We understand that the current news surrounding the Covid-19 outbreak can be scary and confusing, and it is sometimes hard to know what to pay attention to, and what to ignore in order to protect ourselves and stay mentally well.

It is our aim to stay on top of developments within the Higher Education sector and Durham specifically, and to use our Advice Service web pages to communicate key information and guidance to students, in relation to the Covid-19 outbreak, so please keep checking back.

Below is a brief outline of some helpful information, but if this does not answer your questions or if you’d like further advice and guidance, you should:

  • Contact the SU Advice Service (click ‘Get in Touch’ to contact a Student Adviser), or browse the pages on the Advice Hub. The Advice Service is free, anonymous, confidential and impartial.

Please also be aware that though we are doing our best to keep on top of the latest guidance, the situation can change at a moment’s notice. All advice pages have a date at the bottom for you to check when the information was updated, and we always recommend checking key information on the links provided.

Housing and accommodation

  • Regardless of the new national lockdown, and whether you are living in your student accommodation or not, you are contractually obliged to continue paying your rent. If this is an issue, you should contact your Landlord/Agents as soon as possible.
  • Guidance around house viewings has not changed in relation to the new national lockdown, and are therefore still legally permitted to go ahead with certain restrictions in place. You can read more about the guidance around viewings here, in Section 3.
  • Current tenants have a right to decline in-person viewings and should discuss this with their Landlord/Agent in an effort to reach a reasonable solution.
  • For information on your rights during the second lockdown, you can watch this video by the SU’s Student Adviser


Your Undergraduate and Postgraduate Academic Officers are working closely with the University to ensure that teaching, learning and assessment is delivered fairly and in a Covid-secure way. You should keep an eye on their social media accounts for updates or ways to contact them.

  • If you anticipate that you may miss any of your academic commitments because of the infection, the University has a Self-Certification of Absence Form. Find out more here.
  • If you think the pandemic may impact your ability to complete your summative assessments (either at all, or to the best of your ability), you can contact the SU Advice Service to discuss the options available to you. You can also find out more about the University’s process for submitting a Serious Adverse Circumstances (SAC) form here.

International students

  • You can find the latest Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) guidance here.
  • If you’re an international student and you’re concerned about fulfilling your visa requirements, and how this may be affected by Covid-19, please contact the Student Immigration Service using their online form.


Testing positive or Self-isolating

  • If you receive a positive test result for Covid-19, or if you are told to self-isolate, you should alert the University through Banner Self Service on duo.
  • You also need to follow the latest government guidance regarding self-isolation or testing positive. You can find out more in our self-isolation guide here.

Durham University disciplinary procedures

  • The University has introduced a new process for responding to breaches of Covid-19 guidance. You can read our summary of this new process here.

Page last reviewed: 09/11/2020