Key Information

Student and member of staff on a UCLan Open Day

Your first few weeks at university are an exciting time, but there can be a lot to take in. You’ll already be aware of important information about your enrolment and course, but there are plenty of other things which you’ll want to know about when you start. The good news is, it’s never too early to start familiarising yourself with UCLan life.

Campus Life & COVID-19

In your first week you will get a warm welcome from our Students’ Union, Student Services and Academic teams. There will be activities such as group meals, themed party nights, quizzes, karaoke, and the chance to meet representatives of our clubs and societies and sign up.

Campus will initially be quieter than usual, as we will carefully manage timetabling to restrict numbers of people on campus, with first year students having the most campus time. This is to help you to get around easily and enjoy meeting new people while having space to maintain social distancing. We are keeping a close eye on Government advice and hope to open up the campus to more students and reduce social distancing measures as we move further into the year, whilst keeping safety as our top priority of course.

All of our facilities will be open as usual, and all buildings will be cleaned regularly throughout the day. There will also be hand sanitiser and cleaning wipes freely available in all buildings, for you to wipe your mouse, keyboard or desk in-between cleans. You can find out more about the safety measures in place in the ‘safety and hygiene’ section.

Food and drink

Our on-campus food and drink outlets will use Perspex screens to separate you from staff, and those making your food will wear masks and gloves. All outlets are open from 8am until 5pm (Source Bar open until midnight). Options include:

  • Source Bar is your Students' Union bar and serves food every day, from brunch to burgers, pizzas to topped fries. Or why not pop in for a drink with a wide variety of cocktails, mocktails and more on offer.
  • In the Students’ Union Atrium, you'll be able to treat yourself to a Starbucks and a selection of sandwiches, soup and hot food – first floor of the Students’ Union building on Fylde Road.


The Students’ Union Shop is open all day every day and sells a range of food-to-go, essentials and UCLan hoodies and merchandise. The shop also has a Zero Waste area which sells whole-foods and other eco-friendly products completely waste-free. You can find the Union Shop at the front of the Students' Union building on Fylde Road.

Gym and fitness

All students benefit from a free membership to Sir Tom Finney Sports centre, and access to the gym and all classes. You also have access to UCLan Sports Arena and running track, located just outside the city centre.

Sir Tom Finney holds classes throughout the day, like Zumba, Aerobics, Yoga and Circuit Training. To maintain social distancing and regular cleaning of the gym and class studios, you will need to book online either to the gym or attend a class.

Pre-school Centre

UCLan has its own pre-school on campus and this is open from 14 September.  If you are interested in a place for your child, you will need to apply. Find out more online.

There are many great reasons to come to UCLan and we hope the information we are providing will give you some clarity and reassurance about the steps we are taking to ensure your safety when you come to one of our campuses in the UK. 

Although we are seeing a reduction in new infections in the UK, Covid-19 is still with us.  Therefore, it is important that we put safety measures in place and everyone at UCLan plays their part to reduce the spread of the virus.

All UCLan students have full access to the National Health Service should they feel unwell at any time during their period of study. We also have a Medical Centre and Pharmacy on the Preston campus if you feel unwell.

Authorities in Lancashire are continuing to work with colleagues in the NHS and Public Health England to do everything they can to eliminate Covid-19 and ensure the people of Lancashire are protected.

If you are new to the UK, you can find out what the government is doing to tackle coronavirus before you arrive.

We look forward to welcoming our new students and to helping them settle into University life. We have a pre-arrival online induction which is packed with lots of helpful information relating to what to bring, how to navigate Campus, how to access all our services and lots more. For some of our new students, staying in our Halls of Residence is a big part of their experience and a great place to meet new friends so why not take a look at one of our virtual accommodation tours so you can start booking your accommodation.

Making new friends

We know how important ‘Welcome’ is for our students. We’re aiming to give you a fantastic start at university, where you can make friends and join clubs and societies, whilst staying safe. We’ll do this by managing numbers on campus throughout the day, adopting new one-way systems in buildings, and using our outdoor space, as we often do, for market stalls, social events and sports. We don’t know yet whether the clubs will be open in Preston in September, but all shops, cinemas and many bars and restaurants are now open and operating social distancing to allow you to have fun and still stay safe. Many local bars and cafes also have outside spaces, where you can get take-aways and offer places to relax with new friends.

