Community information

At this time, the health and wellbeing of our staff, students and the communities around us continues to be our primary concern.

Kathryn Mitchell in the atrium of the University of Derby's Kedleston Road site
Professor Kathryn Mitchell

A letter from our Vice-Chancellor 

Following the recent announcement by the Prime Minister and subsequent new guidance for Higher Education institutions, I would like to update you on what this means for staff and students at the University. 

I can share with you the following:

We are encouraging all our staff and students to make use of our asymptomatic testing facilities before returning to site, and are recommending that everyone working or studying on campus is tested twice a week, three days apart, each week they are on campus.

We are very much looking forward to welcoming our staff and students back to campus and have worked very hard since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic to ensure our buildings are safe. All University sites will continue to operate in Covid-secure ways. 

While this continues to be a challenging time for us all, this is a positive first step towards a full return for our students when it is safe to do so.

Yours sincerely,

Professor Kathryn Mitchell DL

University of Derby Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive

The Vice-Chancellor also wrote a welcome letter in September to students and the wider community to explain what the University's plans were for the start of term, a letter in November with an update on the University's plans for managing the second lockdown period and a letter about plans for Christmas sharing the steps taken to ensure that students who wanted to go home for Christmas were able to do so safely for themselves and their families. The Vice-Chancellor's letter about returning to University in January 2021 with an update on plans for students and her most recent communication on the measures taken in response to the third national lockdown can also be read. 

How we are helping the local community

As a university, we take the civic role we play seriously and are committed to supporting our local communities through these challenging times. We are in the fortunate position of having a wealth of expertise and knowledge to share.

We are already working with, and providing a wide range of support to, the NHS, local councils, organisations and communities across the city and county. Here are some examples of how we are responding to the crisis.

Discover our latest Covid-19 information for students and staff

Research into our connection with nature is helping staff at UK's largest conservation charity to understand how people experience places.

Picture of Covid 19 stats chart

Richard Self, recently ranked the UK's second most influential technology academic, criticises the data model used to analyse coronavirus pandemic information. 

A man in a sports hoodie wearing a facemask

International review of research concludes that wearing a face mask while exercising is safe, including for those undergoing rehabilitation for respiratory conditions, such as Covid-19.

Photo of Kedleston Road in the summer

The University of Derby is to open an asymptomatic testing centre as part of the government’s UK-wide continuing drive to increase the availability of mass testing and to ensure that students who want to go home for Christmas can do so safely.

An artists at Banks Mill Studio painting.

Banks Mill Studios is hosting a digital Open Studios to showcase the works of its artists and designers this weekend (28-29 November)

Research programme funded by the Economic and Social Research Council will involve studies in the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands.

Duchess looks at how the University is supporting students through the pandemic and discusses new online service for student mental health.

Graphic showing a coronavirus cell

Historians consider how future generations may see the pandemic in the first of a series of online talks focusing on the impact of coronavirus

Researchers from the University of Derby and University of Nottingham have launched the first research project focusing on those who have had to transition to home working, as a consequence of the lockdown measures in the UK.

University hits 100,000 enrolments mark for its range of Massive Open Online Courses 

Useful resources

Below are some resources you may find helpful.


Whether you are facing the challenge of home schooling, or worried about your mental health during the crisis, our expert blogs offer sound advice and helpful tips to make life at home a little easier.

Expert comment

Our academics have been featuring regularly in the news, providing their expert perspective and advice on various issues related to Covid-19, ranging from its impact on BAME communities to effect of lockdown on the environment. For more information contact

For businesses

At this challenging time, we wish to highlight that we remain as committed as ever to working with you and supporting our business community. We are using technology to ensure we can continue to collaborate and are committed to doing all we can to make sure any restrictions we face do not impact on the projects and activities we deliver.

If you would like to find out more about how we can support your business, please speak to your usual contact person or our Business Enquiry Team via

During this challenging time, support is available from a variety of expert sources. In addition to contacting us, excellent advice and guidance is also provided by the Government, D2N2 Growth HubCBI and East Midlands Chamber of Commerce.


Find out more about how local stakeholders are supporting the recovery efforts across the city:

Online learning resources

The University of Derby has seen a steep rise in the number of people accessing its free online courses at this time. These short online courses, also known as MOOCs (massive open online courses) are free to take part in and are open to everyone regardless of age, education level and location.

Mental Health Toolkit for businesses

The current coronavirus (COVID-19) has created a time of uncertainty and concern that is affecting people’s mental health.  It is essential that individuals have the tools to manage their mental health and wellbeing and to feel able to support others too. The University has developed webinars and short courses as a mental health toolkit, to assist employers and employees to look after their mental health during this difficult time.

Coronavirus information for current students and staffCoronavirus information for applicants