The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T +44 (0)1227 764000
Moving to a new country to study at an international university is an exciting and challenging adventure, and the greater the challenge, the more satisfying the rewards. Kent recognises the challenges of studying in a new country, and we are dedicated to guiding and supporting you through this exciting step in your educational life.
Library and IT services
Canterbury and Medway
The library and computing services provide a key part of student life. We have excellent facilities on our campuses with expert staff to guide you.
Brussels has a wide choice of libraries on offer, including some unique specialist libraries. Kent students have access to the libraries in ULB and VUB. Kent students are also members of the Templeman Library at Kent’s Canterbury campus with online access to its numerous specialist journals. For more information please click here.
Common rooms inside Reid Hall include a library with computers and reference books, a reading and music room with a piano, and a lecture hall. Kent postgraduates use facilities at Reid Hall alongside graduate students from Columbia University, Barnard College, University of Florida and other similarly prestigious institutions.
English-language study centres available in Paris include the library of the Institut Charles V (part of University of Paris VII), with over 20 000 works in English, and the American Library, founded in 1920, with over 115 000 books, as well as 350 current periodicals, latest newspapers and weekly cultural and social events (www.americanlibraryinparis.org).
The spectacular Bibliothèque nationale de France (National Library) and the Public Library at the Centre Pompidou also offer extensive, open-access English language resources and excellent research facilities.
There are also several excellent English language bookshops nearby.
Each student has a personal tutor who has responsibility for his/her pastoral care. Students have compulsory meetings with their tutors at least once a term. Tutors make time throughout the term for students who need advice, either personal or academic.
Centre for English and World Languages
The Centre for English and World Languages based in Keynes College offers English language development for all non native English speakers. For more information please visit the CEWL website.
Student Learning Advisory Service
The Student Learning Advisory Service is based on the Canterbury campus. If you need academic support or study skills advice they will be able to help. They offer programmes of seminars each academic term on a range of subjects. For more information please click here.
Student advice centre
The Student Advice Centre, a part of Kent Union, provides appointments with an adviser who will help you with any problems or queries you may have. The service is confidential and independent of the university - no one outside the advice centre has access to its records. The contact e-mail address is email@example.com and for most enquiries you can call the Student Advice Line: 01227 827724
The Student Advice Centre is your first point of contact for any visa and immigration enquiries.
Kent Union can give you contact details of a society for your country or nationality. This is a great way to meet friends and get support. Through the life changing experience of being an international student at Kent, you will be supported by friends, societies, and shared activities to help you through your time in a new culture.
As a self-contained campus university, Kent provides an international community that will become your family away from home, and a university experience that consistently places Kent at the top of the National Student Satisfaction tables. Keep in touch with the International and European Offices at Kent during your application, studies and graduation, and we'll be with you every step of the way.
The UK Council for International Student Affairs is a useful external organisation for all international students.
Read more about social activities and getting involved at Kent.
We have a chaplaincy on campus to provide spiritual and emotional support for all Kent students.
We have two full time chaplains on the Canterbury campus who can advise on opportunities for prayer and worship on campus and in the local area.
Full time Chaplains
- The Revd. Stephen Laird - Anglican (Keynes LG 16) (82) 7491; Mobile (07970) 787476
- Fr. Peter Geldard - Catholic (Eliot W3 W1) (82) 3348; Mobile (07970) 228 762
Opportunities for prayer and worship on Campus
Confidential listening and advice for individuals - students and staff - whether or not they have a religious/cultural affiliation
Spiritual direction and pastoral care
Information and advice about local places of worship and local religious communities (Muslim, Jewish and Buddhist etc. as well as Christian)
The University of Kent Chaplains also support a number of student societies and organise a full and varied programme of well-attended social, cultural and educational activities. The Chaplaincy Department is in contact with an above average proportion of Overseas and European students. Chaplains may be contacted at any time.
The Chaplaincy Department, Eliot College, The University, Canterbury, Kent. CT2 7NY. Tel No: 4000.
The Markaz, which is the main place of prayer for Muslims in Canterbury. Directions and the address can be found here
The service at the Medway campus is part of the wider network based on the Canterbury campus. They aim to provide a focal point for worship and prayer on the Medway campus and advise students on places of worship in the local area. They also support the faith based societies on campus. Please see their website for more information.
Students at the Brussels campus should feel free to contact the Chaplaincy based at the Canterbury campus. For further information please visit their website, students should contact the Brussels school or for more information of chaplaincy services available in the local area.
Students dividing their time between the Canterbury and Paris campuses will have access to and full contact with the Canterbury chaplaincy.
Moving to a new country to study at an international university is an exciting and challenging adventure. The greater the challenges, the more satisfying the rewards, and the University of Kent is dedicated to guiding and supporting you through this exciting step in your educational life. One of the greatest challenges in moving to a new country is adapting to and understanding a different culture.
