University of Hertfordshire

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University of Hertfordshire
UK COA University of Hertfordshire.svg
Coat of arms of University of Hertfordshire
Motto Quaere scientiam tota vita (Latin)
Motto in English Seek Knowledge Throughout Life
Established 1952
Type Public
Endowment £617,000[1]
Chancellor Robert Gascoyne-Cecil
Vice-Chancellor Quintin McKellar[2]
Students 25,130[3]
Undergraduates 19,800
Postgraduates 5,330
Location Hertfordshire, England, United Kingdom
Campus 199.79 hectares,[4] Urban
Colours      Hertfordshire Blue[5]
     White[5]
Affiliations Association of Commonwealth Universities
University Alliance
Website www.herts.ac.uk
University of Hertfordshire Logo.svg

The University of Hertfordshire (informally Hertfordshire) is a public research university in Hertfordshire, England, United Kingdom. The university is based largely in Hatfield, Hertfordshire. Its antecedent institution, Hatfield Technical College, was founded in 1952 and was identified as one of 25 Colleges of Technology in the United Kingdom in 1959.[6] In 1992, Hatfield Polytechnic was granted university status by the British government and subsequently renamed University of Hertfordshire. From the time it was awarded university status, Hertfordshire's enrolment has steadily increased. As of 2013, it has 25,130 students[3] and 2,358 staff, 812 of which are academic members of staff.[1] It has more than 5,200 international students and a global network of more than 160,000 alumni. Hertfordshire is a member of Association of Commonwealth Universities and University Alliance. The university has an annual turnover of £234m.[7]

The university's academic activities are organised into 11 schools, within which there are around 50 academic departments and 24 research centres.[8] The university has a unique history in training aerospace engineers.[9] The university offers courses in architecture, astronomy, business, computing, education, engineering, humanities, natural sciences, pharmacy and social sciences.

The university entered the Research Assessment Exercise in 2008 and achieved a GPA of 2.403[10] with 85% world-leading or internationally excellent[11] The top five units of assessment were in history, nursing and midwifery, general engineering, physics, computer science and informatics.

History

Origins

Hatfield Technical College ca 1952
Hatfield Polytechnic ca 1969

The original campus for the university was at Roe Green in Hatfield, where it was founded as a technical college. The Gape family of St Michael’s Manor in St Albans owned the land at Roe Green from the late 17th century. In the 1920s they sold it to Hill, a farmer, who then sold it to Alan Butler, chairman of the de Havilland Aircraft Company who lived at Beech Farm nearby. In 1944 he donated ninety acres of land at Roe Green to be used for educational purposes.[12]

In 1946 the Ministry of Education approved plans for a technical college and secondary technical school on the site. In 1948 building commenced. The first principal Dr W.A.J Chapman started on the 1 January 1949 and in spring 1952 the 33 full-time and 66 part-time teachers were appointed. Hatfield Technical College opened with 1,738 students in September 1952 and in December officially opened by the Duke of Edinburgh. It was the first large technical college to be constructed in England after the war. Students attended the college on part-time or full-time courses.[13]

In 1958 it was renamed Hatfield College of Technology and by 1960 offered four-year sandwich diplomas in technology. In 1961 it was designated a regional college in England and Wales by the Ministry of Education. The governors purchased a digital computer at a cost of £29,201 in 1962 so that a computer science degree could be set up. The Council for National Academic Awards was formed in 1965 and Hatfield College was recognised for 13 honours degree courses.[13]

Sir Norman Lindop became the Principal of the College of Technology in 1966. A year later L.E. Haines was made Chair of Governors, but died shortly afterwards and was replaced by F. Bramston Austin. In the same year Bayfordbury is acquired for the college. In 1958 the Technical college was re-designated as Hatfield College of Technology. By 1960 the college was offering four year sandwich Diplomas in Technology. In 1961 the college was named as one of the regional colleges in England and Wales by the Ministry of Education. The Governors purchased a digital computer in 1962, which cost £29,201 and meant a Computer Science degree could be set up. The Council for National Academic Awards was formed in 1965 and Hatfield College was recognised for thirteen Honours Degree courses. Sir Norman Lindop became the Principal of the College of Technology in 1966. A year later L.E. Haines was made Chair of Governors, but died shortly afterwards and was replaced by F. Bramston Austin. In the same year Bayfordbury was acquired for the then Hatfield College of Technology.[14]

