Preparing to welcome students to Leeds: key dates, resources and communications

The start of the 20/21 session is approaching and colleagues across the University have been working hard to create new resources and processes to help us welcome new and returning students to Leeds.

New resources, processes and ways of working are available to help colleagues welcome students

Great Hall in summer

To ensure that everyone is aware of key messages and resources, we’ll be sharing student communications with staff before they go out, so you’re able to speak to students and colleagues with confidence.

There will be an update on student education communications and activities in eNews every week ahead of the weekly student newsletter, linked to a dedicated news page where you can see all upcoming and recently sent communications.

Director of student opportunity Christina Edgar, who is leading the Student Experience workstream, said: “Our teams are working incredibly hard to make sure new and returning students feel supported and confident, but also excited about, coming to Leeds, in this unusual time.

“We want to share plans and resources with all colleagues so everyone feels confident in our approach and can access the resources they need to support all students over the coming weeks.”

Here’s what’s already happened since our last update

Study space is available for students. Find out more about where students can study on campus, including our libraries, computer clusters, Parkinson Court and more. Additional locations will be added to this study space website as they become available during the next few weeks.

Student ambassadors are visible in key locations, helping students to find their way around the campus, and to encourage everyone to play their part in working together to stay safe 

Guidance on teaching face-to-face in a Covid-secure way

After months away, we understand that some colleagues may be feeling anxious about carrying out face-to-face teaching activities. So, we want to share some guidance that has been prepared to help you. The information describes the safety measures in place and the simple actions everyone can take to reduce the risk of exposure to covid-19.

The guidance covers what to do:

  • when you’re setting up for teaching 
  • when students are entering and leaving the room 
  • to ensure social distancing during the session 
  • before you leave the room  
  • to ensure advice on face coverings is followed 
  • in the event of a medical emergency or fire alarm.

A reminder of the 10 points to remember in a teaching space will also be posted in all central teaching spaces.

New guidance on engagement monitoring will be issued to all staff shortly, covering academic and professional service roles in monitoring engagement and supporting students deemed to be ‘at risk’. You can read the updated guidance here.

Here’s what’s coming on campus and in communications during the next few weeks. We’ll add to this weekly, so keep checking back!

Week commencing 28 September

The new Returning to Leeds resource will be launched to returning students. This covers everything existing students need to know about their first few weeks. A link will be shared with staff as soon as the resource is live. In the meantime, returning students can access information via the For Students website.

Teaching starts in new hybrid mode, according to SCALA (student-centred active learning approach) 

Student ambassadors will be visible on campus, helping the flow of students in and out of key locations

Academic Personal Tutors – host group tutorial welcome meetings and/or begin 1-2-1 meetings. View the resources that have been developed to support you, including template welcome emails, ice breakers, a visual guide for signposting students and more.

In case you missed it...

The Getting Started at Leeds resource is live and has been shared with more than 12,600 new students. You can see the comms that have gone to students via the launch newsletter

Just want the headlines? Watch the introductory video for all the key information.

Student iInformation points remain open across campus: Worsley Building, in Maurice Keyworth, Chemistry West and Ziff. 

The Student Information Helpline is live:

  • open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday
  • available by phone and by email; and
  • updated with information on the Asking for help webpage

Registration continues – read about the new and updated Registration processes for 2020/21

Everyone should be focusing on developing a sense of belonging

  • Important for wellbeing, student experience and maximising student success
  • View the intro to Sense of Belonging
  • New resources, including workshops, to help you understand what support is available and the role you play in creating a sense of belonging

Useful resources and networks

Resources and information already available includes:

Focus on support: Join TIPS for support with hybrid learning

The TIPS (Teaching, Innovation and Practice in Student Education) Community is a growing group of colleagues from across the University working as a community of practice to support each other and share information, tips, tricks and learning about Student Education. Our current focus is on challenges and opportunities of teaching this academic year, in particular getting to grips with the Student Centred Active Learning Approach (SCALA). You can join the community through Teams.

The TIPS Stream channel has examples of practice that have been shared by colleagues. 

The Share, Adopt, Adapt Workshops (SAAW), co-organised with LITE, are synchronous sessions and offer a deeper dive into an element student education practice. These are advertised on the Digital Practice website, as well as through the MS TIPS Community. All sessions are recorded for recap or catch-up through the TIPS Steam channel (link above). We look forward to welcoming you to our online community and events.

Please note this article was first published on 28 August and is updated each time we receive new information. Please check back each week for new updates and resources.

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