I've been sent a letter from the uni telling me they've withdrawn me from my course – what can I do?

You should make an appointment to see an advisor from the Union Support team immediately. It may be we can help overturn this decision.

I’m thinking of leaving, am I the only one?

No, 1 in 12 students leave higher education during their first year of study and many more consider it, so it's important that you know you're not alone!

What are the common reasons students consider leaving?

The common reasons we hear that students consider leaving university are:

> Difficulty coping with their studies

> Problems adjusting to a student lifestyle

> Issues with friends & their social life

> Accommodation

What times of year does this happen the most?

You may also find that you encounter these feelings during times that many students find particularly challenging, such as:

> During the first term

> Immediately before Christmas

> Immediately after Christmas

How can Union Support help me?

We invite you to talk through these difficulties. We can help by directing you to a number of support services, information sources and student activities to help you into a more positive mindset. And if you still discover that Brighton University isn't for you, then we want to ensure you can make a well-informed decision with confidence.

Withdrawing from university can be an expensive decision - for example, you might need to pay your year's tuition fee and accommodation fees until the end of the contract. The University’s Student Advice Centre can help you work out what the cost could be in your particular circumstances. They offer advice on withdrawal HERE but you may think this is unfair and simply wrong. We can help if you think there is a problem so get in touch with US as early as possible.

What can I do if I don't like my course?

Don't worry, all is not lost! Have a chat with your lecturers and find out whether the course is going to continue the way it’s going or if there are any changes ahead. If you decide that you want to try to change course or leave the University of Brighton, make sure you come and talk to Union Support - we'll make sure you don't miss anything. Mistakes made in the way in which you leave university could make it very difficult for you to study in future and prove more expensive than necessary. For more advice and information look HERE.

Can I take a break from my studies?

It may be possible for you to take an authorised interruption of studies, known as "intermission". If you are unable to study for a specific reason, such as illness, bereavement, or personal problems. Come in to see an advisor from the Union Support team, or contact your Personal Tutor, Course Leader, or SSGT, who can help you apply for this.

I think I want to change my degree programme. What are my options?

Your options depend on a number of factors, including your current programme, the programme you want to switch to, and what stage you are at in your studies. You may also wish to keep in mind the timing of your request for requesting a transfer. Come in to see a Union Support advisor, or visit your Course Leader or SSGT for guidance.

I am, or think I may be, dyslexic/dyspraxic - who can help me?

The sooner you disclose a medical condition, physical disability, mental health condition or Specific Learning Disability (e.g. dyslexia), the earlier the university will be able to arrange support for you. The University’s Dyslexia and Disability team are qualified and experienced, and will offer you as much support as possible with these or other conditions which may mean you would benefit from additional support. If you are getting support but you don’t think it is helping we recommend speaking to the Dyslexia and Disability team and telling them this. You can also contact Union Support and we will do all we can to help.

I can't get on with my housemates - what can I do?

The Chaplaincy may be able to offer mediation or strategies for coping with difficult housemates (don't forget to consider that it may be you who is being difficult!). If your housemate's behaviour is unlawful then you always have the option of reporting it to the Police or to the university (students can be held liable for their behaviour, even outside of university premises). If you need to move, then you should probably contact Union Support - we can give you advice which is tailored specifically to you and your situation, which may be unique.

My house is mouldy and it's really getting me down. How do I get it fixed?

You could try talking to the Environmental Health department at your local Council (Brighton & Hove,Eastbourne and Hastings). Your landlord or letting agent may also be able to help. If the situation's really bad then Union Support can help explain what options you may have for taking legal action. Most mould, though, is caused by behaviour, rather than structure; are you heating/ventilating the space appropriately? Are you drying clothes on radiators? Is the mould forming behind large items of furniture where no air can circulate? Are you opening windows to ventilate your bathroom from steam when you shower?

I'm not getting the most out of my time, or I'm struggling to meet friends - what should I do?

You could join a club/societyor get into volunteering. If neither of those float your boat, how about joining the gym or going along to some events hosted by Brighton SU? Don't forget that Brighton, Eastbourne & Hastings are pretty big areas - if you can't find what you're looking for within the university or the Students’ Union then maybe you can find it within the wider local community instead.

I'm homesick - is everyone else coping better than me?

Probably not - everyone misses home comforts sometimes! If you're struggling, then there's plenty of support at Brighton. Union Support, the Chaplaincy (catering for those of all faiths, and none), the Counselling service and the Medical Centre may all be able to help you).