University of Derby guide - The Student Room
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  • University of Derby guide

    You might find yourself smiling as you arrive in historic Derby: in 2014 it was named one of the three happiest cities in the UK. With its friendly, down-to-earth vibe, the University of Derby certainly lives up to the city’s reputation. Its focus on real-world learning and practical skills is also fitting, given that Derby was one of the birthplaces of the industrial revolution.

    The university can trace its roots back to the establishment of the formidably named Derby Diocesan Institution for the Training of Schoolmistresses in 1851. After evolving in a college of higher education, it then gained university status in 1992 – one of the first colleges in the UK to do so. Today, the Derby campus makes up the city’s ‘university quarter’, and there are additional sites at Buxton and Chesterfield.

    Individual tuition is available no matter what course you pick, which means there’s a genuine personal touch to studying at Derby. The real-world learning element – using clever reconstructions of working environments for teaching, particularly those found within specialist industries – also seems to pay off for many graduates. 96.9% are in employment or further study six months after finishing their course.

    Notable alumni include the artist Paul Cummins MBE, famous for his installation of 888,246 ceramic poppies at the Tower of London, which commemorated those who died during the first world war.

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    At a glance

    What you need to know about the University of Derby

    Berby logo

    94th (Complete University Guide 2015)
    73rd (The Guardian's University Guide 2015)


    UK and EU undergraduates: £8,500 - £9,000 a year.
    International undergraduates: £10,445 – £11,010 a year.

    Total students (2014/15): 28,964
    Part-time: 5,310
    Full-time: 10,595

    Undergraduate: 13,894
    Postgraduate (taught): 2,910
    Postgraduate (research): 258

    Age range

    Under 21: 56%
    21-29: 34%
    30 and over: 10%

    Male to female ratio


    Information about open days at the University of Derby

    The University of Derby offers open days to all prospective students (undergraduate, postgraduate, and even online) so you can get an idea of the learning style, atmosphere and local area.

    Undergraduate students can attend subject talks, learn about student life, talk to the academic staff and tour the university and halls. Postgrads, professional students and part-time students just need to register at the welcome desk for a one-to-one consultation. Online students can register for a virtual open day presented as an online webinar.

    For the next Open Day dates please visit University of Derby Open Days.

    How to find it

    Derby is roughly 90 minutes by train from London, 35 minutes from Birmingham and 97 minutes from Manchester. The Unibus service links all University of Derby sites, the main halls of residence, Derby city centre and Derby train station. Buxton station, meanwhile, is a five-minute walk from the Devonshire Campus. The closest airport to Derby is East Midlands, whereas the closest airport to Buxton is Manchester.


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