- Fees & Finance
- Students' Union
- Student Support
The University of Buckingham
Founded in 1976, the University of Buckingham holds a unique position in Higher Education in the United Kingdom. Like other traditional universities, Buckingham is a non-profit making charity and have a Royal Charter to award degrees and validate the teaching of Buckingham degrees across the world. But unlike other universities, they do not accept money from the government, giving them the freedom to choose their own path and to focus on the needs of their students. Buckingham’s three main priorities are quality, employability, and student satisfaction. The University was named The Times and The Sunday Times University of the Year for Teaching Quality 2015/16.
Buckingham is a picturesque market town. There are a number of high street names and supermarkets as well as specialist shops and traditional pubs. A market is held on Tuesdays and Saturdays. With good transport links to Oxford and London, you are never far away from city life either. Silverstone Circuit, the home of the British Grand Prix, is close by, as well as such nationally important places as Stowe House and Gardens, Waddesdon Manor, Claydon House and Stratford-on-Avon (Shakespeare’s birthplace). Bicester outlet village offers discounted luxury brands all year round and Milton Keynes boasts an indoor ski slope with real snow, a 16-screen cinema, and the most successful provincial theatre in England.
Complete University Guide
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Graduates in Work or Further Study
Young vs Mature
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Buckingham was founded after a letter was published in The Times on 27th May 1967 stating: “Is it not time to examine the possibility of creating at least one new university in this country on the pattern of those great private foundations in the USA, without whose stimulus and freedom of action the many excellent state universities in that country would be so much poorer.”
This idea was taken up by a number of people in the business and academic worlds and a suitable site was found in Buckingham. The University College at Buckingham (UCB) formally opened in February 1976 by the Rt. Hon. Mrs Margaret Thatcher, MP, as former Secretary of State for Education. It had 65 students.
In March 1983 the College was incorporated as The University of Buckingham by the granting of a Royal Charter, just seven years after it opened, satisfying the Department of Education and Science and the Privy Council that the standard of education was at the highest level. Following this grant, the customary nomenclature of Bachelor’s Degree (BA, BSc, LLB) was used. By 1984 student numbers had increased to 500.
Between 1982-1985 the University grew and the campus buildings were developed.
Buckingham sees itself existing side-by-side with the state-controlled universities, and to provide students with an alternative to institutions in the public sector. It now rests on firm foundations, providing traditional small-group Oxbridge-style teaching alongside the best of the new technology in a community which has the vitality of an independent enterprise.
The Hunter Street site, on the banks of the River Great Ouse, is home to the Schools of Business, Humanities and Medicine, the Radcliffe and Ian Fairbairn Lecture Theatres, and the Foundation Department. There are also halls of residence, the refurbished Students’ Union building (with Refectory, Bar and Fitness Centre), and the University Bookshop.
Verney Park is a ten-minute walk away. Here you’ll find the Schools of Law and Science, the Franciscan Coffee Bar, and further halls of residence.
The residential site at Moreton Road is located just to the north of the University. A free shuttle bus runs between the sites.
- Business School
- School of Education
- School of Humanities
- Law School
- Medical School
- School of Science
The University is home to research-active academics as well as dozens of keen research students reading for postgraduate degrees in their specialist areas.
Research ranges from molecular and genetic research into diabetes, to the psychological importance of music and the effects of government proposals on state and independent education.
International & Industrial Opportunities
Students may also apply for a 3 month study exchange with Erasmus+. The University also has a number of links outside of Europe including Mexico.
Buckingham offers a two-year honours degree, and studying for two years at Buckingham allows you to gain an equivalent degree to the one achieved in three years elsewhere. This is made possible by the restructuring of the academic year to provide an additional term each summer. This means that you fit in the same number of teaching weeks as on a conventional three-year programme, but your workload in any term is no greater. Some undergraduate programmes can also be studied over three years.
Fees & Finance
The annual fees at Buckingham are higher than other universities, however, because the programmes are two years you’ll save the cost of a whole year’s tuition and maintenance. In addition, you’ll start earning a salary a year earlier too.
It is estimated when living costs are included, students pay about 20% less at Buckingham than they would on a three-year programme at a university charging £9,250 per annum for tuition.
Student Finance England (SFE) currently gives eligible undergraduate students a loan of £6,165 per annum towards their tuition fees. Students are required to finance the balance sum.
The Five Counties Scholarship worth £2,000 per annum is available to UK/EU students on two-year undergraduate degree courses from Buckinghamshire (including Milton Keynes), Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire or Hertfordshire. All awards are subject to you meeting the University’s academic entry requirements and have been offered a place to study at Buckingham.
The High Achiever Scholarship worth £2,000 per annum is available to undergraduate Home (UK/EU) students (excluding Medicine) achieving AAB or above (or equivalent) in their A Levels (excluding General Studies). The scholarship is dependent on you making Buckingham your firm UCAS choice, or making a firm acceptance of a direct offer of a place.
