Life at the University of Bristol
Find out more about life as a mature student at the University of Bristol
Student support for mature students
The University will provide you with a personal tutor who is based in your department. Your tutor is there to help you with both academic advice and personal development. They are usually the first port of call when you need support and can direct you to relevant University services.
To help you become familiar with the campus and meet other new and current mature students we run a coffee morning on the Thursday before term starts. This includes the opportunity to go on a campus tour when it is relatively quiet on campus.
To help you become familiar with the campus and meet other new and current mature students we host the Mature Students Welcome Event. It includes social activities and an introduction to the services available to help you during your time as a student.
Mature Student Advocates
Mature Student Advocates are current students who are available to act as peer mentors to first year students and help to improve the mature student experience at University.
Mature student mingles
We hold regular mingles for our mature students to meet and chat about university life. This is an opportunity to take some time out of studying and have a coffee and biscuits with like-minded students.
Mature Students Network
Mature Students Network is a group run by students for students, where mature students can socialise and communicate. The network organise a range of social activities throughout the academic year. These include brunch, evening meals, quiz nights and one off events such as an Escape Room challenge. They are open to suggestions for future events. They have their own facebook group University of Bristol Mature Students Network and an email mailing list.
The University does not have dedicated mature student halls but has some recommended accommodation for mature students (see 'What options do you have for mature students?').
Mature students are not limited to the listed accommodation and can choose any of the available accommodation. As part of the accommodation application process students write a short statement. In this you can include information about yourself and interests as well as noting the type of people you might like to live with. For example ‘I’m a mature student (23) who likes sports and would prefer to live with people with similar interests aged 21 - 30’.
Some mature students choose to live in private accommodation and there are many private accommodation providers in the city. Accommodation prices in popular student areas (Clifton, Redland, Montpelier) may be higher than in other parts of the city so do your research to find the area which most suits your budget.
Commuting to the University
The main University campus is in the Clifton area of the city and is served well by a number of buses, is within easy walking distance of the Clifton Down train station and easily accessible from the main Bristol Temple Meads station.
There is very limited parking in the area surrounding the Clifton Campus and no dedicated student parking. For further information on transport options please see the comprehensive Student Transport Plan
Childcare - the University day nursery
The University day nursery accommodates children of students and staff between 3 months and 5 years. Spaces are limited but priority is given to student parents. You can apply for a place even before you have made a final decision to study with us. Visit the University Day Nursery website for further information, fees and an application form.
In addition to this there are a wide range of other nurseries and childcare providers across the City. Bristol City Council's website provides a comprehensive list of these and also offers helpful advice for parents.
Your timetable will not be available until a few weeks before the start of the academic year. Lectures can be scheduled at any time between 8am - 6pm Monday to Friday, except for Wednesday when teaching finishes at 1pm for most courses.
If you need your timetable early for childcare purposes please email the mature students’ adviser. We may be able to provide a rough timetable.
You will have to do independent study alongside your lectures. A lot of mature students manage their studies like a full time job, working the hours of 9am - 5pm. However, how you manage your workload is your choice.
Some of our courses have flexible modes of study. For example, the BA in English Literature and Community Engagement is taught on Wednesday evenings and the Foundation Year in Arts and Humanities is taught on Monday and Tuesday between 10am – 3pm.
Do you have a disability?
There is additional funding available for students with a disability in the form of a Disabled Student’s Allowance (DSA).
If you declare that you have a disability on your application to university then it will only be used to offer you financial and practical support. It will not be used to judge your application or be passed on to anybody outside of the university without your permission.
Mature Students Advisor
Starting at University is an exciting time with lots of life changes. The Mature Students’ and Peer Support Adviser, Maria Tottle, and the team of Mature Student Advocates are here to help you settle in and make the best possible start in your studies. Maria will contact you before you start at the University to invite you to the mature student welcome events.