Falmouth University, located in picturesque Cornwall in the south-west of England, has been a center of creative excellence for over 120 years. The University offers over 50 undergraduate and 20 postgraduate subjects as well as a research-led postgraduate study. The University offers fantastic facilities, beautiful campuses and a warm and friendly community which make it an ideal place to study for anyone wishing to pursue a creative career.
STUDY AT FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
The University is situated over two closely located campuses – Falmouth Campus and Penryn Campus. The campuses are connected by frequent bus service. The University is organised into 10 departments which include the Academy of Music and Theatre Arts, the Cornwall Business School, the Institute of Photography, the Fashion and Textiles Institute, the School of Architecture Design and Interiors, the Falmouth School of Art, the School of Communications, the Games Academy, and the Institute of Photography. The University offers studio based and collaborative teaching and learning. Students come from all over the United Kingdom and the world to study at Falmouth. The University community is diverse and welcoming, and students feel at home not just on the campuses but also in the town of Falmouth itself.
Students learn through practical projects, work-based experiences and collaborative experiences while utilising state-of-the-art facilities. The University does not assess students through exams, instead students demonstrate their learning through individual and group-based projects. All students can access and use all the facilities at the University. Every student can undertake a work placement. On some courses work experience is optional while on others it is compulsory.
The University has a strong focus on sustainability. Campuses are heated through renewable energy and a sustainable travel policy is in place. There are loads of ways students can get involved in living a more sustainable and planet friend lifestyle such as regular beach clean-up days, working in the natural dye gardens, or joining an environmentally focused student society such as ‘Surfers Against Sewage’, The Vegan Society or the Green Society. The University also offers meat free accommodation.
The town of Falmouth has just over 25,00 residents and has a pedestrianised centre with many shops, cafes, and restaurants. The town in well-connected with a railway station and bus station and is about a 40-minute drive from Newquay airport that has connections to London and European destinations. Rail connections to London take about five hours and by bus connections to London take about 7 hours.
HISTORY OF FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
The University began as the Falmouth School of Art in 1902 and was later known as the Falmouth College of Art and Design and then the Falmouth College of the Arts. In 2012, it was granted university status and became Falmouth University. Today, it has just over 5,000 students across its 2 campuses. The Falmouth Campus is on the site of the original Falmouth School of Art and the Penryn Campus is on a 70-acre site that was formerly a convent school and is now the site of digitally oriented and performance teaching facilities as well as the student union, sports centre, and student accommodation.
SPECIALIST AREAS AT FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
Falmouth offers traditional creative subjects such as Fine Art, Drawing, Graphic Design and Architecture as well as subjects that represent new areas of the creative industries such as Esports & Live Streaming, Fashion Styling & Art Direction, Sustainable Festival Management and Data Science. Students collaborate on projects not just with peers in their own department but across departments and across disciplines. Every Wednesday afternoon, it is time for WOW (Workshops on Wednesdays) where all students are offered the opportunity to engage in creative workshops across the entire University. Additionally, the University runs a Workshop Week every year. During Workshop Week, all students can sign up for hundreds of workshops such as Lino Cutting, Metal Work & Soldering, Tie Dying, Collagraph Printing, Double Entry Bookkeeping, Creating Circles & Flounces, Pattern Making in Illustrator, Image Editing in Photoshop, Jewelry Making and Lampshade Making to name but a few!
Most undergraduate degrees are three years, and many have the option for a yearlong industry placement in the second year, making the degree four years. Additionally, the University offers Integrated Foundation Year Degree programs in most undergraduate subject areas allowing students to undertake an introductory and diagnostic year of study before going on to study their chosen subject area for three further years. An Integrated Foundation Year is excellent for students who have been away from study for a while, are picking up a subject they have not studied before, want some extra time to develop their portfolio or need some extra time to get used to university level study.
LIFE ON CAMPUS
Falmouth University is located over two campuses which are a couple of miles from each other and about twenty minutes bus ride apart. Buses between the campuses, to the town centre and other locations are frequent, inexpensive, and easy to navigate. Falmouth Campus is home to the Falmouth School of Art, the School of Architecture & Design & Interiors and the School of Communications. It is set in historical subtropical gardens and is ten minutes’ walk from a beautiful beach. It is also a short walk to the town centre. This campus offers an art shop, student union offices, places to study and socialise as well as a well-supplied food outlet. Students will find that all their classes are taught on one campus, but they are very welcome to use facilities on both campuses.
