Health and safety

Many of the faculty and staff at SCIO have lived in Oxfordshire for years. During orientation, we will discuss basic Health and Safety guidelines with you to help you feel confident and safe during your time here. If you have any questions prior to departure, please contact your admissions advisor.


SCIO staff have many years of experience working with study abroad students both in Oxford and in other parts of the world. SCIO staff are available to support students throughout their experience in Oxford. Soon after arrival students are given a health and safety orientation to make them aware of the various resources available to them both through SCIO staff and outside resources. Various members of SICO staff are training in physical and mental health first aid.


Wycliffe Hall

Support for students can be provided by the staff at Wycliffe Hall. Katy Routh is Senior Tutor, Learning and Disability Support Lead, and Safeguarding Deputy Officer.


University Counselling Service

RVS students are eligible for support from the University’s Counselling Service. The staff comprises professionally trained and widely experienced female and male counsellors, psychotherapists, clinical and counselling psychologists, and a psychiatrist, all of whom are accustomed to helping people from many different backgrounds and cultures, and with a wide range of issues. The team has expertise in fields including psychodynamic counselling, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and group work and work in line with the Ethical Framework for Good Practice produced by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. The Counselling Service can address personal or emotional problems which may or may not be related to study but which may affect a student’s time at Oxford. It aims to help University students realise their full academic and personal potential through a talking therapy, and, if considered helpful, prescription medication. The service is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on weekdays, and RVS students may request an appointment by contacting the Counselling Service in person, or by phone or email.


Nightline Oxford

Nightline is a listening, support and information service run for and by students and aims to provide every student in Oxford with the opportunity to talk to someone in confidence. They are available to everyone from 8:00 pm to 8:00 am, but only during Oxford term time. Nightline does not provide advice or tell callers what to do: it is a service that listens and talks about whatever the caller wants, big or small, in complete confidence. Nightline also offers a wide range of information related in to mental health and general health issues. You can contact Nightline from 8:00 pm to 8:00 am by phone (270270) or in person.


Health Services

Students have access to professional medical, surgical, and psychiatric services at their own cost—paid for either when the system is used (one term students) or by a fee payable as part of the visa process (year-long students).


Know Before You Go

You should be physically and emotionally capable of handling the stresses involved in:

  • Living in a residence of multiple occupancy with shared bathrooms, kitchens, and communal spaces. Living (and other) spaces are not air-conditioned, though this is very rarely problematic in the cool British summers. Living and other spaces are heated in winter.
  • Historic buildings can present difficulties to students with mobility challenges but professional staff help with such challenges.
  • Managing and following a demanding study schedule with substantial independence, and attending lectures, one-on-one tutorials, and day-long field trips.
  • Experiencing potentially challenging personal, religious, and cultural learning, lectures, field trips, and assignments.
  • Living away from family, friends, and other support networks.



Oxford is generally a safe place in which to study and explore; nevertheless, you should minimise any risks by remaining alert and taking precautions. Read more on the University of Oxford website: Personal Safety. You can also familiarise yourself with any current travel or health advisories for the United Kingdom by visiting the U.S. State Department and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) websites.




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