Culture can be broadly defined as the shared sets of values, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviours held by members of the host people. To make the most of their time at Kent, international students are encouraged to be aware of these cultural patterns and respond to them appropriately.
British culture is internationally influenced and is open to multicultural input. At the same time, British culture is unique and distinct, and the University of Kent hopes that you will enjoy exploring the culture differences that Britain has to offer.
Cultural adjustment is a natural part of living in a different country, and it will take a while to get used to being in a new environment, but you should be confident that you will soon adjust and feel comfortable. If the change in culture causes you real difficulties, please speak to someone about it.
The University of Kent also recognizes the challenges of moving to a new country, and beginning a new course at university, and has put a number of established support services in place to help you adapt and excel.
The UK Council for International Students has put together useful information to help you prepare for living in a different culture.
Health and medical
National Health Service
As a full time overseas student in the UK you are entitled to medical care through the National Health Service (NHS). This is free at the point of delivery - you do not have to pay to see a doctor or other health professional and all investigations (for example, blood tests and X-rays) and procedures are free. There is usually a charge for any medicines prescribed, and if you need to see a dentist or optician you will also have to pay for their services.
Most health related problems can be dealt with by General Medical Practitioners (“GPs”) such as those working at the University Medical Centre. Except in extreme emergency or serious accident, GPs should be your first point of contact with the NHS as they can diagnose and treat a whole range of problems. You will need to register with a GP to obtain an NHS number (follow the links on the University Medical Centre website about how to register and also information on how to make an appointment with a GP/Nurse).
If you do need specialist care, whether through the NHS or if you choose to pay and be seen privately, this needs to be organised by the GP (apart from dental or optician appointments which you have to arrange yourself).
Information for non UK nationals on the use of the NHS, the United Kingdom's state health service is available at the UKCISA website.
If you are studying here for six months or less please be aware that restrictions apply. Please use the website to find out how this affects you, and download the British Council's guide to personal safety.
The University Medical Centre is located on the Canterbury campus in Giles Lane. The medical centre is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 to 18:00. If you are going to be studying in the UK for longer than six months you can register with the National Health Service. This means that you can see a doctor and receive hospital treatment for free. You will have to pay for your prescriptions. The Medical Centre has a pharmacy located next to it. You can register online.
There is also a University Nursing Service based in Keynes College. It is open seven days a week during term time from 7:00 until 24:00 and for emergencies after midnight. No appointment is necessary. The Disability and Dyslexia Support Service can provide support for students with specific learning difficulties. The service can also provide support for students with physical or sensory impairments and medical conditions. If you feel that you would benefit from these services please contact the Disability and Dyslexia Support Service as soon as possible.
The University's Sports Centre is located in the centre of campus and operates a sport for all policy to encourage everyone to keep fit and healthy.
Students at the Medway campus are expected to register with a local doctor. A list of local doctors in the area will be available during Orientation.
If you are unable to register with a local G.P. because the waiting list is closed, please contact:
The Primary Care Advisory Team, Medway Teaching Primary Care Trust
Tel: 01622 655142
The nearest hospital which also has accident and emergency facilities is:
Medway Maritime Hospital
Tel: 01634 830000
Please contact Student Services if you need further assistance. They are located on the ground floor of the Gillingham Building.
The counselling service for Medway students is located within the Student Services department, Medway Building. Appointments can be made by email or telephone 01634-888801.
There are a growing number of UMSA sports teams based at Medway, which welcome both serious athletes and beginners. Teams include football (women's and men's), rugby, netball, hockey, golf, rowing and basketball. The men's football first team have won the Southern England Student Sports Association (SESSA) Premier East league title, and the second team won the SESSA Challenge Cup Final. The Universities at Medway Boat Race is an annual contest between all the universities on the Medway campus and has become a major fixture in the sporting calendar.
Students can make use of the on-campus Sports Centre, and can also take advantage of Medway's range of high-quality leisure centres. The Black Lion Sports Centre in Gillingham offers students preferential rates to use its sports halls, pools, squash courts and health suite and spa. The University has recently pledged £3 million towards a massive redevelopment of the Centre, supporting its bid to become a centre for sporting excellence. The Deansgate Ridge Sports Complex has an 18-hole golf course, athletics track and gym, and the Arethusa Venture Centre offers a great climbing wall and sailing activities.
There is a Health Centre for students and staff. The Centre can be used in cases of illness or accident, for general health information, to obtain prescriptions, and for preventive health care. There is also a dental service. Other specialised services are offered within or in connection with the Health Centre. For major medical treatment, students are advised to use the VUB University Hospital.
Disability and Dyslexia Support Service
If students need to be referred to the Disability and Dyslexia Support Service this can be done through the service based at the Canterbury campus.
