Sussex, University of


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Overall ranking: Came 31st out of 124 in the Complete University Guide for 2014.

History: The first of the universities created in the 60s and celebrated its 50th anniversary last year.

Address: Set on the edge of the South Downs National Park in the rolling countryside of Sussex. Four miles from the vibrant centre of Brighton & Hove.

Ambience: Laid-back, modern; 200 acres of rolling green land. Campus a little isolated but self-sufficient. Sublime countryside nearby for ramblers or Brighton clubs for socialising. Once famous for student protest, students still maintain more of a reputation for radicalism than many.

Who's the boss? Professor Michael Farthing is vice-chancellor. He is a medic and an enthusiastic photographer who is also president of the British Society of Gastroenterology.

Prospectus: 01273 876 787 or order one here.

UCAS code: S90

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Competitive. Offers are made in A-level grades instead of UCAS points with most courses asking for between AAA and BBB depending on the programme of study. Flexible when extending offers to mature students, whom it welcomes.

Added value: Now has a medical school as part of a joint venture with Brighton University. Lots of opportunities to study abroad. The £30m Jubilee building opened in 2012 with a 500+ seat lecture theatre while developments on the flagship housing complex Northfield have recently been completed. The major new Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts is named after their former chancellor and expected to open within the next year. Sporting facilities in clude a therapy room with a sports-injury clinic, reflexology and hot stone massage treatments. The newly refurbished library is 24-hour and contains original manuscripts by Virginia Woolf and Rudyard Kipling.

Vital statistics: Over 13,000 students of which more than a third are postgraduates. Grouped into twelve schools of study including one of the largest psychology departments in the country. Formidable research reputation having numbered three Nobel Prize winners, 13 Fellows of the Royal Society, 6 Fellows of the British Academy and a winner of the renowned Crafoord Prize among their staff.

Teaching: Came 39th out of 124 for student satisfaction in the Complete University Guide.

Research: Placed 28th out of 124 in the Research Assessment Exercise.

Graduate prospects: Ranked 69th with 61.5 per cent finding graduate level employment.

Any accommodation? Over 4,500 students can be housed, with accommodation guaranteed to all undergrads who make Sussex their firm choice and apply for housing by the deadline. For 2013 entry, rents range between £60 and £137.40  per week. Many of the residential areas have undergone or are in the process of undergoing refurbishment.

Cheap to live there? Not too bad- you'll pay around £90 per week for a rented room in the private sector.

Transport links: Local trains and buses to Brighton are frequent and take minutes. Trains to London take 50 minutes while Gatwick and Heathrow are both in easy reach.

Fees: Full time home and EU undergraduates pay £9,000 per year with overseas applicants charged more.

Bursaries: Financial support is offered to students from households with an annual income below £42,611. Non-financial support is available to students whose parents did not attend university and/or have a low household income in the form of a work-study programme to help them earn money while studying.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Bopping in the Students' Union building, Falmer House. Or visit Brighton, a colourful city of numerous bars, clubs and entertainment venues less than ten minutes away. Brighton Dome and Komedia host great music, comedy and cabaret shows.

Price of a pint: About £3.40 in Brighton but with so many nightclubs and bars drinks can be found for a variety of prices.

Sporting reputation: Could be worse- ranked 47th in the current BUCS league.

Notable societies: Give the Ace of Clubs Magic Circle a whirl, join the All Things Televised group if you're a telly addict, watch cat videos on YouTube with others in CatSoc, or take a gamble with Poker Society. Still not satisfied? Join PunSoc for a group of fun-lovers who combine pubs with puns, or the Sherlock Holmes Society for a touch of mystery.

Glittering alumni: A long list including acclaimed novelist Ian McEwan; former president of South Africa Thabo Mbeki; Turner Prize winner and Tate Trustee Jeremy Deller; Helen Boaden, director of BBC radio; Alexandra Shulman OBE, editor of UK Vogue; and 80s pop heart-throb Billy Idol.

Alternative prospectus: Read student reviews of Sussex and check out how they rate certain aspects of university life on What Uni? here.