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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Advice for Applicants and Offer Holders - FAQs

The outbreak of COVID-19 is unprecedented. It will likely disrupt the lives of people and businesses around the world potentially beyond the UK summer.

LSHTM is following the latest advice for the UK from Public Health England (PHE) on the coronavirus outbreak. We encourage applicants and offer holders to regularly check the latest updates on their website. 
 
We understand this is an uncertain time for many of our potential future students. While there still remains uncertainty about the level of disruption, LSHTM is committed to ensuring our future students have timely, useful and clear information as much as possible.

As it stands LSHTM is planning for September 2020 intake to go ahead as normal. However, health and safety of our students and staff is our top priority and, with that in mind, face-to-face teaching may not be possible initially. There may also be offer holders around the world who are unable to join us temporarily due to their ongoing country restrictions. Should that be the circumstances we find ourselves in come September, our intention is to deliver intended learning outcomes digitally wherever possible, rather than postponing original start date. Our recent experience of converting all our face-to-face programmes to be delivered as well as assessed online, together with years of experience of distance learning delivery, stand us in good stead. It is our priority to allow all offer holders to pursue their goal of obtaining a LSHTM degree as planned.

We hope you find the below FAQs helpful.
 

FAQs

If the current COVID-19 situation remains the same in September, will the London-based MSc programmes be moved online or postponed?

As it stands LSHTM is planning for September 2020 intake to go ahead as normal. However, the health and safety of our students and staff is our top priority and, with that in mind, face-to-face teaching may not be possible initially. There may also be offer holders around the world who are unable to join us temporarily due to their ongoing country restrictions.

Should that be the circumstances we find ourselves in come September, our intention is to deliver intended learning outcomes digitally wherever possible, rather than postponing original start date. Our recent experience of converting all our face-to-face programmes to be delivered as well as assessed online, together with years of experience of distance learning delivery, stand us in good stead. It is our priority to allow all offer holders to pursue their goal of obtaining a LSHTM degree as planned.

What is the difference between distance learning and remote digital teaching?

Our distance learning programmes enable you to study independently and at times that are convenient to you, over up to 5 years if needed, to fit in with your other commitments. The nature of this programme is asynchronous as students on the same MSc will be taking the same modules at different times and will generally be at different points in the module material and the programme. Because of the flexible nature of distance learning, you can pay for what you plan to study each year at the point of registration rather than paying the whole fee up-front. This allows you to spread the cost over the lifetime of your programme.

In contrast,  the digital teaching format follows the well-established structure of a traditional on-campus programme, allowing you to obtain your qualification within the conventional 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time study. The nature of this programme is synchronous, as students study the same material on a module at the same time, and allows for more of an interactive delivery of learning outcomes. Pre-recorded or live lectures would normally be followed by interactive sessions, which are then made available online for those who could not join live or wish to re-watch it. Live interactive seminars and practicals also form an integral part of the programme.

Are there any delays to decisions on applications?

No, in the vast majority of cases, we are able to process applications within our advertised turnaround times. 

Can I call you to discuss my application?

We are no longer able to answer telephone enquiries. We ask that you bear with us at this difficult time, and we will continue to post updates on the website. Alternatively, you can contact the Admissions Team by email.

What should I do if English Language proficiency tests are cancelled where I live?

We sympathise with those who are unable to arrange tests at the present time and with those whose tests have been cancelled. You should continue to check test availability in your country. We recommend you check the following websites regularly for updates:

· IELTS
· TOEFL (for non-Tier 4 applicants only)

We have been advised by IELTS that online practice is available during the test centre closures using their free computer-delivered IELTS familiarisation test and their free IELTS practice tests. Free TOEFL test preparation resources (for non-Tier 4 applicants) are also available to support students preparing to take a TOEFL iBT test. 

The deadline to provide English language test results is 31 July, so there is still time to provide results by this date. If you are unable to meet this deadline, we will defer your offer and carry your deposit over to September 2021.

Can I have an extension to my acceptance or deposit payment deadline?

If you are unable to accept your offer due to circumstances caused by the coronavirus outbreak (for example illness or financial difficulty), please email admissions@lshtm.ac.uk with further details. Please note that we may require evidence of your circumstances.

I am required to make a tuition fee deposit payment of £500. If I make a payment, will this be refunded if I am unable to travel due to restrictions in September.

We are currently expecting our courses to start in September 2020 as planned and encourage you to pay your deposit as instructed. This will help us to plan for your arrival.

You may be worried about paying your deposit because of uncertainties around world travel. If you are unable to take up your place for reasons relating to the coronavirus outbreak, we will refund your deposit or allow you to defer your place to the next academic year, in which case your deposit will be carried over to September 2021. Please note that we may require evidence of your circumstances.

I hold an offer of admission for September 2020 but am unable to take my place. Can I defer my admission?

If you hold an MSc offer of admission for September 2020 and are unable to take up your place for reasons relating to the coronavirus outbreak, we will refund your deposit or allow you to defer your place to the next academic year, in which case your deposit will be carried over to September 2021. Refund requests should be made to the Head of Admissions at admissions@lshtm.ac.uk  Please note that we may require evidence of your circumstances.

I cannot complete my undergraduate course and/or provide my final transcript because my education has been disrupted (e.g. due to self-isolation) or my university has closed. What should I do?

We will consider individual circumstances on a case by case basis. For students who already hold an undergraduate degree, we may be able to accept alternatives. For those who don’t, we are unable to proceed and would therefore be guiding them towards a deferral, carrying their deposit over.

Study at my university has been delayed and we will not begin semester 2 teaching until later in April. Therefore, I expect that I will not get my graduation documents until August, which is after the International application deadline of 31st July. Can I still apply for September 2020 entry?

We would consider individual circumstances on a case by case basis. For students who already hold an undergraduate degree, we may be able to accept alternatives. For those who don’t, we are unable to proceed and would therefore be guiding them towards a deferral, carrying their deposit over.

Can I post original documents to you?

Please do not send us any original documents by post until further notice. Updates will be provided on this page as and when they become available.

I received an offer this year. Will the coronavirus outbreak affect my enrolment at LSHTM?

The situation is developing rapidly, and you are therefore encouraged to regularly check the latest updates on the situation through reliable sources such as Public Health England. We are currently planning for the September intake to go ahead as normal, however we are preparing contingency arrangements should this not be possible. We will confirm these arrangements with applicants if they become necessary. We advise that only refundable tickets and accommodation are booked at this time.  We are monitoring the situation closely and will continue to provide updates on this page.

I have already deferred my place from last year. Will I be allowed to defer again if necessary?

If your embassy is advising against travel to the UK or should you not be fit to travel, we would consider your application for further deferral. You need to provide suitable evidence.