Are you hoping to land a place at one of the many excellent universities in South East England? With around twenty to choose from across Buckinghamshire, Sussex, Hampshire, Kent, Oxfordshire, Berkshire, and Surrey, it can be hard to know which one is right for you. That’s why we have created this handy, at-a-glance guide to help you decide where to apply. We’ll explore all the UCAS universities in the region, listed alphabetically for your convenience. Beneath each description, you’ll also find a useful area overview of the relevant county. Just read on to find out more.
Universities in South East England
Many of the universities in South East England are among the best in the country and the world. With no further ado, let’s get stuck in!
University of Brighton
The University of Brighton has four campuses in Brighton and Eastbourne on the south coast of England. It originally began in 1858 as the Brighton School of Art, which was based in the famous pleasure palace, the Royal Pavilion. Subjects include pharmacy, engineering, ecology, computing, mathematics, architecture, geology, nursing, teaching, sports science, journalism, criminology and business. Currently, the university educates around 18,000 students. In addition, the Student Union operates several shops and cafés on campus, which sell food, drinks, stationery and merchandise. Brighton University has also been recognised for its environmental and ethical performance and automotive engineering innovations.
The University of Buckingham
The University of Buckingham is the only UK independent with a Royal Charter. It’s also on the smaller side, educating around 2,700 students. Therefore, it’s a great choice for those wishing for more intimate class sizes and study sessions. Some honour degree programmes are only two years rather than three, which allows you to move on to further education or your chosen career faster.
The main campus is also a serene place to study, with the River Great Ouse snaking through it and historic buildings forming the backdrop to lectures. Students can also easily reach London, Birmingham and Oxford, with the nearest train station less than 20 minutes away in Milton Keynes.
Buckinghamshire New University
Buckinghamshire New University (BNU) has campuses in High Wycombe, Aylesbury, Uxbridge (for nursing students and healthcare research) and Great Missenden. Initially founded in 1891 as the School of Science and Art, the High Wycombe campus now features the modern RIBA award-winning Gateway Building. This state-of-the-art hub includes a café, sports hall, fitness centre, various studios, design and media suites, a learning resources centre, and meeting and conference rooms.
In addition, the university runs several specialist courses, such as commercial pilot training, which allows you to attain a professional pilot’s licence as part of your wider studies. The university also runs music management, film and television production, and animation and visual effects courses, plus a degree apprenticeship for new police entrants.
Canterbury Christ Church University
Once a Church of England teacher training college, Canterbury Christ Church University now teaches 15,000 students in Canterbury, Medway, and Tunbridge Wells. It happens to be the largest centre for public service education, including emergency services, social care, and teacher training.
However, it also offers a range of courses in the arts, social sciences and humanities, and STEM subjects such as engineering and medicine. Meanwhile, the Christ Church Sports Centre helps students and staff stay fit and active. Burn off steam here playing cricket, volleyball, badminton, football and netball. Alternatively, make use of the exercise studio, climbing wall and gym.
University of Chichester
The University of Chichester has been fuelling young minds for over 180 years in a city that offers plenty of history and culture itself. From the famous Chichester Festival to nearby beaches and easy links to the Capital, it’s the perfect place for students who like to socialise. Besides this, the university prides itself on knowing students by name and developing strong supportive relationships to help them thrive in their studies. It also welcomes international applicants and designs courses and special services specifically for them.
University for the Creative Arts (UCA)
A specialist art and design centre, the University for the Creative Arts is the natural result of various small art schools that popped up in Kent and Surrey in the 1800s. It now has campuses in Canterbury, Epsom, Farnham and Rochester, together with teaching bases at the Royal School of Needlework and The Maidstone Studios. UCA also boasts a project and exhibition space in Folkestone Creative Quarter. Educating around 6,000 students, the university offers a huge amount of courses in architecture, art, design, fashion, media and performing arts subjects. The UK’s first Business School for the Creative Industries is based at UCA Epsom too.
University College of Estate Management
Based in Reading, Berkshire, The University College of Estate Management (UCEM) provides distance learning courses in real estate development and construction. UCEM’s diploma or degree courses include surveying, construction, estate and property management, shopping centre management, and real estate. Many courses are accredited by professional bodies such as the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Chartered Institute of Building.
University Centre Farnborough
Based at Farnborough College of Technology, University Centre Farnborough offers degrees awarded by the University of Surrey. You can also choose to study accelerated degrees, which run for two years rather than the usual three. UCF has a dedicated building with facilities and study spaces, including a bright library with printed and digital learning resources and a Costa Coffee. The university’s small campus features natural lighting and many plants to encourage mental well-being. Classroom-based lectures add to the friendly and welcoming atmosphere.
The University of Kent
The University of Kent‘s main campus sits within 300 acres of parkland just north of Canterbury, with views over the city and Canterbury Cathedral. It also has campuses in Medway and Tonbridge in Kent and postgraduate centres in Brussels, Athens, Rome and Paris. With students from 158 different nationalities and 41% of its academic and research staff from outside the UK, it’s truly a cultural melding of minds. Besides all this, there is a dedicated student village on the western edge, several minutes’ walk from the main campus.
