Birmingham City University

  • Entry Standards Entry Standards

    The average UCAS tariff score of new students entering the University.

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  • Student Satisfaction Student Satisfaction

    A guide to how satisfied students are with the quality of teaching they receive.

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    3.96 / 5.00
  • Research Quality Research Quality

    A measure of the quality of the research undertaken in the University.

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    2.64 / 4.00
  • Research Intensity Research Intensity

    A measure of the proportion of staff involved in research in the University.

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    0.14 / 1.00
  • Graduate Prospects Graduate Prospects

    A guide to the employability of graduates on completion of their courses at the University.

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    64.3 / 100.0
  • Student-Staff Ratio Student-Staff Ratio

    The average staffing levels at the University.

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  • Academic Services Spend Academic Services Spend

    A guide to how much the University spends on supporting services such as libraries and IT.

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  • Facilities Spend Facilities Spend

    A guide to how much the University spends on supporting facilities such as the careers service, health and counselling services and sport facilities.

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  • Good Honours Good Honours

    The percentage of graduates achieving a first or upper second class honours degree – the class of degree achieved can impact a graduate’s employment prospects.

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    65.2 / 100.0
  • Degree Completion Degree Completion

    The proportion of students expected to successfully complete their studies and gain a degree from the University.

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    86.5 / 100.0


  • The university’s contribution to transforming the prospects of the people of Birmingham and beyond stretches back though a succession of predecessor institutions for over 170 years.
  • The university enjoys historical strengths in the creative and performing arts: the Birmingham Government School of Design – the first college of design outside London – was opened in 1843 and Birmingham School of Music (later Birmingham Conservatoire) in 1886. Both were later incorporated into the university.
  • University status was achieved in 1992, and the new name of Birmingham City University was adopted in 2007, reflecting the university’s commitment to, and pride in, its home city.

Location and Transport

  • Birmingham City University is currently in the process of moving the majority of its teaching onto a single site at Eastside, in Birmingham city centre. Design and media courses moved there in September 2013, and Law, Social Sciences, English and Business followed in 2015. Birmingham Conservatoire is due to move into its own new building on the same site in 2017. Other locations are the School of Art, School of Jewellery and (until 2017) Birmingham Conservatoire elsewhere in the city centre; the City South Campus in Edgbaston, home to the University’s health courses and, from 2017, Education, Sport and Life Sciences; and the City North Campus in Perry Barr, home to the School of Education (until 2017).
  • Birmingham is located at the heart of the UK's road and rail networks. There are three city centre railway stations, and the city is at the centre of Britain's national coach network, connecting directly with 500 destinations.
  • Birmingham Airport has connections to Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North America, with further plans for expansion in the coming years.
  • Locally, a network of bus and train services provides easy access around the city, including all of the university’s sites. This is supported by the Midland Metro, a tram/light rail system, which has improved access to the city even further, with more expansion planned.


Entry Requirements

  • A wide range of qualifications, including Access courses, are accepted.
  • Highly competitive entry to Art, Design, Music and Acting courses dependant on the standard of a portfolio or audition performance.
  • Foundation courses may provide entry routes and degree progression for students with lower entry qualifications.

New-style AS and A Levels for some subjects will be taught in schools in England from September 2015, with further subjects being changed from 2016 and 2017. The first results for the new AS qualifications will be in 2016, and the first revised A Levels will be awarded in 2017.

  • New GCSEs will begin to be taught in England from September 2016. Further GCSE subjects will be taught in England from 2017. The first results of the reformed GCSEs will be awarded in 2017.
  • We will welcome applicants holding the new qualifications. We appreciate that the new qualifications can be a little daunting, but would like to reassure you that all qualifications, both old and new, will be considered equally and fairly by us.
  • Our approach to admissions is to always carefully consider the full range of applicant information when deciding upon whether to offer someone a place. Personal statements, references, predicted and actual academic achievement – and in some cases interviews, auditions and portfolios – are all taken into account.

Student Mix

The 23,335 students enrolled in the academic year 2014/15 comprise:

Level of study

  • Undergraduate 82%
  • Postgraduate 18%

Mode of study

  • Full Time 79%
  • Part Time 21%


  • UK 88%
  • EU 3%
  • Other 9%

Student gender

  • Male 38%
  • Female 62%
  • 23,337 students
  • 82% undergraduate, 16% postgraduate taught, 2% postgraduate research
  • 79% full-time, 21% part-time
  • 86% UK, 3% EU, 11% international
  • Male 37%, female 63%
  • State school 97%

Course Flexibility

  • Courses offer a wide variety of specialisms enabling students to choose and concentrate on their chosen area of interest.
  • Students are offered the chance to gain hands-on experience through year-long or shorter placements, giving them a real advantage in the jobs market.
  • Many courses can be studied part-time, allowing students to fit study around work or family commitments.
  • The increasing use of modern technology to deliver course materials allows students to access background reading and information at a time and place that suits them.
  • New Graduate+ scheme to embed career-related skills into every one of our degree courses.

Teaching Standards

  • Seven members of staff are currently National Teaching Fellows – the most prestigious award for excellence in university teaching and learning.

Around 40 courses have professional accreditation from organisations including:

  • Association of Chartered Certified Accountants
  • British Psychological Society
  • Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists
  • Landscape Institute
  • Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development
  • Gemmological Association of Great Britain
  • Royal Institute of British Architects
  • Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors
  •  Health and Care Professions Council

Employability skills, enterprise and practice-based project work are built into the curriculum, giving students hands-on experience of the sort of careers they may wish to enter.

  • An international perspective is incorporated into all courses, including the opportunity to study abroad for those who want to.
  • Courses have attained accreditation from relevant industry and professional bodies, where available.
  • The most recent audit by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education praised the 'close and sustained partnership' between the university and its students.

