Surrey, University of


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Overall ranking: Came 12th out of 123 in the Complete University Guide for 2015.

History: Three lives: first as a polytechnic, then became Battersea College of Technology in 1956. Officially became a university in 1966.

Address: On the North Downs, on the grassy Stag Hill site overlooking Guildford.

Ambience: Small green campus, with students and staff from more than 130 countries. Several swanky new buildings and a new second campus with accommodation and sporting facilities a short walk away.

Who's the boss? Professor Sir Christopher Snowden, president and vice-chancellor. He was knighted in the 2012 New Year's Honours for services to engineering and higher education. He is the author of eight books.

Prospectus: 0800 980 3200 or order one here.

UCAS code: S85

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Surrey raised entry standards to an average of AAB at A-level in 2006, but despite this, applications increased by 55% during the next two years. Entry requirements vary but to give you an idea- politics asks for AAB, psychology AAA, law AAB and computing AAB at A-level.

Vital statistics: Currently Surrey hosts nearly 10,000 undergraduate students and over 2,700 members of staff. Undergraduate students, who started their degrees in 2011, and undertook their Professional Training placement in 2013/14, totalled approximately 75 per cent of all students in that year registered to undertake a four year degree. Traditionally strong in the sciences and engineering, Surrey has recently expanded in medical and health-related disciplines, as well as the arts and social sciences. Rock fans take note- Led Zeppelin played their first ever gig here back in 1968.

Added value: Research has been boosted by extending the centre for space research. A Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd, a university-launched company, is Britain's only company launching micro-satellites and was recently acquired by EADS Astrium, Europe's leading space company in the largest cash sale ever of a university spin-out company.  Major investments since 2006 have included a £12m Ivy Arts Centre and Guildford School of Acting; a £36m Surrey Sports Park include a 50m swimming pool; a £47m School of Veterinary Science; a £70m Manor Park student village; and a £13m new Library and Learning Centre. Current projects include the £45m School of Veterinary Medicine, to be completed by summer 2015; and the £40m Support for 5G Innovation Centre, the world's first research centre dedicated to mobile technology.

Teaching: Not too shabby- ranked 10th out of 123 in the Complete University Guide.

Graduate prospects: Placed 26th with 74.9 per cent entering graduate level employment.

Any accommodation? Yes. Accommodation is purpose-built in self-catering blocks. Prices range from £67 for a budget room on campus in Stag Hill Court and Hazel Farm; and the most expensive is £155.50, for an 'enhanced' en-suite room on Stag Hill and Manor Park campuses.

Cheap to live there? Not really- Private sector houses and rooms are readily available in Guildford and range from £85 to £110 per week

Transport links: London is just 35 minutes away by train and there are good links to both Heathrow and Gatwick airports. The campus is on the edge of the town centre and close to Guildford's station.

Fees: Fixed at £9,000 per year for full-time home undergraduates, international students pay from £12,735 to £15,920.

Bursaries: Surrey supports the National Scholarship Programme, meaning that first year students with a household income of £25,000 or less will be eligible to get their hands on a £2,300 campus accommodation discount. To find out about the NSP and other bursaries, click here.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: The Students' Union runs the recently-refurbished Rubix nightclub with a capacity of 1,600. The Citrus, Flirt! and Rock and Roll Bingo nights are particularly popular with students. Guildford is an expensive town to go out in but there are a range of clubs from the cheesy Flares to the more conventional Harpers and Dusk.

Price of a pint: About £3.50 but prices vary between bars and pubs.

Sporting reputation: Could be worse- currently ranked 36th in the BUCS league.

Notable societies: Plenty of international societies, along with FAB (Fashion and Beauty) and BreakSoc for breakdancers of all levels. Plenty of scope to create your own here.

Glittering alumni: Alan Parker, chief executive of Whitbread; Robert Earl, restaurateur and founder of Planet Hollywood; Quentin Crisp, writer and actor; Sir Alec Issigonis, designer of the Mini.

Alternative prospectus: Check out The Green Room blog for an alternative insight into life at Surrey.