20th Century

Sir Brian Corby was the first Chancellor of University of Hertfordshire

In 1969 Hatfield College of Technology became Hatfield Polytechnic, offering honours degree courses in technology. The next year an observatory was built on the Bayfordbury Campus. Wall Hall and Balls Park Teacher Training Colleges merged in 1976 to become Hertfordshire College of Higher Education. In the same year Hatfield Polytechnic took over Balls Park. By 1977 more than ten per cent of the 4000 came from more than forty different countries. The Students’ Union Social Centre opened in 1977.[14]

In 1982 Dr John Illston succeeded Sir Norman Lindop as the director. A sports hall was built on the Hatfield Campus in 1984 and the number of students in that year was more than 5000. The number of staff, in the same year, had increased to 824.[14]

Professor Neil Buxton became its drector in 1987. The following year, Sir Ron Dearing and Professor Buxton signed an agreement that gave the polytechnic accreditation from the Council for National Academic Awards. Hatfield was one of only 21 polytechnics, colleges and Scottish Central institutions to be accredited at the time. Hatfield was also, in that year, one of eight polytechnics accredited for research degrees. In 1989 it was given corporate status.[14]

After John Major announced in 1991 that polytechnics were to be abolished, Hatfield Polytechnic announced its intention to apply for university status. In 1992 it became the University of Hertfordshire and Sir Brian Corby became the first Chancellor.[15] It was the first university to run a bus company by making Uno bus public. The Hertfordshire College of Health Care and Nursing Studies and the Barnet College of Nursing and Midwifery merged with the university in 1993.[14]

In 1994 the St Albans Cathedral was chosen to hold the university's graduation ceremonies. The same year saw the first publication of league tables and Hertfordshire was named as the top new university. In 1995 its law school moved to St Albans. Sir Ian MacLaurin was appointed chancellor in 1996 and in 1997 the Learning Resource Centre opened.[14]

21st Century

Aerial view of College Lane campus of University of Hertfordshire

In 2000, Olivia de Havilland, cousin of Sir Geoffrey de Havilland, visited the university to mark the inauguration of a project to build a new campus named after her cousin. The university's 50th anniversary was celebrated in 2002, by which time it had 21,695 students. In 2003 Professor Tim Wilson succeeded Professor Neil Buxton as vice-chancellor and the de Havilland campus opened.[16]

Hertfordshire Sports Village also opened in 2003.[17] In 2005 the university launched the Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Postgraduate Medical School and School of Pharmacy to enhance medical education, training and research in the region.[18] In 2006 the University opened its School of Film, Music and Media. The university opened the MacLaurin building in 2007, named in honour of its former chancellor Lord MacLaurin followed by a new law building in 2011.[19] During this period, Hertfordshire became a lead academic sponsor of Elstree University Technical College, a university technical college which opened in September 2013.[20] Hertfordshire is also the academic sponsor of Watford University Technical College[21]

In 2008 the university was shortlisted for the Times Higher Education University of the Year Award. In 2009 and 2010 it was shortlisted for the Times Higher Education Entrepreneurial University of the Year Award. In 2010, Professor Tim Wilson announced his intention to retire as vice-chancellor after more than 19 years at the university.[22]

Organisation and administration

The University of Hertfordshire was established as an independent Higher Education Corporation in 1989 under the terms of the Education Reform Act (1989). The institution is an exempt charity.[23] The board of governors has responsibility for running the university, while the academic board is responsible for academic quality and standards, academic policies, research and scholarship. The vice-chancellor oversees its day-to-day running. The current chancellor is Robert Gascoyne-Cecil and the current vice-chancellor is Quintin McKellar.[24]