Starting University is a very exciting time and, working with the Students' Union, we are developing a series of face to face and virtual events to assist you in making friends and to help you to enjoy the UCLan student experience. We will be using marquees to make the best use of our outdoor space and allow more people to social distance and meet face-to- face. We are planning a number of ‘ice breaker’ fun sessions.

Social Activities and Sport

We will be proving opportunities for social activities and sport as far as is possible which will be a mix of physical and online social experiences based on where you live and study. We plan to deliver popular events from previous years such as ‘Big Freshers Quiz’, where students can take part online wherever they are. Physical attendance at events will be carefully managed to ensure social distance is maintained.  We also want to work with city partners to deliver virtual club nights if the clubs are still not open. The University and Students’ Union will also work together to arrange a bigger social event later in the year when the guidance allows; to allow additional opportunity for students to celebrate and socialise.

Competitive sports fixtures will not take place until January 2021 but we’re developing a coach-led programme of preparation for clubs ahead of the season starting. We hope we will be able to plan some recreational and localised competitive sport subject to government guidance at the time.  A range of pop up sports and health and fitness activities are being planned, both digitally and physically. 

At UCLan we are proud of the ‘work ready’ graduates that we produce, and we know that for some courses work placements are a key part of your learning.  If providers are happy, all work placements that can be conducted within the context of social distancing will go ahead.

Things are improving rapidly in the UK week by week, and we will continue to review and to follow Government guidelines to provide you with a safe environment.

Student Life

STUDENT BLOG: How Heather applied for Student Finance.

“I remember when I was applying for student finance, a lot of people were worried about the process, but don’t worry it’s easier than it seems”

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STUDENT BLOG: Leah’s guide to budgeting as a student

“Ever since I started university, I have given myself a weekly allowance of money which I have to stick to. Here’s some of my tips to help you budget, so you’re not living off Pot Noodles for most of the semester.”

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STUDENT BLOG: Maria’s guide to making your uni room your ‘home from home’

“When you move in, it may look like an empty room with no character, but it’s easy to make it cosy and characterful.”

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STUDENT BLOG: Societies during COVID-19

“Despite missing out on training and events, the Cheer committee have worked really hard to keep the team’s morale up and everyone close, despite not being able to train like we normally would. Here’s how we’ve been keeping in touch…”

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STUDENT BLOG: Danielle’s guide to vegan eating in Preston

“A dietary requirement brings with it a lot of concerns – especially if you’re budgeting for the first time and want to know what your options are. I’ve put together this little vegan guide, so you can see what Preston has to offer!”

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STUDENT BLOG: Jess’s guide to exploring Preston

“There is no shame in admitting that Preston isn’t at the top of Trip Advisors UK destinations list. London, Edinburgh and Manchester might be full of places that you may have heard of but that doesn’t mean Preston is lacking. In fact, it simply means that Preston has even more off the beaten track places for you to explore”.

Read more >

STUDENT BLOG: Dominika’s experience of virtual gym classes!

“Using Zoom, we’re able to join in Zumba and Pilates classes from wherever we are in the world. The gym came up with this perfect idea within a week (of lockdown), giving us all some sort of normality back again with classes!”

Read more >

Good to Know

UCLan campus

University Terminology

You’ll have heard lots of new words since applying to university. Find out what they mean here.

Group of students walking on campus

Key Academic Dates

Important dates for your diary, including the start of term, results day and graduation.

Campus Signage

Getting Around Campus

Our compact city campus means that everything is within a short walking distance – find out where you need to be with our campus map.

Student looking at the UCLan website on a tablet

Know before you go

Student Minds have two guides that you can reach for when you need helpful tips for understanding university life.

Three students talking

Study Skills

Our WISER workshops can help you learn how to study and communicate more effectively.

Two people in a counselling session

Counselling Services

Whatever you need to talk to us about, our friendly and professional counselling staff are here to help – our free, confidential service is available to all students.

UCLan American Football Team

Sports at UCLan

Stay fit and healthy with a free membership to the state-of-the-art Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre. While UCLan Sports Arena provides facilities for a wide range of sports.

Student talking to Library staff member


Find out what funding you may be entitled to, and what additional funding is available as well as information and guidance about managing your money.

Group of students around a table

Job Opportunities

Need a bit of extra cash to help get you through? Our Students' Union Opportunities Centre can help with employability skills, as well as part-time work or volunteering experience.