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Aston University

UCAS Code: A80

Location: Birmingham, West Midlands Show on Map

Site: Single, self contained campus in city centre

A top UK research-intensive university

Student Population

Total Students:10,200
FE Students:0%


Total undergraduates:7,930
Full Time:92%
Mature on Entry:9%
UK Students:77%
State school entry:91%

Teaching Staff

560 full-time equivalent

Broad study areas

Business & management, modern languages & European studies, engineering & applied sciences, life & health sciences, social sciences


Admission Information:3 A-levels or equivalent expected (2 AS-levels may be accepted in place of a 3rd A-level, additional AS/A levels welcomed). Wide range of other qualifications accepted, including BTEC and IB and many international qualifications. UCAS tariff used for many programmes
Points on Entry (Mean):370
Drop Out Rate:5%
Accommodation:All first years housed on campus (if Aston is their first choice and they apply by deadline).


Founded:1895. University charter 1966.
Site:Single, modern, green 40-acre campus, in centre of Birmingham.
How to get there:Birmingham is at the centre of England’s rail, coach and road networks: mainline stations (New Street and Snow Hill both 15 minutes walk; and Birmingham International); coaches connect directly from 500 destinations; many motorway links; Birmingham International Airport close by. University is 5 minutes’ walk from city centre; extensive local transport.

Student services & facilities

Student advice & services:NHS university health centre (with 24-hour cover), dental surgery, optician, chaplaincy, student advice, careers advice, counselling service, accommodation office and nursery on campus; pharmacy 5 mins walk. Advice & representation centre provides financial help and support for students with disabilities (special accommodation on campus). Study skills programmes, learning develoment centre. The Hub provides a one-stop advice point for central university services.
Amenities:Students’ Guild has bars, club venue/concert hall, games room, general store, eating places, sandwich bar, print shop, stationery shop, laundrette, cashpoints, hairdresser, also runs 40 non-sporting societies and interest groups. General store, computer shop and bookshop on campus; city facilities close by (eg 5 mins walk to nearest major supermarket).
Sporting facilities:2 well-equipped sports halls, 25m swimming pool, squash courts, fitness suite (75 stations), sprung gym space for aerobics and martial arts, multigym, bouldering wall and 2 floodlit all-weather pitches on campus. Sports ground, 20 minutes away, has 10 pitches (including floodlit all-weather pitch), tennis and squash courts, cricket pitch, free parking and pavilion (with bar and café). Athletic Union offers 37 sports clubs.
Accommodation:On-campus accommodation for all first years who want it, many final year students and international students for their whole course (provided they apply by deadlines). Some 2300 places, all on campus and with internet access, some 85% ensuite: 350 self-catering places at £78 per week, 1950 ensuite places at £116−£129 pw; contracts 39-40 weeks, Sept–June. Additional residences owned by Guild of Students. Most 2nd year students live in privately-owned accommodation (student apartments in city centre, 5 mins walk from campus, or in suburbs of Erdington or Selly Oak): rents £60–£100 pw self-catering. Students' Guild provides help in finding private accommodation.

Study opportunities & careers

Library & information services:Central library with 209,000 monographs, 40,710 ebooks, 7400 electronic journals, 126 printed journals, 315 self-service online databases, computerised catalogues, circulation and information services, online access to databases throughout the world; audio-visual laboratory, 800 reader places (over 200 with IT facilities). Library open 80+ hours over 7 days/week (24 hours/day around assessment time). Information provision, £147 pa spent for each student (FTE).  1100 workstations (ratio workstations to students 1:6), all with access to library catalogue, intranet and internet, Blackboard Virtual Learning Environment; internet access from all student accommodation, plus most cafés, lecture theatres and common rooms. IT facilities open 24/7; helplines for IT support, and staff on hand in open-access IT rooms. Tours and presentations on library and information services for new students; core courses/modules on IT skills. IT infrastructure means all courses now available in virtual learning environment; most lectures recorded and accessible on Aston replay system.
Other learning resources:Multimedia language suites and new language e-learning labs with industry-leading software; CAD laboratories; extensive computing facilities; design studios and model shop; mathematics support centre, learning development centre; writing mentors; group work support. Social and study spaces on each floor of Main Building and The Loft (Students Union/Guild), with wifi access. 
Study abroad:15% of students spend 6–12 months abroad. Strong European/international focus in many degrees eg international business & modern languages, psychology & French etc.
Careers:Information and advice service; 200+ companies and organisations make recruitment visits each year. 4 pa graduate employment fairs on campus plus 2 national fairs at Birmingham NEC. High employment rate: 82% of graduates employed in graduate-level jobs within 6 months in recent years.


