Updates and advice for all students during the current outbreak of coronavirus COVID-19.
Subject and class information
The University of Melbourne has transitioned to a virtual campus model and we’ve changed the way you attend classes and engage with your University community.
From 30 March until the end of Semester 1, all classes will be online so you can study remotely. Please refer to the LMS for the details about your classes and assessment for the remainder of Semester 1.
We have plenty of digital tools and services to help you study online and off campus. Visit the Studying remotely page for information on how best to manage your studies while you're not physically going to classes.
Changes to the Academic Calendar
Extension of Semester One and revised 2020 University calendar
The University has extended Semester 1, 2020 by one week, to finish on 7 June 2020. One week of Swot Vac will follow with the three week assessment period now commencing on Monday 15 June. The dates for the Winter study period and Semester 2, 2020 will be pushed back by one week. See key dates or download a detailed revised Academic Calendar.
Please continue to refer to the Handbook and LMS for up-to-date information on all non-standard study periods (e.g. intensives) and seek advice from the relevant Subject Coordinator regarding the relevant dates for these subjects.
Dates for standard Semester 1 subjects (e.g. May intensive)
- These subjects have a revised census date and fee due date of 30 April which is the new due date to access a FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP loan
- You can withdraw without financial penalty up to and including 30 April
- You can withdraw without academic penalty up to and including 5 June
- If you withdraw from subjects after 5 June, you will need to meet the usual criteria for late withdrawal and fee remission in special circumstances
- There will be no impact to you accessing FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP – the revised census date allows eligible students more time to either pay upfront or access a HELP loan
Scholarship payments that are scheduled for 17 April will not be affected by changes to the revised census date. See Scholarship Payments for more information on key Scholarship dates.
Dates for non-standard Semester 1 subjects
We are reviewing census dates for non-standard subjects commencing prior to 30 June and with a census date of 20 March or later. Where possible we will revise census dates proportionate with the changes made to the standard subject census date. You will be notified via email to your student account of any changes to the key dates for your enrolled subjects by Friday 17 April.
Dates for Year-Long subjects, Year-Long Extended subjects and Term 1-4 subjects
The census date and last to withdraw without fail for these subjects won’t be changed. See the subject entries in the Handbook for the dates.
- Week commencing Monday 30 March: one full week of teaching
- Monday 6 April to Sunday 19 April: extended Easter non-teaching period (commencing four days earlier than previously scheduled).
Lectures, tutorials and interactive seminars
All lectures, tutorials, and interactive seminars are now online and are available through the Learning Management System (LMS).
We are waiving any physical attendance requirements that may have been relevant to your subjects at the beginning of the semester. Active class participation requirements will remain in place for the online delivery of your classes, so make sure you check to see if this is a requirement in your subject. Check the LMS for details.
Specialist and practical classes
Specific arrangements for specialist classes, practical classes, performances and design studios delivered via our virtual campus will vary from subject to subject. Check the LMS for details.
Decisions regarding placements underway in health or educational settings will be made in conjunction with your University of Melbourne supervisor and supervisors in your clinical or other work-based environment. If your placement should no longer go ahead, alternative arrangements will be made wherever possible.
The Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences (MDHS) will selectively stop some clinical placements for a limited time. MDHS has contacted students outlining the context for this decision and information regarding course completion and to assist you with continued engagement in your studies.
Assessment and exams
The University is now in the process of replacing ‘in-place’ examination with remote examination and assessment conducted online. You will be advised through the LMS on the new assessment arrangements for your subjects.
You also need to be aware of any specific participation requirements for your classes and act accordingly.
International students deciding to return to their home country and study remotely, should also be aware of the Australian Government’s travel advice and restrictions, which may, prevent you from returning to campus depending on how the COVID-19 situation develops. For any visa enquiries, you should contact the Department of Home Affairs.
Manage your course
The University’s policy and procedures for Special Consideration will continue to apply. These cover a wide range of circumstances that may have affected student progress.
