Student Services News

News from the Student Services Centre (Carrington Building)

Month: March 2017 (Page 1 of 2)

Signage changes to reflect building renaming

The external wayfinding signage and maps are being updated this week to reflect the renaming of three buildings at Whiteknights campus.

The updates are being made by the Estates and Facilities Office

These buildings are:

  • HumSS to Edith Morley
  • Systems Engineering to Polly Vacher
  • Food Biosciences to Harry Nursten

The work will be carried out by DMA Signs and should be completed by Tuesday 28 March.

More information on the renaming of the buildings can be found in our recent stories on HumSS 
and Food Biosciences/Systems Engineering.

Library refurbishment works until 10 April

Between 20 March – 10 April the following construction/internal work is expected to be carried out:

  • Re-cladding the outside: Work around the outside of the Library continues as our contractors focus on re-cladding the Library’s exterior. These works involve drilling and so may be noisy – details of alternative study space are available on the Library refurbishment project page.
  • Ground works: Ground works continue around the perimeter of the Library.
  • Internal works: Activity will continue around the staircase enclosed behind the white hoardings. Furniture from the 2nd and 4th floor reading rooms will start moving into the URS Building in phases after the end of term.

For details of alternative spaces and the latest project news, please visit our Library refurbishment project page:

Fees and hall payments to move online from 19 May

From 19 May 2017, the University will not be accepting cash payment for tuition and accommodation fees. 

This is in line with the University’s strategy on dealing with cash and to better safeguard students.

Paying fees in cash poses significant risks to the safety of students – by removing the option to pay in this way, the University safeguards its students against the risks associated with carrying large sums of cash around campus and the local surrounding area.

Tuition and accommodation fees can still be paid in the following ways:

  • Credit/Debit Card or Paypal: Payments can be made online on the University’s Finance webpage
  • Bank Transfer with Western Union (UK & International): Simple, low cost payments can be made online at
  • Bank-to-Bank Transfer: Please ensure that you quote your 8-digit student number (found on RISIS) and details of what is being paid on the payment reference or we will be unable to allocate your payment to your student account.
  • Our Bank details are:

Account name: University of Reading receipts account

Bank Name: Barclays Bank

Bank Address:  90-93 Broad Street, Reading, RG1 2AP

Sort Code: 20-71-03

Account Number: 10468509

IBAN: GB69 BARC 2071 0310 4685 09

Swift Code: BARCGB22

Both methods are secure and established ways of transferring money to the University.

  • Alternatively, payment by cheque (Sterling Only) can be accepted: Cheques need to be made payable to University of Reading and should include your 8-digit Student ID written on the reverse of the cheque.  From the 19th of May 2017 cheques should be sent to the University of Reading, Collections Department, Building LO27, London Road Campus, 4 Redlands Road, Reading RG1 5EX

The benefits to using the payment methods outlined above include:

  • Making a payment is easier, quicker, and more convenient
  • Online payments are easier to track-so it is easier for the University to help you should something go wrong.
  • Improving safety for students and staff-removes the risks associated with keeping large sums of cash on you as you travel around campus and beyond.
  • Helps the University move to a more modern way of working.

The University will update all information online shortly to reflect the changes ahead.


Whiteknights Cash Office closure

Currently it is planned that the Cash Office at Whiteknights House will be permanently closed on the 19th May 2017 (please note this date may be subject to change).

The Finance department are moving to the London Road Campus and there will be no Cash Office at the new premises

We will be making further information available with regards to any other cash handling that occurs within the University, in due course.

If you have any queries or questions, please contact the University finance team at



Our campus sports facilities

As exams approach, it’s worth remembering that a bit of exercise is a great way to calm stress and give yourself a bit of a break.

The University has a range of sports facilities and activities on campus, including a fitness studio, group exercise and a huge variety of halls, studios and pitches. You can book an activity, join as a member and find out more information on the SportsPark website.

Please note that St Joseph’s School facilities, on Redlands Road, are not available for University students to use or hire. The AstroTurf and hard courts are private property.

