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, mottoeng = Through efforts to heights , established = 1825 – Birmingham School of Medicine and Surgery
1836 – Birmingham Royal School of Medicine and Surgery
1843 – Queen's College
1875 –
Mason Science College Mason Science College was a university college in Birmingham, England, and a predecessor college of Birmingham University. Founded in 1875 by industrialist and philanthropist Sir Josiah Mason, the college was incorporated into the University o ...

Mason Science College

1898 – Mason University College
1900 – gained
university status A university () is an institution Institutions are humanly devised structures of rules and norms that shape and constrain individual behavior. All definitions of institutions generally entail that there is a level of persistence and continu ...
by
royal charter A royal charter is a formal grant issued by a monarch under royal prerogative The royal prerogative is a body of customary authority, privilege and immunity, recognized in common law and, sometimes, in Civil law (legal system), civil law ...

royal charter
, city =
Birmingham Birmingham ( ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city and metropolitan borough in the metropolitan county of West Midlands (county), West Midlands in England. It is the second-largest city in the United Kingdom with a population of 1. ...

Birmingham
, province = West Midlands , country =
England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and Scotland to its north. The Irish Sea lies northwest and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. It is separa ...

England
, , coor = , campus = Urban, suburban , academic_staff = 5,495 (2020)
, administrative_staff = , head_label =
Visitor A visitor, in England and Wales, English and Welsh law and history, is an overseer of an autonomous church body, ecclesiastical or wikt:eleemosynary, eleemosynary institution, often a charitable organization, charitable institution set up for ...

Visitor
, head = The Rt Hon
Penny Mordaunt Penelope Mary Mordaunt (; born 4 March 1973) is a British politician who has been Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council since September 2022. A member of the Conservative Party (UK), Conservative Party, she has been M ...

Penny Mordaunt
MP
, chancellor = Lord Bilimoria , vice_chancellor = Adam Tickell , type =
Public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This is a different concept to the sociology, sociological concept of the ''Öf ...
, endowment = £134.5 million (2021) , budget = £774.1 million (2020–21) , students = () , undergrad = () , postgrad = () , affiliations = Universitas 21
Universities UK Universities UK (UUK) is an advocacy organisation for universities in the United Kingdom. It began life in the early 20th century through informal meetings of chancellor (education), vice-chancellors of a number of universities and principals of ...

EUA
ACU
Sutton 13 The Sutton Trust is an educational Charitable organization, charity in the United Kingdom which aims to improve social mobility and address educational disadvantage. The charity was set up by educational philanthropist, Sir Peter Lampl in 1997. ...

Russell Group The Russell Group is a self-selected association of twenty-four public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This ...
, free_label = , free = , colours = The University , website = , logo = The University of Birmingham (informally Birmingham University) is a
public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This is a different concept to the sociology, sociological concept of the ''Öf ...
research university A research university or a research-intensive university is a university that is committed to research as a central part of its mission. They are the most important sites at which Knowledge production modes, knowledge production occurs, along ...
located in
Edgbaston Edgbaston () is an affluent suburban area of central Birmingham, England, historically in Warwickshire, and curved around the southwest of the city centre. In the 19th century, the area was under the control of the Gough-Calthorpe family an ...

Edgbaston
,
Birmingham Birmingham ( ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city and metropolitan borough in the metropolitan county of West Midlands (county), West Midlands in England. It is the second-largest city in the United Kingdom with a population of 1. ...

Birmingham
, United Kingdom. It received its
royal charter A royal charter is a formal grant issued by a monarch under royal prerogative The royal prerogative is a body of customary authority, privilege and immunity, recognized in common law and, sometimes, in Civil law (legal system), civil law ...

royal charter
in 1900 as a successor to Queen's College, Birmingham (founded in 1825 as the Birmingham School of Medicine and Surgery), and
Mason Science College Mason Science College was a university college in Birmingham, England, and a predecessor college of Birmingham University. Founded in 1875 by industrialist and philanthropist Sir Josiah Mason, the college was incorporated into the University o ...

Mason Science College
(established in 1875 by Sir
Josiah Mason Sir Josiah Mason (23 February 1795 – 16 June 1881) was an English people, English industrialist, engaged in dip pen, pen manufacture and other trades, and a philanthropist. He founded Mason Science College in 1875, which later became the Unive ...
), making it the first English civic or 'red brick' university to receive its own royal charter. The present iteration of the university was modeled after
Cornell University Cornell University is a private statutory land-grant research university based in Ithaca, New York. It is a member of the Ivy League. Founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White, Cornell was founded with the intention to ...

Cornell University
. It is a founding member of both the
Russell Group The Russell Group is a self-selected association of twenty-four public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This ...
of British research universities and the international network of research universities, Universitas 21. The student population includes undergraduate and postgraduate students in 2019–20, which is the largest in the UK (out of ). The annual income of the university for 2020–21 was £774.1 million of which £168.3 million was from research grants and contracts, with an expenditure of £738.5 million. In the 2021
Research Excellence Framework The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is a research impact evaluation of British higher education institutions. It is the successor to the Research Assessment Exercise and it was first used in 2014 to assess the period 2008–2013. REF is underta ...
, the University of Birmingham ranked equal 13th out of 129 institutions on grade point average, up from equal 31st in the previous REF in 2014. The university is home to the Barber Institute of Fine Arts, housing works by
Van Gogh Vincent Willem van Gogh (; 30 March 185329 July 1890) was a Dutch Post-Impressionism, Post-Impressionist painter who posthumously became one of the most famous and influential figures in Western art history. In a decade, he created about 2 ...

Van Gogh
,
Picasso Pablo Ruiz Picasso (25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973) was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist and Scenic design, theatre designer who spent most of his adult life in France. One of the most influential artists of the 20th ce ...

Picasso
and
Monet Oscar-Claude Monet (, , ; 14 November 1840 – 5 December 1926) was a French painter and founder of Impressionism, impressionist painting who is seen as a key precursor to modernism, especially in his attempts to paint nature as he percei ...

Monet
; the Shakespeare Institute; the Cadbury Research Library, home to the Mingana Collection of Middle Eastern manuscripts; the
Lapworth Museum of Geology The Lapworth Museum of Geology is a geology, geological museum run by the University of Birmingham and located on the university's campus in Edgbaston, south Birmingham, England. The museum is named after the geologist Charles Lapworth, its orig ...
; and the 100-metre
Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower The Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower, or colloquially Old Joe, is a clock tower and campanile located in Chancellor's court at the University of Birmingham, in the suburb of Edgbaston. It is the tallest free-standing clock tower in the wo ...

Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower
, which is a prominent landmark visible from many parts of the city.
Academics An academy (Attic Greek: Ἀκαδήμεια; Koine Greek Ἀκαδημία) is an institution of secondary education, secondary or tertiary education, tertiary higher education, higher learning (and generally also research or honorary membershi ...
and
alumni Alumni (singular: alumnus (masculine) or alumna (feminine)) are former students of a school, college, or university who have either attended or graduated in some fashion from the institution. The feminine plural alumnae is sometimes used for grou ...
of the university include former British Prime Ministers
Neville Chamberlain Arthur Neville Chamberlain (; 18 March 18699 November 1940) was a British politician of the Conservative Party (UK), Conservative Party who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1937 to May 1940. He is best known for his for ...

Neville Chamberlain
and
Stanley Baldwin Stanley Baldwin, 1st Earl Baldwin of Bewdley, (3 August 186714 December 1947) was a British Conservative Party (UK), Conservative Party politician who dominated the government of the Interwar Britain, United Kingdom between the world wars, serv ...
,K. Feiling, ''The Life of Neville Chamberlain'' (London, 1970), 11–12. the British composer
Sir Edward Elgar Sir Edward William Elgar, 1st Baronet, (; 2 June 1857 – 23 February 1934) was an English composer, many of whose works have entered the British and international classical concert repertoire. Among his best-known compositions are orchestr ...
and eleven
Nobel laureates The Nobel Prizes ( sv, Nobelpriset, no, Nobelprisen) are awarded annually by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the Swedish Academy, the Karolinska Institutet, and the Norwegian Nobel Committee to individuals and organizations who make out ...
.


History


Queen's College

The earliest beginnings of the university were originally traced back to the Queen's College, which is linked to
William Sands Cox William Sands Cox (1802 in Birmingham – 23 December 1875 in Kenilworth) was a surgeon in Birmingham, England. He founded Birmingham's first medical school in 1825 as a residential Anglican-based college in Temple Row, where a blue plaque comm ...
in his aim of creating a medical school along strictly Christian lines, unlike the contemporary London medical schools. Further research revealed the roots of the
Birmingham Medical School The University of Birmingham Medical School is one of Britain's largest and oldest medical schools with over 400 medical, 70 pharmacy, 140 biomedical science and 130 nursing students graduating each year. It is based at the University of Birmin ...
in the medical education seminars of John Tomlinson, the first surgeon to the Birmingham Workhouse Infirmary, and later to the Birmingham General Hospital. These classes, held in the winter of 1767–68, were the first such lectures ever held in England or Wales. The first clinical teaching was undertaken by medical apprentices at the General Hospital, founded in 1779. The medical school which grew out of the Birmingham Workhouse Infirmary was founded in 1828, but Cox began teaching in December 1825.
Queen Victoria Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until Death and state funeral of Queen Victoria, her death in 1901. Her reign of 63 years and 21 ...
granted her patronage to the Clinical Hospital in Birmingham and allowed it to be styled "The Queen's Hospital". It was the first provincial teaching hospital in England. In 1843, the medical college became known as Queen's College.


Mason Science College

In 1870, Sir
Josiah Mason Sir Josiah Mason (23 February 1795 – 16 June 1881) was an English people, English industrialist, engaged in dip pen, pen manufacture and other trades, and a philanthropist. He founded Mason Science College in 1875, which later became the Unive ...
, the Birmingham
industrialist A business magnate, also known as a tycoon, is a person who has achieved immense wealth through the ownership of multiple lines of enterprise. The term characteristically refers to a powerful entrepreneur or investor who controls, through perso ...
and philanthropist, who made his fortune in making key rings, pens, pen nibs and electroplating, drew up the Foundation Deed for
Mason Science College Mason Science College was a university college in Birmingham, England, and a predecessor college of Birmingham University. Founded in 1875 by industrialist and philanthropist Sir Josiah Mason, the college was incorporated into the University o ...

