Westminster, University of



Overall ranking: 96th out of 123 in the Complete University Guide for 2015.

History: The university is the former Polytechnic of Central London. Founded as Britain's first poly in 1838 to teach science and engineering, it was taken over in 1882 by philanthropist Quintin Hogg. Within a year his Polytechnic Young Men's Christian Institute had 5,000 students.

Address: Regent Street is the HQ. Three other central London sites- one on Marylebone Road opposite Madame Tussaud's, another in New Cavendish Street and one on Little Titchfield Street, as well as another campus at Harrow.

Ambience: Four central London campuses are close together but have little to do with one another. Regent Street has a listed marble foyer and boasts new study areas and computer labs, while Marylebone has had a £9.5m redevelopment of its teaching facilities and an £11m redevelopment of its student accommodation. Cavendish Street houses science and complementary therapies and has recently received a £35m redevelopment, and Harrow boasts high-tech facilities for students of communications, design and media, management and computer science. Other recent developments in Harrow include new project rooms and social learning ‘hubs’, an enclosed gallery, and space for fashion shows, live gigs, exhibitions and catwalks. The Little Titchfield Street Campus has a new, state-of-the-art lecture theatre, as well as improved social areas, a café and library.

Who's the boss? Environmental scientist Professor Geoffrey Petts, formerly of the University of Birmingham, where he led the Centre for Environmental Research and Training.

Prospectus: 020 7911 5000 or download a prospectus here.

UCAS code: W50

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Depends entirely on the course but anywhere between 160 and 340 UCAS entry points are required. To apply on one of the courses in the Faculty of Media, Arts and Design, you may have to submit a portfolio and attend an interview. These take place between December and April for full-time and March to early September for part-time students.

Vital statistics: One of the most diverse student bodies of any UK university, with more than 22,000 students from over 150 different countries worldwide. It’s a top-rated former poly with a decent reputation for research, it was the only new university to get a 5 (top rating) in the first research assessment exercise- for media and communications, the jewel in its crown. The Journalism and Mass Communication Department is rated top in the UK, and is the only British university media department in the world's top 20.

Added value: Westminster claims to teach the widest range of languages of any university in the UK. Investing heavily in its buildings and recreational facilities, with major refurbishment at Harrow recently completed. The project will create spaces for a gallery and catwalk, cafe, reception and new multimedia newsroom. The Regent Street Cinema, in the Regent Campus, is widely considered the birthplace of British cinema- a £6m refurbishment project is due to result in its re-opening this year.

Teaching: 117th out of 123 for student satisfaction with teaching quality in the Complete University Guide.

Graduate prospects: 108th out of 123 with 52.8 per cent finding graduate level employment.

Any accommodation? Yes but a place in halls will cost you anything from £85 to £265.02 per week for premium accommodation. Six halls of residence, four in central London and two in Harrow and Wembley.

Cheap to live there? No- expect to pay anything up from £125 per week for a room in a private shared flat or house. See here for more information.

Transport links: Central London- a true hub.

Fees: Westminster charges £9,000 per year for home and EU full-time undergraduates and £11,750 for international students.

Bursaries: See here for details on financial support to help with tuition fees and living costs, based on your household income. 

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Intermission is the swanky new bar at Marylebone, with the Undercroft bar and Area 51 club at Harrow. Otherwise, plenty of clubs close at hand in Soho and central London.

Price of a pint: Expensive in Westminster, but the Students' Union is on your wallet's side,so head there instead. Loads of discounts and deals online too- see here.

Sporting reputation: Not great- 92nd in the BUCS league table.

Notable societies: Ice-Skating Society is particularly fun around Christmas time, while Smoke Media comprises of a TV station, a radio station, a magazine and a newspaper. Tons of campaigning and human rights groups.

Glittering alumni: Chris Wilkinson, Stirling Prize for Architecture winner 2001; Michael Jackson, former chief executive of Channel 4; Julian Metcalfe and Sinclair Beecham, the founders of sandwich chain Pret a Manger; Vivienne Westwood, fashion designer; Christopher Bailey, head of design at Burberry and British Fashion Designer of the Year 2005.

Alternative prospectus: Join in the discussions with current, former and prospective Westminster students on The Student Room here.

John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'That was the lowest I’d ever felt'
Life and Style
healthIt isn’t greasy. It doesn’t smell. And moreover, it costs nothing

Other places that have held independence referendums
Jonas Gutierrez (r) competes with Yaya Toure (l)

Newcastle winger Jonas Gutierrez reveals he has testicular cancer - and is losing his trademark long hair as a result

Arts and Entertainment
Blossoming love: Colin Firth as Stanley and Emma Stone as Sophie, in 'Magic in the Moonlight'

Actors star in Woody Allen's 'Magic in the Moonlight'

peopleThe Times of India said actress should treat it as a 'compliment'

Watch this commuter wage a one-man war against the Circle Line
We are phenomenally good at recognising faces; the study showed that humans have been selected to be unique and easily recognisable

Human faces unique 'because we don't recognise each other by smell'

Home body: Badger stays safe indoors
lifeShould we feel guilty about keeping cats inside?
A male driver reverses his Vauxhall Astra from a tow truck

Man's attempt to avoid being impounded heavily criticised

Arts and Entertainment
US pop diva Jennifer Lopez sang “Happy Birthday” to Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, president of Turkmenistan
musicCorporate gigs become key source of musicians' income
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig believed to be donning skis as 007 for first time
The Guildhall School of Music and Drama is to offer a BA degree in Performance and Creative Enterprise

Arts and Entertainment
Pulp-fiction lover: Jarvis Cocker
booksJarvis Cocker on Richard Brautigan
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke and Pharell Williams in the video of the song, which has been accused of justifying rape
music...and he had 'almost no part' in writing it

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week