A student counselling office can help students with career plans and academic performance. A Centre for Social, Legal and Relational Problems is available at the VUB, where psychological and social workers can help you with social, personal, and relational problems. Qualified legal advice is available for such issues as housing contracts. At the ULB "Psycampus", you can get in touch with a psychologist, a psychiatrist, and a social worker.
As a student of the Brussels School, you are entitled to the full use of the extensive sport facilities on the VUB and ULB campuses for a nominal fee. Facilities are available for aerobics, athletics, badminton, basketball, boxing, dance, diving, football, gymnastics, handball, hockey, ice-skating, judo, karate, mini-soccer, artistic gymnastics, table tennis, power-training, riding, rowing, sailing, sauna, skiing, swimming, squash, tennis, volleyball, water polo, wind-surfing, and yoga. Traditionally, the Brussels School has a football (soccer) team that meets the Canterbury team on the Kent playing fields on the afternoon before the Annual Student Conference.
International Development Office
The International Development Office at Kent is dedicated to the well-being of international students at the University, and welcome you to send an e-mail or to call in to our office at The Registry building on the Canterbury campus. Please ask at The Registry reception for directions.
Students on the Canterbury campus should contact the Student Advice Centre either by email or by telephone on 01227 827724 to get advice or make an appointment.
Students on the Medway campus should contact the student advice centre based in the Pilkington Building. To book an appointment please call 01634 88989 or visit the main reception in the Pilkington Building.
Students on the Brussels campus should visit the administration office to seek advice.
The Canterbury campus has an active student community on campus with a range of student societies to meet everyone’s interest. If you cannot find a society with something that interests you Kent Union will help you set up your own society.
‘Do Something Different’ is a new programme of one off events and activities organised by Kent Union Student Activities department. The programme is aimed at all Kent students and will give you the chance to try out new activities with the freedom to dip in and out as you choose. It will also offer you the opportunity to meet new people and find out more about the local community.
The Universities at Medway Student’s Union also have a range of student societies that cater for everyone. They are also keen for new societies to be set up.
Students on the Brussels campus can take part in the social organisations on the campuses of Université Libre de Bruxelles and Vrije Universiteit Brussel. The Cultural Department organises cultural events and activities and on a regular basis there are concerts, movies and exhibitions to attend.
Language instruction is available from both the ULB and VUB for very reasonable student rates. Private tuition outside VUB and ULB is also available, though these tend to be considerably more costly. There are also regular advertisements on the campus bulletin boards by French and Dutch native speaking students who offer private lessons, or indeed who will exchange instruction in their language for lessons in English.
If you would like further information on the type of activities that will be available to you please contact the Brussels School Further information on the types of activities that you will be available to you is available by contacting the University of Kent in Brussels
You can bring your spouse (husband or wife) or civil partner (same-sex partner) and dependent children to the UK. A 'civil partnership' is a same-sex relationship that has been formally (legally) registered in the UK or your home country. You family will be subject to immigration policy. You will need to show you can support them financially, arrange accommodation for them and that they will leave the UK when you finish your studies.
Family immigration information
- Members of your family may need to apply for entry clearance independently. Students cannot usually bring their unmarried partners (except civil partners) to the UK.
- The UK's immigration policy requires you to have arranged adequate accommodation for your family when they arrive in the UK. The University of Kent can help give you information about finding accommodation locally - please contact the International Office for more information .
- Kent County Council Social Services can provide a list of registered childminders in the area. They can be contacted on: 01227-453720
- Home-Start UK is an external voluntary agency offering support, practical help and friendship to young families. For further information please see their website.
- Children between the age of 5 and 16, they can attend state primary and secondary schools in the United Kingdom, as long as they are here as your dependants. You will not have to pay for this. However, schools may sometimes refuse places to children if they are not staying in the United Kingdom for very long or if they have no free places.
- The British Council have provided information on choosing a state-funded school .
- The UK Government website can provide information on the schools nearby.
The Oaks Day Nursery on the Canterbury campus provides a warm, caring, happy and stimulating environment in which all children can develop. We have 20 qualified members of staff who provide the highest standard of care for children between three months and five years old.
The Students' Union offers a subsidy on any childcare costs for appropriately qualified students. The Nursery has a policy of equal opportunities for both children and staff. There is a high demand for places at The Oaks so early application is vital. The Nursery can be contacted by telephone on 0044 (0)1227 827676
Medway students are advised that the local Leapfrog Nursery has spaces available for the children of student parents. They can be contacted by telephone on 0044 (0) 1634 890250
If you are looking for day care services outside your commune, you can ask the ONE (Office de la Nasissance et de l’Enface). Their address is: 95 Chaussee de Charleori, 1060 Brussels. They can be contacted by telephone on 02 – 542 12 11. They are able to send you a list of officially recognised and approved childcare services in your region.