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Exeter, University of

The University of Exeter is a leading research-intensive university located in Devon and Cornwall in beautiful South West England. The university was founded and received its Royal Charter in 1955 although its predecessor institutions, the Royal Albert Memorial College and University College of the South West of England, were established in 1900 and 1922 respectively.

The university is ranked Top 10 UK (out of 128) in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide (2017) and was described as being one of nine universities which form the UK’s unofficial "Ivy League”. 

The University has an enviable reputation for what is called “The Exeter Experience”.  Excellence in teaching, research and an outstanding student experience make Exeter a favorite international destination, now hosting 5,000 international students from over 140 countries. Exeter students are happy, confident and active. In 2015 and again in 2017 Exeter was voted the UK’s best university for “International Student Experience” (Whatuni survey). The University was also placed 1st in the Russell Group for overall student satisfaction (National Student Survey) and received a Gold award in the recent Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF 2017). 

With campuses in Exeter, Devon, and near Falmouth in Cornwall, students and staff enjoy some of the finest study environments in the UK. The Streatham Campus with an environment The Independent newspaper described as ‘sublime’, offers a unique setting in which to study, with lakes, parkland, woodland and gardens to enjoy year round.  St Luke’s campus provides a vibrant collegiate atmosphere in a traditional English setting.  Both Exeter campuses are located within the city of Exeter, an historic Roman city with an iconic mediaeval cathedral. The Penryn campus in Cornwall boasts stunning contemporary buildings on a site set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, close to the sea and fashionable port of Falmouth.

It is hard to pinpoint particular academic strengths as 30 different subject areas are ranked in their respective top 10 (Times and Sunday Times, Guardian Complete Uni Guide): Accounting and Finance, Anthropology, Archaeology, Biosciences, Business and Management, Classics and Ancient History, Drama, Economics, English, General Engineering, Geography and Environmental Sciences, German, Geology, History, History of Art, Hospitality and Tourism, Iberian Languages, Italian, Materials and Mineral Engineering, Medicine, Middle Easter and African Studies (Arab + Islamic Studies), Philosophy, Physics and Astronomy, Politics, Psychology, Radiography, Russian, Sociology, Sport Science and Theology and Religious Studies.

Research at Exeter is also strong across all subject disciplines. In the most recent (2014) Research Excellence Framework (REF) 98% of Exeter’s research was rated as being of international quality and 82% as “world-leading or internationally excellent”. 


The university has invested £500M in new teaching, recreational, accommodation and sporting facilities in recent years. A focal point of Exeter’s Streatham campus is the £50M Forum building which brings together all student services in one architecturally award winning building. An enlarged library (open 24/7), exploration labs, career zone and international student support sit alongside a supermarket, two banks, student bar and numerous restaurants and cafes.

The Students' Guild in Exeter and FXU in Cornwall are instrumental in organizing events and activities for students. In addition to on-campus entertainment including regular live music, there are more than 220 student societies (student clubs). Societies range from Archaeology, Beats and Bass and the International Society, to Lit Soc, Photosoc, Ski Club and Real Ale Society! There are various theater and music-based societies, orchestral and choral groups, and the region’s main theater, the Northcott, is sited on the Streatham campus.  On the Penryn campus, the Stannary, with a 1,300 capacity, is the social hub of the campus and has become one of Cornwall’s best live venues with gigs, comedy and club nights.

Exeter is also very sports-centered, having been designated the UK’s Sports University of the Year 2016 (Times and Sunday Times) as a result of its sporting prowess (top 10 UK) and teaching and research excellence in Sports Science. There are around 50 different sports clubs, an outdoor swimming pool at Streatham and an indoor pool at St Luke's.

Accommodation is guaranteed to all new international students entering their first year of studies once their academic offer is ‘firmly accepted’ (undergraduates via UCAS, Master’s students by a tuition fee deposit). There are many accommodation options to suit different budgets.

Exeter city center is a commercial and cultural hub for the South West of England, and is only 15 minutes' walk from both the Streatham and St Luke's campuses. As well as the big brand shopping and historical attractions of the city, there are many independent cafes, restaurants, bars and clubs. Dartmoor and Exmoor national parks are only half an hour away; a playground for outdoor pursuits such as hiking, climbing and horse-riding. 

On and around the Penryn campus you’ll find a fantastic student lifestyle with plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities. Nearby Falmouth is a vibrant town with a hip bar and café culture. The Cornish coastline is world renowned, offering great water sport activities and beach life. 

If you would like to find out more about Exeter University, please contact one of our Across The Pond Advisors.

Student population: 22,000

Number of international students: 5,000

City population: 120,000

Location: South West UK. Rural (but Exeter campuses within city boundary)

Closest airports: Exeter. Bristol (for transatlantic flights)

Date of establishment: 1955 (origins in mid-nineteenth century)

Areas of expertise: Humanities, Social Sciences, Biosciences, Environmental Science, Business

Cost of Tuition per year: From £16,900 per year (2018/19)

Accommodation cost: from approx. £100 per week, self-catered

Notable alumni: J K Rowling, Thom Yorke (Radiohead)

Exeter is GOLD

We are pleased to announce that one of our university partners, the University of Exeter, has recently been rated Gold for their teaching quality.  This rating is the result of the UK government's national Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). 

The Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) is a very ambitious program to assess the quality of teaching, learning environment and the outcomes for students completing higher education in each UK higher education institute.

Law Research at the University of Exeter

Dr. Sue Prince, an Associate Professor at the University of Exeter Law School is helping to bring online courts one step nearer to reality in England and Wales.The online courts would be used for civil cases and would be designed to help make the justice system more user-friendly. 

Professor Prince was part of a study conducted by a  group of experts that recommended online courts as they will provide greater access to justice and streamline the court processes.

Stephane Chui

Thanks to Across The Pond, I am now studying at the University of Exeter, one of the top universities in England and with one of the most beautiful campuses I have ever seen.

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Partner Testimonial: Exeter

An introductory video to the University of Exeter

Training Actors in Shakespeare - Study in the UK

Thanks to Across The Pond, I am now studying at the University of Exeter, one of the top universities in England and with one of the most beautiful campuses I have ever seen....

Stephane Chui