Mason Science College
.Ives et al. 2000, p. 12. The college was founded in 1875. It was this institution that would eventually form the nucleus of the University of Birmingham. In 1882, the Departments of Chemistry, Botany and Physiology were transferred to Mason Science College, soon followed by the Departments of Physics and
Comparative Anatomy Comparative anatomy is the study of similarities and differences in the anatomy Anatomy () is the branch of biology concerned with the study of the structure of organisms and their parts. Anatomy is a branch of natural science that deals ...
. The transfer of the Medical School to Mason Science College gave considerable impetus to the growing importance of that college and in 1896 a move to incorporate it as a
university college In a number of countries, a university college is a college institution that provides tertiary education but does not have full or independent university status. A university college is often part of a larger university. The precise usage varies ...
was made. As the result of the Mason University College Act 1897 it became incorporated as Mason University College on 1 January 1898, with
Joseph Chamberlain Joseph Chamberlain (8 July 1836 – 2 July 1914) was a British statesman who was first a radical Liberal Party (UK), Liberal, then a Liberal Unionist after opposing home rule for Ireland, and eventually served as a leading New Imperialism, i ...
becoming the President of its Court of Governors.


Royal charter

It was largely due to Chamberlain's enthusiasm that the university was granted a
royal charter A royal charter is a formal grant issued by a monarch under royal prerogative The royal prerogative is a body of customary authority, privilege and immunity, recognized in common law and, sometimes, in Civil law (legal system), civil law ...

royal charter
by
Queen Victoria Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until Death and state funeral of Queen Victoria, her death in 1901. Her reign of 63 years and 21 ...
on 24 March 1900. The Calthorpe family offered twenty-five acres (10 hectares) of land on the
Bournbrook Bournbrook is an industrial and residential district in southwest Birmingham, England, in both the Selly Oak Council Ward and the Parliamentary District of Selly Oak. Prior to what is commonly termed the Greater Birmingham Act, which came in ...
side of their estate in July. The Court of Governors received the Birmingham University Act 1900, which put the royal charter into effect on 31 May. The transfer of Mason University College to the new University of Birmingham, with Chamberlain as its first
chancellor Chancellor ( la, cancellarius) is a title of various official positions in the governments of many nations. The original chancellors were the of Roman courts of justice—ushers, who sat at the or lattice work screens of a basilica or law cou ...
and Sir
Oliver Lodge Sir Oliver Joseph Lodge, (12 June 1851 – 22 August 1940) was a British physicist and writer involved in the development of, and holder of key patents for, radio. He identified electromagnetic radiation independent of Heinrich Rudolf Hertz, H ...
as the first principal, was complete. A remnant of Josiah Mason's legacy is the Mermaid from his coat-of-arms, which appears in the sinister chief of the university shield and of his college, the double-headed lion in the dexter. The commerce faculty was founded by Sir William Ashley in 1901, who from 1902 until 1923 served as first Professor of Commerce and Dean of the Faculty. From 1905 to 1908,
Edward Elgar Sir Edward William Elgar, 1st Baronet, (; 2 June 1857 – 23 February 1934) was an English composer, many of whose works have entered the British and international classical concert repertoire. Among his best-known compositions are orchestr ...
held the position of Peyton Professor of Music at the university. He was succeeded by his friend
Granville Bantock Sir Granville Ransome Bantock (7 August 186816 October 1946) was a British composer of classical music. Biography Granville Ransome Bantock was born in London London is the capital and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom, largest ...
.Keith Anderton, slevenotes, ''Bantock: Hebridean Symphony'', Naxos 8.555473, 1989. The university's own heritage archives are accessible for research through the university's Cadbury Research Library which is open to all interested researchers. During the
First World War World War I (28 July 1914 11 November 1918), often abbreviated as WWI, was List of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll, one of the deadliest global conflicts in history. Belligerents included much of Europe, the Russian Empire, ...
, the Great Hall in the Aston Webb Building was requisitioned by the
War Office The War Office was a department of the British Government responsible for the administration of the British Army between 1857 and 1964, when its functions were transferred to the new Ministry of Defence (United Kingdom), Ministry of Defence (MoD ...
to create the 1st Southern General Hospital, a facility for the
Royal Army Medical Corps The Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC) is a specialist corps in the British Army which provides medical services to all Army personnel and their families, in war and in peace. The RAMC, the Royal Army Veterinary Corps, the Royal Army Dental Corps a ...
to treat military casualties; it was equipped with 520 beds and treated 125,000 injured servicemen. In June 1921, the university appointed Linetta de Castelvecchio as Serena Professor of Italian: she was the first woman to hold a chair at the university and one of the first women professors in Great Britain.


Expansion

In 1939, the Barber Institute of Fine Arts, designed by Robert Atkinson, was opened. In 1956, the first MSc programme in
Geotechnical Engineering Geotechnical engineering is the branch of civil engineering concerned with the engineering behavior of earth materials. It uses the principles of soil mechanics and rock mechanics for the solution of its respective engineering problems. It als ...
commenced under the title of "Foundation Engineering", and has been run annually at the university since. The UK's longest-running MSc programme in Physics and Technology of Nuclear Reactors also started at the university in 1956, the same year that the world's first commercial nuclear power station was opened at
Calder Hall Sellafield is a large multi-function nuclear site close to Seascale on the coast of Cumbria, England. As of August 2022, primary activities are nuclear waste storage, nuclear waste processing and storage and nuclear decommissioning. Former act ...
in Cumbria. In 1957, Sir
Hugh Casson Sir Hugh Maxwell Casson (23 May 1910 – 15 August 1999) was a British architect. He was also active as an interior designer, as an artist, and as a writer and broadcaster on twentieth-century design. He was the director of architecture for t ...
and Neville Conder were asked by the university to prepare a masterplan on the site of the original 1900 buildings which were incomplete. The university drafted in other architects to amend the masterplan produced by the group. During the 1960s, the university constructed numerous large buildings, expanding the campus. In 1963, the university helped in the establishment of the faculty of medicine at the University of Rhodesia, now the
University of Zimbabwe The University of Zimbabwe (UZ) is a public university in Harare, Zimbabwe. It opened in 1952 as the University College of Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland, Rhodesia and Nyasaland, and was initially affiliated with the University of London. ...
(UZ). UZ is now independent but both institutions maintain relations through student exchange programmes. Birmingham also supported the creation of
Keele University Keele University, officially known as the University of Keele, is a Public university#United Kingdom, public research university in Keele, approximately from Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, England. Founded in 1949 as the University Coll ...
(formerly University College of North Staffordshire) and the
University of Warwick The University of Warwick ( ; abbreviated as ''Warw.'' in post-nominal letters) is a public research university on the outskirts of Coventry between the West Midlands (county), West Midlands and Warwickshire, England. The university was founded i ...
under the Vice-Chancellorship of Sir Robert Aitken who acted as 'godfather' to the University of Warwick. The initial plan was to establish a satellite university college in
Coventry Coventry ( or ) is a City status in the United Kingdom, city in the West Midlands (county), West Midlands, England. It is on the River Sherbourne. Coventry has been a large settlement for centuries, although it was not founded and given its ...
but Aitken advised an independent initiative to the University Grants Committee.
Malcolm X Malcolm X (born Malcolm Little, later Malik el-Shabazz; May 19, 1925 – February 21, 1965) was an American Islam in the United States, Muslim minister and human rights activist who was a prominent figure during the civil rights movement. A sp ...
, the Afro-American human rights activist, addressed the University Debating Society in 1965.