Given the current emergency, students who have been affected by the COVID-19 circumstances but are unable to provide documentary evidence (e.g. caring for someone who has been diagnosed) may submit a statutory declaration explaining how their study has been affected. Students who were ill during the semester but did not seek medical advice in order to not burden the health system may also submit a statutory declaration explaining how their study has been affected. Of course, students who consider they have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should immediately contact medical practitioners.
A statutory declaration is a written statement that you sign and declare to be true and correct in the presence of an authorised witness.
Special Consideration will not normally be considered in relation to the University’s transition to a Virtual Campus for teaching, learning and assessment. Note too that self-isolation without having contracted COVID-19 would not normally be grounds for special consideration. However, where there are special circumstances these will be considered on a case by case basis.
Semester 2 arrangements
The University is actively planning to resume on campus learning in Semester 2 for all undergraduate, graduate, domestic, international, commencing and returning students. Should the COVID-19 situation continue to develop, the University will advise students of any changes that may be made to the Semester 2 teaching program as a result.
To support future students, we are working through a range of scenarios to minimise the impact that COVID-19 may have had upon your plans to commence studies at the University of Melbourne. We will post updates on this page as advice becomes available including information about:
- What happens if your qualifying degree, associated prerequisites or other entry requirements for graduate coursework and research are impacted.
- What happens if your final year secondary school qualification has been significantly disrupted.
- What happens if you are unable to sit an entry exam for entry into a course, including English language tests.
- The provision of conditional Confirmations of Enrolment (CoEs) for international students where final documentation might not be available
- What the course offer acceptance process for international students will be, including arrangements for fee deposits.
Graduate research students can apply for and proceed with a Semester 2 commencement where you can effectively engage in your proposed studies with appropriate supervision and guidance. However, enrolment in laboratory-based projects or disciplines will require the approval of the relevant Dean or their delegate. If you need to defer your commencement, you should discuss this with your supervisor.Please note that the Semester 2, 2020 academic calendar has been adjusted following the changes to Semester 1, 2020 academic calendar.
Current students should continue to plan for studies in Semester 2 so that you can make progress toward the completion of your course.
Please note that the Semester 2, 2020 academic calendar has been adjusted following the changes to Semester 1, 2020 academic calendar.
Students affected by travel restrictions at the start of Semester 1 2020, who were unable to arrive on campus by 30 March have had their fee due date extended to 31 May 2020. These students were notified by email on 12 March 2020.
All other students who are currently enrolled in a standard Semester 1 subjects have had their fee due date extended to the census date of 30 April. Refer to Changes to the Academic Calendar (above) for more information.
Due to system limitations the student invoice & Statement of Liability display the old fee due dates. Please be assured that 30 April 2020 is the fee due date and census date for standard Semester 1 subjects. We apologise for any confusion caused.
What happens to your paid deposit (new students)
If you are not enrolled in Semester one, 2020 subjects, your deposit will be credited towards your future tuition fees, and will be reflected on your fee account statement balance in my.unimelb.
What happens if you withdraw from paid subjects
If you are affected by COVID-19 travel restrictions and withdraw from Semester one subjects you will not need be liable for tuition fees, even if you withdraw from them after their census date. If you withdraw from subjects, the University will:
- Facilitate a credit against your future enrolment or a refund
- Remove withdrawn subjects from your academic transcript
Support and funding
Find out what support you could be eligible for if you're experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19.
COVID-19 Emergency Support Fund
The Emergency Support Fund is designed to provide relief and support for students who have experienced financial hardship as a result of COVID-19, and can provide funding of up to $7500.
Find out more about application requirements and eligibility on the Emergency Support Fund page.
COVID-19 Student Support Grants
The Student Support Grants recognise the financial impact you might have experienced by COVID-19 travel restrictions, and is here to help you cover any unanticipated expenses.
How does the Emergency Support Fund relate to the Student Support Grant for COVID-19?
