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Students at universities in the South West of England and the South East outside London are less likely to be the victims of crime than students in the North, according to analysis of official police data by TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk

by David Jobbins
21 December 2017

TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk ranking gives the most authoritative picture possible of the crime rates for the most relevant offences affecting students at almost 130 universities and other higher education institutions in England and Wales.

After the South West, the South East is the second safest region in which to study, while the East of England, Wales and London are also above the national average.

 

 Robbery

 Burglary

 Violence & Sexual Offences

 Total

 South West

 0.94

 7.02

 26.59

 34.55

 South East

 1.13

 7.46

 27.44

 36.04

 West Midlands

 2.48

 8.28

 26.41

 37.16

 East of England

 1.44

 7.8

 29.97

 39.22

 Wales

 0.64

 7.25

 33.21

 41.12

 London

 4.1

 9.72

 28.38

 42.19

 East Midlands

 1.85

 12.42

 31.67

 45.93

 Yorkshire and the Humber

 1.85

 11.66 

 33.07

 46.61

 North West

 2.85

 11.73

 37.69

 52.3

 North East

 1.26

 10.12

 41.38

 52.82

TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk has taken professional advice on the crimes most relevant to students. It uses three offences: burglary, robbery and violence and sexual crimes. Universities are then ranked on the cumulative rate of all three crimes occurring over 12 months in those areas where students live in term-time. While these offences are the three of greatest relevance to students, the figures themselves are based on all victims in the locality, not just students.

As official data for crimes affecting students are not available, and universities do not publish any data on a comparable basis, the figures relate to all crimes within the three categories. They are not a direct measure of these crimes against students.

The Top Ten universities and colleges for low crime levels are:

 

 Institution

 Robbery

 Burglary

 Violence & Sexual Offences

 Total

 1

 Royal Agricultural University

 0.4

 6.1

 10.6

 17.1

 2

 York

 0.2

 3.3

 13.9

 17.4

 3

 Falmouth

 0.2

 2.2

 16.2

 18.6

 4

 Buckingham

 0.7

 4.2

 14.4

 19.3

 5

 Rose Bruford College

 1.4

 5.7

 15.2

 22.3

 6

 Reading

 0.6

 6.5

 15.6

 22.7

 7

 Winchester

 0.4

 4.8

 18

 23.2

 8=

 Harper Adams

 0.2

 6.2

 17

 23.4

 8=

 Oxford Brookes

 0.6

 6.6

 16.2

 23.4

 10

 Bath

 0.9

 5.8

 19.3

 26

 The ten universities with the highest levels of relevant crimes are:

 

 Institution

 Robbery

 Burglary

 Violence & Sexual Offences

 Total

 

 126

 Courtauld Institute of Art

 9.9

 15.8

 56.6

 82.2

 125

 Manchester

 6.7

 18.2

 48.6

 73.5

 124

 Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts

 4.1

 15.1

 53.8

 73.1

 123

 Bradford

 2.5

 14.3

 56.2

 73

 122=

 London School of Economics

 8.8

 17.2

 43.9

 70

 122=

 Royal Northern College of Music

 7.6

 14.5

 47.9

 70

 121

 Teesside

 1.8

 14.2

 50.3

 66.4

 120

 Southampton Solent

 3.1

 15.4

 47.1

 65.6

 119

 Leeds Arts University

 3

 16.6

 45.9

 65.5

 118

 Bolton

 2.6

 13.7

 45.4

 61.8

In 2016, TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk significantly revised its methodology so that comparisons with earlier years are not significant. They no longer relate to areas within three miles of the designated main campus. Instead they are derived from the term-time addresses given by students themselves. Figures for 2016 and 2017 are comparable.

Other key findings:

  • The rate for the three student-relevant crimes in the areas where students live in England and Wales is 43 per 1,000 residents
  • Burglary rates are lowest in the South East (7.02) and highest in Yorkshire and the Humber (11.66), the North West     (11.73) and the East Midlands (12.42)
  • Robbery rates are below two incidents per 1,000 residents in every region except for London (4.1), the North West (2.85) and the West Midlands (2.48)
  • Violence and sexual violence rates are lowest in the West Midlands (26.41) and South West (26.59), and highest in the North West (37.69) and North East (41.38)

Dr Bernard Kingston, principal author of TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk, said: “Despite suggestions that universities may be becoming more willing to disclose crime figures on campus, this has yet to be translated into reality, and, because there is no information on the impact of crime on students off campus, our figures are the best guide available for would-be students and their parents to assess the relative risks between universities.

“Our data accurately reflect the levels of crime of greatest relevance to students in the streets where they live while studying at university. They provide information that is not available to students from their prospective choices of university and which, alongside other advice, assist them to make informed decisions about where to live and study.

“In 2016 we refined our methodology to reflect the level of crime where students live while studying. This is fairer to universities in city centres or with multiple campuses.”

TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk publishes top tips to help students keep safe and secure their possessions.