Scientific discoveries and inventions

The university has been involved in many scientific breakthroughs and inventions. From 1925 until 1948, Sir
Norman Haworth Sir Walter Norman Haworth Fellow of the Royal Society, FRS (19 March 1883 – 19 March 1950) was a British chemist best known for his groundbreaking work on ascorbic acid (vitamin C) while working at the University of Birmingham. He received th ...
was Professor and Director of the Department of Chemistry. He was appointed Dean of the Faculty of Science and acted as Vice-Principal from 1947 until 1948. His research focused predominantly on
carbohydrate chemistry Carbohydrate chemistry is a subdiscipline of chemistry primarily concerned with the detection, synthesis, structure, and function of carbohydrates. Due to the general structure of carbohydrates, their synthesis is often preoccupied with the select ...
in which he confirmed a number of structures of optically active sugars. By 1928, he had deduced and confirmed the structures of
maltose } Maltose ( or ), also known as maltobiose or malt sugar, is a disaccharide formed from two units of glucose joined with an α(1→4) glycosidic bond, bond. In the isomer isomaltose, the two glucose molecules are joined with an α(1→6) bond. Ma ...
,
cellobiose Cellobiose is a disaccharide A disaccharide (also called a double sugar or ''biose'') is the sugar formed when two monosaccharides are joined by glycosidic linkage. Like monosaccharides, disaccharides are simple sugars solubility, soluble in wat ...
,
lactose Lactose is a disaccharide sugar synthesized by galactose and glucose subunits and has the molecular formula C12H22O11. Lactose makes up around 2–8% of milk (by mass). The name comes from ' (gen. '), the Latin word for milk, plus the suffix ''-o ...
, gentiobiose, melibiose, gentianose,
raffinose Raffinose is a trisaccharide composed of galactose, glucose, and fructose. It can be found in beans, cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli, asparagus, other vegetables, and whole grains. Raffinose can be hydrolysis, hydrolyzed to D-galactose and su ...
, as well as the
glucoside A glucoside is a glycoside that is derived from glucose. Glucosides are common in plants, but rare in animals. Glucose is produced when a glucoside is Hydrolysis, hydrolysed by purely chemical means, or decomposed by fermentation (biochemistry), ...
ring tautomeric structure of aldose sugars. His research helped to define the basic features of the
starch Starch or amylum is a polymeric carbohydrate consisting of numerous glucose units joined by glycosidic bonds. This polysaccharide is produced by most green plants for energy storage. Worldwide, it is the most common carbohydrate in human diets, ...
,
cellulose Cellulose is an organic compound In chemistry, organic compounds are generally any chemical compounds that contain carbon-hydrogen or carbon-carbon chemical bond, bonds. Due to carbon's ability to Catenation, catenate (form chains with other ...
,
glycogen Glycogen is a multibranched polysaccharide of glucose that serves as a form of energy storage in animals, fungi, and bacteria. The polysaccharide structure represents the main storage form of glucose in the body. Glycogen functions as one of ...
,
inulin Inulins are a group of naturally occurring polysaccharides produced by many types of plants, industrially most often extracted from chicory Common chicory (''Cichorium intybus'') is a somewhat woody, perennial plant, perennial herbaceous pl ...
and
xylan Xylan (; ) (CAS number: 9014-63-5) is a type of hemicellulose, a polysaccharide consisting mainly of xylose residues. It is found in plants, in the secondary cell walls of dicotyledon, dicots and all cell walls of Poaceae, grasses. Xylan is th ...
molecules. He also contributed towards solving the problems with bacterial polysaccharides. He was a recipient of the
Nobel Prize in Chemistry ) , image = Nobel Prize.png , alt = A golden medallion with an embossed image of a bearded man facing left in profile. To the left of the man is the text "ALFR•" then "NOBEL", and on the right, the text (smaller) "NAT•" then "M ...
in 1937. The
cavity magnetron The cavity magnetron is a high-power vacuum tube used in early radar systems and currently in microwave oven, microwave ovens and linear particle accelerators. It generates microwaves using the interaction of a stream of electrons with a magn ...
was developed in the Department of Physics by Sir John Randall,
Harry Boot Henry Albert Howard Boot (29 July 1917 – 8 February 1983) was an English physicist who with John Randall (physicist), Sir John Randall and James Sayers (physicist), James Sayers developed the cavity magnetron, which was one of the keys to the ...
and James Sayers. This was vital to the Allied victory in World War II. In 1940, the Frisch–Peierls memorandum, a document which demonstrated that the
atomic bomb A nuclear weapon is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reactions, either fission (fission bomb) or a combination of fission and fusion reactions ( thermonuclear bomb), producing a nuclear explosion. Both bom ...
was more than simply theoretically possible, was written in the Physics Department by Sir
Rudolf Peierls Sir Rudolf Ernst Peierls, (; ; 5 June 1907 – 19 September 1995) was a German-born British physicist who played a major role in Tube Alloys, Britain's nuclear weapon programme, as well as the subsequent Manhattan Project, the combined Allied ...
and
Otto Frisch Otto Robert Frisch Fellow of the Royal Society, FRS (1 October 1904 – 22 September 1979) was an Austrian-born British physicist who worked on nuclear physics. With Lise Meitner he advanced the first theoretical explanation of nuclear fission ( ...
. The university also hosted early work on
gaseous diffusion Gaseous diffusion is a technology used to produce enriched uranium by forcing gaseous uranium hexafluoride (UF6) through semipermeable membranes. This produces a slight separation between the molecules containing uranium-235 (235U) and uranium-23 ...
in the Chemistry department when it was located in the Hills building. Physicist Sir
Mark Oliphant Sir Marcus Laurence Elwin Oliphant, (8 October 1901 – 14 July 2000) was an Australian physicist and humanitarian who played an important role in the first experimental demonstration of nuclear fusion and in the History of nuclear weapons, de ...
made a proposal for the construction of a proton-
synchrotron A synchrotron is a particular type of cyclic particle accelerator, descended from the cyclotron, in which the accelerating particle beam travels around a fixed closed-loop path. The magnetic field which bends the particle beam into its closed p ...
in 1943, however he made no assertion that the machine would work. In 1945, phase stability was discovered; consequently, the proposal was revived, and construction of a machine that could surpass proton energies of 1  GeV began at the university. However, because of lack of funds, the machine did not start until 1953. The
Brookhaven National Laboratory Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) is a United States Department of Energy national laboratories, United States Department of Energy national laboratory located in Upton, New York, Upton, Long Island, and was formally established in 1947 at th ...
managed to beat them; they started their
Cosmotron The Cosmotron was a particle accelerator, specifically a proton synchrotron, at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Its construction was approved by the United States Atomic Energy Commission, U.S. Atomic Energy Commission in 1948, reaching its ful ...
in 1952, and had it entirely working in 1953, before the University of Birmingham. In 1947, Sir
Peter Medawar Sir Peter Brian Medawar (; 28 February 1915 – 2 October 1987) was a Brazilian-British biologist and writer, whose works on graft rejection and the discovery of acquired immune tolerance have been fundamental to the medical practice of tissue ...
was appointed Mason Professor of Zoology at the university. His work involved investigating the phenomenon of tolerance and transplantation immunity. He collaborated with Rupert E. Billingham and they did research on problems of pigmentation and
skin grafting Skin grafting, a type of graft (surgery), graft surgery, involves the organ transplant, transplantation of skin. The transplanted biological tissue, tissue is called a skin graft. Surgeons may use skin grafting to treat: * extensive wounding o ...
in cattle. They used skin grafting to differentiate between monozygotic and dizygotic twins in cattle. Taking the earlier research of R. D. Owen into consideration, they concluded that actively acquired tolerance of homografts could be artificially reproduced. For this research, Medawar was elected a
Fellow of the Royal Society Fellowship of the Royal Society (FRS, ForMemRS and HonFRS) is an award granted by the judges of the Royal Society of London to individuals who have made a "substantial contribution to the improvement of natural science, natural knowledge, incl ...
. He left Birmingham in 1951 and joined the faculty at
University College London University College London, which Trade name, operates as UCL, is a Public university, public research university in London, United Kingdom. It is a Member institutions of the University of London, member institution of the Federal university, fe ...
, where he continued his research on transplantation immunity. He was a recipient of the
Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine is awarded yearly by the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institute, Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institutet, Karolinska Institute for outstanding discoveries in physiology or medicine. The Nobel Pr ...
in 1960.


Recent history

In 1999 talks commenced on the possibility of
Aston University Aston University (abbreviated as ''Aston''. for post-nominals) is a public university, public Research university, research university situated in the city centre of Birmingham, England. Aston began as the Birmingham Municipal Technical School ...
integrating itself into the University of Birmingham as the University of Birmingham, Aston Campus. This would have resulted in the University of Birmingham expanding to become one of the largest universities in the UK, with a student body of 30,000. Talks were halted in 2001 after Aston University determined the timing to be inopportune. While Aston University management was in favour of the integration, and reception among staff was generally positive, the Aston student union voted two-to-one against the integration. Despite this set back, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Birmingham said the door remained open to recommence talks when Aston University is ready. The
final round A single-elimination, knockout, or sudden death tournament is a type of elimination tournament where the loser of each match-up is immediately eliminated from the tournament. Each winner will play another in the next round, until the final matc ...
of the first ever televised leaders' debates, hosted by the
BBC #REDIRECT BBC
Here i going to introduce about the best teacher of my life b BALAJI sir. He is the precious gift that I got befor 2yrs . How has helped and thought all the concept and made my success in the 10th board exam. ...
, was held at the university during the 2010 British general election campaign on 29 April 2010. On 9 August 2010 the university announced that for the first time it would not enter the UCAS clearing process for 2010 admission, which matches under-subscribed courses to students who did not meet their firm or insurance choices, due to all places being taken. Largely a result of the
financial crisis of 2007–2010 Finance is the study and discipline of money, currency and capital assets. It is related to, but not synonymous with economics, the study of Production (economics), production, Distribution (economics), distribution, and Consumption (economics) ...
, Birmingham joined fellow Russell Group universities including Oxford, Cambridge, Edinburgh and Bristol in not offering any clearing places. The university acted as a training camp for the Jamaican athletics team prior to the
2012 London Olympics The 2012 Summer Olympics (officially the Games of the XXX Olympiad and also known as London 2012) was an international multi-sport event held from 27 July to 12 August 2012 in London, England, United Kingdom. The first event, the ...
. A new library was opened for the 2016/17 academic year, and a new sports centre opened in May 2017. The previous Main Library and the old Munrow Sports Centre, including the athletics track, have both since been demolished, with the demolition of the old library being completed in November 2017.


Controversies

The discipline of
cultural studies Cultural studies is an interdisciplinary field that examines the political dynamics of contemporary culture (including popular culture) and its historical foundations. Cultural studies researchers generally investigate how cultural practices re ...
was founded at the university and between 1964 and 2002 the campus was home to the
Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies Center or centre may refer to: Mathematics * Center (geometry), the middle of an object * Center (algebra), used in various contexts ** Center (group theory) ** Center (ring theory) * Graph center, the set of all vertices of minimum eccentr ...
, a research centre whose members' work came to be known as the Birmingham School of Cultural Studies. Despite being established by one of the key figures in the field,
Richard Hoggart Herbert Richard Hoggart (24 September 1918 – 10 April 2014) was a British academic whose career covered the fields of sociology, English literature English literature is literature written in the English language from United Kingdom, i ...
, and being later directed by the theorist Stuart Hall, the department was controversially closed down. Analysis showed that the university was fourth in a list of British universities that faced the most
employment tribunal Employment tribunals are tribunal public bodies in England and Wales and Scotland which have statute, statutory jurisdiction to hear many kinds of disputes between employers and employees. The most common disputes are concerned with unfair dismis ...
claims between 2008 and 2011. They were the second most likely to settle these before the hearing date. In 2011 a parliamentary
early day motion In the Westminster parliamentary system, an early day motion (EDM) is a Motion (parliamentary procedure), motion, expressed as a single sentence, Table (parliamentary procedure), tabled by Member of Parliament, members of Parliament that formally ...
was proposed, arguing against the Guild suspending the elected Sabbatical Vice President (Education), who was arrested while taking part in protest activity. In December 2011 it was announced that the university had obtained a 12-month-long injunction against a group of around 25 students, who occupied a residential building on campus from 23 to 26 November 2011, preventing them from engaging in further "occupational protest action" on the university's grounds without prior permission. It was misreported in the press that this injunction applied to all students, however the court order defines the defendants as:
Persons unknown (including students of the University of Birmingham) entering or remaining upon the buildings known as No. 2 Lodge Pritchatts Road, Birmingham at the University of Birmingham for the purpose of protest action (without the consent of the University of Birmingham).
The university and the Guild of Students also clarified the scope of the injunction in an e-mail sent to all students on 11 January 2012, stating: "The injunction applies only to those individuals who occupied the lodge". The university said that it sought this injunction as a safety precaution based on a previous occupation. Three separate human rights groups, including
Amnesty International Amnesty International (also referred to as Amnesty or AI) is an international non-governmental organization focused on human rights, with its headquarters in the United Kingdom. The organization says it has more than ten million members and s ...
, condemned the move as restrictive on human rights. In 2019, several women said the university refused to investigate allegations of campus rape. One student who complained of rape in university accommodation was told by employees of the university that there were no specific procedures for handling rape complaints. In other cases students were told they would have to prove the alleged rapes occurred on university property. The university has been criticized by legal professionals for not adequately assessing the risk to students by refusing to investigate complaints of criminal conduct. In June 2022 the University published a report into, and apologised for, its involvement in developing, promoting and administering electric-shock conversion therapy to gay men, during the period 1966-1983.


Campuses


Edgbaston campus


Original buildings

The main campus of the university occupies a site some south-west of Birmingham city centre, in
Edgbaston Edgbaston () is an affluent suburban area of central Birmingham, England, historically in Warwickshire, and curved around the southwest of the city centre. In the 19th century, the area was under the control of the Gough-Calthorpe family an ...

