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Frequently Asked Questions

The Advice Team is a professional service always here to help you resolve your problems.

  • How do I get Advice?

    Please log your enquiry via this short form. You will be allocated an initial 20 minute call from an Adviser (we’ll try our best to get back to you within 48 hours). Any subsequent advice can be provided via phone, email, Teams or in person.

  • What do you advise on?

    We mainly advise on academic issues (extenuating circumstances, appeals, complaints, disciplinary, fitness to practice), housing and student funding. We can also advise on consumer and employment issues. If we can’t help we’ll point you towards someone who can.

  • Can I see someone in person?

    We usually give initial advice by phone but if you specify that you want to see someone in person we can arrange this

  • What are your opening times?

    Our advice hours are Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm. However, we can offer earlier or later calls or appointments if necessary.

  • How quickly will I get advice?

    We aim to get back to you within 48 hours. We do our best to deal with urgent enquiries the same day.

  • Is the service confidential?

    Yes, the information you provide us with is not shared with anyone outside of the service without your permission. There are some limited exceptions to this, for example, if it is felt that there is a risk to you or someone else. Full details can be found in our Confidentiality Policy

  • Is the service independent?

    Yes, the BCUSU Advice Service is independent from the University and any other organisations. We provide advice that is in your best interests. 


  • How do I claim extenuating circumstances?

    You need to submit a Claim via MySRS. You should submit the claim as soon as possible. If you submit a claim more than 5 working days after the assessment deadline, you will also need to provide evidence to explain your delay in claiming. Our full guide to claiming plus a video guide can be found here.
  • Can I challenge my mark?

    There is an academic appeal procedure but this does not allow challenges to academic judgement, i.e. a student disagreeing with the opinion of a marker. The academic appeal procedure can be used if there is an aspect of the assessment process that has not been followed. The University expect any points you put forward to be factual rather than opinion. You also need to say how any error affected the outcome of the assessment. An example of a ground for appeal is if your work was supposed to be moderated (i.e. the mark checked by another member of staff) but was not. Your feedback sheet should indicate if your work was selected for moderation.
    If you do decide to submit a formal academic appeal the form can be found in the attachments on this iCity page. You have 15 working days in which to submit a formal appeal from the date the results are published by the Exam Board.
  • How do I make a complaint?

    You are encouraged to raise your complaint at a local level first. If you want to raise a formal complaint you need to submit a form. Details of the Student Complaints Procedure and a copy of the Formal Complaints Form are on iCity (towards the bottom of the page under ‘Attachments’). You should usually make a complaint within 15 working days of a single incident or the last of a series of incidents occurring. However, complaints made outside 15 working days may still be considered.
  • I’ve been accused of academic misconduct. What should I do?

    Try not to panic. It is rare for students to be withdrawn for academic misconduct. You will be given full details of the allegation plus any evidence. We can talk you through the process and possible outcomes. We can help you put together a response and prepare for any meetings. Log an enquiry via this short form and we’ll get back to you.

  • Where can I find accommodation?

    There is a range of different types of accommodation available. Our website lists the main types and where to start looking.
  • Is my tenancy agreement legal?

    Advisers can read through your agreement before you sign it. Log an enquiry via this short form and we’ll get back to you.
  • Can I leave my accommodation early?

    Most tenancy agreements will require you to find a replacement tenant if you want to leave before the end date. We can check your agreement for you. Suggestions of where to advertise your room can be found on our website. You may be able to negotiate an early release with the landlord. If you do, make sure you get this in writing.
  • How can I get my deposit back?

    All deposits taken by landlords in relation to assured shorthold tenancies have to be covered by a Tenancy Deposit Protection scheme. If at the end of the tenancy there has been no damage to the property beyond reasonable ‘wear and tear’ and no bills remain outstanding, then the deposit should be returned in full. See our page on deposits for more detail.
  • Where can I find a suitable guarantor?

    If you can’t find someone to act as a guarantor there are guarantor services who may be able to help. One is Housing Hand and another is Your Guarantor. Each have their own rules so make sure you read the terms and conditions carefully.

  • Can you help if I’m having difficulties with my student funding?

    Yes. Log an enquiry via this short form and we’ll get back to you.
  • How do I apply to the Financial Assistance Fund?

    The University administers funds for students who are in financial difficulty. This includes the Financial Assistance Fund which is for students who may be considering leaving their course due to hardship or unexpected financial issues. More details and the form can be found on iCity.
  • How do I change the amount of loan I’ve asked to borrow from SFE?

    If you originally requested less than the maximum and have changed your mind, you can do this via your student finance account. Click on ‘change your application’ then ‘change the loan amount you have already applied for’. This will take you to a ‘Maintenance Loan Request form’ which you complete and send to Student Finance England, PO Box 210, Darlington DL1 9HJ.






Further Advice

Who can I contact for more advice?

You can log an enquiry with BCUSU Advice Team.

In addition, University support services are still running with staff working from home and contact details can be found on iCity here.



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