Coronavirus (COVID-19) information

Date: 3 April 2020

Please see below a list of frequently asked questions that are updated on a regular basis.

University closure 

All of London Met’s teaching has now moved online and, although our buildings are currently closed, the University remains very much open. In addition to teaching, all student support and professional service departments are working remotely.

Throughout this closure, all staff – including hourly paid staff, student ambassadors, casual staff, temp staff, and staff working for our contractors – will continue to be paid.

We know that many members of our community will be concerned at this time, and we are committed to providing our students and staff with the support they need. The University has been planning for a number of contingencies since news of the coronavirus first emerged and we are confident we can continue to provide a high-quality learning experience for our students using the digital technology we have available.

Events and open days

In light of our plans to move to online teaching, we have also taken the difficult decision to suspend our events and open days. We see this as a practical move to safeguard visitors and all of our current students and staff.  

In the meantime, we are planning a special series of virtual events to replace our open days. Details of these new events will be sent out shortly, along with a link to sign up. Please also keep an eye on our events pages for more information. 

Supporting the wider community

Find out what we're doing to support the wider community during this difficult time.

Date: 17 March 2020

Following the recent developments with the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), we have taken the decision to imminently move all teaching and assessment online, and to ask all staff who can to work from home. We will close all University buildings at 5pm on Friday 20 March. 

We currently have a number of staff and students self-isolating as a precaution. The health and wellbeing of our students, staff and the wider community is our top priority and we recognise the important part we can play in limiting the spread of the virus by practising social distancing, and in our case, by closing our buildings. 

Date: 16 March 2020

University closure

Following the recent developments with the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), we have taken the decision to close all University buildings at 5pm on Friday 20 March. All teaching will be delivered online from Monday 23 March. 

We are not aware of any London Met students or staff who have contracted the virus, but we recognise we have an important part to play in limiting the spread of the coronavirus. 

The University has been planning for a number of contingencies since news of the coronavirus first emerged and we are confident we can continue to provide a high-quality learning experience for our students using the digital technology we have available.

We know that many members of our community will be concerned at this time, but we are committed to providing our students and staff with the support they need. The health and wellbeing of our students and staff is our number one priority. We will continue to follow the advice from Public Health England and update everyone in our community as the situation develops.

COVID-19 is a new illness, caused by a virus called coronavirus, that can affect your lungs and airways. To help protect your own health and to help minimise the spread of the virus, please follow the latest guidance on the Gov.uk website.

I want to start a course at the University this September – what will happen now that my exams aren’t going ahead?

As you may know, the government has announced the cancellation of school exams and assessments, which includes GCSEs, A levels and other equivalent qualifications. We understand that many of you wanting to study an undergraduate degree at London Met may be concerned about what impact this will have on your ability to start your course in the autumn.

The government has announced it will work with teachers to ensure that those due to study for exams such as GCSEs and A levels will still be able to receive a grade in order to allow them to progress to the next stage of their studies.

Here at London Met, we will follow the government's guidance and assess each application to study with us in accordance with these guidelines and our own standard admissions procedures.

If you're still yet to apply to us, please continue to apply as normal and be reassured that we’re working hard to make sure that everyone who wants to study with us this September is able to do so. We are doing everything in our power to make this process as seamless for you as possible.

Will the admissions and enquiries office still be reachable?

Our enquiries and admissions teams are still contactable online. Feel free to send them a message and someone will get back to you.

Do you have a virtual tour so that I can see your facilities online?

Yes – you can take a tour both of our campuses online.

What virtual events can I attend?

We have virtual events scheduled for anyone interested in studying an undergraduate or postgraduate course with us who wants to speak to lecturers, students or support staff – view our upcoming undergraduate open days and postgraduate open days for full details.

I need to attend a portfolio interview as part of my application – how will portfolio interviews work now that the University’s buildings are closed?

All portfolios for our art, architecture and design courses can now be submitted digitally. You may also be asked to join a remote interview.

What if I don’t have a digital portfolio?