Edgbaston
. It is arranged around
Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower The Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower, or colloquially Old Joe, is a clock tower and campanile located in Chancellor's court at the University of Birmingham, in the suburb of Edgbaston. It is the tallest free-standing clock tower in the wo ...

Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower
(affectionately known as 'Old Joe' or 'Big Joe'), a grand campanile which commemorates the university's first chancellor,
Joseph Chamberlain Joseph Chamberlain (8 July 1836 – 2 July 1914) was a British statesman who was first a radical Liberal Party (UK), Liberal, then a Liberal Unionist after opposing home rule for Ireland, and eventually served as a leading New Imperialism, i ...
. Chamberlain may be considered the founder of Birmingham University, and was largely responsible for the university gaining its Royal Charter in 1900 and for the development of the Edgbaston campus. The university's Great Hall is located in the domed Aston Webb Building, which is named after one of the architects – the other was Ingress Bell. The initial site was given to the university in 1900 by Lord Calthorpe. The grand buildings were an outcome of the £50,000 given by steel magnate and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie to establish a "first class modern scientific college" on the model of
Cornell University Cornell University is a private statutory land-grant research university based in Ithaca, New York. It is a member of the Ivy League. Founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White, Cornell was founded with the intention to ...

Cornell University
in the United States. Funding was also provided by Sir Holcroft Baronets, Charles Holcroft. The original domed buildings, built in Accrington brick, Accrington red brick, semicircle to form Chancellor's Court. This sits on a drop, so the architects placed their buildings on two tiers with a drop between them. The clock tower stands in the centre of the Court. The campanile itself draws its inspiration from the Torre del Mangia, a medieval clock tower that forms part of the Palazzo Pubblico, Town Hall in Siena, Italy. When it was built, it was described as 'the intellectual beacon of the Midlands' by the ''Birmingham Post''. The clock tower was Birmingham's tallest building from the date of its construction in 1908 until 1969; it is now the third highest in the city. It is one of the top 50 tallest buildings in the UK, and the tallest free-standing clock tower in the world, although there is some confusion about its actual height, with the university listing it both as and tall in different sources. The campus has a wide diversity in architectural types and architects. "What makes Birmingham so exceptional among the Red Brick universities is the deployment of so many other major Modernist practices: only Oxford and Cambridge boast greater selections". The Guild of Students original section was designed by Birmingham inter-war architect Holland W. Hobbiss, Holland Hobbiss who also designed the King Edward's School, Birmingham, King Edward's School opposite. It was described as "Redbrick Tudorish" by Nikolaus Pevsner. The statue on horseback fronting the entrance to the university and Barber Institute of Fine Arts is a 1722 statue of George I of Great Britain, George I rescued from Dublin in 1937. This was saved by Bodkin, a director of the National Gallery of Ireland and first director of the Barber Institute. The statue was commissioned by the Dublin Corporation from the Flemish sculptor John van Nost. Final negotiations for part of what is now the Vale were only completed in March 1947. By then, properties which would have their names used for halls of residences such as Wyddrington and Maple Bank were under discussion and more land was obtained from the Calthorpe estate in 1948 and 1949 providing the setting for the Vale. Landscape architect Mary Mitchell (landscape architect), Mary Mitchell designed the layout of the campus and she included mature trees that were retained from the former gardens. Construction on the Vale started in 1962 with the creation of a artificial lake and the building of Ridge, High, Wyddrington and Lake Halls. The first, Ridge Hall, opened for 139 women in January 1964, with its counterpart High Hall admitting its first male residents the following October.


1960s and modern expansion

The university underwent a major expansion in the 1960s due to the production of a masterplan by Casson, Conder and Partners. The first of the major buildings to be constructed to a design by the firm was the Refectory and Staff House which was built in 1961 and 1962. The two buildings are connected by a bridge. The next major buildings to be constructed were the Wyddrington and Lake Halls and the Faculty of Commerce and Social Science, all completed in 1965. The Wyddrington and Lake Halls, on Edgbaston Park Road, were designed by H. T. Cadbury-Brown and contained three floors of student dwellings above a single floor of communal facilities. The Faculty of Commerce and Social Science, now known as the Ashley Building, was designed by Howell, Killick, Partridge and Amis and is a long, curving two-storey block linked to a five-storey Spiral, whorl. The two-storey block follows the curve of the road, and has load-bearing brick cross walls. It is faced in specially-made concrete blocks. The spiral is faced with faceted pre-cast concrete cladding panels. It was listed building, statutorily listed in 1993 and a refurbishment by Berman Guedes Stretton was completed in 2006. Chamberlain, Powell and Bon were commissioned to design the Physical Education Centre which was built in 1966. The main characteristic of the building is the roof of the changing rooms and small gymnasium which has hyperbolic paraboloid roof light shells and is completely paved in quarry tiles. The roof of the sports hall consists of eight conoidal 2½-inch thick sprayed concrete shells springing from long pre-stressed valley beams. On the south elevation, the roof is supported on raking pre-cast columns and reversed shells form a cantilevered canopy. Also completed in 1966 was the Mining and Minerals Engineering and Physical Metallurgy Departments, which was designed by Philip Dowson of Arup Group Limited, Arup Associates. This complex consisted of four similar three-storey blocks linked at the corners. The frame is of pre-cast reinforced concrete with columns in groups of four and the whole is planned as a tartan grid, allowing services to be carried vertically and horizontally so that at no point in a room are services more than ten feet away. The building received the 1966 Royal Institute of British Architects, RIBA Architecture Award for the West Midlands. It was listed building, statutorily listed in 1993. Taking the full five years from 1962 to 1967, Birmingham erected twelve buildings which each cost in excess of a quarter of a million pounds. In 1967, Lucas House, a new hall of residence designed by John Madin, The John Madin Design Group, was completed, providing 150 study bedrooms. It was constructed in the garden of a large house. The Medical School was extended in 1967 to a design by Leonard J. Multon and Partners. The two-storey building was part of a complex which covers the southside of Metchley Fort, a Roman fort. In 1968, the Institute for Education in the Department for Education was opened. This was another Casson, Conder and Partners-designed building. The complex consisted of a group of buildings centred around an eight-storey block, containing study offices, laboratories and teaching rooms. The building has a reinforced concrete frame which is exposed internally and the external walls are of silver-grey rustic bricks. The roofs of the lecture halls, penthouse and Child Study wing are covered in copper. Arup Associates returned in the 1960s to design the Arts and Commerce Building, better known as Muirhead Tower and houses the Institute of Local Government Studies. This was completed in 1969. A£42 million refurbishment of the 16-storey tower was completed in 2009 and it now houses the Colleges of Social Sciences and the Cadbury Research Library, the new home for the university's Special Collections. The podium was remodeled around the existing Allardyce Nicol studio theatre, providing additional rehearsal spaces and changing and technical facilities. The ground floor lobby now incorporates a Starbucks coffee shop. The name, Muirhead Tower, came from that of the first philosophy professor of the university John Henry Muirhead. Recently completed is a 450-seat concert hall, called the Bramall Music Building, which completes the redbrick semicircle of the Aston Webb building designed by Glenn Howells Architects with venue design by Acoustic Dimensions. This auditorium, with its associated research, teaching and rehearsal facilities, houses the Department of Music. In August 2011 the university announced that architects Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands and Standard & Poor's, S&P were appointed to develop a new Indoor Sports Centre as part of a £175 million investment in the campus.


Other features

In 1978, University (Birmingham) railway station, University station, on the Cross-City Line, was opened to serve the university and its hospital. It is the only university campus in mainland Britain with its own railway station. a new station is being constructed, adjacent to the existing facility. Nearby, the Steampipe Bridge, which was constructed in 2011, transports steam across the Cross-City Railway Line and Worcester and Birmingham Canal, Worcester & Birmingham Canal from the energy generation plant to the medical school as part of the university's sustainable energy strategy. Its laser-cut exterior is also a public art feature. Located within the Edgbaston site of the university is the Winterbourne Botanic Garden, a 24,000 square metre (258,000 square foot) Edwardian period, Edwardian Arts and Crafts style garden. The large statue in the foreground was a gift to the university by its sculptor Sir Edward Paolozzi – the sculpture is named 'Faraday', and has an excerpt from the poem 'The Dry Salvages' by T. S. Eliot around its base. The University of Birmingham operates the
Lapworth Museum of Geology The Lapworth Museum of Geology is a geology, geological museum run by the University of Birmingham and located on the university's campus in Edgbaston, south Birmingham, England. The museum is named after the geologist Charles Lapworth, its orig ...
in the Aston Webb Building in
Edgbaston Edgbaston () is an affluent suburban area of central Birmingham, England, historically in Warwickshire, and curved around the southwest of the city centre. In the 19th century, the area was under the control of the Gough-Calthorpe family an ...

Edgbaston
. It is named after Charles Lapworth, a geologist who worked at Mason Science College. Since November 2007, the university has been holding a farmers' market on the campus. Birmingham is the first university in the country to have an accredited farmers' market. The considerable extent of the estate meant that by the end of the 1990s it was valued at £536 million.Ives, E. (2000). The First Civic University: Birmingham, 1880–1980 – An Introductory History. Birmingham: University of Birmingham Press. University of Birmingham marked its grand ending of Green Heart Project at the start of 2019.


Selly Oak campus

The university's Selly Oak campus is a short distance to the south of the main campus. It was the home of a federation of nine colleges, known as Selly Oak Colleges, mainly focused on theology, social work, and teacher training. The Federation was for many years associated with the University of Birmingham. A new library, the Orchard Learning Resource Centre, was opened in 2001, shortly before the Federation ceased to exist. The OLRC is now one of Birmingham University's site libraries. Among the Selly Oak Colleges was Westhill College, (later the University of Birmingham, Westhill), which merged with the university's School of Education in 2001. In the following years most of the remaining colleges closed, leaving two colleges which continue today, Woodbrooke College, a study and conference centre for the Society of Friends, and Fircroft College, a small adult education college with residential provision. Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre, Woodbrooke College's Centre for Postgraduate Quaker Studies, established in 1998, works with the University of Birmingham to deliver research supervision for the degrees of MA by research and PhD. The Selly Oak campus is now home to the Department of Drama and Theatre Arts in the newly refurbished Selly Oak Colleges Old Library and George Cadbury Hall 200-seat theatre. The UK daytime television show ''Doctors (2000 TV series), Doctors'' is filmed on this campus. The University of Birmingham School occupies a brand new, purpose-built building located on the university's Selly Oak campus. The University of Birmingham School is sponsored by the University of Birmingham and managed by an Academy Trust. The University of Birmingham School opened in September 2015.


