We will continue to keep this page updated to provide information and advice to Inverness College UHI staff, students and employer partners.
Last updated: 27th March 2020
Inverness College UHI and the Scottish School of Forestry campus buildings are now closed to reduce the risk of spread of the Coronavirus within our communities. Our Early Learning and Childcare Centre is also closed. This arrangement will continue until further notice.
Please note, that while our buildings may be closed, staff continue to work remotely and departments continue to function off-site, serving our communities, delivering lessons, marking assignments, supporting students, assessing applications for the new academic year and planning for the future.
University-wide information can be found at www.uhi.ac.uk/coronavirus
Information for students
Information for students
Face to face teaching is suspended until further notice. This affects all our further education students, higher education students and apprentices.
Bursary, educational maintenance allowance, childcare and hardship payments will be made as per scheduled dates. The Students Awards Agency Scotland is endeavouring to continue to fund students on time, also.
Course teams have been in touch with students directly regarding coursework and how they plan to continue teaching and assessment arrangements.
In the case of apprentices, your employer has been advised of the current situation and your assesor will continue to work with you on your e-portfolio or by email.
It is important students keep in touch with their course contacts. Please email your lecturer, PDA or PAT if you have further questions. Students can also ask questions via the Red Button.
Our on-site student residences remain, open as normal.
Please be mindful of your own health and wellbeing at this time. Our student support team is there to help you if you are having any difficulties. We encourage all staff and students to follow Inverness College UHI and our Student Support Team on social media.
Our support teams will continue to provide advice, support and guidance through the usual routes, including team mailboxes:
Skillzone materials can be accessed on the essential student skills resource
Access information about online library resources
During our campus closures, we ask that students do not follow the normal absence reporting procedures. Instead, please get in touch with your PAT/PDA or your Programme/Module Leader by email. It is important you let us know if you become unwell for any reason and cannot keep up with your course work, and specifically if you suspect you may have the Coronavirus (Covid-19) virus.
Following the Scottish Qualifications Authority annoucement on 19th March, students studying at National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher will not sit exams this year and will, instead, be resulted on their qualification based on their course work, estimated grades and prior attainment.
The SQA has made it clear that it will require as much information on the achievements of learners as possible, so it is essential you continue to work through your units, coursework and assessments assigned by your course team over the next few months.
The SQA is working to ensure learners receive their results no later than 4th August, as planned, and students are encouraged to sign up to MY SQA, their online and text service as a direct way to receive their results. More information on this decision can be found on the SQA website.
We understand that this is a concern for a lot of students and that this is an uncertain time for learners who have worked hard throughout the year. Please speak to your course tutors or departments for more information, particularly regarding the completion of coursework.
Other SQA qualifications, such as HNC/Ds, NPAs etc, will also be impacted in some way and we are working closely with the SQA regarding potential assessment adjustments. Further information on UHI Degree exams and assessments for other awarding bodies will be communicated to the relevant students as soon as possible. Meanwhile, please keep in touch with your course tutors.
Please be assured that we are seeking as much certainty as possible for learners so that they can continue their journey at college, university or into employment. It is essential your choices and opportunities are not affected by the Coronavirus crisis.
Information for applicants
Information for applicants
We have taken the decision to suspend scheduled face to face interviews for courses starting in August/September.
Instead of holding face to face interviews, we will be making offers based on applications only. This allows us to continue to make decisions on places for courses starting in 2020. Applicants with interviews suspended should receive decisions shortly. There may be some exceptions and in these cases, interviews will be facilitiated online. We endeavour to make decisions as quickly as possible. All offers will be sent by email (please check your junk folder if you haven't received an email from us in your mailbox).
If you have any queries, please email email@example.com
Information for employers
Information for employers
Updates from external partners:
Highland Council has produced information regarding support for Highland businesses on its website.
CITB has produced this information regarding support for construction employers on the CITB website. This includes suspension of its industry levy collection for an initial period of three months.
Online educational resources:
Employers with apprentices may find the following free, online education resources useful at this time.
- OpenLearn, the Open University's free-to-use learning platform.
- LinkedInLearning is currently offering a month's free trial, providing unlimited access to business, technical and creative courses
- Alison offers free online courses from experts with course categories including maths, science, business and technology.
- BBC Bitesize includes useful core skills resources
All Foundation Apprenticeship work placements are suspended until further notice. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or concerns.
Following the suspension of face-to-face teaching, all modern apprentices have been advised to return to work.
Assessors will work with your Modern Apprentices via the online portfolio and Business Solutions staff will work remotely to support you and your Apprentices throughout this period.
