Before you arrive While you are here After you graduate. mature. Guide. for. Mature. students

While you are here e r u t a m s t n e d u st Before you arrive Guide for Mature Students After you graduate Before you arrive Hello 1 Explaini...
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While you are here

e r u t a m s t n e d u st

Before you arrive

Guide for

Mature Students

After you graduate

Before you arrive Hello 1 Explaining the System 2 Funding and Financial support 4 Bursaries and Scholarships 5 Childcare and dependant-related Funding 6 Courses and Entry Requirements 8 Partner Colleges 8 Flying Start 9 Accommodation 9

Before you arrive

Before you arrive



inking h t e ’r u o y t a th Great news ucation. d e o t g in n r about retu Well done on taking th e first step!

What Next? 10

Mature student?

While you are here

After you graduate

Returning to education when you are over 21 may seem daunting. However, don’t forget that being a little bit older brings with it other advantages and benefits. Your previous work and life experiences equip you with transferable skills; these are important, so don’t discount them! Maybe you’re skilled at planning your time, writing documents or have worked as part of a team. All of these provide valuable experience for lectures, tutorials, group work and working to deadlines.

You’re one of many 15 15 15 16 16 16

University of Central Lancashire #TheUCLanExperience


– UCAS definition

After you graduate

UCLan Alumni Association UCLan Careers Postgraduate Study and Research UCLan Connect Extra Benefits Keep in Touch

Mature students are anyone over the age of 21 who didn’t go to university after school or college. Some might have taken gap years to volunteer and travel the world, while 40% of mature students are over 30 and have had work, mortgage or family responsibilities.

While you are here

The 11 Academic Support 11 Study Skills Support 11 Information & IT Skills 12 Peer Mentoring Support 12 Academic Advisers 12 Multi-Faith Centre 12 Care Leavers Support 12 Counselling 12 Mental Health Support 13 Disability Support 13 Medical Centre 13 Dental Clinic 13 UCLan Sport and student sport clubs 13

Scared of feeling like one of the oldest? Afraid of walking into the lecture theatre and standing out? Worried that younger people know more than you?

Here at UCLan, around two-thirds of our students are over 21

when they start their degree. 1

Before you arrive

Don’t be put off by some of the terms used within the university environment – our guide below should help you get your head around the terminology used and understand the key words. Undergraduate


The first degree level at university. It is also used to refer to a student studying that first degree.

A unit of study within a degree scheme with its own learning goal. Each module has a credit weighting related to its weight within a degree scheme.

Foundation Degree A foundation degree allows students to study a subject at a lower level than honours degree but equivalent to HND (Higher National Diploma) standard without the year in work experience. Usually a two-year programme. Postgraduate

Entry Requirements Grade levels set by the university for entry onto a course. APL (Accreditation for Prior Learning) If students have a sufficient level of past learning – from experience or qualifications – we offer an Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) scheme. Term The academic year is divided into three terms. Semester

Admission This is the process by which you seek and gain entry to university, usually referring to the application stage that you must go through before you are officially accepted for a place on a degree course. Acceptance Acceptance is when you have been officially offered a place which you have in turn officially confirmed you have accepted. Enrolment For new students, ‘enrolment’ is the formal process of confirming your course details, accepting our rules and regulations and agreeing to pay tuition fees. Enrolment is usually done online before you arrive. Tuition Fees The amount set to be paid to a university for a course. All new students should be eligible for a loan to cover their fees subject to certain conditions.

Tom Daly, 24)

Nazira Qureshi, 33)

BA (Hons) Sports Development and Enterprise

BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science

“So, as a mature student I had such huge reservations about going initially. For example, would I feel out of place? Would I be too old? I was just coming from working in Washington DC so it was going to be a massive change regardless, but was it going to be a side-step rather than a progression? After about a week or so, my fears had gone. There were people older than me on the course and I settled in very quickly, and to make sure it wasn’t just a three-year gap I got involved in a number of volunteering opportunities around my course which led to some awesome opportunities abroad. I joined a sports club in a sport I’d never played before and ended up running it which earned me the role of an elected officer this year.