The Emergency Support Fund is designed to provide assistance to students who have experienced financial hardship as a result of COVID-19.
The Student Support Grant is aimed at assisting students who have incurred unanticipated costs as a result of the Australian government COVID-19 travel restrictions.
I have already applied for the COVID-19 Student Support Grant for travel affected students. Can I apply for this funding?
If you are experiencing financial hardship that is in addition to the impact you have experienced as a result of COVID-19 travel restrictions, you can apply for funding from the COVID-19 Emergency Support Fund. There is a combined upper limit of $7500 support across both grants. If you have already received some funding through the Student Support Grant, you can apply for up to the difference in funding through the Emergency Support Fund.
Will the University do anything about fees?
Tuition fees are not changing. The University has implemented a large-scale exercise to transfer teaching, learning, assessment and student support into formats that can be accessed effectively at a distance. We are doing this in a way that maximises the opportunities for most students to study effectively and successfully, and to therefore graduate on time, while maintaining the vitally important quality and standards of our degrees. Our staff are adapting teaching materials and student services, including library services to online channels, and strengthening our virtual campus. We will maintain connectivity and community between students, and with their academic staff.
In short, we will maintain the high standards of our curriculum and continue to provide a top-quality education commensurate with a University of Melbourne degree.
We have extended the census date and fee due date for all standard Semester 1 subjects until 30 April, which is in line with the revised timelines for accessing a FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP loan to provide students with flexibility.
Health and wellbeing
What to do if you think you have COVID-19
If you suspect that you may have COVID-19 do not come to campus. If you are feeling unwell, you can use the Department of Heath’s self-assessment tool to help you decide if you should be tested.
If you are experiencing common symptoms including fever, breathing difficulties such as breathlessness, cough, sore throat and fatigue, follow advice from the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), call the dedicated hotlines on 1800 675 398 (Victoria) or 1800 020 080 (national) OR contact the University Health Service or your regular General Practitioner. Once you have sought medical advice you should then let the University know by emailing Campus Community. A privacy collection notice (PDF 102.0 KB) is available.
If someone you know appears ill and is showing symptoms, encourage them to seek medical assistance.
If you have recently travelled internationally or have had close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 please take note of health advice and self-isolate in line with advice provided by DHHS and the Australian Government Department of Health.
The University is committed to supporting any University community member who contracts COVID-19. By letting our Campus Community team know your situation, we can support you by offering practical advice, links to university services, conducting wellbeing checks, answering COVID-19 related questions and assisting you through the isolation process.
The University of Melbourne COVID-19 Health Service Hotline
The University Health Service now has a dedicated COVID-19 Hotline for University of Melbourne students and staff members. This is designed to provide an additional source of advice and information for members of our community who have concerns about their health in relation to COVID-19 and link them to the appropriate health service if required.
Please contact this hotline for advice if you:
- Are feeling unwell and have COVID-19 symptoms (fever, breathing difficulties, cough, sore throat, fatigue and/or tiredness)
- Have recently returned from overseas
- Have been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19
- Are a health care worker or aged care worker, or
- Live in a residential college or student accommodation.
COVID-19 Health Service Hotline
Phone: 03 8344 6904
Hours: 8.45am – 5pm, Monday to Friday. For assistance outside these hours call the DHHS coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398.
The Health Service now offers telehealth consultations as well as in-person appointments. You can book a telehealth appointment if you:
- Are in Australia (consultations cannot be provided to anyone offshore)
- Don’t require in-person assistance (eg if the doctor doesn’t need to conduct an examination).
If you are unsure if a telehealth is right for you, please call (03) 8344 6904 to check your eligibility.
To book a telehealth appointment:
- Call (03) 8344 6904 or book via the online booking system
- Indicate YTH in your appointment reminder confirmation text.
Taking care of your mental health
In situations that are uncertain and evolving such as this, you may experience stress, anxiety, or sadness. Counselling and Psychological Services (CAPS) have developed a tipsheet on how to manage feelings of stress or distress about COVID-19. You can also explore other helpful resources on looking after your mental health and wellbeing during this challenging time.