Mason College and Queen's College campus

The Victorian neo-gothic Mason College Building in Birmingham city centre housed Birmingham University's Faculties of Arts and Law for over 50 years after the founding of the university in 1900. The Faculty of Arts building on the Edgbaston campus was not constructed until 1959–61. The Faculties of Arts and Law then moved to the Edgbaston campus. The original Mason College Building was demolished in 1962 as part of the redevelopment within the inner ring road. The 1843 Gothic Revival building constructed opposite the Town Hall between Paradise Street (the main entrance) and Swallow Street served as Queen's College, one of the founder colleges of the university. In 1904 the building was given a new buff-coloured terracotta and brick front. The medical and scientific departments merged with Mason College in 1900 to form the University of Birmingham and sought new premises in Edgbaston. The theological department of Queen's College did not merge with Mason College, but later moved in 1923 to Somerset Road in Edgbaston, next to the University of Birmingham as the The Queen's Foundation, Queen's Foundation, maintaining a relationship with the University of Birmingham until a 2010 review. In the mid 1970s, the original Queen's College building was demolished, with the exception of the grade II listed façade.


Organisation and administration


Academic departments

Birmingham has departments covering a wide range of subjects. On 1 August 2008, the university's system was restructured into five 'colleges', which are composed of numerous 'schools': *Arts and Law (English, Drama and Creative Studies; History and Cultures; Languages, Cultures, Art History and Music; Birmingham Law School; Philosophy, Theology and Religion) *Engineering and Physical Sciences (Chemistry; Chemical Engineering; Computer Science; Engineering (comprising the Departments of civil, Mechanical and Electrical, Electronic & Systems Engineering); Mathematics; Metallurgy and Materials; Physics and Astronomy) *Life and Environmental Sciences (Biosciences; Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences; Psychology; Sport and Exercise Sciences) *Medical and Dental Sciences (Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences; Institute of Clinical Sciences; Institute of Inflammation and Ageing; Institute of Applied Health Research; Institute of Cardiovascular Science; Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy; Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research; Institute of Microbiology and Infection). *Social Sciences (Birmingham Business School (University of Birmingham), Birmingham Business School; Education; Government and Society; Social Policy) *Liberal Arts and Sciences The university is home to a number of research centres and schools, including the Birmingham Business School, the oldest business school in England, the University of Birmingham Medical School, the International Development Department, the Inlogov, Institute of Local Government Studies, the Centre of West African Studies, the Centre for Russian and East European Studies, the Centre of Excellence for Research in Computational Intelligence and Applications and the Shakespeare Institute. An Institute for Research into Superdiversity was established in 2013. Apart from traditional research and PhDs, under the department of Engineering and Physical Sciences, the university offers split-site PhD in Computer Science. The university is also home to the Birmingham Solar Oscillations Network (BiSON) which consists of a network of six remote solar observatories monitoring low-degree solar oscillation modes. It is operated by the High Resolution Optical Spectroscopy group of the School of Physics and Astronomy, funded by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).


International Development Department

The International Development Department (IDD) is a multi-disciplinary academic department focused on poverty reduction through developing effective governance systems. The department is one of the leading UK centres for the postgraduate study of international development. The department has been described as being a "highly regarded, long-established specialist unit" with a "global reputation" by ''The Independent''.


Off-campus establishments

A number of the university's centres, schools and institutes are located away from its two campuses in Edgbaston and Selly Oak: * The Shakespeare Institute, in Stratford-upon-Avon, which is a centre for postgraduate study dedicated to the study of William Shakespeare and the literature of the English Renaissance. * The Ironbridge Institute, in Ironbridge, which offers postgraduate and professional development courses in Cultural heritage, heritage. * The School of Dentistry (the UK's oldest dental school), in Birmingham City Centre. * The Raymond Priestley Centre, near Coniston, Cumbria, Coniston in the Lake District, which is used for outdoor pursuits and field work. There is also a Masonic Lodge that has been associated with the university since 1938.


University of Birmingham Observatory

In the early 1980s, the University of Birmingham constructed an observatory next to the university playing fields, approximately south of the Edgbaston campus. The site was chosen because the night sky was ~100 times darker than the skies above campus. First light was on 8 December 1982, and the Observatory was officially opened by the Astronomer Royal, Francis Graham-Smith, on 13 June 1984. The observatory was upgraded in 2013. The Observatory is used primarily for undergraduate teaching. It has two main instruments, a 16" Cassegrain reflector, Cassegrain (working at f/19) and a 14" Meade Instruments, Meade LX200R (working at f/6.35). A third telescope is also present and is used exclusively for visual observations. Members of the public are given chance to visit the Observatory at regular ''Astronomy in the City'' events during the winter months. These events include a talk on the night sky from a member of the university's student Birmingham University Astronomical Society, Astronomical Society; a talk on current astrophysics research, such as exoplanets, galaxy clusters or gravitational-wave astronomy, a question-and-answer session, and the chance to observing using telescopes both on campus and at the Observatory.


Branding

The original coat of arms was designed in 1900. It features a double headed lion (on the left) and a mermaid holding a mirror and comb (to the right). These symbols owe to the coat of arms of the institution's predecessor, Mason College. In 2005 the university began rebranding itself. A simplified edition of the shield which had been introduced in the 1980s reverted to a detailed version based on how it appears on the university's original Royal Charter.


Academic profile


Libraries and collections

Library Services operates six libraries. They are the Barber Fine Art Library, Barnes Library, Main Library, Orchard Learning Resource Centre, Dental Library, and the Shakespeare Institute Library. Library Services also operates the Cadbury Research Library. The Shakespeare Institute's library is a major United Kingdom resource for the study of English Renaissance literature. The Cadbury Research Library is home to the University of Birmingham's historic collections of rare books, manuscripts, archives, photographs and associated artefacts. The collections, which have been built up over a period of 120 years consist of over 200,000 rare printed books including significant incunabula, as well as over 4 million unique archive and manuscript collections. The Cadbury Research Library is responsible for directly supporting the university's research, learning and teaching agenda, along with supporting the national and international research community. The Cadbury Research Library contains the Chamberlain collection of papers from
Neville Chamberlain Arthur Neville Chamberlain (; 18 March 18699 November 1940) was a British politician of the Conservative Party (UK), Conservative Party who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1937 to May 1940. He is best known for his for ...

Neville Chamberlain
,
Joseph Chamberlain Joseph Chamberlain (8 July 1836 – 2 July 1914) was a British statesman who was first a radical Liberal Party (UK), Liberal, then a Liberal Unionist after opposing home rule for Ireland, and eventually served as a leading New Imperialism, i ...
and Austen Chamberlain, the Avon Papers belonging to Anthony Eden with material on the Suez Crisis, the Cadbury Papers relating to the Cadbury Schweppes, Cadbury firm from 1900 to 1960, the Mingana Collection of Middle Eastern Manuscripts of Alphonse Mingana, the Noël Coward Collection, the papers of
Edward Elgar Sir Edward William Elgar, 1st Baronet, (; 2 June 1857 – 23 February 1934) was an English composer, many of whose works have entered the British and international classical concert repertoire. Among his best-known compositions are orchestr ...
, Oswald Mosley, and David Lodge (author), David Lodge, and the records of the English YMCA and of the Church Missionary Society. The Cadbury Research Library has recently taken in the complete archive of UK Save the Children. The Library holds important first editions such as De Humani Corporis (1543) by Versalius, the Complete Works (1616) of Ben Jonson, two copies of The Temple of Flora (1799-1807) by Robert Thornton and comprehensive collections of the works of Joseph Priestley and D H Lawrence as well as many other significant works. In 2015, Birmingham Quran manuscript, a Quranic manuscript in the Mingana Collection was identified as one of the oldest to have survived, having been written between 568 and 645. At the beginning of the 2016/17 academic year, a new main library opened on the Edgbaston campus and the old library has now been demolished as part of the plans to create a 'Green Heart' as per the original plans for the university whereby the clock tower would be visible from the North Gate. The Harding Law Library was closed and renovated to become the university's Translation and Interpreting Suite.


Medicine

The University of Birmingham's medical school is one of the largest in Europe with well over 450 medical students being trained in each of the clinical years and over 1,000 teaching, research, technical and administrative staff . The school has centres of excellence in cancer, pharmacy, immunology, cardiovascular disease, neuroscience and endocrinology and renowned nationally and internationally for its research and developments in these fields. The medical school has close links with the National Health Service (England), NHS and works closely with 15 teaching hospitals and 50 primary care training practices in the West Midlands (county), West Midlands. The University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust is the main teaching hospital in the West Midlands. It has been given three stars for the past four consecutive years. The trust also hosts the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, based at Selly Oak Hospital, which provides medical support to military personnel such as military returned from fighting in the Iraq War.


Rankings and reputation

The 2022 ''U.S. News & World Report'' ranks Birmingham 91st in the world. In 2019, it is ranked 137th among the universities around the world by ''SCImago Institutions Rankings''. In 2021 the Times Higher Education placed Birmingham 12th in the UK. In 2013, Birmingham was named 'University of the Year 2014' in the ''Times Higher Education'' awards. The 2013 QS World University Rankings placed Birmingham University at 10th in the UK and 62nd internationally. Birmingham was ranked 12th in the UK in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise with 16 percent of the university's research regarded as world-leading and 41 percent as internationally excellent, with particular strengths in the fields of music, physics, biosciences, computer science, mechanical engineering, political science, international relations and law. Course satisfaction was at 85% in 2011 which grew to 88% in 2012. In 2015 the Complete University Guide placed Birmingham 5th in the UK for graduate prospects. Data from the ''Higher Education Funding Council for England'' (HEFCE) placed the university amongst the twelve elite institutions who among them take more than half of the students with the highest A-level grades. Birmingham traditionally had a focus on science, engineering, commerce and coal mining, but has now expanded its provision. It hosted the first Cancer Research UK Centre, and making notable contributions to gravitational-wave astronomy, hosting the Institute of Gravitational Wave Astronomy. The School of Computer Science ranked 1st in the 2014 Guardian University Guide, 4th in the 2013 Sunday Times League Table and 6th in the 2014 Sunday Times League Table. The Department of Philosophy ranked 3rd in the 2017 Guardian University League Tables, below the University of Oxford and above the University of Cambridge, with the first being the University of St Andrews. The combined course of Computer Science and Information Systems, titled Computer Systems Engineering was ranked 4th in the 2016 Guardian University guide. The Department of Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS) ranked 4th in the UK and 22nd in the world in the Hix rankings of political science departments. The sociology department also ranked 4th by The Guardian University guide. The Research Fortnight's University Power Ranking, based on quality and quantity of research activity, put the University of Birmingham 12th in the UK, leading the way across a broad range of disciplines including Primary Care, Cancer Studies, Psychology and Sport and Exercise Sciences. The School of Physics and Astronomy also performed well in the rankings, being ranked 3rd in the 2012 Guardian University Guide and 7th in The Complete University Guide 2012. The School of Chemical Engineering is ranked second in the UK by the 2014 Guardian University Guide.


