Newman University, Birmingham


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The Independent Online


Overall ranking: A new entry, 120th out of 126 in the Complete University Guide for 2016.

History: Founded as a Catholic teacher training college in 1968 and named after the cardinal Blessed John Henry Newman, the poet, theologian and leader of the Oxford Movement. Awarded university title in February 2013.

Address: South-west edge of Birmingham, approximately 20 minutes from the city centre, overlooking the Bartley reservoir.

Ambience: A compact HE institution with a real community feel. Views of the big city one side and the Worcestershire countryside on the other. Buildings are modern and red-brick. The university bases itself on strong Catholic beliefs but welcomes students of all religions and backgrounds.

Who's the boss? Professor Peter Lutzeier, a linguistics expert and fellow of the Higher Education Academy, is vice-chancellor & principal.

Prospectus: 0121 476 1181 or request one here.

UCAS code: N36

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Normally candidates will need at least 280 UCAS entry points for bachelors' degrees including a B and C at A2 (or equivalent).

Vital statistics: Small and perfectly formed. Around 3,850 students, of whom almost all are from the UK or EU. Newman has roughly 350 staff, and around 30 per cent are mature students.

Added value: Historically they have a good graduate employment record, while work placements are a feature on all degrees. A £20m campus refurbishment has recently been completed, including the impressive new library shown in the picture above. The money also went towards building sports laboratories and refurbishment of other areas of the campus. Lots of part-time jobs available in Birmingham and on campus, with students working as ambassadors, in the library and in catering.

Teaching: 57th out of 126 for student satisfaction with teaching quality.

Graduate prospects: 104th out of 126 with 56.2 per cent finding graduate level employment after completing their degrees.

Any accommodation? Yes. A standard place in halls starts at £3,222 for a standard room through to £4,286 per year for one of the limited number of en-suite rooms. They have 200 rooms in halls.

Cheap to live there? About average. A room in a shared flat will set you back around £65 to £70 per week.

Transport links: Local buses run into the centre of Birmingham every 10 minutes. To go further afield, take the train, coach or taxis.

Fees: £8,700 per year for full-time home undergrads starting in 2014, £4,600 for part-time.

Bursaries: Academic achievement scholarships of up to £10,000 are available to students starting non-teacher training courses who achieve BBB or above at A-level. National Scholarship Programme awards worth £3,000 are available for undergraduate students with a household income below £25,000.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Students' Union organises talent shows, comedy clubs and theme nights. Regular performances take place in the student bar Senses.

Price of a pint: Just over £2.50 in Birmingham, so not too bad, but the Union offers a range of food and drink discounts.

Sporting reputation: Ranked 136th out of 145 in the BUCS league.

Notable societies: Not a huge range, but students are encouraged to create their own. Strong and inclusive dance and acting groups. 

Alternative prospectus: Head to The Student Room to chat with current and prospective students and learn more about what life as a Newman student is really like.