If you don't have a digital portfolio, don't worry, it’s ok to photograph your hard copy and upload that instead.

How will the coronavirus outbreak affect my application for student funding?

You can and should still apply for your student funding as normal, but please bear in mind it may take a little longer than usual for Student Finance Services to process the application. For Student Loans Company guidance and answers to common questions related to the COVID-19 outbreak, please see the government's guidance for prospective students.

What’s the current status of London Met’s buildings?

London Met's buildings are currently closed and all of our teaching is being delivered online.

How long will the closure last?

It's difficult to say how long these measures will be in place as the spread of coronavirus is unpredictable – we will do everything we can to keep you informed of what's going on and to support your studies. There will be no face-to-face teaching until September induction to allow our students to plan accordingly.

Access to the Campus during the closure period

If you find that you need access to the University during the closed period for an urgent and essential reason please contact ask@londonmet.ac.uk with your name, date, time and reason for the request, plus the names of any staff or students requiring access. 

Please note, you should only request access if it is absolutely essential.

If access is granted you must call the control room (020 7133 2079) on arrival and give your expected departure time and areas of access. Our security may escort you if appropriate. Do not request access if you are feeling unwell or have had contact with someone who is unwell, and please observe proper handwashing advice.
  

What if I can't complete my placement hours?

Where we can, we will offer you alternative ways of meeting this requirement but you no longer need to complete your placement hours. The professional bodies have confirmed that we can make decisions about students’ success on placements on the basis of what they have completed so far. As at 23 March, we know that some of you are in the first couple of weeks of your placements. In this case, your course team will provide alternative learning activities and you will be able to do your placements hours in the autumn. For placements that are not related to professional body requirements (for example where students have opted to do a work-based learning module), please follow the guidance from your module leader. 

How do I know my grades will be fair?

All students were sent an email on 23 March outlining the process to ensure that your grades are not adversely affected: we will be comparing the performance of the previous years' students to the performance of your cohort and your individual performance to date to ensure that you have a fair grade. If you don’t think your grades reflect your effort to date then you can resit your assessments to enhance your marks. Your marks will not be capped if you do this and this applies to all assessments that are submitted from Monday 23 March.

Will there be an extension to assessment deadlines?

In response to your feedback we are extending all original assessment deadlines by one week for any piece of assessment where the deadline is beyond Monday 23 March; the extension could not be longer than one week otherwise dissertation submission dates would fall into the examination period or clash with another assessment period. This arrangement ensures that students will graduate or progress on their courses at the appropriate time. No mitigation application will need to be submitted to allow you this extension; the mitigation process will only be required if you cannot meet the extended deadline.

How will my studies be affected?

All of your classes will go ahead using online tools from Monday 23 March. You will receive invitations to join a virtual learning environment, such as Collaborate, from your tutors in order to join individual sessions. Your timetable will not change. You will continue to have access to thousands of electronic journals and e-books. In addition, tutors will direct you to alternative reading where appropriate.

The same level of support will be available to you but this will now be online. You will continue to have access to everyone in the University who supports your academic and pastoral development.

I am a student at The Cass who uses workshops. How will I continue my work?

The Cass workshops will be open as normal until Friday 20 March at 5pm.

Course leaders and studio tutors will continue to work with students on their studio and workshop projects remotely. Tutorial sessions will follow the existing scheduled delivery pattern.

Where equipment, materials or processes are restricted or unavailable, alternative means to achieve the learning outcomes for the module will be developed to enable students to complete the module.

We are also aware that there are some software licences that have restricted accessibility outside of the University. We are working to identify those that can be accessed or are free to download

How will my assessments work?

For any assessments that were due to take place in class, such as tests, presentations, group work assessments, the mode of these assessments will be changed so that they can also be submitted online. Your module leaders will confirm the details of these assessments as soon as possible for all the assessments that currently do not have an online submission. 

We are making arrangements for alternative assessments, where appropriate. Your course or module leaders will communicate with you about arrangements. (Alternative assessments are being used where students might find the original assessment difficult to complete in the circumstances.) We are working with professional bodies to make sure that the criteria they set is met.

