Information for students

Page last updated 19/11/2020

Teaching and learning

Information around student assessment, mitigation arrangements, tuition fees and complaint processes relating to coronavirus.

2020/21: Teaching and learning arrangements from September

In line with Government guidance, the university campus is only available for students who are undertaking training in prioritised courses: health, social work and education. These students are allowed to return to in-person, on-campus teaching.

Researchers and research students should conduct their research from home where possible unless you need to access specialist facilities on campus.

The Government plans to review the current guidance mid-February.

On 4 January the Prime Minister announced a new national lockdown in England. The Government guidance includes information about universities which you can read here.

The guidance allows for students who are undertaking training in the following subject areas to return to campus for in-person, on-campus learning in line with their timetable.

  • Health
  • Education
  • Social work

Researchers and research students should conduct their research from home where possible unless you need to access specialist facilities on campus.

The Government plans to review the guidance mid-February.

In academic year 2020/21, your course will be delivered via a blend of online and digital learning and on-campus teaching and learning, with the necessary Covid-19 social distancing and other measures in place on campus informed by Government and Public Health England advice and guidance. Importantly, the teaching content you will receive won’t change; it will be what was planned for the academic year 2020/21 before the current Covid-19 outbreak. Not only does this maximise your learning experience, it also ensures that we support our more vulnerable learners, including those who may need to self-isolate or shield. 

The key points about your learning and teaching experience are:

  • Your start date will not change and you will start university at the original planned time
  • Course delivery will typically be in three 10-week blocks
  • To comply with social distancing, you will experience a ‘blended’ approach to learning – this is a mix of face-to-face on-campus and online teaching and learning
  • In the period up to December 2020 (teaching block 1) we are working within the government 2 metre social distancing measures. During this time, we will prioritise small-group and specialist teaching and are not planning to deliver large-group teaching on campus throughout 2020/2021. This will ensure that maximum space will be available for work that requires the use of specialist space or resources
  • We remain determined that as many students as possible will access on-campus contact with tutors in each term. However, in most cases, if you choose not to attend, or are not able, to attend campus due to Covid-19 (e.g. due to self-isolation, shielding or travel restrictions), the taught content will be available online
  • Wherever possible we have created ‘study bubbles’ – these are groups of students who consistently study together
  • In the event of a further government lockdown in response to Covid-19, we will prioritise digital and online learning and support to enable students to continue with and complete their studies. This will include the achievement of all learning outcomes including any specified professional statutory and regulatory body accreditation requirements where this applies
  • If there is an easing of Covid-19 restrictions, we will continue to provide blended delivery for teaching block 1 or semester 1 in 2020/21. We will keep teaching blocks 2 and 3 or semester 2 under review, informed by Public Health England advice

What is a study bubble?

We have scheduled teaching for student groups within your course and modules in specific zones on campus. You will study in these allocated teaching groups for campus-based core modules and this will be your study bubble. 

How do study bubbles work?

By remaining in your allocated study bubbles you will limit contact with other students. This can help to mitigate Covid-19 infection risks. It is important that you keep to your allocated bubbles and do not swap bubbles with other students after teaching commences.

How many study bubbles am I in?

The majority of students will be in one or two study bubbles but elective choices, academic adviser sessions or specialist lab-based modules may result in you being in other study bubbles.

Can I change study bubbles?

To minimise the risk of spread of the Covid-19 infection, you should attend your scheduled on-campus sessions and remain in your allocated study bubbles. You must not swap or attend study bubbles that you are not allocated to.  

What happens if there is a confirmed Covid-19 case in my study bubble?

You will be notified if there is a risk of possible Covid-19 infection and if any sessions need to be changed. All teaching rooms are cleaned in accordance with our Cleaning Charter and this minimises the risk of infection for students and staff.

Will I be turned away if I turn up to class and it’s not my study bubble in session?

