Understanding Pre-application Open Days
Are all departments going to be represented on the day?
All departments that teach undergraduate courses will be hosting at least one talk on the day. Please note that the majority of sessions will not be delivered within the ‘home’ department buildings. We will be using the largest and most central spaces to deliver most of the sessions.
Are postgraduates welcome on Pre-application Open Days?
The Pre-application Open Days are for undergraduate courses, if you are interested in one of our postgraduate courses then we are holding Postgraduate Open Days. To register your interest in these events, go to www.durham.ac.uk/study/pg/visit/opendays/register.
Can I book by telephone?
We do not normally take telephone bookings unless you are experiencing technical difficulties. If you require assistance with your booking please call 0191 334 1000.
Do I need to stay for the entire day?
There is no need to stay after your final session has finished, however we do tend to find that guests will often need a whole day (9:00am-4:00pm) to see everything they wish to.
How can I view your student accommodation?
Student accommodation is part of our College provision and can be viewed by visiting our colleges on the day. Some colleges are fully catered whilst others are self-catered. To find out more about our colleges please visit: www.durham.ac.uk/experience/colleges.
I am interested in learning about the wider student experience such as sports, theatre, music and volunteering opportunities available at Durham. How can I find out more?
If you want to find out more about wider student activities you could visit the Marquee. Sport and Exercise Sciences talk listed under Academic Sessions relates to our degree programme so please look for ‘Performance and Participation Sport’ when considering wider student activities.
The Sports and Wellbeing Park will be open if you wish to undertake a self-guided tour of our modern sports facilities – open to all undergraduate students at Durham. Many of our colleges also have sport facilities and these will be shown to you during college tours.
I still have a question, can I contact someone?
Please contact Recruitment and Admissions on 0191 334 1000 or via our ask us form.
What are the Pre-application Open Days?
Our Pre-application Open Days provide an invaluable opportunity for prospective undergraduates to learn more about Durham University, the excellent standard of our teaching, our unique collegiate system and the quality of our facilities. It is a chance to meet staff from our departments, our colleges and a number of our students who can share their experiences.
If you are interested in our postgraduate courses please register your interest in these events by clicking here. We will then email you when the booking system opens.
What do I need to bring with me on the day?
You will need to bring a copy of your booking confirmation.
An umbrella may be helpful as many sessions and facilities are in different buildings, we recommend checking the weather forecast shortly before the Open Day.
You are welcome to bring your own refreshments although we cannot provide seating for consumption of refreshments brought on site. We do have a range of catering outlets on site.
There are some hills in Durham City and some areas are cobbled, as such we highly recommend wearing comfortable shoes.
What if I am unable to attend any of the Open Days?
We are also holding Discover Durham Tours in October which provide an alternative way to visit outside of our University wide Open Days– go to www.durham.ac.uk/undergraduate/live/visit/discoverdurham for more information and to register your interest.
Alternatively you may choose to visit independently and take a self-guided tour using our extensive guide available from reception desks. You can also download a copy from www.durham.ac.uk/undergraduate/live/visit/self.guided
What is the difference between a Presentation session (P), a Drop-in session (D) and a Tour session (T)?
‘P’ sessions comprise of a talk by staff outlining information specific to their area. For example admissions criteria, degree content and offering an overview of the course. Please see the session schedule in the online Open Day Guide for a full listing of all available talks.
‘D’ sessions are drop-in sessions which allow you the opportunity to informally ask academic members of staff any specific questions you may have about the course. Please note that only visitors who have booked to attend the Open Day can be accommodated in the drop-in ‘D’ sessions.
‘T’ sessions are tours of either department facilities or colleges, some of which require booking, some of which run on a drop-in basis.
For the full schedule please refer to the Open Day guide. You will notice that some of our sessions are student only and we thank other visitors for their understanding regarding this.
Which colleges should I visit during the Open Days?
Will all colleges be represented on the day?
In Durham City we have 17 colleges, and 16 of these will be represented on the day. Ustinov College is a postgraduate only college and so will not be featuring in these Open Days.
Booking onto a Pre-application Open Day
Can I attend more than one department talk?
Yes. Often prospective students will have a couple of subject areas they wish to explore prior to making an application. Parents needn’t attend the departmental talks, but are welcomed to do so. Priority will be given to potential students on the day.
Do you have a waiting list?
We don’t operate a waiting list. The booking system closes 1 week prior to the events, or when we have no more availability. We recommend booking early to secure your place. You can always cancel it if your plans change.
I have made a mistake with my booking, what should I do?
Please use the link provided in your confirmation email to amend any errors.
I haven’t booked can I still come to the Open Day?
We request all Open Day visitors book prior to arrival. If you turn up on the day without having booked then please bear in mind priority for session places will always be given to booked students, then to booked guests. There is a risk that there will not be a place available if you cannot provide evidence of booking.
I haven’t received an email confirming my booking.