What should I do if I don’t receive a response from my lecturer?

We are working through teething problems, which should be resolved by 27 March, so please bear with us. If you have not received a response from your lecturer, please email the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, and copy in the Head of Communications, who will investigate.

When will the issues for Law students be resolved with the professional bodies?

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) will relax its rules to allow Legal Practice Course (LPC) exams to be taken online and you can read more about this update on their website.

As with other universities, we are still working with the professional bodies to resolve specific issues and are expecting responses by 26 March. We will make sure there are Law-specific communications emailed to Law students by 27 March. 

 

What do I do if I’m feeling unwell?

If you are unwell please refer to the latest advice from Public Health England. If you do need to self-isolate or are ill, please notify your module leader to let them know about your condition.

What are you doing for students suffering with anxiety and stress?

Your mental health should be your first priority and we want you to reach out to us: to your course leader; the Student Liaison Team; the Students’ Union (SU) sabbatical officers, via social media (@londonmetsu) and the SU Casework Adviser; and look out for the student newsletter, On Campus, in your inbox.

How can I contact the libraries or my Academic Liaison Librarian?

You can contact the libraries or your Academic Liaison Librarian through the following email addresses:

Can I take out more books than my normal allowance?

Normal loan allowances apply during this closed period. You can use as many e-books as you wish.

Will you be open at weekends?

We will not be open after Friday 20 March until further notice but will be operating an online library chat and virtual enquiry service during the week and between 1pm and 5pm on weekends. Please email library@londonmet.ac.uk with any queries.

Can I return my books when the University buildings are closed?

No. Please keep your books until the University libraries re-open. Your books will be automatically renewed to Monday 1 June.

Will I be given a fine if my book is overdue?

We have automatic renewals but if your item is reserved, you will not have to return it whilst the University is closed and you will not be charged.

Can I talk to my subject librarian?

Please email alls@londonmet.ac.uk and they will contact you with a suitable time for either an online or telephone appointment.

What online resources are available for my work, and how do I access them?

You can search across some online resources through Encore. You can also find a list of online databases where you can search for journal articles, reports and other materials specific to your subject by finding your subject on the A-Z subject guide list. You just need your University username and password to log on to these resources.

Our e-books are searchable via the catalogue, and Cambridge Core has over 45,000 titles that are particularly suited to third-year dissertations, master's-level projects and above. Each of your module reading lists will be available from a link within the module area of Weblearn or you can search for them by name from the reading lists system.

If you cannot log on to online resources, please email library@londonmet.ac.uk 
If you need help using e-resources, please email alls@londonmet.ac.uk 

Where can I get help with finding things for my assignments and doing my research?

Library Matters on Weblearn contains a lot of guidance on finding resources and how to search effectively, as well as guidance on referencing, and lecture recordings and materials from previous referencing workshops. If you have not accessed Library Matters previously then you will be prompted to enrol on your first visit. You can also contact your Academic Liaison Librarian on alls@londonmet.ac.uk

Can I still get inter-library loans?

Please email library@londonmet.ac.uk with any queries – we may still be able to get electronic inter-library loans.

SCONUL Access Scheme (to other university libraries)

London Metropolitan University is a member of the SCONUL Access scheme. This enables London Met students and staff to use other university libraries for reference. Staff, postgraduate and part-time undergraduate students may also be able to obtain borrowing rights, although this will vary between individual libraries.

Students should check with their destination library before travelling as other universities may close libraries to visitors.

What happens if there are no online versions of library books needed for our modules?

Students will not be disadvantaged in any way if a library book is not available online. Course leaders have agreed that where a text is not available online a switch can be made to other online resources and information about that will be shared with you.

 

Where can I find general information?

This Student Zone page has some comprehensive information for you to access whilst the buildings are closed.

Will I get the third instalment of my Student Loan?

The government have announced that the Student Loan Company (SLC) will pay the third instalment of loans regardless of building closures. 

