Welcome to Hyper Island 

We’re really excited to meet you in person soon. In the meantime, we have gathered some useful information to help you start your journey with us.

Your journey

Your Hyper Island journey starts here

So, welcome to Hyper Island… we may not have sandy shores and palm trees in Manchester, but we do have creative curiosity pumping through our veins, a growing tech tenacity fired in our bellies and a heart that beats louder than any major city. 

You are joining us on an incredible journey here at Hyper Island, where I expect you to carve a new narrative in Hyper history with your crew. The rest of your peers are joining us from all over the globe and as always we have an amazing mix of creativity, cultures and charisma in that group.

I’m Tash, the Director of Masters, born in Cornwall and bred in Manchester. I’m here to support you in engaging with industry, advancing aspirations, learning to love digital disruption and embrace change. 

We believe in “changing your tomorrow ” and I’m excited and ready to find out what your tomorrow will bring.

Tash Willcocks
Director of Masters Europe


To do list

To do list before the Programme begins

  • Read the Welcome Pack for information about accommodation, healthcare and monthly budgeting etc.
  • Pre-task: please fill out this survey by 15th November.
  • Join our private LinkedIn group where you can connect with your peers. You will receive an invite within the next few weeks.
  • Please ensure you complete your online registration with Teesside University before the programme starts. Link: here
  • Take a close look at the programme dates and add them to your calendar.
  • Review the Student Handbook. You will receive a link to access this document in November.
  • When you receive your Hyper Island email address in January, remember to create your Slack profile and say hi to your crew.



Manchester is a busy and vibrant city with so much happening, every week. Hyper Island is based in the Northern Quarter, known as the creative centre of the city, with numerous studios, designers and digital agencies. The school is located just 5 minutes walk from the main train station at Piccadilly which connects us directly to London.

Manchester’s industry and social calendars are always packed with regular creative networking events, talks and collaborative hack fests, at locations such as Madlab, Hackspace, Federation & 2022NQ as well as internationally known festivals such as Future Everything, Digital City Festival, Design Manchester and the Manchester International Festival.

Housing in Manchester ranges from around £350-600 a month for a room in a shared house in areas such as Chorlton, Didsbury and Fallowfield, and between £450- 650 for a room in a shared flat in the city centre/Ancoats. A 1 bed studio apartment will cost between £600 – 1000+ a month.

In general, the majority of Hyper Island students choose to live in the city centre in areas such as the Northern Quarter, Deansgate and Ancoats. Accommodation costs are slightly higher in these areas than further out of the city, but you will save on transport costs.

Student Accommodation

There are also a number of serviced private student halls in the city. Previous students have found accommodation in a number of ways; some met up through their  and rented a house to share, others went to private halls and some found vacant rooms with people through sites like Spareroom and Gumtree (the UK’s version of Craigslist). Manchester is the largest student city in Europe, and has plenty of housing available all year round. 

Local Areas

Fallowfield is a large undergraduate student area, about 2 miles from the city centre, and is easily accessible by bus. Chorlton has a mix of young professionals, families and postgraduate students. It’s 3 miles from the city centre and has frequent bus and tram services. Didsbury is further out than both of these areas but is the most upmarket.

In general, the majority of Hyper Island students choose to live in the city centre in areas such as the Northern Quarter, Deansgate and Ancoats. Accommodation costs are slightly higher in these areas than further out of the city, but you will save on transport costs.

As a full-time student you will be exempt from Council Tax. Hyper Island will provide you with a letter to give to the city council once you have fully registered as a student and arrived in Manchester.

Deposit and your Contract

It’s normal practice that a landlord or letting agent will require the same amount as a month’s rent as a deposit, plus your first month’s rent in advance before you move in.

Make sure you’ve seen the property and are happy with it before signing any contracts or handing over any money. We would also recommend making sure the landlord or letting agency take an inventory of the condition of the property before you move in to stop you being charged for existing damage and that your deposit is placed in a registered tenancy deposit scheme.

For information on your rights and regulations over private renting more information can be found here gov.uk/private-renting


Getting around Manchester is easy, particularly when compared to a larger UK city such as London. The Metrolink network runs through the city and out to Greater Manchester’s suburbs and there’s also an extensive bus route. Manchester is also well served by the National Rail network via Piccadilly station.


Also known as ‘The Tram’ or ‘The Met’. Similar to London’s tube network, the tram line runs through most of Manchester and out to key suburban neighbourhoods like Chorlton and Didsbury. Trams run regularly (every 2-5 minutes) and the nearest tram station to Hyper Island is Piccadilly Gardens. With fares starting at £1.20, it’s an easy and economical way to travel. Learn more at metrolink.co.uk.


The National Rail network feeds into Manchester through main stations; Piccadilly and Victoria. A privatised system, the rail network is services by a few different operators depending on your destination. You can reach London in 2 hours with an express train run by Virgin Trains and as a full time student you are eligible for a Young Persons Rail Card for discount rail fares. For more information and to book tickets, visit the thetrainline.com.


Manchester’s buses are a great way to explore the local area and to reach places not easily reached by tram or train. With a multitude of routes, it’s easy to reach anywhere within Greater Manchester. To plan your route and find bus stops, visit the Route Explorer.