Penryn Campus is home to the Academy of Music & Theatre Arts, the Institute of Photography, the School of Film & Television, the Falmouth Business School, the Fashion & Textiles Institute and the Student Union, Sports Centre, and main libraries. It is also the site of the largest accommodation location which is called Glasney Student Village. This campus is set in rolling parklands and offers plenty of green spaces and gardens. It located semi-rurally and is a short walk to the village of Penryn. The campus offers a mixture of historical and purpose-built buildings. It is on Penryn campus that students can access the student health clinic, nursery, employability services and several places to eat and socialise. Buses for local connections arrive on campus frequently and there is also a bus stop for long distance travel. A railway station that offers local and national connections can be reached on foot from both campuses.
STUDENT SUPPORT AT FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
Students at Falmouth University can access a wide range of support services. The employability service, Realworks, offer advice and guidance from day one of studies through to graduation and beyond. Realworks offers students access to thousands of tools, resources, and e-learning to help them realise their potential and secure their career. They can build their resume, take practice interviews using AI technology, access weekly career workshops and specialist events, find employment opportunities, develop business ideas, or take the steps to going freelance. Realworks also offers Micro-Internships which are a unique working experience. All students get the opportunity to apply to a paid internship that develops professional skills over a period of 2-6 weeks. Student complete thirty paid hours over that period and learn a host of industry skills.
All Falmouth University students can access academic support to help them excel academically and creatively. The Academic Skills team of teachers and advisors can offer tips and learning support to help students to get the most from their course. This can help to fine-tune academic skills through lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials on topics such as essays and presentations, dissertations, working in a group, reading, and making notes as well as citing and referencing.
The Study Hub is another place students can go to get help with English. Study Hub tutors offer an English language programme to support and guide students who do not speak English as a first language by offering tailored Academic English seminars, Social English workshops, and much more. Sessions are weekly and students can join at any time.
Well-being and mental health support is also available at the University to all students to help everyone feel safe, supported and happy at university. A 24/7 counselling service and digital wellbeing space connecting students with the Student Support team and peer support groups are always available. In addition to digital support, students can access face to face mental health support from the friendly and professional Student Support team who are available to help with any issue.
The University is also able to advise students who may be facing financial hardship or budgeting issues. Students’ Union offers one-to-one appointments where students can get advice on budgeting. The University also has a hardship fund for those facing unexpected financial issues. The University encourages applicants to speak to Across the Pond during the application process in relation to concerns about money and finance.
FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY FACILITIES
The facilities at Falmouth are fantastic and meet all industry requirements. As a specialist university, Falmouth has invested heavily in the most up-to-date equipment.
Media equipment and facilities included four animation software studios, a dedicated stop-motion animation studio and a fully equipped newsroom, a green screen room and Xsens motion capture kit and VR/AR/MR equipment.
The Fashion and Textile Institute is centred around studio spaces on the Penryn Campus that cater for solo and group working. The Fashion & Textiles Institute houses a printmaking studio, digital fabric printers, professional fitting stands, ultrasonic welders, sampling facilities, hand looms, a digital controlled Jacquard loom, embroidery machines and industrial overlockers.
Performance spaces include a 200-capacity flexible theatre space, eleven high-specification performance and rehearsal studios, a digital box office system to support professional practice and high-specification performance studios for both acoustic and electronic music.
Photography facilities include multiple darkrooms and process areas, film and paper processing machines, photography stores containing a range of professional equipment for loan and a photo-microscopy laboratory.
Art and design students are very well catered for as they have access to their own individual studio space as well as creative studios that encourage collaboration. Art and design facilities include life drawing studios and workshops supporting painting and printmaking. Industry-standard facilities include animation and photography studios, as well as Mac and PC computing suites which are fully equipped with advanced design software.
Falmouth has one of the largest dedicated game development studio spaces of any UK university. Students have access to spacious, team-focused, professional-standard studios; as well as a dedicated craft room, breakout spaces and a range of industry-standard software, management tools and game engines. Large games development studios are open late during term time, encouraging creative collaborations between students. Students also have access to weekly life drawing sessions, motion capture suits, augmented reality and mixed reality technology and 3D printers.
