FAQ

Here you will find a collection of answers to questions you have asked over the last few weeks. If you still don’t know how to find the correct help or have any concerns please message the RUSU Facebook Page or email coronavirus-students@reading.ac.uk.

We know this year hasn’t ended as expected and you haven’t been able to celebrate the end of your time at University of Reading in the same way as years gone by. We here at RUSU still want to be able to provide an end of University event and give you the opportunity to get together with friends and course mates to celebrate you achievements. To keep you updated about our plans for this we need a way to get in contact with you after your student emails expire.

If you would like to be kept up to date about what we have planned for you as a recent graduate over the course of the next year and hear from our Representation and Student Activities teams too, please click on the opt-in button below:

RUSU

Reading University Students' Union (RUSU) is an independent student-led charity that supports and represents students at University of Reading. Visit our website for more information.

All registered students are automatically members of Reading University Students’ Union (RUSU).

Please email us at rusu.websupport@reading.ac.uk and we'll do our best to help you out. Please provide the email address you're signing up with, and a clear description of the issue you are having including any error messages.

Please note: If you haven't received your validation email, please check your junk/spam folder. During times of high demand validation emails may be delayed. But don't worry, it will come to you.

We’re still primarily connecting digitally. Check out some digital spaces the student community uses to connect with each other:

The RUSU building and outlets remain closed for the time being, but we are still here for you digitally. RUSU staff are working remotely to ensure we can continue to support you during this challenging time. The Nursery is now open. The Merch Store is also open online: please note, however, that we are currently processing orders once to twice a week. This may result in longer than usual order and delivery times.

Student Officers

Yes, your Full-Time Officers are all contactable digitally and are continuing to work normal hours. You can contact them via email or their Facebook pages, details of which you can find on the Full-time Officer pages.

Freshers' Week / Welcome Week

Every year we welcome new students joining University of Reading to campus in late September. We run a range of activities and events to allow new students to meet and interact with other students. These events usually include freshers fayres, welcome talks and events, the all-important fancy dress themed nights out and the all-important Freshers’ Ball.

This year, we are anticipating our events are going to look slightly different to usual. We are still planning on bringing you a range of physical activities and events, but we are going to be keeping students’ health and safety as our key priority. Unless government guidance and restrictions change in the next few weeks we won’t be putting on club nights, but we do have plans for turning our venue into a giant table service pub, and also plan to put on events where small groups of you can get together and learn to make cocktails, play mini golf, take part in our infamous quiz and karaoke night or just chill out and watch a film on our giant big screen with a bunch of popcorn and snacks.

New students are expected to move into their accommodation between Tuesday 15th and Sunday 20th September. Welcome week officially starts when all students have moved into their accommodation, so on Sunday 20th September. Generally Welcome Week would last a week. This year, because people will be moving in from earlier than usual, we are planning to begin hosting events from Tuesday 15th September and will continue to provide these Welcome week events until Saturday 3rd October. After this we will be providing as many of our usual weekly and termly events as possible.

Usually we are a bit more organised than this, with a range of club nights scheduled, acts booked and a wristband advertised and on sale. However, in the current circumstances, with no guidance on when nightclubs will be safe to reopen, we are having to be a bit more adaptable and flexible with our offering.

Our advice, if the guidance doesn’t change before September, is to wait until you get here. We will be advertising what entertainment we will be offering on our Events Page. Wait until you arrive and meet your flatmates/housemates and decide as a group what activities and events you all want to do.

It’s best to check on our Events Page before attending anything as some events/activities will need to be pre-booked and you might have to register the details of the group of people you are attending with.

No official Students’ Union or University events are on sale yet. Some local and national promoters in the Town Centre are advertising and selling tickets. Some are real and some are ticketing scams so if you do decide to buy something, just be really careful and do some research. If it looks like they do something across multiple cities in the UK, that they have no venue advertised or there isn’t much information about how to contact the organisers then it’s probably a scam.

