- Fees & Finance
- Students' Union
- Student Support
The University of Keele
The University of Keele is the largest campus-based university in the UK. It is one of the so-called “plate-glass” universities, having been founded in 1949 and given its charter in 1962. From its origins, it was known to provide an alternative style of learning with a focus on inter-disciplinary study, something which is today evidenced by the fact that 90% of undergraduate students pursue dual-honours degree courses.
Keele is said to be one of the country’s most beautiful universities and is situated in 600 acres of park and woodland, on a hill, overlooking it closest town, Newcastle-under-Lyme.
By bus, the campus is fifteen minutes from Newcastle-under-Lyme and 45 minutes from Stoke-on-Trent, its next nearest town. Students are not hugely impacted by this, as the campus provides almost everything they need. 70% of students live on campus and the students' union has been voted one of the best in the country for nights out.
The university is in a good central location, being only just over an hour’s drive from Manchester and Birmingham and three and a half hours drive from London. Students can also get to London by train. The journey takes 90 minutes from Stoke-on-Trent.
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
The University of Keele is the largest campus-based university in the UK. All of its facilities are located on a self-contained campus between Manchester and Birmingham, except a small purpose built campus at the Royal Stoke University Hospital, which houses the faculty of health. The nearest town, Newcastle-under-Lyme is just a 15-minute bus ride away.
The campus is nestled among 600 acres of parkland and woods and Keele has been voted one of the country’s most beautiful universities. Around 70% of full-time students live on campus meaning there is a very close-knit community.
The campus has a huge range of on-site facilities including a supermarket, a bookshop, a bank, a newsagent, a health centre, a pharmacy, a number of café’s, restaurants and bars, extensive sports facilities, an art gallery and the University's arboretum, boasting one of the largest collections of flowering cherry trees in the country.
The University of Keele is situated on an estate with extensive woods, lakes and parkland, formerly owned by the Sneyd family. The Sneyds came into possession of the Keele estate in the mid-16th century. The Hall which currently stands in the ground was rebuilt in 1860 and is Grade II listed by English Heritage for its architectural importance.
The University itself was founded as the University College of North Staffordshire in 1949. The aim of the college was to provide an education to the working classes that was not under the jurisdiction of the University of London, unlike the many other university colleges of the day. It offered a revolutionary style of teaching that allowed a large amount of interdisciplinary study.
In fact, until the 1990’s, most students followed a unique four-year course, beginning their studies with a Foundation Year, covering the development of Western civilisation through the perspective of almost every academic subject. Keele claims to have re-invented the dual honours degree in its modern form. Even today, nearly 90% of undergraduate students still pursue a dual-honours degree course.
The University received its Charter as the University of Keele in 1962 it is said to be one of the “plate glass” generation of universities. The University has been continually expanding since its inception. Many of its buildings date from the following its royal charter. Another expansion of the site is planned to take place from this year, it will include a new science centre among other things.
Keele’s reputation as a research institution has been continually growing and in 2009, the university was awarded a Queen's Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education, for pioneering work with the NHS in early intervention and primary care in the treatment of chronic pain and arthritis.
Faculties & Schools
Faculty of Health
- School of Health and Rehabilitation
- School of Medicine
- School of Nursing and Midwifery
- School of Pharmacy
- Research Institute for Primary Care and Health Services
- Research Institute for Science and Technology in Medicine
Faculty of Natural Sciences
- School of Computing and Mathematics
- School of Life Sciences
- School of Psychology
- School of Physical and Geographical Sciences
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
- School of Humanities
- Keele Management School
- School of Law
- School of Social Science and Public Policy
- School of Politics, Philosophy, International Relations and Environment
In the 2014 research excellence framework, 21% of the University of Keele’s research was classified as 4* or “world leading”. This represented a major improvement in Keele's performance from the last research assessment exercise in 2008. Then, 11% of submitted research achieved the top grade. Furthermore, 71% was judged to be in the top 2 categories in 2014, this is compared to only 46% in 2008. The performance in some units of assessment, most notably Allied Health Professions, Primary Care, General Engineering and History was particularly outstanding.
International & Industrial Opportunities
Every year, Keele sends students to study at one of 70 partner institutions all over the world. Exchange opportunities are available for both single honours and dual honours students on most undergraduate programmes, and are based in universities where modules are taught in English. Some single honours programmes even allow students to study for a full year at specific partner universities. Others allow students to study abroad in second year for one semester. Partner universities are located in the USA, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Europe, Japan, Korea or Hong Kong. A student’s choice of country will depend on their degree subject.
Students who successfully complete one semester of language study will also have the opportunity to participate in a summer study programme at one of the University’s selected partner universities abroad. Language and culture courses are currently on offer in Japan, Spain, Russia, France and Germany. The courses are typically two to four weeks long and combine intensive language training with a wide range of culture and leisure activities.
