- Academic Information
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The University of York
Since its beginnings in 1963, research-intensive York has consistently achieved outstanding academic credentials, being one of just six post-war universities to have appeared in the world’s top 100. It offers a wide range of subjects, with more than 30 academic departments and research centres, and has been voted 12th overall and 3rd in the UK in the Times Higher Education Golden Age Ranking (2019) for universities established for more than 50 years, but less than 80.
The city of York has a rich heritage, and is vibrant, colourful and cultured. Its highlights include the famous soaring Gothic Minster, the winding mediaeval streets and the specialist boutiques, while it hosts a multitude of festivals throughout the year, including the Festival of Ideas, the Viking Festival, the Festival of Angels, and the Food and Drink Festival. The city is big enough to feel cosmopolitan, but small enough to feel friendly, and has plenty of pubs, bars and restaurants to choose from, as well as a thriving cafe culture.
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
Founded on principles of excellence, equality and opportunity for all, the University of York opened in 1963 with just 230 students. However, there had been plans for a University in York long before this, with a petition drawn up for a university in York as early as 1641. When, in April 1960, the Government finally approved the establishment of the University, it was less than three years later that the first students walked through the gates of Heslington Hall. Since this time the University has grown steadily and now has 18,000 students from 140+ countries.
Life for all students is centred at Heslington (Campus West) on the edge of the historic city of York, where the colleges and most of the departments are set in an attractive landscaped campus. It is compact, easy to get around, and has a safe, friendly atmosphere. Central Hall is a tiered auditorium located at the heart of Heslington campus overlooking the lake. It has a capacity of 1190 and is used for concerts, conferences, competitions, fashion shows, graduations and other events.
Campus East is the newer part of campus. It's home to Computer Science, Law, Management and Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media, as well as Goodricke, Langwith and Constantine colleges, the York Sport Village and Piazza building which contains flexible learning spaces.
If you need to travel between Campus East and West you can hop on the free shuttle bus, travel 20 minutes walking or 10 minutes by bike.
Several departments are located in the city centre in the historic King's Manor, a group of Grade I listed buildings which was originally a residence for the abbots of nearby St. Mary's Abbey.
All York students become members of the college system, which encourages inclusivity and a valuable sense of community. The college system offers extra-curricular activities and leadership and team-work development through clubs, sports teams and volunteering, as well as a space to make friends.
The University is in the middle of an unprecedented period of expansion and renewal, and is continually developing the campus to give their staff, students and visitors the best experience during their time at York.
Departments & Schools
- Department of Archaeology
- Department of Biology
- Department of Chemistry
- Department of Computer Science
- Department of Economics & Related Studies
- Department of Education
- Department of Electronics Engineering
- Department of English & Related Literature
- Department of Environment & Geography
- Department of Health Sciences
- Department of History
- Department of History of Art
- Hull York Medical School
- Department of Language & Linguistic Science
- York Law School
- The York Management School
- Department of Mathematics
- Department of Music
- Department of Philosophy
- Department of Physics
- Department of Politics
- Department of Psychology
- Department of Social Policy & Social Work
- Department of Sociology
- Department of Theatre, Film, Television & Interactive Media
The success of York’s research is unquestionable. The University was ranked joint 14th overall in the Times Higher Education's ranking of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014. The proportion of the University’s research of world-leading 4* status was among the highest of any UK university and includes: Social Policy and Social Work, Sociology, Psychology, Language and Linguistics, Law, History of Art, History, Health Sciences, English, Education, Computer Sciences, Biology and Archaeology.
International & Industrial Opportunities
Through York’s structured worldwide exchange programme, you can study for up to one year at a partner university overseas, with full academic recognition, meaning that you don’t need to extend the length of your degree. The University has links with top-class institutions in North & South America, Asia, Australia and Africa. Through the ERASMUS programme, students can apply for study placements at York’s partner universities in Europe, or apply to work at an organisation whose industry is linked to their York degree programme.
The Languages for All programme (LFA) offers a wide variety of courses for all levels of ability so if you are considering a period abroad in a non-English-speaking country, LFA can help you boost your skills before you go.
If you do not want to dedicate a whole year of your degree to work abroad you can still make the most of your vacation through the Global Programmes Office, which, together with Careers, can help you to explore a wide range of potentially life-changing experiences though volunteering programmes, language and cultural immersion courses, and career-related summer schools.