Admissions

In terms of average UCAS points of entrants, Birmingham ranked 25th in Britain in 2014. According to the 2017 ''Times'' and ''Sunday Times'' Good University Guide, approximately 20% of Birmingham's undergraduates come from independent schools. The university gives offers of admission to 79.2% of its applicants, the 8th highest amongst the
Russell Group The Russell Group is a self-selected association of twenty-four public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This ...
. In the 2016–17 academic year, the university had a domicile breakdown of 76:5:18 of UK:EU:non-EU students respectively with a female to male ratio of 56:44.


Birmingham Heroes

To highlight leading areas of research, the university has launched the Birmingham Heroes scheme. Academics who lead research that impacts on the lives of people regionally, nationally and globally can be nominated for selection. Heroes include: * Alberto Vecchio and Andreas Freise for their work as part of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration towards the first observation of gravitational waves * Martin Freer, Toby Peters and Yulong Ding for their work on energy efficient cooling * Philip Newsome, Thomas Solomon and Patricia Lalor for tackling the silent killers, liver disease and diabetes * James Arthur, Kristján Kristjánsson, Sandra Cooke and Tom Harrison for promoting character in education * Lisa Bortolotti, Ema Sullivan-Bissett and Michael Larkin for their work on how to break down the social stigma, stigma associated with mental illness * Kate Thomas, Joe Alderman, Rima Dhillon and Shayan Ahmed for their research in and teaching of List of life sciences, life sciences * Pam Kearns, Charlie Craddock and Paul Moss for cancer research * Anna Phillips, Glyn Humphreys and Janet Lord who research healthy ageing * Pierre Purseigle, Peter Gray and Bob Stone for using their historical knowledge to advise government organisations * Paul Bowen and Nick Green for research into new Materials science, materials to improve Electric generator, energy generation * Lynne Macaskie, William Bloss and Jamie Lead for their study of pollutants, particularly Nanotechnology, nanoscale pollutants * Paul Jackson, Scott Lucas and Stefan Wolff for their work helping with post-conflict and advice on the application of aid *Hongming Xu, Clive Roberts and Roger Reed for work on sustainable transport * Moataz Attallah, Kiran Trehan and Tim Daffron for driving economic growth through improving aerospace engineering, developing enterprise and pioneering industrial applications of synthetic biology


Birmingham Fellows

The Birmingham Fellowship scheme was launched in 2011. The scheme encourages high potential early career researchers to establish themselves as rounded academics and continue pursuing their research interests. This scheme was the first of its kind, and has since been emulated in several other
Russell Group The Russell Group is a self-selected association of twenty-four public In public relations and communication science, publics are groups of individual people, and the public (a.k.a. the general public) is the totality of such groupings. This ...
universities across the UK. Since 2014, the scheme has been divided int
Birmingham Research Fellowships
an
Birmingham Teaching Fellowships
Birmingham Fellows are appointed to permanent academic posts (with two or three year probation periods), with five years protected time to develop their research. Birmingham Fellows are usually recruited at a lecturer or senior lecturer level. In the first period of the fellowship, emphasis is placed on the research aspect, publishing high quality academic outputs, developing a trajectory for their work and gaining external funding. However, development of teaching skills is encouraged. Teaching and supervisory responsibilities, as well as administrative duties, then steadily increase to a normal lecturer's load in the Fellow's respective discipline by the fifth year of the fellowship. Birmingham Fellows are not expected to carry out academic administration during their term as Fellows, but will do once their posts turn into lectureships ('three-legged contract'). When accepted into the Birmingham Research Fellowship, Fellows receive a start-up package to develop or continue their research projects, an academic mentor and support for both research and teaching. All fellows are said to become part of the Birmingham Fellows Cohort, which provides them a university-wide network and an additional source of support and mentoring.


International cooperation

In Germany the University of Birmingham cooperates with the Goethe University Frankfurt, Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main. Both cities are linked by a long-lasting partnership agreement.


Student life


Guild of Students

The University of Birmingham Guild of Students is the university's students' union, student union. Originally the Guild of Undergraduates, the institution had its first foundations in the Mason Science College in the centre of Birmingham around 1876. The University of Birmingham itself formally received its Royal Charter in 1900 with the Guild of Students being provided for as a Student Representative Council. It is not known for certain why the name 'Guild of Students' was chosen as opposed to 'Union of Students', however, the Guild shares its name with Liverpool Guild of Students, another 'redbrick university'; both organisations subsequently founded the National Union of Students (United Kingdom), National Union of Students. The Union Building, the Guild's bricks and mortar presence, was designed by the architect Holland W. Hobbiss. The Guild's official purposes are to represent its members and provide a means of socialising, though societies and general amenities. The university provides the Guild with the Union Building effectively rent free as well as a block grant to support student services. The Guild also runs several bars, eateries, social spaces and social events. The Guild supports a variety of student societies and volunteering projects, roughly around 220 at any one time. The Guild complements these societies and volunteering projects with professional staffed services, including its walk-in Advice and Representation Centre (ARC), Student Activities, Jobs/Skills/Volunteering, Student Mentors in halls, and Community Wardens around
Bournbrook Bournbrook is an industrial and residential district in southwest Birmingham, England, in both the Selly Oak Council Ward and the Parliamentary District of Selly Oak. Prior to what is commonly termed the Greater Birmingham Act, which came in ...
. The Guild of Students was where the international volunteering charity InterVol was conceived and developed as a student-led volunteering project; the group currently supports charitable organisations in four developing countries. Another two of the Guild's long-standing societies are Student Advice and Nightline (previously Niteline), which both provide peer-to-peer welfare support. The Guild was one of the first universities in the United Kingdom to publish a campus newspaper, ''Redbrick (Newspaper), Redbrick'', supported financially by the Guild of Students and advertising revenue. The Guild undertakes its representative function through its officer group, seven of whom are full-time, on sabbatical from their studies, and ten of whom are part-time and hold their positions whilst still studying. Elections are held yearly, conventionally February, for the following academic year. These officers have regular contact with the university's officer-holders and managers. In theory, the Guild's officers are directed and kept to account over their year in office by Guild Council, an 80-seat decision-making body. The Guild also supports the university "student reps" scheme, which aims to provide an effective channel of feedback from students on more of a departmental level.


Sport

The University of Birmingham opened the new Sport and Fitness Centre in May 2017 providing brand new facilities including gym, squash courts, 50m swimming pool, and climbing wall. The University has two international standard hockey pitches, completed in 2017, flexible 3G pitches which can be used for 5-a-side and 11-a-side football, as well as netball and tennis courts, and a 400m athletics track at Edgbaston Park Road. As of the 2019 league, the university is ranked seventh in the British Universities and Colleges Sport league table. University of Birmingham Sport provides a range of competitive and participation sports, for both the student and local community. Services include 180 fitness classes a week, 56 different sport clubs, including rowing, basketball, cricket, football, rugby union, netball, field hockey, American football, and triathlon. The wide selection has ensured the university has over 4,000 students participating in sport each year. The university also opened the Raymond Priestley Centre in 1981 on the shores of Coniston Water in the Lake District, offering students, staff and community alike to explore outdoor activities and learning in the area. Sir Raymond Priestley, vice-chancellor of the university in 1938, and his Director of Sport A.D. Munrow, helped establish the first undergraduate courses in Physical Education in 1946, developed their sports facilities – starting with the gymnasium in 1939, and made participation in recreational sport compulsory for all new undergraduates from 1940 to 1968. Birmingham became the first UK university to offer a sports degree. Many University of Birmingham students and alumni have competed at Olympics, Paralympics and Commonwealth Games. In 2004, six graduates and one student competed in the 2004 Athens Summer Olympics, and four alumni competed at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, including cyclist Paul Manning (cyclist), Paul Manning who won an Olympic Gold. In 2012, Pamela Relph MBE was part of the rowing mixed coxed four that won Paralympic gold, and she successfully defended her title in Rio: the only current international para-rower to be a double Paralympic Champion. In the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, six students and eighteen alumni attended representing England, Scotland, Wales, and Guernsey, and competing in sports including hockey, 1500m, badminton, and cycling. The university hosted the Jamaican track and field team prior to the
2012 London Olympics The 2012 Summer Olympics (officially the Games of the XXX Olympiad and also known as London 2012) was an international multi-sport event held from 27 July to 12 August 2012 in London, England, United Kingdom. The first event, the ...
. The team, including the world's fastest man, Usain Bolt – who became the first man in history to defend his 100 metres and 200 metres titles at the Olympics – won team gold for the along with Nesta Carter, Yohan Blake and Michael Frater. Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce won gold in the women's 100 metres. The team returned to the university in 2017 to prepare for London's Indoor Championships, staying in the Chamberlain Hall on the Vale Village, and using the newly established Sport & Fitness facilities and athletics track. University of Birmingham Sport has since been host to a number of international teams; the Australian and South Africa teams ahead of the men's Rugby World Cup in 2015, the Jamaican, England and New Zealand netball teams before the Vitality Nations Cup in January 2020, and 19 nations for the individual competition at the World University Squash Championships in 2018. Birmingham was selected as the host for the 2022 Commonwealth Games and the University was chosen as the venue for hockey and squash, due to the ability of existing facilities to host the games with only temporary structures needing to be constructed for seating, lighting, and broadcasting. The University was the largest athletes village during the games, hosting 3,500 athletes in Tennis Courts and the Vale, and the University was the official training venue for both swimming and athletics. University of Birmingham Sport also offers around 30 scholarships and bursaries to national and international students of exceptional athletic ability.


Housing

The university provides housing for most first-year students, running a guarantee scheme for all those UK applicants who choose Birmingham as their firm UCAS choice. 90 per cent of university-provided housing is inhabited by first-year students. The university maintained gender-segregated halls until 1999 when Lake and Wyddrington "halls" (treated as two different halls, despite being physically one building) were renamed as Shackleton Hall. Chamberlain Hall (Eden Tower), a seventeen-storey tower block, was originally known as High Hall, for male students, and the connected Ridge Hall (later renamed to the Hampton Wing), for female students. University House was decommissioned as accommodation to house the expanding Business School, while Mason Hall has been demolished and rebuilt, opening in 2008. In the summer of 2006, the university sold three of its most distant halls (Hunter Court, the Beeches and Queens Hospital Close) to private operators, while later in the year and during term, the university was forced urgently to decommission both the old Chamberlain Tower (High Hall) and also Manor House over fire safety inspection failures. The university has rebranded its halls offerings into three villages.


