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University of West London

University of West London
Former names
Thames Valley University, Polytechnic of West London, Reading College and School of Arts and Design, Lady Byron School, Ealing College of Higher Education, Thames Valley College of Higher Education, Queen Charlotte's College of Health Care Studies, London College of Music
Established 1992 (as Thames Valley University)
1860 (as the Lady Byron School)
Type Public
Endowment £1.173 million[1]
Chancellor Laurence Geller
(since 1 August 2010)
Vice-Chancellor Peter John
(since 1 July 2007)
Students 47,430[2]
Undergraduates 17,200[2]
Postgraduates 1,940[2]
Other students
28,290 FE[2]
Location Ealing, Brentford, Reading, and Slough, United Kingdom

The University of West London is a public university in the United Kingdom which has campuses in Ealing and Brentford in London, as well as in Reading and Slough in Berkshire.

The university has roots back to 1860, when the Lady Byron School was founded, which later became Ealing College of Higher Education. In 1990, Ealing College of Higher Education, Thames Valley College of Higher Education, Queen Charlotte's College of Health Care Studies and the London College of Music merged to form the Polytechnic of West London. In 1992, the Polytechnic of West London became a university and adopted the name Thames Valley University. In 2004, Thames Valley merged with Reading College and School of Arts and Design. A former campus in Slough was closed in 2010.

In August 2010, the university announced that it had been granted permission to change its name to the University of West London, to reflect a focusing of operations onto its Ealing and Brentford campuses.[3] The new name was formally adopted on Wednesday 6 April 2011.[4]


  • History 1
  • Campuses 2
    • New Campus 2.1
  • Organisation 3
  • Academic reputation 4
    • Academic rankings 4.1
    • Teaching standards 4.2
    • Reputation 4.3
    • Music research 4.4
  • Student life 5
    • West London Students' Union 5.1
    • Student accommodation 5.2
    • UWL Student Village (South Ealing) 5.3
  • Controversies 6
  • Notable people 7
    • Staff 7.1
    • Alumni 7.2
  • References 8
  • External links 9


The University of West London traces its roots back to 1860, when the Lady Byron School was founded at what is now University of West London's Ealing campus. The school later became Ealing College of Higher Education.

Ealing College, founded in 1860 by Lady Byron

The Slough campus was founded in January 1912 as a selective secondary school in William Street. By the 1960s, it had become Slough College of Further Education. In the 1970s it became Thames Valley College of Higher Education and in 2011 it was closed down.

In 1990, Ealing College of Higher Education, Thames Valley College of Higher Education, Queen Charlotte's College of Health Care Studies and the London College of Music were merged to become the Polytechnic of West London. Two years later, the polytechnic became a university under the Further and Higher Education Act 1992, and adopted the name Thames Valley University.

In 2004, the university merged with Reading College and School of Arts and Design (which was originally founded in 1947 as Reading Technical College). Reading College's sites at Kings Road and Crescent Road became TVU sites.

Paragon Campus in Brentford (Former TVU Branding)

In 2009, the university decided to divest itself of its further education courses, together with its Kings Road site, that it had inherited from the Reading College and School of Arts and Design. In 2010 the responsibility for further education, along with the Kings Road site, were transferred to a relaunched Reading College. The university retained its other sites in Reading, including the Crescent Road site that also originated with the Reading College and School of Arts and Design.[5][6]

In May 2009, the university announced that it be would closing its Slough campus in 2010 due to the relocation of nursing students, who make up the majority of the student body there, to Reading. Other courses will be moved to one of the university's west London campuses, although some part-time and nursing courses will remain in Slough at a different site.[7]

In August 2010, it was announced that the university would change its name to the University of West London, with the Privy Council subsequently granting permission for the change.[3] The university unveiled a new logo and branding in April 2011. Vice-Chancellor Peter John stated that the changes reflected the university's development since 1992 and new focus on its Brentford and Ealing campuses.


Slough was home to one of the campuses of Thames Valley University but due to the Heart of Slough project the campus was demolished. A new campus for the university will be opened, overlooking the centre of Slough with easy links to Slough Bus Station, Slough Railway Station, High Street and the new Thames Valley Square.