The University has libraries on both campuses. The libraries offer extensive collections and provide a wealth of digital resources, magazines, specialist material and journals. Students have access to 30,000+ titles on DVD, Blu-Ray or to stream; image banks; news archives; business and creative databases; e-books and e-journals, all freely available. The Penryn library is open 24/7 throughout the term, with a supportive team of subject librarians, technicians, and archivists. There are also bookable solo and group study spaces that can be booked online.
SPORTS AND SOCIETIES AT FALMOUTH UNIVESITY
The Sports Centre and gym on Penryn Campus includes a spacious fitness studio with up to ninety of the latest stations from Pulse Fitness, including cardiovascular, resistance and free weights areas. A four-court sports hall is available for hire for a range of sports and activities, including 5-a-side football, tennis and badminton. The fitness studio runs a variety of fun, weekly classes from yoga and Pilates to circuits and kettlebells.
The Students Union is run by student and for students. The purpose of the Students Union is to provide a world class student experience for all students. It offers an advice service on a range of issues that is free, confidential, and impartial. Students can access advice on hardship support, budgeting and student funding entitlement, accommodation and housing, consumer rights, problems in the community, faith and liberation, drug and alcohol and more.
The Union also represents students and provides channels to ensure the student voice is heard through the elected SU Student Council who listen to students and speak on their behalf to the University and represent student views to external agencies.
The most exciting thing that the Students Union does is to support over 150 different clubs, interest groups and societies at the University. The groups are open to all students at student friendly prices. There are sports groups such as lacrosse, hockey, basketball and tap dancing. There are faith and cultural groups such as the African Caribbean Society, the Hispanic Society, and the Islamic Society. There are also lifestyle and hobby groups such as the Anime & Manga Society, the Birdwatching Society, Book Club, Horror Society and the Knitting and Crochet Society. There are also music and performance groups to join such as the Rave Society, the Songwriter’s Society, an Orchestra, and a Musical Theatre Society. The Students Union runs a Societies Fair at the beginning of the year where representatives are available from all the groups and new students find out more and sign up for as many groups as they like.
Every week the Students Union offers a range of social activities that anyone can join such as film screenings, horse riding lessons, looking at pond life under microscope, women’s basketball, craft sessions, business startup workshops, creative chill out sessions, pub tours, tools handling workshops, foam darts competitions, book swaps and vegan chocolate tasting sessions to name but a few.
For those who love sports, there are opportunities to play at a recreational level, or try out for one of the many sports teams to represent the University nationally against other universities or even against universities in other countries. The University has strong rugby, lacrosse, football, and netball teams. As Falmouth is in an area with excellent waves. The Surfing Society is one of the most popular groups with over 300 members. Water-based sports are extremely popular with sea swimming, gig rowing, diving, and sailing being amongst the most popular offering both opportunities to take up these sports and represent the University competitively.
ACCOMMODATION AT FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
The University offers accommodation in eight distinct locations. All undergraduate first year international students who apply on time are guaranteed accommodation. There are rooms reserved for postgraduate students too. There are residences on campus, adjacent to campus and in town. Accommodation is mostly self-catered but there are also meal plan options for those who want it. Both single and shared rooms are available. All halls of residence have kitchens and social spaces for residents. They are mostly organised into flats of between 6 and 8 bedrooms. Meat free and alcohol-free options are available. Accommodation includes all bills including heating, wi-fi and utilities. All bedrooms have their own bathroom and come with a bed, desk, chair, and storage. Laundry rooms and bike storage are available on site.
For those who do not want to live in University owned and managed accommodation, there is a wide variety of housing available in the private sector and the Accommodation Office can help students find somewhere to live. There are also house-hunting seminars and online lists of rental properties available.
Students come from over fifty countries to study at Falmouth University. The University welcomes them with a range of support mechanisms to make them feel at home and ensure their time at university is a successful and happy one. New students are given a mentor before they arrive at the University. The University also offers an airport pick up service from London. The University is made up of about 15% international students and is a diverse and tolerant community. All international students are offered free, term-time English classes on both campuses should they need it which are perfect for anyone looking to improve their social, academic and professional English language skills. One-to-one sessions are also available for those who need more personal help. The University was ranked the second safest university in England and Wales and the campus security team provides 24/7 security service and support as well as CCTV at some sites.
