Personal tutoring - Information for Students

While you're studying at Newcastle University, it is important to take full advantage of the different services and facilities on offer in order to make the most out of your degree. One of the mechanisms in place to support you is the personal tutoring system.

When you arrive at University, you will be assigned a personal tutor. This is usually an academic member of staff who acts as your first point on contact with the University. Personal tutors can provide you with information and advice, or signpost you to other relevant sources of advice and support, in order to help and support you during your time at Newcastle.

The role of a personal tutor, as described in the Personal Tutoring Framework, is to facilitate students' personal and academic growth. They are there to help with any issues you may have, from personal problems that could be affecting your studies, to giving advice when picking your modules, or simply just being available for a chat about how you're progressing.

As a minimum, if you are an undergraduate student you should meet with your personal tutor during Semester 1 of your first year at the University. Taught postgraduate students will also be offered a meeting. Personal tutors will usually also have office hours each week when you can drop in. You can also arrange meetings and book appointments with your tutor through the ePortfolio system.

If you're unhappy with your personal tutor for any reason, it might be possible to change your tutor - for more details about how to do this, check your school website. If you experience any problems during your time at Newcastle University, the Student Wellbeing Service website has lots of information.

The personal tutor system depends upon both the personal tutor and the tutee contributing to the relationship: a personal tutor can't be effective if tutees don't turn up to meetings! At the end of your degree, you might want to ask your personal tutor to provide you with a reference - so it is important that your personal tutor knows you well enough to be able to write one. This means responding promptly to any communication from your tutor, and telling them as soon as possible should you have any problems. By doing this, you can ensure that your personal tutor is in a position to give you the advice and support that you need.

"I found that my tutor was easy to talk to, and that I could discuss any worries I had about my exams or university life in general with him. Overall the personal tutoring programme was a great way for me to feel like I had support in the University from an experienced lecturer." Fiona, Biomedical Sciences BSc Honours

A leaflet with key information about personal tutoring for students and staff is available (PDF).

For further advice and information please visit