University Profile: University of Southampton
League Table Ranking 2016: 14
Number of Students: 24,000, of which 70% are undergraduate and 30% postgraduate
Location: 75 miles from London, on England’s South Coast
The University of Southampton was officially recognised in 1952 as an institution awarding degrees, although its roots can be traced back to 1862 when a local eccentric, Henry Robinson Hartley, left his estate to the Corporation of Southampton for the promotion of study and advancement of science and learning. Today, Southampton enjoys an excellent international reputation for research, with over 97% of the University’s research groups and facilities assessed as world-leading. Ranked in the top 1% of universities worldwide, Southampton is a founding member of the Russell Group (the UK’s top 24 research-led universities) and boasts a particular strength in engineering, medicine, nursing, music and marine studies, which are all deemed to be leading departments country-wide.
Around 300 programmes are offered by the University of Southampton, spanning 66 subject areas. In 2013, the University introduced a unique programme of flexible learning, whereby students can choose to customise their course with interdisciplinary modules and major/minor options. This offers a unique opportunity for every student to pursue their own interests and study across subject areas, enriching understanding and preparing them more fully for the future. In addition, Southampton provides every student with the opportunity to learn a language – for free and with no assessment – alongside their degree, creating an enviable inter-disciplinary learning environment for all. Around 90% of those enrolled are pursuing full-time courses, and there is a healthy mix of domestic and international students (70:30) and males (44%) to females (56%).
All first year students who make Southampton their firm or insurance choice are guaranteed a room in University accommodation. A variety of halls of residence are available – from en-suite to shared bathrooms, catered to self-catered, campus or city – designed to suit each student’s needs and budget. All halls provide a safe and comfortable home-away-from-home, with complexes such as Wessex Lane and Glen Eyre providing a traditional ‘village’ feel with a variety of social amenities in addition to a range of room types.
The University of Southampton spans seven campuses, including one in Winchester (home of the prestigious Winchester Art School) and one in Malaysia. The main campus, Highfield, is set in beautiful green surroundings and is home to many innovative buildings, lively arts venues, and great sports and leisure facilities (including the flagship £8.5m Jubilee Sports Centre). The Hartley Library has recently been refurbished to the tune of £10m, offering a comprehensive collection of books, journals and historical archives, as well as a specialist on-site Learning and Assistive Technology Centre. One of the fastest European supercomputers, Idris4, is found on-campus, along with over 2200 computers with free Wi-Fi access. The University is also home to one the country’s leading venues for the arts – and a wind tunnel.
Students at Southampton enjoy a very high quality of life. Not only are they pat of a vibrant and well-connected coastal community, but also they are based in the second most affordable student city in the UK. The University of Southampton Student’s Union (SUSU) has over 300 clubs and societies to get involved with, including 80 sports clubs, 39 performing arts societies and an award winning student media team. SUSU is also home to a cinema, theatre, shop, and lettings agency, plus a number of social venues including a pub and Hollywood themed diner. Off-campus, Southampton offers a wide variety of entertainment options, from live music to West End plays and a great number of bars and restaurants to suit every taste. As an historic medieval city, Southampton is also blessed with a number of unique protected buildings, as well as the coastline and New Forest on its doorstep.
My Personal Statement Verdict: 4/5
Content was accurate at the time of compilation.