To minimise the risk of spread of the Covid-19 infection, you should attend your scheduled on-campus sessions and remain in your allocated study bubbles. Tutors will check the study bubble list with students attending before the session begins. You will be asked to leave any study bubble sessions on campus that you have not been scheduled to attend. If you have not received your timetable and do not have details of your scheduled sessions, please contact administrators in your School office who can assist you. 

I’m in accommodation. How do study bubbles work with my household?

There is no relationship between study and accommodation bubbles apart from nursing students. Students will be in different accommodation and study bubbles. You should ensure that you follow the social distancing

We have created detailed plans for learning and teaching which will meet social distancing rules and will create a safe environment in which you can learn. This involves moving to teaching students in small groups face-to-face, holding lectures online, reducing the number of students within specialist facilities and teaching students within specified zones of the campus. We will continue to follow Government and PHE guidance around Covid-19 in order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of both students and staff.

We will prioritise face-to-face teaching and practical teaching to meet the intended learning outcomes and any requirements of relevant professional, statutory and regulatory bodies (PSRB) if your course includes these elements. This will ensure that your course retains its full professional status.

If there is an easing of Covid-19 restrictions, we will continue to provide blended delivery for teaching block 1 or semester 1 in 2020/21. We will keep teaching blocks 2 and 3 or semester 2 under review, informed by Government and Public Health England advice.

In the event of a further government lockdown in response to Covid-19, we will prioritise digital and online learning and support to enable students to continue with and complete their studies. This will include the achievement of all learning outcomes including any specified professional statutory and regulatory body accreditation requirements where this applies.

We are committed to ensuring you continue to have opportunities to access the learning and wellbeing support that you need over the forthcoming year. General learning spaces, including access to libraries, will be available to be booked online; and where specialist space is needed, this will either be provided: as normal; created in newly adapted spaces; or replicated as part of an enhanced suite of online resources. Library support will be provided 24/7 online.

We believe the wellbeing of our students is very important. We are offering the same high-quality support services in the next academic year as usual. These will mainly be delivered online and cover money advice, mental health support and disability services.

Our Students’ Union will also be providing their usual support and activities, some of which will be delivered online, covering welfare, education, housing and social matters.

We will not be offering refunds or offering discounted tuition fees to all students as standard. The pandemic has resulted in changes to how courses are delivered. However, we continue to support all our students to achieve their desired outcomes and ensure no-one is academically disadvantaged by the current situation caused by Covid-19.

Your course will be delivered via a blend of online and digital learning and on-campus teaching and learning. The course content you will receive and the learning outcomes you are working towards this academic year won’t change; it will remain as planned for the academic year 2020/21 before the current Covid-19 outbreak and as communicated to you by your course team in June, July & August.

We have put additional measures in place to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on teaching and assessments by adapting assessments and introducing new guidelines for our mitigation process. We have invested in making our campuses Covid-secure and to provide additional and necessary student support services in response to student feedback.

These changes have been made to comply with government guidance and reduce the risk of transmission on campus. All the decisions that the university is making to respond to the changes Covid-19 has imposed on our lives are being made to ensure that you can progress your studies and earn a qualification that you are proud of, and that will be valued by employers and accrediting bodies, in what we all acknowledge are less than ideal circumstances.

We believe that the measures we’ve put in place ensure the ongoing delivery of your educational experience and outcome, but we recognise that there may be some specific circumstances in which we may need to consider the impact of these adjustments and what we are able to continue to deliver through the pandemic as it evolves.  We will consider these issues on a case-by-case basis. If you consider that you have been disadvantaged as a result of the actions that we have taken, please speak to your course team in the first instance. If you wish to make a formal complaint, please complete the Covid-19 complaints form.

If you’re experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic and the measures that have been taken, please contact our Money Advice Team. They’re here to provide advice on budgeting, managing debt and signposting potential sources of financial support.

