Life at Borders College

Read on for more information on where to stay, how to travel and more about our Student's Association.

Students outside College

Getting around - Transport for Students

Borders College delivers its programmes using a blended learning approach where students will be required to attend practical classes on campus alongside online delivery for other aspects of the course. 

It is our intention, wherever possible, to provide a travel pass to those students eligible to receive one to enable travel to the campus for the day(s) required for practical attendance.

In support of the Scottish Governments green agenda and our own sustainability strategy, we encourage students to make use of the public bus services provided by various contractors throughout the Borders area. In addition, students living along the Borders Railway also have train travel as an option.

You can find more information regarding bus travel provided by Border Buses here. We recommend students download the Border Buses mobile app. This will provide the latest service information, timetables and seat availability on each of their services.

Traveline Scotland is also a very useful resource for planning journeys.  It covers all public transport options throughout the region and beyond.  This resource is available here.

For students who live on the Borders Railway route, regular services run throughout the day between Edinburgh and Galashiels/Tweedbank. The Scotrail website provides information regarding safe travel, timetables and service updates.  This information is available here.

Travel allowances will not be available to students who live within a 3-mile radius of the Campus that their course is based on or live within the town in which the Campus that your course is based is located.

Information for students about eligibility to concessionary fares and free travel is available at A Guide to Concessionary Travel (transport.gov.scot)

Exceptional circumstances

Only in exceptional circumstances will an alternative travel allowance be considered. E.g. medical circumstances or caring responsibilities.  If you wish to be considered for an alternative to a travel pass then please email studentfunding@borderscollege.ac.uk explaining why.

Accommodation

Borders College does not offer College managed student accommodation.  For students wishing to make their own, independent arrangements for accommodation, Galashiels (and the surrounding area) has a fairly vibrant market in terms of suitable accommodation for students.

It is important to note that the College does not inspect any of the properties advertised and does not make recommendations or enter into any agreement on behalf of a student.  Student Services staff are however happy to give you some advice and guidance should you want it.

Always try to look for a flat run by an accredited agency/landlord as they have committed to a higher standard of management. It usually takes several weeks to find accommodation so leave plenty of time and we would strongly advise against sending any money to secure a flat before seeing it in person.

Finding a private rented flat:

  • Take your time and don’t just take the first flat you see
  • Always view a property before you move in and try not to go alone
  • Check with the owner what furniture and equipment will be included and all relevant licenses are in place
  • If the owner says they will repair or replace any items before you move in, make sure you get this in writing
  • Do not sign a lease if you are not 100% happy with it – it is a legally binding document
  • Remember that an agency cannot charge you for viewing or enquiring about a property or for preparing a lease
  • Ensure that any necessary licensing and registration is in place e.g. HMO Licence

Some local property search websites to consider:

Other useful websites include:

Welcome to our Students' association

Borders College Students’ Association (BCSA) is a student-run organisation whose purpose is to represent and support Borders College students. BCSA is led by a team of elected student representatives, known as the Executive Team. They work on your behalf to identify issues that affect students and draw them to the College’s attention. They will run campaigns, represent your views and make sure your opinion is heard by college management. We also run loads of fun activities and events throughout the year, keep your eye on our social media for updates.

If you are experiencing any difficulties at college, get in touch or pop into the office. It’s our job to listen and to help. If we can’t help directly, we can always refer you to someone who can.

Whether it’s being a Class Rep, Lead Rep, Executive Member, Student President or even just volunteering a few hours in the office, there are loads of ways to get involved with your Students’ Association. Simply get in touch and we’ll take it from there!