“As a mature student, first and foremost you need to get organised! Buy a diary. Never believe the hearsay amongst fellow students in all its innocence, go and find out anything study-related from the respective lecturers and the module handbook is the Holy Grail. Always check Blackboard for any advice or upcoming events that are available for mature students. Remember to work hard but enjoy the experience and stay sane if possible!”

My main piece of advice would be the cliché ‘make the most of it’ or ‘you will have friends for life’. You’ll hear the phrase ‘don’t worry, it’ll be fine’ all the time, which won’t help you at all. However, when you look back, you’ll realise just how true that is!”

After you graduate

For teaching purposes the academic year is divided into two semesters, each normally consisting of around 12 teaching weeks, plus a period of two or three weeks for examinations.

A module of 10 credits has about 100 hours of study associated with it. Full-time students must normally take modules worth 60 credits per semester, and a total of 120 credits in a year. A standard three-year honours degree requires 360 credits to be achieved.

students say?

UCAS The University and College Admissions Service which processes most applications to full-time undergraduate study in the UK.


While you are here

Level of study taken after obtaining an undergraduate degree (ie after graduation).


What do our

Before you arrive

Explaining the System


We also have additional financial support packages available for students from low income households and others in financial hardship, which are reviewed on an annual basis. More info on student finance, how to apply and what you’re entitled to can be found at

Before you arrive

Check out our Fees page too, for the latest info on course fees, scholarships and bursaries available The financial support that is available to you will vary slightly, depending on where you live. For more information check out: Resident in England 0845 300 5090 Resident in Wales 0845 602 8845 Resident in Northern Ireland 0845 600 0662 Resident in Scotland Resident in other EU country +44 141 243 3660

Deciding to embark on a university degree can be daunting and you may be left wondering how you will be able to afford to study. At UCLan we believe that a university education is an investment in your future. If you have the talent, ability and drive to study with us, we want to make sure you make the most of the opportunity, regardless of your financial circumstances. Find the support that’s right for you through our range of Bursaries and Scholarships. UCLan Financial Bursary This is financial support offered to new students from low income households. We provide the support in the form of cash payments, made across the academic year directly into students bank accounts. UCLan Excellence in Sport Scholarship We offer a range of sports scholarships aimed at supporting both individual and team performance. These scholarships are open to students applying to study on ANY full time UCLan undergraduate degree course. Care Leavers Bursary

NHS Bursaries A number of courses are funded by the Department of Health, with course tuition fees paid for by NHS student Bursaries. Students may also be entitled to maintenance grants for the NHS Student Bursary. However, there are government changes to funding and from 2017/18, new students on nursing, midwifery and AHP pre-registration courses (which lead on to qualification with one of the health professional regulators) in England will take out maintenance and tuition loans like other students rather than getting an NHS grant. View the latest information publications/nhs-bursary-reform/nhsbursary-reform Journalism Bursary The Royal Television Society is offering bursaries of £3,000 (£1,000 per year) to support UK students studying full-time accredited degree courses in either television production or broadcast journalism. Applicants must have a household income of no more than £25,000 and must be “home” full-time undergraduate students; applicants from the EU and abroad are not eligible.

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After you graduate

Students who may need a little extra assistance, because they are from care or estranged from their parents can apply for the Care Leaver Bursary, worth £1,000* per year. Students can apply from September for that academic year. The Bursary is paid in 4 equal instalments.

While you are here

Student funding has changed over the last few years so it’s a good idea to make sure you understand the current system and how it works. Remember if you’re a first time undergraduate you don’t need to pay upfront. The tuition fees that you see advertised are usually paid initially by the Government through the ‘tuition fee loan’, so you don’t have to save up beforehand. And the good news is that you only have to repay the loan once you are employed and earning enough, currently this stands at over £21,000. You can also apply for maintenance loans from the Government.

Bursaries and Scholarships

Before you arrive

Funding and Financial support

Before you arrive

ding dependant-related Fun


Adult Dependants Grant

We have a pre-school centre on campus which offers a high quality, professionally run nursery and welcomes children from aged six months – four years and can accommodate up to 90 children on both a part-time and full-time basis.

If you have an adult who depends on you financially, you could be eligible for up to £2,757 a year. The amount you’re eligible for depends on your income and the income of your dependants. It does not have to be repaid.

Telephone: 01772 892597 or email: [email protected] for more details.

