Getting Started

This page will tell you everything you need to know when starting student life at University College Birmingham.

Before you arrive

Before you start your course at UCB, check this list to make sure that you have done all of the things on it that apply to you. Some of them you should have done already!

  • If you have a medical condition that might, in your opinion, affect your academic performance or have a specific learning difficulty such as dyslexia, you should have already contacted the Academic Skills Centre located in the Library of UCB’s Summer Row Campus.
  • If you are a full-time student on a programme which will bring you into contact with young children and/or vulnerable adults, then you will need to complete a criminal record check (known properly as a Disclosure and Barring Service check) before you can undertake a work placement. This is a statutory requirement, designed to protect children and/or vulnerable adults. You should have received details from UCB of what you need to do but if you have not please contact the Placement Office on 0121 604 1000 ext 2398.
  • If you are a student on a programme subject to Fitness to Practise requirements, you will also be required to complete a criminal record check and should bring with you any documents necessary for this.
  • Check the induction and registration dates and times which have been sent to you.
  • Ensure that you complete and return any forms as requested by UCB as soon as you are able.

When you arrive

Be sure to attend the induction and enrolment sessions for your programme. When you enrol, you will collect your student ID card (see below). You should ensure that you bring the following items with you to enrolment:

  • Evidence of entry qualifications
  • Necessary documents for fees assessment/payment (see below)

Documents to bring with you

Please ensure that you bring the following items with you to Birmingham, if you do not live locally.

  • An official document to prove your identity and nationality e.g. passport or birth certificate.
  • If you were not born in the UK or EU please bring either your passport, biometric residency permit or Home Office letter confirming your residency status in the UK.  If your current passport does not contain your residency status (which confirms your current leave to remain in the UK) you must also bring the passport which contains this. 
  • If you are an asylum seeker please bring with you your Application Registration Card.
  • If you receive a State benefit in your own name please bring a copy of your benefit letter (this must be no more than six months old).
  • GCSE and/or other qualification results, either the certificates or result slips. Even if your course does not have a GCSE entry requirement we still need to record your results.

Now you have arrived

  • It is essential that you register with a doctor and/or dentist in the area where you are living while at UCB. Information regarding registering with a doctor and/or dentist is available either from the UCB Nurse, the Student Services Unit, or in the case of residents of the Maltings or Cambrian Hall, in the information pack provided to you upon arrival. UCB works closely with the Halcyon Medical Centre located in Birmingham City Centre. Representatives from the practice will be available to discuss registration at various events after you have arrived.
  • Become a member of the National Union of Students (NUS). Membership is free, although a charge entitles you to admission at concessionary rates to theatres, cinemas and other places of entertainment, reduced price travel on national and regional coach, bus and rail networks, and many other privileges.
  • Make the most of your time at UCB by visiting the Guild of Students at the start of term. This will introduce you to the numerous clubs and societies existing in UCB, along with other organisations providing services to students. If you are seeking part-time work, it will also be a chance for you to find out about hired@UCB and to meet some employers.
  • If you will be living out of walking distance from UCB, you might want to obtain a season ticket for travel on trains and/or buses in the Birmingham area. If you are aged between 16 and 18, then you will be eligible for the Network West Midlands 16-18 Photocard. If you are aged 19 or over, then, as a member of the NUS, you will be able to travel at a reduced rate on all public transport services in the West Midlands. The telephone number for Centro, the regional bus and train operator, is (0121) 200 2700.

Your ID card

You will be issued with an ID card when you enrol on your course. The card should be kept safe as it will be valid throughout the duration of your course. You will need your card to enter UCB's campus buildings, to borrow books and other materials from the libraries, to join the Guild of Students, to use UCB sports facilities, to gain entry to examination rooms, when submitting work for assessment and when collecting certificates.

If you lose your card, you can obtain a replacement from the UCB Finance Office, on the First Floor of the Summer Row site. There is a charge of £5 for a replacement card.

You may have some questions regarding your fees:

Can I pay my tuition fees in instalments?

If you are paying your own fees you can either pay in full at enrolment, or payment can be made in 4 equal instalments:

Level 1 & 2 courses - the first instalment must be paid when you enrol, then 3 further instalments in November, February and April.

Level 3 courses – instalments are due by the end of October, January, March and May.

 

Can I apply for a student loan to cover the cost of my tuition fees?

If you are aged 19 and over on the first day of your course and want to study a full Level 3 qualification, but are not entitled to fee remission, you may qualify for an Advanced Learner Loan. This is a non-means tested loan and is available from the UK Government to pay the tuition fees of full level 3 qualifications (course exclusions apply) starting after 1st August 2016. The loan is paid directly to UCB to cover the cost of your tuition, and does not have to be repaid until you are earning over £21,000 a year. For more information, please visit the Advanced Learner Loans section of the Gov.UK site.

 

What do I need to do if my employer is going to pay my tuition fees?

If your fees are being paid by your employer please bring a letter, on headed paper, from your employer confirming this and clearly stating who the invoice should be raised to.

 

Where can I go for advice about Further Education tuition fees?

If you have any questions about the information contained on this page please contact our Finance Department on 0121 232 4013 or call in to our office on the First Floor of the Summer Row site.

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