Chichester, University of


Thursday 06 August 2015 16:03

Overall ranking: Came 77th out of 126 in the Complete University Guide for 2016.

History: Origins can be traced back to 1839, when Bishop Otter College was established as a training school for schoolmasters in Chichester. Bishop Otter College merged with Bognor Regis College in 1977, to form West Sussex Institute and later Chichester Institute. It became University College Chichester with degree-awarding status in 1999 and gained full university status in 2005.

Address: Two campuses. Sports studies, sports therapy, sport and exercise science, adventure education, fine art, dance, music, media studies, theology, social studies and humanities are at Chichester; applied language studies, teacher education, the school of enterprise, management and leadership, and international courses are based at the Bognor Regis campus.

Ambience: Coastal setting close to the South Downs and lovely countryside, with a holiday atmosphere in summer. Heaven for water sports fanatics; Bognor campus has three renovated, Georgian mansion houses. Roman-settled Chichester has an Oxford college-style campus, with a close-knit, community feel.

Who's the boss? Professor Clive Behagg is vice-chancellor, an author of various political works.

Prospectus: 01243 816 002 or order one here.

UCAS code: C58

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Quite- they ask for a minimum of two A level passes (one of which should usually be in a subject relevant to proposed study) and at least 3 passes in additional subjects other than A level e.g. GCSE level. AS level passes are also accepted. The UCAS points system has been adopted but some subjects may specify grades at GCSE level as well. Advanced GNVQ and BTEC national diplomas are accepted. Mature students often come via access courses from local further education colleges.

Vital statistics: A small university with 4,660 full time undergrads and 775 postgraduate students. Nearly two thirds of students are female.

Added value: Proud of its supportive environment. Hot on teacher education, sport, dance and performing arts. Sports dome recently constructed to offer an all-weather sports facility, plus a running track. New £4m accommodation at Bishop Otter Campus. Newly-refurbished students' union on the Bognor Regis campus, including a new gym and restaurant. Hosted training and holding camps for international athletes in the build-up to the 2012 Olympics in London.

This year Chichester were awarded £8m from the government, which they will match to build a new Engineering and Digital Technology Park; specialising in STEM subjects. Construction for the park is already underway, and wil allow the university to accept an additional 500 students each year, starting in September 2016.

Teaching: 19th out of 126 for student satisfaction with teaching in the Complete University Guide.

Graduate prospects: 100th out of 126 with 56.8 per cent finding graduate level employment after completing their degrees.

Any accommodation? Yes at both campuses. Shared rooms and single en-suites are available starting from £93.13 a week. Catered halls (all on campus) range from £121.94 per week with shared facilities to £160.79 per week with en-suite facilities. See here for a list of options and prices.

Cheap to live there? Not really-average private sector rent costs around £90 - £100 per week.

Transport links: It's easy enough to get from Chichester to Bognor on the university's free bus, but anything further afield is slow. Direct trains from London Victoria to Chichester and Bognor take an hour and a half and there are various road links, notably towards Brighton, Portsmouth, Southampton and north to Surrey. Both campuses are five to ten minutes walk from their respective town centres. There is also now a dedicated late-night university bus service, which picks students up in the wee hours of the morning for just £1, and drops them outside their homes/halls.

Fees: £9,000 for 2015/16. International fees vary but are more costly.

Bursaries: The university offers a bursary of up to £3,500 per year for students with a household income of less than £25,000. There is also a scholarship available to gifted athletes. For more information, visit the university's funding page.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: There are student bars on each campus- Zee Bar and The Mack- which host some discos and band nights. Ravers tend to head for London, Brighton and Portsmouth at weekends.

Price of a pint: Fairly steep in Chichester at around £3.40 a pint but the union bars offer more tempting deals.

Sporting reputation: Not bad- 56th out of 145 in the current BUCS league, so above average.

Notable societies: Not a huge range at present but students are encouraged to set up their own. Beatfiend is an entertainment-based society that hosts open-mic nights and coach trips to clubbing destinations.

Glittering alumni: Jason Merrills, actor (Casualty and Cutting It).

Alternative prospectus: Head to The Student Room to put questions to current students and find out more about life at Chichester.

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