Buckingham Bursary of £1,100 per annum is offered automatically to those UK students (excluding Medicine) in receipt of a maintenance loan of £5,000 or more per annum.
The Diversity in Computing Bursary award of £2,000 each towards the cost of tuition fees, are available to female, undergraduate Computing students. To qualify for this bursary, you must meet any conditions of your offer and make The University of Buckingham your firm UCAS choice, or make a firm acceptance of a direct offer of a place.
The University has two libraries, both of which have been upgraded to provide increased social study space and improved computer access. The Franciscan Library at Verney Park, services the Law, Medicine and Sciences, while the Hunter Street library caters for all other disciplines. The libraries hold extensive subject collections and electronic resources gives access to the full text of many journal articles, e-books, databases and reports.
Open access computer rooms are available to students around the clock, while wireless internet access is provided in the libraries and at many hotspot locations across the campus.
Programme-specific facilities include dedicated teaching and research laboratories for Applied Computing; and a range of resources for language learning, including a round-the-clock access to satellite television / video, listening and computer-assisted language learning facilities.
The University’s Sport and Fitness programme offers students of all abilities the opportunity to participate in a wide range of activities, at either recreational or competitive level. You can join the Tanlaw Mill Fitness Centre, which is well equipped with free weights, resistance and cardiovascular equipment, while you can also take an exercise class, have a game of squash or badminton, or participate in any of over a dozen other sporting activities that the University offers. The University’s sports field is equipped with a floodlit training area, sports pavilion and changing facilities. There is also access to an all-weather pitch for all-year round activities.
At the heart of student life is the restored Tanlaw Mill. Here you will find the Student’s Union (SU) restaurant, the Refectory (open for breakfast, lunch and dinner) and the Student Bar. The Student Bar offers the cheapest beer and latest opening hours around, and there are regular Karaoke evenings, Open Mic nights, quizzes and pool tournaments. There are parties with live music or DJs during the term time.
At the Verney Park campus, you will find CaféDirect, which serves freshly ground fair-trade coffee and a wide range of other fair-trade products which are available to eat in or take away. Here, you’ll also find common rooms in the SU ‘Cellars’.
The SU organises trips to nightclubs in London, Oxford and Milton Keynes, as well as more cultural visits both in this country and in Europe. For those who prefer more academic or artistic pursuits, there is a range of clubs and societies, from the Law Society to the Choral Society. There is a termly series of lectures led by distinguished speakers, and concerts that are open to all.
Religion & Spirituality
The University does not offer a chaplaincy service. However included on the web site www.buckingham.ac.uk/life/buck/worship are a list of bona fide places of worship for different religious faiths.
Health & Wellbeing
The Student Welfare team provides personal and individual learning and welfare support to all students throughout their time at Buckingham. The team consists of a Welfare Advisor, a Learning Support Advisor, a Student Counsellor, and a Family Welfare Officer. You can visit the Welfare Department, if you’re unhappy or homesick, or if your work seems to be spiralling out of control, and there is always someone available to listen and to offer whatever practical support possible.
If you are ill or have a medical problem, the University doctors hold a regular surgery on campus during term time.
If you have a disability, the Learning Support Advisor can assess your requirements and ensure that where possible they are fully met.
You can use the resources at the Careers and Employability Hub, located on the Verney Park Campus to help you develop your employability skills and plan your career during your time at Buckingham. There is an extensive Careers Library, and career advisors are available to help you make a decision about your future. There are workshops to develop your job-search skills and events to attend, right through from your very first term, to graduation and beyond.
Self-catered (per week)
Most students who are new to the University choose to stay in one of the halls of residence for their first four terms. In their second year students usually choose to live off-campus with their friends: Buckingham has a wide range of rental property, some managed by the University and some by private landlords. However it is sometimes possible for you to live on campus throughout your studies.
You have a wide variety of rooms to choose from, spread over three campuses - Hunter Street, Moreton Road and Verney Park. All Buckingham’s study-bedrooms are fully furnished, centrally heated, and connected to the internet. With few exceptions, they have a wash basin and small refrigerator. There are a large number of en-suite rooms, and shared kitchens for when you want to cook for yourself.
Some halls of residence are designated as ‘quiet’ for those who prefer to live and study in peace (Sunley House, Bishop’s Court and Moreton Road). There are also eight small cottages suitable for married couples.
Each hall of residence has a Residential Assistant (a current student with experience of communal living) who will help sort out any minor problems. There is a 24-hour security service which deals with emergencies outside office hours.
English Language Requirements
Typically undergraduate students whose native language is not English must score an average of 6.5 (with 6.0 or above in each component) in the International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) examination or 87 (minimum component scores of Listening 21, Reading 22, Speaking 23, Writing 21) in the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL - Internet-based) examination.
If your score is below this, you can follow a Foundation programme where the minimum entry level is 5.0. If your score is slightly below 6.5 you can follow a one-term pre-sessional programme before starting your studies.