2020/21: Course changes

  • Your request will be considered by your course team
  • Should your request be permitted this would mean you would suspend your studies and recommence these in 2021/22
  • This may mean that you need to study a different version of the course or that some option modules may have changed. You will be notified of this nearer the time
  • You will also need to consider if there are implications for any professional accreditation associated with your course. Your course team will be able to advise you on this
  • This may also have implications for your student loan, or your visa if you are an international student
  • Further advice and guidance are available from the Student Money Advice Team, Student Immigration Advice & Compliance or the Students’ Union Advice Service

  • Places on courses may not be available for 2020/21 entry
  • You would need to satisfy any applicable course admission requirements and professional requirements (where applicable) and processes for entry with advanced standing or credit transfer
  • This may have implications for any professional, regulatory or statutory body accreditation status where applicable. Your course team will be able to advise you on this
  • This may also have implications for your student loan, particularly if you were required by the other provider to start afresh on your selected course
  • You would retain any credit you have successfully achieved and been awarded at Leeds Beckett University. This may not meet the applicable course admission or professional requirements for admission to another course and this will need to be considered

  • You would be awarded any credit or contained award you have successfully achieved by Leeds Beckett University
  • This may also have implications for your student loan, particularly if you were to continue studies at another provider and were required to start afresh on your selected course
  • Further advice and guidance are available from your course team, the Student Money Advice Team or the Students’ Union Advice Service

Yes, however, the new provider will make the decision as to whether to accept your application. 

  • You will need to satisfy any applicable course admission requirements and processes for entry with advanced standing or credit transfer
  • Places on courses at other higher education providers may not be available for 2020/21 or 2021/22 entry
  • This may have implications for any professional, regulatory or statutory body accreditation status where applicable
  • This may also have implications for your student loan, particularly if you were required by the other provider to start afresh on your selected course
  • Other higher education providers may also be making changes to courses and methods of delivery in response to Covid-19 for 2020/21
  • You would be awarded any credit or contained award you have successfully achieved at Leeds Beckett University

2020/21: Teaching and learning, mitigation and extenuating circumstances

Yes mitigation is now in place. From 5 January 2021, we will reintroduce the changes to the Academic Regulations approved during the first wave of the pandemic, the “safety net”.

The revisions to the progression and award criteria for students in 2020/21 constitute an application of mitigation Category A for all students. For more information please see the revised Progression and Award Factsheet on the University Academic Regulations web page – Section 4: Progression and Award.

You are entitled to submit individual requests for extenuating circumstances where you are seeking an extension to an assessment deadline or mitigation under our academic regulations (section 8).

The online form is available at the link below:
https://myhub.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/mitigation

You are strongly advised to speak to an adviser at the Students’ Union Advice Service before completing the form so they can advise you on how to present your circumstances.




When examiners assess your work, they make academic decisions based on your academic performance against the learning outcomes. Our university’s academic regulations 2020/21 set out the requirements for assessments and awards.

In April 2020, the Academic Board agreed a plan, guidance and changes to the Academic Regulations for academic year 2019/20 to enable our university to make appropriate academic decisions covering assessment, student progression and the award of academic credit and degrees on undergraduate and taught postgraduate courses during the Covid-19 pandemic.

These may be used for academic decisions relating to students whose studies may have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in 2019/20 academic year and for students who were affected by the Covid-19 Pandemic in 2019/20 and whose awards or progression decisions will be concluded in 2020/21 academic year.

Following the National Lockdown announced on Monday January 4 the university is reintroducing the changes to the University Academic Regulations that we approved during the first wave of the pandemic.

For most undergraduate students this will mean your evaluation is based on 60 credits (50% of the work achieved this year), with equivalent reductions for taught postgraduate courses. There are some restrictions on courses with professional accreditation and your Course Team will be in contact with you to clarify the situation on your own course at some point.

We will be able to support applications for the highest level of “Category A” extenuation from all students, for the period of the COVID-19 measures.  

Further information on the approved 2020/21 Covid-19 pandemic arrangements and a factsheet for students will be updated shortly and is available under Section 4 of our Academic Regulations for the applicable academic year.

We recognise that circumstances may arise in which you are unable to complete or submit assessments. These are known as extenuating circumstances.