Living expenses budget:Minimum budget of £700 per month (excluding tuition fees) recommended by university.
Term-time work:Student jobshop advertises vacancies of up to 15 hours a week (70% believed to work). Work on campus in bars, restaurants, travel agency and summer catering. University helps finding holiday work off campus (numerous opportunities for part-time work in city centre, 10 mins walk) and short-term course-related placements. Many students on sandwich courses (sandwich year salary £15,000 pa).
Financial help:Income-based awards of £5000 for UK/EU students whose family income is up to £14.5k pa (£3000 in Year 1, £500 or £1000 pa thereafter), of £3000 (£500 or £1000 pa) where it is £14.5k−£18k pa, or of £1500 (£500 in each of 3 years) where family income is £18k−£42k pa. Scholarships of £1000 pa for students with grades AAB at A-level, or equivalent. £300,000 government access to learning funds, around 250 students helped (average award £500–£600); plus own funds including some for international students (mostly short-term help). Special help: single parents with childcare needs, students who are self-financing, mature or subject to financial difficulties for reasons beyond their control. Some international bursaries available (up to £3000 pa); also some travel bursaries and sports scholarships.
University tuition fees:Home students pay £9000 pa for first degree courses (£1000 in placement year). International students pay £11,700 pa (classroom), £14,700 (lab-based); £1990 in placement year. Fees can be paid termly


Academic features:

Close links with industry and business. All courses have strong professional element; unusually high numbers of students on sandwich or year abroad programmes (60% of students on sandwich courses). Combined Honours programme allows wide combinations of subjects, including languages in many courses. Engineering faculty offers BEng and MEng. Large business school and vision science department.

Awarding body:

Aston University

Main undergraduate awards:

BSc, BEng, MEng, MPharm

Length of courses:

BSc 3 years (full-time), 4 years (sandwich courses, MPharm); BEng/MEng 3–5 years (full-time and sandwich).

Main subjects offered:

  • Accountancy
  • Anatomy
  • Audiology
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Biochemical Engineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Biological Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Biomedical Science
  • Biotechnology
  • Business Administration
  • Business Economics
  • Business Studies
  • Cell Biology
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Chemistry
  • Communication Engineering
  • Computer Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Computer Technology
  • Computing
  • Construction
  • E-business
  • Economics
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electromechanical Engineering
  • Electronic Engineering
  • Electronics
  • Energy Studies
  • Engineering (General)
  • Engineering Mathematics
  • English
  • English as a Foreign Language
  • European Business Studies
  • European Studies
  • Finance
  • French
  • German
  • Health
  • Human Biology
  • Human Communication
  • Human Resource Management
  • Immunology
  • Industrial Design
  • Informatics
  • Information Systems
  • Information Technology
  • International Business
  • International Relations
  • Internet Technology
  • Interpreting/Translating
  • Law
  • Management
  • Manufacturing Engineering
  • Marketing
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Media Technology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Multimedia
  • Operational Research
  • Ophthalmic Optics
  • Optometry
  • Organisational Behaviour
  • Organisational Studies
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacy
  • Podiatry
  • Politics
  • Product Design
  • Production Engineering
  • Psychology
  • Public Administration
  • Social Policy
  • Social Studies
  • Sociology
  • Software Engineering
  • Spanish
  • Teacher Training
  • Telecommunications Engineering
  • Transport Studies

Student view

Maximillian Pullen (International Business and Management), Union President


What's it like as a place to live?