Child Tax Credit

Childcare Grant You could get up to 85% of your childcare costs paid for, if you are a full-time higher education student with a child or children under 15 (17 if they have special educational needs). This does not need to be repaid. Parents’ Learning Allowance If you have dependent children, you can apply for help with course-related costs such as books, study materials and travel. What you’re eligible for depends on your household income, but could be up to £1,500 and does not have to be repaid.

If you have dependent children, you can claim Child Tax Credit or the child element of Universal Credit. Any student loans and grants you get to meet the costs of tuition fees, childcare and other course-related costs aren’t taken into account when HMRC works out what Child Tax Credits or child element of Universal Credit you can get. Find out more from the HM Revenue and Customs helpline on 0845 300 3900 or visit

students say? Anthony Szwonek, 37)

Jen Salt,41)

BSc (Hons) Animal Welfare and Behaviour

MSc Human Resource Management

“I’m married, with two boys so I’ve had to get used to juggling my family commitments with going back to education. I didn’t think I’d struggle but it was harder than I thought it would be. My first year at uni did prove to be a steep learning curve, because I needed to re-tune my brain to learn again. This took about four months. I also found that I was having to learn the basics of my course as well as the complex level 4 content, which added to the research time. The support that the tutors gave to compensate for this was remarkable. I did find that once I began to write a seven-day study timetable, which ranged from 8am until 10pm, and my family got used to my routine, it become easier. I found that giving myself one night in the week off my study to spend with my wife, and every Sunday afternoon off (depending on deadlines) to spend with the kids, that I became more focused.

“I decided I needed a career change and thought if I left it any later it would never happen. I’m loving my course and enjoying working with different people from a range of different backgrounds and cultures. The course is very time consuming and I don’t think I’ve ever done so much reading but I think it will all be worthwhile in the long-term. Deciding to go back to being a student was an easy decision for me as I need to create new opportunities for myself and my family. So far so good…… I have no regrets and I know it was the right decision.”


After you graduate

Now I’m close to finishing my second year I feel I have a reasonable balance, but sometimes life as a parent will throw the odd curve ball when you least expect it, which just has to be dealt with regardless of work, most tutors will respect this.”

While you are here

There is extra financial support available for students who are parents. This varies depending on where you live so make sure you find out what is available to you.

What do our

Before you arrive

Childcare and


Before you arrive

We encourage applications from mature students and consider a range of qualifications and work experience when assessing applications. Each of our university courses will have their own entry requirements and our Admissions staff will be able to tell you whether you meet these requirements. You can search our courses using our online Course Finder Don’t worry if you’ve been out of education for a while or if your qualifications do not meet the current admission requirements for direct entry on to an undergraduate honours degree programme, we also offer Foundation Entry degree programmes. We have a range of over 200 Foundation Entry degree courses designed for students who have the ability to study for a degree, but don’t have the necessary formal qualifications to enter directly on to their chosen honours degree programme. Applications are made through the Universities and Colleges Application Service (UCAS) as normal, and can be made at any time of year.

Through our extensive partnership network of Further Education colleges and specialist institutions, we offer around 200 courses each year to approximately 4,500 students in the UK. This means you can enjoy the benefits of a large university with over 30 years of collaborative experience, plus all the advantages of our partners’ smaller communities. Study on your doorstep Being able to study locally can be more convenient for travel and more economical. And as many of our courses are flexible, you can study full or part-time and fit your course in with your lifestyle.

You’ll find a wide range of higher education courses on offer through the UCLan partnership network - from Certificates, Foundation Entry programmes, HNDs and Foundation degrees to full honours degrees - there are courses to suit everyone. Some partnership courses enable you to begin your studies within a partner institution and complete them at UCLan, while others are delivered entirely by our partners.


