Location: Penryn, Cornwall
Popular courses: English, History, Biosciences, Politics, Geography, Geology, Renewable Energy, Mining Engineering
Satisfaction: The University of Exeter Cornwall Campus beats every other university in the UK for student satisfaction
Russell Group University status: Yes
Also on campus: Penryn Campus is shared with Falmouth University which creates a vibrant environment
Student's Union: FXU
Applications per place: 6.5
Men:women ratio: 47:53
For more information about financial aid, scholarships, majors, study abroad, and average test scores, visit The University of Exeter's website for the Penryn campus at http://www.exeter.ac.uk/cornwa...
Why Choose Exeter Cornwall?
“I was really drawn to the creativity of the place. Sharing the campus with Falmouth University means that there is lots of music and art and drama going on, and that really appealed to me. The Exeter Cornwall Campus is more unique and interesting than anywhere else I looked at. I actually transferred here after originally applying to the main Exeter Campus because I thought I’d get lost among the crowd. Here there is always a friendly face!”
“I was sold on the open day- the sun was shining, the students were wandering around barefoot and with surfboards, I was like, this is the life for me! And it’s completely lived up to my expectations- where else can you go to a lecture and then be on the beach within half an hour? I’m learning to paddleboard, I’ve started surfing, and when it’s sunny it’s so great to go and chill at Gylly. I feel at home here, why would you want to be anywhere else?”
“If I’m honest I was a bit hesitant about coming to Falmouth, I got referred here after applying to the Exeter Campus. But it was the BEST thing that has ever happened to me! I’ve made lifelong friends and it’s the experience of a life time. The teaching is fantastic and my lecturers are literally amazing, I love it from both an academic and social perspective. Everyone should come!”
Credit to Sophie Rawe for the photo.
“The University of Exeter (Cornwall Campus) provides endless opportunities to gain experience in your selected field of study and to travel abroad. Many courses offer a year abroad to countries including America and Canada, and the university will also help students find work and internships in other countries”.
“We work alongside the Falmouth University, so we’re able to mix our academic courses with their creative resources, as well as making new friends with people from a wide range of studies and backgrounds”
“It’s a great location! We study in the quiet town of Penryn but are only a short bus or train ride away from the main towns of Falmouth and Truro. And the beaches, of course!”
“There is lots of wildlife to see on campus and down on the beach. The rock pools are filled with exotic sea-life, including anemones and star fish! The birds on campus are very diverse – pied wagtails, house martins and jays are just some that you might see flying overhead whilst walking around the Student Village”
“The Stannary is amazing, this is our student venue and it holds great events such as the Snow Ball, live artist performances like Bondax, and there are cheap drinks every Thursday. I wouldn’t get through uni without it.”
“There are so many nice places to go in town- like Beerwolf if you fancy a quiet drink and a browse of a book, the Shed for some classy cocktails, or Club I for something a little bit less classy!”
"“Let’s be honest... it rains, and quite a lot! It’s not all sunny skies and hot days in Falmouth, you’re bound to be visited by the rain- which is often horizontal so most attempts to stay dry are foiled. It’s worth it for the days that are beautiful though, and summer is like being Australia!”"
"The nearest Zara is in Exeter...a three-hour train journey away! While I love exploring Falmouth's eclectic mix of quirky, individual stores, I do miss the high street chains that can be enjoyed in other towns. This has massively fueled my online shopping addiction - but I don't have much choice!"
"Club I is the only club in town. I have a love-hate relationship with the place and its' sticky carpets and cheap shots. It can get a little same-ish, but there are dozens of bars and pubs in town…we have tried exploring them, but almost always end up in Club I anyway, because we secretly love their cheesy music, which they play on loop."
New Collegiette on Campus
“I was so nervous when I first got to Uni, but within a few minutes of meeting my flatmates I already felt at home. I love that the accommodation is shared by Exeter and Falmouth students because you get such a mix of personalities and subjects. I had a dancer, an artist, and a zoologist in my flat! There were eight of us in our flat and I think that most people had the same- it’s a perfect amount of people, there’s always someone at home to have a chat with and you can all go out together."
