Student Services News

News from the Student Services Centre (Carrington Building)

Month: May 2018 (Page 1 of 2)

Summer opening hours

The academic term is nearly over, but there will be plenty of services, support and facilities open for you to use over the summer vacation period…

Student Services reception: Monday – Thursday 9.00am-5.00pm and Fridays 9.00am-4.30pm.


Library: The Library building will be open 9am – 5pm and the URS building 8.30am – 5pm on weekdays during the vacation period and both will be closed on weekends. The only exceptions are:

• Saturdays 14 July, 18 August & 22 September the Library Building will be open 11:00 – 17:00
• Both buildings will be closed on the August bank holiday (27th).


Support Centres: Open Monday – Friday 9am – 4pm. You can find your Support Centre here.


Student Financial Support Team: The team do not provide a drop-in service outside of term time so recommend that students email on or telephone 0118 378 5555 to ask for an appointment to speak with a member of the team, or visit the money matters website.


Careers: The Careers Service is open as usual during the holidays:

• Monday, Tuesday Thursday 9am – 5pm
• Wednesday 10am – 5pm
• Friday 9am – 4.30pm
• From Monday 11 June until Friday 28 September there will be reduced Quick Query hours (11am – 12pm & 1pm – 2pm daily).


Catering: The cafes, bars and restaurants on campus are open at different times throughout the summer:

• Eat at The Square: Monday – Friday 7.30am – 3pm
• Park Eat: closed
• Dol.cHe Vita: Monday – Friday 8am – 6pm
• Café Libro: Monday – Friday 8.30am – 4pm
• Park House: Monday – Friday 4pm – 11.30pm
• Eat at SportsPark: Monday – Friday 8am-8pm. Saturday – Sunday 10am – 5pm
• The Dairy: Monday – Friday 10am – 1am. Saturday 12pm – 1am. Sunday 12pm – 10.30pm
• Henley Business School Café: Monday – Friday 8.30am – 4pm
• Eat at Enterprise: Monday – Friday 8.30am – 4pm.

You can find a full list of catering venue opening times here.


RUSU: The reception desk will remain open from Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm throughout the summer. Other RUSU facilities are open at various times:

Advice service: Drop-in sessions will be available on Monday (11am – 1.30pm), Wednesday (2pm – 4.30pm) and Thursday (11am – 1.30pm). – Appointments can still be made with Advisers by either contacting them via email ( or telephone (0118 378 4100)

Cafe Mondial: From the 11 June – 14 June, it will be open from 9.30am – 3.30pm. On the 15 & 16 June, it will be open from 8am – 4pm. After that, it will be open from Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3.30pm. Usual opening times resume from Thursday 20 September.

Mojo’s Bar & Kitchen: 11 June – 13 June, food service will be open from 12pm – 3.30pm. On the 14 of June, Mojo’s will be closed. From the 15 –  16 of June, food service will resume from 12pm – 3pm due to open days. After that, Mojo’s will be closed throughout the vacation period.


Study Abroad: Study Abroad are open throughout the summer Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm, with the exceptions of:

• Tuesday 10 July: closed due to staff training
• Monday 27 August: closed due to public holiday.


Accommodation: This service is open same hours as usual:

• Monday – Thursday 9am – 5pm, Friday 9am – 4.30pm
• Halls Hotline: The Halls Hotline is a 24/7 on-site service desk dedicated to responding to issues or concerns in halls accommodation. The Halls Hotline team are available seven days a week and 365 days a year. You can call the Halls Hotline by calling 0118 378 7777 or by dialling 7777 from any of the wall-mounted phones located around halls. You can also e-mail If we need to get back in touch with you for more information we will call the mobile number you provide us with.

International Advice: This service will continue to operate their online appointment and email enquiry systems. For further information, click here.


Summer term week 7 highlights

Find out what’s happening on campus this week…


Monday 28 May

Bank holiday!


