Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Welsh Language Standards?

The Welsh Language Standards is a statutory duty which explains how the University is expected to provide specific services through the medium of Welsh, ensuring that the Welsh language is not treated less favourably than the English language.

The services provided include the education provided to students and the administrative provision offered to students, staff and the public. There are 182 Standards that Aberystwyth University must comply with and each Standard describes how specific tasks should be carried out in Welsh.

The aim of the Standards is to:

  • Provide clarity to organisations regarding their duties to provide services in Welsh.
  • Provide clarity to Welsh speakers regarding the services which they can expect to receive in Welsh.
  • Ensure consistency in terms of services in Welsh and to improve their quality.

Why is the University implementing Welsh Language Standards?

Over 120 public organisations in Wales (e.g. Local Authorities, Universities, Health Boards) comply with the Welsh language standards. There is a statutory duty on Universities in Wales to comply with the Welsh language standards in accordance with the Welsh Language [Wales] Measure 2011.

The Welsh Language Standards superseded the Welsh Language Scheme that Aberystwyth University previously operated until 1 April 2018 under the Welsh Language Act 1993.

What is the University's view on the Welsh Language Standards?

The University aims to create an environment in which all members of the University and the comunity can feel at ease in their chosen language, whether it be Welsh or English, in their dealings with the University, and to understand the distinctive nature of the bilingual society in which they reside. The principles and policies relating to the use of Welsh are embodied in the Welsh Language Standards, the University Charter and the Strategic Plan of the University.

Where can I see a copy of the Welsh Language Standards?

A copy of the Welsh Language Standards is available here Compliance Notice - Section 44 Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011. The document Aberystwyth University's Welsh Language Standards describes how the University will comply with each standard.

I don't speak Welsh so are the Welsh Language Standards relevant to me?

The Welsh Language Standards are applicable to all members of the University’s staff and to third parties contracted to provide services on behalf of the University.

The Centre for Welsh Language Services offers advice on all aspects of the Welsh Language Standards. Contact us at if you are not sure about any aspect of the standards.

Are the Welsh Language Standards applicable to all Aberystwyth University activities?

The standards are applicable to most services provided by the University – these are listed below.

  • the admission and selection of students
  • information provided to students and prospective students about the body
  • the welfare of students
  • complaints
  • disciplinary proceedings in respect of a student
  • careers services
  • student intranet, virtual learning and learning portal sites
  • graduation and award ceremonies
  • the assessment or examination of a student
  • the awarding of grants and the provision of financial assistance
  • public lectures
  • learning opportunities
  • allocation of a personal tutor
  • student accommodation, libraries and art centres
  • calls to a main telephone number (or numbers), helpline numbers, call centre numbers and automated telephone systems
  • signs on the body’s buildings

(The Welsh Language Standards (No.6) Regulations 2017 – Part 3 Interpreting the Standards, paragraph 31, p. 40-41).

The Welsh Language Standards are not usually applicable to the teaching content of academic schemes, to research work, nor to activities outside of Wales. Contact the Centre for Welsh Language Services at for further information.

Is there staff training available on the requirements of the Welsh Language Standards?

Yes – The Centre for Welsh Language Services provide 8 sessions (4 in Welsh, 4 in English) each academic year to staff on the requirements of the Welsh Language Standards. Training dates and registration available at

How can I complain about a failure to comply with the Welsh Language Standards?

If you believe that the University has failed to comply with the Standards you can complain by using this form - Complaint Form. You can see our complaints procedure here - Complaints Procedure

Do the Welsh Language Standards apply to third parties?

If a third party provides a service on behalf of the University then the Standards apply to them as well. See the guide on third parties - Contracts and Tenders.  There is a checklist available for third parties which gives examples of possible activities where the Standards would apply - Welsh Language Standards Checklist for Third Party Providers.  The Welsh Language Commissioner has also developed a guide - Bidding for Contracts and Grants: Welsh Language Considerations.

I’m responsible for awarding grants/financial assistance, do I need to complete a Welsh language impact assessment?

Yes – The University has adopted a new policy in accordance with Standard 100 to assess the effects of grants and financial assistance schemes on the Welsh language: Awarding Grants and Financial Assistance - Welsh Language Considerations, Policy and Procedure

These asessments will be completed for all grant schemes awarded by Aberystwyth University. For further Information please contact

Where can I find the Welsh Language Impact Assessment Tool?

You may download the form from here - Welsh Language Impact Assessment Tool. One of these should be filled in when making or revising a policy. The guide may also be of use.

How do I send work for translation?

Guidelines on sending work for translation may be found at Translation Requests.

How do I arrange simultaneous translation?

Guidance on how to do this is here.

