Student life

We know how important making friends and taking part in clubs and societies are to your university experience.

We're working hard along with the Students' Union to make sure as you begin your student life with us, you can also discover our many exciting student communities through societies, sports and volunteering networks. Our Students' Union are working to make these accessible online, so that you can explore these communities and start to join the ones that interest you from day one.  

We've provided some guidance on how the social aspects of your time at Manchester will work under current UK government advice, from clubs and societies, to sports and relaxed socialising.

How will social distancing operate on campus?

Please be assured that your safety and wellbeing is our priority.

We're busy making our campus safe by putting appropriate social distancing and new cleaning measures in place. It is likely that we will use dedicated entrances and exits along with one-way systems, distance markers combined with other safety measures including ensuring students and staff have access to hand washing facilities and hand sanitising stations. Our buildings will be cleaned and disinfected regularly.

Students will receive two washable face masks in their welcome pack and clear guidance on how our teaching spaces, libraries, study spaces and labs will operate to ensure everyone’s safety. We will also be briefing students on health and safety, as part of our welcome and induction activities.

How will I make new friends and meet new people?

We are aware that a really important part of your student experience is to meet new people and make new friends. We are confident that students coming to Manchester will have a positive student experience and make friends whether you are joining us in person, or online at first. Your academic School, our Res Life team (accommodation service), and Students’ Union are working hard to create events so that you can network and make friends.

Will I be able to mix with students on other courses?

Yes, you will. We are not planning to implement subject specific bubbles at Manchester and we will aim to maximise opportunities for new students to meet and interact with students from outside of their discipline area wherever possible.

Will student clubs and societies still be running?

Whether you are with us on campus or joining us remotely at first, we want to make sure you have an enjoyable student experience. Whatever your interests are outside of classes, there will be a club or society that’s looking forward to welcoming you wherever you are in the world - on campus or at home. Information on clubs and societies that you may be interested in can be found on our Students’ Union website.

Our extended and enhanced period of induction, welcome and development activities is being developed in partnership with our Students’ Union and will provide an exciting introduction to our student experience here at Manchester.

We will be communicating further information on planned activities to offer holders as soon as they are available.

Will I be able to play sport?

The availability of team and individual sport activities is dependent on guidance by the UK government.

Universities across the country are working with British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) to outline a safe and sensible set of guidelines for a return to team sports.

Currently in the UK all sport centres (gyms and swimming pools) are closed. The process to reopen these will be informed by government and scientific guidance. As soon as we are allowed to open our sport centres we will do so, ensuring students and staff are fully briefed with regard to using these facilities safely, adhering to any government guidance.

Will the Students’ Union/Hall of Residence bars/social spaces be open?

Currently, all bars in the UK are closed but as these restrictions are reviewed we will plan to open our bars in the Students’ Union/Halls of Residence ensuring that they operate in line with the Government’s safety guidelines.

We aim to ensure that there are social spaces open in Halls of Residence and around campus following social distancing guidelines. Your safety is our priority and we are working hard to make campus safe and open it up as much as we are able to in line with UK Government guidance.

Will I have access to science/technology laboratories/facilities?

Students will still have safe face-to-face contact with our world-leading academics through seminars, tutorials, practicals and other teaching activities on campus.

We hope that students will be able to access the science and technology laboratories and facilities following any social distancing guidelines; exactly how this works will depend on UK government advice.

Until this advice allows us to be on campus we'll provide face-to-face teaching activities in a digital format; students’ contact time and ability to discuss and debate with their lecturers will remain the same, whatever our mode of delivery.

Will the Library be open?

In accordance with current government guidance, our library buildings and spaces are currently closed to students and staff.

However the Library has migrated as many of its services as possible to its digital platforms and is working hard to create more in the coming months. Manchester has the largest eBook collections in the UK that are accessible by students and Library staff are online and here to help students.

We hope to be able to open up our library buildings and spaces as soon as we are able to in a safe way following UK government guidance.