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Postgraduate Studies at the University of Warwick

With regard to the UK, for 2024 the three main tables, the Guardian, the Times and the Complete University Guide respectively ranked Warwick 9th, 14th and 11th. These rankings are of course based upon a range of elements such as student satisfaction, student : teaching staff ratios, research activity etc, so they are a good indicator of overall quality.


With respect to world tables, in 2024 The Times Higher World University Rankings put Warwick at 106th, whilst in 2024 QS World University Rankings placed Warwick at 67th in the world.

In terms of subject rankings, Warwick has a lot of subjects in the top 10 and 20 in the UK, and 16 subjects amongst the world’s top 100.


Why so many top subjects? This can be attributed in many cases to the quality of research at Warwick which directly influences the teaching of both undergraduate and postgraduate students. Warwick is of course a member of the prestigious ‘Russell Group’, comprising 24 research intensive member universities.


With over 28,000 students now, Warwick is a relatively ‘young’ university by UK standards, having first been established in 1965 with around 200 students. The student community now is very diverse, with over 10,000 coming from outside the UK from around 150 countries. The more than 7,000 academic and support staff are also a diverse mix of different people from very different backgrounds.


Many student clubs and societies exist on campus to help network outside the narrow confines of your immediate academic circle, and to connect with other students from all over the world who will often become lifelong friends.


The University of Warwick is actually located in the city of Coventry, close to the smaller, mediaeval town of Warwick. In Coventry itself is another university, Coventry University. Coventry is the 10th biggest city in the UK and with two universities based there offers a great range of activities and sights for students to enjoy, from food to music festivals to history.


10 to 15 minutes from the University of Warwick campus is Warwick Castle, first built by William the Conqueror, and which started life as a wooden fort in 1068. Situated in the heart of England, the area is part of what is often referred to as ‘Shakespeare’s England’. But Coventry is also a very vibrant ‘student city’, as mentioned already, students making up around 10% of the population, and is consistently ranked by QS as being in the top 50 best student cities in the world, this year coming in at 44th. 


The Campus


The University of Warwick is what is known as a ‘campus university’, rather than a university within a city. This means that it is ‘self-contained’ within its own area, with faculties, departments, accommodation, restaurants, cafes, shops, supermarket, bank, post office, as well as doctor’s surgery and pharmacy, all on one site. It is close to the city of Coventry but set in its own 720 acres, including large green parks too. There is a free shuttle bus service to transport students around the campus if they do not have the time or inclination to walk, for example, if it is raining. There is also a taxi and bus rank for transportation to the city and other parts of the country.


Many other facilities on campus include a new fitness gym, theatre, cinema and art gallery. From concerts to plays and comedy acts, there is always something going on, with discounted tickets for students.


Faculties and Departments 


There are three Faculties at Warwick: the Faculty of Arts, the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Medicine, and the Faculty of Social Sciences. Within these faculties are many different departments offering a wide variety of undergraduate and postgraduate courses and research opportunities, including taught Master’s degrees, Master’s research degrees (generally more of these research degrees in the sciences) and PhDs. With so much choice it really is important to take a long hard look at the University website to get a true picture of what is available for your area of interest. 


Some Master’s taught courses are more popular than others: the Economics programme is one such and is ranked 5th in the UK and 22nd in the world. The Management Master’s course is also, and ranked 2nd in the UK. There are many others, so make sure to do your homework!


Postgraduate Applications


Whichever course or programme you settle on applying for, postgraduate taught courses must be applied for by July 31st of the year you are planning to start at the university.


People with a first degree from the UK will need a 2:1 or higher class honours degree usually, though some courses will accept a 2:2. For students applying with qualifications from outside the UK system, you need to check equivalences on the university website (see the link at the end of this article).


Aspiring PhD students can apply throughout the year by a rather different route. You will need to find a ‘supervisor’ first, that is, an academic researcher at Warwick operating in the area you are interested in researching and who will be willing to supervise your research. Again, the university website has an area specifically designed to help with this process. 


Student Support Services & Careers


There exists a wide array of support services for Warwick students, from well-being to disability support and careers advice, as well as the student union.


With respect to careers, Warwick graduates are much sought after by some of the world’s top employers. Employer rankings for 2024 ranked Warwick 10th in the UK for employer reputation, the 6th most targeted university by the UK’s top 100 employers, with graduates being the 6th highest paid in the UK 6 months after graduating.


To help you land those jobs Warwick will provide support in many areas, including careers fairs, employer presentations, interview preparations, CV writing workshops, internship opportunities and more. Whilst Master’s students will only be at Warwick for one year, the support they are entitled to goes well beyond their leaving the campus.


Also good news for international students are the recent changes to the graduate route visa in the UK. These changes enable students to stay and work or look for work in the UK for a maximum period of two years – three years for doctoral students. All you need to do is complete your degree successfully. There is no minimum salary requirement and no cap on the number of such students entitled to stay and do this.


Accommodation


On the Warwick campus there is accommodation for 6,000 students, both undergraduate and postgraduate. On campus accommodation is much more limited for postgraduate students, but for the most part it is international students who live on the campus as Warwick wants to make the transition to living and studying in the UK as easy as possible.


Students on campus live in mixed groups, meaning the university likes to keep a mixture of students taking different courses sharing the same apartment. Most are mixed gender as well, but for people having religious or other reasons for not wanting this, they can request alternative accommodation. The one thing that is not mixed is study level, so if you are a postgraduate student you will be living with only other postgraduate students.


Regular cleaning and utility bills are included in the rent that you pay. For the different types of accommodation and cost you should see the university website – costs can range from around £91 to £233 per week, depending upon the type of accommodation / size of rooms / shared or own shower room etc.


Off-campus accommodation is run by Warwick’s ‘partnership providers’ just for postgraduate students, most in Coventry and just about 15 to 20 minutes bus ride to the campus. Whilst this accommodation is run by private providers, it is vetted by the university accommodation team and checked for quality, cleanliness and comfort.


Whilst cost of living is going to vary due to different needs and tastes and type of accommodation chosen, the British Council has estimated that a postgraduate master’s student might spend between £900 and £1,400 a month in their year of study on living costs. For PhDs this is obviously going to be for 3 to 4 years.


Scholarships


There are scholarships available at departmental and university level, and quite a lot of PhD scholarships. Once you have identified exactly which course you are interested in or supervisor you feel is most apt for your interests, then you will be able to also identify appropriate scholarships to apply for.


Other opportunities to find out more about Warwick


Currently there are a lot of virtual opportunities to meet students and staff online for finding out more and chatting with real people. See the links below to find out more:




Live chats with departments and admissions: https://warwick.ac.uk/study/events/


Student led campus tours and chance to chat. Interactive Panels will cover Student Life, Living at Warwick (Accommodation), Careers and Opportunities, Managing Your Money and Support: https://events.bizzabo.com/warwickexperience/


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