Exam timetables now available

The Exams Office has now released exam timetables for the summer term 2017.

Accessing your exam timetable

To view your personal exam timetable, visit the RISIS webportal and log in using your usual ITS username and password, followed by your RISIS security password.

Once logged in, click on the “Information” tab at the top of the page and then click on “Exam info”.

The Exams Office will contact you with the location of your exams nearer to the time.

If you have any difficulty accessing the RISIS portal or you have forgotten your security password, please contact the RISIS team by emailing

Exams guide – What you need to know

Once you have viewed your exam timetable, you will need to read the exams guide.

The guide covers important things like what you should and shouldn’t bring with you, rules about behaviour in exams, exam venues and what to do if you’re ill on the day.

Remember, you MUST NOT have a mobile phone or smart watch on your person during an exam. If you are caught with one in your pocket – even if it is switched off – it will be considered cheating and you will be at risk of getting a mark of zero for the exam.

If there are any errors on your exam timetable, please contact the Exams Office immediately by emailing

For more information, visit

Your feedback sparks University improvements

Last year, all members of the University community were invited to take part in the 2016 Travel Survey. We are now seeing the direct impact of your feedback, as improvements are planned to widen the path from the Friends Bridge to Meteorology.

The path on Whiteknights Campus is the location that most staff and students rated as suffering from overcrowding and pedestrian cyclists issues. These concerns are now being addressed!

What are the aims of the improvement?

  • To provide more space for pedestrians and cyclists
  • Ensure that cyclists and pedestrians can share the route safely

When will it take place?

Sustainability Services and Maintenance Services have arranged for these improvements to be made over the Easter break; the works at Meteorology are due to start Monday 27 March and are scheduled to be finished by Monday 24 April.

Read the full travel survey results report and summary

Look out for…

Further improvements to routes on Whiteknights Campus over the coming years – a draft for consultation should be available before the summer, so please share your views when this becomes available.


  • If you have any questions about the project or suggestions relating to sustainable travel please contact

New vending machines to accept cashless payment

Vending machines around campus will be upgraded this Easter following the appointment of a new vending machine provider.
Ideal Vending were recently awarded a contract to manage the vending provision across the University estate.
All existing vending machines will be replaced with brand new ones over the Easter vacation period. Up to 60% of the new machines will accept cashless payments as well as cash – all forms of cashless payment will be

Machines in the busiest areas will accept cashless payments

accepted with the exception of the Campus Card.

Cashless payments include:

  • Credit/Debit Cards
  • Apple Pay
  • Android Pay

Cashless payment will be available on all high-usage machines, including the SportsPark, Bridges Hall reception and Park Group reception.


As part of the relocation of study space from the Library into URS, old vending machines inside the Library building will be removed and their new replacements will move into the URS Building. All vending machines based in URS will accept cashless payments.







Looking after yourself during exams

When you’re in the midst of exam preparation, remembering to eat a good meal, exercise and relax may not be at the top of your to do list. In reality, they’re not only essential to your success, but most importantly, your health and wellbeing.

Our Counselling and Wellbeing team offer a series of Life Tools talks, giving you advice in a number of areas, such as getting a good night’s sleep or managing academic pressure. They also have useful leaflets on a range of exam-related issues that we’re all familiar with, from dealing with procrastination to managing anxiety.

Don’t be afraid to seek support

Whilst your friend may look completely calm about exams, on the inside they could be just as stressed as you! That’s why the University puts a lot of support in place to make sure you are happy and relaxed at this potentially anxious time. RUSU have a great general exams advice page, the chaplaincy can offer a supportive environment, and your Student Support Coordinators are on hand to offer guidance and support. And remember your personal tutor will be able to offer you advice about exams.

Here are a few more things to remember during exams…

Be mindful

Mindfulness means being aware of yourself, your surroundings, and experiencing the moment. Counselling and Wellbeing have a blog which explains this topic in more detail. Being mindful can make you happier, healthier and less anxious.


