Northumbria University, officially the University of Northumbria at Newcastle, is a university located in Newcastle upon Tyne in the North East of England. A former polytechnic, it was established as one of the new universities in 1992.


Northumbria University has its origins in three Newcastle colleges: Rutherford College of Technology, which was established by John Hunter Rutherford in 1880 and opened formally in 1894 by the Duke of York (later King George V), the College of Art & Industrial Design and the Municipal College of Commerce.

Newcastle Polytechnic

In 1969, the three colleges were amalgamated to form Newcastle Polytechnic. The Polytechnic became the major regional centre for the training of teachers with the creation of the City College of Education in 1974 and the Northern Counties College of Education in 1976.[6]

University status

In 1992, Newcastle Polytechnic was reconstituted as the new University of Northumbria,[7] as part of a nationwide process in which polytechnics became new universities. It was originally styled, and its official name still is, the University of Northumbria at Newcastle (see the Articles of Government[8]) but the trading name was simplified to Northumbria University in 2002. In 1995, it was awarded responsibility for the education of healthcare professionals, which was transferred from the National Health Service.


City Campus East

The university has two large campuses. City Campus, located in the centre of Newcastle upon Tyne, is divided into City Campus East and City Campus West by the city's central motorway and linked by a £4 million bridge which in 2008 was officially opened by the former Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Lord Digby Jones.[9]

City Campus

City Campus East is home to the Schools of Law, Design and the Newcastle Business School (NBS). NBS and Law are housed in one building, and the School of Design is across a courtyard.

City Campus East, designed by Atkins, opened in September 2007, winning awards from The Journal newspaper and the Low Carbon New Build Project of the Year accolade.

City Campus West is home to the Schools of Arts & Social Sciences, Built & Natural Environment, Computing, Engineering & Information Sciences and Life Sciences. Also located on this campus is the University Library, Students' Union building and Sport Central, a £31m sports facility for students, staff and the community which opened in 2010.[6]

The Sutherland Building
Sandyford Road site, opposite Newcastle Civic Centre

The Sutherland Building, formerly the Medical School of Durham University,[10] which was a naval warehouse during World War II, and the Dental School of Durham University (1945–78) is the home of Administrative Departments including Finance & Planning and Human Resources, using the space vacated when the School of Law moved to City Campus East.

The Students' Union building, at City Campus West, underwent a multimillion-pound makeover with new lobby and recreational facilities, and a refurbished bar and cafe space, in summer 2010.

In September 2016 the Sandyford Building was acquired from Newcastle College.[11]

Coach Lane

A second campus[12] is located 2.6 miles (4 km) outside of Newcastle, on Coach Lane, and is known as the Coach Lane Campus at Cochrane Park near the A188 (Benton Road). It is in the Dene ward near Longbenton and round the corner from Tyneview Park; a large Department for Work and Pensions office, accessible via the Four Lane Ends Interchange.

The Coach Lane Campus is home to School of Health, Community and Education Studies. Coach Lane Campus has computing and library services; its own Students' Union, and sports facilities, including indoor courts, a fitness suite, outdoor rugby and football pitches, and an all-weather floodlit pitch.[13] A free shuttle bus scheme runs between the two campuses.

London Campus

Northumbria University has a campus in Central London that was opened in 2014. This campus concentrates mainly on business courses offering postgraduate Master of Science degrees in Marketing, Financial Management and International management but also offers a Master of Science in Cyber Security. The campus is located close to a number of underground stations such as Aldgate and Liverpool Street. Postgraduate students studying with Northumbria University at the London Campus can also gain an internship as part of their studies.

Organisation and structure

Northumbria describes itself as a comprehensive university, offering 30 of Britain's 32 most frequently chosen academic disciplines. It specialises in law and business, arts and design, computing, environmental science, built environment, applied healthcare, sports science and psychology, and teacher education.