There are loads of opportunities to meet with other international students via social media, online group chats and student mentors. Students can also join the Language Connect Scheme to put them in touch with other students who want to meet up with similar minded people to share language and culture.
The University also hold bi-monthly intercultural café sessions which are a chance to meet people and celebrate diverse cultures in a relaxed space. Sometimes these sessions are informal and sometimes they have an activity or celebration in mind such as a games afternoon or celebration of the lunar new year.
The Multifaith Chaplaincy is a place where students of all faith and no faith can go for support to practice any religion or spirituality. The Multifaith Chaplaincy team provide pastoral care for everyone and manage spaces on campus for everyone to enjoy. They also connect students with faith communities within the local area. In the Multifaith Chaplaincy, students will find comfortable sofas, free tea and coffee, a big table for meals and conversation, a prayer and meditation space and plenty of books about religion and spirituality. Visitors often refer to the space as ‘a hidden gem’. A Muslim prayer room is also available with segregated prayer and separate washing facilities for men and women.
The Multifaith Chaplaincy also offers a full packed program of events for everyone to attend such as regular drop-in sessions, crafternoons, Catholic mass, free lunches, visits to the Chaplaincy Garden, bagel brunches, visits from rabbis, latke making demonstrations and carol services.
INDUSTRY CONNECTIONS AT FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
All students at Falmouth University can undertake work placements. Many degrees come with an optional professional placement year which takes place in the second year of study. During this year, students spend time working in a professional context, as part of a business or organisation. This can be on one role, or up to three, and must be for a minimum of 24 weeks. For international students with a student visa, the maximum duration of a placement year is 36 weeks. Students who undertake a professional placement find that everything they have learn while working in industry helps them to achieve a better overall degree grade.
Students also have the opportunity, through the Realworks employability service, to apply for a Micro-Internship which is a paid internship that develops professional skills over a period of 2-6 weeks. Students complete thirty paid hours over that period and learn a host of industry skills.
Graduates of the University are encouraged to join MyFalmouth which enables the University to stay connected with its graduates so they can access job opportunities, freelancing and business start-up advice, employability resources and the opportunity to work with the University on projects.
The University enjoys excellent industry connections. Academic staff have all worked in the areas they teach and most are still practicing their craft to this day. Academic staff are happy to share their connections with students. The University supports a creative agency called Mayn Creative that has a focus on photography and film. Mayn Creative bridges education and industry, offering clients the creative skills and fresh approaches of current and former students. In turn, students and graduates get to evaluate, enhance, and validate their skills in a commercial environment.
STUDY ABROAD OPPORTUNITIES AND INTERNSHIPS
The University participates in the Turing Scheme which allows students to apply to go abroad on a higher education placement for between four and eight weeks and receive funding to support their costs of living while abroad. This program is targeted to allow those who come from disadvantaged groups to benefit the most from the program and may not always be available to international students.
The University also supports work abroad placements which allow students and graduates to develop key skills to jumpstart their careers while gaining experience abroad. Work abroad experience is open to all students across all levels of study, from all backgrounds, and open to graduates during the 12 months after graduation.
Study Abroad opportunities are open to all first-year undergraduate students going into their second year and on some master’s courses and vary in length from 12 weeks to 5 months depending on partner institution and program. The process to apply for this must be started well in advance. Current Study International Partners include Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Emily Carr University in Canada, Nagoya University in Japan, Griffith University in Australia, and Cal Arts in the United States to name but a few. Current Study Abroad European Academic Partners include Volda University College in Norway, the Royal Academy of Art in the Netherlands, Bern University of the Arts in Switzerland, and Gothenburg University in Sweden, again to name but a few.
The University also offers Cultural Immersion trips which are shorter 4-week experiences comprising of study trips organised by the University in partnership with host organisations. Groups of 6-10 students travel to international destinations accompanied by Falmouth staff and stay in arranged accommodation. Students participate in curated or collaborative projects steered by the host organisation or attend local classes (not for credit). Cultural Immersion experiences are open to all current students across all levels of study except undergraduate students in their final year. Recent cultural immersion destinations have included Malaysia, Sweden, Italy and the USA.