Blackburn College Burnley College Carlisle College Furness College Futureworks Grwp Llandrillo Menai Hugh Baird College Kendal College Lakes College West Cumbria Lancaster and Morecambe College Myerscough College Preston’s College Runshaw College Southport College SSR St. Helens College St. Mary’s College Stockport College VSM Europe West Lancashire College Wigan and Leigh College Wirral Metropolitan College For more information on becoming a UCLan partner student, please see our website

You’ll get the chance to work with a team of second and third year experienced students who are trained especially to help you, and it’s the perfect opportunity to find your way around campus, meet students and make new friends. We’ll tell you about the fantastic services UCLan has to offer, opportunities available for all students, and where to go for help and support if you need it. Many mature students choose to attend one of our non-residential events in September, just before the start of their course. For more information, email us at: [email protected]

Accommodation Many local students choose to live at home whilst they study so they can save money, or because of family commitments. However, some mature students do choose to live on campus and the University of Central Lancashire provides a variety of accommodation, with over 2000 rooms in our Halls of Residence. Student accommodation may well be your first time living independently and we offer you a welcoming environment so that you instantly feel at home. Living with us is so much more than just a room. It is a fantastic opportunity to meet new people, make lifelong friendships and participate in social events throughout the year. We understand that if you are returning to study you may not want to live in halls. If you wish to live in one of our leased halls we will try to arrange this for you. You can apply online selecting your preferences as appropriate.

After you graduate

On course for your future

UCLan Partners:

We know many people feel nervous about starting university and, as a mature student, you might be concerned about how you will fit in, and how you will manage all your commitments once you start. Flying Start offers you the opportunity to experience university life before starting your course and is designed to give you the skills you need to succeed. Our free non-residential events are ideal if you live nearby or have commitments preventing you from staying overnight.

While you are here

Partner Colleges

Flying Start

Before you arrive

irements Courses and Entry Requ

If for any reason you would prefer off campus private registered accommodation, you can complete a University Private Accommodation form. Find out more about the various types of accommodation we offer, location and prices at


Before you arrive

What Next?

We know mature students often worry that they don’t have the required qualifications to gain entry onto one of our courses. Don’t be phased by this as we will take your skills and experience into consideration in place of the normal entry requirements. For students with a sufficient level of past learning – from experience or qualifications – we offer an Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) scheme. This enables you to receive recognition and formal credit for learning acquired in the past, through formal study, work, and other life experiences. For an informal chat or to discuss your options, please call 01772 892400. If you need any help during the application process, including how to write your personal statement, you can get in touch with our Admissions Team by emailing [email protected] or calling 01772 892444 or you can visit Campus Tours Why not book onto one of our Campus Tour Extra afternoons? Running every Wednesday on the Preston Campus from 1.30pm these are the ideal opportunity to to talk to our expert staff from Admissions or Accommodation, chat to a subject-specific tutor and ask any of those burning questions. Book online

While you are here When you become a UCLan student, there are a number of support services available to you. The

Study Skills Support

The is our acclaimed one-stop Student Information Centre where students can seek help on a range of queries. We provide help on all aspects of University life, via face-toface, via email, via our website or through our Twitter and Facebook pages. Find us on the Ground Floor of the Library.

WISER gives academic support to all students enrolled on our University courses, and if it’s been a while since you had to tackle assignments then we have sessions to help. We help students in all subject areas, both undergraduates and postgraduates, through weekly skills workshops and online self-access study skills.

Telephone: 01772 895000, email: [email protected] Academic Support

Our Open Days are a great opportunity to spend the day on our Preston Campus and get a feel for what it’s really like to study here and find out everything you need to know about returning to study. Find all our Open Day dates online You can book your place online too – and don’t forget to check the programme as we also run dedicated talks for mature students.

Six CAS Hubs conveniently located across the campus provide students with guidance and support for your course. We can signpost you to the person best qualified to deal with your query, whether that is another UCLan service, an academic member of staff or the Students’ Union. We can help with anything from enrolment and timetable enquiries to bursaries advice and module registration.

How to Apply Give our friendly course enquiry team a call on 01772 892400 or email [email protected] to find out more about returning to education. You can find all of our courses available by using our online course search

While you are here

Open Days

WISER lecturers give weekly writing workshops as well as maintain a Blackboard space and website in order to support you on your journey towards being an independent learner. We also can organise bespoke specialist workshops, in conjunction with your module tutors or course leaders. We have a lot of experience to share with you from years of lecturing, examining and teacher training, to our own experiences of undergraduate and postgraduate study.