Some courses at Keele require students to do a placement year between years two and three. Furthermore, even if their course does not require it, Keele University encourages all students to participate in placements as part of their degree, as far as possible. The University works with a number of national organisations linking students with work placements and can provide help and guidance to students going through this process.
UK/EU Students (2020/2021)
The University of Keele offers a number of cash prizes to exceptional students. The Keele Excellence Scholarship is a cash award of £2,000, £1,000 or £500 for each year of a student’s full-time undergraduate course at Keele, depending on the A-level grades (or equivalent) they achieve. Students who achieved at least AAA at A-Level (or equivalent) will receive £2,000 per year, students who achieved AAB (or equivalent) will receive £1,000 and students who achieved ABB will receive £500 per year.
The University also runs an Elite Athlete Programme for students competing at the highest level in their sport. The programme offers a number of benefits including access to training facilities, assistance from a qualified strength and conditioning coach and physiotherapy among other things.
The Keele University Bursary is a cash bursary of £1,000 paid each year to any student who receives the maximum maintenance grant or Special Support grant and is liable to pay the full £9,000 annual tuition fee.
The University also offers a Study Abroad Bursary worth £1,000 for the study abroad year only, to support students taking part in the programme.
Keele University has two libraries, one on the main campus and the other at the Royal Stoke University Hospital. Both have free Wi-Fi and offer a choice of silent or group study spaces and the campus library is open 24/7 during semesters. Although both libraries are available to all students, the Health library at the Royal Stoke University Hospital mainly supports Nursing, Midwifery and Medical students.
The University has excellent IT facilities. There is open access to PCs in the Library, where there are also Scanners and high-speed colour printers available 24/7. There is free WiFi in all university buildings and across campus and many schools also provide PCs for student use. There is also Wi-Fi internet access in every study bedroom. For anyone having IT troubles, IT Connect, the University’s IT helpdesk is available in the library seven days a week. Keele also runs a Laptop Clinic and a Laptop Loan scheme so students never have to worry about their technology letting them down.
The Keele Learning Environment (KLE), is an online portal where students can get enhanced course content for their studies, submit their work and use virtual group study facilities such as chat rooms and messaging.
Learning and academic support is provided by the Student Services Centre, who help and advise students in a number of areas. The centre runs specialist drop in sessions as well as offering one-to-one advice. Every student also has a personal tutor who can advise him or her on all academic issues.
There are also a number of more specialist facilities at Keele. These include a mock court room, several recording studios in the music department and state of the science laboratories among other things.
Keele has a number of sports facilities, all available on campus. These include the Alderton and Walshaw sports halls, both full size, multipurpose sports centres. There are a number of other indoor facilities as well, such as a dance studio, a gymnasium, 6 squash courts, a spinning room, a 50-station fitness centre, a bouldering wall and a strength and conditioning room.
The University’s outdoor facilities, also located on campus include a full sized Astroturf pitch, 9 football pitches, 2 rugby pitches, 2 cricket squares and a lacrosse pitch.
There are over 25 fitness classes run every week and the Keele SU Athletic Union runs 36 different sports clubs with 68 teams, which compete against other universities and local teams. Students wishing to splay sport in a friendly, non-competitive manner can also join the University’s Play4Fun programme, whatever their ability.
More elite athletes have the opportunity to join the Elite Athlete Programme, which offers access to training facilities, assistance from a qualified strength and conditioning coach, physiotherapy and more.
The Students' Union at Keele is governed by five full-time elected officers alongside permanent, professional members of staff. It is easy for students to get involved in the running of the Union through forums, the Union Committee, the Student Council and Union General Meetings. The latter, also called ‘Forum for Change’, allows all students to put forward ideas for change, and discuss them with their peers.
In 2012/13 Which University voted the Keele SU 4th best in the country for nightlife. It gained this accolade because of its commitment to providing excellent entertainment to students. Recently its on-site nightclub/ music venue has played host to no less than six Brit Award nominated artists. Every year the union puts on a number of big events including the Freshers’ Ball and Fair at the beginning of the year, the Halloween Ball, the “Winterfest” Christmas Party, the Christmas Market, the Refreshers’ event, and their annual summer party “Woodstoke”.
There are a number of different places to eat on campus, many of which are run by the Union. Within the Union building itself there is a café selling sandwiches and Panini’s, Munch restaurant, which sells hot food and the Union’s pub, the Scruffy Squirrel. There are also two nightclub/ music venues, the ballroom and k2, which also doubles up a space for societies. Finally, there is an on-site shop selling stationary and university merchandise.
Through the Students' Union, students can indulge their hobbies and interests or find new ones by joining one of the University’s 100+ clubs and societies. They can also get involved in volunteering, either alongside their degree, or as part of it, because at Keele University, there is a volunteering elective worth 15 credits towards. Students can even gain Volunteering Awards and have their hard work recorded on their Higher Education Achievement Reports (HEAR). The University of Keele also runs a raise and giving (RAG) week every year. Last year the university raise over £40,000.
