Coping with Course Pressures

Studying for a degree is extremely challenging and many of you may find yourself facing academic difficulties during your time at University.

Whether you need to boost your study skills, want advice about what to do after University or you’re struggling with the demands of your course, we hope the following information will help you find the support you need.

How can I improve my study skills?

The 301 Student Skills and Development Centre provides a whole range of workshops and study skills sessions to help you reach your academic potential whilst at University.

Workshops include essay writing, exam technique and maths and statistics help, and you can get personalised study skills advice by booking a 1:1 study skills sessions. They also have lots of useful online resources which you may find helpful.

I think I have a disability (including dyslexia) that may affect my study, who should I speak to?

Whether you have already been diagnosed with a disability, or if you think you may have a disability but are yet to be diagnosed, the Disability and Dyslexia Support Service can offer you support. DDSS can assess your need for support and help you to arrange any special requirements that you may have for exams or your day-to-day study.

I am unsure what I want to do after I finish University. Where can I get careers advice?

The Careers Service have lots of different ways to help you decide on your path after University. As well as 1:1 appointments to discuss your options with a trained Careers Adviser, they also offer events and workshops to help you explore and a range of different careers, and opportunities to meet employers on campus.

For more information on all the opportunities available to you through the Careers Service, visit their website.

I’m nervous about starting my Year Abroad, what can I do?

It’s normal to feel nervous about starting a year abroad - moving to another country where you may or may not speak the language fluently is a big challenge! However, there are things you can do to prepare yourself.

Try contacting your department to express your concerns, as they may be able to provide you more information on what to expect and advise you further. It also may be worth talking to students in your department who have already completed a year abroad, as they may have some useful advice.

There are also lots of online blogs and resources that offer advice to students going on a year abroad. The University’s Global Opportunities webpages offer lots of practical advice for studying abroad, and the website Global Graduates is full of useful year abroad information, including city-guides, language tips and things to do before you set off.

What can I do if I’m finding my course more difficult than I expected?

Studying for a degree is challenging and lots of students will find things tough from time to time. Talk to your personal tutor about how you’re feeling - they may be able to offer some advice on how the course will progress and how you can manage your workload. If you do not wish to discuss things with you personal tutor, you can speak to someone from the Student Advice Centre.

If you think you may be on the wrong course and are considering changing programmes, you can find more information about how handle this on our webpages.

Who should I speak to if I want to raise an issue I have with my course?

If you have an issue with your course that you think may also affect other students (such as module allocation, feedback on assessments or accessibility of reading materials), you should speak to your Academic Rep. Academic Reps are students who are elected to represent your year group to the University department - every department has an Academic Rep for each year group. If you talk about your issue with your Academic Rep, they will be able to make sure it is officially raised with the department.

Details of your Academic Rep can be found on your department’s webpage or by emailing

What do I do if I am failing one of my modules?

It’s important to talk to someone as soon as you fall behind. Your lecturer, personal tutor or a member of staff in your department should be able to help.

What can I do about appealing a grade or degree classification?

If you are unhappy with a grade you have received or with your overall degree classification, you may appeal under certain conditions. Please see the Academic Appeals procedure or seek advice from the Student Advice Centre.

If the information you are looking for is not included in our web pages and you aren't sure who to approach, please come to SSiD and we will try to point you in the right direction.