How can I contact my student hub?

The Student Liaison Team are now available via chat (Monday - Friday, 9am - 5pm)  via the student zone page and this direct link. Hub staff will also be available to answer your questions on email.

 

What are the arrangements for supporting students with disabilities?

 

All support is continuing for students who access the Disability and Dyslexia Service (DDS); the team is offering the service remotely. Please be aware that there will be a special Q&A session on 22 April with the DDS.

 

What careers support will be available to me?

The careers service will continue to hold appointments on the phone and answer questions via email – please email careers@londonmet.ac.uk to make an appointment with the team. The team will also be creating some online workshops which you will be able to sign up to online. The careers portal will be running as usual.

I need counselling support or already have appointments with the University counselling service – what do I do?

The counselling service is moving online – please book your counselling appointment via the Student Zone. If you have an existing appointment, this will also move to an online service. Your counsellor will be in touch with more information about how to do this.

How will my attendance be monitored?

Attendance monitoring will be carried out through Weblearn and will be monitored weekly. We will be monitoring your engagement with the materials and activities but we recognise that engagement may be challenging at times and particularly over the last two weeks in March. We are on hand to support you with this. We will check in with you if we see that you are not engaging, so do respond to contact, but know you won’t be penalised in any way. 

Will there be full or partial refunds of tuition fees for lost time in labs and teaching?

No, as the University is not closed – only the buildings are closed - all teaching and support is continuing and in some cases it will improve, for instance, we’ve now we’ve moved to a more flexible service. We are confident you’re receiving all the teaching you need during this time. We’re bearing with you and we ask you to bear with us while we get the technology you need as a student.

What financial help is available from the University?

The University has a Hardship Fund, that offers grants and loans, as more students than ever are struggling. We are streamlining the system to make it more straightforward and will communicate the process to students There is extra Government help available for students, also. 

I don’t have access to a laptop/the internet at home – what should I do?

Please inform your course leader as soon as possible of any issues you may have around IT access – this could be to do with Wi-Fi/computing facilities/smartphone etc. Please provide your student ID number and the nature of the issue and contact details.

IT help and support for students

During the University building closure, online IT services are still available as per normal. 

For IT help and support, please use the IT Self Service Portal or the IT Help Chat, which is at the bottom of that page.

A list of software is also available which will help you in studying remotely and using online tools. 

We are unable to host Techsmart drop-in sessions while the University buildings are closed, however, any specialist software used for your course should be working as normal. If you have problems, please log a job with the IT Self Service Portal

For service updates, you can also follow the IT team on social media.

Supervision

Now that the buildings have closed, all supervision will continue online. Your supervisors will liaise directly with you to make arrangements.

Vivas

Vivas that have been scheduled to take place within the next few weeks will be conducted online. If you would rather wait for your viva to be rescheduled so that you can be present, please let your supervisor know as soon as possible. If this has any consequences for registration periods, the necessary adjustments will be made.

PGR training sessions

In-person PGR training has now been suspended until further notice. However, where possible, we plan to provide sessions online, either via slides on Weblearn or through Blackboard Collaborate. We will update you on this closer to the time.

Submission deadlines

RD2 and RD2T submissions have been extended to 8 June. Research Student Progress Groups (RSPGs) scheduled for the summer will be taking place as planned for now, whether on campus or online, and you should continue to work towards these. You should indicate on the forms if anything has affected your application; the University would be sympathetic towards reasons connected with the Coronavirus situation.

Soft-bound submissions will be accepted online in pdf format during this period and you should continue preparing your hardbound thesis as planned. Once you have done this, please let us know and we will advise on the best way to deliver it based on the situation at the time.

Student and Staff Research Conference

We are unclear whether the conference will take place in July: it's possible that it will be postponed or held remotely, we can’t be specific. We would urge all students to submit your abstracts now ie by 9 April.

Drop-in sessions

Instead of face-to-face drop-in sessions with the research degree coordinator, please email us at research@londonmet.ac.uk and we will deal with your enquiry as quickly as possible.