Tuesday 29 May

Finalist career hacks: master your job hunt (careers workshop). 1pm.
Register your attendance here.

Ace your interview: learn the techniques (careers workshop). 5pm.
Sign up here.

RUSU Says Relax: Bubbles & Pudding. At the end of a long week revising, all you need is a little treat. Pop open a bottle and celebrate the end of a productive week with the many puddings on offer. 7pm-9.30pm. Mojo’s Bar.
Click here to find out more.

Reading Film Theatre – screening ‘Western’ (12A). 7.45pm-10pm. Palmer Building.
Purchase your tickets here.


Wednesday 30 May

Volunteering drop-in with RVA. 12pm-3pm.
Find out more here.

Psychometric tests workshop. Help with the numerical questions. 2pm-3pm. Knight 133.
Click here for more information.


Thursday 31 May

Reading Film Theatre – screening ‘I Got Life!’ (Aurore) (15). 8pm-10pm. Palmer Building.
Purchase your tickets here.


Friday 1 June

RED Award completion session. 1pm.
Sign up here.

Choral Evensong. Join the University of Reading Chamber Choir for choral evensong at one of Reading’s most beautiful churches. Directed by Patrick Barrett, this is an evensong not to be missed. Admission free. No booking required. 6pm. Earley St Peters Church.
Find out more.


Master’s with the Graduate Institute of International Development, Agriculture and Economics (GIIDAE)

Thinking about doing a Masters and interested in a career that can really make a difference?

Do you want to tackle some of the world’s most challenging issues of the 21st century:

  • Food security
  • Food production and health
  • Sustainability of agro-ecosystems
  • Climate change
  • Poverty alleviation
  • Social development
  • International development
  • International policy
  • Consumer behaviour and choice

If so, the Graduate Institute of International Development, Agriculture and Economics (GIIDAE) can help you as we offer a variety of programmes that give you the skills to be a part of the global initiative that is addressing such issues, and we now have a dedicated Scholarship for Reading’s alumni, designed specifically to assist those who would like to continue their postgraduate studies in GIIDAE, here at Reading.

The funding is available to master’s students in the 2018-19 academic year. In addition, as an alumni of the University of Reading you will also have access to a 10% tuition fee discount, which could help further fund your studies, as the two can be combined.

Find out more about our scholarship by following this link:

Teaching and Learning Strategy: Educating for 21st Century Lives

“There’s never been a project of this scale where the University has said let’s build our curriculums from the ground up to try and ensure they have all these things and equip graduates with these qualities.” ~ Ed White

You can be forgiven for hearing the word ‘strategy’ and wanting to hide under the table, but since the recent launch of the University of Reading’s Teaching and Learning Strategy 2018-2021, The Reading Rep speaks to RUSU Education Officer, Ed White who has worked on the project and explains in simple terms; “the most exciting part of this strategy is the commitment to deliver academic excellence through the new curriculum framework”. The University will be working in partnership with students to deliver this and also has an aim to offer an outstanding student learning experience. Read on to find out more about the Universities priorities over the next three years…

RR: What is the T&L strategy?
ED: The T&L strategy from now until 2021, which has recently been approved, sets out the Universities ambition and strategy for how teaching and learning should be over the next three years.

RR: How did RUSU get involved? What has been your input?
ED: So our input has been trying to make sure the strategy focuses on things which students care about and ensuring that in the right places, there’s the right focus and ambition. So particularly, one of the things that RUSU are really passionate about is to make sure the University provides the very best curricular and co-curricular opportunities. Initially the word ‘cocurricular’ wasn’t in the strategy. The University talks a lot about employment and creating employable graduates, so as part of that, I thought this word should be in there because actually ensuring that students have the opportunity to engage in societies, clubs and things beyond the curriculum is really important. My involvement has been to work with the team to think of things from the student perspective that might have been missed and get them in there. If you look at the foreword right at the start of the strategy, it’s about the University’s intention to work closely with the Students’ Union and Student Association over in Malaysia, because that’s one of the key, core things the University should always be doing and if you look at the past year we’ve been in office, we’ve achieved so much in the last year and we want that very much to remain and strengthen over the new few years. And partnership is key to this.