Research Standards

  • Alongside academic enquiry to create new knowledge and insights, the university is focusing on complex societal and economic challenges to address real-world problems and deliver tangible benefits regionally, nationally and internationally.
  • Almost 90 per cent of the university’s research was judged to have delivered ‘outstanding’ or 'very considerable' external impact (REF 2014).
  • The university’s ambitious investment plan will transform the quality, quantity and subject coverage of its research, increasing the number of research students across its core subject areas.

Academic Strengths

  • A high proportion of courses lead to professional as well as degree qualifications, with a strong emphasis on employment-related and practice-based education.
  • The university enjoys a strong reputation for art, design, media, health, teacher training, music and performing arts, and for relevant practice-based professional education.
  • The university’s Moodle virtual learning environment provides online access to resources and flexible approaches to learning.

Undergraduate Courses

Type of Qualification:

Mode of study:

Student Facilities

  • University libraries provide access to over 62m resources including books, journal articles, ebook chapters and conference proceedings.
  • Students can make use of virtual learning environments, such as the Virtual Case Creator in the Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences which offers complex, unstructured problems that realistically represent aspects of health practice.
  • Wireless access across the University, including Eduroam, for staff, students and visitors.
  • A one-stop confidential student enquiry service, Ask, to answer all student queries, including issues such as health and wellbeing, visas, student records, the Students’ Union, childcare, accommodation or IT.
  • The Careers and Job Prospects service offers impartial advice and support to current students wanting to find out more about work experience opportunities while they study, as well as identify opportunities available when they leave university and for up to five years after they’ve graduated.
  • The Centre for Academic Success provides students with access to a range of academic support services to help develop their study skills, including report writing, revision and exam techniques, stress management and time management.

Disability Services

  • The university provides practical support and advice for prospective and current students with physical or sensory disabilities, specific learning difficulties (e.g. dyslexia), autism or chronic medical conditions.
  • The university also provides information about additional funding, runs a personal assistance scheme, and offers a dyslexia screening and diagnostic service.

The postal address is Disability Services Team, Student Services, The Curzon Building, Birmingham City University, 4 Cardigan Street, Birmingham B4 7BD. Telephone +44 (0)121 331 7777; email

Students' Union

  • Students can join one of the many clubs and societies or represent the interests of the university community on the Student Council.
  • The well-established Advice Centre operates at most campuses to ensure all students have access to free, impartial and independent advice.
  • The Union offers the opportunity for students to help others and gain valuable experience by volunteering on a wide range of projects.
  • There is also a packed entertainments programme, with a variety of events taking place throughout the year.

Availability of Part-Time Work

  • The university’s in-house employment agency 'OpportUNIty – Student Jobs on Campus' provides students with the chance to apply for various part-time roles within the university, gaining experience through a formal application process, including the submission of CVs and interviews. Students receive feedback and assistance at every stage and, once in a role, they are supported in developing their employability skills in a number of key areas identified by the university in consultation with employers.
  • Our student enquiry service, Ask, offers access to full-time work, part-time jobs, work experience and internships via its online jobs board.

Careers Guidance

  • The Careers and Job Prospects team offers impartial advice about work experience and job opportunities to students at university and for up to five years after graduation.
  • Access job or work experience opportunities and internships through an online jobs board and benefit from face-to-face and e-mentoring support by students and professionals through the Ask@BCU and Inspiring Futures mentoring projects.

Recent/Prospective New Builds

  • The university is mid-way through a £260m investment plan, including a major expansion of its City Centre Campus, together with ongoing development of existing sites.
  • The Parkside Building, home to design courses and the University’s Media Centre, opened at the City Centre Campus in September 2013. A second phase of this development, the Curzon Building, opened in September 2015. It provides teaching space for Birmingham City Business School and the schools of English, Law and Social Sciences, as well as new library, IT and support facilities, offering a one stop shop for all student support needs.
  • A new £46m home for Birmingham Conservatoire will be constructed at the City Centre Campus site, due to open in 2017. The new Conservatoire will be a unique contemporary building, incorporating five public performance spaces including a fine new concert hall for orchestral training and public performance, private rehearsal and practice rooms, and teaching spaces for musicians from a variety of disciplines.
  • Health courses are based in the state-of-the-art Seacole Building at the City South Campus in Edgbaston, complete with a fully-functional radiography suite and 3D imaging diagnostic suite, mock operating theatre and hospital wards, a fully-equipped birthing room, a simulated home environment and a specialist resource room for speech and language therapy students.
  • A new building at the City South Campus will house the School of Education, and the university’s new Sports and Life Sciences provision, from 2017.

Notable Alumni

Birmingham City University graduates are shaping the world – holding senior positions in global companies, creating Oscar/MOBO nominated entertainment, teaching in world-class universities, policing the capital, and designing pieces for royalty and 10 Downing Street.

  • Laura Mvula - singer
  • Frank Skinner -  comedian
  • Jonnie Irwin - TV presenter
  • Marverine Cole - TV presenter
  • Catherine Tyldesley - actress
  • Tom Lister - actor
  • John Taylor - musician and Duran Duran founder
  • Jim Crace -  author
  • Stephen Booth, - author
  • Luke Perry, - artist
  • Ian Emes -  filmmaker
  • Jon Riche -  filmmaker
  • Makhdum (Mak) Ali Chishty - Commander in the Metropolitan Police
  • Ian Crawford - Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford
  • Mark Williams-Thomas - investigative journalist
  • Khalid Mahmood - politician
  • Andrew Higginson - chairman of Morrisons supermarkets

Further Details

Address Birmingham City University
University House
15 Bartholomew Row
B5 5JU
UCAS Code B25