If you’re looking to apply for a full-time UK course, you’ll need to apply through UCAS Part-time students apply direct to each university and college. The Universities and Colleges Application Service (UCAS) also has a section of their website aimed at mature students

After you graduate



Information & IT Skills

Multi-Faith Centre

Mental Health Support

Dental Clinic

Knowing how to find the best resources, eg books and journal articles, will help you understand your subject and get the best possible grades. Our online resources provide top tips on searching Discovery, literature searching and quick and easy referencing with RefWorks. We also offer IT Skills training to help you to make the most of technologies that support your studies and stand out from the crowd in a competitive marketplace.

If you belong to a religious faith, we can put you in touch with ministers, leaders and fellow members of your faith community. We offer advice and information about religious groups within the University, and places of worship in the Preston area.

Our Mental Health Advisers offer short-term support and advice to students experiencing mental health difficulties. We offer assessment appointments, advice and signposting to services to best meet a student’s needs.

Small groups meet regularly at the Centre, for worship and discussion, and we have a coffee lounge open every day during term where you can make yourself a hot drink, meet others and relax. There are also rooms for prayer, meditation, reading and quiet reflection.

Disability Support

The UCLan Dental Clinic is located on campus and provides dental care for students, staff and local residents. If you are moving on campus from outside of the area we advise you to register with a dentist when you come to Preston. You can telephone the NHS helpline on 0845 46 47 for the latest information and the name and address of your local dentist.

Want to know how to make the most of your UCLan experience? Sometimes the best person to ask is another student who has been exactly where you are right now. We can match you up with a fellow student (a mentor) who will meet up with you on a regular basis. These can be accessed through the Student Support Assistants in the based in the library. As well as advising on these issues, they can also offer general support and guidance. If you would like to know more please email us: [email protected] Academic Advisers At the start of your course you will be allocated an Academic Adviser (usually a member of the course team) who has responsibility for general academic advice and giving you help and guidance at particularly important times.


UCLan offers a range of support and services to help all students, but especially students who may need a little extra assistance, because they are from care or estranged from their parents. We have a dedicated Care Leaver Advisor, Hannah Small, who you can contact with any questions you may have, guide you through any aspect of University life, and refer you to the right people where appropriate. We can also make contact with your Social Worker and help with your pathway plan if you request this. If you would like to make an appointment to speak to your UCLan Care Leaver Advisor please email [email protected] or telephone 01772 892589.

Medical Centre We have a medical centre on campus which can help whether you are feeling ill, want family planning advice, are concerned about sexual health or need information on vaccinations for a trip abroad. If you are moving on campus from outside of the area we strongly recommend that you register with a doctor on your arrival in Preston and your NHS medical card would be helpful for this but not essential.

We pride ourselves in having a healthy campus so most of our students are eligible for a free Sports Membership. This will give you access to the fantastic facilities at both Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre and UCLan Sports Arena and is worth £170 a year! Get involved in fitness activities (gym and classes), sport (team games, racket sports, martial arts) and lots more. Through the Students’ Union you can also get involved in over 50 student sport clubs.

All our student support

can be found online at

Counselling Our team of professionally trained and experienced therapists offer a free, confidential service to all UCLan students. All our counsellors are registered with professional bodies and work to a set of ethical standards such as the BACP Ethical Framework, and are subject to their procedures for complaints and sanctions. After you graduate

You will find the name of your Academic Adviser in MYUCLan. Your Academic Adviser will usually be a member of staff associated with your course, who, in addition to your course/subject/year tutors, will advise you on your progress and issues such as option choices on your degree programme. Your Academic Adviser can provide you with guidance in academic matters, as well as information about where to go for any additional and specialist help and advice you might need. You will be allocated a named Academic Adviser for the duration of your course. Not sure who your Academic Adviser is? Your Campus Administration Service Hub (CAS Hub) or the will be able to help.

Care Leavers Support

UCLan Sport and student sport clubs

While you are here

While you are here

Peer Mentoring Support

Within UCLan we have a team of experienced Disability Advisers who are here to work with disabled students to ensure that you get the best support possible whilst studying here at UCLan. A range of support will be offered to suit individual needs as recommended in your Needs Assessment Report. We work with you and your tutors to devise appropriate examination and assessment arrangements throughout the duration of your course.

Whatever your difficulty you are welcome and will be treated with respect. The service is open throughout the year and can be accessed visiting the Student Support & Wellbeing reception in Foster Building 119 (First Floor), by telephone 01772 892572 or by completing the online appointment request.