Please continue to monitor your London Met emails and Weblearn as we will keep you updated when new information becomes available.

If you have any questions or concerns, please liaise in advance with your supervisors and/or the Research and Postgraduate Office at research@londonmet.ac.uk so that we can ensure swift resolution and minimal disruption.

​What should I do if I am prevented from carrying out my research?

Professional Doctorate students should talk to your course leader about face-to-face interviews as you might be able to move this aspect online. If social observation is involved you would have to postpone, but do discuss with your supervisor the possibility of tweaking your research. If there are any difficulties around postponing data collection, conducting interviews and focus groups, PhD students should clearly reflect that, stating the specific difficulties encountered and then possibly apply to intermit your studies. Students who have a valid reason can intermit their studies, during which period no fees would be due. 

What will be the impact of not being able to attend conferences and will my transfer request from MPhil to PhD be affected by this?

Under the ‘attendance at conferences’ section on the RD2 form, explain the social distancing measures preventing you from attending conferences and this will not be held against you. The transfer process from MPhil to PhD will not be put at risk as interviews can be held remotely.

Will my transfer to PhD be affected because I have no access to the labs?

You should explain on the RD2 form that you cannot currently undertake practical work but still apply for transfer. You should be prepared to hear that we’ll put your transfer back for half a year with no negative consequences. During that period, read further literature, look at methodology, do the reading. Once you can do your experiments, you’ll be much better prepared and have a higher level of knowledge. You should also talk to your supervisor to see if anything can be reorganised in your PhD programme so you don’t lose too much time.

What Dyslexia support is in place?

Please visit the Student Zone, where you will find all the support available to students while the buildings are closed. You’ll find contact details for the Disabilities and Dyslexia Service there.

Can the Coronavirus be cited as a hindrance to research?

Yes, and you can apply for an extension; this would be considered sympathetically so long as you write in a well-organised manner and indicate how the situation might have reflected on your research findings, stating exactly why Coronavirus caused the delay. You can also set out the specific problems you encountered and the lengths you took to resolve these issues when wrapping up your thesis, especially if you’re undertaking qualitative research.

Will the master’s summer lab-based project in June take place?

We can’t be definitive at this point in time; it depends on whether or not the buildings can be open.

Can applications for extensions be made for a full year?

Although applications for extensions can only be made for 3 or 6 months, you can put in repeated applications for extraordinary extensions. This is a new process and we’ll look favourably on the application if you have a good reason for why you’ve lost time and a good case for the extension. Extensions do have fees attached to them.

Will students be reimbursed for lab fees?

Students should (a) talk to their supervisor to see whether there is any prospect of doing the lab work in the near future; (b) if not, apply for an intermission stating from when they were prevented from doing the lab work (including whether previous lab work was spoiled because of the lock down). The intermission will have the same effect as a reimbursement, unless students want to leave the course. 

If the Coronavirus crisis continues into the autumn what is the process for taking a 12-month sabbatical?

The University would call that an intermission and we make decisions on a case-by-case basis. Be explicit about why you’re applying. (Do consider, first, whether you might be able to rearrange your research.)

Is an intermission period of 3, 6 or 12 months available for international students?

This would need to be clarified with our Visa Compliance Team; please email them direct.

Can reasonable adjustments be made for transferring students registered with the Disabilities and Dyslexia Service?

If a dyslexia declaration were made on the RD2 form, this would be taken into account and viewed sympathetically.

During the current crisis, are weekly meetings with supervisors for Tier 4 students acceptable?

Yes.

Keep in touch

We have created an online form asking a few questions about whether you will be able to engage in online study and what your plans are regarding travel. Please complete this form as soon as possible and, don’t worry, we'll only use the answers you've provided to ensure we give you advice tailored to your circumstances.

Attendance

Tier 4 students are expected to attend their lessons regularly. As teaching moves online, students are still expected to engage with their courses and "attend" virtual lessons/seminars and submit coursework. Students will be monitored for engagement with online teaching on a weekly basis so please make sure you log in and take part in your classes and/or submit coursework. 

