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University of York


The first petition for the establishment of a university in York was presented to James I in 1617. In 1641 a second petition was drawn up but was not delivered due to the English Civil War in 1642. A third petition was created in 1647 but was rejected by Parliament. In the 1820s there were discussions about the founding of a university in York, but this did not come to fruition due to the founding of Durham University in 1832. In 1903 F. J. Munby and the Yorkshire Philosophical Society, amongst others, proposed a 'Victoria University of Yorkshire'.

Oliver Sheldon a director of Rowntree's and co-founder of York Civic Trust, was a driving force behind the campaign to found the university.


Morrell and the history of the foundations. In 1963 the university opened with 216 undergraduates, 14 postgraduates, and 28 academic and administrative staff. The university started with six departments: Economics, Education, English, History, Mathematics, Politics. At the time, the university consisted of three buildings, principally the historic King's Manor in the city center and Heslington Hall, which has Tudor foundations and is in the village of Heslington on the edge of York. A year later, work began on purpose-built structures on the Heslington Campus, which now forms the main part of the university.

Baron James of Rusholme, the university's first Vice-Chancellor, said of the University of York that "it must be collegiate in character, that it must deliberately seek to limit the number of subjects and that much of the teaching must be done via tutorials and seminars".Due to the influence of Graeme Moodie, founding head of the Politics Department, students are involved in the governance of the university at all levels, and his model has since been widely adopted.

York's first two Colleges, Derwent and Langwith, were founded in 1965 and were followed by Alcuin and Vanbrugh in 1967 and Goodricke in 1968. In 1972 this was followed by Wentworth College.

The university was noted for its inventive approach to teaching. It was known for its early adoption of joint honors degrees which were often very broad such as history and biology. It also took an innovative approach to social science introducing a five-year-long degree in the subject.

Important Facts

Why York?

No matter where you are from, or what you would like to do when you graduate, the York experience will challenge, inspire, develop, and support you. Through a combination of excellent teaching, rich and varied campus life and a cultured city, you'll have the experience of a lifetime.

Teaching excellence

We are a leading UK university for academic excellence. We are ranked 148th in the QS World University Rankings 2020 and we have seven world top 100 subjects in the QS World University Rankings by subject 2019.

Join us and you’ll work with world?leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do.

Inspirational research

York is one of the world’s premier institutions for inspirational and life-changing research. We attract world-leading academics, whose research brings vibrancy and cutting edge ideas to the teaching you will receive at York. 

As a member of the prestigious Russell Group of 24 leading UK universities, we are committed to maintaining the very best research and teaching standards.

We were ranked 14th overall and 10th for the impact of our research in the Times Higher Education's ranking of the Research Excellence Framework 2014. The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is a UK-wide assessment of the quality of research in universities undertaken by expert review panels.

Fantastic student experience

You'll meet people from all over the world among our community of over 18,000 students, representing over 150 countries.

Try something new and meet interesting people by getting involved in our friendly and supportive campus life. There are over 200 social, cultural, and religious student-led societies and 65+ sports clubs to choose from.

We also have an International Students' Association (Facebook) which is a student-run society that organizes a range of social events throughout the year in and around Yorkshire.

A safe and supportive environment

We recognize that studying in a different country can be daunting so we have an excellent structure in place to give you all the help you need. From English language support to career advice, we will ensure that you are well supported during your time with us.

You can also relax in the knowledge that you'll be living and studying in a safe and green campus environment and student-friendly city.

Ranking / Awards

Global Universities Rankings

  • #259 in Best Global Universities (tie)
  • #115 in Best Global Universities in Europe (tie)
  • #27 in Best Global Universities in the United Kingdom (tie)

Subject Rankings

  • #85 in Arts and Humanities (tie)
  • #237 in Biology and Biochemistry
  • #253 in Chemistry (tie)
  • #281 in Clinical Medicine (tie)
  • #171 in Economics and Business
  • #611 in Engineering (tie)
  • #151 in Environment/Ecology (tie)
  • #317 in Neuroscience and Behavior
  • #394 in Physics (tie)
  • #134 in Plant and Animal Science (tie)
  • #117 in Psychiatry/Psychology
  • #87 in Social Sciences and Public Health


  • Ranking: 128
  • Ranking: 150
  • Type of Accommodation: On Campus


Annual Cost of living 9207 GBP /year
Average Annual UG Fee 22080 GBP
Average Annual PG Fee 21890 GBP
Application Fee 20 GBP


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Contact Information

  • York YO10 5DD United Kingdom
  • 9898989898
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Campus Information

Campus West

In 1964, work began on the campus facilities in the grounds of Heslington Hall. The marshy land was drained, the winding lake which dominates the campus was built, and the area was landscaped. The original buildings were designed by architects Sir Andrew Derbyshire and Stirrat Johnson-Marshall, with input also from the Vice-Chancellor Lord James, Professor Patrick Nuttgens and the Registrar John West-Taylor. The new structures were assembled using the CLASP system of prefabricated construction, hence York's inclusion among the so-called plate glass universities. The buildings are connected by numerous covered walkways and bridges. Most of the university's arts departments occupy premises in the college buildings, while many of the science departments have their own buildings.

Heslington Hall

Heslington Hall is a Grade II* listed rebuilt manor house consisting of a central nine-bay two-storey block with attics and two two-storey wings at each end. It is built of brick in English bond with sandstone ashlar dressings. The original Manor house was constructed in 1568 for Sir Thomas Eynns, the Secretary and Keeper of the Seal to the Council of the North; and his wife Elizabeth.

King's Manor

Located in York city centre, about 2 miles (3 km) from the main Heslington West campus, the historic King's Manor began as the Abbot's House of St Mary's Abbey and went on to become the headquarters of the Council of the North following the dissolution of the monasteries. For many years from 1966, the King's Manor housed the Institute of Advanced Architectural Studies (IoAAS). The IoAAS was a post-graduate Institute primarily specialising in providing mid-career education for architects and others. In particular, it became well known for its one-year Diploma Course in Conservation Studies.

Campus East

Several departments have purpose-built facilities on Campus East, including Law and the York Management School. In October 2010, several departments moved into new facilities on Campus East including the Department of Theatre, Film and Television and the Department of Computer Science.

Programs Offered


M.Sc International Business and Strategic Management

  • Length 01 Year  
  • Total Tuition Fee 22440 GBP
  • Application Fee N/A
  • Average processing time 40 days
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MA International Relations

  • Length 01 Year  
  • Total Tuition Fee 18240 GBP
  • Application Fee 20 GBP
  • Average processing time 40 days
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