RR: What are the Universities priorities over the next few years with T&L?
ED: The two priorities are, one, to deliver academic excellence through the curriculum framework. So the curriculum framework is reviewing curriculums across the University to do lots of exciting things for students so there’s lots of sub-themes within that, but broadly the University wants to develop academic excellence. They also want to offer an outstanding student learning experience.

RR: What do you think of the new curriculum framework and how might it look in practice?
ED: Broadly the curriculum framework is completely redesigning the way we look at curriculums and ensuring that they’re aligned with exactly what we want students to graduate with. The curriculum therefore should be diverse, inclusive, research-based, contextual, discipline-based, global, inspiring, collaborative, authentic, challenging, innovative and coherent. Therefore, the attributes we want a graduate to have are mastery of their discipline, skill in researched inquiry, global engagement and multicultural awareness, personal effectiveness and self-awareness. That’s what they’re trying to achieve, having a curriculum that has those things and looks like that. It’s something that’s never happened, there’s never been a project that the University has said let’s build our curriculums from the ground up to try and ensure they have all these things and equip graduates with those qualities.

RR: Any challenges you foresee with the strategy?
ED: I think the challenge I see is on point two in offering the outstanding student learning experience because some of the subpoints within the strategy will depend on some of the facilities the University has. They’re doing a lot of work over the next few years, obviously the library will be back in action, a lot of the lecture rooms will have been refurbished, they’ll have the new standardised audio visual projectors across the campus, so they’re definitely going to help achieve some of the things that the University wants to. However, with growth in student numbers this could be a risk that may cause pressure and make it difficult to provide things the strategy sets out. For example, they want to “update and invest in learning environments, systems and technologies to support our students and staff now and in the future” – they’re working on this but if there’s not resource or funding to do it quickly enough or if growth outstrips funding i.e. if the enablers ‘don’t enable’ then the strategy’s not going to come to fruition, so I worry somewhat about that. But the University is doing a lot and I’ve really enjoyed working on this project – I think it will be great for students!

Reflecting on my time at uni

Finalist student, Alexander, shares his thoughts on his time at university…



“I’m now in my final week of being a student, so I thought I would share some of my reflections on my three years as a student here…

• The three years has gone by scarily quickly! I have always aimed to make the most of my time here, through attending careers events and Life Tools Talks, nearly all of which I have found helpful in one way or another. I can still remember helpful ‘nuggets’ from events I attended a long time ago! In my 1st year I completed the RED Award, which felt like a good achievement and I have put it on my C.V. It was a useful experience, as it motivated me to get stuck in and gain more knowledge, understanding and skills. The good thing about RED award is that you can tailor it you and do it at your own pace.

My career plans have changed slightly since coming to university. I was unsure about what I wanted to do, but after a lot of thought, completing two careers modules, a placement, some networking, I have a much better idea. Uni is a good opportunity to think about and plan what you want to do next.

• It has been fantastic to meet a wide variety of people, from different backgrounds and walks of life. It doesn’t matter who you are, you will be accepted, as students at University are much more open-minded than they are at school! If you are finding it hard to settle in, or will be joining Reading Uni in September, check out the vast range of opportunities available here (including how to become a Student Communications Ambassador – which is the paid role myself and the other writers of this blog have).

• Hard work does pay off, but getting the work/life balance is important too. At uni my work ethic, determination and stamina have improved. At times it did feel like I was working almost non-stop (I’m sure you can all relate to that!), but on top of working hard I did have times when I played hard. I would sometimes get frustrated when my work/life balance wasn’t how I wanted it to be. I worked harder during my time at uni than I did at college and it has definitely reaped more rewards. I learnt to appreciate that getting the work/life balance is a challenge for everyone and will probably continue to be a challenge.

