University of Essex

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We have three campuses that make up the University of Essex, based in Colchester, Southend and Loughton. Though all campuses are in the county of Essex (East of England), each location provides a unique experience.

Colchester campus is located on the award-winning Wivenhoe Park. This 200-acre parkland, complete with lakes and ducklings, has won a Green Flag Award four years in a row. The tranquil grounds provide the perfect place to both relax and think big and was even named one of the best in the country (People's Choice Awards 2019).


Our facilities provide every necessity for day-to-day life. Whether you’re studying hard during the day in the Albert Sloman Library, a six-floor building containing over 1 million books overlooking the vistas of Wivenhoe Park. Or playing hard at night in our SU Bar or SubZero underground nightclub. You can find everything you need on Colchester campus. Here are just a few of the facilities available to Essex students:

- Lakeside Theatre
- The Essex Collection of Art from Latin America (ESCALA)
- The Salon
- Cine10
- Frisbee Golf course
- The Gym
- Sports Arena
- SU Bar
- Restaurants and cafes
- Grocery shops
- Banks
- Post Office
- Xbox/PlayStation zones
- Faith Centre
- And more...

The Student Union

At Essex, you’re not just a member, you’re part of a family with your own voice. You can speak to the SU reception for advice on university living e.g. Lost property, lockers, bus passes, prescriptions and more. You also decide which items are stocked in our shops, what drinks we serve in our bars, what student societies are set up, and more. Here are just a few of our existing societies:

  1. Anime and Manga
  2. Debating
  3. Essex Entrepreneurs
  4. Green Thumbs 
  5. Harry Potter 
  6. Origami 
  7. Pokemon Go
  8. Public Speaking
  9. St John Ambulance
  10. Video Games 
  11. Yoga & Meditation
  12. Photography

Visit the Student Union’s official website to learn more.

Support and wellness

Besides getting back to nature by taking a restorative walk in Wivenhoe Park there are several places you can go to get support.

Our SU offer free, impartial, and confidential advice. This covers anything from housing to harassment, from mental health to money. You can visit the SU office in person or give us a call. We do love a chat.

Mental Health Services

University can be a stressful time. People can struggle with living away from home for the first time or feel anxiety from exam stress. At Essex, we have a dedicated mental health services team, offering support for mental and emotional health. This includes professional assessment and referral for counselling or mentoring.


We are extremely proud to be the first university in the country to set up Nightline; a volunteer-run service that offers support to students every night during term-time. Created in 1970 as an anonymous phoneline run by Essex students for Essex students, Nightline has now become an aid for more than 1.6 million students across the UK and beyond.

Sometimes, just having a cuppa and talking to someone about your concerns can help reduce stress.

Courses and Fees


The University is split into three faculties: Social sciences, Humanities, and Science and Health. Each faculty is dedicated to research excellence as showcased in our ground-breaking research stories. Take a look at the subjects each faculty offers and explore the full range of courses online:

Science and Health

Actuarial Science
Biological Sciences
Biomedical Sciences
Computer Science
Data Analytics
Finance and Banking
Marine Biology
Occupational Therapy
Oral Health
Sport and Exercise
Sports Therapy
Electronic Engineering

Social Sciences

Business and Management
Childhood studies
English Language
English Language Teaching
European Studies
Global Studies
Human Resource Management
Latin American Studies
Modern Languages
Psychosocial studies
Social Work
Speech & Language Therapy
Translation & Interpreting


Acting, Producing, Stage Management
Art History
Film Studies
Hospitality and Events Management
Liberal Arts
American Studies
Creative writing

Entry requirements

At Essex, we want you to have the best opportunity for education. That’s why we consider a wide range of qualifications including 3 A-levels or the equivalent in BTECs, Open University courses, IBDC, QAA-approved Access to HE Diplomas and practicing professional qualifications.

Entry requirements differ between courses too, so there’s a subject for everyone. You can find detailed grade entry requirements on each of our course pages. Here you can also read about non-UK entry requirements based on EU and international qualifications.

Tuition fees

If you’re a new student applying from the UK or Channel Islands, our 2021-22 tuition fee will be £9,250.

If you’re an EU or international student tuition fees vary by course with prices varying from £16,850 to £19,670.

Student loans

UK students may be eligible to apply for a UK Government loan. This will cover your tuition fees and you’ll only repay this loan once you have completed your course and are earning over £26,575 a year.

You can learn more about our fees and funding options on the Essex website.

Bursaries and scholarships

We offer over 25 scholarships and bursaries covering a wide range of funding opportunities. You can use our Scholarship finder to check if you are eligible.