“Freshers is great at the Exeter Cornwall Campus, there are amazing events like the Pirate Party and the Freshers Ball, but you’ve also got chilled nights. I loved the first weekend when everyone went to The Stannary for drinks, and you just meet so many people. There were ambassadors who were shoving groups of us together to get us all talking and this was actually so good because I met some of my best friends that way!"
"The transformation doesn’t only include those ‘grown-up’ responsibilities that accompany living away from home, such as the discovery that freezing bread makes it stop going mouldy and being faced with the harsh truth that putting on a duvet cover can be paralleled with the adventures of Indiana Jones."
"I can now drink a whole pint in 15 seconds (thanks to the guidance of some well-practiced second years chanting “DOWN IT FRESHER!”), play significant amounts of pool (and actually win), have a night out in town for just £7, make more late night trips to the 24-hour Asda for junk food cravings than I ever have before, nap for several hours in between lectures (despite never having needed naps before), and meet more people in just a few months than I thought I could meet in ten years."
"Putting aside the comedic experiences of being a fresher for a moment, a piece of perhaps quite serious advice to all prospective students is, enjoy every up and down in your first months as a ‘fresher’ (you will hear this a lot), it will one of the best and most important transformations of your life. You may get homesick from time to time, and you may feel as if those essay deadlines will kill you time to time also, but you will overcome these downs through the company of your peers. Most importantly, a factor often overlooked by articles which seem to consider only the trivial aspects of being a student (oh wait, that might be me…), you will be faced with a wonderful realisation: studying a subject in which you find enthusiasm will provide you with a vision of your future, and, without being too cheesy, bring you a big step closer to your dreams."
All About Academics
"As a first year I wasn’t really expecting to have as much work as I did and I didn’t really come to terms with it, in fact I still haven’t. For me it is the endless reading, which I have to expect being an English student. But if I organise my time I can get my work done eventually, it just takes a lot of dedication and zero procrastination. I will admit, there are weeks where I never get all the reading done due to my social life or Netflix getting in the way, because lets face it they are a lot more desirable than sitting at a desk staring at endless amounts of pages for a day."
"I have about 4 essays per term to write which are about 1000 words to 2000 each, which isn't much considering that I know other students on different courses who have to write 5000 word essays which would probably destroy my brain. It does sound odd, but I really enjoy writing essays, it is a nice break from reading and I definitely get more engaged with what I am doing when I am writing."
"Being a first class procrastinator I have to find the perfect place to work, and for most people being at home is just too distracting, so the best refuge is the library. It sounds a bit odd, but I love our library, the new Exchange building on campus is fantastically designed, with enough natural light getting in so the many students don’t go mad in those dark solitary corners. It is a fantastic space to work on your own or with a group of people. The best time is weekends and late at night, simply because there is hardly anyone there which creates such a peaceful space to work, and there is always a chance to nab the deliciously comfy sofas in the corner."
Learn from the Best
"It's really worth going to office hours - a little one on one time with your tutor can really benefit your mark!"
"I love being able to select my own modules, it allows me to study things which I am truly interested in."
"Because the campus is so small, I feel that I have a really good relationship with all of the lecturers - even those who have never taught me!"
"The lecturers and tutors you have whilst studying here really depend upon which course you take. However, one thing which all staff do have in common is their desire to help you out whenever you need it – you can email them or go to see them during office hours for extra help with an essay or project. Due to the small size of our campus, the lecturers know all of their students individually, and there is a really pleasant relationship between students and staff. This makes asking for help much easier, and it is nice to be able to say hi to your tutors when you see them around campus!"
"Our campus offers a very flexible programme, meaning that you can often combine modules from different core subjects, which allows you to focus on varied areas of interest. If you decide on a joint honors degree programme, you will take an equal number of modules from each course. Flexible honors allows much more fluidity, and you do not have to attend core modules. Alternatively, you can take a single course and still attnd one module from a different subject area!"
"Depending on your course, you will have to gain a certain number of credits each year which are earned by taking modules (some modules are worth more credits than others). Each course has some compulsory modules, which everybody must take, and some selective modules – usually these are second and third year options. The compulsory modules lay down the basics, teaching you everything you will need to know in order to successfully complete your degree. Selective modules are chosen at the end of each academic year, and allow you to delve into your specific areas of interest in a little more detail. The third term is set aside just for examinations, meaning that if you don't have many exams, you get to enjoy the lovely weather at that time of year!"