The university runs on a three-term calendar in which the academic year is divided into three terms: Autumn (September–December), Spring (January–April), and Summer(April–May).[25] Full-time undergraduate students take three to four courses every year for approximately eleven weeks before their quarterly academic breaks. The school year typically begins in late September and ends in mid-May.[25]

Schools

The University offers over 800 undergraduate, postgraduate, CPD, online distance learning and short courses [26] in its 11 schools of study, within which there are around 50 academic departments and 24 research centres.[8]

  • Hertfordhire Business School
  • Computer Science
  • Creative Arts
  • Education
  • Engineering and Teachnology
  • Health and Social Work
  • Humanities
  • Law
  • Life and Medical Sciences
  • Physics, Astronomy and Mathematics
  • Hertfordshire Higher Education Consortium

Campuses

The university is primarily based on two campuses, College Lane and de Havilland. It owns a BioPark facility, a science park managed by Exemplas on behalf of the University. It also provides 6,000 square metres of laboratory and office space to life science and health technology businesses. As of 2014, there are currently 27 permanent and virtual tenants.[7]

College Lane Campus

The main site of the university remains the College Lane campus, which houses the original Hatfield Technical College building. Notable among the buildings in this campus is the university's Learning Resource Centre, a combined library and computer centre.[27] There is also a substantial collection of halls of residence and student houses, and the University of Hertfordshire Students' Union is headquartered at College Lane campus. The College Lane campus is also the location of Hertfordshire International College, which is part of the Navitas group, providing a direct pathway for international students to the University.[28] The Hertfordshire Intensive Care & Emergency Simulation Centre is also located at College Lane.

de Havilland Campus

The £120-million de Havilland campus opened in September 2003 and is situated within 15 minutes walk of College Lane, and is built on a former British Aerospace site. This campus also houses its own Learning Resource Centre, a combined library and computer centre.[17] Hertfordshire Sports Village which includes a gym, swimming pool, squash courts is also on this site.

Bayfordbury Campus

A third 50-hectare site in Bayfordbury houses the university's astronomical and atmospheric physics remote sensing observatory,[29] Regional Science Learning Centre,[30] field stations for biology and geography programmes.[31]

Meridian House

Home to some Schools within the Health and Human Faculty, this building is located on the edge of Hatfield town centre, off College Lane campus.[32] Meridian House is the location of eight clinical skills laboratories for nursing and midwifery programmes of the University. Skills facilities and ambulances for paramedic training are also situated at Meridian House, aside from counsellling programme and staff offices.[33]

Gallery

University symbols

The Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Albans is the location of the University's annual award ceremonies.

Academic dress

The University of Hertfordshire prescribes academic dress for its members. In accordance with tradition, Hertfordshire's academic dress consists of a gown, a cap and a hood. The black gown and square cap familiar to all readers of the Beano had evolved into their present form in England by the end of the Reformation. The hood, which is now the distinctive mark of a university-level qualification, is a medieval in origin, and was originally functional.[34]

Ceremonial mace

The ceremonial mace was produced in 1999 by craftsman Martyn Pugh. Its design supposedly symbolises the University's origins, expertise and associations. Its shape is inspired by the shape of an aeroplane wing symbolising the university's origin in the aviation industry. The head of the mace is engraved with zodiac symbols representing the university's contribution to astronomy and also contains the DNA double helix representing the biological sciences and microprocessor chips representing information and communications technology.[35]

Coat of arms

The University's coat of arms was granted in 1992. The shield is charged with an oak tree taken from the coat of arms of the former Hatfield Rural District, the constellation Perseus (containing the binary star Algol) and a representation of the letter "H" recalling the emblem of the former Hatfield Polytechnic. The crest, a Phoenix rising from an astral crown, represents the University's evolution from a technical college training apprentices for the aviation industry. The two harts supporting the shield represent the county of Hertfordshire, with the covered cups referring to A.S. Butler, who donated the land upon which the original campus was built. A scroll bears the motto "Seek Knowledge Throughout Life".[36]

