We have received a number of questions from offer-holders for our postgraduate programmes regarding the potential impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on their ability to study at the University of Bath. Many of the questions were similar. We have provided what guidance we can based on the best information we have available at the time of writing, and we will update this guidance in response to new information.

Will the course still start in September?

We are preparing for your arrival in September 2020. However, due to the rapidly evolving situation in the UK and elsewhere, it is not possible to know whether there will be any restrictions on travel to the UK in September 2020. We have taken many preventative measures to protect our community in the current climate, and we want to reassure you that we are preparing to support future students through the coming year.

If there are restrictions on travel to the UK will the course be taught online instead?

We are hopeful that you will be able to start your course on campus as planned in September 2020, but we are preparing to deliver material online should that become necessary. We will continue to monitor the situation and will update this page and advise offer-holders of any changes to our plans.

Are there any safety measures we have to comply with?

If you are already in the UK, we would recommend you keep up to date on the latest UK Government advice and regulations and NHS information on coronavirus.

My university/school/college has been closed, and this may delay my graduation. Will this be a problem?

Any delays in our receipt of your results would delay our ability to make your offer unconditional and issue you with a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) (if necessary). We are not currently aware of any delays in any country that would stop your arrival in Bath in time for the start of your course, but this is a rapidly evolving situation. We continue to monitor the situation for the latest information, and you are advised to tell us if you anticipate any delays in the availability of your results.

My local IELTS testing centre is closed. What do I do now?

Available responses to the closure of your testing centre will vary by location. In some areas, it may be possible to shift your examination to a different testing centre, but this will not always be possible. For example, the latest advice from the British Council is that IELTS centres in mainland China will be closed until the end of May 2020, but we also understand that these IELTS centres are planning to schedule extra exam sessions to satisfy demand when they reopen.

Our normal deadline for provision of English language test results is 31 July 2020. Our hope is that the measures in place will enable our offer-holders to meet this deadline. We should normally be able to offer an extension to this deadline, but you should be aware that any delays in providing English language results will mean that you will have less time to secure a tier 4 student visa (if required), and that an extension may not be possible for degrees that are full.

Does your university accept language tests other than IELTS?

We are now accepting a number of additional English language tests for 2020 entry, including TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition and Password for all postgraduate taught and research degrees. We are also accepting Duolingo and IELTS Indicator for entry onto postgraduate taught courses.

For 2020 entry, we will accept your qualification if it was taken within 30 months of the start of your course (previously 24 months).

See our further information on alternative tests for postgraduate programmes for details.

Does your university have any plans to conduct its own language testing as a replacement for IELTS (etc.)?

Our hope is that the shifting of test locations and the addition of test capacity will be sufficient to resolve the issue. That said, this is a dynamic situation, and we are searching for alternatives in the event that testing centres open later than expected and/or with less capacity than required to meet demand. We will review our position if it appears that testing centres will not be able to meet the needs of our offer holders.

Will you delay the start dates of your pre-sessional English courses?

We are not planning to change the timing of our pre-sessional English programmes, given our expectation that qualifications will not be significantly delayed and that English language testing capacity will become available for offer-holders. If delays become inevitable, we will explore the possibility of exceptionally supporting students forced to begin their studies later than normal.

Our 20-week pre-sessional English programme started online on 20 April 2020. Both our 10-week and 5-week pre-sessional English programmes (PSE) will also be available as online courses. They will continue throughout the period 6 July–11 September to ensure a PSE route to postgraduate study.

PSE applicants can also now use test scores from any approved English language test to join the online PSE. All exams must have been taken within 30 months.

If the situation improves, we plan to additionally offer a face to face version of the 5-week programme in Bath on campus and allow some flexibility of movement between the online and face to face pathways. The design of our programmes are closely aligned to allow students to move between the versions without losing any teaching and learning time.

We will automatically transfer any existing offers to the online programme. More detailed information about the content and teaching of our programmes is available on our website.

For further information please visit our pre-sessional programme pages.

I am having problems paying my deposit for my PGT course before the reply deadline. Can I have an extension?

Wherever possible, we will extend the deadline for you to pay any required deposit and secure your place. Please note that this may not be possible if a course becomes full. Offer-holders would be well-advised to seek an extension before the date of any current deadline.

What happens if I can’t get a visa in time for the start of my course?

The University has historically allowed late arrivals for up to 2 weeks after the course start date, and this facility will remain available for the coming academic year. We will continue to monitor guidance from UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) as the situation develops and will keep you informed of any changes.

Can I defer my postgraduate taught place to the next academic year?

We hope this will not become necessary, but we would be happy to defer offers to postgraduate taught programmes to the next academic year if you are unable to study with us this year. You should get in touch with us at pgtadmissions@bath.ac.uk if you wish to discuss this.Please note that the conditions of your offer may change and fees in subsequent years are likely to be higher than this year.

Can I defer my postgraduate research place to the next academic year?

We hope this will not become necessary, but we would be happy to consider deferring your offer to a later date, if you are a doctoral applicant, or to the next academic year if you are unable to study with us this year. You should get in touch with us at doctoraladmissions@bath.ac.uk if you wish to discuss this. Please note that the conditions of your offer may change and fees in subsequent years are likely to be higher than this year.