Practise mindfulness with some yoga! The SportsPark offers a variety of different classes. If you’re looking for something a bit more energetic, there’s also aerobics, spin, gym facilities, or even Zumba – great for boosting your mood too! If you’re not a fan of the gym, going for a walk around campus is a great way to recharge both physically and mentally.

Eat well

Whilst a late night takeaway may feel like the perfect way to top off a day of revision, it probably won’t feel great in the long run. Find out more about eating healthily during the exam season. The BBC Good Food website also has some excellent tips on keeping calm, collected and well-nourished during exams. If you’re revising on campus, remember there are lots of healthy snacks around to help keep you going – from Dol.cHe Vita’s cereal pots to Eat at the Square’s build your own salad.

Manage your time

Planning ahead is key to reducing your levels of stress during exams. Get out the colouring pens and make your own revision schedule – and remember to plan in a few breaks along the way! The Study Advice service has some fantastic tips on managing your time.

Library study space: relocation to URS

From Tuesday 18 April, all study space inside the Library will have moved into the URS Building.

This means that:

  • Moving study space from the Library to URS will provide a quieter environment for study.
  • It’s still close to the Library, so you won’t have to travel far for a quieter place to study.
  • The Course Collection will move into URS to enable easy access to essential materials.
  • Other resources will remain in the Library for borrowing as usual.
  • The majority of Library staff will move into URS, but there will still be staff in the Library to help out. Information Desks will be set up in each building.
  • Opening times for URS will be the same as the Library is now – URS will be open 24/6+ during term time (closed Saturday nights).
  • The Library will open for additional 24/6+ hours during the Easter vacation from Monday 3 – Tuesday 11 April for revision purposes. From Tuesday 18 April the Library will open from 9.00am – 10.00pm seven days per week during term time.
  • These arrangements will be in place until August 2018, at which point facilities will move back into the Library.

The move will take place during the Easter vacation.

Library Access

Study space inside the Library building will be available at a reduced capacity up until Tuesday 11 April. As part of the moving preparation, please note there will be no IT available in the Library building on Tuesday 11 April.

The Library will be closed over the University closure days at Easter (Wednesday 12 – Monday 17 April), with the Course Collection moving into URS during this time. The Library will also close for the weekend of Saturday 1 – Sunday 2 April, closing at 5.00pm on Friday 31 March.

The Library will open for additional 24/6+ hours during the Vacation from Monday 3 – Tuesday 11 April for revision purposes.  From Tuesday 18 April the Library building will open from 9.00am – 10.00pm seven days per week during term time.

Alternative study space

The Library refurbishment is a complex project – we’re doing everything we can to minimise disruption to you and your studies wherever possible.

Along with URS, there are many other spaces that can be used for quiet study, subject to teaching timetabling and departmental use.

  • See our list of alternative space for spaces available across our Whiteknights and London Road campuses. You may also find our live list of available PCS helpful in choosing where to study.
  • The Study@TOB2 is a new area created within the converted music practice rooms in TOB 2, Earley Gate. As RUSU’s sister building to The Study, it provides an additional 64 spaces for individual and group study, and includes a printer, full Wi-Fi and plenty of plugs for laptops.
  • Need to find a room quickly? The Free Room Finder lets you find rooms available for immediate use – simply choose the area of campus you wish to search in and let the finder do the rest.
  • All of the above is easily accessed via the Library Refurbishment project page:

Several of the spaces marked as available will be used for teaching and other departmental activities at certain times, so please be sure to treat each space with respect. Please read our Classroom Rules before using alternative study spaces.

Spaces within each building will be available on a first-come first-served basis; however, priority will be given to students wanting to use alternative study space within their subject-area building.

Further details

If you have any queries, please email

If you have a disability and have any concerns about using either the Library or URS Building facilities, please contact Matthew Holtby, Library Disability Co-ordinator.

Further information on the Library refurbishment project can be found at

Mindfulness – find out what it’s all about!

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