If you're an Essex graduate looking for further study, you may qualify for our Alumni Loyalty Discount of up to 33% off tuition fees for a year. In addition, a £1,000 bursary is available to Essex alumni who choose to study a selected Masters course on top of the Alumni Discount. That’s a double discount!




Colchester campus offers six different types of accommodation, so you can find what feels most like home to you. If you're used to a vibrant city life, then one of the six iconic Towers will give you the community vibes you're used to. If you like scenic views from your window, then the University Quays, The Copse or The Meadows would be a perfect choice, offering picturesque riverside views. If you want a cosy, home-from-home feeling, then look no further than the South Courts or the aptly named The Houses.

Pricing 2021/2022

The Towers - single room with shared facilities from £105.21 per week
The University Quays - single en suite room - £151.69 per week
The Copse - single premium en suite room - £171.29 per week
The Meadows - single room with shared facilities £158.69 or en suite £165.62 per week
The South Courts - single en suite room -£160.30 per week
The Houses - single en suite room from £145.46 per week


With guaranteed accommodation for all first-year students, The University Square provides all the security of home. Here you get the best of both worlds; a bustling, vibrant university set on a calming seaside location. You can choose between a single room with en suite or a self-contained studio apartment.

Pricing/Availability 2021/2022

The University Square
497 single rooms and 64 studio flats
Single en suite room from £152.67 per week
Self-contained studio from £188.30 per week

Open Days

Why come to an open day

Open Days at Essex are like none other. This is an event that students and staff alike look forward to all year! You may not believe in love at first sight, but we’ve been told that once you attend one of our Open Days, you never look back.

We host a live event three times a year on Colchester campus, buzzing with around 1,000 excitable future students. On this day you can meet the academics, speak openly to existing student ambassadors, tour the campus on Robbie the land train and explore our wide range of accommodation. Most importantly though, you get to feel the Essex Spirit in person and enjoy a day of fun activities around the squares.

At Essex, we work incredibly hard, so naturally we play hard too. We’ve done it all. Helter-skelters, Ferris wheels, Henna tattoos, zorbing, inflatable rodeo bulls, mocktail making, international food markets, *inhale* live shows, arts and crafts, marshmallow fire pits, stilt-walkers, live DJ sets, lake kayaking, bungee trampolining and so much more.

How to get here

The Colchester Campus is only 50 miles away from London, in the county of Essex (East of England). There are several ways you can arrive at campus:

By car

Our postcode is CO4 3SQ, however when you arrive in Colchester, follow road signs to the University (off the A133) to access to our main visitor car parks, which is via the B1028, Colchester Road. There is ample visitor parking in either:

  • Multi-storey car park (main visitor car park)
  • Valley car park
  • Car park B
  • North Towers car park
  • Wivenhoe House/Constable Building car park
  • Capon Road car park
  • Parking charges do apply.

By train

Greater Anglia provides frequent trains from London Liverpool Street to Colchester (also known as Colchester North). The journey takes just under an hour and you can get a bus or taxi from the station to us.

By bus

There are 3 bus options to get to Colchester Campus. First Bus provides the most bus services in and around Colchester. The Panther X15 provides services from Harwich to the University or National Express coaches run services from around the whole country to Colchester.

Virtual tour

If you’re unable to visit us, check out Virtual Essex, 24/7 365 days a year. Here you will find tours, talks and real student stories.

Open DayProspectuses

Upcoming open days
    • Saturday 17th September 2022
    • On Campus Open Day
    • Undergraduate
    • find out more
    • Saturday 15th October 2022
    • On Campus Open Day
    • Undergraduate
    • find out more

Living Here


About Colchester


Our hometown of Colchester is recorded as Britain’s oldest town, with a rich heritage of Saxon, Roman, and Norman history. If you’re interested in history, you can visit the local museums, galleries, and ruins that tell the story of how Camulodunum became todays Colchester.


Colchester is just 50 miles North-East of London, bordering sunny Suffolk. Perfectly situated between the bustling city and the peaceful countryside. You can access the bright lights of London within 50 minutes by train. Or if you feel like a trip to the beach, with just a 15-20 minutes’ drive, you can reach Brightlingsea Beach or Mersea Island. Essex has the longest coastline in the country, so bright summer days at the seaside (with a side of fish and chips) are just a short drive away.


There's so much to see and do around Colchester - from history and culture to spas and clubs. Here are some of our personal favourites.

  • Mercury Theatre
  • Tenpin Bowling
  • Aqua Springs Spa
  • Colchester Leisure Centre
  • Colchester Arts Centre
  • Bounce trampoline park
  • Ghost walks
  • Escape Rooms Colchester
  • The Three Wise Monkeys bar
  • ATIK nightclub
  • And many more…


This is Essex, need we say more?

