Frequently Asked Questions

Courses and tutors


Who will my tutor be?

We try to provide former or current OU tutors who have taught your module or a close analogue in the past. This obviously can present problems for new courses or ones for which there are very few tutors, for example some level 3 courses.

If we cannot find an OU tutor we will try to find a suitable academic who has experience of teaching the course material at the appropriate level. If we cannot find a tutor then we will cancel the course, but give you some options which you might be interested in – see the FAQ 'What if SRW have to cancel?'.

Category: Courses and Tutors
What material is covered?

We ask our tutors to cover all examinable topics that the course might present. However this is easier for some courses than others, given time constraints, and it may be that not all topics will be covered. It is up to the tutor to provide revision material and it is usually discussed in the first session what students would like to be covered. 

Category: Courses and Tutors
What courses do you cover?

At the beginning of the year, we plan to cover all courses that start with an S for which there is a May or June examination and for which we know of a suitable tutor. In addition other courses may be covered if we know of a demand for them. Numbers have to be sufficient to make economic sense.

A list of proposed courses for May Revision Weekend 2018 will be found here.

Category: Courses and Tutors

Bookings / Payments


How do I book and pay?

You will need to register and then book your place via our website. We accept payment by bank transfer and cheque (although please see the FAQ about cheque payments for late bookings).

Due to the number of students, the annual nature of the event and the relatively few students who request it, we do not accept credit or debit cards.

As mentioned before, we are volunteers and there is no direct link between our bank account and our website, so it may take a few days for details about your payment to be reflected in your booking details.

If paying from abroad, or for further details, look at the pdf at the end of the 'Costs and Refunds' section here.

When do I need to book?

For bookings made more than roughly 12 weeks before the event we offer an "early bird" discount of £25, subject to a deposit of £50.

This is an incentive designed to ensure we get course bookings as soon as possible so we can firm up accommodation numbers and tutors.

After the early bird date, bookings are accepted, again subject to a £50 deposit, but no discount applies. Some six weeks before the event full payment is required and you will be sent a reminder that final payment is due several days before. See next FAQ for precise dates. 

When exactly is the deadline for the Early Bird discount / total payment?

Bookings will open Monday 8 January 2018 with an Early Bird period running until 0700 Wed 7 February and a booking deadline of 23 March 2018.

Help! I’ve put the wrong reference/no reference on my transfer/cheque.

Please send us a message to finance(at) with your name, (correct) SRW number, details about what went wrong, and the date cheque/transfer was sent and the bank it was sent from. We will find the wrong item, correct it, and inform you that we have.

A common mistake is to omit your SRW reference number. We can't then allocate the money to you, which, you will appreciate, is worrying for us and you. Please use your unique SRW number shown on your personal booking page, which is in the form of SRWxxxx where xxxx is a number.

Do you offer financial assistance towards course costs?

For those students who are in receipt of OU (emphasis on OU) financial assistance through the OU financial assistance office for the course they will be studying at SRW, we offer a £50 reduction in course fees.

To qualify you will need to send us a copy (via email or post) of the email/letter from the assistance office notifying you of your award for the course.

I need to alter my booking slightly (change email address/occupancy)

If you need to change the email address you signed up with, send an email to info(at) with your name, SRW number, old email address and new email address. We will contact you when changes have been made.

After certain dates, some checkboxes on the bookings page become read-only and require an SRW team member to alter them. Send an e-mail detailing your new requirements.

Have you received my cheque?

Cheques require a (voluntary) team member to get to the bank and deposit them. We collect a few together so your cheque may take some time to clear. We will inform you when your cheque has been received, and again when it has been cleared.

We suggest that electronic bank transfer is the easiest and quickest way to send your money.

Has my booking worked?

You need to press the save button on personal booking page after filling in all the details. Then conduct banking arrangements separately. When your deposit/full amount has cleared we will write back.

Is a course confirmed before I send money?

Courses won't be confirmed until after the booking deadline when we have seen the number of students wanting to study the course.

You need to sign up and send a deposit to show us there are sufficient numbers to make the course viable. In the event of a course not being viable you will get ALL your money back.