The University has a range of health and wellbeing services so if you need support, please contact:
Practising good hygiene
The Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) provides the following good hygiene tips:
- You should pay close attention to good hand hygiene. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water, especially before eating and after using the toilet
- Cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing with a tissue - or cough into your elbow. Dispose of the tissue into a bin and then wash your hands afterwards
- Face masks are not recommended for use by members of the public in Victoria, although anyone who wants to be cautious can of course choose to wear one
- Avoid touching your face.
Social distancing is recommended by the Australian Department of Health to reduce community transmission of novel coronavirus COVID-19.
Social distancing is a way to stop or slow the spread of infectious diseases. It means less contact between you and other people.
These simple, common sense actions help reduce risk to you and to others. They will help to slow the spread of disease in the community.
- Stay at home if you are sick or unwell
- Keep a distance of 1.5 metres between you and other people whenever possible
- Don't shake hands, hug, or kiss as a greeting
- Minimise physical contact, especially with people at higher risk such as older people and people with existing health conditions
- Respect temporary changes to seating and room configurations implemented to enhance social distancing
- Utilise hand sanitisers where available, and wash your hands frequently
- Use tap and pay rather than handling money
- Exercise good sneeze/cough hygiene
- Don't share food with anyone else
Centrelink and part-time study
For domestic students on Youth Allowance, Newstart or Abstudy unable to complete a full time load in semester 1, Services Australia have confirmed that there will be no changes to your payment due to the impact of COVID-19. Check here for more information.
If you don't have access to a laptop or desktop device to enable remote learning, you can borrow a University device on loan. The University has reconditioned ~130 laptop and desktop devices for student loan. These are not new devices but have been reimaged to connect to all University online services. Devices will be sanitised prior to pick up.
To access these devices, please register your interest with the Financial Aid team. The team will assess your requirements and connect eligible students to the device deployment team to arrange a pick up time and place, mindful of social distancing protocols. Devices will include accessories (keyboard, mouse, power cords).
Cybercriminals are taking advantage of community concerns around COVID-19 and there are reports of phone calls, text messages and emails pretending to be from the World Health Organization and government agencies to steal personal information, seek donations and install malicious software. Find out how to protect yourself from these threats on the University's cybersecurity web page.
Students not eligible for Medicare
The Department of Health and Human Services advises that overseas travellers who fall ill in Australia (and are not eligible for Medicare) often have health or travel insurance.
For those who do not have adequate insurance coverage, Victorian hospitals will waive the costs of treatment. This includes waiving payment and debt recovery procedures for ambulance transfers of people suspected to have coronavirus (COVID-19), who are taken to Victorian hospitals for assessment.
These arrangements have been put in place to ensure payment issues are not a barrier for people from overseas with symptoms seeking early medical advice.
Staying active with Melbourne University Sport
Melbourne University Sport is committed to supporting students and staff to stay active through the COVID-19 pandemic.
We have compiled a number of different resources and fitness opportunities for the University community to stay healthy and connected in the comfort of your own home. Visit the Staying Connected page for great ideas on how to keep fit, and free fitness tutorials that you can follow at home.
Travel, visas and accommodation
The Australian Government has issued a COVID-19 travel alert recommending Australians: “Do not travel overseas at this time. If you wish to return home, do so as soon as possible”.
All non-essential domestic and international travel has been cancelled. The Australian Government advises all Australians not to travel overseas at this time. If you are already overseas and you wish to return home, do so as soon as possible. Further information is available from the Smart Traveller website. All travellers arriving into Australia from international destinations need to self-isolate for 14 days in line with Australian Government requirements.
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Study overseas (including exchange)
Our primary focus is to ensure your ongoing health and wellbeing during these challenging times.
For those students currently studying away from the University, and further to the most recent coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advice issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on overseas travel, you should now make arrangements to depart your host location.