Northumbria also offers 'clinical' courses in law accredited by the Law Society and Bar Council. These allow graduates direct entry to the profession. The institution's Student Law Office is a clinical legal education enterprise,[14] where law students participate in a legal advice and representation scheme on behalf of real clients, under the supervision of practising lawyers .

Northumbria University employs more than 3,200 people and offers approximately 500 study programmes[15] through four Faculties:

  • Faculty of Arts, Design and Social Sciences
  • Faculty of Business and Law
  • Faculty of Engineering and Environment
  • Faculty of Health and Life Sciences

Northumbria University Press is the university press, established in 2002. It is based in Newcastle upon Tyne and publishes a diverse range of books, including publications on language, photography, biography, travel and music.

Academic profile


Former Dame Allan's School

In the Research Assessment Exercise 2008 a small amount of research in nine of twelve areas submitted was described as "world leading".[16]

Reputation and rankings

Global rankings
(2018, world)
(2018, national)
(2018, world)
(2018, national)
National rankings
(2018, national)
The Guardian[22]
(2018, national)
Times/Sunday Times[23]
(2018, national)
British Government assessment
Teaching Excellence Framework[24] Silver

2017 testing accident

In 2017, the university was fined £400,000 after a sports science experiment gave volunteers a hundred times the safe dose. Two students volunteering in a study of the effects of caffeine were given a dose of 30g instead of 0.3g, because staff conducting the experiment tried to calculate the dose on a mobile phone calculator and misread the decimal point. Both were hospitalised and one reported loss of short-term memory.[25][26] A court hearing heard that the university had not trained staff in safety and had not carried out a proper risk assessment, and that the dose was above the level known to cause risk of death.[27]

Student life

Northumbria Students' Union is a campaigning and representative organisation. It is a charity currently exempt from registration and is led by five Sabbatical Officers (President and 4 Vice-Presidents) and a 19-member Student Council.

The Students' Union offers a range of student activities such as NSU/Community,[28] NSU/Media (Which encompasses NSU/TV, NSU/Radio, NSU/Life and NSU/Snaps),[29] NSU/Rag (Raise and Give),[30] NSU/Societies,[31] NSU/Employability,[32] Duke of Edinburgh awards[33] and Fast Friends.[33] It represents students in academic and non-academic matters through a nationally recognised School Reps and Postgraduate Research Reps Systems.

The university building contains several venues for students to socialise in a safe environment, chiefly at Habita (formerly Bar One), Domain (formerly The Venue) and Reds.

In 2011, Northumbria Student's Union received the National Union of Students award for best higher education students union.[34]

In 2016, Northumbria Student's Union received the National Union of Students award for Student Opportunities and runner up for the Education Award.[35]