You can see the status of a course (full, need tutor, low numbers, etc) on the 'Courses & Status' page.

What happens if I miss the final payment date?

The final payment date is also the final date we review course numbers and make a decision on whether the course will run or not.

We only use fully paid up student numbers to make this decision so it is in your interest to pay by the due date, otherwise you may find your course cancelled.

If we cancel the course due to numbers we will repay any funds paid over. We do not issue second reminders and for an over-subscribed course you may find your place forfeited due to non-payment and given to another student.

What if I have failed to book and it is past the final payment date?

Assuming your course is still running, the course is not over-subscribed, and we can still get accommodation for you, we may exceptionally accept further bookings.

Immediate payment in full by bank transfer (cheques will not be accepted) will be required ONLY when permission is granted. Note that the website will be locked after the final payment date so you will need to request a late booking via the info@ email address. 

What if I have to cancel?

Please send us a message through the the messaging service ("Support") on your personal booking page or email info(at) with your name and SRW number, telling us you wish to cancel. 

Normally we would not offer any refund of funds paid in event of your cancellation. Saying that, we are a charity and will do our best to consider the circumstances for cancellation and consider a refund in part. You are responsible for your own travel arrangements and so suggest that you take out appropriate travel insurance if necessary.   

Venue / getting there


Where is the event held?

It is held at Yarnfield Park Conference Centre. Yarnfield has four large accommodation blocks as well as numerous classrooms where revision takes place. Whilst centrally located in the UK, it is also in the countryside and is poorly served by public transport, and there are very few alternative dinning and accommodation options nearby.

How is the minibus service run?

We aim to provide a free minibus or coach shuttle from around 3pm to 6pm on Friday that picks up at Stone railway station and drops off at Yarnfield. It is offered on a first-come, first served basis.

If you need an immediate pickup or arrive outside these times you will need to arrange a taxi and pay for it yourself. We may ask that when you register at Yarnfield you indicate which train you will be catching on Sunday and get a ticket for the free Sunday shuttle.

This is because we try to ensure that everyone gets to their train on time and we may need to book taxis in addition to the coach to cope with the rush.

This service is provided on a best-endeavours basis and we recommend that if you have a particular train to catch you book and pay for your own taxi.

Category: Venue / getting there
What sort of accommodation is available?

All of our allocated rooms at Yarnfield have one double bed in an ensuite bedroom.

It is possible for you to share your room with another student or a non-studying partner. Consider carefully how much free time you will have with your non-studying partner given the timetable!

If you have a disability and your disability requires a helper we can offer a specially reduced rate for their accommodation. Several bedrooms are wheelchair accessible, as is the main building that contains classrooms and the restaurant.

Students with limited mobility (such as on crutches) may find the distance between classroom, restaurant, bedrooms and car a little taxing.

If you have particular requirements/questions please do ask on your booking form. 

What sort of meals and refreshments are provided?

Free-flow tea and coffee are offered throughout the weekend during study time, including at arrival on Friday. If you choose the non-residential option then your course fee covers your delegate fee, tea & coffee and lunch on Saturday and Sunday. Students on residential packages also receive an evening meal on Friday as well as breakfast and evening meal on Saturday and breakfast Sunday.

Note we have no options that allow you to opt out of all meals, although of course you are free to forego the provided food.

Non-residents arriving early on Friday can purchase an evening meal directly from Yarnfield. Food is provided in a mostly self-service cafeteria and you are free to choose what dish you would like. A vegetarian choice is always provided, but it is available to everyone, so we recommend vegetarians choose an early opportunity for a meal rather than a late one.

If you have specific dietary requests please indicate them on your booking form and we will pass these on to Yarnfield.

I have special needs

We have produced a guide to the event for those students with special needs: click here to open PDF (50 kb)

Do you send out joining instructions?

Most of the contents of the joining instructions are available on this website. However we do send out joining instructions, including details of the latest timetable, via email around one to two weeks before the event.

When you arrive at Yarnfield, you will be given a timetable relevant to your own particular course within a matrix of all courses being offered.