The standard University logo comprises the University name and the UH symbol in a horizontal panel.[37] There is an exclusion zone equivalent to the height of the H in the logo above, below and to the right of the logo. The University have created an endorsed version of the logo to be used where legibility is an issue with the standard logo. It comprises just the University name in a horizontal panel.[5] Although the University brands its logo in various colours, the standard colour is Hertfordshire Blue.[37]

Reputation

Current Rankings

Rankings
QS[39]
(2014/15, national)
67[38]
QS[39]
(2014/15, world)
701+
THE[41]
(2014/15, national)
44 [40]
THE[41]
(2014/15, world)
351-400
Complete[42]
(2015, national)
60
The Guardian[43]
(2015, national)
66
Times/Sunday Times[44]
(2015, national)
79

University of Hertfordshire ranks 351-400 among world universities by Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2014.[45] In another university ranking published by Times Higher Education (THE 100 Under 50 universities 2013), a global ranking of the top 100 world universities under 50 years old, University of Hertfordshire was placed 60th.[46] In another list of Times Higher Education released in 2014, Hertfordshire ranks 52nd in the top 100 most international universities in the world.[47]

As one of the UK's Modern universities, achieving university status after 1992, the university is currently ranked 42nd out of 67, by the Sunday Times University Guide, for modern university rankings.[48] The Sunday Times has ranked the university 15th place, out of the 19 universities, based in the south east of England.[48]

According to the National Student Survey the University of Hertfordshire has a score of 82 out of 100, for overall student satisfaction. This is below the national average of 85 out of 100.[49]

QAA and OIA

The last Quality Assurance Agency institutional audit for the University was in March 2009. The outcome was that "confidence can reasonably be placed in the soundness of the institution's present and likely future management of the academic standards of the awards that it offers"[6]

According to the complaint statistics, from the Office of the Independent Adjudicator, the university issued 69 completion of procedures letters in relation to student complaints, in 2013. This is below the band medium of 81, possibly suggesting greater student satisfaction when compared to university's of a similar size.[50] The OIA received 22 complaints in 2013. This is above the band medium of 18.5, possibly suggesting that more students are dissatisfied with the outcome of internal complaints procedure's, compared to university's of a similar size.[50]

The University has also never been named in an OIA annual report for a shortfall in practice, or a failure to comply with a recommendation set by the Adjudicator.

Facilities

Kaspar

Main article: Kaspar (robot)
Kaspar, short for Kinesics and Synchronisation in Personal Assistant Robotics, is a social robot at University of Hertfordshire

Kaspar, a social robot, has been designed by the University of Hertfordshire's Adaptive Systems Research Group (ASRG). The Kaspar project began in 2005, drawing upon previous researches to develop a social robot for engaging autistic children in a variety of play scenarios.The aim was to research whether interacting and communicating with Kaspar would help children with autism interact and communicate more easily with people. This is important because there is mounting evidence that early intervention for children with autism may change the child's development trajectory. Kaspar is a research tool with programmed responses adapted to be used by an autistic child in a safe, non-judgemental environment.[51] The Kaspar research has shown that robots may provide a safe and predictable tool for children with autism, that enables the children to learn social interaction and communication skills, addressing specific therapeutic and educational objectives (for example, being able to engage in direct eye-contact or shared eye-gaze), in an enjoyable play context.[52]

Bayfordbury Observatory

Situated approximately six miles from the main campus in Hatfield, Bayfordbury Observatory is one of the astronomical teaching observatories in the United Kingdom. The observatory has formed an integral part of the University of Hertfordshire's astronomy-related degree programmes since it opened in 1970 and is used by students from the first week of their degree through to their final year, when it can also be used for their final year projects.[53]

