University of South Wales, Students' Union Building, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons.
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The University of South Wales
The University of South Wales (USW) offer a comprehensive range of opportunities and prospects. Students enjoy all the benefits of distinctive and innovative courses, facilities and support, as well as a growing reputation as a leading university for excellent employability. A broad range of courses and levels of study are brought together in a rich learning environment giving you a rounded university education and broadening your outlook from within your chosen academic discipline. Students are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attributes that maximise their intellectual and personal fulfilment, and enable them to succeed in today's challenging economic environment we now face.
The University is a major policy think tank, offering independent advice to government and employers across the world. This research and influence ensures that USW's courses reflect the latest thinking and advances, giving your university education an added distinction.
University of South Wales students benefit hugely from the University’s location, surrounded by breathtaking scenery and impressive historical landscapes, boasting excellent transport links and the buzz of two dynamic Welsh cities: Cardiff and Newport. There are many travel opportunities open to USW students. London is only two hours away from the Newport City Campus and 2.5 hours from the Pontypridd and Cardiff campuses. Railway stations at Treforest, Newport and Cardiff provide linksto international airports and easy, cheap exploration of the UK and mainland Europe.
Times Higher Education (2021)
Complete University Guide (2022)
Guardian League Table (2021)
Green Credentials (2019)
Young vs Mature
Male vs Female
The University has 30,000 students, with campuses in Cardiff, Newport and Pontypridd. Treforest and Glyntaff make up the Pontypridd Campus, the largest campus, ten miles from Cardiff. The majority of the University’s creative courses are located in Cardiff, with Newport City Campus hosting the brand new National Cyber Security Academy as well as many other courses.
The Cardiff Campus is located right in the heart of the city and is the home to many creative disciplines offered by USW. The ATRiuM Building, the hub of Cardiff Campus’s activities and home to many of the University’s creative courses, was opened by the University of Glamorgan in 2007 and is currently being expanded and is due to open in September 2016. Opposite is Atlantic House, which provides facilities for some finance and professional courses.
The University are currently investing £14.7m, to extend the Cardiff Campus and provide even more specialist facilities. This includes extensive studio facilities for design and fashion courses, as well as new dance studios, drama rehearsal spaces and photographic studios and labs. This is in addition to new fabrication workshops for media, performance and design courses, and model making facilities for animation. Open study and practice areas will offer spaces for students from all of our creative courses to work independently or in groups.
Newport City Campus
The University’s newest campus, opened in 2011 is home to a £35 million modern, open-plan building, full of teaching rooms and student facilities. Teaching, business, social work and youth work are taught here. Newport’s City Campus sits on the banks of the River Usk, conveniently just minutes away from Newport city centre. The campus is a vibrant, creative space where students on different courses collaborate on ideas as part of their studies.
Pontypridd is the University’s largest campus and is made up of two sites just a short 15-minute walk from each other: Reforest and Glyntaff. The Campus is away from the hustle and bustle of the city, and surrounded by green, open spaces. Here all learning, living and leisure facilities are within easy reach, as well as being close to shops, bars and restaurants. Pontypridd is only 20 minutes from Cardiff. Treforest hosts a variety of courses while Glyntaff is where nursing, science and sport courses are based.
In recent years, the campus has been refurbished, with the new Library and Student Centre at Treforest home for Student Services, providing a one-stop shop for all your support needs. The largest lecture theatre has also been redesigned, so it can now seat up to 300 students and is fitted with the latest technology. There's also a new training facility for aerospace students, complete with a flight simulator and full-size commercial aircraft, and an extension to the Aircraft Maintenance Centre with additional workshops, offices and stores. The new sport science facilities have new laboratories and high-tech teaching facilities, making them among the best in the UK. A new training space for lighting, sound and staged events students, means they can get practical experience on campus too. The £6.5m investment in the modern Centre for Automotive and Power System Engineering (CAPSE) facility provides state-of-the-art laboratories and facilities for engineering students.
The University of South Wales was formed in 2013 by the merger of the University of Glamorgan and the University of Wales, Newport.
The University of Wales, Newport, traces its roots from the Newport Mechanics’ Institute which was founded in 1841 while the University of Glamorgan traces its roots from the South Wales and Monmouthshire School of Mines which was founded in 1913.
Faculties & Schools
Faculty of Business & Society
- School of Business
- School of Law, Accounting & Finance
- School of Humanities & Social Sciences
Faculty of Computing, Engineering & Science
- School of Computing & Mathematics
- School of Engineering
- School of Applied Science
Faculty of Creative Industries
- School of Drama & Music
- School of Media
- School of Art & Design
Faculty of Life Sciences & Education
- School of Psychology & Therapeutic Studies
- School of Health, Sport & Professional Practice
- School of Care Sciences
- School of Education, Early Years & Social Work
In the latest REF, half of the University of South Wales's research was rated as either world-leading or internationally excellent - an increase of 50% on 2008 and the previous REF. The University is among the leaders in the fields of social policy, sport and exercise science, and the creative industries.