At York, some courses, especially science and engineering, offer a year in industry where you can work with a wide range of employers. An academic co-ordinator will help you find a placement and students continue to receive support from their department during their year away.
UK/EU Students (2021/2022)
Scholarships & Bursaries
There are currently a number of support schemes to help you with the cost of attending university. These include the York Bursary of between £1,000 - £2,000 depending on your household income, the HYMS Bursary of £2,400 in all years to students with a household income of £25,000 or less, and Care Leavers Bursary of between £3000 to £2500 for students under 25 years old and in Local Authority Care before starting a course.
There are also awards available depending on the course you are studying and additional bursaries and scholarships administered by the University available for students once they have started their studies at York. Please check the University and Department websites for more information.
There is a flexible approach to teaching methods, which are tailored to the particular demands of individual subjects. Teaching for many of York’s degree programmes is done through small group tutorials. Students may also be taught in seminars and in lectures, and work on projects either on their own or in a small group.
Many courses feature online resources, supported by the 'Yorkshare', the University’s Virtual Learning Environment. Through Yorkshare you can engage in discussion, collaboration and self-directed study, alongside regular class contact time with staff and students. Yorkshare has resources to help develop your study skills and produce original work, such as the Academic Integrity tutorial, and gives you access to the libraries’ electronic holdings and search engines.
The University Library comprises: JB Morrell Library, Harry Fairhurst Building, Raymond Burton, King’s Manor, York Minster, Borthwick Institute for Archives and Piazza Library.
The Library’s collections support learning and teaching and include over 1.2 million items, access to over 60,000 print and electronic journals, thousands of e-books, audio-visual material, images, music scores, statistics, datasets and other electronic resources. The Borthwick Institute for Archives houses one of the most varied archive collections in any university in the UK. The Library staff are always happy to help with finding books or more detailed subject enquiries.
The library have Wi-Fi throughout and there are over 1250 study spaces across the Library buildings, which include areas for single and group study, dedicated accessible study rooms (for Library users who have a disability) and dedicated postgraduate study spaces.
York Sport Union has one of the highest number of sports clubs per student in the country with one quarter of all York students actively engaged in sport. There are over 60 active sports clubs, from traditional to more specialist sports such as skydiving, triathlon, sailing, American football, cheerleading, potholing, rowing and archery. York Sport Union club membership is free and the University is investing in support to all clubs and athletes through coaching and development. York is actively working to maximise opportunities for everyone by working with Sport England and local clubs to increase participation for all of its students.
Most clubs play within BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) along with regular leagues being organised through York Sport Union. York also co-hosts the UK’s largest inter-university event, the annual Roses Tournament, against the University of Lancaster.
York Sport Village and Sports Centre give you access to a wide range of first-class sport, health and fitness facilities, services and programmes. You can choose from a range of pay-as-you-go and membership options.
The University of York Students’ Union (YUSU) co-ordinates a wide range of sport and social societies, provides welfare support and volunteering opportunities, campaigns on issues decided by students, and organises entertainment on and off campus, through working in partnership with the Junior Common Room Committees in each college. YUSU also runs an Advice and Support Centre, where students can drop in to get independent advice and support on a wide range of issues.
YUSU offers you the opportunity to get involved in a fantastic range of activities. There are over 200 student societies, covering many interests, including media, political parties, music and drama societies to cater for every taste. All these groups are entirely organised by and for students, and if none of them appeal, students have the opportunity of starting their own.
A huge entertainment programme is laid on for students through the Students’ Union venues: the Courtyard, the Glasshouse, the Lounge Bar and the D-Bar as well as the college bars. Right at the heart of the campus in Market Square there is a branch of Santander bank, and the YUSU shop.
Religion & Spirituality
The University Chaplaincy team is available to people of all faiths and none. It provides a focus for a team of faith contacts and it works with others to support the sense of community on campus. The Chaplaincy team consists of three full-time chaplains (Anglican, Catholic and Methodist) and a number of faith contacts for Bahaï, Baptist, Buddhist, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Quaker, United Reform and other faith groups.