"While some subjects are essay-based, with little in the way of exams, others are the opposite. The more scientific courses usually have more practical classes, while humanities often have seminars; more informal than lectures, these sessions allow for an open discussion of the topic you have been studying."
"One thing that all courses have in common is that your final grade is a combination of your marks from second and third year, in addition to your dissertation grade. This means that your first year grade doesn’t count, allowing you to get to grips with your workload, and simply being at university, without too much pressure academically!"
Interests & Involvement
"You’re a student. You like eating, sleeping, partying, sleeping, partying, eating. However, your university experience can involve more than this and luckily extra-curricular activities are an important part of life at the Exeter Cornwall Campus. A key reason for this is the unique environment in which we live. The presence of the sea mere minutes away has led to the prominence of societies such as surfing, sea swimming, snorkeling, and sailing- pretty much anything based on or around water can be tried here! There are many non-water clubs available as well! Harry Potter fans should definitely join Quidditch club: a society with great socials such as the Yule Ball, and of course the chance to learn muggle Quidditch, so get your brooms out and give it a go!"
"Going to choir is just like going to hang out with a group of friends, except you’re singing and performing some fab songs at the same time."
"I feel the subject of societies cannot be addressed without mentioning Zombie Society: Zombies. Humans. A fight for survival. Nerf guns. Socks. If any of these words intrigue you, then Zombie society is the place to be."
"With over 80 clubs and societies on offer, the few mentioned here barely scratch the surface of the opportunities available. All information about extra-curricular clubs; whether you want to join a society, or set up your own, can be found on the FXU website, or you could pop into the office. Societies are a great way to meet like minded people, to cultivate a passion of yours or try something completely new. University is the time to be adventurous and do everything you’ve ever wanted to do- so give it all a go!"
Sport is a pretty large part of the clubs and societies on Campus, offering a diverse range of activities for everyone, from Football to Quidditch! There is always something going on and plenty to get your teeth into, and definitely the opportunity to try new things and meet new people, even if you are not the sporty type, it is always good to give it a go.
The sports also create a big social atmosphere, especially with the annual Bottle Match between CSM (Camborne School of Mines) who also share our campus and the Royal College of Mines in London. These rugby matches have been going on since 1902 and are always a special occasion for the campus, involving great team spirit and a lot of alcohol!
The FXU, our union has a great initiative to get everyone into sport; this is called ‘Flexi’. Students pay £5 to join for the year and get discounted and even free introductory classes for unusual and usually quite expensive sports, such as archery, pole fitness and surfing. It is really great if you want to try a whole bunch of different things for free!
The diverse nature of activities is perhaps what it the best and last year the Campus’ very first Quidditch team was introduced and then spawned a Harry Potter society alongside it. The team has done very well in competitions, recently coming Third place in the Highlander Cup!
So, all in all there is definitely something for everyone down here and sport is an opportunity to take advantage of the glorious place in which the Cornwall Campus is located, so why not try a typical Cornish activity and get your surf on!
"There are a variety of different styles on campus. Some girls like to dress more edgy and go for vintage clothing as there are a lot of trendy boutiques and charity shops around Falmouth. Other girls like to dress more casual and choose something simple like jeans and a jumper."
“The atmosphere and feel of the campus is a lot more laid back than being in a big city, so girls don’t really feel like they have to dress up or wear make up all the time, especially when dressing for nights out”
"Penryn campus doesn’t offer a women’s studies programme, but the library has a wide variety of texts on feminism and gender studies that are very useful for humanities students."
"Penryn campus offers plenty of clubs and societies for women. Sports teams include ladies football, hockey, lacrosse and netball. Sports teams welcome girls of all abilities, who either want to be part of the team and play competitively or just come along and train for fun. Penryn campus also has a cheerleading club for women and does regular performances throughout the year."
In terms of societies, FXU now has a feminist society where women can engage in debate at discourse meetings as well as meet like-minded people.