How do I find out if someone wishes to receive correspondence from the University in Welsh or bilingually?


  • Correspondence to a group of students should be bilingual. Further information regarding communication with students and the public, in accordance with the requirements of the Welsh language standards, can be found in the 'correspondence' guide.
  • Correspondence from students should be responded to in the same language (e.g. in Welsh, English or bilingually)
  • In terms of corresponding with individual students, there is a record of each student's language choice on the AStRA database and on their student record under 'Personal Details’ ( Please note that correspondence relating to academic content, e.g. the content of a particular module, will only need to be bilingual/Welsh if the module is Welsh-medium or a bilingual module.
  • Where the recipient's language preference is unknown (e.g. prospective students in Wales / students in Wales / public) the initial correspondence should be sent bilingually.


  • Correspondence to a group of staff (e.g. an email from a Service to staff, emails to all staff, an email from a Head to their department) should be bilingual as per the requirements of Aberystwyth University's Policy on the Internal Use of Welsh.
  • In terms of corresponding with individual staff, staff should indicate their preferred language on Aber People – guidelines can be found here. Staff will then receive correspondence relating to their employment (e.g. from Human Resources) in that language. Where the choice of language of an individual recipient (a member of staff) is known it is good practice to send the correspondence in that language.

The Public

  • Correspondence to a group of people (the public) should be bilingual. Further information regarding communication with the public, in accordance with the requirements of the standards, can be found in the 'correspondence' guide .
  • Correspondence from the public should be responded to in the same language (e.g. in Welsh, English or bilingually)
  • Where the recipient's language preference is unknown the initial correspondence for recipients in Wales should be sent bilingually.
  • The requirements of the Welsh Language Standards (correspondence) do not apply to research (e.g. correspondence between academic staff at different institutions).

Should everything I write be available bilingually?

Documents which are distributed widely among the members of the department, University or the public in Wales must be bilingual. The Centre can advise and support if your are not sure what you should do.

I have an urgent message to send to a group of people on email, must I send the message bilingually?

All correspondence to a group of people should be sent bilingually every time, and Welsh placed first or to the left of the English. The Translation Unit prioritises the translations of correspondence but if you wish to send the message immediately contact the Centre to explain the situation and to arrange a translation.

Do email signatures and out of office messages need to be bilingual?

Yes – staff can create a bilingual corporate email signature here and bilingual out of office templates are available here.

Should I answer the telephone bilingually?

Every member of staff who is a first point of contact in a department or office should answer the telephone bilingually whether they are able to speak Welsh or not. The greeting and the name of the department should be said in Welsh first and then in English. The guide 'Answering the telephone' explains the procedure which should be followed if you are unable to respond further to a call in Welsh.

What is the procedure for advertising in the media?

All advertisements which are created by the University and which appear in the media in Wales should be bilingual with the Welsh appearing on the left to the English or above the English. The advertisement should appear in Welsh only in Welsh language publications.

Do social media posts need to be bilingual?

Posts on AU corporate, departmental or service accounts must be bilingual. There are specific standards that apply to social media. The guide Social Media explains when and how the Welsh language should be considered when tweeting or using any other social media.

Is there any general information about the Welsh Language available to new students?

What rights do students have regarding meetings?

The guide Meetings - students and public describes what Welsh language provision student can expect in meetings. This depends on the number of people who are attending the meeting, and on the subject of the meeting.

Where can I find information about Welsh classes?

Details regarding Welsh classes may be found here.

Is there support available to help me improve my Welsh language skills?

Details regarding learn Welsh courses can be found here.

I am a member of staff and wish to attend Welsh classes, do I need to pay?

The University supports staff to attend courses during the day or in the evening, through an online virtual class, an in-person class or a blended course.

The University will pay the fees of staff attending Welsh classes organised by the Learn Welsh team, and staff are supported to attend the courses.

Staff must complete a fees form and submit the form to the Centre for Welsh Language Services in order for the fees to be paid.

Details of the Learn Welsh program is available here.

Where can I get the Working Welsh lanyard/badge which shows that I am able to speak Welsh or am learning Welsh?

  • Working Welsh lanyards are available at the Hugh Owen Library Information Desk.
  • Working Welsh badges are available from the Centre for Welsh Language Services.
  • Remember to wear your lanyard/badge, especially during the University’s open and visiting days and if you work in a reception area.

Where can I get Cysgliad, the Welsh language spelling and grammar software?

Guidance on how to do this can be found here Information Services.

How do I place a Welsh interface on my PC?

Guidance on this can be found here Information Services.

Where can I find help with using my computer in Welsh?

Information Services FAQ page answers various questions about using your computer in Welsh.