Study support

Studying at university is exciting but also demanding.  In the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences our lecturing staff work closely with Effective Learning colleagues to offer you the very best learning opportunities and support.  Our aim is to encourage and support you to become effective and independent learners.

Support in your department

Your lecturers and seminar tutors have weekly office hours when you can drop-in and discuss particular courses and assignments.

Every new student in FASS is allocated an academic tutor. This is an academic member of staff in your department who you can talk more generally about the progress you are making and signpost you to more support should you need it.

Effective learning support

The FASS Effective Learning Team provides support in addition to the range of support offered by your department. In FASS, Effective Learning support is provided by our FASS Learning Support Advisor, Joanne Wood and a team of Writing Mentors. Support is available to all FASS students and we can help you with:

  • Effective and critical reading
  • Academic writing style and structure
  • Using reading to inform your writing
  • Good referencing practices
  • Participating in seminars
  • Note-taking
  • Analysing essay questions
  • Exam preparation strategies

We tailor support to meet individual needs.

The Writing Space

All FASS students can book appointments at the Writing Space which is a welcoming place for you to discuss your academic writing concerns with an experienced writing mentor. The team of 12 Writing Mentors are specially trained to help you develop effective strategies for approaching and managing the writing demands of your course.

Bring your essay questions, plans, excerpts or feedback to discuss how to improve your writing structure and style.

Full information is available at FASS Effective Learning

Writing groups for PhD students

As part of the FASS research community, postgraduate research students are invited to participate in facilitated writing groups. The groups meet to regularly share and discuss writing in progress. These peer support initiatives help you to find your own voice, improve the clarity of your communication and prepare more generally for academic careers. Some departments also offer writing retreats where you can focus on achieving a specific writing goal and learn techniques for becoming more productive.

FASS Effective Learning Moodle

Each course module that you study has its own webpage (Moodle). In addition you can enrol on the FASS Effective Learning Moodle page and access information about the support we offer as well as resources relating to all aspects of study.


All the information you need about FASS Effective Learning is available on the FASS Effective Learning Moodle page.

You can email Joanne Wood, our Student Learning Advisor on