Borders College

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Please note as Government advice is updated, and as our plans develop, the content within our FAQs will be amended to reflect the latest changes and would advise that you check back for updates regularly.

All College programmes will start online initially. Please do not attend Campus until a member of College staff contacts you to arrange this.

All communications will be sent to the email address you provided us with. Please check your emails regularly.

Have a question? Please email enquiries@borderscollege.ac.uk

Update on Covid-19, Wednesday 10th February

Scottish Government are due to make an announcement about colleges on 22nd February. Borders College will review the announcement and update you by email, College website and social media.

From 1st March the College hopes some students will get back on campus for specific activities.

These are:

1. Student 1-1 support (including IT), tutorial, guidance sessions and safe study places. This will be for students who are unable to access the support or study space they need at home.
2. Some practical and assessment sessions for final year students including Apprentices.
3. Outdoor learning sessions including Sport and Land based.

Any information on changes to your current timetable will come from your course tutor.

Please remember that you must not attend a Borders College campus until a member of College staff contacts you to arrange this.

This guidance may be subject to change depending on the latest government announcements.

Thank you again for your continued hard work in these extraordinary times. We understand the impact the ongoing COVID restrictions are having on everyone’s resilience and motivation. However, we want to reassure you that your safety is our priority. We look forward to the better times that are surely coming, and to seeing you all in person soon.

Help and Support
Support services continue to be available to all our students and we have provided some key links below which will enable you to access help and support in a number of areas;

Student portal (support and advice for all students)
MY Borders College – The Portal to your online resources
http://bit.ly/3oF9Rvf

Resources to support your mental health
Mental Health and Wellbeing – MY Borders College
http://bit.ly/38DptcY

Togetherall
http://togetherall.com

Make a referral for student support
(Benefits, Bereavement Support, Care-Experienced, Emotional/Personal Wellbeing, Financial, Housing issues, Mental Health, Physical Health, Student Carer) - Referral for Support and Advice
http://bit.ly/3qcr8wb

Information on how to access learning support
Learning Support – MY Borders College
http://bit.ly/3seVsIq

Advice and support on domestic abuse and gender-based violence
Domestic Abuse and Gender-Based Violence – MY Borders College
http://bit.ly/38zVN0s

IT helpdesk support -
ISLT Student Services
http://bit.ly/3oCKKsR

If you need any further support to access any of our college services, please contact the Students’ Association (bcsapresident@borderscollege.ac.uk)

The guidance around social distancing in schools is different to the guidance around social distancing in Colleges. If you are a school pupil, you must stick to the College guidance when in College.

  • Face coverings in enclosed spaces and communal areas
  • Avoid crowded places (one way system) (toilets and lift for 1 person only)
  • Clean your hands and surfaces regularly (prior to entering campus and toilets)
  • Two-metre distancing
  • Self-isolate if you have symptoms
 
Face coverings will be required to be worn in all public spaces by staff, students and visitors (with exemptions on medical and communication grounds) around campus which includes Corridors,Toilets, Library and Union and College/University managed Transport.
 
Non-compliance of FACTS above will be subject to the same protocols as those for smoking on campus.
 
Use of face coverings within Teaching environments will be based on Risk assessment with details provided to students as per departmental requirements.
 
Non-compliance in a situation that has been risk assessed as requiring Face Masks (PPE) will be treated more seriously and will be considered as a breach of the Health and Safety Regulations. Face Masks will be provided by the college.

 

We are following the latest Government Guidance available in order to keep students and staff safe. For the latest information please visit: https://www.gov.scot/coronavirus-covid-19/

We need to limit the number of people on a campus at any given time so we can stick to social distancing guidance. That means that at least some of your classes and learning will be off campus. You will be supported by a mixture of learning materials, project working, online lessons and tutorials. The type of learning activities will vary depending on your course.

Where you have practical classes, for example those that take place in kitchens, workshops, salons or labs, you will be on Campus but it is likely to be in smaller groups.  We may extend our Campus opening hours so that some classes could take place in the evening when the Campus is quieter. 

We are looking at how we can give students the chance to get work experience as an essential part of their course. If work experience is part of your course, we will work with placement providers to agree when and how you can safely go out onto work placement in line with the appropriate guidance. We are also looking at other ways for you to gain the skills required by employers until you can safely go to your work placement. We will share more information about the plans as they progress.

Have you checked your spam folder?

If you’re expecting an email from Borders College and you’ve not received anything please check your email SPAM Folder before getting in touch with us.

You should mark any emails from Borders College as ‘NOT SPAM’ to make sure you don’t miss out on important information.

 

If you are eligible for funding support, some financial help may be available to support you with childcare costs. This will give you the option to place your children into a nursery or with a registered childminder to let you study at home.

Your award will be based on your timetabled hours -but we know it’s not always possible to stick to these set times. This will allow you more flexibility to study around the everyday challenges that you will be facing during these difficult times.

If you are studying a further education course (SVQ, City & Guilds) you can request help with childcare costs when completing your online funding application. If you are studying a higher education course (HNC/HND) please contact the Student Funding Team at studentfunding@borderscollege.ac.uk.

Your course funding will start from the new start date for your course and continue as normal. 

You will be funded based on your communication with lecturers, participation in online learning and progression on the course, rather than your attendance in classes.

All Student Support services are looking at how they can support students well. Online support has been provided to students during and after lockdown, including access to learning support and counselling.

You will hear more about how to access these services in your induction. In the meantime, if you have any questions, you can contact us via email:

Public transport providers like First Bus and Scot Rail will be making sure they meet social distancing requirements. We will make a travel allowance available to you if we require you to attend a Campus and you are entitled to this funding support. This will allow you to choose how to travel to College. Where it is possible, we may change class start and finish times to help avoid the need for you to travel at busy times.

Advice on shielding is here - https://www.gov.scot/publications/covid-shielding/

Advice on Test and Protect is here – https://www.nhsinform.scot/campaigns/test-and-protect#:~:text=%20Test%20and%20Protect%20%201%20Test%20and,%20%20%20%20.%20It%E2%80%99s...%20More%20

The College is following this guidance and will support any student that needs to shield or self-isolate.

Where you can, you will be able to continue your learning or part of your learning off-campus. 

We will do everything we can to help you access computers and software that you need in order to learn at home.  We will support you if you need help to use a computer.

You can find information on what is recommended for your studies on the college website. Please click on this link: http://www.borderscollege.ac.uk/future-students/digital-devices-for-student-learning/

 

Our lecturers will make sure you get the best possible learning experience. It will be different to other years but we are working to make sure your course is of the highest quality. We will make sure, even when studying at home, your course is as interactive as possible. You will work online with other students so you don’t miss out on meeting your classmates.

The College is following Scottish Government guidance on arrangements for Test and Protect. At the moment this guidance doesn’t require routine college-based Covid-19 testing. If this guidance changes, testing will be put in place.  

In order to limit the number of people on campus at any one time, all courses are likely to have at least some off-campus learning.  College students always do some independent work for courses but this autumn there will more time where students study off-campus.  This could be through timetabled classes which are taught online, pre-recorded lessons, online tutorials, activities or projects.

Some full classes will be completely off-campus. If you are not able to get to a campus, for example you are self-isolating, your lecturer will support you to learn online.