Students may submit details of their extenuating circumstances to:

  • request an extension to an assessment deadline (mitigation at the point of assessment), or
  • apply for mitigation to lessen the harmful effect of their extenuating circumstances on assessment outcomes.

You are entitled to submit individual requests for extenuating circumstances where you are seeking an extension to an assessment deadline or mitigation under our academic regulations (section 8).

In considering the assessment of students, our university will consider individual requests for mitigation due to extenuating circumstances which might have affected a student’s performance.

We encourage all students to do their best and to submit their assessments.

We recognise that circumstances may arise in which students are unable to complete or submit assessments or may impact on students’ engagement with their studies and assessed work. These are known as extenuating circumstances.

If you have extenuating circumstances that are affecting you and you are unable to meet the assessment deadlines you should advise us and contact your tutor and submit a request for mitigation.

If the submitted extenuating circumstances are found to be valid, mitigation in respect of these will be considered in accordance with our university's regulations.

Extenuating Circumstances and Mitigation

You can apply for extensions to assessment deadlines, a deferral or an authorised absence if there are circumstances impacting on your ability to submit work. These circumstances don’t have to be related to Covid-19.

This may lead to your School deciding to give you:

  • An extension to an assessment deadline, at the point of assessment; or
  • If an extension is not possible and you have extenuating circumstances which are affecting you, then these may be considered by Progression and Award Boards for mitigation when making academic decisions relating to progression and award

As indicated above if you do not submit an assessment and have not without good cause provided us with information on extenuating circumstances, then normally this would result in a recording of a non-submission of assessment which will impact on progression.

Categories of Mitigation

Mitigation is categorised in section 8.3.13 and 8.3.15 of our Academic Regulations according to the seriousness of extenuating circumstances as follows:

  • Category A – Very serious - Category A mitigation permits the Progression and Award Board to consider alternative forms of mitigation in their determination of academic judgments and decisions
  • Category B – Sufficiently serious to defer assessment
  • Rejected – the Panel will reject claims which are late or are not deemed sufficiently serious to warrant deferral. Where a student’s extenuating circumstances and request for mitigation relates to periods in excess of 2 weeks, then independent documentary or medical evidence normally will be required to be submitted by students to support mitigation requests

Role of Progression and Award Boards

If the submitted extenuating circumstances are found to be valid, mitigation in respect of these will be duly considered in accordance with our university's regulations.

The Progression and Award Board will also receive a report on all extensions to assessment deadlines granted at the point of assessment and all outcomes of requests for authorised absence granted.

The mitigation permitted by the Progression and Award Board will normally be deferral of assessment to permit the student to be assessed as if for the first time (Section 8.3.15 Academic Regulations).

Category A mitigation permits the Progression and Award Board to consider alternative forms of mitigation in their determination of academic judgments and decisions (see section 8.3.15 of the Academic Regulations).

General Principles of Student Progression and Award

Our university operates a principle of fit to sit/submit in regard to extenuating circumstances and mitigation. The principle asserts that students who undertake an assessment declare themselves fit to take that assessment; any claim for extenuating circumstances in relation to that assessment will not, normally, be considered.

It is your responsibility to bring extenuating circumstances to the university’s attention in accordance with Section 8 of our Academic Regulations.

We encourage all students to do their best and to submit their assessments.

If you do not submit an assessment and have not without good cause provided us with information on extenuating circumstances, then normally this would result in a recording of a non-submission of assessment (see Sections 8.2.5 to 8.2.7 of our university’s Academic Regulations).

If you have not submitted assessments, this may mean that there may not be sufficient evidence that you have passed the learning outcomes of the level / award and may mean that you will need to complete further reassessments or may result in other outcomes including failing the year.  This may also impact on your ability to evidence and meet any specific Professional Statutory and Regulatory Body requirements.

If you have specific individual extenuating circumstances that are affecting you and you are unable to meet the extended deadlines you should advise us and submit a request for mitigation for these individual extenuating circumstances.

In accordance with our Academic Regulations, Progression & Award Boards may consider the application of Category A mitigation for extenuating circumstances relating to Covid-19 when making academic decisions in accordance with our university’s Academic Regulations 2020/21.