International & Industrial Opportunities
There are opportunities to study in Europe via the Erasmus scheme, and outside Europe in countries such as the US, Canada and Hong Kong, as part of an exchange programme. Another possibility is to take a year out in Mexico with The Anglo Mexican Foundation (). You will be involved in working on a range of cultural activities with , from arranging and participating in cultural events to working with students on their English language skills.
Exchange placements can last anywhere from three to twelve months. As an undergraduate, the most common placement opportunity is for a full academic year (10 months), however sometimes partner universities only have spaces for one semester.
UK Students (2021/2022)
Scholarships & Bursaries
The Excellence Scholarship forms part of the University’s Unconditional Offer Scheme for High Achievers and is worth £2,000 during your first year of study. To be eligible for this scholarship, you need to be made an unconditional offer and firmly accept this offer. You also need to go on to achieve ABB or equivalent at A Level.
If you are a University of South Wales student studying at one of their strategic alliance partner colleges, a Progression Bursary is offered to college students who choose to top-up their University of South Wales accredited HND or foundation degree to a full honours degree through a top up course at one of the USW campuses. Worth £500, this bursary could provide financial support towards your travel, living and study costs while studying at a University of South Wales campus. This bursary is not means tested.
There are also Welsh-medium scholarships available, and scholarships for specific courses. Please see the university website for more information.
USW Sports Scholarships are designed to help you realise your potential, whatever your sport and your academic subject, by offering a cash award each year of up to £1,000; and Support Services – including membership, use of facilities, physiotherapy and sports massage clinic and lifestyle seminars.
There are thousands of journals and books in USW’s library, available in print and electronically, as well as a range of study spaces
There are over 2,500 computers in open access and bookable teaching labs, as well as a dedicated IT Support Service to assist you five days a week (term-time) either face-to-face, on the phone, or online
The UniLife website has all the information you will ever need for student life at the University of South Wales. It keeps students up-to-date with the latest events, news, teaching resources, support and developments.
The University of South Wales has a strong sporting background, whether you wish to study a sports course, play as part of a team or just want to keep fit!
Based in South Wales, the University is in an ideal location for Sport with the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff alongside the now premiership Cardiff Blues, as well as the Wales National Velodrome and the Celtic Manor world-renowned Golf Course in Newport.
There is a thriving competitive culture with a number of teams competing within the University BUCS leagues, while there are also plenty of options and activities to help you stay healthy and active including cycling, rugby, badminton, golf, athletics.
There is a Sports Centre on the Treforest Campus open throughout the year and offering classes each week ranging from hot Yoga to kettlebells. The Gym has over 50 cardio-vascular machines and weight training equipment, as well as the latest Integra machines that can be used by wheelchair and able-bodied users.
Caerleon Sports Centre offers facilities and activities open to all students and staff at the University of South Wales, as well as the local community.
USW Sport Park is a £3.7m state-of-the-art coaching and performance development Centre just minutes from the University’s Treforest Campus and just 20 minutes from Cardiff. The Sport Park is regularly used for training by public and professional sport teams including the British Lions and international rugby teams as well as Cardiff City FC. USW Sport Park is the first sports facility in Wales to be rated as BREEAM-Excellent. USW Sport Park is the home of students’ outdoor sports at the University.
The University of South Wales SU's on-campus shops are your one-stop-shop for day-to-day essentials such as stationery, refreshments, computer supplies and more. They have shops on campus in Treforest, ATRiuM, Glyntaff and Caerleon.
The Randy Dragon is located within the heart of the Students' Union on the Treforest campus, serving good home-cooked pub grub and both alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks. This is your place to relax between lectures, grab a bite to eat, have a game of pool or just enjoy a pint with friends in a great pub environment. They also show major sports games, graduation ceremonies and have acoustic bands and singers too.
The Zen Bar is a Cardiff live music bar and restaurant serving a selection of gourmet burgers and wraps, and again is a place to relax between lectures, grab a bite to eat, have a game of pool or just catch up with your friends.
Eclipse Nightclub is Treforest's major venue. Eclipse comes equipped with a state-of-the-art sound, lighting and effects system that will enhance every night out. Eclipse plays host to in-brand clubnights such as Audio and Score, and bring you the very best in live music, alternative nights, house nights, drum’n’bass, international parties, plus all the cheese you can handle. In addition to these great nights out, there are comedy nights, the occasional cabaret evening, quizzes, all the major sporting events throughout the year, plus special events such as St. David's Day, St Patrick's, Chinese New Year and more.
Cable's Bar, named after the late Stuart Cable of the Sterophonics, is the Union's custom sports bar. This is the place to watch all the weekly sport fixtures, on widescreen TVs while enjoying a drink with your friends. It has state-of-the-art lighting and sound and is perfect for smaller parties and events.This is also a great place to start your evenings before venturing into Eclipse. Cables has been host to casino nights, award ceremonies, poker night, birthday parties, magazine launches and club & society events.
