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 two campuses: one in the city centre of Coventry where a large majority of the university operates, 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.
The origins of Coventry University can be traced back to the 19th century with the founding of the Coventry College of Design in 1843. Later renamed the Coventry School of Art, it was again renamed in the early 20th century to the Municipal Art School as part of the Education Act 1902. One final name change took place in the 1950s, when it became known as the College of Art.
In the late 1950s, to address the need for a high level of technical training in Coventry which the existing Coventry Technical College (now City College Coventry) could not meet, the construction of a new institution began. Opened in 1961, it was called the Lanchester College of Technology, named after Frederick Lanchester.
In 1970, the Lanchester College of Technology and the College of Art, along with the Rugby College of Engineering Technology in the neighbouring town of Rugby, amalgamated to form Lanchester Polytechnic. The institution was designated as such in February 1971 by then Education SecretaryMargaret Thatcher. The name Lanchester gave the institution a certain degree of obscurity, notably when none of the contestants on the BBC Radio 4 general knowledge show Brain of Britain could give its correct location. The polytechnic cancelled its graduation ceremony in 1974 following the Birmingham pub bombings in fear that public gatherings could be targeted; the ceremony was eventually held in 2009, 35 years later. Lanchester Polytechnic was later renamed “Coventry Polytechnic” in 1987, and when the Further and Higher Education Act 1992 afforded Coventry Polytechnic university status that year, the name was changed to Coventry University.
In 2010, a campus in London was established to further attract international students to the university. In 2012 “Coventry University College” was set up within the main university campus, offering qualifications up to degree-level at a lower cost compared to typical university fees.
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 consists of 27,270 students: 22,020 undergraduates and 5,250 postgraduates. Part-time students make up 25% of undergraduates and 42% 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, 42nd by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2015 and 48th by The Complete University Guide 2015. Internationally, Coventry is ranked within the top 800 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.
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.
Source: The content above was extracted from Wikipedia in July 2015.