First of all we would like to take the opportunity to thank you for choosing York College for your studies, and extend a warm welcome. These pages are here to give you all the information you should need to make sure your start with us is as smooth and simple as possible. We apprentice that the first steps on any new journey can be both daunting and exciting in equal measures. We want to take this opportunity to say we share in your excitement and ease any nerves you have. We look forward to taking these first steps with you on your new path.
STUDY. ACHIEVE. SUCCEED.
Key check lists
Before you arrive
- Check your financial support eligibility if applying for extra financial support do this as early as possible. Check our webpage for more info or check on student finance web address/links?)
- If your fees are being paid by a sponsor an employer or company for example please ensure you have written conformation of this
- Organise your finances, create a budget, open a student bank account and make sure you have allocated enough for living costs. Advice and guidance can be found on our webpage? Money saving expert.com?
- If your going to be on a low income whilst studying a HC1 form can be collected from GP surgeries, Dental Practices and Post Offices. Complete the form and if eligible a HC2 exemption certificate will be offered
- Keep up to date by following us on social media
Bring these to Enrolment:
- Proof of identity: Birth Certificate, Passport, Driving licence, Marriage Certificate, Adoption or Deed Poll Certificate are accepted, but need to be in original form not photo copies. International students you must bring a Passport and Visa/entry clearance documentation and original proof of your entry qualifications to be checked
- If you have applied for student finance, you must bring your confirmation letter to enrolment. If you have not yet received your confirmation before your enrolment, you must bring the latest correspondence you have received.
- If you are paying your own fees, you will need to make at least one payment at enrolment. You can pay in full or pay an initial instalment of 25% of the full fee and complete a Fixed Term Loan Agreement to authorise payment of the remainder in three further instalments.
- If a sponsor has agreed to pay your fees, you must bring a letter or purchase order to confirm this (this must include the full billing address). Please hand this to the Finance Desk at enrolment.
- If you were required to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service check for your programme then you must bring the original certificate to enrolment
- If you intend to apply for a Parking Permit, please bring your completed Permit Application Form, your driving licence and payment (if required). The Application Form can be downloaded from Blackboard. (can this link)
- Proof of qualifications. We will need to take a copy of your qualifications, so please remember to bring these with you
Enrolment - Thursday 24th and Friday 25th August 2018
Start of Term- week commencing 17th September 2018
Individual timetable and days in College will be confirmed at your enrolment appointment. Timetables may be visible on Blackboard from mid-August, however please be aware that these are subject to minor changes until Saturday 16th September.
Freshers’ Fair - Monday 17th - Friday 21st September 2018
Our annual Freshers’ Fair in the College Atrium provides the opportunity visit a variety of stands and stalls to gather information, advice and guidance on many aspects of student life . (perhaps input info here when we have conformation of what’s going on) For one day during freshers’ week, York St John will be in the HE Hub to give information about their award-winning Students’ Union which you’ll have access to throughout your studies.
Start 5th September 2018
Half term 29th October – 2nd November
Finish 21st December
Start 7th January 2019
Half term 25th February – 1st March
Finish 11th April
Start 29th April 2019
Half term 27th – 31st May
Finish 5th July
Training Days – 12th November 2018 and 12th April 2019
General timetable information will be available from late August on Blackboard (link) but please note that these may be subject to minor changes. Further information on this will be given to you during enrolment.
Every student is issued with a multi-function card which is used for identity (the card incorporates a photograph), borrowing learning resources from the Library, printing and security access.
York College offers progress tutoring to ensure that every student can obtain guidance, support and advice on both academic and personal matters. This is particularly important for new students who may need information on general matters and someone to approach if experiencing an academic or personal problem. Once you are here, you will receive more information about Progress Tutoring from your division, and the Head of Studies who oversees the Progress Tutorial process.
Higher Education and Access Student Forum
The Forum is a student led group made up of representatives from every HE and Access course in the College. It is facilitated by the Head of Studies, who is the only member of staff who has the right to be present. It is chaired by the Lead Student Representative who is elected by the Forum. Three members attend the Student Association and sit on various Strategic Committees of the College and one of these three is one of the two Student Governors. The Forum is asked to comment on a range of academic issues across the year and the minutes are used by the College to identify issues that need further work. In 2016/17 the Forum contributed both to a review of assessment practice within College and to an examination of the learning support available for students.
Higher Education Graduation
Each year we celebrate the success of our higher education students at a graduation ceremony held in the heart of York, at the magnificent York Minster. After more than 20 years of development and expansion of higher education at York College we are always proud and amazed at what our students have achieved. Many have completed their studies alongside very demanding jobs, family pressures and health problems, in addition to everyday trials and tribulations. Graduation is always a fantastic occasion to see our students sharing their success with the family and friends who have supported them during their studies. It is certainly a memorable occasion for all involved and reflects everyone’s desire to celebrate the achievements of those completing their higher education studies at York College.
On completion of your Access to HE Diploma, we’ll host our annual end of year celebration to mark your achievements. The event promises to be a memorable and special day for you and your classmates.
