Good University Guide 2023

Bournemouth University

National rank

Firsts / 2:1s
Completion rate

Key stats

Teaching quality
Student experience
Research quality
Graduate prospects
Bournemouth University

Contact details


Fern Barrow, Poole, BH12 5BB,

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Bournemouth continues to expand its provision of media courses. New degrees in virtual and augmented reality and in immersive media are on the way in September 2023.

The university has developed specialist facilities to consolidate its international reputation as one of the leading institutions for computer animation, TV and media production, music and sound production. The Poole Gateway Building, opened in 2020, has industry-standard features in 5,000 sq m. Students taking the university’s flagship media courses have access to two television studios with ultra-high-definition cameras, a film studio and sound stage, green screen, edit suites and a motion-capture studio for animation.

The university also hosts the National Centre for Computer Animation and students also have access to Games PC and Mac laboratories, a critical listening lab and seminar and workshop facilities.  

Research in communication, cultural and media studies, and leisure and tourism — two of Bournemouth’s most well-regarded areas — performed well in the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF 2021). The breadth and volume of the university's submission was substantially increased since the previous assessment in 2014 and involved three times as many staff. However, Bournemouth has dropped 16 places to rank 80th in our research quality rating based on the latest results, against stronger gains at other universities. 

Health students practise their burgeoning skills in simulation suites in another Gateway building recently opened on the main Lansdowne campus — replicating an operating theatre, hospital wards, a birthing room and a residential flat for practising at-home care.

Bournemouth pledges to provide a professional work placement during every undergraduate degree in the UK or abroad. Dedicated university staff help students to find the ideal posting from four weeks to a year in a range of workplaces. The university has cultivated links with more than 70 institutions worldwide, enabling Bournemouth students to have opportunities to study abroad too. Bournemouth’s Skills Development Programme — an extracurricular activity with a focus on employer-led skills and achievements — is tailored to help students shine as graduates anywhere in the world. 

The university has gained eight places year-on-year to enter the top 50 for graduate prospects, reaching 48th place. Our analysis examined the proportion of students in highly skilled work or further study 15 months after finishing their degree. 

Good progression to highly skilled employment contributed to a silverrating for Bournemouth in the Teaching Excellence Framework. Assessors highlighted student retention and the success of the university’s mentoring programme, which ensures that all first-years are offered advice from student representatives who are further along in their chosen course.

Bournemouth was using remote teaching technology before the Covid-19 pandemic struck, having installed the £6 million Brightspace virtual learning environment in 2017. It did not stop a huge slump in student satisfaction during the pandemic, contributing to a 38-place tumble in our academic table in 2021. Although Bournemouth has recovered somewhat in our analysis of student satisfaction, derived from the latest National Student Survey, published in summer 2022, it remains outside the top 100: it ranks 103= (up 21 places) in terms of the wider undergraduate experience, and 109th (up 18 places) for satisfaction with teaching quality. 

In-person teaching has now returned, supplemented by recorded lectures and seminars to which students may listen back remotely. 

Applications to study at Bournemouth rose 14 per cent year-on-year in the 2021 admissions cycle, restoring them to former levels. The university’s subject mix, seaside location and promising graduate prospects are a reliable drawcard. Enrolments have remained fairly steady over the past decade and edged up a little in 2021. 

Bournemouth is in 66th place overall in our social inclusion index measuring efforts to widen participation for underrepresented groups. The AccessBU contextual offer system makes allowances for the most disadvantaged students, who may be accepted with lower grades.

On the Talbot campus, students can get in shape with pole fitness, yoga, boxercise, Zumba and spin. Bournemouth runs a huge range of activities including basketball drop-in sessions, courses in the martial art jiu-jitsu, surfing and kayaking.

Chapel Gate is the university’s recently acquired 65-acre sports facility near the airport, where students can compete in football, rugby, hockey, table tennis, cricket, archery and rifle shooting. 

First-years are guaranteed one of 3,640 study bedrooms allocated on a first come, first served basis, not far from Bournemouth’s seven-mile sandy beach.  

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Category Score Rank
Ranking - 89= (106=)
Teaching quality 71.8 109th
Student experience 68.7 103rd=
Research quality 30.7 80th
Ucas entry points 112 108th=
Graduate prospects 76.9 48th
Firsts and 2:1s 78.7 58th
Completion rate 82.9 86th=
Student-staff ratio 19.2 108th=
World ranking - 801= (751=)

Vital statistics











Applications/places 22,455/4,795
Applications/places ratio 4.7:1
Overall offer rate 74.9%


Places in accommodation 3,640
Accommodation costs £144 - £215
Accommodation contact


UK/EU fees £9,250
Fees (placement year) £1,850
Fees (overseas year) Full fees
Fees (international) £15,250 - £16,500
Finance website
Graduate salaries £24,000


Sport points/rank 1,182, 30th
Sport website

Social inclusion and student mix

Social Inclusion Ranking 66=
State schools (non-grammar) admissions 91%
Grammar school admissions 4%
Independent school admissions 4.9%
Ethnic minority students (all) 15.4%
Black achievement gap -26.8%
White working class males 7.6%
First generation students 48%
Low participation areas 12.6%
Working class dropout gap -1.1%
Mature 20.8%
EU students 3.5%
Other overseas students 3.5%

Student satisfaction with teaching quality

History 90.9%
Food science 87.2%
Social work 84.1%
English 80%
Art and design 78.6%
Economics 78.2%
Music 78%
Subjects allied to medicine 77.8%
Geography and environmental science 77.4%
Criminology 76.9%
Sociology 76.9%
Mechanical engineering 76.2%
Drama, dance and cinematics 74.9%
Biological sciences 73.9%
Business, management and marketing 73.7%
Accounting and finance 73.5%
Communication and media studies 72.4%
Psychology 72.3%
Politics 72.2%
Hospitality, leisure, recreation and tourism 71.5%
Anthropology 71.2%
Sports science 71%
Law 70.8%
General engineering 69.3%
Physiotherapy 68.9%
Nursing 67.7%
Archaeology and forensic science 66%
Creative writing 65.7%
Computer science 64.3%