Confidence in my abilities has grown. I came to uni unsure how far I would get, but willing and determined to give it a go.

• I’ve really enjoyed the independence and getting to know a new area. I have enjoyed Reading so much that I’m hoping to stay. The transport links and being close to London are what I love about Reading.

I’ve loved studying on both campuses at Whiteknights and London Road. I think our campuses are a lot greener and more spacious than others… certainly compared to the ones I’ve visited. The Green Flag award has been well earned!

Support from the Disability Advisory Service, RUSU and the Careers Service have been very useful and helped me to relax and be more confident.

Are you in your final year? What have you enjoyed, learnt or discovered at uni? Leave a comment below. If you are leaving uni, good luck for the future and if you’re staying at uni good luck for the rest of your course!”

RUSU Partnership in Teaching & Learning Showcase

The RUSU Partnership in Teaching & Learning Showcase was held on Tuesday 24 April, in the Meadow Suite on Whiteknights Campus, to celebrate the winners of the RUSU Excellence Awards.

This annual event aims to highlight the importance of collaboration and further encourage student-staff educational partnership to promote positive teaching and learning experiences. It also provides an opportunity for staff who have been recognised by students in the RUSU Excellence Awards to share best practice with colleagues from across the institution.

The RUSU Excellence Awards invite students to nominate members of staff who they believe have gone above and beyond expectations to improve their teaching and learning experience. The outstanding work of Course and School Reps is also recognised, through the School and Course Rep Awards.


Award Winners 2018

We are pleased to announce the 2018 winners as follows:

Teaching Excellence (Arts, Humanities and Social Science) Dr Laura Bennett
Teaching Excellence (Science) Dr Hilary Geoghegan
Teaching Excellence (Life Science) Dr Darren Juniper
Teaching Excellence (Henley Business School) Dr Nigel Spinks
Personal Tutor Excellence Dr Chris Jones
Support Staff Excellence Jenny Berger
Diverse and Inclusive Teaching Excellence Dr Madeleine Davies
Graduate Teaching Assistant Excellence Emma (Wenyi) Sun
Course Rep of the Year 2018 Abdullah Al Wahaibi
Ryan Morris
Emma Johnson
Emma Holden-Maillard
School Rep of the Year 2018 Kyle Smith
Outstanding Contribution to the Student Experience Diane Gerrard
Long term commitment to Academic Representation Thomas Lee


Get involved – nominate a member of staff for 2019

All students are welcome to nominate a member of staff for the RUSU Excellence Awards. If you would like to recognise someone who you believe has enhanced your teaching and learning experience, nominations for 2019 will open on Monday 17 September 2018. Visit RUSU’s website for more information.

Summer term week 6 highlights

Take a look at what’s happening on campus this week…

Monday 21 May


Tuesday 22 May

Comedy Central Live ft. Chris Betts. 7.30pm. Mojo’s Bar.
Book you tickets here.

Reading Film Theatre – screening ‘Custody (Jusqu’ la garde) (15). 8pm-10pm. Palmer Building.
Purchase your tickets today


Wednesday 23 May

General revision workshop. 2pm-3pm. Knight building (behind Palmer).
Find out more here.

Application essentials: CVs, covering letters, application forms (careers workshop). 1pm-2.30pm.
Sign up here.


Thursday 24 May

Wolfenden Seminar – Section 28: Context, impact and resistance. A discussion panel featuring Rosemary Auchmuty, Eve Featherstone, Deb Heighes, and Booan Temple, reflecting on the political and social contexts in which the legislation was proposed and passed, its impact on individuals, families and organisations, and the strategies developed for protest and resistance. 4pm-5.30pm. G15 Henley Business School.
Find out more and register your place here.