"Feminism is about the equality of the sexes. FXU Feminist Society was set up last year to provide a community for all feminists on campus, where we can discuss feminist issues, partake in campaigns, raise money for feminist organisations and provide a support group for our members. We now have about 300 members! Join our Facebook page FXU Feminist Society to keep up to date with what's going on."
The male:female gender ration for Penryn campus is about 4:6 as certain courses tend to attract more women than men. Penryn campus is also shared with University College Falmouth which has many arts courses, such as textiles which is almost entirely made up of female students.
“The gender ratio makes the campus a very comfortable place for girls as there isn’t much of an aggressive ‘lad culture’ that can be found at other larger campuses”
Food & Drink
“ The Campus is individual in the sense that all university accommodation is self-catered. For some people, myself included, this detail was added to the list of assets that credited the university, for it brought with it full control over how, when and what I eat at mealtimes, which, having a small obsession with cookery before coming here, felt like a marvellous opportunity.”
“The Stannary is, by far, the biggest purveyor of hot meals on site, The Lower Stannary sells a selection of hot, seasonal foods, including a burger bar and jacket potato counter. They also have a delicious selection of salads from the deli counter, alongside a vast choice of drinks and tasty snacks that you might find on the shelves of an up-market coffee shop. In addition to this the kitchen regularly produce international foods, sometimes to celebrate high days and holidays. I really enjoy seeing what new dishes they have to offer, and have so far not been disappointed.”
“Koofi coffee shop is the main meeting place for catch-ups and coffee-dates on campus. They serve delicious coffees with quick and friendly service from barristas who are mostly fellow students at the university. Their pizzas – with posh-toppings and indulgence factor – are delicious! You can even mix it up and add toppings of your choice! My favourite, though, are the tasca toasted sandwiches!”
“The Compass coffee cart is a great place to go for refreshments while working in the library – their coffee is excellent and they also have a selection of snacks which really help to keep me going around deadline times!”
“The coffee machine in the lower Stannary cannot be forgotten! I bought a coffee from this machine earlier in the week, and, having become accustomed to the mediocrity of the coffee products created by the library coffee machine, I wasn’t expecting a great deal. However, on inserting my money and choosing my product I was taken on an extraordinary journey. (One that I didn’t exactly have the time for, given that I was already very late for my 9am seminar after a late night the night before). “Your ‘cappuccino’ will be ready in 1 minute and 20 seconds” began the countdown, which, alongside music, and flashing images of perfectly constructed cappucino’s with which professional barristas were shown to be creating perfectly formed ‘latte art’. I felt as though I had just bought a coffee from a space-ship, such was my experience of that magnificent machine!”
“I love the local business carts which come up to the university on different days! On Mondays, my course friend Maddy and I have become accustomed to indulging in an organic, homemade crumpet with Cornish brie, bacon and cranberry jam after our 9am lecture. On Thursdays the Falafel man comes to visit about which there is not much more to say than that they are absolutely delicious and you must try one.”
"When the weather is nice it's a relief to be able to spend some free time on the beach or out shopping. I enjoy going swimming with my friends and out for dinner."
"Not only does Falmouth have lots to offer in the way of shopping and attractions, including the Falmouth Aquarium and Jam Records, but also with a beach right on your doorstep, surfing and sea swimming are common activities for students. Of course, if you want to go further afield, Truro is merely a train ride away, with stores like Topshop, River Island and Waterstones. Of course, if it’s been a long week, sometimes staying on campus can be just as relaxing."
"There aren’t any sororities or fraternities on campus, but there are plenty of societies that form their own groups with just as impressive traditions and events. For example, on the 22nd of February, the varsity match between CSM (Cornwall School of Mining, Exeter University) and RSM (Royal School of Mining, Imperial College London) will provide a chance to demonstrate your school spirit. The affectionately named ‘Bottle Match’ is not only the second oldest varsity rugby match in the world, but includes opportunities to showcase men’s football, women’s and men’s hockey, squash and, as of 2010, netball."
"I definitely think that belonging to a flat and close-knit community makes you prone to peer pressure. When everyone else in your flat is going out and you hear them enjoying themselves it does sometimes make you consider dropping your other commitments and join in on the fun. Also when big events are held you may feel obliged to attend as to make the most of your time at University. Sometimes weekends are more fun when you're not excessively drinking but going out for a nice cocktail and chat."