What do our

While you are here

students say? ’

Alex Smith, 29)

Debbie O Connor, 51)

BSc (Hons) Healthcare Science

BA (Hons) International Business

“Returning to university as a mature student has provided me with a greater drive to succeed. It has given me the opportunity to embark on a career path as opposed to being stuck in a job with which I shared no passion.

“Being mature makes me more committed to study. Having worked full-time I know how to manage my time which is useful.

There have been times when I have felt under pressure, especially with exam and deadline dates looming, however the lecturers are friendly and approachable and have always provided support and guidance. No matter what you are faced with at university, perseverance is key and I guarantee you will be amazed at what you can achieve!”

Remember to talk to your peers and other students, you can learn an awful lot. It’s never too late to learn and make new friends. Being older doesn’t make you wiser but gives you a thirst to learn.”

After you graduate UCLan Alumni Association Once you graduate, you are automatically entitled to free lifelong membership of the Alumni Association which entitles you to access many University services and benefits.

UCLan Careers You can continue accessing support from the Careers team whenever you feel it will benefit you. As well as on-campus guidance appointments, drop-ins and mock interviews we offer support via telephone, skype and email. You can also access our online recruitment courses. If you are job hunting make sure you set up your job preferences on the Careers jobs portal, you can choose to receive regular job alerts and by following us on twitter you can keep up-to-date with events, workshops and career opportunities. It’s important for us to know what it’s like for new graduates and the kind of opportunities that are out there so keeping in touch with you about your experiences and your career progression allows us to give practical advice and current tips to other students. We always contact graduates in January to find out what you are doing and if you need any further help.

Postgraduate Study and Research Your Journey beyond Graduation Continue #TheUCLanExperience Once you’ve got your degree, you might want to weigh up your career options. Find your postgraduate inspiration and continue your journey with one of our numerous postgraduate and CPD courses on offer. Available full-time, part-time and by elearning. A postgraduate degree at UCLan can help you achieve your ambitions, whether that be enhancing your knowledge and skills in your degree subject or changing career direction in the future. And, don’t forget that as a UCLan graduate you may be entitled to a discount on postgraduate course fees. There’s also a new UK Government postgraduate loan scheme of up to £10,000* now available *conditions and eligibility criteria apply Loan details can be found: Find out more about postgraduate study:

After you graduate



UCLan Connect

Extra Benefits

Why not keep connected and join UCLan Connect. The platform allows you to re-connect with old friends as well as enabling you to utilise the skills and experience of other UCLan graduates.

As a graduate, you can continue to use our state-of the art facilities including the UCLan Library and the Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre (fee payable and conditions apply). You’ll also have access to the wide range of events we hold on campus each year.

Joining our alumni careers network allows you to keep in touch with your fellow graduates, giving you the opportunity to see how others have progressed and to network and find out more about possible opportunities.

To find out what’s coming up and to book a place at an event, visit whatson or see our alumni networking platform, UCLan Connect.

Find out more

After you graduate

Keep in Touch

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s e t o N t n a t r o p Im

Useful Contacts UCLan Course Enquiries 01772 892400 [email protected] UCLan Admissions 01772 892444 [email protected] UCLan Student Finance 01772 892583 [email protected] Student Finance England 0300 100 0607 Rachel Boydell, 47) BSc (Hons) Healthcare Sciences

“Does uni inspire your mind? Yes, absolutely. It gives you a passion to aspire to greater things, nurtures your soul and allows you to partake in incredible opportunities.” The Times/UCAS Writing competition entrant, University of Central Lancashire

This leaflet was compiled in September 2016 and all reasonable care has been taken to ensure its accuracy. We cannot guarantee that all services will be available exactly as described; it may be necessary to vary the provision or availability. We hope that you are happy with your UCLan experience; if not we have a complaints procedure in place, please email: [email protected] or phone 01772 892400. 03587 09/16

Student Finance Wales 0300 200 4050 Student Finance Northern Ireland 0300 100 0077 Students Awards Agency for Scotland 0300 555 0505 Pre-school Centre 01772 892597 [email protected] Disability Services 01772 892593 [email protected] StudyAtUCLan