Cultural Issues

​Time Keeping

In the UK punctuality is very important especially in academic life and business. You should always be on time for lectures, classes and meetings with university staff whether this be face to face or online. If you are going to be late it is advisable for you to telephone or email, if you can. If you are late for an appointment do not be surprised if you are told to make another appointment and be seen on another day. Similarly, if you cannot make it to an appointment at all, it is always advisable to telephone or email to let the person know.

Getting things done - As a student in the UK you will find that there are a lot of things that you will have to do yourself that you may not have had to do before. This can be from cooking your own food in halls of residence, to managing your own bank account.

When you are in the UK as a student you are an adult who has to take responsibility for making all of your own personal arrangements. If you do not do them for yourself, there will be no-one to do it for you.

Being Polite

Saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ is considered to be an important part of British culture. If you need to ask for someone’s help, no matter who it is, it is polite to use the word ‘please’ and once someone has given you some help say ‘thank you’.

This may seem something very small but it can make all the difference in the way that people respond to you.


When you are at a reception desk, waiting to see your tutor, buying food in the canteen, in the supermarket, bank or wherever there are a number of people wanting to speak, or to receive service from an individual, it is polite to queue and wait your turn. In some countries this is not the case however, in the UK you will find that this is common practice and part of your daily routine.


Men and women play an equal role in society in the UK. There are no rules or regulations which prevent men or women doing specific jobs - both men and women alike carry out all roles at all levels. This is not only in Cardiff Met but in every organisation in the UK.


When you are talking to someone or are requesting their help or for a service from them, no matter who they are and no matter what role they have, you must be courteous. This can be from buying a train ticket, asking for information at a reception desk, asking for your tutors help and advice or speaking to an Immigration Officer.

It is considered to be very rude if you are not courteous.


In the UK, smoking is banned from enclosed public places. This means that people can only smoke in designated areas where there will be a smoking sign. This ban affects most public premises eg. Restaurants, pubs, bars, shops, cinemas, shopping centres, leisure centres, other enclosed workplaces and public transport. If you are a smoker, please ensure that you only smoke in the designated areas. Anyone who does not abide by these rules could face criminal charges and a fine.

Cardiff Met has been a clean air university for many years and has outlined it's plan to become completely smoke free in the near future.