New Campus

The University of West London is seeking planning consent for the redevelopment of the St Mary's Road site in Ealing. This project will include the construction of nine residential units and one University House on land fronting The Park. The redevelopment will substantially improve the facilities for students, staff, Ealing residents and the local community. The work will enhance the external appearance of the site as well as improving the internal facilities.[8]


The University of West London is currently organised into three faculties, within which there are eight Schools. The Faculty of the Arts (FOTA), formerly the London College of Music and Media, now incorporates the London College of Music, relaunched in March 2007 and the School of Art, Design and Media (Tech Music Schools has been partnered with the university since 1993, offering a BMus in association with LCM).

The Faculty of Health and Human Sciences consists of two Schools: School of Nursing and Midwifery and School of Human and Psychosocial Sciences. The Faculty of Professional Studies is made up of three schools; Ealing Law School, the Business School, London School of Hospitality and Tourism and the School of Computing and Technology.

The university's Faculty of Technology formed part of the School of Computing and Technology in May 2010. The Graduate School[9] (based in Ealing) co-ordinates and provides support to research activities[10] and research degree courses. Currently, the University offers traditional Phd programmes as well as Professional Doctorates and Phd by Publish Works.

The university also works with the Met Film School, a private film school that is based at Ealing Studios in London, United Kingdom.[11] The school, which launched in 2003, offers two and three year Bachelors programs as well as various Master's degree programs, which are accredited through the University of West London.

Academic reputation

Walpole House in Ealing, housing the university's administration.

Academic rankings

In the 2015 edition of the major rankings of British universities the university was placed 97 out of 116 in The Guardian university guide,[12] and 110 out of 123 in The Independent associated Complete University Guide,.[13] Older data from 2010 gave the University 106 out of 122 in The Sunday Times University Guide[14] and 110 out of 114 in The Times Good University Guide.[15]

In official figures published by Times Higher Education in July 2008, the university had the best graduate employment record against its benchmark in the country, with almost 95% employed within six months of graduating. Newer figures are available but not free to the general public.

HESA (Higher Education Statistics Agency) compared data taken from its survey that looks at the destinations of graduates six months after leaving higher education against employment performance indicators for all universities across the UK. 94.8% of graduates were employed or in full-time education within six months of leaving their course, which exceeds the university's benchmark figure of 89.8% by 5% – the widest margin of any of the general universities in the league tables (excluding specialist institutions) – making the University of West London the best in the country in this respect for graduate recruitment.

Teaching standards

A lecture at the University of West London, Ealing Campus

In 2009, the University was the only university to win the Queen's Anniversary Prize for outstanding achievement and excellence in hospitality education – and it regularly win awards from major industry bodies.[16]

University of West London Careers and Employment Service is a member of the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services and has been awarded the Matrix Standard for Quality.[16]


The University launched a new 100 International Ambassador Scholarships, to recognise and provide financial support for outstanding students who wish to act as ambassadors for the University of West London.[17] The improvement in teaching and research also attracts a number of UK government scholars to attend post graduate courses at the University.[18] A 2012/13 Chevening scholar from Vietnam chose to study here and praised the teaching and industry focused course at The University of West London.[19]

Music research

Three celebrities from across the world of music visited the London College of Music (LCM) to take part in research.The trio included Grammy Award-winning producer Mike Howlett, orchestrator John Cameron (who created the orchestral score for Les Misérables) and singer/songwriter Jo Beth Young.

Student life

West London Students' Union

The West London Students' Union (informally WLSU) is the recognised student organisation of the University of West London. The Students' Union represents the 47,000 students at all its sites. WLSU is affiliated to the National Union of Students.

The new UWL Students' Union, opened in 2013

The union has the ground floor of the North Building at the St. Mary's Road campus at which Coffee Shop, Freddie Bar and Gym is located. The union aims to bring students the biggest events, ways to take up a new activities or sports, support and advice services, and a place to socialise.

The official radio station for the University is Blast Radio, based on campus in 'The Heartspace'.

