Returning to Sheffield

Information about when to plan your safe return to Sheffield, access to campus and facilities, and information about rent in University owned or managed accommodation.

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Guidance on returning to Sheffield

In line with government guidance, the majority of courses will be delivered online until at least 17 May 2021. Do not travel to Sheffield and remain where you are currently living until your face-to-face teaching begins.

Some courses with a practical or practice-based element resumed face-to-face teaching from 8 March. If you are informed by your department that your face-to-face teaching is resuming, you are expected to attend where possible. 

Temporary delays in attending face-to-face teaching 

Some students may face difficulties in travelling to Sheffield in time for the start of your face-to-face teaching.

If you have been advised that some elements of practical teaching will resume, and you are facing delays, you will be able to continue your studies online temporarily until you are able to return. If you might be facing temporary delays in returning to Sheffield, inform your department.

If you cannot attend your face-to-face teaching

If you have been invited to return, but are not able to attend in Sheffield for the foreseeable future, apply for an exemption from in-person attendance request form as soon as possible.

Exemptions from in-person attendance will be granted for students who are extremely clinically vulnerable.

If you cannot travel to Sheffield due to local travel restrictions in your home country, you will be able to continue studying online until you are able to join us in Sheffield. You should keep your department informed if you are able to travel at a later date.

The UK has not banned students from any countries if they hold a Tier 4 or new student visa. Exemptions will not be granted due to UK travel restrictions. 

We also understand that you already may have travelled back to Sheffield. If this is the case, you should remain in Sheffield at this time. Please do not travel between your term-time and home address.

All postgraduate research students should work from home wherever possible, and continue to follow the existing guidance on accessing campus facilities.

At all times, please continue to follow the latest government guidelines on safety.

Covid-19 testing when you return to Sheffield

Every student is expected to book two tests at our Covid-19 Testing Centre upon returning to Sheffield. Then, if you’re regularly on campus, you should book two tests per week after that.

Get a home test

Free packs of rapid lateral flow tests can now be ordered to use at home. These can be used in combination with our test centre to meet the expectation of two tests per week. It is recommended that wherever possible you should undertake three supervised tests at our testing centre before transitioning to home testing to ensure you are confident in conducting the test. You can also access free packs of rapid lateral flow tests for home use if you’re living elsewhere in England.

Order testing kits

Clinical placements

Students undergoing clinical placements may be expected by their provider to demonstrate a negative test before undertaking their placement. In some cases a negative lateral flow test result will be sufficient and you should use your text message or email confirmation as evidence of this. In all cases you should follow the advice and guidance from your provider and contact your academic department if you have any questions or concerns.

Covid-19 testing when you return to Sheffield


International travel

If you have not yet been informed that face-to-face teaching on your course is resuming you should remain where you are and continue your studies online.

In addition to those on courses where face-to-face teaching resumed from 8 March, we recognise that there may be exceptional circumstances where students need to travel to Sheffield before face-to-face teaching is re-introduced, for example if you need a study space or a reliable internet connection to continue your studies.

If you are returning to Sheffield, check the Covid-19 entry requirements before travelling to the UK. Do not travel if you have symptoms of Covid-19, or if you are currently self-isolating.

Travel guidance for international students


Easter travel guidance

The government has shared updated travel guidance for the Easter break. The guidance strongly advises that you remain in your term time accommodation over the Easter break in order to minimise the transmission risk within the wider community. This applies particularly to international students, because international travel restrictions could change while you’re overseas.

You are permitted to return home once before 29 April, however if you choose to travel you should book two tests at our Covid-19 Testing Centre before travel, and as soon as possible upon returning to Sheffield. 

You should also book a test before returning to Sheffield, where community testing facilities are available. Find out if your local area has a community testing programme.

If you test positive, you are legally required to self-isolate for 10 days and should not travel.

Covid-19 testing when you return to Sheffield


Access to campus and facilities

At this time you should only access the University campus if you need to. For example:

  • if your course includes an element of face-to-face teaching
  • if you need a study space
  • if you need a reliable internet connection to continue your studies.

All postgraduate research students should work from home wherever possible, and continue to follow the existing guidance on accessing campus facilities.

For those who need to attend campus, the University will remain open. Study spaces on campus are available.

Covid-19 testing when you return to Sheffield

Every student is expected to book two tests at our Covid-19 Testing Centre upon returning to Sheffield. Then, if you’re regularly on campus, you should book two tests per week after that.

How to book a test at the University's Covid-19 Testing CentreStudents who are living in an area that offers the use of local community testing programmes should seek to get tested before their return, where this fits in with locally targeted programmes led by the Director of Public Health.


Rent in University owned or managed accommodation

Any students who are still unable to use their University owned or managed accommodation following the government's latest guidance will not be charged rent until 12 April 2021 at the earliest.

Guidance for students who are unable to return to their accommodation

Support – get in touch

Our extensive range of support services for students are all available online.