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Understanding Estrangement

What does estrangement mean for students?

A brief introduction to estrangement

A 2-page leaflet providing an introduction to students' experiences of estrangement.

(Source: StandAlone)

Family estrangement in students and sources of support

An infographic leaflet covering key causes of estrangement for students and sources of support.

(Source: StandAlone and the University of Cambridge's Centre for Family Research)

Exploring the role of family support networks for students in HE

A report exploring the impact of close and distant family relationships on students' experiences, including a look at when students most draw on family support.

(Source: Sheffield Hallam University and StandAlone)

Hear from estranged students in their own words

This is Us podcast

A podcast series in which care leavers and estranged students share their journey through university and beyond.

(Source: This is Us / The Unite Foundation)

BBC Stories: Estranged

A 4-minute video featuring Laura, an estranged student, talking about her university experience.

(Source: BBC Stories)

Our point of view

A collection of articles, stories, news and opinions by estranged students.

(Source: This is Us / The Unite Foundation)

What risks and challenges do estranged students face?

The challenges of HE without the support of a family network

This report builds a broad picture of estranged students' (and care leavers') experiences, and the associated challenges in HE without the support of a family network.

(Source: The Unite Foundation and StandAlone)

Risks for students who are estranged or disowned by their family

These research findings explore the risks for students who are estranged or disowned by their family, including homelessness, financial difficulties, mental health impacts, and suspension/withdrawal from study.

(Source: StandAlone)

End of course challenges

A report on the barriers and challenges for estranged students at graduation and transitioning into employment or further study.

(Source: StandAlone)

This 2022 Office for Students report details student outcomes in UK HE, including lower continuation, completion, attainment and progression rates for estranged students.

How can we support estranged students?

Top tips for staff as allies to estranged students

This tips sheet summarises key actions that can be taken by staff to improve estranged students' experiences in their institution.

(Source: StandAlone)

Top tips for students as allies to estranged students

This tips sheet offers simple things all students can do to improve the experience of estranged peers.

(Source: StandAlone)

Supporting estranged and care experienced students at Christmas

A practical guide aimed at all staff in HE that offers small changes that can support and include estranged and care experienced students during the winter period including Christmas break.

(Source: This is Us / The Unite Foundation)

Support for estranged students at Warwick

There is a comprehensive package of support available for estranged students at the University.

You can support estranged students by familiarising yourself with the support available, and proactively sharing it with students and staff.


The University's named contact for estranged students is Emily Cannon, who is Widening Participation Lifecycle Officer for the University.