Student Support Services

We have many different support services on offer to ensure that you receive the best possible experience whilst studying at West Lothian College.

Covid-19 student support  

There are a range of student support measures in place to support you during this period. You can find information on them below.

Student support team

Some of the services provided by our student support team include:

  • Conversations about dyslexia, dyspraxia, autism or any other specific learning difficulty
  • Discussions with care experienced students/ applicants or young carers to let them know what additional support they can access
  • Meeting with students/ applicants to carry out needs assessments and create a support plan
  • Working with lecturers to plan support for students/ applicants
  • Helping students/ applicants studying/ applying for a course at H.E level apply for Disabled Students Allowance (DSA) applications
  • Discussing support with students/ applicants who have anxiety, or difficulties with their mental health
  • Responding to any other enquiries which relate to support, concerns or worries a student might have

Please email supportlearning@west-lothian.ac.uk for any help, support, guidance or even just a chat. 

Emergency support

If you are struggling with your mental health or have suicidal thoughts and require immediate attention please contact your doctor, NHS111 or one of the organisations listed here 

Other useful support and guidance

You can find a full list of useful organisations who can provide help and support here. Please be aware some of these organisations may be operating under amended opening hours due to the current situation.

The Student Support Team

Our Student Support Team are available to help you with any additional support you may need for your studies whilst at college.

We work with students across the college in all centres, providing help with all learning issues. Students can access one-to-one support or help in small groups. There is also support available for you if you have specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, a medical difficulty, a mental health difficulty or any other support need. In order to ensure you receive the best assistance possible our Student Support Team will meet with you to discuss what support you need and how we can help you.

Free counselling service

We have launched our new counselling service at the college. If you are a student, this free service is available to you and you can get up to six counselling sessions with a qualified counsellor who is a BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) member. The sessions will initially be offered on-line through Microsoft Teams where you can choose to talk via video, audio calls or by messaging. To access this service please e-mail student support services on counsellingservice@west-lothian.ac.uk. A counsellor will then contact you to arrange an appointment.

To find out more about our counsellors and the service read our introduction to the counsellors.

Personal Matters and Advice

We are here to help you with all aspects of college life and give you both practical and emotional support. We are fully committed to providing support or making referrals to agencies who can help you if you have any difficulties during your studies. We believe that inclusiveness is a fundamental principle and we are committed to widening access and participation for all students.

We also provide support if you are at at risk of withdrawing from your course. This could be due to problems in class, with other students, with lecturers or because of difficulties at home. This support can begin before you start your course to help you settle in, and can continue if you require it on a one to one basis or within class throughout the year. It is recognised that some students may experience personal difficulties during their time at college, such as homelessness, bereavement, changes to your mental or physical health, and issues with your confidence and self-esteem. A confidential service is available, where trained and experienced staff can offer you advice and support. Where appropriate and with your consent, you could be referred to an external agency for specialist support. We work with a range of support services who can provide specialist help and information. We are also happy to work alongside your lecturers or any other professional you are involved with, to ensure the best support possible is in place for you.

If you are struggling with any issues whilst you are at college or would just like to talk things through, please don't hesitate to get in touch by visiting us at Number 1 on the Square.

Our Student Support Officer will work with you to resolve any issues which are affecting your attendance. Please contact the team if you need to take time off for any reason.

Listening Time 4 U

Times of concern, anxiety, fear and sadness are a normal part of life yet often make us feel physically and/or mentally unwell.

LT4U offers a safe place where you can have the opportunity and time to explore your concerns or worries in confidence with a trained Listener.

At LT4U you will not be given any advice but hopefully being able to talk with an experienced Listener will help you better understand your feelings, find your own solutions and make your own decisions about what you want to do.

LT4U is NOT counselling.

Click here to find out more.

Carers

A carer is anyone who cares, unpaid, for a family member or friend who due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction problem, cannot cope without their support.

If you care for a family member, partner, friend or neighbour of any age please share this with us and we will be able to arrange the appropriate support that you will require while studying at West Lothian College. This will help us to arrange any extra support we can give you which will help you have a positive learning experience and resolve any issues which might arise whilst you are a student.

We have a team of staff who support students with various needs. If you are a carer, the two named staff who you should contact initially are:

Helen Wilson hwilson@west-lothian.ac.uk 

Lorna Jenkins ljenkins@west-lothian.ac.uk 

You can meet Helen and Lorna and discuss what being a carer means for you and what we can do to support you and ensure you can access college and have a good experience. If we know about your caring responsibilities we can be much more flexible with you in relation to attendance, time-keeping and submission dates. We will work alongside lecturers to ensure they are aware of the additional responsibilities you have.

We also work with Carers of West Lothian so if you are in touch with them, they could join you at an initial meeting with us. If you’re not already receiving support from Carers of West Lothian or you want to know more about what they do, here is a link which gives more information on the advice and services which they provide: http://carers-westlothian.com/

Email: office@carers-westlothian.com | Tel: 01506 448000

Here you can find info on support for carers both in West Lothian and other regions of Scotland: http://www.careinfoscotland.scot/topics/support-for-carers/carer-centres

Young Scot also provide support and a Young Carers Package which includes digital vouchers, access to subscriptions and exclusive opportunities– click on this link for more information: https://young.scot/get-informed/national/young-carers-package

If you are thinking about coming to College and would like to have a chat about support and what we can do to help you, please get in touch by emailing SupportLearning@west-lothian.ac.uk.

You can read more about the support available in our Carers Policy.

Also keep a look out on our College Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for news, updates and events for Carers.

Students from a care-experienced background

If you come from a care-experienced background (you are or have been in care, looked after or are a care-leaver), we have staff who are trained to understand your needs and we can offer tailored support.

For more information on any student support services mentioned or if you would like to discuss these, please contact the student support team on the first floor of Number 1 on the Square.

You can find information about bursaries for care-experienced students in further education here.

Equality & Diversity

For information on Equality and Diversity, please visit our Equality and Diversity page

ICT Support

We are aware that not everyone studying at West Lothian College will have a working knowledge of computers. With that in mind, you can find out more about tackling computers and getting online with our Introduction to ICT online guide.

External Support Services

We work closely with a range of groups and external organisations to provide you with support required. The agencies can offer specialist advice and support in a range of issues including mental health, drug & alcohol support, homelessness, counselling and victim support.

Mentally Healthy Community Page On Moodle

This page includes up to date information on college-based, local and national support as well as resources, hints and tips. Click here to view the page, this is also a helpful resource for Lecturers and Course Tutors. 

Other external support services

To find out more about student support services available at West Lothian College email supportlearning@west-lothian.ac.uk