Religion & Spirituality
The Chaplaincy is available to you as an open and affirming service, and is there to enable people to meet one another and creating community. The Chaplaincy offers: a friendly welcome; a listening ear; information about faith groups; the Meeting House, the Chaplaincy’s home on the Treforest campus is a place to relax, to sit quietly or to arrange parties, events and meetings with friends; opportunities for worship; the Chaplaincy Room at Glyntaff is a place for prayer or quiet reflection, an oasis in the middle of a busy campus; seminars and discussion groups; social activities; and volunteering opportunities.
Health & Wellbeing
The Disability & Dyslexia Service provides a confidential and professional service where you can discuss individual requirements on your terms.
The University’s nurse-led University Health Service offers a wide range of services to all members of the University community including students, staff and visitors. Nurse appointment service for advice on all types of ailments and problems. They act as a supplement to the service provided by your GP.
The Wellbeing Service consists of The Mental Wellbeing Service and the Counselling Service. During term-time The Wellbeing Service offers Drop-Ins to provide information and support and help you develop a self-help programme.
Their Counselling Service offer non-judgmental, confidential, and professional support to explore your situation and make appropriate choices, as well as promoting an understanding of psychological and emotional well-being throughout the university. You can book an appointment to see a free, impartial counsellor.
The University's Careers and Employability Service provides professional and practical advice on a range of opportunities.They provide impartial advice and guidance, and can help you: consider your career options and make appropriate decisions; think about your skills, interests and abilities, and how these could relate to your career; learn the practicalities of job hunting, write an effective CV, make good-quality job applications and prepare for interviews.
The Bright Ideas scheme allows students and graduates to pitch business ideas to a group of experts to win funding that will help them start their business. As well as business advice and events, there are regular visits from industry experts and employers who give advice on how to succeed.
The University runs an initiative to maximise your potential during your time here known as Grad Edge. Grad Edge helps you gain specific skills for your workplace development, enabling you to aim higher and take the next step in your career. Alongside the specific knowledge and skills you will gain through your higher-level studies, the Careers Service can support you to create networks, gain relevant additional skills, and present yourself as a desirable candidate to potential employers.
The Student Development and Study Skills Service offers advice, information and resources to help USW students raise their aspirations, improve their academic performance and develop transferrable skills for employment. They offer advice on study skills on maths, Welsh and IT skills.
Self-catered (per week) (2021/2022)
There are a number of halls at each campus, which offer different amenities depending on your needs. All rooms are en-suite.
For those studying at Treforest and Glyntaff campuses, students in halls have access to The Hub, a social facility offering TVs, pool tables, board games and WiFi. The Hub also organises events throughout the year such as the Bonfire Night BBQ.
At the Cardiff campus, halls have a common room with TV, table tennis and pool tables.
All rooms have access to a shared kitchen and dining space, equipped with a cooker, fridge, freezer, microwave, toaster, kettle and iron. All bills such as heating and electricity is included as well as contents insurance. There is also access to laundry rooms, and 24-hour staffing.
English Language Requirements
Students whose first language is not English are required to have an IELTS 6.0 overall (with at least 5.5 in each component) or equivalent.
The Immigration and International Student Advice (IISA) team make sure you have the help and support you need before you arrive and during your studies. IISA staff can help you with any non-academic, welfare-related issues such as visa extensions, employment regulations, orientation and adapting to a new culture. They organise social activities throughout the year, promote volunteering opportunities, and recruit Global Assistants to help with the social and pastoral care of the University’s international and EU students. The IISA team work closely with the Students’Union and international student societies to support and promote activities for international students.
To make your travel arrangements to the University as easy as possible, the University organises arrival services for when you first arrive in the UK. These services are available throughout the year from Cardiff International Airport (CWL) and Heathrow Airport (LHR), London. On request, USW can arrange a free taxi service from the airport to your accommodation.
The International Welcome Programme (IWP) is a special orientation programme that has been running just for international and EU students each September and February for over 10 years. IWP is primarily a social programme that allows students to settle in, make friends and get used to being in the UK before their compulsory academic faculty induction and enrolment, which happens the following week. There are a wide range of trips and activities on offer and each student can ‘build’ their own personalised programme based on their needs and preferences. All students attend a compulsory welcome session and can then choose optional information sessions, including: living and learning in the UK; keeping safe under Tier 4; and driving in the UK. Activities vary from treasure hunts to cooking demonstrations, picnics to quizzes, city walks to guest lectures from local historians. There are also opportunities to learn new skills such as world dance, Zumba or drumming.
There are partial tuition scholarships of up to £1,500 per year are available on selected courses. Students may also be entitled to apply for an Undergraduate International Development Scholarships of £2,500 depending on your country of origin. If you are successful will be automatically considered for a scholarship when you make your application, and there is no separate scholarship application. You will receive confirmation of a scholarship with your offer letter.