Advice Service Clients

Reviewed May 2019

We provide advice and information to all members of Reading University Students’ Union (RUSU). This means all full-time, part-time and distance learning students registered at the University of Reading.

The main focus of our work is to support students so that they are able to successfully complete their studies. We give advice on student money issues including funding and DWP benefits, housing, and welfare matters. We give advice on the various options available to students so that they are able to decide which course of action to take. We give individual help when it is required.

Our clients

The Advice Service is able to provide advice to everyone who is a member of RUSU. All University of Reading students, irrespective of the level of their course, their fee status or their mode of study, are automatically members of RUSU upon enrolment. As such, we are able to provide advice to all of the following students:

  • Foundation or pre-sessional students;
  • Undergraduates;
  • Postgraduates (Taught & Research);
  • International students;
  • EU students;
  • UK students;
  • Students on placement;
  • Students under suspension.

In some instances, the Advice Service will continue to provide support to individuals who have recently ceased to be members. Examples include:

  • Individuals who have been supported by the Advice Service through the University processes and procedures, who have ceased to be a student but need advice taking a case to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA);
  • Vulnerable students requiring help to move on from university;
  • Students who have recently graduated and are existing clients of the service, where it would be detrimental to their case if our services were withdrawn.
  • Student dependents (partner and children) where the case has an impact on students’ ability to remain on course, and only in conjunction with, and consent from the student themselves.

The Advice Service may also provide advice to employees of RUSU (e.g. Student Officers or other members of staff) where to do so does not cause a conflict of interest. See Conflict of Interest Policy for further guidance.

The Advice Service produces information which is available on the RUSU website and which is therefore available to anyone who wishes to search for it.

Following an individual request, the Advice Service is able to provide information (but not in depth advice) to the following individuals:

  • Prospective students with an unconditional offer from the University of Reading;
  • Prospective students attending open days;
  • University staff asking for information to help, or on behalf of students.

In the latter case, we would encourage staff to signpost student to the Advice Service for direct support.

There are some instances where the Advice Service may deem it necessary to withdraw its service from students who would otherwise be eligible to use it. These circumstances are not covered within this document but can be found in the following documents:

  • Conflict of Interest Policy and Procedure;
  • Signposting and Referral Policy and Procedure

We are unable to offer individual advice to:

The Advice Service cannot provide advice to:

  • People who are not students at the University of Reading.
  • Students studying at the University of Reading Malaysia campus.
  • Landlords;
  • Letting Agencies;
  • Parents;
  • Friends;
  • Members of University Staff;
  • People who are not members of RUSU.

The Advice Service encourages students to seek support for themselves. As such, the Advice Service is unable to provide advice to people acting on behalf of a student. This include:

  • Parents;
  • Friends;
  • Members of University Staff.

Note: in some circumstances the Advice Service may provide advice to others acting on behalf of students, but this would only be considered where the students is struggling to or is unable to look after their own affairs (for example, if they had a mental health issue or a disability which impairs their ability to undertake some aspects of their personal life). In line with our Confidentiality Policy, this would only be undertaken with express authorization of the student.