Working Online at York College
There are a lot of different systems at the College that you will need to get used to. This is a summary of the most important things you will need to remember. More detailed information will be given to you during your induction. What accounts do I get as a student? As a student at York College, you will have received a username and password that will work for all College systems. This includes:
- The College network – including your own user area, known as the H: drive, where you can store your work
- Your College email account – your tutors will only ever use this account (but you can forward emails from here to your personal email, if you wish)
- An account for Blackboard (the College’s Virtual Learning Environment) where you can access your coursework online
- ProPortal, where you will access your Individual Learning Plan (ILP) and monitor your grades
IT Support Team
Your first port of call for IT-related problems is the Learning Centre where staff will be happy to help or direct you to the relevant person who can assist you. Or you can visit the friendly and helpful IT Support team in rooms 2F030 or 2F029a. For ProPortal issues, go to room 2F115 and ask to speak to the Reporting Services team. The Blackboard team are based in 2F030.
Computer Work Areas
You are welcome to use your own device at College but there are many desktop computers at College that you can use. These are available on all floors of the Learning Centre, in the hub areas (close to the lifts) and elsewhere on all floors. As a HE student, you have access to your own workroom in the Learning Centre on 3.
You will find colour and black and white multi-function printers (MFP) on all floors of the Learning Centre and in all hub areas. To use a MFP, you will need to first register your ID card with your account which you can do on any MFP. Swipe your ID card at the MFP and then print/copy/scan as required. Each copy costs 7p b/w and 12p colour and you will be given some credit to get you started at the beginning of the year. Once this has run out, you can top up by using the pay station on the first floor of the Learning Centre.
Microsoft Office - for free!
The College provides students with access to Microsoft Office for the PC and MAC free of charge for use on their own computers. Up to five copies can be installed at any one time and the subscription lasts as long as you remain a student at York College. For more information please see the flyer on the York College Information section of Blackboard.
Blackboard is a web-based service where your tutor will upload materials for your course. It has interactive features such as discussions, blogs, online tests and assignments; ask your tutor which functions they use on your course. Blackboard is here to enhance and support your studies online. You can access it at College or anywhere else with internet access.
Blackboard on Your Mobile
You can access Blackboard on your Android and Apple devices, thanks to a handy app. Go to your app store, search for “Blackboard” and install the app. When you open it for the first time, search for “York College UK”–there’s another York College in New York so make sure you get the right one! The app will show your courses with the latest uploads and announcements from your tutor. You can even submit your assignments using the app.
Your Course Within Blackboard
Each and every course represented in Blackboard will be a little bit different. Your tutor will know best how to supplement your face-to-face learning with online activity in Blackboard, but you can expect to find at least some of the following activity within your course:
- Course Information – including your course handbook and tutor contact details
- Learning Resources – material that will support your learning that you can access any time
- Assignments – most tutors use Blackboard to set and mark your assignments
Within Blackboard you will also be able to communicate and collaborate with your tutor and fellow Students. Log into Blackboard or you can go to the College Intranet.
Obtaining a username and password for your College accounts
When you completed your application form, you provided a personal email address. So long as this address is correct, after enrolment you will receive an email with a username and password for your IT accounts. This will be valid for the duration of your studies at York College. If you do not receive this email, go to the Learning Centre where you can scan your student ID card and get a printout with your login details.
Information, Advice and Support
InfoZone and Student Services
Whether you are a student, member of staff or visitor to the College you can access Student Services via the InfoZone which is situated behind Reception near the main entrance. We offer impartial information, advice and guidance on a full range of services including:
- Course Information and Enrolment
- Personal Support
- Substance Misuse
- Travel and Transport
- Welfare and Funding
Confidential appointments with specialist advisors are also available and can be arranged by telephone or in person at the InfoZone. Student Services offers advice in good faith on the basis of the information available to it. Clients of our service must take responsibility for their own decisions based on such advice.
Monday - Thursday: 8.15am - 5.00pm Friday 8.15am - 4.30pm
Our friendly staff are available in the HelpZone on the first floor to help and support all students in need with any query and providing information and access to internal and external services. You don’t need to book an appointment, just come along and ask for help.
We do not have any residence halls or other accommodation of our own, but there are plenty of options in York through the private sector. Some students choose to live in shared student houses, which are usually advertised through letting agencies, of which there are many in York. Websites such as Gumtree and spareroom.co.uk are also places where one can find individual rooms to let.
Adverts are often placed by students when one of their flatmates moves out. These houses are mainly concentrated in areas of the city close to the University of York and York St John University campuses, which are not particularly close to the York College campus. There are, however, good bus links into the city centre and then out toward College and good cycle paths.
There is also a number of purpose-built student accommodation developments in York. These have been built mainly with University of York and York St John students in mind, so they are located in or very close to the city centre, but they do have good access to bus routes and it is also possible to cycle to Collegefrom these areas. They are expensive, but they do have a lot of amenities.
Disability and Learning Support
The Learning Support team supports students with disabilities and learning differences. If you have disclosed a disability and/or learning difference on your UCAS form, or by other means, you can pop along to Learning Support during your first couple of weeks and set up support with one of our advisers. If, for whatever reason, you have not declared your disability and would like to inform us or find out about the support available, please get in touch.
