Royal Agricultural University

 

 

Overall ranking: 51st out of 124 in the Complete University Guide for 2014.

History: The first agricultural college in the English-speaking world. Gained the Royal Charter from Queen Victoria in 1845 and received state funding in 2001. Awarded full university status by the Privy Council in 2013 and formally changed its name to Royal Agricultural University.

Address: On the outskirts of Cirencester in the heart of the Cotswolds. The university farms are based in two locations close to the campus.

Ambience: Beautiful countryside with buildings that mirror the quadrangle and tower Oxford style. Often referred to as 'the Oxbridge of the Countryside'.

Who's the boss? Professor Chris Gaskell, a veterinary scientist and the former pro vice-chancellor of the University of Liverpool, became principal in 2007.

Prospectus: 01285 889 912 or request one here.

UCAS code: R54

What you need to know

Easy to get into? 120 UCAS entry points for foundation degrees. 240 - 300 UCAS entry points for honours degrees depending on the course. Relevant work experience or advanced GNVQ at merit level will also be considered. All applicants are interviewed and the most academically able are taken from a wide range of backgrounds.

Vital statistics: Takes 650 undergraduates and 250 postgraduates from 40 countries.

Added value: University farms provide a first-class field laboratory for students. There is the opportunity to take part in countryside sports, such as clay pigeon shooting.

Teaching: 86th out of 124 for student satisfaction with teaching.

Research: 114th out of 124 in the Research Assessment Exercise. Recognised as a top research establishment, particularly in soil chemistry, plant nutrition, and crop development and protection.

Graduate prospects: 54th out of 124 with 67.3 per cent finding graduate level employment.

Any accommodation? Yes but only at a price. Eight areas of residence for undergrads and three for postgrads. A single room in catered halls costs between £129 and £210 per week and there are a limited number of rooms in a self-catered hall for £125 per week. Utility bills are not included.

Cheap to live there? Not too bad, with local rents starting at around £75 per week.

Transport links: Cirencester is a mile and a half from campus and, during term-time, a free shuttle bus runs between the town and the University. Direct trains from London (90 minutes) and Bristol.

Fees: Set at £9,000 per year for all new home, EU and international undergrads starting in 2013.

Bursaries: A wide range of funding opportunities from scholarships to hardship awards are on offer. See the website for further details to check whether you are eligible for financial support.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Regular Students' Union nights throughout the week, many of which take place in the Tithe Barn. Wednesdays are the main nights out, along with the Friday 'Tithe Do' featuring a DJ or live band Rag Week activities and countryside pursuits also take place. It is in the depths of the Cotswolds however, so don't expect too many wild nights out clubbing. Four fabulous balls yearly, renowned as some of the best in the country.

Price of a pint: About £3 on average in Cirencester.

Sporting reputation: The RAU's students' hearts lie elsewhere- ranked 131st out of 135 in the current BUCS league.

Notable societies: There aren't many, but the Food and Wine Appreciation society is well worth a join, for visits to local producers, cookery demonstrations and talks from expert guest speakers.

Glittering alumni: Sir David Naish, recent president of the National Farmers Union; Jonathan Dimbleby, broadcaster; Simon Pott, once president of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors; Marcus Armitage, winner of the Grand National.

Alternative prospectus: Read all about how current students rate various aspects of their Royal Agricultural University experience on What Uni? here.

 

Sport
Thiago Silva pulls Arjen Robben back to concede a penalty
world cup 2014Brazil 0 Netherlands 3: More misery for hosts as Dutch take third place
Sport
Robin van Persie hands his third-place medal to a supporter
Van Persie gives bronze medal to eccentric fan moments after being handed it by Blatter
News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
scienceScientists have developed a material so dark you can't see it...
News
Monkey business: Serkis is the king of the non-human character performance
peopleFirst Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Arts and Entertainment
Blackman: Landscape of children’s literature does not reflect the cultural diversity of young people
booksMalorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Voices
Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
voicesWhen it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Life and Style
Once a month, waistline watcher Suran steps into a 3D body scanner that maps his body shape and records measurements with pinpoint accuracy
techFrom heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
News
Soft power: Matthew Barzun
peopleThe US Ambassador to London, Matthew Barzun, holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence. He says it's all part of the job
Sport
Joe Root and James Anderson celebrate their record-beaking partnership
cricketEngland's last-wicket stand against India rewrites the history books
News
Gavin Maxwell in Sandaig with one of his pet otters
peopleWas the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?
News
Rowsell says: 'Wearing wigs is a way of looking normal. I pick a style and colour and stick to it because I don't want to keep wearing different styles'
peopleThe World Champion cyclist Joanna Rowsell on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?