Aston is located right at the heart of Birmingham city centre, which hosts a diverse multicultural population, and a huge variety of social facilities, bars, clubs and restaurants. With such facilities only 5 minutes walk away, there is always something for students to do within a safe walking distance. Aston has a very strong community, and this is reflected in its buzzing green campus.

How's the student accommodation?

Aston has a variety of on-campus accommodation available, whether it be en suite or communal, to suit a variety of budgets.

What's the student population like?

The students really do make the university a great place to live and grow. Aston is a multicultural university (as all universities should be), and all the students are friendly and get along with one another. At Aston there are students from all different walks of life, from all around the UK, Europe and the rest of the World. No matter where you are from, your interests and culture, you will find lots of people like you at Aston.

How do students and locals get on?

Although the campus is within the city centre, it is somewhat secluded. This means that the vast majority of people you meet on the campus are academics or students, with locals only occasionally found by the campus lake. It is so easy to walk into the city centre amenities that are brimming with locals, that the slightly quieter campus sets a nice studious atmosphere - a home from home.


What's it like as a place to study?

There is a broad compilation of courses at Aston that allow the student to choose a particular discipline and earn accreditation towards external bodies, or a smaller number of courses that allow you to pick and choose optional modules to craft your own degree. With such a strong research lead, Aston's academics are always featuring up to date materials in their lectures, which makes studying a joy.

What are the teaching staff like?

Staff and students have a good rapport at Aston, with many academics actively encouraging students to discuss topics during open office hours. Tutorials are usually a small compilation of students that address particularly relevant issues with lecturers, and debate is always fostered. Peer mentoring and alumni outreach is also encouraged, creating a well rounded learning environment.


What are student societies like?

There are over 4000 people involved in sport clubs and societies, a brilliant number considering Aston is such a small student population! There are around 100 different sports clubs and societies, ranging from the original football clubs to the Gaelic Football society! There are social societies as well as cultural societies, so there is always something for everyone. To sign up to these societies or sport clubs we hold a Freshers’ Fair at the beginning of the year where they are all present, but if you miss out you can always join later in the year.

What’s a typical night out?

Each night of the week has a sponsored club night affiliated with the Students’ Union, catering for every need and want!

... And how much does it cost?

Some entry is free, the mean price is £4.

How can you get home safely?

The Students’ Union’s sponsored taxi service will take a group of students back to campus for a mere £5! During particular events such as Freshers’ Week they also operate the ‘Night Rider’ service, a free shuttle bus that operates within a 5 mile radius of the campus.




Is it an expensive place to live?

Students are renowned for being 'skint', so it is always good to budget your student loan rather than blow it on expensive clothes, for example. As Birmingham is such a popular student city the Aston University student card gets you discount across a variety of bars, clubs, eateries and shops. There are also various hardship loans available from the Students' Union, for those students whose budget has not stretched.

Average price of a pint?


And the price of a takeaway?


What's the part-time work situation?

Part time jobs are always available through the Students' Job Shop, along with CV enhancement and placement opportunities.


What's the best feature about the place?

Aston is small but mighty, with a diverse and vibrant student community, on the doorstep of England's second city!

And the worst?

Car parking in the city centre can be a problem, however as Aston is extremely close to rail links, and the city centre is on your doorstep, there is no need to drive!

And to sum it all up?

Its ASTONishing just how much you can do in such a short period of time at Aston, whatever your interests may be, Aston University and the city of Birmingham can cater for you!

More info?

Visit www.astonguild.org.uk or get alternative prospectus from the Guild President (0121 204 4826).



Aston University Birmingham
Aston Triangle
B4 7ET


0121 204 3000





Student enquiries:

Registry or Schools and Colleges Liaison



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