If you find a link and aren’t sure about it, we’re happy to give some advice, just email the link to enquiries@rusu.co.uk and we’ll take a look and let you know what we think.

Advice & Support

The advice team continues to offer support for students with academic, housing or money issues. If you feel you need support, in the first instance contact them through the online form. Although they are not able to offer face to face advice, Advisers will be happy to provide support by email, phone or skype during usual office hours (10:00-17:00, Monday-Friday). The advice team have compiled a comprehensive document with information about the effects of COVID-19 on students in regards to finance and housing.

For support with your assessments, you can

  • Contact your Support Centre – login to RISIS and use the Ask A Question service
  • Contact your Academic Tutor
  • Email take-home-exams@reading.ac.uk

For general academic support, you can:

For PGR academic support, you can:

  • Contact your Supervisor
  • Contact the Grad School

For financial support you can:

See below for welfare resources:

Supporting Yourself

Additional Support

In An Emergency

  • Your Doctor/ GP Surgery – you can request an emergency appointment.
  • NHS non-emergency advice – call 111 (available 24/7).
  • Emergency Services – 999.
  • University Security – 0118 378 7799 (non-emergency)/ 0118 378 6300 (emergency).
  • The Samaritans – 116 123 (available 24/7).
  • Berkshire NHS mental health crisis number – 0300 365 0300 (available 24/7).

See below for contacts:

For advice on Visas, contact immigration@reading.ac.uk. For any other advice contact the RUSU Advice Service.

Visit the Housing Advice section of our website for up-to-date housing advice, including Housing and Covid 19 FAQs answered by our Housing Advisers. See below for other housing advice resources:

Student Discount

Formerly known as the NUS Extra card, TOTUM gives you access to student discounts and deals on food and fashion, tech and travel, and everything in between. The TOTUM card costs £14.99 for a year (multiple-year options are available) and offers a huge number of discounts online and in the high street. You can purchase your TOTUM card online.

If you are an international student or regularly travel abroad, you can take advantage of a free one-year subscription to ISIC for no additional cost. Additionally, all students are eligible for free access to TOTUM Lite, a new offering of specially selected student discounts.

Your Course

You can find enrolment information including key dates on the University's online enrolment page.

It may be possible to change it depending on what course you are on and which course you want to change to, but you will need to contact your department to discuss the options available to you.

Please contact your Academic Tutor or the Programme Director for your course and they will be able to help. Alternatively, get in touch with the RUSU Advice Service.

Contact the RUSU Money Advisers through the online form.

Accommodation

Getting Around

You can download a campus map from the University website or pick one up from RUSU reception when the building is open.

There are three cash machines on campus. One is within the Students' Union building, around the corner from our Student Activities Centre. The others can be found next to the entrance of the Co-op and outside the campus branch of Santander.

There is the Co-Operative, where if you have a TOTUM card you are entitled to a 10% discount on all food items. A small selection of shops can be found on Christchurch Road near the Sportspark, and other major supermarkets can be reached by bus/car.

There are various doctors' surgeries located around campus. The University Medical Practice can be found in Northcourt Avenue, a 10 minute walk from the Whiteknights campus. You can register online or during Welcome Week. Chancellor House Surgery is located on Shinfield Road opposite the Whiteknights campus entrance. Representatives from the surgery will be at the Societies and Sports Fayres during Welcome Week so you can talk to them and register with them then.

Student Loan

Your loan is paid in three instalments at the beginning of each term. The first instalment should be paid into your bank account once you have registered as starting the course. This should happen when you pick up your university student card. If problems occur you can find help at the RUSU Advice Service or the Student Services Help Desk.

International Students

No Detriment Policy

RUSU held an all student vote on the no detriment policy, to inform its position. After considerable student feedback on the existing university policy, RUSU has written an open letter to the university, calling for the University to ensure that their grade safety net covers as many students as possible.

Complaints

For complaints related to Covid-19, fill out the complaints form. For all other complaints, draft your statement and compile evidence to studentcomplaints@reading.ac.uk. If you need support with making a complaint Contact the RUSU Advice Service.