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University of Plymouth
With a mission to advance knowledge and transform lives through education and research, the University of Plymouth is among the emerging global elite of modern higher education institutions.
The Times Higher Education 2017 '200 Young Universities' ranking, the University of Plymouth is ranked as one of the top three UK modern universities. Plymouth is distinguished by its approach to combining world-class research and teaching with a commitment to widening participation and social inclusion.
The University campus is located at the centre of a thriving, ocean front city in one of the UK’s most beautiful regions.
Plymouth has everything you would expect from the largest city in the South West – major high street stores, theatres, multiplex cinema, art cinemas, and a wealth of small clubs and venues. From Plymouth you have easy access to the finest beaches and beautiful countryside of the South West.
QS World Ranking (2021)
Times Higher Education (2020)
Shanghai Ranking (2020)
Complete University Guide (2021)
Guardian League Table (2021)
Teaching Excellence Framework
Green Credentials (2019)
Young vs Mature
Male vs Female
In 1862 Plymouth School of Navigation was first established under the science and art regime, renamed Plymouth's College of Technology in 1962, and was granted polytechnic status in 1970. 1988 saw the amalgamation of Rolle College of Education (Exmouth) and Exeter college of Art and Design with Plymouth Polytechnic. One year later the Seale-Hayne Agricultural College also merged to create the Polytechnic South West. Plymouth's Polytechnic was awarded university status in 1992, prompting a name change to The University of Plymouth. In 2000 the Peninsula Medical School, managed jointly with the University of Exeter, was designated to the University of Plymouth, which was a major boost to its status. 2011 saw the University of Plymouth undergo a rebranding change, launching itself as Plymouth University. In 2018 saw the University re-introduced itself as the 'University of Plymouth'.
Plymouth's main campus, nestled right in the heart of the city, is home to the Faculties of Arts and Humanities, Health and Human Sciences, Plymouth Business School, Science and Environment, and the Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry, as well as the University of Plymouth Students’ Union. It also contains the University accommodation halls on campus – with further halls within walking distance.
The North Plymouth campus is four miles north of the main campus close to Derriford Hospital, where you'll find the purpose-built, multi-million pound Peninsula Allied Health Centre. It's used by the Faculty of Health and Human Sciences and is where you'll study if you're on the Dietetic, Occupational Therapy, Operating Department Practice, Physiotherapy or Podiatry courses. Facilities for the University of Plymouth's Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry are adjacent to Derriford Hospital at the Plymouth Science Park.
Faculties & Schools
Faculty of Arts and Humanities
- Plymouth Business School
- Plymouth Institute of Education
- School of Arts, Design and Architecture
- School of Humanities and Performing Arts
- School of Law, Criminology and Government
Faculty of Health and Human Sciences
- School of Health Professions
- School of Nursing and Midwifery
- School of Psychology
Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry
- Peninsula Dental School
- Peninsula Medical School
- School of Biomedical and Health Sciences
Faculty of Sciences and Engineering
- School of Biological and Marine Sciences
- School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics
- School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Plymouth has world-leading reputations in the research areas of marine and coastal, technology, computer science, environmental, economic and social sustainability, creative and cultural economies, health, nursing and biomedicine, and pedagogic research/innovation.
In the 2014 REF more than 63% of the University's research was graded as either world-leading or internationally excellent - nearly double its score from the 2008 RAE.
International & Industrial Opportunities
The University of Plymouth offers student opportunities with partner universities in Europe and North America through Erasmus+ and the International Student Exchange Programme (ISEP) respectively. The University sends and receives students on exchange with North American universities through direct/bilateral exchanges and exchange ISEP. Choosing to take part in an exchange abroad will be recognized as an integral part of your Plymouth degree. Furthermore, most students studying within the Faculty of Sciences and Engineering have the opportunity to spend part of their degree abroad in individual institutions in the USA, Canada, Australia and Europe.
Many courses at the University of Plymouth provide the option of a placement or work-based learning. Before looking for opportunities, check your programme specification or speak to your personal tutor to find out whether a placement year or work-based learning option is available to you as part of your study. A placement year is a great opportunity to gain real-world experience in your chosen area. And while you’re putting your learning into practice, you’ll also pick up a whole range of employability skills to kick-start your career. This involves a year spent working after you’ve finished your second year of study. Once completed, you’ll return for the final year of your course.