Council Tax Exemption
Students studying on full-time courses are entitled to apply for exemption from council tax charges. If you live in York, you can apply online. If you live elsewhere, you can request a council tax exemption certificate from the InfoZone which you will then need to provide to your landlord or Local Authority. Part-time students are not entitled to Council Tax exemption. More information regarding this can be found in the welfare and funding pages in the Student Support section of our website.
Jobs, Volunteering and Work Experience
Part-time employment and voluntary work are both excellent ways to help you develop those all-important employability skills and enhance your CV. Local opportunities are advertised on the Intranet and we have links with the National Careers Service, who can help with identifying useful experience for your chosen careers. Many courses also have extensive links with local industry and can help you to find opportunities.
Students with Children and Other Dependents
Additional, income-assessed funding for childcare is available for full-time undergraduate and PGCE students through Student Finance. Childcare funding is available for students on Access courses through the college. Please contact the Funding Team if you would like any further information or help with applying.
Finance and Fees
Tuition fees go towards the cost of your course and allow the College to provide the resources, staff contact and support you need and deserve. Fees are for the academic year 2018/19 unless otherwise stated.
Student Maintenance Support
Full time undergraduate and PGCE students may be entitled to government support in the form of a maintenance loan, the maximum you are eligible for will be dependent on household income. There is no student maintenance support available through student finance for students on Access courses.
Please note: you will not receive your funds before the start of term, so you will need to have sufficient funds available to cover all your expenses during this time and until your maintenance support has cleared in your bank account.
Undergraduate Higher Education students
Depending on your previous qualifications and residency history, you may be eligible for a tuition fee loan to help with the fees for your full or part time higher education degree. If you choose to take out a tuition fee loan, you will not have to pay any upfront fees. Student Finance will pay the tuition fee on your behalf directly to the College. If you are a full time or part time student, you should have already applied for a tuition fee loan for the academic year 2018/19 via Student Finance:
- Student Finance England
- Student Finance Wales:
- Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS)
- Student Finance NI
Student Finance will send you a financial notification letter to confirm your funding. You may apply, if you wish, for a partial tuition fee loan and in this case, your financial notification letter will tell you how much you will need to pay to the College.
Depending on your residency history, you may be eligible for an Advanced Learner Loan to help with the fees for your Access course. If you choose to take out an Advanced Learner Loan, you will not have to pay any upfront fees. Student Finance will pay the tuition fee on your behalf directly to the College. Details of how to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan are included in your Learning and Funding Information letter and you can visit www.gov.uk/advanced-learner-loan for information about the loan and to apply. You may apply, if you wish, for an Advanced Learner Loan to cover part of your tuition fees, and in this case, you will need to arrange to pay the balance to the College.
Paying Tuition Fees
If you do not have a tuition fee loan or are ineligible for one, you will be required to pay your tuition fees in accordance with the payment terms of the College. Your fees can be paid by direct debit, cash, cheque or credit/ debit card and you can pay:
- In person at the Finance Desk (08.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday)
- By calling 01904 770495 to pay by credit or debit card (08.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday)
- By post; please make cheques payable to York College and send to us at the address on the back of this guide
Please write your name, telephone number, student reference and course name on the back of any cheques.
Can My Employer or Other Organisation Pay My Tuition Fees?
Yes. If your employer or other organisation agrees to pay all or part of your tuition fees, York College will invoice them for the appropriate amount. (Please note that parents, family and friends are excluded from this category. If they assist with your fees, you are classified as self-financing and must pay the fees accordingly).
What Happens if I Have Not Yet Received Confirmation About My Loan From Student Finance?
If you find yourself facing financial difficulty during your course, you may be able to apply to the College for additional support. Please contact the Funding Team if you would like more information.
Failure to Pay
Failure to pay your fees will delay your enrolment and could jeopardise your place on the course. Opting to pay in instalments commits you to paying for the full course even in the event of you being unable to continue your studies. If you are experiencing difficulties paying your fees you must contact the Finance Department straight away on 01904 770495 and they will make every effort to help you.
Whatever you do, if you have financial problems, do not bury your head in the sand! Face up to any problems as soon as possible to stop them from growing into financial monsters. If you have money worries, you can book an appointment with the Funding Team or access an advice agency such as the Citizens Advice Bureau www.yorkcab.org.uk.
York College Bursary
York College has committed to providing a Bursary Scheme which all eligible higher education students starting their course in September 2019 can apply to. If you are successful, you will receive a one off payment of £600 to help with the initial costs of settling into your programme, for example, you could use your bursary to help pay for travel costs or buy essential equipment for your course.
The Higher Education Bursary is split into three separate bursaries:
- Care Leavers Bursary
- Student Carer Bursary
- Financial Assistance Bursary
Eligibility for the Care Leaver and Student Carer bursaries are not based on your household income, but you will need to provide evidence of your situation. The Financial Assistance bursary will normally be assessed alongside your application to Student Finance England and you will not need to complete an additional form.
Find York College facilities information here.