Bedfordshire, University of

 

 

Overall ranking: 117th out of 123 in the Complete University Guide for 2015.

History: The University of Bedfordshire has its roots in Luton Modern School, which was established in 1904.  After several name changes, the University of Luton was founded in 1993.  In 2006 Luton merged with De Montfort University's Bedford campus – the former Bedford College of Higher Education – to become the University of Bedfordshire.

Address: Main campuses in Luton and Bedford, with a teaching facility and conference centre in Putteridge Bury, a country house just outside Luton.  Healthcare is taught at sites in Aylesbury and at Butterfield Park near Luton, and there is now a brand new campus in Milton Keynes – University Campus Milton Keynes (UCMK).

Ambience: Surprisingly upmarket. Luton campus is next to a listed church, where most graduation ceremonies are held, and the Mall Arndale shopping centre. The Bedford campus is a 20 minute walk to the town centre. Putteridge Bury campus is four miles from Luton in a neo-Elizabethan mansion set in grounds designed and planted by the architect Edwin Lutyens and classic horticulturist Gertrude Jekyll.

Who's the boss? Bill Rammell, a former Minister of State for Further and Higher Education, has been Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive since 2012.

Prospectus: 01234 400 400 or order one online here.

UCAS code: B22

What you need to know

Easy to get into? It depends on the course that you want to study. Many of the teaching courses, including the physical education courses, are very competitive and ask for 260 UCAS points. Other courses ask for a minimum of 200 UCAS points with 160 from A levels (or equivalent), but Bedfordshire welcomes students with a range of qualifications and past experience.

Vital statistics: Around 24,000 students from more than 100 countries, with 17 per cent of these being 25 and over.

Added value: Expanding. Major recent and ongoing investment in redevelopment and regeneration across the Luton and Bedford campuses. A campus centre opened in Luton in 2010, containing a 240-seat lecture theatre and exhibition space. The University has a state-of-the-art media arts centre, which boasts a broadcast television studio, an indoor performance studio, three digital radio studios, editing suites and much more.  A new postgraduate and continuing professional centre opened in 2013 and a state-of-the-art library is on track for completion in 2015.  The award-winning Butterfield site for healthcare students is home to simulation labs. At the Bedford campus, £8m has been invested in a new PE and Sport Science Centre, which was used to train 2012 Olympic and Paralympic athletes. The sophisticated sports science centre includes a cutting-edge laboratory, a new sports hall and a large sports therapy room for carrying out fitness and exercise experiments. In addition, Bedford has a new £6m Campus Centre, which includes a 280-seat theatre, dance studios, fair-trade cafe and a social space, while a new teaching and learning centre, part of a £25m Bedford campus redevelopment plan, is set to open in 2015. 

Teaching: 107th out of 123 for student satisfaction with teaching quality in the Complete University Guide .

Graduate prospects: 106th out of 123 with 53.1 per cent finding graduate level employment.

Any accommodation? Over £60m has been invested in developing state-of-the-art student accommodation in Luton and Bedford.  Now over 1,800 rooms in Luton and 700 in Bedford, many en-suite, are available with rents from £98 (standard) to £139 (deluxe) per week for 2014/15 in Luton, and from £96 to £113 per week in Bedford.  Studios are available at both Luton and Bedford for around £150 per week.

Cheap to live there? Above average. Private rents average £80 to £100 per week in both areas.

Transport links: Located near to the M1, junctions 10 and 11. London Luton International Airport is close by. Trains whisk you into central London every 15 minutes, taking only 30 minutes door-to-door. Bus station and a National Express coach service is five minutes walk from the Luton campus. The Bedford campus is 20 minutes by foot from Bedford town centre. The Milton Keynes campus is situated in the heart of town and is well-served by rail and coach services.

Fees: Maximum fee of £9,000 per year for full-time home and EU undergrads starting in September 2014.

Bursaries: Awarded over 2,000 scholarships and bursaries in 2013/14. Sets aside £5m annually to give financial help to students who need it most. Partakes in the National Scholarship Programme to assist students from households with incomes below £25,000. There are various other scholarships and bursaries available, based on a wide range of criteria including excellence in academia and sport. See here for more details.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: The main haunts in Luton are the students' union bar ‘The Lounge’ or ‘sub2’, a union owned nightclub, plus popular local clubs Bling, Edge and Liquid, along with bars Yates's and Brookes. In Bedford, students love Bar Soviet, Esquires, New York New York, Time Out and Oxygen, but also have the option to stay on campus with the ‘Pub in the Hub’. Milton Keynes bars and clubs include The Living Room, Groove and Cookies and Cream. Aylesbury boasts a few popular venues too.

Price of a pint: About £3 in both Luton and Bedford, with plenty of student drinks deals in the union and clubs in town.

Sporting reputation: Could be better at 74th in the BUCS league.

Notable societies: Large range of sports clubs. Cocktails and Spirits Society for the drinkers among you, plus the Corner Stone Society that aims to provide a network with professionals, a platform for healthy debate, and host guest lectures.

Glittering alumni: Becky Jago, Anglia News presenter; Sir David Plastow, formerly chairman of the Medical Research Council; Gemma Hunt, CBBC presenter; Maggie Alphonsi, England rugby player; Sue Campbell CBE, chair of UK sport; and Liz Yelling, long distance runner.

Alternative prospectus: Check out how current Bedfordshire students rate various aspects of their university experience on What Uni? here.

SPONSORED FEATURES

Day In a Page

Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

Turkey's conflict with Kurdish guerrillas in Iraq can benefit Isis in Syria

Turkish President Erdogan could benefit politically from the targeting of the PKK, says Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

Our choice is years of Tory rule under Corbyn or a return to a Labour government

Yvette Cooper urged Labour members to 'get serious' about the next general election rather than become 'a protest movement'
Singapore's domestic workers routinely exploited and often abused in the service of rich nationals

Singapore's hidden secret of domestic worker abuse

David Cameron was shown the country's shiniest veneer on his tour. What he didn't see was the army of foreign women who are routinely exploited and often abused in the service of rich nationals
Showdown by Shirley Jackson: A previously unpublished short story from the queen of American Gothic

Showdown, by Shirley Jackson

A previously unpublished short story from the queen of American Gothic
10 best DSLRs

Be sharp! 10 best DSLRs

Up your photography game with a versatile, powerful machine
Solved after 200 years: the mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army

Solved after 200 years

The mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army
Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise

Robert Fisk on the Turkey conflict

Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise
Investigation into wreck of unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden

Sunken sub

Investigation underway into wreck of an unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden
Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes

Age of the selfie

Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes
Not so square: How BBC's Bloomsbury saga is sexing up the period drama

Not so square

How Virginia Woolf saga is sexing up the BBC period drama
Rio Olympics 2016: The seven teenagers still carrying a torch for our Games hopes

Still carrying the torch

The seven teenagers given our Olympic hopes
The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis, but history suggests otherwise

The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis...

...but history suggests otherwise
The bald truth: How one author's thinning hair made him a Wayne Rooney sympathiser

The bald truth

How thinning hair made me a Wayne Rooney sympathiser
Froome wins second Tour de France after triumphant ride into Paris with Team Sky

Tour de France 2015

Froome rides into Paris to win historic second Tour
Fifteen years ago, Concorde crashed, and a dream died. Today, the desire to travel faster than the speed of sound is growing once again

A new beginning for supersonic flight?

Concorde's successors are in the works 15 years on from the Paris crash