Below is some information to assist you in making your plans.
- In the first instance, contact your airline to find out the costs to change your existing reservation.
- It may be cheaper to purchase a new flight.
- The University will assist you to recoup the costs through travel insurance.
- Where costs are not covered by travel insurance, you may be able to apply for financial assistance from the University.
- Many universities are making arrangements to complete their semester online. We recommend you continue to engage in your studies if possible.
- If you are not able to continue your exchange through your host institution, you will need to enrol in Semester 1 subjects at University of Melbourne and engage in online classes immediately. For up-to-date information and advice visit the COVID-19 information for all students page.
- You can apply for a Leave of Absence, if you believe this is the best course of action for you.
For more information please contact your adviser following the instructions below.
Students on exchange who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents
The Australian Government announced that from 9pm, Australian Eastern Daylight Time (AEDT), Friday 20 March all non-residents and non-Australian citizens will no longer be able to enter Australia.
Based on advice received from the Australian Government, we suggest that if you are a non-resident or non-citizen you should seek support from the Embassy/Consulate of your home country in your host location. You are encouraged to consider returning to your home country, following instructions to continue your studies where this option has been made available to you. If you remain in your host location, you should follow the advice of your host university and local authorities, and advise us of your location.
Visa advice for international students
Semester 1 study load
Student visa holders are normally required to have a full-time study load of 50 points (4 subjects) in each half-year period. We recognize that COVID-19 may impact your ability to maintain a full load this semester. If you wish to reduce your study load for semester 1 you can do so by providing a personal statement in lieu of supporting documentation. You can submit a request here.
Please note: reducing your study load now might extend the time you need to complete your course, which means you may need to request a new CoE before the current due date expires. Our course advising team can help you plan out your remaining subjects and explore options such as ‘catching up’ by enrolling in winter or summer subjects.
Can I return overseas to study or take a leave of absence?
International students who wish to return to their home country can continue their studies remotely for the remainder of semester 1. You need to stay enrolled to maintain a current CoE. If you choose to return home to study, you must ensure you are able to actively participate in required learning activities, noting this may include classes scheduled in at AEST times which require virtual attendance.
International students who wish to return home for semester 1 and take a leave of absence for the remainder of the semester are able to do so under compassionate and compelling reasons.
International students should also be aware of any possible restrictions or risks with returning to home countries, as well as the Australian Government’s travel advice and restrictions, which may prevent you from returning to campus. The University will continue to monitor this situation and how it might impact students’ ongoing enrolment. For any visa enquiries, you should contact the Department of Home Affairs.
Traveling to Australia
The University does not in any way provide travel advice, or encourage the option of travel to Australia via a third country. We recommend that you follow and comply with Australian Government advice regarding health requirements and travel to Australia. As the Australian Government advises, Australian travel restrictions will be reviewed and may change at short notice.
If you had already booked accommodation, please contact your accommodation provider as soon as possible to discuss options related to your booking. You will need to contact them directly if you wish to change or cancel your booking.
If you have booked with University Accommodation
Please use the details below to contact your accommodation provider:
- 303 Royal Parade
E: 303-RoyalParade@unimelb.edu.au P: 9109 0900
- University Apartments
E: email@example.com P: 9109 0900
- UniLodge Lincoln House
E: firstname.lastname@example.org P: 9113 8200
- International House
E: email@example.com P: 9347 6655
- Medley Hall
E: firstname.lastname@example.org P: 8344 5476
If you have booked a private rental
Please contact your accommodation provider or real estate agent to discuss your situation and tell them when you may arrive in Melbourne. They can advise on private rental arrangements when you are still overseas.
For further information and advice regarding your tenancy agreement, including changing or cancelling a lease, visit the Consumer Affairs Victoria's page for international students.
For additional support, you can contact the University of Melbourne housing team through the following methods:
- 303 Royal Parade
For information specific to graduate researchers please visit our dedicated graduate research FAQs.