The University maintains a range of spaces for prayer and meditation on campus. As well as the Quiet Place, near Heslington Hall, there are multi-faith prayer rooms in Wentworth College and the Ron Cooke Hub, and a designated Muslim prayer room in the Teaching Block in Alcuin College, where Friday prayers take place in term time.
Health & Wellbeing
All students are advised to register with a doctor as soon as possible after arriving in York.
At York you are a member of a college, even if you do not live in University accommodation. Each college has its own welfare team, which is there throughout the year, offering support and guidance. They can help with issues relating to college life, accommodation and activities.
Academically at York you are also assigned to a member of the relevant teaching department who acts as your supervisor. As well as supporting you in academic matters, the supervisor supports you in your personal development and well-being. Your supervisor will know something about your academic work as well as being familiar with your personal interests and progress.
The Student Support Hub, based in Market Square, is the first point of contact for all central student support-related enquiries. The friendly reception team in the Student Support Hub makes initial appointments and provides information for the Open Door Team, Disability Services and the Student Financial Support Unit. The Open Door Team is a confidential service that provides support for students with emotional, psychological or mental health difficulties. There is also Nightline which is a confidential listening and information service run by students.
The University can arrange academic support and adjustments if you have a disability or long-term health condition that has a significant impact on your ability to study.
York’s website is an excellent place to start to check out the range of events, activities and services on offer for York students. York Futures is the University employability initiative that brings together a range of opportunities and experiences for you to develop your skills, build on your strengths and stand out from the crowd. You can also check out those in-demand employability skills and see which activities will help you develop them. The initiatives include work experience and enterprise, ‘Find your Strength’ programmes, global programmes , York awards and volunteering.
Students can engage with the Careers Advice and Guidance team online or in person at any stage during their studies. On the website students can access case studies of alumni, which describe what working life in different areas is really like. The Careers Advice and Guidance team organise a programme of careers fairs and events held at the University, where students will have opportunities to meet with employers to explore future job options and find out about vacation placements. ‘Career In’ events are a great way to meet professionals in an informal setting, explore options and get advice.
In addition, there is a wide variety of Careers support on offer throughout the year in your department/faculty. This often includes drop-in careers advice sessions or bookable careers advice appointments.
Catered and self-catered
Catered (per week) (2020/2021)
Self-catered (per week) (2020/2021)
York is one of only a few universities in the UK that has a college system. The college is where you live in first year, as well as being the focus for your welfare and social life throughout your time at York. This makes the decision as to which college you apply for important and each of the seven undergraduate colleges on campus has its own distinctive identity, facilities and history. Each college offers different accommodation either being catered or self-catered with different layouts, types of bedroom, letting lengths, kitchen and bathroom facilities, and therefore there are options to suit all tastes. All colleges have Wi-Fi access, common rooms, laundry facilities, vending machines and a portering service, and some have a café, bar, restaurant or television room. The college system makes the transition from home to university much less daunting as it offers a homely community where students are taken good care of.
All college accommodation for undergraduates is within walking distance of the teaching buildings, as well as there being a free bus service between the Heslington East and West sites.
Although students remain affiliated with their college in second year students can move out into shared houses in the City of York which offers many good quality, competitively priced accommodation in a number of areas close to the University.
English Language Requirements
York's English language minimum requirements are:
|IELTS||6.0 with no less than 5.5 for each component|
79 with no less than 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 17 in writing
55 with 51 in all components
However most departments have a minimum requirement of at least IELTS 6.5 or equivalent and some require 7.0.
York offers a range of competitive scholarships for talented international students, who pay tuition fees at the overseas rate. International students are advised to check the University’s website for information on the type of scholarships, eligibility and the application process.
York is keen to make its international students feel at home as quickly as possible, so has a range of support services specifically geared to international needs to help them get the best out of their time at York. These include an Immigration Advice Service to assist students making visa extension applications, an orientation programme for new students in October and January, international representation within college welfare networks, English language courses and the International Students’ Association (ISA). ISA organises regular events for international and UK students to meet up. Many countries have their own YUSU societies.
York is there to help even before you arrive in the country with its international team making regular visits overseas, and advice and support available when you are submitting your application and preparing to study in the UK. The University can put you in touch with York students or alumni from your country through its International Ambassadors Scheme, so you can find out exactly what it is like to study and live in York before you arrive.