Questions about your studies

Here we have provided answers to common questions relating to your degree and what you will be studying.

Which school is my degree programme allocated to?

You can check which school you belong to by checking the following document. Students enrolled on the BA Humanities and Social Science belong to the school of their principal lead subject.

What is a Personal Tutor?

Your Personal Tutor is normally a member of academic staff based in your school. All students at the University of Edinburgh have a Personal Tutor and/or a Student Support Officer (SSO).

Your Personal Tutor or Student Support Officer is the first point of contact for advice should you be experiencing difficulties (whether academic or personal).

You must make an appointment to see your Personal Tutor or Student Support Officer during Freshers' Week as part of matriculation, as you will formally enrol for courses at this meeting.

How do I find out who my Personal Tutor is?

There are three ways to find out who your Personal Tutor is:

  • at the Introductory Meeting for your School
  • by visiting your School Student Support Office
  • by checking your MyEd portal. Your login details will be provided prior to arrival.

What are the semester dates?

The University's academic year is divided into two semesters.

Semester dates and academic calendars can be viewed on the News and Events website:

Semester dates for PGDE students for the 2013/14 session are:

  • 19 August 2013 - 13 December 2013
  • 06 January 2014 - 04 April 2014
  • 28 April 2014 - 6 June 2014

When do lectures start?

Courses will begin on Monday 16 September 2013. To find out where your first class will be held, check with the relevant School's Undergraduate/Teaching Office or subject area office.

Is there a preliminary reading list for my degree?

Suggested reading materials can be found in our preliminary reading list to help you prepare for beginning your studies. However, we strongly recommend that you do not buy any books until you arrive.

What will I be studying?

Your degree has a specific programme of study which can be found in the Degree Regulations and Programmes of Study (DRPS). More information on the DRPS and how to use it, please see our guide to DRPS.

What is an outside course?

Many of our degree programmes allow students to take courses in addition to the main subject. To find out whether or not you can take outside courses please check the DRPS (as above).

How do I find out about the outside courses I might wish to study?

You will discuss your choice of courses with your Personal Tutor or Student Support Officer when you meet him or her during Freshers' Week. There will also be an Academic Fair during Freshers' Week which provides an opportunity to find out more about all courses offered at the University of Edinburgh. Please check the events timetable.

Where can visiting undergraduate students get more information?

Visiting undergraduate students can get information that is relevant to them from the Humanities and Social Science Visiting Student Office.

Do I need to use my University email account?

When you join the University you will be given a University email account and address which will be used for a variety of essential communications.

You must access and manage this account regularly as the University will send you vital information from time to time, such as on exam arrangements or changed class times or locations, and will assume that you have opened and acted on these communications. Failure to do so will not be an acceptable excuse or grounds for appeal.

For more information please read the University of Edinburgh's policy on the use of email as a method of contacting students.


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