York, University of
Tuesday 04 June 2013
Overall ranking: Placed 12th out of 124 in the Complete University Guide for 2014.
History: A child of the sixties, like the universities of Warwick, Essex, East Anglia, Sussex, Kent and Lancaster. Opened in 1963 with just 230 students.
Address: Two sites: the main one is one mile from the centre of York in the village of Heslington and is undergoing a major £750m expansion; the other is a medieval manor in the city centre.
Ambience: The main campus is set in a rural landscape wrapped around two lakes. A collegiate university, it has eight colleges. Some departments are based in college, others have their own purpose-built premises.
Who's the boss? Professor Brian Cantor, a world authority on materials manufacturing, has been vice-chancellor since 2002.
Prospectus: 01904 433 527 or view the digital edition here.
UCAS code: Y50
What you need to know
Easy to get into? Competitive. Courses ask for grades rather than UCAS points. Typical offers range from AAA at A-level to BBC.
Vital statistics: Around 15,000 students, just over 10,000 of which are full-time undergrads. Highly rated for teaching and research, York is one of the most successful of the 1960s universities. Its policy of concentrating on a small number of large departments has paid off. York is one of 24 Russell Group universities, dedicated to the highest levels of academic excellence.
Added value: The Hull York Medical School welcomed its first students in September 2003 while the York Law School and the department of theatre, film and television admitted theirs in 2008. The university runs the York Award, where you study subjects such as IT, languages, financial management and active citizenship – with the emphasis on applying skills through voluntary work and work placements. It also runs the award-winning York Students in Schools scheme, where students volunteer in schools. Strong links with the business community across science, social science and humanities departments. The university hosts the National Centre for Science Learning and £750 million is being invested in the expansion of Heslington East, the first and second phase of which have been completed. A further £60 million has been invested to deliver a new sports village, a new Langwith College, library refurbishments and chemistry research facilities.
Teaching: Placed 15th out of 124 for student satisfaction in the Complete University Guide in 2014.
Research: Came 8th out of 124 in the Research Assessment Exercise.
Graduate prospects: Ranked 43rd with 69.6 per cent entering graduate level employment. Quite low considering its overall ranking.
Any accommodation? A room in college halls currently costs between £90 to £150 per week. About a third of undergraduates live in University-owned or managed accommodation. All first year undergraduates who apply by the deadline date are guaranteed a place.
Cheap to live there? Average- private rents are around £70 to £85 per week.
Transport links: Take the train or a coach (cheaper) for London, Glasgow or Birmingham. For local travel, use buses or bikes.
Fees: Home and EU students pay £9,000 per year, and international students £13,850 on average.
Bursaries: The university will award £4,500 to first years with a residual family income of up to £25,000 per year, and £1,000 to £3,000 for each subsequent year.
The fun stuff
Nightlife: Plenty of pubs, restaurants and wine bars in York, although music venues are a tad scarce. Each college has a bar and Students' Union music consists mostly of local bands and cover acts. Not a place for the serious clubber but try Fibbers and The Gallery.
Price of a pint: Around £2.50 on average.
Sporting reputation: Average- currently ranked 43rd in the BUCS league.
Calendar highlight: The biggest event of the year is the Summer Ball, held at the York Racecourse.
Notable societies: Harry Potter geeks will be delighted with the Muggle Society while Dougsoc is simply for having fun in whatever way possible, following the motto that 'the greatest danger in life is not taking the adventure'. For the more *ahem* experimental among you, there's also Fetish Society.
Glittering alumni: Former BBC director general Greg Dyke (now the university's chancellor); the late Labour MP Tony Banks; Harriet Harman MP; writer Helen Dunmore; comedian Harry Enfield; Victor Lewis-Smith, writer and radio presenter; editor of The Times, John Witherow.
Alternative prospectus: None as yet but check out the Students' Union website YUSU.
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