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Student Support and Welfare [UG & PG]

Meet the Student Support and Welfare Team

The School of Physics Student Support and Welfare Team

Please contact us in confidence by e-mailing

Géraldine Garrabet - Student Support & Welfare Officer

Email Physics Support

Telephone number 0161 2754100


Helen Collins - Student Support & Welfare Administrator 

Email Physics Support

Telephone number 0161 2754100


Nina Fellows - Student Support & Welfare Administrative Assistant 

Email Physics Support

Telephone number 0161 2754100

It's good to talk…

There are a number of support services available to all students within the School of Physics and across the University.

During your time at University you may find yourself facing circumstances that could adversely affect your studies. Such circumstances may be academic but could also include mental or physical health problems, difficulties with your living arrangements or the social aspects of University life.

Whatever the issue may be, if you feel that you are facing any circumstances that may affect your academic performance, it is important that you speak to a member of staff so that we can ensure you receive the appropriate support. We have a dedicated Student Support Team within the Teaching and Learning Office (Bay A Lab, First Floor of Schuster Building) who are experienced with advising on such issues and pointing you in the right direction.  Please be assured that everything we discuss with you is in the strictest confidence. 

If you would like to book an appointment please email  Alternatively, you can drop into the office during opening times which are Monday to Friday from 9am till 12pm and 2pm till 4pm

If needed, the team can put you in touch with other support services such as The Counselling Service and The Disability Advisory and Support Service (DASS).

Should your problem be academic and your Personal Tutor is not available, please contact either your Academic Tutor or Year Tutor.

Year Tutors's

First Year: Dr Peter Mitchell (

Second Year: Dr Paul Campbell (

Third Year: Prof. Mike Birse (

Fourth Year: Dr Patrick Weltevrede (

For issues choosing the right programme and options, you should contact the Programme Director.

Specialist Support Services

Disability Advisory and Support Service (DASS)

DASS is based on the second floor of University Place and provides help and advice for students with specific learning difficulties, disabilities, sensory impairments, mental health difficulties and medical conditions.


The University of Manchester Counselling Service offers confidential help with any personal issues affecting work, self-esteem, relationships, sexuality, mental health and general well-being. We are accessible to all University of Manchester students and all members of staff.

Occupational Health  

The University of Manchester Occupational Health Service provides confidential services to protect the health of staff and students at work, in training and in study and assesses and advises on fitness for work, training and study to ensure that health issues are effectively managed.

Central Student Support Services

We offer support and advice on issues affecting your student life, with signposting and referral to more specialist services. If you're not sure where to go, we’re a good place to start.

Mitigating Circumstances

Online Mitigating Circumstances Form

The form can be completed by following this link HERE  

Supporting Documentation

Can either be submitted to the Teaching and Learning Office in person or via e-mail to 

If you do not submit supporting documentation as evidence to support your mitigating circumstances by the agreed deadline, they will NOT be accepted.

The Mitigating Circumstances online form should be completed by any student who experiences unpreventable or unforeseeable circumstances that could have a significant adverse effect on their academic performance either in progression to the following year or their final degree classification. Such requests will be considered by the School’s Mitigating Circumstances Committee.

Because of the importance of independent evidence, it is strongly recommended that you register with a local GP when you arrive in Manchester, even if you are an international student and plan to return home for treatment.

It is vitally important that you submit your application as early as possible, and it must be supported by evidence. Guidance on finding and registering with a GP can be found your My Manchester Wellbeing page  

We strongly recommend that you read through the following advice before submitting your form.

What are mitigating circumstances?

Grounds for mitigation are unpreventable or unforeseeable circumstances that could have, or did have, a significant adverse effect on the academic performance of a student.

Possible mitigating circumstances include:

  • significant illness or injury
  • the death or critical/significant illness of a close family member/dependent
  • significant family crises or major financial problems leading to acute stress
  • absence for public service, e.g., jury service.

Circumstances that will NOT normally be regarded as grounds for mitigation include:

  • holidays, moving house and events that were planned or could reasonably have been expected
  • assessments that are scheduled close together
  • misreading the timetable or misunderstanding the requirements for assessments
  • inadequate planning and time management
  • failure, loss or theft of a computer or printer that prevents submission of work on time (students should back up work regularly and not leave completion so late that they cannot find another computer or printer)
  • consequences of paid employment (except in some special cases for part-time students)
  • exam stress or panic attacks not diagnosed as illness or supported by medical evidence
  • disruption in an examination room during the course of an assessment which has not been recorded by the invigilators

Events may arise during pregnancy that may constitute mitigating circumstances, and these need to be judged on an individual basis.

If your problems are chronic and/or ongoing and relate to an illness or disability, you should register with DASS rather than submitting mitigating circumstances applications. Bear in mind that if your problems are continuing, the panel will look for reassurance that you are able to manage them in the future.

Interruption of Study

  • The expectation is that a degree course is taken over three or four consecutive years and interruptions are exceptional.
  •  A student who has exceptional circumstances which make it impossible to continue studying, should apply to take temporary leave of absence from their studies.
  • Interruptions normally last for 12 months.
  • An interruption may also be requested to take advantage of an opportunity, such as a placement or intern position.
  • There is no automatic right to interrupt. Students who wish to explore this option should contact the Student Support Team in the first instance. 
  • An application to interrupt must be made before the proposed leave of absence.
  • Applications should be submitted to along with sufficient evidence. 
  • Applications for interruption are considered by the school Interruptions Committee.
  • Where a student is granted an interruption for medical reasons, they must supply a note from a healthcare professional which states that they are fit to resume their studies.

The form can be downloaded HERE and submitted to the Teaching and Learning Office in person or via e-mail to 

Short Term Absence

  • In the event of an absence from the department, a late submission of work, or a missed examination, students should download and complete a Short Term Absence Form and submit it to the Teaching and Learning Office.
  • If you are absent from the University, due to illness, for up to 7 days you must contact the Teaching and Learning Office as soon as possible and self-certify your illness by completing the Temporary Interruption of Study Form.

The form can be downloaded HERE and submitted to the Teaching and Learning Office in person or via e-mail to 

Exams and Attendance

  • Attendance at all examinations is compulsory.
  • Any student who misses an exam for any reason should contact the Teaching and Learning Office immediately.
  • Any student who fails to attend all written papers in any examination period without good cause will be deemed to have withdrawn from the course.
  • Please note that if you are studying in the UK on a Tier 4 visa, you may be subject to additional attendance checks in order to comply with the terms of your visa.