Wolfenden Lecture – Section 28: A poisonous law and legacy. Join us, on the 30th anniversary of the enactment of Section 28 of the Local Government Act 1988 (in England, Wales and Scotland), when Peter Tatchell, internationally renowned LGBT+ and human rights activist, will be speaking about, “Section 28: A Poisonous Law and Legacy”. 7pm (doors open at 6.30pm). G11 Henley Business School.
Register your attendance here.

Reading Film Theatre – screening ‘Funny Cow’ (15). 8pm-10pm. Palmer Building.
Purchase your tickets here.


Friday 25 May

RUSU Says Relax – Open mic night. 7pm. Mojo’s bar.
Click here for more details.

Festival Friday. 9pm. RUSU building.
Find out more here.

Volunteer at the Harris Garden

Whether you’re still revising or have finished your exams, some well-deserved fresh air in the Harris Garden is the perfect way to relax!

The Friends of the Harris Garden want your help as a student volunteer to prepare for the full swing of summer.
The garden is a beautiful asset to the Whiteknights campus, and relies heavily on volunteers.

Whether you are an experienced gardener or not, there are tasks to suit everybody. On Thursday 24th May, we are holding a student volunteers morning and
would appreciate you coming along!

Meet at the garden entrance for 9:30am, tea and cake will be provided.

If you would like to join us please complete the form here:
If you have any questions please email:

We look forward to seeing you!

Friends of the Harris Garden


Wellbeing during the exam period

The exam season is well underway and whilst some of you may be on the home straight to freedom from academic work for the year, it’s always important to look after yourself and make sure that you’re calm, relaxed and not stressed about your exams at all times.

It’s really important to listen to your body, be aware of yourself and tune in to how you’re feeling. In stressful times, such as taking exams, it can be easy to forget this and let emotions and anxiety build up, so make your time to relax as equally as important as your time to study.

The Life Tools programme is a great opportunity to learn more about yourself and be aware of how you’re doing. Life Tools is a programme of free talks given by a member of staff working in the Student Engagement team and other experienced professionals covering a wide range of topics such as procrastination, motivation and reducing stress. The aim of the programme is to increase your knowledge of key topics and learn practical skills to help you achieve your potential. Click here to find out more about the programme, or see the full programme of talks coming up soon.

Another great perk is that Life Tools forms part of the Student Training and Experience Programme (STEP) and counts towards the RED award.

There is also a Life Tools blog packed full of research and tips that you can access at any time.


If you would like find out more about Life Tools, please email or call 0118 378 4216.

Summer term week 5 highlights

Find out about what’s happening on campus this week…

Monday 14 May

Life Tools talk – getting a good night’s sleep. 2pm-3pm. Carrington room 101.
No need to sign up just come along.

Finalist career hacks: identify what you want (careers workshop). 1pm.
Find out more and sign up here.

RED Award completion session. 5pm.
Click here to sign up.


Tuesday 15 May

RUSU Mexican Night. 7pm-11.30pm. Mojo’s Bar.
Find out more here.

Reading Film Theatre – screening ‘120 BPM (Beats Per Minute) (15). 8pm-10pm. Palmer Building.
Purchase your tickets today.


Wednesday 16 May

RUSU Says Relax – reptile zoo. 1pm-4pm. Monterey Lounge.
Get more details here.

Integration: revision workshop. 2pm-3pm. Knight 133.
Find out more here.

Beginner’s Desktop EndNote workshop. 2pm-3pm. Knight 133
Click here for more information.

Life Tools talk – capturing confidence: learn strategies to do and feel better.
 3pm-4pm. Business School, room 101.
No need to sign up just come along.


Thursday 17 May

RUSU Says Relax – piggy day (micro pigs on campus!) 12pm-3pm. Palmer Quad.
Click here for more details.

Reading Film Theatre – screening ‘I, Tonya’. 8pm-10pm. Palmer Building.
Purchase your tickets today.


Friday 18 May

RUSU Graduation Ball 2018. 9pm-2am. Students’ Union.
Purchase your tickets here.

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