accommodation, then make sure you get in touch. Our Residential Service will be able to talk you through the best living options for you and our Finance Team will be able to help you work out a budgeting plan.

    Eligible students joining ARU in September 2019 will be guaranteed accommodation in Chelmsford. Simply accept your offer to study, reserve your room and pay a deposit by 30 June 2019.


    What if i don’t like my accommodation?

    If you feel that something isn’t quite right with your accommodation then you should get in touch with our Residential Service right away. There may be something we can amend or rectify to make you feel more settled, but if you feel like you would be happier somewhere else then we are always willing to talk you through the other accommodation offers we have available.


    If i’m living at home or renting privately will i still have the same university experience?

    Living at home or renting private accommodation doesn’t mean that you can’t still immerse yourself in student life.

    Renting will give you the chance to be a part of the local community and will give you a real sense of what it is like to live independently. You can search on our official property website StudentPad to make sure that you find private accommodation that gives you a good balance between independence and university living.

    Living at home is a great opportunity to keep costs down, especially if you live  a convenient distance from campus. You will still meet like-minded students on your course, in societies and at events.


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  • Commuting

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    “For me, commuting to university made sense.

    The benefits were that it saved me a lot of money, gave me more time to study (get stuck into those textbooks on the train!), and it can really work for students on placement – I was lucky enough to secure a placement at my local hospital.

    Your social life needn’t suffer either. Yes, a lot of events tend to happen in the evening as do some society meetings. But be assured, there will always be a later train or a spare bed at hand!”



    I’m going to live at home and commute to university. Will I feel left out of student life?

    At ARU we do our absolute best to make sure all of our students feel involved and integrated with student life. The ARU Students’ Union runs an extensive range of events, societies and volunteering opportunities for you to get involved with, whether you live on or off campus. We are dedicated to creating an inclusive environment for our students, so find something that suits you and jump into student life feet first.

    ARU Students’ Union runs an extensive range of events, societies and volunteering opportunities for you to get involved with, whether you live on or off campus. We are dedicated to creating an inclusive environment for our students, so find something that suits you and jump into student life feet first.


    I’m going to be commuting to campus by car. Will I be able to park?

    At ARU we’re committed to doing all we can to reduce the environmental impact of travelling to our campuses and we always promote public transport where possible.

    We do not have general parking for staff, students or visitors on campus, but we do have spaces for daily use by Blue Badge holders. However, we do have a limited amount of parking for car sharers who are using our car sharing scheme through Liftshare.

    If you’re planning to travel by car then Chelmsford has two park and ride services (Sandon and Chelmer Valley) that stop at our campus.


    I’m going to be using public transport to get to campus, but I’m worried about the cost.

    At ARU we know travel costs can be a real worry for our commuting students, which is why we offer a range of discounted rail and bus tickets to suit your journey. You will have access to these discounts once you have received your student identification card. Don’t forget, signing up for external discounts as well will also help to keep the cost down such as the 16-25 railcard and the 26-30 railcard.

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  • Finance

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    "Having a part-time job is a nice way to earn some extra cash – and to get work experience before you graduate. You’ll also have a chance to meet a lot of new people. ARU makes it easy by having an Employment Bureau right on campus.”



    I’m worried about the cost of university and graduating with debt.

    The cost of university is one of the most common concerns amongst applicants. At ARU we have a range of grant and scholarship programmes that can help you get the financial support you need to complete your studies.

    If you’re taking out a student loan with Student Finance England, you won’t have to repay anything until the April after you graduate. Even then you’ll only pay 9% of any earnings over £25,000 a year. After 30 years any outstanding loan will be wiped regardless. It’s a system designed to ensure that you contribute to the repayment in line with what you earn after university.


    I’ve never had to budget my own money before.

    Being able to effectively budget your money is an invaluable skill that you’re likely to learn whilst you’re studying, so don’t worry if you aren’t sure how to do it yet. At ARU we have a fantastic Money Advice Service who offer specialist, impartial and confidential advice to help you with budgeting and money management. You can drop into the iCentre in Lord Ashcroft Building. You can even visit the team before you start at university.


    I might have to get a part-time job while I study, but I haven’t worked before.

    At ARU we understand that a large number of our students need to work part-time during their studies in order to cover their living costs. That’s why we have an on-campus recruitment agency called the Employment Bureau, which can help to find you paid part-time work opportunities that fit around your studies. Our job vacancies board features a wide variety of internal and external roles that could complement your studies or just earn you a bit of cash.


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  • Fitting In

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    Fitting In

    “Starting at university is one of the most exciting times of your life. There’s so much going on, and so many new people to meet. Where do you start? I would recommend the Freshers’ Fair; joining a society if you want to meet new people; making contact with your university ‘Buddy’; and volunteering – I met some amazing friends through being a Course Rep. Make the most of everything that comes your way and you’ll love it as much as I have!”



    Am I going to fit in and make friends at ARU?

