University Guide

University of Plymouth

The University of Plymouth  can trace its origin back to 1862, with the University shaped in its present form when it gained university status in 1992, while absorbing the Plymouth School of Maritime Studies. The university was selected by the Royal Statistical Society in October 2008 to be the home of its Centre for Statistical Education. It also runs courses in maritime business, marine engineering, marine biology, and Earth, ocean & environmental sciences. The University of Plymouth is in South West England, Devon. The reputation for teaching has been recognised with a Silver rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework. 19,645 students are enrolled at University of Plymouth: - 17,795 of these students come from the UK - 610 come from other EU countries - And 1,240 are students from non-EU countries

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University of Plymouth

The overview

The main things you need to know about studying at the University of Plymouth.

  • Rankings

    The Times Higher Education ranked University of Plymouth as being in the top 500 universities worldwide, and placing 45th in The UK in 2024. The University is a modern, dynamic higher education institution, renowned for its high quality, internationally-leading education, research and innovation. Enterprising and practical in its outlook, almost two thirds of its research was rated ‘world leading’ or of ‘international quality’ in the most recent Research Excellence Framework, and it has world-renowned expertise in areas such as marine science and engineering, medicine, earth sciences and sustainability.

  • Employability

    The graduate outcomes for the University of Plymouth show that six months after leaving university, 96% of graduates are in work or further study. The average graduate salary six months after leaving the University of Plymouth, is £21,000 a year.

  • Fees

    Fees for UK students are £9,250 per year. For International Students this starts at £17,100 but can vary across courses. Find more information here.

  • Bursaries

    The University makes bursaries available to eligible students, with support ranging from help purchasing learning equipment such as laptops, to bursary support from foundations up to £1,500. More details can be found here.


An accommodation guarantee for a place in halls – either University-managed or from accredited private providers – to all undergraduates first-year students, provided relevant criteria are met. The University offers and operates 6 different halls of residence which include both catered and non-catered options. There is also a plethora of options offered by the city of Plymouth for students looking for accommodation.

Students' Union

University of Plymouth Students’ Union usually abbreviated "UPSU" is a non-profit making organisation and is one of the largest unions in the UK. The Union holds weekly and monthly events, and special events throughout the year. At the end of the welcome weeks each year the 'Freshers Ball' is open to all students; and the annual 'Summer Ball', which also includes food stalls, a fairground, a midnight cinema, headphone disco and a 'survivors' breakfast, has a number of stages and guest acts.

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University of Plymouth Students' Union
University of Plymouth Students' Union

Famous for

The University has produced famous alumni such as, TV Presenters Clare Nasir, and Michael Underwood, and politicians Mark Williams, and Laura Anne Jones. Alumni also include the world's youngest single-handed cross-Atlantic sailor Seb Clover.


Scientists from the University of Plymouth have started work on a coronavirus vaccine designed to prevent outbreaks similar to the current COVID-19 pandemic. Researchers at The Vaccine Group (TVG), a University spinout company, have already made significant progress in developing vaccines designed to prevent infections jumping from animals to humans. They are now looking to adapt its novel vaccine platform technology to prevent future human coronavirus zoonotic emergence.

AFS says

"Upon entering Plymouth, it’s easy to see that this is a city designed with student living in mind. With the university in the heart of the city, everything you need is just a short walk away".

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