UK/EU Students (2020/2021)
Scholarships & Bursaries
There a number of scholarships and bursaries available depending on your course, year of study and circumstances. For more information, please see the University's website.
The Charles Seale-Hayne Library is at the heart of the Plymouth campus and is open all day, every day, including Christmas. The Library gives you access to single and group study spaces, extensive resources, including half a million books; space for preparing presentations; facilities such as open access computing, edit suites and printers; a free scan-to-USB facility; a cafe and vending facilities for food and drink; and Wi-Fi access for your own laptop. Help is always on hand in the Library with the Library Information Desk, Roving Assistants who provide point of need library, and IT support within the building and the Ask Live Chat enquiry service. The Library resources can be accessed from wherever you are and online reading lists are available for many programmes.
You can also borrow multimedia equipment free of charge and an edit suite for creating professional projects. There is also an in-house multimedia services that provides a range of video and multimedia support.
As a student with Plymouth, you have access to computers in open access areas across the University with facilities including further provision based on the needs of the course. The University gives students access to a range of online tools and services, to support your studies and your future employability. These include module sites, providing not just learning materials, but also access to collaborative tools such as blogs and wikis, online coursework submission and access to your own e-portfolio (PebblePad).
There is a Learning Development team who offers tutorials, a Drop in Zone and online support for students who need help with writing, developing an academic voice, using and referencing literature, reading strategies and making useful notes, preparing for exams and presentations, and coping with study stress.
The Nancy Astor Sports Centre is the University of Plymouth main sports facility on campus. Basketball, squash, volleyball, badminton, table tennis, netball and five a-side-football are all on offer at the Centre. There is also a fitness suite with the latest cardiovascular and weight resistance equipment, and a dance studio hosting a wide range of instructor-led fitness classes including yoga, Pilates, body conditioning, dance classes and circuit training.
The University is a partner of the Plymouth Life Centre giving students exclusive use of some of the top class facilities within the Life Centre as well as membership discounts to all University of Plymouth students. The Life Centre also offers students free swims at certain times during the week.
There are also a vast range of sports clubs and societies run by the Students’ Union allowing students to get involved in sport at either a serious or a recreational level. There are a number of Intramural Sport leagues designed to promote "participation through sport" and help develop friendships. Students of all sporting abilities are encouraged to participate in Intramural Sport giving those who miss out on University team selection the chance to play semi-competitive sport.
The University of Plymouth, in partnership with the Mountbatten Watersports and Activities Centre can offer you a full range of water-based activities, such as kayaking and canoeing, windsurfing and more.
As a student of the University of Plymouth you are automatically a member of the University of Plymouth Students’ Union (UPSU). UPSU makes sure you have a successful, fulfilling and rewarding time both at university and in the future. Through UPSU you can get involved in one of the 150 clubs and societies that offer everything from sports to media or academics, as well as the opportunity to start up your own society if none of them suit.
The UPSU has its own Volunteer Department to develop and promote student volunteering in the local and student community. Furthermore, it also has an advice team to help with any issues you may have whilst studying at Plymouth. This may be concerning housing, debt, welfare benefit, student funding or anything that prevents you from making the most out of your time at Plymouth.
UPSU organises many events throughout the year from the Freshers' week to the Sports and Societies Fair and the Freshers Ball at the start of the year, and the grand finale that is the Summer Ball at the end of the year, as well as many events in between.
The Union runs the city’s largest Open Mic night and the second-largest nightclub with hundreds of live gigs and club nights throughout the year; vibrant bars; a shop and restaurants that provide a wide range of food and drink options.
Religion & Spirituality
There is a Multi-Faith Chaplaincy on campus for all staff and students, whether you have a faith, are searching for faith, or just want to meet people. There is a quiet room for prayer, reflection and meditation. Services offered by the Chaplaincy include a team of chaplains and faith advisors who can give help and advice on all faith related and many other matters, support for anyone going through bereavement or other tragedy, and lectures and conferences considering ethical and academic issues. Throughout the year the Chaplaincy puts on a variety of events from social evenings to lectures on faith issues, and courses introducing Christianity. They also have a list of ‘Where to Worship’ in Plymouth with all the places closest to the city centre and the student communities.