The seven optical telescopes at Bayfordbury campus allow students to observe detailed images of objects in space. They can be equipped with a variety of research-grade CCD cameras, high resolution spectrographs or high frame-rate video cameras. Moreover, the five newest telescopes are also able to be operated remotely, and students and staff can request observations via the internet and have images taken automatically when the weather allows. The 4.5-metre radio telescope and 3-dish 115-metre baseline interferometer allow a completely different view of the universe. These are connected to 21 cm line receivers, to detect the neutral hydrogen in the galaxy and extragalactic radio sources.[53]

Crush Radio

Crush Radio (formally known as Campus Radio Hatfield [CRH] CRUSH and more recently, Crush 1278) is the student radio station of the University of Hertfordshire.[54] Crush is run by students of the university along with amateurs from around the surrounding areas. Crush was the first campus radio, often called student radio, station in the UK. Crush was founded in 1960 under the name of CRH (Campus Radio Hatfield). After starting as a, so called, “pirate radio station” CRH was turned into a University Society of the University of Hertfordshire and was renamed Crush 1278 for it broadcast on 1278AM frequency. As Crush became more accessible, via the internet, the name was changed again to Crush Radio. In 2009 Crush as a society merged with the other media societies of the Students union and the University of Hertfordshire as one media society, though Crush still uses its own website and broadcasts over 1278AM frequency, however it stopped broadcasting on 1278AM after the move in September 2009, but restarted commencing February 2011. Crush Radio has been broadcasting since 1960. It broadcasts on AM frequency (1278) and also streams online.[55]

Uno bus

Main article: Uno (bus company)
Uno buses at St Albans in July 2010

Uno (formerly UniversityBus) is a bus service operated by the University of Hertfordshire,[56] serving members of the general public, and also its own students and staff, at a discounted rate. In 1992, the University of Hertfordshire wanted to create and provide a bus service to and from the University. Uno, previously known as UniversityBus, was created to provide student transport to the University from local areas; improve east-west travel across the county of Hertfordshire; and, to create new links between Hertfordshire and North London.

UniversityBus became Uno in 2005, a bus service not only for University staff and students but also the entire Hertfordshire community. The name ‘Uno’ stems from the University’s desire for this bus service to become everyone’s number one choice for travel. It provides student transport to the expanding university from local areas as well as improving east-west travel across Hertfordshire and has opened up new links from North London. Services have expanded rapidly as the University has closed outlying sites at Watford and Hertford and developed the new de Havilland Campus on the site of the former Hatfield Aerodrome. Other developments on this site, including business premises for companies such as Veolia, DHL and T-mobile have also provided passengers. Uno also operate urban bus networks in St Albans and Northampton, as well as a network of routes between Milton Keynes, Bedford and Flitwick for Cranfield University.[56]

Student life

The University of Hertfordshire Students' Union (UHSU) is the Students' Union for the University of Hertfordshire.[57] The Students’ Union Social Centre was opened in 1977.[58] The Hatfield Technical College’s management encouraged the establishment of a Student Representative Council (SRC) in 1982, to create a sense of unity and expand the social activities of its day students. The SRC was affiliated to the National Union of Students but initially restricted itself largely to social activities. After 1988 it began to campaign on issues such as improvements to the canteen, lifting the ban on religious or political activity within the then Hatfield Polytechnic, and for a formal students’ union. The sectarian ban was finally lifted in 1992 and a Union granted in 1995. However, the canteen continued to be an issue throughout the 2000s.

Notable alumni

Prominent alumni of the university and its predecessor organisations include government ministers, ambassadors, judges and alumni who have been influential in the fields of science, literature, music, sport, architecture and the visual arts. A more extensive list is given below.