Term Dates


Autumn Term
Thursday 8 October 2020* - Friday 18 December 2020       

*First year undergraduate students should arrive earlier than the start date shown to attend Welcome events.

Spring Term 
Monday 18 January 2021 - Friday 26 March 2021   

Summer Term          
Monday 26 April 2021 - Friday 2 July 2021

Tuesday 20 July 2021 - Friday 23 July 2021


Autumn Term
Thursday 7 October 2021* - Friday 17 December 2021       

Spring Term 
Monday 17 January 2022 - Friday 25 March 2022   

Summer Term          
Monday 25 April 2022 - Friday 1 July 2022   


Autumn Term
Thursday 6 October 2022 - Friday 16 December 2022

Spring Term 
Monday 16 January 2023 - Friday 24 March 2023

Summer Term          
Monday 24 April 2023 - Friday 30 June 2023

Travel information

University of Essex
Colchester Campus
Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ

University of Essex
Southend Campus
Elmer Approach,
Southend-on-Sea, SS1 1LW

Top Questions

What do you look for in your students?
We’re all about students with strong-minds and innovative ideas. Students who aren’t afraid to challenge the status quo and stand up for what they believe in. At Essex, we want you to speak up and make your voice heard, not just by a like on Facebook. We’re looking for students who want to make a real change in the world. Students that have bold ideas and are brave enough to share them.

What's the weirdest thing to happen at the university?
Several years ago, a cat named Pebbles wandered onto our campus and decided to stay. She liked being here so much, she was eventually adopted by our SU and is now better known as Campus Cat. She is warm and friendly and can often be found strolling through Colchester Campus or chilling by the lakes. Today Pebbles has a Facebook fan page with over 7,700 followers and has featured on BBC and ITV.

Do you have any famous or notable alumni?                 
We have an exceptional alumni community stretching across a range of industries. Blake Harrison is among our most recognisable alum. Harrison studied at our East 15 Acting school in 2007 before going on to play one of the most-beloved characters on the Channel4 sitcom ‘The Inbetweeners.’ Yes. Super happy, robot-dancing, fish-catching ‘Neil Sutherland’ started his journey right here. Since graduating, Harrison has conquered TV and cinema and has become a familiar face all over the world.

We are also proud to have had John Bercow, Former speaker of the House of Commons, Anushree Srivastava, Astrobiologist for the Mars mission and Simon Cox an award-winning investigations editor for the BBC all graduate from our university.

What grants/scholarships do you offer? 
We offer over 25 scholarships and bursaries covering a wide range of funding opportunities. You can use our Scholarship finder to check if you are eligible.

If you're an Essex graduate looking for further study, you may qualify for our Alumni Loyalty Discount of up to 33% off tuition fees for a year. In addition, a £1,000 bursary is available to Essex alumni who study a selected Masters course on top of the Alumni Discount.

What's university welfare and disability support like?
We are proud to be part of the Disability Confident Scheme. We are committed to creating an environment where every member is valued and able to flourish. We do this by following five essential guidelines: inclusivity, equality, confidentiality, knowledge building and flexibility. You can learn more and find support on the [email protected] website.

For guidance on accessibility on each of our three campuses, visit DisabledGo for detailed access-related information.

What support is available to students who are struggling for any reason? 
We have a dedicated Mental Health Services team, offering support for mental and emotional health. This includes professional assessment and referral for counselling or mentoring.

We are also proud to be the first university in the country to set up Nightline; a volunteer-run service that offers support to students every night during term-time. We’re always here for a confidential and anonymous chat.

Is it a campus or city-based university? What advantages do you think this offers? 
We are a campus-based university, set on 200-acres of award-winning parkland. Our surrounding grounds have won a Green Flag Award four years in a row and the People's Choice Awards in 2019. The restorative nature of the great outdoors is on your doorstep 24/7. Even getting away from your studies for 10 minutes will help reduce stress and keep a healthy work-life balance.

What sort of societies are there?
We offer over 150 societies across a broad range of topics including the arts, culture, music, politics, personal growth, religion, and more. There's something for everyone, from the Human Rights society to the Harry Potter fan club. Explore them all on the SU’s official website.

How far is the campus from the town centre and what is the public transport like?
Colchester Campus is just two miles from the town centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded town. The high street is just a short drive or bus journey away, or if you’re feeling fit it’s a 45-minute walk or 20-minute cycle.

What percentage of your students get a full time job after 6 months of graduating?
91% of our students are employed or in further education just six months after graduation (Graduate Outcomes 2020)

Roughly how many students start each year?
In an average year, we see a student body of 13,000 undergraduate students, 2,000-3,000 postgraduates and around 1,000 postgraduate research students.

What’s the ratio of male/female students?
We tend to see a ratio of 40:60 male to female students.