Changes to term times at the University of Surrey have sparked protests from students. More than 1,000 undergraduates have signed up to a campaign group on social networking website Facebook to complain about plans to start the academic year five weeks later than usual. The new structure is due to start in October 2009, with exams taken after the Christmas and Easter breaks. Existing students claim that they were not told about the changes, although details were printed in the university's prospectus. Surrey says that the current start time - in early September - is before most universities, causes difficulties for overseas students seeking visas and is inappropriate as the sector moves towards post-qualification admissions.