Things to do at University of Leicester

Hello, welcome to the United Kingdom. If you are reading this, I believe you have made the right decision by choosing this university to do your studies. Once you are here, there are few things you need to do to make sure you have a nice stay balanced both in your career prospects as well as your personal life.

About this Story

This article is a first complete multi-part article that gets updated often and updates are notified in comments as well. So, if you are copying this article, please do add a link back so that once the article becomes outdated, I’ll make sure the article is updated with the latest of information possible and I will also be actively monitoring comments for questions and request to information.

This is the fifth part of the multi-part article:

This article provides you a list of things that you must do when you arrive at Leicester and once you are here, sort out things that are needed for your academic progression. Then you need to make sure, you are working on a few things that help you out in your career as well.

First things first, once you arrive at Leicester, make sure you sort out the accommodation as soon as possible. If you have done already, then great.

University and other Registrations

When you come over here, you need to get registered with the United Kingdom’s services, as soon as possible. The university provides a Registry Service, which is responsible for the administration of undergraduate and postgraduate students. The Student Registry Service is in the Student Services Centre on the Ground Floor of the Charles Wilson Building.

You will be able to get your identification card only when you have paid your first instalment in full. That should be your first plan. Once doing that you need to go with the two of these:

  • GP / Medical Registration
  • Police Registration

When you pay for the visa fees, it includes a component called IHS, which is Immigration Health Surcharge for the same number of years your visa is valid for.

General Practitioner Medical Registration

Remember when you come to the United Kingdom, you have full free access to the medical facilities provided by the National Health Service (NHS). Access to the NHS is universal, but depending on your immigration status within the UK, you may be charged for accessing certain services. However, there are certain services that are free to everyone:

  • Treatment given in an accident and emergency (A&E) department - this does not include any further treatment following an admission to hospital; and
  • Treatment for certain infectious diseases (but for HIV/AIDS, only the first diagnosis and counselling that follows it are free); and
  • Compulsory psychiatric treatment; and
  • Family planning services - this does not include termination of pregnancy or infertility treatments.

You will not be charged for any NHS treatment if you are ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK, or if an exemption to charging applies.

The full definition of ordinarily resident for the purposes of accessing NHS services can be found here and is summarized as follows:

“A person will be “ordinarily resident...” in the UK when that residence is lawful, adopted, voluntary, and for settled purposes as part of the regular order of their life for the time being, whether of short or long duration.”

In practice, you are normally ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK if you are living and working in the UK and are:

  • A British citizen
  • Naturalised within the UK
  • Settled within the UK (commonly referred to as holding Indefinite Leave to Remain)

British citizens/EEA/Swiss nationals who are visiting the UK may be charged for NHS services they receive at the point of accessing care. The final decision to charge will rest with the healthcare provider.

Who will be charged for accessing the NHS?

Non-EEA nationals who are visiting the UK and have not paid the NHS surcharge (commonly those entering on a visitor visa/sought entry at the UK border), including those who hold long-term multiple entry visas, will be charged for accessing NHS services (except the free services noted above).

British citizens/EEA/Swiss nationals who are visiting the UK may be charged for NHS services they receive at the point of accessing care. The final decision to charge will rest with the healthcare provider.

If your circumstances are as above, it is recommended that you are covered for healthcare through private medical insurance for the duration of your visit, even if you are a former UK resident. Should you need NHS treatment and you have not arranged insurance, you will be charged at 150% of the standard NHS rate.

What happens if I cannot pay?

Once the hospital has established that you must pay for treatment, you will usually be asked to pay the full cost in advance, unless emergency treatment is required immediately.

If you cannot pay in advance, the hospital will ask for a written undertaking to pay.

If you cannot provide proof that you can afford to pay, treatment will be refused and you may be offered the chance to be treated privately.

Note: Failure to pay for accessing NHS services may affect your ability to apply for a UK visa in the future.

Police Registration

Some people need to register with the police after arriving in the UK with a visa, or after getting permission to stay for longer in the UK.

If you need to register, you must go to the police within 7 days of you:

  • arriving in the UK if you applied for a visa from outside the UK
  • getting your biometric residence permit if you applied to stay for longer from inside the UK

Check if you need to register

If you applied outside the UK

Check your visa ‘vignette’ (sticker in your passport). You must register if it has ‘Police registration’ or ‘Register with police in 7 days of entry’ on it.

If you applied inside the UK

Check the letter you get from the Home Office when your application’s approved. It will tell you if you must register.

If you don’t register, your permission to stay might be shortened and you’ll have to leave the UK. You can also be stopped from getting or extending a UK visa in future.

You can learn more about your police registration requirements on the UK Government Website.

International Students Welcome Programme

After doing the above, your very next thing to do is to find when is your International Students Welcome Programme taking place. Make sure you go ahead and attend and understand the culture here and make friends here. You will be given free wrist bands, goodies, etc. worth a lot of money. Moreover, you get to have loads of free food, so be prepared.

Choosing Modules

When you choose a degree, you will be having a list of modules for each semester. There are three types of modules:

  • Compulsory Modules in a semester. You must take this module for this semester at any cost. You don’t have any other option of backing off. This applies for some specialised degrees.
  • Compulsory Modules for the entire course. These modules can be taken in any one of the semesters. It is compulsory but not attached to any particular semester. The best example for this is Personal & Group Skills.
  • Modules of your choice. The rest of the modules fall under this category. They are semester bound and you must choose at least four of all available subjects per semester. This again depends on your degree.

You should have learnt more about module selection in the previous article, University Life when you are at Leicester.

Trial Periods

During these trial periods, you have the full freedom about changing your module options. I believe, the standard allowed free time for you to choose the modules is about two weeks. After that you need to use the MCV - Module Choice Validator to confirm your module choices.

There might be less or no chance of changing the modules once the modules are confirmed. So please make a wise decision by asking your peers and judging based on the days you attended the module classes. Also, please make sure you research about the course convener and the probability of you passing the module and your interest towards it.

Extra Curricular Activities

There are thousands of activities you can take up during your course time. My best advice to you is please don’t take anything that is not related to your course or discipline. I have seen people working at restaurants to make money. I am strongly against that approach, instead, I would like you to research activities related to your subject area. I would suggest something like mentoring and getting mentored by mentors like me.

Our university provides Working in Social Enterprise through our Careers Development Centre.

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