University of Birmingham Back
University accreditation applies to courses from this institution
Birmingham has been challenging and developing great minds for more than a century. Characterised by a tradition of innovation, research at the University has broken new ground, pushed forward the boundaries of knowledge and made an impact on people’s lives.
We continue this tradition today and have ambitions for a future that will embed our work and recognition of the Birmingham name on the international stage.
Universities are never complete. They develop as new challenges and opportunities occur. At Birmingham we innovate, we push the frontiers of understanding; we ask new research questions, we turn theory through experiment into practice – because that’s what great universities do.
A brief history
The University grew out of the radical vision of our first Chancellor, Joseph Chamberlain. Founded in 1900, Birmingham represented a new model for higher education. This was England’s first civic university, where students from all religions and backgrounds were accepted on an equal basis.
Birmingham has continued to be a university unafraid to do things a little differently, and in response to the challenges of the day. It was a founder member of the National Union of Students and the first university in the country to:
- be built on a campus model
- establish a faculty of commerce
- incorporate a medical school
- offer degrees in dentistry
- create a women’s hall of residence
- have a purpose-built students’ union building
The University of Birmingham was established by Queen Victoria by Royal Charter in 1900 and was the UK’s first civic or 'redbrick' university. The first phase of building work on the campus was completed in 1909 under the auspices of the esteemed architect Sir Aston Webb. We celebrated the centenary of those buildings in July 2009.
A sustainable University
The University makes a significant contribution to sustainable development, not only in its role as an globally recognised provider of research and teaching, but also in the way it performs as a business engaging positively with the local and wider community. Whether it's our environmental policies, research into sustainable energies or our schemes to encourage staff and students to travel more sustainably, sustainability is at the core of the University's activity.
Birmingham's global profile
The University of Birmingham has welcomed international students since 1900. Today we have one of the largest international student communities in the UK with over 5,000 students from more than 150 countries worldwide currently studying with us.
In addition, 31% of our academic staff are from outside the UK, demonstrating that Birmingham is seeking to attract the brightest talent to its academic community from around the globe.
Our global ambition
21st-century politics, business, industry and academia are global in their nature; therefore, Birmingham is developing its international profile rapidly.
We already have permanent representation in China, India and the US in Chicago, and we are using these links to build partnerships that will enhance our research, internationalise the educational experience that we offer, and develop a global perspective amongst our staff and students.
An ability to operate across the globe will be what distinguishes the Birmingham graduate, academic and professional of the future.
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