John Cryer, Member of Parliament (MP) for Leyton and Wanstead attended University of Hertfordshire.
Richard Howitt, Member of the European Parliament for the Labour Party for the East of England holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Management Studies from University of Hertfordshire

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Annual Report 2011-12
  2. ^ "Key People". University of Hertfordshire website (Hatfield, Herts). 
  3. ^ a b "Student information". http://issuu.com/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 22 September 2014. 
  4. ^ Estates Vision University of Hertfordshire
  5. ^ a b c "The University of Hertfordshire logo". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 16 September 2014. 
  6. ^ a b http://www.qaa.ac.uk/en/ReviewsAndReports/Documents/University%20of%20Hertfordshire/University-of-Hertfordshire-IA-annex-09.pdf
  7. ^ a b "Reasons to choose the University of Hertfordshire". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 13 September 2014. 
  8. ^ a b "Schools of study". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 14 September 2014. 
  9. ^ "The de Havilland Aircraft Company". Geoffrey de Havilland (Hatfield). 1920. 
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  11. ^ "RAE 2008 results". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 14 September 2014. 
  12. ^ Tyler, Helen. "History of the University of Hertfordshire". www.ourhatfield.org.uk/. Our Hatfield. Retrieved 1 October 2014. 
  13. ^ a b "Tyler"
  14. ^ a b c d e f "History of the University of Hertfordshire". http://www.ourhatfield.org.uk/. Hertfordshire County Council. Retrieved 18 September 2014. 
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  17. ^ a b Brave Herts The Guardian, 23 September 2003
  18. ^ Corporate Plan HertsDirect
  19. ^ Case Study - University of Hertfordshire Law Court Building Breathing buildings
  20. ^ Elstree University Technical College HertsDirect
  21. ^ "The Watford University Technical College opened its doors today". Watford Observer (Newsquest (London) Ltd). 15 September 2014. Retrieved 17 September 2014. 
  22. ^ "History of the University of Hertfordshire". http://www.ourhatfield.org.uk. Hertfordshire County Council. Retrieved 11 September 2014. 
  23. ^ "Corporate Governance". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. 
  24. ^ Whitaker's Almanack 2012, p. 383
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  27. ^ SCONUL library design award for College Lane LRC - SCONUL
  28. ^ HIBT
  29. ^ http://bayfordbury.herts.ac.uk
  30. ^ https://www.sciencelearningcentres.org.uk/consortia/ce/our-venues/science-learning-centre/science-learning-centre-bayfordbury/
  31. ^ http://www.herts.ac.uk/research/hhsri/research-areas-hhsri/human-and-environmental-sciences/agriculture-biotechnology-environmental-sciences-geography/ecology/bayfordbury-field-station
  32. ^ "UH 2020 Estates Vision". https://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 1 October 2014. 
  33. ^ "Meridian House". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 1 October 2014. 
  34. ^ Christianson and Piggott, Academic Dress in the University of Hertfordshire, ISBN 978-1-898543-01-5; 2ed ISBN 1-905313-39-X
  35. ^ Martyn Pugh, Furniture - at Commission a Craftsman
  36. ^ Myth, Mystery and Materiality Futures, Winter 2010, p. 9
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  50. ^ a b http://www.oiahe.org.uk/media/93652/university_of_hertfordshire_2013_annual_letter.pdf
  51. ^ "Robot at Hertfordshire University aids autistic children". http://www.bbc.co.uk/. BBC. Retrieved 26 September 2014. 
  52. ^ "Developing KASPAR". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 14 September 2014. 
  53. ^ a b "About the Observatory". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 14 September 2014. 
  54. ^ "Crush - University of Hertfordshire". http://www.studentradio.org.uk/. The Student Radio Association Ltd. Retrieved 16 September 2014. 
  55. ^ "Radion". http://hertfordshire.su/. Hertfordshire Students' Union. Retrieved 16 September 2014. 
  56. ^ a b "Uno Buses". http://www.herts.ac.uk/. University of Hertfordshire. Retrieved 16 September 2014. 
  57. ^ "Hertfordshire Students' Union". http://www.hertfordshire.su/. Hertfordshire Students' Union. Retrieved 13 September 2014. 
  58. ^ "History of the University of Hertfordshire". http://www.ourhatfield.org.uk/. Hertfordshire County Council. Retrieved 16 September 2014. 

External links

Coordinates: 51°45′12″N 0°14′38″W / 51.75333°N 0.24389°W / 51.75333; -0.24389