Religion & Spirituality
There is a range of faith support available at Keele. The interdenominational University Chapel provides a focus for Christian worship in a variety of styles and traditions, right at the centre of the campus. It is open every day in term-term offering students free tea & coffee, a place to meet their friends and a space for quiet reflection. There is also an Islamic Centre with facilities for Muslim worship and Jewish kosher rooms.
The university chaplaincy offers 24/7 emotional, pastoral or spiritual support for students and staff of all faiths and none. University chaplains can also provide students with a list of "faith advisers" from the major religions in the locality. The chaplaincy has a Forum made up of representatives of student societies, SU officers, the Chaplains, and representatives of the University, who meet together to raise any concerns or issues.
Health & Wellbeing
The University of Keele runs its own health centre on campus.
Students at Keele can find wellbeing support from a number of areas. The Student Services Centre offers support ad guidance on all matters that relate to student and academic affairs.
Advice and Support at Keele (ASK) provides free, confidential, independent, impartial, non-judgemental advice, information and representation to students. ASK staff are qualified to advise on a number of issues including those relating to academic work, welfare benefits, employment, debt, fees/finance, immigration/visas, personal matters and much more.
The University’s Disability and Dyslexia Support team provide ongoing support to all students with disabilities or learning difficulties. Prior to application, they can arrange for students to visit to the University to assess any specific needs and to show them the accommodation available. Students with a physical and/or sensory disability, those with severe mental health issues and those on the autistic spectrum are guaranteed a room on campus for the entire period of their course.
The Disability and Dyslexia Support team can also arrange and advise on (DSA) assessments and applications, organise dyslexia screening, provide diagnostic assessment and tuition, supply specialised equipment and software, and help students organise examination arrangements and identification stickers for assessed work.
Keele’s Counselling and Mental Health Support team is made up of a group of professionally trained and experienced counsellors and mental health practitioners. They provide a listening ear as well as free, respectful, non-judgemental advice. Counsellors offer a safe space for students to talk about and express their emotions and can refer students on to other help if they feel it is necessary.
The University of Keele’s Careers and Employability team help students to explore their career options. They offer one-to-one guidance drop-in sessions, career-related events including workshops and employer visits, confidential careers interviews and a resource area where students can carry out careers research.
Careers advisers can also help students identify suitable work experience opportunities, which may include structured internship programmes, work shadowing and volunteer work. They also run a careers fair to introduce students to graduate employers.
The Students' Union runs a free Jobshop helping students find part-time work during both term time and vacations. Jobs on offer include those within the Students’ Union and the local area. There are also regular Jobs Fairs where students can meet local employers looking for student staff.
There are a multitude of employers based in Staffordshire and they look to Keele University for future members of staff. Keele helps its students and graduates to find internships, which could become permanent employment. The university works hard to ensure that opportunities on offer are with reputable businesses, where employees have the chance to make a real difference. The Careers and Employability team guide students through the internship process, offering workshops and presentations on CVs, covering letters, application forms, mock interviews and internship sessions.
Keele offers various opportunities for students to design their individual experience, in order to develop their knowledge, skills, attitudes and values and enhance their talents. The university is also very supportive of students who are interested in setting up their own business, see their website for more information.
Self-catered (per week) (2020/2021)
Roughly 70% of students at Keele University live on the campus; this is one of the highest percentages in the country and it means that there is a very close-knit community of students on campus. All halls are located within a 15-minute walk of the centre of the campus although there are a number of university accredited accommodation options in nearby towns such as Newcastle-under-Lyme.
All rooms are self-catered, fully furnished and include a telephone and access to Wi-Fi. The price of a room in university halls ranges between £80 for a normal study bedroom with a shared bathroom and £159 for en-suite study bedrooms, or rooms arranged in smaller flats.
Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities
English Language Requirements
The English language requirements for international students attending Keele vary between courses and degree programmes. For most normal degree programmes, students must have at least 6.0 IELTS or equivalent. The exceptions to this are law and medicine, pharmacy, physiotherapy and nursing, for which students require at least 6.5 and 7.0 respectively. See the University’s website for the requirements of other programmes such as foundation years.
The University of Keele’s international community is growing rapidly year on year. Keele has an International Student Support Service, which can advise and support international students with any pre-arrival issues, for example, questions about accommodation, immigration/ visas and how to prepare to come to the UK. To help students with their arrival and settling in, the International Student Support Service organises a meet and greet airport collection service as well as a number of international events during welcome week. Throughout the year, the service also organises trips to places around the UK and events both on and off campus.
The Keele Mentors scheme can also provide support to international students, while it is the University’s Peer Support scheme which links new students to current students.
Students whose first language is not English also have access to a range of English language classes and language support as part of their degree. The English Language Unit (ELU) provides classes, facilities and services and in addition to credit bearing modules on English for academic study, the ELU offers one to one tutorials year round for individual help and advice and has a wealth of resources for self-study and practice.