Vale Village

The Vale Village includes Chamberlain Hall, Shackleton, Maple Bank, Tennis Court, Elgar Court and Aitken residences. A sixth hall of residence, Mason Hall, re-opened in September 2008 following a complete rebuild. Approximately 2,700 students live in the village. Shackleton Hall (originally Lake Hall, for male students, and Wyddrington Hall, for female students) underwent an £11 million refurbishment and was re-opened in Autumn 2004. There are 72 flats housing a total of 350 students. The majority of the units consist of six to eight bedrooms, together with a small number of one, two, three or five bedroom studio/apartments. The redevelopment was designed by Birmingham-based architect Patrick Nicholls while employed at Aedas, now a director of Glancy Nicholls Architects. Maple Bank was refurbished and opened in summer 2005. It consists of 87 five bedroom flats, housing 435 undergraduates. The Elgar Court residence consists of 40 six bedroom flats, housing a total of 236 students. It opened in September 2003. Tennis Court consists of 138 three, four, five and six bedroom flats and houses 697 students. The Aitken wing is a small complex consisting of 23 six and eight bedroom flats. It houses 147 students. Construction of the new Mason Hall commenced in June 2006 following complete demolition of the original 1960s structures. It was designed by Aedas Architects. The entire project is thought to have cost £36.75 million. It has since been completed, with the first year of students moving in September 2008. The new Chamberlain Tower and neighbouring low rise blocks opened in September 2015. Chamberlain is home to more than 700 first year students. It replaced the old 1964-built 18-storey (above ground level) High Hall (later renamed Eden Tower), for male students and low rise Ridge Hall (later renamed Hampton Wing) for female students, which closed in 2006. The 50-year-old Eden Tower was removed at the start of 2014. Previously known as High Hall, the tower and its associated low rise blocks were demolished after studies revealed it would be uneconomical to refurbish them and would not provide the quality of accommodation which the University of Birmingham desires for students. The largest student-run event, the Vale Festival or 'ValeFest', is held annually on the Vale. The Festival celebrated its 10th event in 2014, raising £25,000 for charity. The 2019 event was headlined by The Hunna and Saint Raymond.


Pritchatts Park Village

The Pritchatts Park Village houses over 700 undergraduate and postgraduate students. Halls include 'Ashcroft', 'The Spinney' and 'Oakley Court', as well as 'Pritchatts House' and the 'Pritchatts Road Houses'. The Spinney is a small complex of six houses and twelve smaller flats, housing 104 students in total. Ashcroft consists of four purpose built blocks of flats and houses 198 students. The four-storey Pritchatts House consists of 24 duplex units and houses 159 students. Oakley Court consists of 21 individual purpose-built flats, ranging in size from five to thirteen bedrooms. Also included are 36 duplex units. A total of 213 students are housed in Oakley Court, made up of undergraduates. Oakley Court was completed in 1993 at a cost of £2.9 million. It was designed by Birmingham-based Associated Architects. Pritchatts Road is a group of four private houses that were converted into student residences. There is a maximum of 16 bedrooms per house.


Selly Oak Village

Selly Oak Village consists of three residences in the Selly Oak and
Bournbrook Bournbrook is an industrial and residential district in southwest Birmingham, England, in both the Selly Oak Council Ward and the Parliamentary District of Selly Oak. Prior to what is commonly termed the Greater Birmingham Act, which came in ...
areas: Jarratt Hall, which is owned by the university, Douper Hall, and The Metalworks. As of 2008, the village had 637 bed spaces for students. Jarratt Hall is a large complex designed around a central courtyard and three landscaped areas. It housed 587 undergraduate students as of 2012. Jarratt Hall did not accommodate postgraduate students until September 2013, due to ongoing refurbishment of kitchens and the heating system.


Student Housing Co-operative accommodation

Birmingham Student Housing Co-operative was opened in 2014 by students of the university to provide affordable self managed housing for its members. The co-operative manages a property on Pershore Road in Selly Oak.


Notable people


Academics

The faculty and staff members connected with the university include Nobel laureates Sir
Norman Haworth Sir Walter Norman Haworth Fellow of the Royal Society, FRS (19 March 1883 – 19 March 1950) was a British chemist best known for his groundbreaking work on ascorbic acid (vitamin C) while working at the University of Birmingham. He received th ...
(Professor of Chemistry, 1925–1948), Sir
Peter Medawar Sir Peter Brian Medawar (; 28 February 1915 – 2 October 1987) was a Brazilian-British biologist and writer, whose works on graft rejection and the discovery of acquired immune tolerance have been fundamental to the medical practice of tissue ...
(Mason Professor of Zoology, 1947–1951), John Robert Schrieffer (NSF Fellow at Birmingham, 1957), David Thouless, Michael Kosterlitz, and Sir Fraser Stoddart. Physicists include John Henry Poynting, Freeman Dyson, Sir
Otto Frisch Otto Robert Frisch Fellow of the Royal Society, FRS (1 October 1904 – 22 September 1979) was an Austrian-born British physicist who worked on nuclear physics. With Lise Meitner he advanced the first theoretical explanation of nuclear fission ( ...
, Sir
Rudolf Peierls Sir Rudolf Ernst Peierls, (; ; 5 June 1907 – 19 September 1995) was a German-born British physicist who played a major role in Tube Alloys, Britain's nuclear weapon programme, as well as the subsequent Manhattan Project, the combined Allied ...
, Sir Marcus Oliphant, Sir Leonard Huxley (physicist), Leonard Huxley,
Harry Boot Henry Albert Howard Boot (29 July 1917 – 8 February 1983) was an English physicist who with John Randall (physicist), Sir John Randall and James Sayers (physicist), James Sayers developed the cavity magnetron, which was one of the keys to the ...
, Sir John Randall, and Edwin Ernest Salpeter. Chemists include Sir William A. Tilden. Mathematicians include Jonathan Bennett (mathematician), Jonathan Bennett, Henry Daniels, Daniela Kühn, Deryk Osthus, Daniel Pedoe and G. N. Watson. In music, faculty members include the composers Sir
Edward Elgar Sir Edward William Elgar, 1st Baronet, (; 2 June 1857 – 23 February 1934) was an English composer, many of whose works have entered the British and international classical concert repertoire. Among his best-known compositions are orchestr ...
and Sir
Granville Bantock Sir Granville Ransome Bantock (7 August 186816 October 1946) was a British composer of classical music. Biography Granville Ransome Bantock was born in London London is the capital and List of urban areas in the United Kingdom, largest ...
. Geologists include Charles Lapworth, Frederick William Shotton, Frederick Shotton, and Sir Alwyn Williams (geologist), Alwyn Williams. In medicine, faculty members include Sir Melville Arnott and Sir Bertram Windle. Biologists include William Hillhouse and George Stephen West, both Mason Professors of Botany. Author and literary critic David Lodge (author), David Lodge taught English from 1960 until 1987. Poet and playwright Louis MacNeice was a lecturer in classics 1930–1936. English novelist, critic, and man of letters Anthony Burgess taught in the extramural department (1946–50).
Richard Hoggart Herbert Richard Hoggart (24 September 1918 – 10 April 2014) was a British academic whose career covered the fields of sociology, English literature English literature is literature written in the English language from United Kingdom, i ...
founded the
Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies Center or centre may refer to: Mathematics * Center (geometry), the middle of an object * Center (algebra), used in various contexts ** Center (group theory) ** Center (ring theory) * Graph center, the set of all vertices of minimum eccentr ...
. Sir Alan Walters was Professor of Econometrics and Statistics (1951–68) and later became Chief Economic Adviser to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Solly Zuckerman, Baron Zuckerman, Lord Zuckerman was Professor of Anatomy 1946–1968 and also served as chief scientific adviser to the British government from 1964 to 1971. Mervyn King, Baron King of Lothbury, Lord King of Lothbury was a Professor in the Faculty of Commerce and later became Governor of the Bank of England. Sir William James Ashley was first Dean and the founder of the Birmingham Business School. Sir Nathan Bodington was Professor of Classics. Sir Michael Lyons (UK politician), Michael Lyons was Professor of Public Policy from 2001 to 2006. Sir Kenneth Mather was Professor of genetics (1948) and recipient of the 1964 Darwin Medal. Sir Richard Redmayne was Professor of Mining and later became first Chief Inspector of Mines. The art historian Sir Nikolaus Pevsner held a research post at the university. Sir Ellis Waterhouse was Barber Professor of Fine Art (1952–1970). John Cadman, 1st Baron Cadman, Lord Cadman taught petroleum engineering and is credited with creating the course 'Petroleum Engineering'. The philosopher Sir Michael Dummett held an assistant lectureship at the university. Gordon Borrie, Baron Borrie, Lord Borrie was a professor of law and dean of the faculty of law. Sir Charles Raymond Beazley was Professor of History. Prison reformer Margery Fry was first warden of University House, University of Birmingham, University House. Vice-Chancellors and Principals include Sir
Oliver Lodge Sir Oliver Joseph Lodge, (12 June 1851 – 22 August 1940) was a British physicist and writer involved in the development of, and holder of key patents for, radio. He identified electromagnetic radiation independent of Heinrich Rudolf Hertz, H ...
, Robert Hunter (physician), Lord Hunter of Newington, Sir Charles Grant Robertson, Sir Raymond Priestley, and Sir Michael Sterling.


Alumni

Four List of Nobel laureates, Nobel Prize laureates are Birmingham University alumni: Francis Aston, Maurice Wilkins, Sir John Vane, and Sir Paul Nurse. In addition soil scientist Peter Bullock (scientist), Peter Bullock contributed to the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, IPCC, which was awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize, Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. The university's alumni in the sphere of British government and politics include: British Prime Ministers
Stanley Baldwin Stanley Baldwin, 1st Earl Baldwin of Bewdley, (3 August 186714 December 1947) was a British Conservative Party (UK), Conservative Party politician who dominated the government of the Interwar Britain, United Kingdom between the world wars, serv ...
and
Neville Chamberlain Arthur Neville Chamberlain (; 18 March 18699 November 1940) was a British politician of the Conservative Party (UK), Conservative Party who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1937 to May 1940. He is best known for his for ...

