The Lingo


We try to keep jargon to a minimum, but here's some common terms you may come across at the start of your studies.

Personal Academic Tutor – A PAT is a member of academic staff to whom you may talk about academic and personal issues.  He/she will be able to give you advice about study skills, modules, welcome and your progression throughout your year. You should not feel worried about going to talk to her/him about any subject.

Programme – The name given to the overall subject you have enrolled for, e.g. BA (Hons) Literature

Module – A unit of study covering a specific topic in degree provision.  A module may last for either one or two semesters and the number of modules you will study will vary depending on what degree you are studying.

Semester – Degree teaching takes place during two 18-week teaching terms called semesters.  There is a reading week in each semester.

Reading week – A reading week is not a holiday, but a pause to help you to catch up on, or get ahead with your reading or coursework. You will often find that there are deadlines to submit coursework after Reading Weeks.

Enrolment – This is the formal process of registering to be a student with us where you confirm to abide by the Student Partnership Agreement and become liable for fees.

MyUHI – the Student Information System. You can access this to update your personal details. You will be able to check your application, enrolment, and view your results in the course of the year. 

MyDay - You can access MyDay once you have enrolled on the module/unit. Visit MyDay for news and updates.

Course Rep – One of your classmates (or possibly you) elected by the students on your course to represent them on a departmental student-staff committee which usually meets once each term. 

Credit – Each module or your course is worth a set number of credits which together add up to the value needed to obtain an award.

HISA –  Highlands and Islands Students' Association. HISA is run by students who represent you on various committees.

Freshers’ Fair – Freshers’ Fair is a programme of events and activities organised by HISA at the start of term.

Blackboard – Our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is called Blackboard. This is used by departments to communicate with students and hosts study materials and support. Please note: Some departments prefer to via other channels.