Health & Wellbeing
Students living at or near the University campus can register with a GP either at the University Medical Centre or the Peverell Park Surgery.
Student Wellbeing Services, part of the Student Services, offer one-to-one appointments and a whole range of personal development programmes to help you get the most from your studies and personal life. The programmes include workshops and information or taster sessions – you only need to book where it says so, while others are groups which run over a period of weeks. Mental Health Advisors from the Student Wellbeing Services, are available to help students who have a previous or recent mental health diagnosis or have started to experience symptoms that are affecting their ability to engage in university life. There is a Counselling Service offering group work and workshops, counselling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), as well as self-help resources.
Disability Services, part of the Student Services offers advice and guidance on disability to current and prospective University Of Plymouth students. This includes arranging appropriate provision for disabled students, running dyslexia-friendly study skills sessions, ADHD support group, and more.
TThe Career & Employability Service at Plymouth supports you with all aspects of your career journey, from the moment you start university until three years after you graduate. There is a wide range of opportunities for you to enhance and record your employability skills, both within and outside of your course, and this is supported by impartial careers advice and guidance to help you make informed choices about your future.
The Service allows you to drop in to see a member of staff, book an appointment or if you can’t make a face-to-face meeting, then you can get e-guidance by e-mailing a Careers Advisor. You can access a range of resources and activities including the Employer Mentoring Programme; a range of Careers Fairs throughout the year; information and support for business start-up; and the Placement & Internship programmes, giving a range of work-related opportunities. There is extensive information and support on job searching, CV and application writing, interviews and a range of career planning tools. There is also the option to take part in the Plymouth Award, which is designed to recognise and celebrate student achievements outside the curriculum, thus enhancing their employability prospects.
Self-catered (per week) (2020/2021)
The University of Plymouth guarantees university-managed accommodation to all first-year applicants. All halls are self-catered, of mixed gender (with some single gender flats if that is your preference), and are situated are located on campus, or within the nearby student village, which is a couple of minutes’ walk from the University’s facilities and nearby city-centre amenities.
The Residence Life team provides support and advice to help you to settle in and integrate into your first year at university in your new home. Hall Officers are responsible for supervising the Hall Volunteers in each residence, leading development activities and building a sense of community within the halls of residence. Hall Volunteers live in halls alongside students and have been trained to assist residents, support hall operations, build a community, host events and uphold university policy. Hall Volunteers also serve as information resources, peer advisors and student leaders and are there to help their residential students make the most of their community experience.
There are nine halls of residence in total, each unique with different kitchen and bathroom facilities. All contract lengths are 41 weeks, excluding medical, dentistry and full year international students where the contract length is 42 weeks.
Second Year students have the choice to extend their stay in University accommodation, but there is also university-approved accommodation, allowing you to have the independence to rent your own place but still be confident about its quality. Whatever your needs there is a Student Accommodation Office to offer advice and guidance to students throughout their time at Plymouth.
English Language Requirements
For international students to be accepted onto a degree course with Plymouth, you must have a suitable English language qualification. The table below shows some of the minimum English language requirements for the undergraduate course. Please check the University website for the full list of qualifications.
|IELTS||6.0 with no less than 5.5 for each component|
76 with no less than 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 21 in writing
50 with 42 in all four components (listening, reading, speaking and writing)
C with no less than "weak" in all 4 components
To reward outstanding achievement the University of Plymouth offers a number of international scholarships to help towards funding your studies. The Undergraduate International Student Scholarship is offered automatically to students who meet the eligibility criteria; application is not required. The scholarship consists of £2000 off your tuition fees in year one and 10% or 20% of your tuition fees in the successive year depending on your overall grade.
The International Academic Excellence Scholarship is offered to students with outstanding academic record. The scholarship consists of 50% off your tuition fees in year one and 50% of your tuition fees in the successive year if an overall grade of 70% or above is maintained.
The International Student Advisory Service (ISAS) provides specialist support and guidance for University of Plymouth international students, enabling you to fulfil your academic potential and get the most out of your time in the UK. The Service can offer advice on visas, culture shock, money, health, living in the UK and much more. On arrival there is an International Student Orientation Programme, including a London Heathrow Meet and Greet Coach Service, and a week programme of student led, social and practical activities, making sure international students quickly feel at home and make new friends in Plymouth.