Clearly, we do not know as yet how long face-to-face teaching will be suspended. Our business solutions team will stay in regular contact with you to ensure you are kept up to date for planning purposes. Email email@example.com if you have any questions or concerns.
Q. I have one or more apprentices with the college who are attending or are planned to attend block release at the college. What are the arrangements for this?
A. Block releases at the college will be suspended from 5pm on Tuesday 17th March 2020. Modern Apprentices will be asked to return to work with their employers. We are determining whether there are theory sessions that could be delivered remotely and will contact employers with details as these are worked through at a subject level. The Business Solutions Team will contact you with updates as the situation progresses: firstname.lastname@example.org
Q. I have one or more apprentices with the college. Will the assessor still visit the apprentice in the workplace?
A. At present, Assessors have been asked to move all reviews and assessment to be undertaken online. Your assessor will keep in contact with your Modern Apprentice via telephone, email and online portfolio.
Q. If my apprentice’s progress is delayed due to the Coronavirus situation, will they be able to extend their programme end date to enable them to complete their qualifications?
A. Yes. End dates can be extended in such extenuating circumstances.
Q. I am planning to recruit new apprentices to commence in September 2020. Will I still be able to recruit and start new apprentices?
A. Yes. The Business Solutions Team and your assessors will be on hand to support you to recruit new apprentices. email@example.com
Higher and Graduate Apprenticeships
Face-to-face teaching is now suspended, which could impact the next block release planned in May for the Civil Engineering Higher and Graduate Apprentices.
Lecturing staff have been in direct contact with all the apprentices to advise them of online delivery and assessment plans. Please encourage your apprentice/s to keep working with the online portfolio. Clearly this is an evolving situation and we will keep you updated throughout the coming weeks. Email Lorraine.firstname.lastname@example.org with any further questions or concerns.
Early Learning and Childcare
Early Learning and Childcare Graduate Apprentices will continue to access their teaching, learning and assessments online. As schools and nurseries are now closed, alternative arrangements will be put in place to ensure apprentices are able to achieve and progress in their workplace modules. We have three years for apprentices to complete these, offering time and space to complete this practice-based work. Email email@example.com if you have any questions or concerns.
All short courses have been postponed until further notice. We are working with employers with scheduled courses and will endeavour to offer you the option for your course to be delivered via video conference. Our business solutions team will update you regarding options. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with further questions or concerns.
Q. I have a course booked at my premises, will it still go ahead?
A. No, unfortunately this will have to be re-booked at a future date. We are also exploring Video conferencing options. The Business Solutions team will contact you to rearrange.
Q. I have a course booked at the college, will it still go ahead?
A. Face to face courses have been suspended from 17th March. Unfortunately, this will have to be re-booked at a future date. We are also exploring Video conferencing options. The Business Solutions team will contact you to rearrange.
Q. I have booked a course which is being cancelled, can I re-book this course free of charge once the current virus outbreak is under control?
A. Yes, if your course date is within 90 days of 17th March and we are unable to offer a video conferenced option, we will be happy to arrange for you to re-book your training once face-to-face teaching at the college recommences. If it is possible to move to an online delivery format for your course, Business Solutions will contact you over coming weeks.
Events and room bookings
All room bookings and external events have been postponed until further notice. Email email@example.com with further questions or concerns.
Information for staff
Information for staff
As of Monday 23rd March, we will be moving to a position where only a minimal number of staff will remain working from the main Inverness College UHI campus building.
This allows Inverness College UHI to remain open and continue its key business functions, while supporting staff and students to work remotely and minimising the spread of the Coronavirus by having as few staff as possible working from the building.
Most staff are now working remotely. We have identified a small number of staff representing core functions, who will continue to operate from the main campus. These core functions include estates, ICT, finance, the senior management team, health and safety, HR and front of house.
For staff continuing to access the building, additional preventative measures will be introduced including deep cleaning of operational areas and protocols for access. Managers of these teams have already been informed of the changes.
Assessors will also move to undertaking assessment and learner progress reviews remotely, working closely with the Business Solutions Team.
We are curretly putting together an employee engagement strategy to ensure that, where possible, staff have opportunities to engage with online forums and professional development activities.
Useful support links
Useful support links
Staff and students should continue to check their email account for the latest information. Updates from Inverness College UHI will also be posted on social media, in the MyDay newsroom (students) and iConnect (staff).
In the meantime, if you have any further questions please get in touch with your local course contact team and support services or use our red button feedback service.
We appreciate this is a concerning time for everyone. The health, safety and wellbeing of of our staff and students is paramount. We will continue to monitor the situation and take all precautions in line with advice from Health Protection Scotland and NHS Inform.
Please continue to look after yourselves and your loved one.