A-Z Of Universities: Nottingham Trent

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The Independent Online
Age: Five.

Incarnations: Who knows? But it goes back a long way through a technical college, college of technology and college of art and design. Became Trent Poly in 1970 and later Nottingham Poly. Joined university league in 1992.

Address: City campus in the throbbing heart of Nottingham; Clifton campus is four miles away on a hill overlooking the river Trent.

Ambience: City site is lively jumble of converted terraces, Victorian Gothic, tower blocks and concrete slabs. Not too much grass. University is really proud of its new pounds 13 million Boots library (good old Boots coughs up again) opened to students last month. It launched a brave new world of high-tech teaching and learning. Clifton campus small and friendly near where DH Lawrence set Sons and Lovers. Clifton Hall with its ornamental grounds is a Georgian manor housing trainee teachers.

Vital statistics: Big university with 17,300 full-time and 5,500 part- time students. Has grown dramatically since it became a university. Big mix of ages and backgrounds. As a former poly, has close links with practitioners in worlds of business, industry and the professions. New programmes this year - MA in investigative journalism, BA in fashion marketing and communication and BA in business management.

Added value: University says its graduates have good employment prospects. Around one-half of all courses offer up to a year's work experience. All students taught key skills in leadership, communication, IT, problem-solving and group work - the skills employers say they want.

Easy to get into? Harder than it used to be. Entry points have recently been raised to at least 12 - equal to two Cs. Most competition for business, law, art and design and broadcast journalism.

Glittering alumni: Reynold Pearce and Andrew Fionda of Pearce Fionda fashion house; singer Babybird; alternative comedian Paul Kaye (aka Denis Pennis); Alan Simpson, Labour MP.

Transport links: Good. Nottingham Station is one mile from the City site. M1 is five miles away. And then there's East Midlands International Airport for those in a tearing hurry.

Who's the boss? Professor Ray Cowell, literary expert who specialises in Irish writers and collects contemporary art.

Teaching rating: Rated 17 out of a maximum of 24 in Russian, Spanish, French and German; 19 in sociology; 20 for land and property management and civil engineering; 21 for communications and media; 22 for building.

Research: Came 62nd out of 101 in the research assessment or 3rd among the new universities. Improved its ratings in 21 out of 24 subjects entered - most improved university of any in the country.

Financial health: In the black.

Night life: Lots of bopping. Students' union operates hot programme of live bands. New campus night club called SUB. New city attraction is Le Metro, a continental style bar where you go to chill out.

Cheap to live in? University rooms cost pounds 53 a week, including food. Private landlords charge pounds 35-pounds 45 a week, without food.

Buzz-phrase: "...which was nice" (catch phrase from The Fast Show).

Next week: Open University.

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