Notable alumni

See also


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 March 2012. Retrieved 20 January 2011. 
  2. ^ "Vice-Chancellor's Office". Northumbria University. 13 February 2008. Retrieved 11 April 2008. 
  3. ^ a b c "2016/17 Students by HE provider, level, mode and domicile" (CSV). Higher Education Statistics Agency. Retrieved 25 March 2018. 
  4. ^ "Table 0a - All students by institution, mode of study, level of study, gender and domicile 2006/07" (Microsoft Excel spreadsheet). Higher Education Statistics Agency. Retrieved 11 April 2008. 
  5. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouWh-fsw9Sk&feature=youtu.be&has_verified=1
  6. ^ a b "History of Northumbria". Northumbria University. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  7. ^ a b "Northumbria University". The Independent. 2014-08-01. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  8. ^ "Northumbria University Instrument and Articles of Government" (PDF). [permanent dead link]
  9. ^ "Lib Dem parliamentary spokesman helps to open key footbridge". Newcastle upon Tyne Liberal Democrats. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  10. ^ Good Stuff. "Sutherland Building - Newcastle upon Tyne - Newcastle upon Tyne - England - British Listed Buildings". Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  11. ^ "Sandyford strengthens City Centre campus". Northumbria.ac.uk. 2016-09-19. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  12. ^ Weston Beggard. "University of Northumbria Campus... (C) Weston Beggard :: Geograph Britain and Ireland". Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  13. ^ "Coach Lane Campus". Northumbria.ac.uk. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  14. ^ "Student Law Office". Northumbria University. Retrieved 2017-02-06. 
  15. ^ "My Courses". Northumbria University. 
  16. ^ RAE 2008 quality profile for University of Northumbria at Newcastle, RAE2008 
  17. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2018". Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  18. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2018 - United Kingdom". Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd. Retrieved 8 June 2017. 
  19. ^ "World University Rankings 2018". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  20. ^ "World University Rankings 2018 - United Kingdom". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 5 September 2017. 
  21. ^ "University League Table 2018". The Complete University Guide. Retrieved 26 April 2017. 
  22. ^ "University league tables 2018". The Guardian. 16 May 2017. Retrieved 16 May 2017. 
  23. ^ "The Times and Sunday Times University Good University Guide 2018". Times Newspapers. Retrieved 24 September 2017. 
  24. ^ "Teaching Excellence Framework outcomes". Higher Education Funding Council for England. Retrieved 22 June 2017. 
  25. ^ "Northumbria University 'life-threatening' caffeine test fine - BBC News". Bbc.co.uk. 2017-01-25. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  26. ^ 25 January 2017 at 3:02pm (2017-01-25). "Northumbria University fined £400k after students almost die after taking equivalent of 300 coffees Tyne Tees - ITV News". Itv.com. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  27. ^ Henry Bodkin (2017-01-25). "Students left fighting for lives after taking enough caffeine for 300 cups of coffee in botched university experiment". Telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  28. ^ "NSU/Community". www.mynsu.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  29. ^ "NSU/Media". www.mynsu.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  30. ^ "NSU/RAG". www.mynsu.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  31. ^ "NSU/Societies". www.mynsu.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  32. ^ "NSU/Employability". www.mynsu.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  33. ^ a b "Fast Friends Trips". www.mynsu.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  34. ^ "Further Education Student Union of the Year".  Archived 10 June 2016 at the Wayback Machine.
  35. ^ "NUS Awards 2016". www.nusawards.org.uk. Retrieved 2016-12-01. 
  36. ^ Weatherall, Nicola. "Northumbria University to honour top names". The Journal. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  37. ^ "Officers of the Academy". BAFTA. 28 June 2012. Retrieved 19 December 2012. 
  38. ^ "In the news". Times Higher Education. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  39. ^ Eccles, Tom. "Gavin Brown". ArtReview. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  40. ^ "Leading designer waves farewell". The Chronicle. 9 July 2005. Retrieved 25 March 2018. 
  41. ^ a b c "Notable Alumni". Northumbria.ac.uk. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  42. ^ "Rick Dickinson". Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  43. ^ "BBC - Tyne - Sport - The Toby Flood interview". Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  44. ^ Sonia Sharma (15 February 2015). "Election 2015: North Tyneside constituency and candidates - all you need to know". nechronicle. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  45. ^ "Scott Henshall". Northumbria University. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  46. ^ "Louise Hopkins". Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  47. ^ "Emma Lewell-Buck to fight South Shields seat for Labour". BBC News. 11 April 2013. 
  48. ^ "Mate's monkey made Maximo!". The Chronicle. 11 December 2005. Retrieved 25 March 2018. 
  49. ^ "Guy Mankowski". Northumbria.ac.uk. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  50. ^ Smale, Will (2006-06-14). "Business Profile: Alexey Mordashov". BBC News. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 
  51. ^ a b "Notable Alumni". Northumbria University. Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  52. ^ "LPA - photographer profiles Zak Waters". Retrieved 15 July 2015. 
  53. ^ "Jason Holland". Northumbria.ac.uk. Retrieved 2018-03-25. 

Further reading

External links