Student accommodation

The University of West London Campus at St Mary's Road, Ealing.

Prior to 2006 the university operated halls of residence only at the Reading campus, although a number of private houses in the Ealing area were rented by the university and allocated to students studying there. In September 2006 the university began to offer halls of residence accommodation to students from the Ealing and Slough campuses at a student and keyworker accommodation site named Paragon. The site won the 'Major Housing Project of the Year' category at the 2007 Building awards, and is in Brentford, approximately two miles away from the Ealing campus.

Paragon is home to the tallest building to be completed using Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) in the UK, which serves as a 130,000 sq ft (12,000 m2) academic facility for the university's human sciences facility.

The student accommodation at Paragon has been criticised by its residents for being too expensive, costing the highest of all London universities' halls of residence along with SOAS in the 2007–2008 year. TVU defended the costs, asserting that the halls are of an especially high standard.[20]

UWL Student Village (South Ealing)

In autumn 2013, the university opened a new Student Village in South Ealing, offering affordable accommodation, including flexible payment terms. The Village is located a short walk from the Ealing campus on St Mary's Road, and is on the university's shuttle bus route as well as being near South Ealing tube station.[21]


In the mid-1990s, its high-profile Vice-Chancellor, Mike Fitzgerald, ushered through a networked "New Learning Environment" for undergraduate students, involving a shift to online delivery and assessment. The NLE was discontinued in this form, and Fitzgerald resigned in 1998 following a negative Quality Assurance Agency report stating there were "significant management failures" in the delivery of this model.[22] The University suffered severe financial shortfalls in the years that followed.

Notable people


Freddie Mercury, lead vocalist of the band Queen was a student in 1960s


In Media, Music & Film Industry

Several alumni at the University of West London are world famous artists, musicians and Oscar nominees:

In Business, Law, Health and Hospitality

  • Chris Galvin, BSc International Culinary Arts – Galvin Restaurants (Galvin Bistrot de Luxe, Galvin at Windows, Galvin La Chapelle, Galvin Cafe a Vin).[16]

In Politics


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b c d "Table 0a – All students by institution, mode of study, level of study, gender and domicile 2006/07" ( 
  3. ^ a b "University set to get new name".  
  4. ^ "Ealing University's name change stalled".  
  5. ^ "About Reading College". Reading College. Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  6. ^ Hewitt, Adam (31 December 2009). "Oxford college 'preferred bidder' for TVU". Reading Chronicle (Berkshire Media Group). Retrieved 23 August 2010. 
  7. ^ "News & events". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ "TVU: Graduate School". Archived from the original on 22 February 2007. Retrieved 27 March 2007. 
  10. ^ "TVU: Research". Retrieved 27 March 2007. 
  11. ^ Rosser, Michael. "Met Film School: starter for 10". Screen Daily. Retrieved 1 November 2014. 
  12. ^ "University league table 2015 - the complete list". The Guardian (London). 2 June 2014. 
  13. ^ "Top UK University League Tables and Rankings 2016". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  14. ^ Asthana, Anushka. The Sunday Times (London) Retrieved 25 May 2010. 
  15. ^ Bennett, Rosemary; Watson, Roland. The Times (London) Retrieved 25 May 2010. 
  16. ^ a b c "University of West London". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  17. ^ "International Ambassador Scholarships - University of West London". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  18. ^ "Kinh nghiệm giành học bổng Chevening ngay lần đầu đăng ký". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  19. ^ "Du học ngành truyền thông doanh nghiệp ở Anh". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  20. ^ Proctor, Lucy "TVU halls leave students broke". Ealing Gazette, 2 November 2007 (retrieved on 18–11–07)
  21. ^ "Student Village Housing - Ealing - University of West London". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  22. ^ Webster, 2000
  23. ^ "News & events". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  24. ^ "4. Freddie studied at Ealing Art College, where his contemporaries included Peter Townshend and Ronnie Wood. It was here that he started thinking about pursuing a career in music.". Odd Stuff Magazine. Retrieved 16 July 2015. 

External links

  • University of West London website
  • West London Students' Union website
  • London College of Music Website

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