Guest blogger Written by

Martina Gardeva (Bulgaria)

I am Martina Gardeva from Bulgaria studying MSc Tourism Management and Marketing. As you prepare to start your studies at BU you might be wondering what you should do if you need help once you are here. As a student at BU, you will have free access to many academic support services, such as the peer-assisted learning (PAL), additional learning support (ALS), IT support, virtual learning environment (VLE) and a language centre. Below I will give you more details on each of them.

Peer Assisted Learning (PAL)

PAL is all about students helping each other out and studying together.  Usually this is a student in the year above you. They give you helpful tips about writing assignments or can help prepare you for different types of exams. 

BU IT Service Portal

This is the live IT support for students. Via live chats you can get help with many of the BU services like email, timetables, files and storage; learn how to use the printers, media and audio software, myBU, etc. You can also report incidents and problems.

Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)

You will be able to access the VLE on campus and from home.  Here you can see your classes timetable, lecture notes, reading lists and even things like past exam papers.

Language centre

The SansSpace Virtual Language Centre has many self-managed learning guides in French, German, Arabic, Mandarin, Italian, Spanish, and Chinese for all levels – from complete beginners to more advanced learners.  They also have numerous audio and video files and are open 24/7, which means you can work whenever you want, even from home.

Study skills workshops

This is one of the best support services for International Students.  You can get help on the style you have to write your assignment in, improve presentation skills, get tips for successful referencing or best practices for revision and exams.  I find these classes pretty helpful and a great way to get used to the academic environment in the UK in a quick and efficient way.

Additional learning support

If you have any medical issues, injuries or any other difficulties, you can always contact the team and be sure to get excellent service.

It doesn’t matter what problem you have, I always find it better if you search for advice from professionals, as they will always guide you the right way. The academic support teams are here for us and will always try to give us excellent tips, make us feel better and watch us thrive!

By Martina Gardeva, Bulgaria, MSc Tourism Management and Marketing 2017/18