Updated 6 January 2021
Returning to study in Lent 2021
The UK has officially moved into lockdown, and the Vice-Chancellor has published a message confirming the following:
- For undergraduate students and those on taught Masters programmes: there will be no in-person teaching at all for the entirety of Lent term (except for a limited number of courses).
- We must all work or study from home unless we are unable to do so.
- Postgraduate research students who need access to University facilities (e.g. labs, archives) will be able to do so under strict conditions. All other research students should work “from home”.
- If you are currently living in College/in Cambridge: you should remain in your accommodation. You should not move home.
I am not in Cambridge, what does this mean for my return?
- If you can continue your studies at a distance, you should not plan to return to Cambridge until the Government lifts its restrictions.
- Undergraduates and those on taught Masters programmes should not envisage returning until the end of February at the earliest.
- The College will not be charging rent to any students who are not able to return this term because of the Government restrictions (we will send clear details as soon as we can).
- If you are a research student needing to return to Cambridge to continue your research, then you may do so without permission, but you will need to have a negative test result and therefore no one should now plan to arrive in Cambridge until after COVID testing restarts (i.e. not before 11th January and preferably after 18th January). You should be aware that we have been told that access to facilities such as labs and libraries is likely to be more limited than previously.
- For all others, if you cannot study where you live, then you must contact your tutor to ask for permission return. You may not return until you have been given permission. This will only be granted if there is an exceptional need for your return.
- If you live overseas you should try to alter your travel arrangements to comply with this guidance. If you cannot do so, then contact your tutor and be aware that you must quarantine for 10 days on arrival back in College.
Self-isolation on return - for everyone
Everyone who returns to College, whether you are arriving from somewhere in the UK or abroad, will now be asked to self-isolate in your room for 10 days, or until you have had a negative COVID-19 test. Students returning from countries that do not have a travel corridor with the UK are subject to the UK national rules on quarantining, i.e. they must self-isolate for 10 days or until they have received a negative result from an official “test and release” facility. The University’s asymptomatic programme does not qualify for this.
Life in College under lockdown
You should be aware that under this new Government lockdown life in College will be significantly more restricted than it was in the in the partial lockdown last term:
- In order to ensure that we can maintain staffing levels our staff are working in teams, meaning that, for instance, catering is now entirely a take-away affair, and there will be reduced cleaning of kitchens and bathrooms.
- The bar remains closed, the gym and tennis court are closed; team sports are banned; household mixing is strictly illegal, study spaces may be limited, the library may need to close.
- No visitors to College are allowed.
- The lockdown means that you are only allowed to leave home (College) for a restricted number of reasons (e.g. once a day for exercise, to go to your official place of study (e.g. your lab), essential shopping, medical reasons).
Moving into Households
- We will be moving back to the accommodation guidelines followed early in Michaelmas term: all students will be re-assigned to their original household (based on shared facilities).
- Opting out will not be allowed until after the first round of asymptomatic testing has been completed at the earliest.
- Support bubbles will not be possible at this time.
- We expect all students to practise strict social distancing within their accommodation until then - no matter when they arrived back in College - this includes in kitchens.
- Face coverings must be worn at all times, in all indoor work or study settings.
Please check these pages and the University's COVID-19 resources for the latest information available.