University of Chester: What it's really like
Find out more about University of Chester
Want to study at a smaller university in a historic part of the UK? Chester could be for you!
Chester at a glance:
|Locations||Chester, Shrewsbury, Warrington, and Birkenhead, UK|
|Undergraduate course length||Three years|
|Courses||There are six faculties: arts, humanities and social sciences; business; education and children’s services; health and social care; medicine and life sciences; and science and engineering.|
|Great for||Students who want to study in a smaller, historic city or picturesque town.|
|Not for||Students who want to live in a big, busy city during their studies.|
Connor, a Marketing Assistant at the University of Chester and alumnus of the university, tells us what it’s like to study there.
What is the University of Chester?
The University of Chester was founded in the 1800s as a teacher training college, so we’ve been around for a while! Our campuses are all in cities and towns in and around Cheshire and Merseyside, in the north west of England.
Studying at the university is all about making a difference in the world. Beyond the classroom, you can get involved in a range of clubs and societies to support your university experience here, and you’ll have a personal academic tutor to support your studies as well.
Why apply to Chester?
Students here feel they’re not just a number. Lecturers are really supportive, and get to know you, your interests, and what you want to do as a career. Classes are intentionally smaller so you get more one-to-one tuition from your academics.
Another reason to apply is that we offer a work-based learning module which gives you the chance to gain workplace skills you can use after you graduate. This usually takes place in your second year, when you will do a five-week placement that will form part of your overall grade.
We also offer lots of clubs and societies where you can make friends. This includes subject-specific societies like archaeology and psychology, as well as interest societies like gaming, Disney… in fact, it’s hard to think of a society we don’t have! In addition, we have an international student society, so if you’ve travelled here from abroad, you can meet students who are in the same boat as you and get advice on settling into the university and local area.
Who isn’t the right fit for Chester?
With just over 14,000 students at the university, we are a smaller community with some of our campuses based in towns rather than in the small city of Chester. So we may not be for those looking for a more busy, ‘city life’ experience from their university.
Any application tips?
The key point to remember when applying is to make sure the university is the right place for you. We offer the chance to chat to current students and staff on Unibuddy, so you can get a feel for the university remotely. Don’t be afraid to chat to our admissions team too. But we’d always recommend visiting in person via an open day or applicant day, so you can get a taste for the university, its facilities, and its location.
What’s the location like?
Chester is a historic city, set in Roman walls and with its own amphitheatre. The city is based on the River Dee, overlooked by Grosvenor Park, which offers about 20 acres of green space to relax in and explore.
On weekends, you can visit the world famous Chester Zoo or go to the Storyhouse, which has a cinema, theatre, and library. Students get free teas and coffees there, but there are plenty of independent coffee shops to choose from if you’d rather go elsewhere, as well as Chester Market for exciting food options.
The Warrington campus is in Times Square in the heart of the town. There’s a state-of-the-art cinema nearby, a market hall opposite, and lots of restaurants and shops in walking distance. Festivals like Neighbourhood Weekender take place here, plus it’s home to the renowned Rugby League team, Warrington Wolves.
University Centre Shrewsbury is also based in a town centre, with shops and restaurants all within walking distance. It’s on the doorstep of the Shropshire Hills, an Area of Outstanding Beauty, with a great arts scene and vibrant nightlife.
What facilities does Chester have to offer?
Our subject-specific facilities include state-of-the-art healthcare simulation suites for nursing students, and performing and rehearsal spaces for performing arts students. Teacher training students have access to resources rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.
Our libraries include private study spaces, laptops to borrow, and access to thousands of e-books.
There’s a gym onsite, a sports hall, sports pitches, tennis and squash courts, and a sprint track.
What is the accommodation like?
The university owns a lot of the buildings and accommodation nearby, with a range of self-catered and full-board options. There’s also local private accommodation we can recommend.
If you want to commute, you can book accommodation for a day or two to stay over at one of the campuses as and when you need to.
At our halls, there are first aid trained porters available 24/7; a residential life team made up of existing students to offer advice and support; and ‘flat chats’ to help you get the most out of your time here.
At Shrewsbury, halls of residence are a ten-minute walk from the campus. These offer stylish, modern rooms which are all ensuite.
How does the university meet the needs of students with different accessibility requirements?
Chester is a welcoming and inclusive student community. In addition to your personal academic tutor, you can engage with a peer mentor for extra support should you need it.
We offer support for people with disabilities, mental health conditions, parents, carers, mature students, and anyone else who may need it. The student support team is on-hand to advise on financial support like bursaries, mental health support like counselling, and further advice even before you apply.
Want to explore more UK universities? Remember, Unifrog’s Shortlisting tool can help you put together a list of great potential courses.
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