Why Derby?

Why the University of Derby?

We pride ourselves on offering a supportive learning environment to the 34,000 students who place their trust in us to deliver what they need. Delivering a high quality academic learning experience with a personal touch forms the core of what we do.


Across the University, we are focused on real world, experiential learning, informed by research. We are nationally recognised for excellence in engaging with employers and businesses. In the 2014 REF, three-quarters of our submission was judged to be at least ‘internationally significant’, with 5.4% deemed to be ‘world leading’ and 24.5% ‘internationally excellent’.


We are financially strong and during the last five years have invested over £150 million in facilities, designed to give our students the very best possible learning environment. We can offer some of the best and newest facilities in the country, for example a simulated hospital and working radiography suite, purpose-built crime scene house, commercial spa and salon, working theatre, law court and our own 58 acre Outdoor Leadership Centre. In addition, we have recently opened a new multi-million pound sports centre, a new £20 million home for the Derby Law School, are currently building a new £12m STEM building and developing a new campus in Chesterfield.  We have more investment planned and continue to develop our teaching to be as innovative, stimulating and engaging as possible.


The University is distinctive in the sector thanks to Buxton & Leek College, part of the University of Derby Group, through which we provide a comprehensive, high quality further education and training service to students from age 16 upwards living in Leek, Buxton and the surrounding areas.


This also provides an easier transition to higher levels of study for students who can progress onto higher education at the Buxton and Leek campuses as well as the main University campus at Derby.


The University of Derby has offered online distance learning to students since 2001 and in 2011, based on the increasing success of the distance learning courses, the University

launched University of Derby Online Learning (UDOL), as a separate business, offering a diverse range of courses to students studying both nationally and internationally. This capacity has allowed Derby to increase the number of part-time students at a time when the sector is witnessing a serious decline.


Our Commercial and Corporate Learning Departments provide a variety of services, working with employers as partners, including bespoke learning solutions, accredited programmes and apprenticeships, CDP, and short courses, knowledge transfer and consultancy to a range of organisations and businesses in the public and private sectors.


We contribute over £560 million to the regional and wider economy each year and have deep connections to local communities and businesses. The City of Derby is also home to

an increasing number of international companies, including Rolls-Royce, Bombardier and Toyota, many of whom already work closely with staff and students. We are committed to

developing our links across a diverse county and enhancing the role we play culturally and economically in the region.


We are entering a dramatically different era in the provision of Higher Education in the UK and it is more important than ever that we focus upon our students, their motivations and

aspirations. Derby is in a good place, we have maintained our position in the competitive market for under-graduates, we had our best qualified intake, the best finals on record, the best pass and progression rates at intermediate stages and were ranked in the Top 10 nationally for both the employability of our graduates and for teaching quality. Demand for places has risen nearly 20% over two years and we are in a strong position to develop further and be a genuine University of Choice for students, employers and partners.

Great people, original thinking, inspiring individuals – changing lives

The University of Derby is a modern, innovative education provider that achieved its university status in 1992. Teaching at our Derby site actually dates back to 1851, when it was a Diocesan Institution for training teachers, so we have over 160 years of expertise in education.


Inspire, Innovate, Impact – Distinctly Derby


Our Corporate Plan 2014-2019 sets out how we will rise to the challenges of a dramatically different era in the provision of Higher Education in the UK. It sets out a ‘back to basics’ plan

with a clear focus on delivering the core fundamentals required of a high quality, successful learning institution.


Our strategic ambitions



‘To inspire our learners through an outstanding teaching and learning environment, ‘work-relevant’ ethos, and a ‘best in class’ experience’


Our academic and support services teams will work in partnership to provide an outstanding teaching and learning environment in which all our learners will thrive. We will be passionate about the success of our learners; challenging and supportive, and ensure we offer first class facilities and an enriching extra-curricular life.


The ‘work-relevant’ ethos at the heart of our approach will ensure our learners leave the University with a good degree and, more importantly, the practical skills and experience valued by employers. In the ever-increasingly competitive world of work, our learners will stand out from the crowd, enhance their career aspirations and achieve their goals.



‘To innovate through sector leading flexible and dynamic delivery methods and curricula’


We will anticipate the constantly changing needs of our learners and be at the forefront of an approach to education driven by flexible and dynamic delivery methods, innovative use of

technology and forward-looking curricula. We will focus on the needs of our learners and employers and set the trends that others will follow. Our willingness to ‘push the boundaries’ and desire for continuous improvement will establish us a stand-out proposition for all learners, however they wish to learn. We will take the University to our learners, whether they choose to study online, in the workplace, or on campus.



‘To impact significantly on the economic and social wellbeing of our region and its place in the global economy’


We will champion the continued prosperity of our city and region as well as its place in the global economy. Our priorities and strengths will be fully aligned with the region’s businesses, economic and social needs. The value of our applied research, enterprise and knowledge transfer and the reputation of our academics, learners and graduates, will make us a business partner of choice within our region, nationally and internationally. We will have a material impact on the social wellbeing of our community in health, education, sport and

culture, and will support local employment needs.

Our Values

In striving to realise our strategic ambitions it is essential we meet our values which form the bedrock of our approach:

• Quality

• Valuing people

• Customer focus

• Challenge and innovation

• Opportunity and openness

Students are at the heart of everything that we do and we are committed to providing a learning experience that is flexible in delivery, tailored to students’ requirements and aimed at challenging and broadening the student experience. We want all our students, staff and stakeholders to be delighted by their experience, proud of their achievements and become active promoters of the University.

Key Figures and Facts

•           Over 34,000 students study with us (covering undergraduate, postgraduate, international and online)

•           We are ranked in the top ten nationally for graduate employment – with 96.7% of our graduates in employment or further education within six months of their graduation

•           In the most recent National Student Survey, we increased our overall satisfaction rating to 88%. We were in the top 10 nationally for Quality of Teaching.

•           We are one of the UK’s leading institutions for Education studies – rated ‘Outstanding’ by OFSTED

•           In the last Research Assessment Exercise 75% of our research was judged to be of at least international class standard and the number of Units of Assessment and of staff submitted increased significantly.

•           Our average UCAS tariff points on entry are at 300, and there has been a steady increase in the number of students achieving Firsts and 2:1s while undergraduate retention is running at over 93%.

•           We have some of the newest and best facilities in the UK, having invested over £150 million in the past five years.

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