If you are taking part in a work placement that has been cancelled or changed, please ensure you inform your placement officer and email visa.compliance@londonmet.ac.uk

International student support

While the University is closed, the international support team will continue to offer you support, guidance and advice remotely. As usual, we will respond to your emails and if you need to speak to an adviser, we will be able to offer you online or telephone appointments. 

Travel  

You may be feeling vulnerable at this time and you may wish to return home. We completely understand this and will offer you advice as to how remote teaching or a break in studies work with your visa. The form above asks if you will be able to continue to engage in online teaching from your home country. 

If you can study remotely, this is absolutely fine and we will monitor your engagement weekly as normal. Continue to follow your course and module leaders' instructions as normal. We will contact you if we are informed that you are not engaging in online study.

If you cannot study from home and need to take a break, the below applies:

  • Before you leave the UK, please ensure you contact the International Student Advice Service by emailing adviceinternational@londonmet.ac.uk to let us know that this is something you want to do. We will request further information from you and seek approval from your course leader before authorising your absence. You can also complete our online form to provide information. 
  • If you have already left the UK, please contact the International Student Advice Service immediately by emailing adviceinternational@londonmet.ac.uk and respond to any information requests as quickly as possible. You can also complete our online form to provide information. 

If you are staying in the UK and want to go on holiday or take a short break when you do not have online classes, you must check the most up-to-date travel advice available on the Gov.UK website. Please ensure you keep up to date with travel information and government advice to ensure you keep yourself and others safe. 

The situation around COVID-19, government advice and travel information is changing regularly. If the above information changes, we will update you accordingly.

Will the University cover the extra cost incurred for international students who have to extend their visas as they can neither work nor fly home?

 

If your visa is due to expire soon, you will have received an email from our International Support and Compliance team reminding you of this. Please get in touch with the team and they will provide you with advice according to your specific circumstances. UKVI have announced initial flexibility on visa expiry and our team can discuss this with you.

 

While in the UK on a valid Tier 4 visa, your work permissions haven't changed. You will still be able to work 20 hours per week during term time and full time during holidays, such as the upcoming Easter break. Other visa holders may have different permissions. 

 

We appreciate that it may be difficult to find work at the moment and we would encourage you to reach out to our International Student Adviser if you need further advice.

 

Contacts

International Student Advice Service: adviceinternational@londonmet.ac.uk
Visa Compliance: visa.compliance@londonmet.ac.uk

Will there be graduation ceremonies this July?

We have taken the decision to postpone our graduation ceremonies in July. This action will not stop you from completing and being awarded your degree. We will explore how we can celebrate the achievements of graduates once things return to more like normal.

Will my progression to the next level of study be affected?

When it comes to progression to the next level of study, please be assured this will happen as usual. The processes we are putting in place mean that we can be more flexible with reassessments and enable students to progress or complete more quickly.

You can access previous recordings of Q&A sessions, and details of upcoming sessions in this section.

Upcoming sessions - details will be emailed to students

Join Blackboard Collaborate at 11.55am

12pm-12.45 General Q&A for all students
12.45 to 1.15 - third year students
 
12pm to 12.45 General Q&A for all students
12.45pm to 1.15pm - international students
 
12pm-12.45 General Q&A for all students
12.45-1.15 - Disability and Dyslexia Service

Recordings of previous sessions

Recording of the session held at 10am on Friday 3 April 2020 (for students of Guildhall School of Business and Law [GSBL])

Recording of the session held at 12.45pm on Wednesday 1 April 2020 (for students of The Cass).

Recording of the session held at 2.45pm on Wednesday 25 March 2020 (for Postgraduate and Research students).

Recording of the session held at 2pm on Wednesday 25 March 2020. (Please note the recording starts at 19 minutes into the session due to technical difficulties.)

Recording of the session held at 3pm on Friday 20 March 2020 (for all students).