I am pleased to share the changes to this September’s induction, designed to ensure our welcome is as safe as possible for undergraduate and PGT students. Drawing on good practice across the sector and consultation with the Students’ Union and academic colleagues, we will deliver a induction process which supports the Bath Blend. This will help students engage with their discipline and department whether studying in Bath or from home, building a sense of ‘belonging’ which is critical to transition and success.

Key activities will include:

  • coordinated pre-arrival communications, practical tips, and clear information around what students should expect from University study in the Bath Blend
  • a detailed pre-learning module called "Student Welcome" which includes key elements of our COVID safety measures along with other key messages on available support services (accommodation, Library, Skills Centre, STV, Edge etc) to ensure students have the knowledge they need in the run up to the start of their course
  • students being made members of Microsoft Teams for both their course and, where appropriate, their accommodation block, to enable them to build networks and friendships before they arrive. These are being supported by lead peer mentors, student living ambassadors and freshers week captains
  • students being granted early access to e mail, on line library resources and tools such as the JISC discovery tool to improve their digital literacy prior to arriving
  • students being granted early access to Moodle, including an innovative cross faculty sustainability module, to encourage familiarity with both the VLE and this strategically important area of focus for the university
  • a socially-distanced phased arrival over 6 days rather than the traditional two
  • an accommodation based welcome talk which clearly explains the practicalities of living together in a COVID safe way
  • an on line “University life” session on the day after arrival, providing key safety messages, our responsibilities to our community, practical tips and introduction to the #NeverOK campaign
  • on line department welcome from Heads of Department or equivalent, as agreed within the department, allowing students to engage with their departments safely
  • limited amount of face to face departmental welcome activity, at a maximum of 4 hours to reflect a standard teaching week. This will be delivered in small groups in departmental GTA rooms, over two days to reduce footfall and will include content appropriate to each department
  • on line introductions to peer mentors
  • campus tours delivered either in person, or with a new video tour, as appropriate for each department
  • a COVID safe Freshers Week run by the SU

We are hopeful that this welcome will provide a rich experience, for students studying in Bath and from home, enabling opportunities for them to make friends and be introduced to many of the tools and platforms which will deliver our Bath Blend of learning. If you have any questions about these changes, please contact Catherine Bailey.

Central doctoral induction and guidance for departments/DTEs are coordinated by the Doctoral College; for further information, please contact the Doctoral Engagement Manager.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone across the university who will be welcoming our new students both to the campus and virtually in the weeks ahead. A smile or a kind virtual word is greatly welcomed by all our new students.

I want to end with a sincere thank you to all the staff and students who have dedicated considerable time and effort to planning and delivering this year's Welcome, working hard to ensure our new students have the safest and best possible start to their time at Bath.