Further information on mitigation is provided below in the FAQs.

Mitigations decisions by our university’s Progression and Award Boards are categorised as Category A – Very Serious or Category B – Sufficiently Serious to defer assessment.

The mitigation decided by the Board will normally be deferral of assessment to allow the student to be assessed as if for the first time.

Alternative forms of mitigation available for consideration by the University’s Progression and Award Board in relation to Category A mitigation are detailed in section 8.3.15 of the Academic Regulations.

You may apply for extensions, mitigation or authorised absence if you have specific extenuating circumstances that may be affecting your engagement with your studies or your assessment or examinations, these may be Covid-19 related or other non-Covid circumstances.

The University operates a principle of fit to sit/submit in regard to Extenuating Circumstances and Mitigation. The principle asserts that students who undertake an assessment declare themselves fit to take that assessment; any claim for extenuating circumstances in relation to that assessment will not, normally, be considered.

We have adapted our usual processes to reflect the current exceptional circumstances due to coronavirus (Covid-19). These revisions to our processes have been carried forward into the Academic Year 2020/21, in recognition of our ongoing support for students in this uncertain situation. Please be assured that should you fall ill with this virus and have to self-isolate, now, or at any time, we will make sure you do not suffer academic disadvantage. 

Applying for an Extension (up to 10 working days) or Mitigation:

You can apply for mitigation, including an extension (up to 10 working days), where a short-term response will be effective, or authorised absence. Your extenuating circumstances may be as a result of:

  • Illness
  • Inability to attend an assessment or examination due to the above
  • Other factors that are sufficiently serious enough in nature to result in you being unable to attend, complete or submit an assessment on time

You can submit one request at a time, for example, if you plan to request an extension and request mitigation then you have to make two online submissions.

We accept that it will be difficult to obtain evidence from a GP or health care professional at the present time. For students wishing to request an extension, self-certification for up to 10 working days will be permitted. 

Mitigation related to Coronavirus (Covid-19):

Where a student’s request for mitigation relates to periods in excess of 10 working days and directly related to coronavirus (Covid-19) then independent documentary or medical evidence normally will not be required to be submitted to support mitigation requests. 

You are still required to complete the online mitigation form in full outlining your extenuating circumstances and provide a short statement of your current circumstances and how these have impacted on your studies.

Mitigation not related to Coronavirus (Covid-19):

Where a student’s request for mitigation relates to periods in excess of 10 working days and not related to coronavirus (Covid-19) then independent documentary or medical evidence normally will be required to be submitted to support mitigation requests. You can attach any documentary evidence to the online mitigation form in addition to a short statement of your current circumstances and how these have impacted on your studies.

View our revised extenuating circumstances and online mitigation process on MyHub.

Our student fact sheet on the revised extenuating circumstances and mitigation process in the case of coronavirus (Covid-19) for 2021 is currently being updated and will be available to view shortly from Section 8 of our Academic Regulations.

Yes. We have encouraged and are supporting all students to continue with their studies and to submit all their assessed work.

Please be assured that should you fall ill with this virus and have to self-isolate, now, or at any time, we will make sure you do not suffer academic disadvantage. Students who are advised to self-isolate, or who are ill due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) can apply for mitigation or an authorised absence.

Yes, where the application of mitigation is permitted by the PSRB. This will need to take account of any specific PSRB requirements in respect of essential modules that must be successfully completed and passed, any requirement for a minimum pass mark, skill or level of achievement or attendance or other PSRB related regulatory requirement.

Please contact your course director for more information.

Yes. The University needs to understand where you have specific extenuating circumstances so that appropriate mitigation can be defined. Normally, students will receive one mitigation outcome even if there are multiple extenuating circumstances in play (e.g. both personal and Covid-19 related).

View our revised extenuating circumstances and mitigation process on MyHub.

A streamlined version of the student complaints procedure is in place to handle complaints relating to coronavirus (Covid-19). You can find the complaint form and procedure on our student complaints page.