The University of Law (including De Broc School of Business)
With South East campuses in Guildford and Reading, The University of Law has 15 locations worldwide. All campuses are well-equipped and close to commercial centres, leading law firms and transport links. Besides being the oldest law school in the country, it also has an award-winning careers and employability service and a 5 Star QS rating. Subjects include law, business, criminology and policing and focus on real-world skills to prepare you for work. Additionally, the university has a £2m fund for scholarships and bursaries.
Medway School of Pharmacy
The Medway School of Pharmacy results from a collaboration between Greenwich and Kent Universities. Its campus is part of a shared facility on Chatham Dockyard in Medway, Kent. Here, you can study for a four-year Master of Pharmacy (MPharm) undergraduate master’s degree. This will allow you to apply for pre-registration training leading to registration as a pharmacist. In addition, you can pick from short courses, undergraduate foundation and BSc degrees and postgraduate degrees, including a BSc (Hons) Pharmacology and Physiology programme.
University of Oxford
The world’s oldest English-speaking university, the University of Oxford occupies a high position in every league table going. Famous for traditions such as academic dress for examinations, formal meals, balls, and punting, the university draws students for its unique environment. Oxford also operates the world’s oldest university museum and the largest university press.
However, you won’t find the university on a single campus. Instead, Oxford’s facilities lie throughout the city, which means students can access everything in a heartbeat. Notable alumni include 28 prime ministers, over 70 Nobel Prize laureates, Fields Medalists, Turing Award winners and Olympic medalists.
Oxford Brookes University
Oxford Brookes University has four campuses, including three in and around Oxford. Four faculties oversee a wide range of courses: the Oxford Brookes Business School; Health and Life Sciences; Humanities and Social Sciences; and Technology, Design and Environment. It also teaches law and architecture and runs a partnership with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). This allows ACCA students to earn a BSc (Hons) in applied accounting while taking their examinations.
University of Portsmouth
One of only four universities in the region to attain Gold in the Government Teaching Excellence Framework, the University of Portsmouth in Hampshire runs over 200 undergraduate degrees and 150 postgraduate degrees, as well as 65 research degrees. Some famous names who studied here include astronaut Tim Peake and Poet Laureate Simon Armitage.
University of Reading
The University of Reading is set within 300 acres of parkland in the market town of Reading, Berkshire. The main Whiteknights campus has won multiple Green Flag Awards and features many places to meet and socialise. Dating back to 1892, the university has since become a research-intensive institution. Currently, over 19,000 students from more than 150 different countries study here.
University of Southampton
The University of Southampton is one of the top 100 higher education institutions globally and a founding member of the prestigious Russell Group. It has seven campuses overall, with the main one in the Highfield area of Southampton. Courses include humanities subjects, ocean and earth sciences, medicine and health sciences, engineering and maritime technology and more. Meanwhile, there are 200 affiliated societies and 80 sports for students to participate in, along with a sports ground and centre on the main campus.
Southampton Solent University
It’s no secret that Southampton Solent University has a reputation for nurturing yachting champions. As well as this, it runs some of the world’s best maritime courses. Five faculties oversee 10,500 students on the main campus near the city centre, plus Warsash and Timsbury Lake. These are the faculties of Business, Law and Digital Technologies; Creative Industries, Architecture and Engineering; Sport, Health and Social Science; and the Warsash Maritime School.
University Centre Sparsholt
Sparsholt College is located in Sparsholt near Winchester and offers both further and higher education programmes. In addition, it has a secondary campus in Andover. Set within 450 acres of Hampshire countryside, the university’s 450 students study at HE level here. Current BSc(Hons) degrees include animal management, agriculture, animal science and zoo biology, equestrian science, veterinary nursing, ecology, and conservation.
University of Surrey
Founded in 1966, the University of Surrey currently has around 16,000 students – 6,000 from overseas. You’ll find the campus in Guildford, just a short train journey from London. It also features a sports park used as a training base for the London Olympics, alongside many eateries and cafés. In addition, Guildford’s town centre is easily accessible.
University of Sussex
The University of Sussex in Falmer, East Sussex, comes surrounded by the South Downs. In fact, it’s the only UK uni set in a national park. Plus, it’s just a few miles from central Brighton and an hour from London. Besides this, you’ll find cafés, restaurants, shops, medical and childcare facilities, and a bank and post office on site. The university also boasts two sports centres. Previous students include Nobel Prize winners, Fellows of the Royal Society and British Academy, multiple prize winners and eminent scientists, to name a few.
University of Winchester
Based in the Hampshire city bearing the same name, the University of Winchester teaches subjects from animal welfare and creative writing to law and sports psychology. Winchester prides itself on its small class sizes and holds its graduation ceremonies in Winchester Cathedral. The Student Union also runs 90 student societies, including performing arts, anime and manga, comic books, and debating societies. Some societies provide support and opportunities for specific courses such as history, politics or archaeology.
So, has our guide to universities in South East England helped clarify your choices? We hope so! Once you’ve bagged a place at your favourite, beat the study stress by exploring the top things to do in the region.