For more detailed information on travel in Manchester, visit Transport for Greater Manchester.

Living costs in Manchester are comparable to other major UK cities but are much lower than in London.

Living expenses can vary greatly from student to student. Here’s a breakdown of living costs for an average Manchester student, for a month.


Arriving in a new country can be a hectic time and there are many new things to adjust to. With a busy schedule, a new social scene and immersive studies, it’s important to look after your health while away from home.

National Health Service

The NHS (National Health Service) is the UK’s state health service that provides treatment for UK residents through a wide range of health care services. Some services are free and some have to be paid for.

The following NHS treatment is free for everyone:

  • Some emergency treatment (but not follow-up treatment)
  • Family planning services
  • Diagnosis and treatment of certain communicable diseases
  • Compulsory psychiatric treatment

As you are studying for six months you will qualify for NHS treatment from the beginning of your stay. However if you currently pay for private health care in your own country, you should look at extending it to cover living in the UK, as waiting times on the NHS can be long.

The following services are currently free of charge:

  • Consulting a General Practitioner (GP) and most other GP services (e.g. visiting a clinic)
  • Treatment in a hospital (both emergency and non-emergency treatment)

You may need to pay for:

  • Medicines prescribed by your GP.
  • Some GP services (for example; vaccinations for travel, getting a sickness certificate)
  • Dental treatment
  • Optical treatment

For details of NHS charges, visit nhs.uk

Register with a GP

We strongly recommend that you register with a GP within the first couple of weeks of arriving in the UK, even if you do not feel ill. This is to make it easier to see the Doctor when you need to, as GPs are often unable to give appointments to people not registered at their Surgery.

To register at the Doctor’s Surgery or Health Centre, you will need:

  • Your passport;
  • Evidence that you are a student (for example, your enrolment letter); 
  • Proof of your UK address (for example, your accommodation contract)

Meet the Team

Learning Designer and Facilitator of the Full-Time Manchester MA Programmes. Co-designer of content with industry leaders, speakers and clients.

ROB POTTS – Programme Leader
Learning Designer and Facilitator of the Full-Time Manchester MA Programmes.
Guides and facilitates learning, coordinating research across industry and academic contexts.

KATHRYN PERCIVALAdministrative Coordinator
Students and programme admin support including the maintenance and recording of participation, grades and timetables.

Your first week

Programme Schedule

Your first week at Hyper Island is an intense week where you learn the tools and processes that will support you throughout the programme. You will work on building the class culture, setting goals, and forming a team.


Monday 13 January 2020

9.00AM: Welcome breakfast 

9.30 AM: Prompt start

6:00 PM: Finish

For the whole of the first week, you will be required to attend from 9.00am to 6pm and on Wednesday 15th January you will finish around 9pm. 

Your time based in the school will end on Friday 26th June 2020. Please note, attendance is required up to and including that day.

After this time, you will leave the school to undertake your Industry Research Project.

Term time:

School Start: 13 January 2020 

School End : 26 June 2020

Industry Research Project : 13 July 2020

Industry Research Project End : 15 November 2020

Graduation: approx. Summer 2021

Programme Overview

Digital Management Programme Overview


Hyper Island Communication Channels 


Student email account
You will be issued with a Hyper Island email account. This email account will be in your name as requested in your student agreement. Instructions on how to complete email setup will be shared with you during the Foundation Days. Your email account will be for formal communication and extension requests. 

Join the student Slack group
You will receive an invite to join the Slack group for your crew when you receive your Hyper Island email. You’ll be able to use this channel to collaborate, ask and answer questions from each other, and us. Slack will be the main communication channel between your programme leader and crew for announcements, link sharing, discussions and Q&A. 

Google Drive
A student Google Drive will be set up prior to the programme start date. This will include private individual student folders where you will submit work. It will also include all course information, photo storage and a shared drive which can be used to collaborate with peers on projects. You will be invited to join the drive during the Foundation Days. 



You will receive an invitation to join a LinkedIn group for the full-time MA programmes in Manchester within the next few weeks. By becoming a member of this group, you will be able to connect with your fellow students ahead of the programme starting in January. If you’re hoping to link up with others to find accommodation in Manchester, this will your opportunity to reach out to potential future flatmates. You will also be able to network with the programmes team, as well as industry leaders and guest speakers.  


Registration & Enrolment

Teesside Registration & Enrolment 

Teesside Registration
All students must register online with Teesside University using this link (also in your admissions letter). Once this has been completed you will receive an official letter of acceptance from Teesside University. This letter can be used for funding applications (if applicable).

Prior to the start of the programme you will be enrolled with Teesside University. This is separate to your enrolment with Hyper Island and will be completed by a Teesside representative before you start the programme. 

You will also be formally enrolled onto the programme on your first foundation day in Manchester by a Hyper Island representative. All students are required to bring a valid passport/EU ID card and their original degree certificate or official translation (if applicable) on their first foundation day. We have to check these documents against those submitted during your application process in order for Teesside to be able to complete your enrollment.



And finally...

A warm welcome to Hyper Island! We look forward to meeting you in January.