Neville Chamberlain
; Chief Minister of Gibraltar Joe Bossano; British cabinet minister and UN Under-Secretary-General Valerie Amos, Baroness Amos, Baroness Amos; Cabinet Ministers Julian Smith (politician), Julian Smith and Hilary Armstrong; British ministers of state Ann Widdecombe, Richard Tracey, Derek Fatchett, and Anna Soubry; British High Commissioner to New Zealand and Ambassador to South Africa Sir David Aubrey Scott; Governor of the Turks and Caicos Islands Nigel Dakin; Welsh Assembly Government minister Jane Davidson; and UN weapons inspector David Kelly (weapons expert), David Kelly. Birmingham's alumni in the field of government and politics in other countries include Prime Minister of St. Lucia Kenny Anthony; Prime Minister of the Bahamas Perry Christie; Singapore Minister of Finance Hu Tsu Tau Richard; Singapore Senior Minister of State Matthias Yao; Minister of Defence of Kenya Mohamed Yusuf Haji; Tanzanian minister Mark Mwandosya; Tongan minister ʻAna Taufeʻulungaki; Ethiopian cabinet minister Junedin Sado; Deputy Prime Minister of Mauritius Rashid Beebeejaun; Saudi minister Abdulaziz bin Mohieddin Khoja; Foreign Minister of Gambia Bala Garba Jahumpa; Ghanaian minister Juliana Azumah-Mensah; Egyptian Minister William Selim Hanna; Nigerian minister Emmanuel Chuka Osammor; Saint Lucian minister Alvina Reynolds; Lebanese foreign minister Lucien Dahdah; Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema and Zimbabwean ministers David Karimanzira and Didymus Mutasa. Alumni in the world of business include: director of the Bank of England Eric Roll, Baron Roll of Ipsden, Lord Roll of Ipsden; CEO of J Sainsbury plc Mike Coupe; Chairman of the Shell Transport and Trading Company plc Sir John Jennings (businessman), John Jennings; automobile executive Sir George Turnbull (businessman), George Turnbull; President of the Confederation of British Industry Sir Clive Thompson (businessman), Clive Thompson; CEO and chairman of BP Sir Peter Walters; Chairman of British Aerospace Sir Austin Pearce; mobile communications entrepreneur Mo Ibrahim; fashion designer and retailer George Davies (retailer), George Davis; founder of Osborne Computer Corporation Adam Osborne; and chairman & CEO of Bass plc Sir Ian Prosser. Alumni in the legal arena include Hong Kong Chief Justice of the Court of Final Appeal Geoffrey Ma Tao-li; Hong Kong Judge of the Court of Final Appeal Robert Tang; Justice of Appeal at the Court of Appeal in Tanzania Robert Kisanga; Justice of the Supreme Court of Belize Michelle Arana; Lord Justice of Appeal Sir Philip Otton; and High Court Judges Dame Nicola Davies (judge), Nicola Davies, Sir Michael Davies (judge), Michael Davies, Sir Henry Globe, and Dame Lucy Theis. Alumni in the armed forces include Chief of the General Staff General Sir Mike Jackson (British Army officer), Mike Jackson; and Director General of the Army Medical Services Alan Hawley (British Army officer), Alan Hawley. Alumni in the sphere of religion include Metropolitan Archbishop and Primate of the Anglican Church in South East Asia Bolly Lapok; Anglican Bishops Paul Bayes, Alan Smith (bishop), Alan Smith, Stephen Venner, Michael Langrish, and Eber Priestley; Anglican Suffragan Bishops Brian Castle and Colin Docker; Catholic Archbishop Kevin McDonald (bishop), Kevin McDonald; and Catholic bishop Philip Egan. Alumni in the field of healthcare include: chair of the National Institute for Clinical Excellence David Haslam (physician), David Haslam; Dame Hilda Lloyd, the first woman to be elected as president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists; Chief Scientific Officer in the NHS Sue Hill; Chief Dental Officer for England Barry Cockcroft (dentist), Barry Cockcroft; and Chief Medical officer for England Sir Liam Donaldson. Alumni in the domain of engineering include: Chairman of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority and of the Central Electricity Generating Board Walter Marshall, Baron Marshall of Goring, Lord Marshall of Goring; Chairman of British Aerospace Sir Austin Pearce; Chief Engineer of the PWD Shaef in World War II Sir Francis McLean (engineer), Francis McLean; and Director of Production at the Ministry of Munitions during World War I Sir Henry Fowler (engineer), Henry Fowler. Alumni in the creative industries include actors Madeleine Carroll, Tim Curry, Tamsin Greig, Matthew Goode, Nigel Lindsay, Elliot Cowan, Geoffrey Hutchings, Judy Loe, Jane Wymark, Mariah Gale, Hadley Fraser, Elizabeth Henstridge, and Norman Painting; actors and comedians Victoria Wood and Chris Addison; dancer/choreographer and co-creator of 'Riverdance' Jean Butler, social media influencer and YouTuber Hannah Witton, children's author and scholar Fawzia Gilani-Williams, author Polly Ho-Yen, musicians Simon Le Bon of Duran Duran and Christine McVie of Fleetwood Mac, and travel writer Alan Booth. Alumni in academia include: University Vice-Chancellors Frank Horton (physicist), Frank Horton, Sir Robert Howson Pickard, Sir Louis Matheson, Derek Burke, Sir Alex Jarratt, Sir Philip Baxter, Vincent Watts, P. B. Sharma, Berrick Saul, and Wahid Omar (academic), Wahid Omar; neurobiologist and Emeritus Professor at the University of Cambridge Sir Gabriel Horn, physicians Sir Alexander Markham, Sir Gilbert Barling, Brian MacMahon, Aaron Valero, and Sir Arthur Thomson (physician), Arthur Thomson; neurologist Sir Michael Owen (neurologist), Michael Owen; physicists John Stewart Bell, Sir Alan Cottrell, Brian Flowers, Baron Flowers, Lord Flowers,
Harry Boot Henry Albert Howard Boot (29 July 1917 – 8 February 1983) was an English physicist who with John Randall (physicist), Sir John Randall and James Sayers (physicist), James Sayers developed the cavity magnetron, which was one of the keys to the ...
, Elliott H. Lieb (recipient of the 2003 Henri Poincaré Prize), Stanley Mandelstam, Edwin Ernest Salpeter (recipient of the 1997 Crafoord Prize in Astronomy), Sir Ernest William Titterton, and Raymond Wilson (physicist), Raymond Wilson (recipient of the 2010 Kavli Prize in Astrophysics); statistician Peter McCullagh; chemist Sir Robert Howson Pickard; biologists Sir Kenneth Murray (biologist), Kenneth Murray and Lady Noreen Murray; zoologists Desmond Morris and Karl Shuker; behavioural neuroscientist Barry Everitt (scientist), Barry Everitt; palaeontologist Harry B. Whittington; computer scientist Mike Cowlishaw; Women's writing academic Lorna Sage; philosopher John Lewis (philosopher), John Lewis; economist and historian Homa Katouzian; theologian and biochemist Arthur Peacocke; labour economics, labour economist David Blanchflower; Professor of Social Policy at the London School of Economics Sir John Hills (academic), John Hills; geographer Geoffrey J.D. Hewings; Professor of Geology and ninth President of Cornell University Frank H. T. Rhodes; Government Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Alan Cottrell; and former astronaut Rodolfo Neri Vela. Alumni in the world of sport are many. They include Lisa Clayton, the first woman to sail the globe single-handed; 400 metres runner Allison Curbishley, who won silver at the 1998 Commonwealth Games; team pursuit cyclist Paul Manning (cyclist), Paul Manning, who won bronze, silver and gold at the Olympics of 2004, 2008 and 2012; sports scholar Izzy Christiansen, who played football for Birmingham City, Everton and Manchester City before her call up to the senior England squad; Warwickshire and England cricketer Jim Troughton; and Adam Pengilly who competed as a skeleton racer at the 2006 Winter Olympics, 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics and was elected to the IOC Athletes' Commission, International Olympic Committee Athletes' Commission in 2010. Triathlete Chrissie Wellington and Rachel Joyce (triathlete), Rachel Joyce won the ITU Long Distance World Championship on 2008 and 2011, and Chrissie holds the four fastest times in the World Ironman competition. She received an OBE in 2009, and the current world-class gym at the Sport & Fitness club on campus is named in her honour. Whilst still studying at the university, student Lily Owsley scored the field hockey gold medal-winning goal at the 2016 Summer Olympics, 2016 Rio Olympics with the help of teammate and fellow UoB graduate Sophie Bray. Middle-distance athlete Hannah England won the World Championship 1500m silver in 2011 and after retiring from athletics officially in 2019, worked alongside fellow athlete and husband Luke Gunn in the Sport department at the university. In recent years, Birmingham has seen scholars such as athletes Jonathan Davies (athlete), Jonny Davies, 2020 British indoor champion over 3000m; Sarah McDonald, a former 1500m British Champion, and Mari Smith, the current British indoor silver medallist over 800m pass through the doors. Fran Williams, senior England netballer player, won Bronze with the England Roses at the Vitality Netball World Cup in Liverpool in 2019, the youngest player on the squad at 22 years old, and Laura Keates, England international rugby player, who was part of the 2014 World Cup-winning squad. Barbara Slater, daughter of Wolverhampton Wanderer's legend and UoB's Director of Sport in 1972 Bill Slater, became Director of BBC Sport from 2009, and was the first woman to hold this title. She led the broadcast of the London 2012 Olympics – the biggest television event in British broadcasting history. Former Manchester United Chief Executive David Gill learned the ropes of financing at Birmingham, studying Industrial, Economic and Business Studies in 1978; sports commentator Simon Brotherton developed his career whilst studying at UoB, and Sir Patrick Head, founder of the Williams team which dominated Formula One in the 1990s, studied Mechanical Engineering. Across disciplines, John Crabtree (businessman), John Crabtree, who graduated in law in 1972, achieved success as a lawyer and businessman, was awarded the OBE for his charity work, and served as High Sheriff of the West Midlands and Lord Lieutenant of the West Midlands, and as chair of the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games Organising Committee.


See also

* Armorial of UK universities * List of modern universities in Europe (1801–1945) * List of universities in the United Kingdom


References

;Notes ;Bibliography * * * * * *


External links

* *
Guild of Students (The Guild functions as the Students' Union)

University of Birmingham Foundation
{{DEFAULTSORT:Birmingham, University Of University of Birmingham, Buildings and structures in Birmingham, West Midlands, University of Birmingham Educational institutions established in 1900 History of Birmingham, West Midlands, University of Birmingham Russell Group 1900 establishments in England Universities established in the 20th century Universities UK