In the first instance please check your junk/spam folder. If your booking confirmation is not there and it is not within your inbox within 24 hours then it is likely that your booking has failed. In this instance please make a new booking.
I’m holding an offer to start at Durham in the Autumn – can I book onto an Open Day?
Pre-application Open Days are intended to introduce the University to prospective applicants, but if you have missed the opportunity to visit us previously you are more than welcome to book and attend presentations and tours during Pre-application Open Days.
I’ve booked to visit but now I can’t make it, what do I need to do?
Please use the link provided in your confirmation email to cancel your place.
What do I do if there are no spaces left on the day I want to visit?
Unfortunately we are limited on the number of spaces on each Open Day. We do hold four Open Days throughout the year so we hope you can attend another of our events. Alternatively, you may wish to consider attending a Discover Durham Tour in October, November or December.
Why do I need to book?
Booking is required for all our Open Days. You can access the booking system at www.durham.ac.uk/opendays.
We often have many more people wishing to visit than we can comfortably accommodate, so we ask that all visitors (potential students and their friends/family) book to attend ensuring the health and safety of all guests is maintained during events. Sessions are delivered on a first come first served basis, with priority given to prospective students, and an event booking is required.
Do I need to register before attending a session?
You do not need to register your arrival before attending your sessions. Please ensure you have a copy of your booking confirmation with you (printed or on your mobile), as you may be asked to show this to allow entry into any talks or sessions you have booked.
Do you provide any help with the cost of travel or accommodation?
Although we aren’t able to support with the cost of accommodation we do offer a Travel Bursary for prospective students. Further details are available by reading the Travel Bursary guidelines available by clicking here.
How will I know where to go on the day?
The online Open Day guide lists all the available sessions on the day. Each session includes the building name, room number and a map reference number (indicated by a coloured circle). Use the Open Day Map to locate the building location, but if you need directions you could always ask one of our friendly Open Day Ambassadors, they are easily identified by their coloured t-shirts and hoodies. You can also get directions and assistance from one of our Information Desks or use the interactive Open Day Map.
If you are arriving by train, a free shuttle bus will be running directly from the train station to the Palatine Centre (map ref 60). Open Day Ambassadors will be available to direct you and to provide assistance.
I have a disability which may affect my visit to the University, what should I do?
We would like everyone to be able to attend the Open Day regardless of any disabilities they may have. The term ‘disability’ is used to include physical disabilities, specific learning difficulties, medical and mental health conditions. To enable us to provide the support you may need for your visit we strongly request that you contact us prior to making plans to travel to us on 0191 334 1000.
Disability Support at Durham University provides practical support and advice for students to minimize the effects of their disability and enable them to make the most of their time here. Disabled students at Durham can expect to take full part in all aspects of University life, including college, sporting, social, cultural and spiritual, as well as academic. Integration is seen as a key to success both at University and beyond. You may find it useful to speak to an adviser in Disability Support before your visit and as part of your university research. Advisors will be available at the Open Days within the Palatine Centre, Mountjoy Site.
Where can I find refreshments?
A detailed list of refreshment outlets and a map of their locations is in our Open Day Guide. Other facilities are clearly signposted. If in doubt please visit an Information Desk or ask a member of staff or student Open Day Ambassador.
You are also able to order a packed lunch through the link in your booking confirmation email. These can be picked up from the cafes and catering outlets in Durham.
Where can I park?
There are limited parking facilities within Durham City and we strongly encourage you to use public transport. You can find details of public Park and Ride facilities operated by the local authority and other commercial parking facilities on the Durham County Council website www.durham.gov.uk/transport.
With over 10,000 visitors arriving within the City we expect all facilities to be busy and cannot guarantee parking spaces will be available.
Should you have an access issue, please be in touch with us prior to your arrival on 0191 334 1000, or complete our ask us form
Where do I go when I arrive at the Open Day?
We will send you a pre-arrival email so that you can check-in online/ You can then go directly to your first session, alternatively you may wish to visit one of our Information Desks where you can pick up an Open Day guide, maps and other information.
Please note that there is no need to register upon arrival.
Where is the best place to stay?
There are many commercial accommodation options in Durham including three Premier Inns, a Radisson Blu Hotel, a Marriot Hotel, Swallow Hotel and a host of others. We cannot make recommendations and suggest you use www.thisisdurham.com to assist you.
You may wish to consider staying in Newcastle (if travelling from the North) or Darlington (if travelling from the south) and taking the train to Durham on the morning of the event. Trains from Newcastle and Darlington take no more than 20 minutes. A limited amount of University accommodation is offered during our Open Days, including a pre-bookable sandwich lunch to beat the queues on the day!
Where is the Science Site?
The Mountjoy Site is featured on the Open Day map and is the name for the area previously known as the ‘Science Site’. The renaming reflects the presence of the Law, Student Services and University Offices. Some signage may still refer to the ‘Science Site’.