Coventry University is a public research university in the city of Coventry, England. It was established as a university through the Further and Higher Education Act 1992, and was formerly known as Lanchester Polytechnic until 1987 and Coventry Polytechnic until it was awarded university status.
With more than 27,000 students (as of 2013), Coventry University is the larger of the two universities in the city, the other being the University of Warwick. It has three campuses: one in the city centre of Coventry where a large majority of the university operates, one in Scarborough, North Yorkshire and one in London. The campus in Coventry is currently undergoing a £160m redevelopment programme. The university comprises four faculties and one school, and manages a number of commercial subsidiaries that provide business services to local and national organisations.
The university is a member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities, University Alliance and Universities UK.
Coventry offers more than 130 undergraduate degrees and 100 postgraduate degrees over its four faculties, as well as qualifications such as foundation degrees and Higher National Diplomas (HNDs). It has introduced the teaching of disaster management at undergraduate level (the first such course in the UK) as well as parapsychology and health journalism at the postgraduate level.
The university’s student body in 2014/15 consisted of 27,600 students: 21,525 undergraduates and 6,075 postgraduates. Part-time students in 2013-14 made up 15% of undergraduates and 39% of postgraduates. The drop-out rate for first year undergraduates is 8.9% and the undergraduate intake from state schools is 97%. The university employs over 1,800 academic staff and is the fourth largest employer in Coventry.
Tuition fees for undergraduate students at the university are variable and range from £7,500 to £9,000 depending on the degree programme, following the United Kingdom government’s decision in 2010 to raise the maximum limit universities can charge UK and EU students. The university cited the variable fee structure in explaining the rise in applications received for 2012 compared to the previous year, despite an overall national fall.
The Research Assessment Exercise 2008 classed that research conducted by the university in the subjects ‘Allied Health Professions and Studies’, ‘Computer Science and Informatics’, ‘Electrical and Electronic Engineering’, ‘Library and Information Management’, ‘Politics and International Studies’, ‘Social Work and Social Policy & Administration’, and ‘Art and Design’ contained elements of ‘world-leading’ research.
Nationally, Coventry is ranked 15th by The Guardian University Guide 2016, 23rd by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2016 and 48th by The Complete University Guide 2016. Internationally, Coventry is ranked within the top 700+ universities in the world by the 2014/15 QS World University Rankings.
Subject strengths in The Guardian 2015 rankings include Architecture (16th), Building and Town and Country Planning (7th), Design & Crafts (15th), Drama & Dance (19th), Mechanical Engineering (19th), Film Production and Photography (1st), Hospitality, Event Management and Tourism (5th), Mathematics (19th), Media & Film Studies (12th), Nursing and Midwifery (9th) and Social Work (10th). Strengths in The Complete University Guide include Hospitality, Leisure, Recreation and Tourism (13th) and Drama, Dance and Cinematics (20th).
The People & Planet Green League 2013, a UK ranking based on environmental and ethical performance, placed Coventry 43rd, gaining a ‘First Class’ rating. According to the 2013 National Student Survey, 90% of Coventry University students were satisfied with their course.
‘Modern University of the Year’ for 2014,2015 and 2016 by the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide. ‘University of the Year’ in the annual Times Higher Education (THE) Awards for 2015.
Coventry University’s Department of Industrial Design won the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education in the ‘Engineering and Technology’ category for “[e]ducating tomorrow’s world leaders in automotive design” in 2007. Coventry was named ‘Entrepreneurial University of the Year’ in the Times Higher Education Awards 2011.
The University is one of only a select few higher education institutions in the history of the Queen’s Awards to be honoured. In the awards’ 50th anniversary year, Coventry University has been commended in the International Trade category in recognition of its ‘continuous achievement’ since 2009.