EMPLOYABILITY AND CAREER OPPORTUNITIES
Everything at Falmouth University is about preparing students for fantastic careers. Students go on to work across the creative industries in both established and emerging areas of work. Realworks, the University’s award-winning employability service, is where students can go to access careers support and advice from day one of their studies through to graduation and beyond. Through Realworks, students have access to online tools, resources and e-learning to help them realise their potential. Realworks staff support teaching and deliver a packed program of activities including weekly careers workshops and specialist events. They support students who want to launch start-up businesses or go freelance. Falmouth University has joined an exclusive group of universities in the UK offering current students and alumni access to the Handshake network that offers graduate work opportunities, internships, placement opportunities and part-time work.
Realworks also offers Micro-Internships which give students the opportunity to apply to a paid internship that will develops their professional skills over a period of 2-6 weeks. They complete thirty paid hours over that period and learn a host of industry skills.
Many Falmouth University degree programmes have an optional year in industry. This is known as a Placement Year Degree. A placement year is an option usually taken after the second year on a three-year program, or after the third year if studying for a degree with an Integrated Foundation Year. It offers students the opportunity to build on what they have already learned their on their course by applying it in the real world. They spend time working in a professional context, as part of a business or organisation. This can be on one role, or up to three, and must be for a minimum of 24 weeks. For international students with a student visa, the maximum duration of a placement year is 36 weeks. Students are responsible for finding their own placement, with support from the Realworks employability team. The Realworks team helps with things like researching and identifying opportunities, CV building, practice interviews and will also post available placements on the student jobs portal Handshake. Throughout placement years, students are in touch with an academic member of staff from Falmouth who supports them and makes sure they are learning from and reflecting on their experience.
STUDY IN FALMOUTH, CORNWALL
Falmouth is in Cornwall, in the far south-west of England which is known for its beautiful beaches and countryside. The town has a population of approximately 25,000 people and students feel welcome and at home in the local community. Falmouth’s beaches are known for their cleanliness and accessibility. A range of watersports are available including sea-swimming, sailing, paddleboarding and diving. The Surfing Society at the University is one of the largest student clubs with over three hundred members.
Falmouth town is pedestrianised and has loads of independent shops, bars and restaurants. Based around a thriving harbour, Falmouth is a gateway to the beautiful Fal River which runs through an Area of Natural Beauty. The town is famous for its creative buzz with many art galleries displaying contemporary works and venues featuring independent films and live bands. The many reasons to visit include the fascinating maritime heritage, areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty along the Helford and Fal Rivers which are perfect for walking and exploring; watersports; boat trips running from the pier and quay; and plenty of cultural, music and artistic events. The well-known music festival, Boardmasters, takes place every year in the neighbouring town of Newquay.
The town of Falmouth is regularly voted one of the best places to live in the UK and is also one of the safest places to live in the UK. Cornwall is one of the least expensive counties to live in England.
Getting around the local area could not be easier with well-connected bus services to locations around the area including to and between both campuses. There are also three local rail stations for travelling both around the local area and for connections to larger cities including London. Newquay airport is about 40 minutes away and offers connections to cities around the UK and Europe. Long distance buses also connect the town to the rest of the UK at wallet friendly prices.
Students are never without something to do, whether is visiting local pubs, having a barbeque on the beach, surfing, or hiking in the beautiful surrounding areas – there really is something for everyone.
WHY STUDY AT FALMOUTH UNIVERSITY
Creative thinking is vital in all areas of the future economy - from fine art to robotics, events management to marketing. It's the key to unlocking new innovations, finding solutions to global challenges and engaging people to think, act and feel differently. Students at Falmouth are given the freedom, support and professional experiences to make their creativity count. Whether you study Computing, Architecture or Business, the University empowers students to question the way things are, find innovative solutions and establish their own unique voice in their field. With an abundance of inventive minds working across a vast range of disciplines, students fuel each other to push the limits of what creativity can do. Falmouth University students enjoy world-class facilities, industry practicing lecturers and a location like no other. They have great opportunities to connect with industry, collaborate with students across the University and learn the professional skills to make a real impact after graduation.