students at freshers fair

What to expect in your first week

Find out what lies ahead during your first week as a new student with us

Your first few weeks in Portsmouth may be a little different to what you had expected, due to Covid-19. We have put together an exciting programme of Orientation events, both in person and virtual, that we encourage you to get involved with. 

You may have to spend your first 14 days in self-isolation, or you may not be able to join us in Portsmouth for the first semester. But rest assured, you will still be able to attend Orientation online events and explore Portsmouth from the comfort of your own home. 

Orientation Week will start from Monday 25th January. Here's a brief snapshot of what you can expect, what you need to do, and what you might like to explore.

Arrival programme and International Orientation 

Each year we welcome new students with an international and EU Orientation programme including campus tours, student information fairs and the opportunity to speak to UoP Global staff who can help you get settled into University life during your first few weeks in the UK. We'll send your orientation and registration programme to you before you start your first week.

This year, our programme will be in-person and online, so don’t worry if you are in self-isolation or unable to fly to the UK. 

You will find all of the information for the arrival programme on this page once the final details have been confirmed. Services and events will include:

  • Register for your course and get your ID checked online
  • Attend our International Orientation Programme where you'll learn more about the University – including welcome presentations for undergraduate students, and a bespoke events for postgraduate students, the full Orientation schedule can be found on MyPort
  • Collect your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) if you're a non-EEA student and here in Portsmouth– your decision letter from our Entry Clearance Office tells you whether to collect your BRP
  • Join a series of social events and sports sessions
  • Visit the Virtual International information fair to discover more about our support services and banks
  • Take part in live Q&A’s with current international students
  • Attend workshops and inspirational talks, to get you motivated for the year ahead!

If you want help finding locations across the university, see our maps and directions page.

Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)

You need a biometric residence permit (BRP) when you apply to stay in the UK for more than 6 months. You don't need to apply for a BRP as well as your visa – you’ll get one automatically once your visa application is approved.

You can use your BRP to confirm your identity, your right to study in the UK, and your right to any public services or benefits.

If you've applied for your Tier 4 General Student Visa outside of the UK, you must collect your BRP. Collect your BRP before your vignette expires or within 10 days of your arrival in the UK – whichever is the latest.

You will need to pick up your BRP card once you have arrived in the UK. Further details of how you can do this will be updated closer to your arrival time. 

For more information please visit

If you fail to produce the requested documentation, you are at risk of exclusion.

Registering for your course

When you register with the University, you’ll need to provide evidence of your qualifications and documentation to verify your identity. For identification purposes, one of the following documents must be shown at the point of registration:

  • Valid passport
  • Valid EU/EEA ID Card (European students only)

As evidence for your qualifications, you must provide copies of qualification certificates as detailed in your offer letter or CAS statement. Details of how to do this will be communicated to you closer to the time.

Please note, if you cannot provide proof of your identity by one of these means, you cannot be registered. The University reserves the right to exclude any student who is unable to satisfactorily provide proof of qualifications obtained.

If you're transgender and can’t provide documentation that reflects your gender identity, get in touch with and we’ll resolve this for you in a confidential and respectful way.

If you’re transferring from another university and don’t yet hold a visa for the University of Portsmouth, you’ll be required to show evidence of your visa application - such as the Home Office receipt - before you’re allowed to register onto your course.  

Paying your tuition and accommodation fees

You should make your payment through webpay or, if you are unable to pay online, by credit or debit card. We encourage this as bank drafts and cash can be easily lost during your travels.

Please go to the finance cash desk in University House (on the ground floor). The desk is open weekdays and specific times will be available in September.

Late arrival and attendance in Teaching Block 1

You should really try to avoid late arrival as this will negatively affect your studies. Your term start date and the last date for registration is included in your offer letter.

We encourage you to travel to Portsmouth wherever possible to start your course with us. We recognise that you may be unable to travel internationally and therefore you will be able to access online provision, including both one-to-one pastoral and academic support, in Teaching Block 1.

Students who started in the Autumn, you will be expected to arrive in Portsmouth in Teaching Block 2, in February 2021. The latest date of arrival will be confirmed soon. For students starting Teaching Block 1 in February 2021, the latest date for arriving in Portsmouth to commence your studies will be confirmed soon.

If you are unable to come to Portsmouth in Teaching Block 1, you will need to make you sure that you have registered online by the latest date of registration.

If you can't avoid arriving later, you will need to let us know. There will be a way of letting us know closer to the time of Registration. If you will be staying in university accommodation, you'll also need to contact the Student Housing team to let them know you'll be arriving later.

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