- University of Kent
University of Kent
The University of Kent is one of the country’s leading academic institutions producing world-class research, rated internationally excellent and leading the way in many fields of study.
University of Kent are a forward-thinking research institution, committed to the transformative power of education and research and to the development and support of our students and staff.
The University of Kent (formerly the University of Kent at Canterbury, abbreviated as UKC or Cantuar. for post-nominals) is a public research university based in Kent, United Kingdom. It was founded in 1965 and is recognised as a plate glass university. It is a member of the Santander Network of European universities encouraging social and economic development, Association of Commonwealth Universities and Universities UK.
The university has a rural campus north of Canterbury situated within 300 acres (1.2 km2) of park land, housing over 6,000 students, as well as additional sites in Medway and Tonbridge in Kent and European postgraduate centres in Brussels, Athens, Rome and Paris.
In 2014 the university was ranked 80th in the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings in Top 100 Universities Under 50 Years. Additionally, Times Higher Education also ranked the university 20th in the United Kingdom in 2015 though aggregating multiple ranking results into a comprehensive table of ranking tables. It is among a group of institutions to consistently score 90% or above for overall satisfaction in the National Student Survey. In 2013, nearly 28,000 students applied to the university through UCAS and 5,190 accepted offers of places. The average UCAS score achieved by entrants in 2014/15 was 363.
Schools / Colleges / Departments / Courses / Faculties
A university in the ancient city of Canterbury was first considered in 1947, when an anticipated growth in student numbers led several localities to seek the creation of a new university, including Kent. However, the plans came to nothing. A decade later both population growth and greater demand for university places led to new considerations. In 1959 the Education Committee of Kent County Council explored the creation of a new university, formally accepting the proposal unanimously on 24 February 1960. Two months later the Education Committee agreed to seek a site at or near Canterbury, given the historical associations of the city, subject to the support of Canterbury City Council.
By 1962 a site was found at Beverley Farm, straddling the then boundary between the City of Canterbury and the administrative county of Kent. The university’s original name, chosen in 1962, was the University of Kent at Canterbury, reflecting the fact that the campus straddled the boundary between the county borough of Canterbury and Kent County Council. At the time it was the normal practice for universities to be named after the town or city whose boundaries they were in, with both “University of Kent” and “University of Canterbury” initially proposed. The name adopted reflected the support of both the city and county authorities, as well as the existence of the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, which officially opposed the use of a name too similar to its own. The abbreviation “UKC” became a popular abbreviation for the university.
The University of Kent at Canterbury was granted its Royal Charter on 4 January 1965 and the first students arrived in the October of that year. On 30 March 1966 Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent was formally installed as the first Chancellor.
The University was envisaged as being a collegiate establishment, with most students living in one of the colleges on campus, and as specialising in inter-disciplinary studies in all fields. Over the years, changes in government policy and othe changing demands have largely destroyed this original concept, leading to the present state, which is nearer the norm for a British University. However, the four original colleges – Darwin, Eliot, Keynes and Rutherford – remain, each with their own Master. Woolf college opened in 2008 and Turing college in 2014.
The university grew at a rapid rate throughout the 1960s, with three colleges and many other buildings on campus being completed by the end of the decade. The 1970s saw further construction, but the university also encountered the biggest physical problem in its history. The university had been built above a tunnel on the disused Canterbury and Whitstable Railway. In July 1974 the tunnel collapsed, damaging part of the Cornwallis Building, which sank nearly a metre within about an hour on the evening of 11 July. Fortunately, the university had insurance against subsidence, so it was able to pay for the south-west corner of the building to be demolished and replaced by a new wing at the other end of the building. Building elsewhere included the Park Wood accommodation village and the Darwin houses in 1989.
In 1982 the university opened the University Centre at Tonbridge (now the University of Kent at Tonbridge) for its School of Continuing education, helping to enhance the availability of teaching across the county.
During the 1990s and 2000s the University expanded beyond its original campus, establishing campuses in Medway, Tonbridge and Brussels, and partnerships with Canterbury College, West Kent College, South Kent College and MidKent College.
In the 2000s the university entered a collaboration named Universities at Medway with the University of Greenwich, MidKent College andCanterbury Christ Church University to deliver university provision in the Medway area. This led to the development of the University of Kent at Medway, opened from 2001. Initially based at Mid-Kent College, a new joint campus opened in 2004. As a consequence of the expansion outside Canterbury the university’s name was formally changed to the University of Kent on 1 April 2003.
Part of the original reasoning for the name disappeared when local government reforms in the 1970s resulted in the Canterbury campus falling entirely within the City of Canterbury, which no longer has county borough status, and Kent County Council. In 2003 the name of the university was shortened to the University of Kent.
In 2007 the university was rebranded with a new logo and website. The logo was chosen following consultation with existing university students and those in sixth forms across the country.
The University of Kent set its tuition fees for UK and European Union undergraduates at £9,000 for new entrants in 2012. The fee level has been approved by the Office for Fair Access (OFFA). The university’s fee of £9000 was approved by Council on 1 April 2011 and was confirmed by OFFA in July 2011. The proposed changes to UK and EU undergraduate tuition fees did not apply to international student fees.
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