University library services have moved to virtual delivery, with libraries across all campuses closed until further notice.
Physical access to the Archives and Special Collections is not possible at this time. However, once we re-open materials can once again be requested into the Reading Room for use. You can continue to access the rich range of digitised collections content and explore our diverse holdings which are all accessible through our catalogues. If you have specific enquiries relating to the University of Melbourne Archives you can contact staff on email@example.com
We will continue to fill requests for:
- Interlibrary Loans that can be delivered electronically, but we won’t be able to supply physical items. For assistance please email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Previously digitised theses, but we won’t be able to digitise physical items, nor provide a self-service until further notice. You can get assistance by contacting us by email at email@example.com
Will the library be open after 24 March?
University library services is moving to virtual delivery. In-person services at library buildings across all campuses will close from this evening, Tuesday 24th of March until further notice.
We are still here to help you! You will have access to all our eBooks and online journals and databases - 96% percent of the library’s journal holdings are online. In addition, we also have access to over 1.5 million eBook holdings.
Can I borrow physical books/items from the library? Can I borrow a book from the high use collection?
You will be able to borrow items until we close tonight 24 March. Please check our closing times here: https://library.unimelb.edu.au/library-opening-hours
After that the libraries will be closed until further notice.
While our libraries are closed you do not need to return your loan items and we have waived all fines incurred in March. Fines will not be incurred while libraries are closed.
If you really need to return your items please return them to the Baillieu Library.
I have items out on loan. What do I do? I want to return my items, how do I do this?
While our libraries are closed you do not need to return your loan items and we have waived all fines incurred in March. Fines will not be incurred while libraries are closed.
If you really need to return your items please return them to the Baillieu Library.
- I am waiting for my BONUS+ or Interlibrary Loan to arrive. Will I still be able to get it?
- I have BONUS+ items on loan. How do I return or renew these?
I need help, how do I contact the library if I can’t come to campus?
Also have a look at our self-help online resources including Library Guides and information on referencing at https://library.unimelb.edu.au/
I’m having IT trouble. Where can I get help?
Have a look at our new guide on studying online https://studentit.unimelb.edu.au/studying-remotely
The friendly folk at Student IT are here to help too. Visit https://studentit.unimelb.edu.au/ to contact them Chat or to access other helpful online resources
I want a physical book but the libraries are closed. How do I get a copy?
Have a look to see if we have an electronic copy (ebook) of the title you want.
If you couldn’t find an electronic version of that title, we may have other eBooks that might be relevant to you. Here’s a link to how to find eBooks: https://unimelb.libguides.com/ebooks
I have fines payable. What do I do about these?
We have waived all fines incurred in March and fines will not be incurred while libraries are closed.
I need to request and items that I can only view in the Reading Room, can I do that?
Physical access to the Archives and Special Collections is not possible at this time. However, once we re-open materials can once again be requested into the Reading Room for use.
If you have specific enquiries relating to the University of Melbourne Archives you can contact staff on firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can search our catalogue or for digitised items via our website.
Student services and Stop 1
Student services continue to be delivered via virtual channels. Students can access advice and support from Stop 1 via phone and chat appointments, online workshops and email enquiries. Our careers and employability, academic skills, global mobility, course planning and more will all be delivered remotely, with extended contact hours available in some cases.
Early childhood services
In line with the State Government’s advice, childcare services are an essential service and will continue to operate.
The Health Service will continue to provide in-person services to University staff and students.
To help you get setup and connected, ready for online learning, the Student IT team have created a new webpage, Studying Remotely. The team are here to help seven days a week, through our Online Chat function and also with Support Tickets. For a quick response during the day, start a chat with us. After hours or for something that might be a bigger issue, submit a ticket and we will help as soon as we can. All of these services are available from the Student IT website.
From midnight Monday 30 March, all buildings other than those designated for priority research or essential service delivery will be closed for access. Exceptions may apply to some graduate research students involved in priority research.