We ask that you read this timetable carefully as times could differ from the ones we sent out with the joining instructions.

I haven't received the joining instructions

We will be emailing out the Joining Instructions (concise, summarised information about the venue, accommodation and studying) roughly two weeks before the event.

This will contain a pdf file and be sent from scirevteam(at)ymail(dot)com. Please put this in your safe senders list and check your spam mailbox if you don't receive it before then.

I will be early for registration at Yarnfield – what do I do?

The committee members who attend the event in person usually get there around 2pm. If you arrive earlier than this you can sit in reception.

Assuming Yarnfield have bedrooms available, it might be possible for you to collect your room key and settle into your room. We usually try to open registration by 3pm.

I will be late for registration – what do I do?

You can collect your room key anytime 24/7 from Yarnfield reception. Registration finishes about 6.45pm and if you arrive after that time and no organisers are about, you will find your registration envelope on a desk next to Yarnfield reception or at reception itself. It will contain your course timetable, including tutor, and classroom details, and your name badge. You will then need to locate your tutor room on the map on the desk.

The restaurant closes at 7pm and there are no alternative food outlets. Your first revision session usually begins shortly after 7pm so if you arrive after this you may miss part or all of the session.

How do I get there?

Each year we have held the event the bus service has changed. As far as we are aware, there is now no bus service on Sunday. Also, the bus companies change their ownership and timetable frequently so travel by bus is not recommended. The nearest railway station is Stone followed by Stafford. There are numerous taxi companies in both towns. Pre-booking, especially for Sunday, is recommended.

Note that we do intend to run a minibus or coach service - details of which are in another FAQ. Stone station is not suitable for wheelchair users, so Stafford would be your nearest railway station if you travel in a wheelchair and has wheelchair taxis available.

Can I bring my car to Yarnfield?

Yes. There is a large car park signposted from the entrance. There is significant building works going on at Yarnfield so signage sometimes needs to be looked out for!

There are several disabled car parking bays located within the car park close to the large water tower but these are still located some distance from the main entrance. 

Also bear in mind Friday afternoon motorway traffic and make allowances.



Who are the Science Revision Weekend?

We are a group of volunteers who together organise the annual event that you know as the Science Revision Weekend. None of us is paid. We are all current or former OU students.

We are both a limited company and a registered charity.

Category: General
What do I need to bring with me?

You will be spending most of your time in the classroom so comfort is key. Your tutor should be in contact with you a week or so before the event and will let you know exactly what course materials to bring, which might include course textbooks, but certainly the SEP from your module website and any previous exam papers you have purchased from OUSA.

Category: General
How do you keep in touch with me?

We use email for communication, and use the email address you provide when registering. As the event approaches, you will receive various emails from us and it is important that you set your spam filters so that receive these in your inbox.

It is not possible for us to send out our communications to multiple email addresses per student, but we can change your email address, see FAQ 'I need to alter my booking slightly'.

How is my personal information used and kept?

We only keep your information so that we can send you information on your booking, news of the event and any last minute changes as the event is being held. Once we know when bookings will open for the next event, we will send you one further email to say goodbye and letting you know the next year's event is open for bookings. We then delete all of your data from our system. We do not pass your email address to any third party.

Category: General
What is the format of the weekend?

There is one event held in May each year. There are roughly nine ninety-minute study sessions from Friday evening until Sunday mid-afternoon.

You will usually study one course for all of the nine sessions but we do allow you to swap if you really need to, subject to tutor agreement and available space.

From past experiences of several of the committee, trying to cover two courses on one revision weekend is not very easy.

Category: General
What if SRW have to cancel?

This is only likely to happen if, for some reason, either we have not been able to find a tutor or your tutor has suffered an accident or medical problem very close to date of the event and we have not been able to find another suitable substitute in time.

We will give you the option of a full refund (including deposit) or you can still attend and use the time for self-study and we will refund you the tutor component of your fee.

You are responsible for your own travel arrangements (and accommodation if non-resident) and so we suggest that you take out appropriate travel insurance if necessary.

Category: General