    At ARU you will be surrounded by hundreds of new students from around the world who are likely to be just as nervous as you are! The good news is there are loads of opportunities for you settle in and get to know each other. When you’re doing what you love you’re guaranteed to find fellow students who share your passion. That may be joining a sport team, becoming a course rep, enjoying a society or organising on and off campus events. No matter what you do, you’re sure to make some friends for life at ARU.


    I’m finding the thought of arriving at university without knowing anybody really intimidating.

    That’s understandable. Arriving at university on your first day can be a bit daunting. Luckily, we have a whole host of events and societies available to help you settle into university life. However, if you want to talk and meet with other students before you arrive then offer holders can join our Facebook group. You can ask ARU questions via the group, start conversations with other students and get advice and tips on starting university.


    What if I get homesick?

    Most students struggle with homesickness at one point or another during their time at university. It’s totally normal to feel this way, especially as moving away and living independently is such a big change for many students. Our recommended remedy for homesickness is to really get stuck into university life and make the most of all the opportunities available to you at ARU. If you find you are still struggling with homesickness then you can always talk to a friendly professional from our Counselling and Wellbeing service.


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  • Health and Wellbeing

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    Health and Wellbeing

    “University has been one of the most challenging, yet rewarding experiences I have ever faced. It’s reassuring to know that at ARU, there are lots of places students can go for support. My course has a message group in which we all support each other with any questions we have about our university work. It also means we are all friends.”



    Am I smart enough to go to university?

    Achieving a good degree isn’t necessarily about how smart you think you are, but more about how much effort you are willing to put in to succeed. At ARU, we believe that if you are studying a subject that you are passionate about and you’re prepared to work hard while you’re here, then you will achieve fantastic results.

    If you struggle with certain academic skills and you’re worried this might hold you back, our friendly and supportive experts at Study Skills Plus will be able to help you throughout your degree.


    What if I decide that the course isn’t right for me?

    Sometimes even the best-laid plans can go awry. When you arrive your course just might not feel right. It happens! We have over 200 undergraduate courses across three campuses available, so you’re sure to find something else that will suit your future goals and aspirations. There is a course transfer process, so you’ll just need to let your Course Leader know in the first few weeks if you feel like you’ve made the wrong choice.


    I’ve struggled with my mental and emotional wellbeing in the past, will ARU be able to offer support?

    We understand that studying can become difficult if you aren’t in the right frame of mind, mentally or emotionally. That’s why we offer all of our students a free and fully confidential Counselling and Wellbeing Service. We have a range of professionals on hand who will be able to help you. We offer a drop in service 11.00am – 12.00 noon each day in Cambridge where you can be seen by a counsellor or a mental health adviser.


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  • Study

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    “The Study Skills team organise support sessions on subjects such as presentations and essay writing. I have seen a huge improvement in my assignments since going to the groups.”



    How do I know this is the right course for me?

    When you’re applying for university it can be really hard to know which is the right course to choose. Attending open days and applicant days can be a huge help, as you get the opportunity to speak to current and students and lecturers. These are the people who can give you the best insight into the course and it’s contents.

    However, if you’ve been unable to attend an event at ARU Chelmsford yet, then you can still arrange to visit us or speak to one of the fantastic course lecturers. If you don’t think you will have a chance to visit, make sure you carefully read through our course information, student testimonials and take note of the different modules you will be studying throughout your degree.


    I’m not sure what I want to do after university.

    That’s ok! You don’t need to decide yet, but while you’re studying with us we would love to help you try and work out what you want to do next. That’s why we offer a wide range of services to help support you and prepare you for tomorrow’s workplace.


    Our Employability Programme is very popular with our students, as it works with you throughout your time at ARU. As you explore your interests we can help you secure work experience, placements, volunteering opportunities and we even offer support for your start-up ideas.


    I’m worried about whether my study skills are up to scratch for university.

    If you’re concerned that a specific study skill might cause you to fall behind on your course, then our Study Skills Plus programme can help. Offering support with academic skills, IT skills, information skills, maths and stats skills the Study Skills Plus team are available to enhance your chances of success while you’re at ARU.


    I'm ready to confirm my place:

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Talk to someone


Facebook Blue IconWant to talk to your fellow students? Then make sure you join our Facebook group for students starting in September 2019. You'll be able to talk to other applicants and maybe even your future housemates. 


Contact us

We are always happy to talk you through anything you are concerned about.

Black Callout Icon  Talk to us on live chat,
 Monday to Thursday 8:30am - 4:00pm

 Friday 8:30am - 3:30pm

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Black Phone IconGive us a call on 01245 686868,
Monday to Thursday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Friday 8:30am - 4:00pm


When you are here

ARU Students' Union

Our fantastic Student's Union will be there for you from Freshers' Week to graduation. Have a say on the future of ARU and see the exciting changes happening during your degree. The SU organises popular events, provides volunteering opportunities and is home to all of our student societies. 

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