Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh


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The Independent Online


Overall ranking: Came 33rd out of 126 in the Complete University Guide for 2016.

History: Dates back to 1875, when the Edinburgh School of Cookery was founded to improve women's culinary skills and to promote better standards of health. After becoming Queen Margaret University College in the 1990s, it was awarded full university status in 2007 and changed its name to Queen Margaret University.

Address: The university moved to a new purpose-built campus on the east of Edinburgh in autumn 2007.

Ambience: The ultra-modern campus is the first of its kind in Scotland in 40 years. Billed as an 'academic village', it's set amongst attractive landscaped spaces and high-tech buildings. There is a learning resource centre, space for 800 student residences, a students' union, indoor and outdoor sports facilities and plenty of green spaces.

Who's the boss? Fluent in five languages, Professor Petra Wend took up the post as principal and vice-chancellor in September 2009.

Prospectus: 0131 474 0000 or view it online here.

UCAS code: Q25

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Courses ask for between 195 and 350 UCAS points on average. You can also gain entry via access courses at further education colleges.

Vital statistics: The modern university, which has 6,390 students, specialises in vocational subjects such as health sciences, social sciences, media and communication, business and enterprise, drama and creative industries and international health. Male to female ratio is around 1:3. Almost 50 per cent of students come from Scotland.

Added value: The campus offers a modern learning facility, designed in full consultation with students, meaning that learners' needs were fully taken into account. New courses are coming too, including BSc (Hons) in public sociology; physical activity, health and wellbeing; and nutrition and food science.

Teaching: 46th out of 126 for student satisfaction with teaching quality in the Complete University Guide.

Graduate prospects: 50st out of 126 with 69.4 per cent finding graduate level employment after completing their degrees.

Any accommodation? Yes. The university boasts 800 on-campus student residential places, made up of 501 standard rooms and 299 premier rooms– all en-suite. Rent for 2014/15 costs between £99 for a standard room and £114 per week for a premium room.

Transport links: Excellent. Edinburgh well served by road, rail and air. The new campus, based on the east of Edinburgh, is next to a train station - trains take six minutes to the city centre. The campus is also served by frequent bus services into Edinburgh and the Lothians.

Fees: Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland pay £6,750 per annum but a range of bursaries are available of up to £2,000. International students on full time undergraduate classroom based courses pay £10170, or £12,090 a year for full time laboratory/studio based courses.

Bursaries: Students can get their hands on a range of bursaries of up to £2,000. Click here to see if you're eligible.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Entertainment on campus includes student drama, Maggie's Bar with occasional club nights, weekly pub quizzes, and film screenings. Christmas and summer balls. With the Scottish capital on your doorstep, you won't get bored.

Price of a pint: £3.50 on average in Edinburgh, but head to the union for cheaper pints.

Sporting reputation: Not great- 131th out of 145 universities and colleges in the 2014/15 BUCS league.

Notable societies: Strong dance and drama groups, including the Cobweb Theatre Company.

Glittering alumni: Edith Bowman, TV presenter and Radio 1 DJ; Matt Baker, TV presenter on ‘Countryfile’ and ‘The One Show’ (also former Blue Peter presenter); Ashley Jensen, actress starring in the hit US series ‘Ugly Betty’; Kevin McKidd, star of ‘Rome’ and ‘Trainspotting’; Angel Coulby, actress best known for her portrayal  of Guinevere in the hit TV BBC fantasy series ‘Merlin’; Michael Matheson, public health minister in the Scottish Government; Jacqui Lundy, chief allied health professions officer, Scottish Government Health Directorate.

Alternative prospectus: Find out more and chat to former, current and prospective Queen Margaret students on The Student Room here.