"If you’re in the mood for a quiet cocktail or relaxing with friends, The Shed Restaurant and cocktail bar in Falmouth is open both weekdays and weekends. Offering a wide variety of classic cocktails and chasers, it offers an alternative to the likes of Toast and Mango’s."
"Alcohol usage can be pretty substantial in certain flats, but I wouldn’t say people are necessarily forced to drink. It can escalate naturally but if you don’t want to then there are plenty of other things you can do. It won’t stop you from participating and having a good time. Our flat has a “civilized wine night” which sadly ends up being the least civilized thing ever."
Alternatives to drinking can include pizza and movie nights, where people either end up crying behind a pillow over Insidious 2 or, if you’re not into horror movies, I’ve been informed that Love Actually can in fact be equally devastating, particularly when pushing the conversation towards a particular Joni Mitchell song...
“Don’t even go there. Seriously. But apart from the occasional crying, yeah, I agree, everyone gets so into movie nights, even mixed flats. The only real problem is deciding on a movie."
"There’s no pressure to drink. It’s a personal choice. If you don’t want to, don’t give in to peer pressure. But often, your friends will understand."
"Being close to the sea and the small town of Falmouth opens up a variety of alternatives to drinking. Chilling with friends at the beach is an obvious choice in the summer; and in the winter, you can explore all that Falmouth has to offer, including live music and games bars."
"You can come into contact with some drugs, but nobody’s ever been pressured to do any. I mean, there’s pot, you may see that around quite a bit and occasionally you may hear about other drugs but again, nobodies forced into it. I think mostly weed goes around most."
"No, personally I’ve never really come into contact with drug use. It’s mostly just alcohol."
"I think people tend to have a base group to go out with but might mix it up sometimes. Everyone’s quite friendly so it’s not difficult to meet new people."
"House parties during the week are very prevalent, whether in Falmouth or on campus. People are working most of the time though, so I wouldn’t say people go out that much on weekdays."
"Well, student night’s on a Thursday so when drinks are cheaper, you kind of forget about work the next day and go out anyway. You meet lots of people in town. There are lots of places to go too, I think. See a lot of first years in club I nowadays."
"With a mostly reliable bus schedule that stops at around 2:30 on student night and various student supported taxi firms in Falmouth and Penryn (e.g. Abacus and Falmouth taxis), getting around the local area is for the most part quite easy and relatively inexpensive. The only real issue mentioned was the weather, which, sadly, can’t be managed as easily as calling a cab."
"It’s pretty easy to get around at night, like the bus is cheap, taxi isn’t too bad and it’s more or less safe to walk if you have to. I would go out in groups though, just because nobody really likes walking home alone, especially at night when it’s both freezing and dark. It also makes a cab at the end of the night cheaper the more people you have."
"For first year students, there are a few options for University-owned accommodation available. There are two different sections of housing available on the edges of the campus: Glasney View and Glasney Parc, together forming Glasney Village. In these types of housing, each floor is separated into flats of around seven or eight single occupancy en-suite bedrooms and one large communal kitchen, complete with a television. Although not all students are required to live in university-owned accommodation in their first year, it is the most common choice and many people view it as a better way to meet people."
“I’m so glad that I decided to live on campus in my first year. I have gotten to know my flat mates so well and we have all become such good friends. It’s lovely knowing that some of your closest friends at university are literally next door to you!”.
"The bedrooms in Glasney Village are large; each with a double bed, two bedside tables, a wardrobe, a set of drawers, and a large desk space. In these bedrooms there is a large pin board covering one of the walls, perfect for pinning pictures and reminders on! All bedrooms are en-suite. There is an option to live in a shared bedroom: these bedrooms are also en-suite, have a set of bunk beds, and also have a large amount of desk space and storage. These rooms are available at a slightly cheaper rate than single occupancy bedrooms."
“I really love my bedroom! It was so easy to personalize. On my pin-board, I stuck pictures of my friends and family back home, and an enormous calendar to get me organized!”.
"Another type of student accommodation available to first year students is in ‘The Sidings’. The Sidings is a type of university-owned accommodation not situated on campus, but it is only a 10-15 minute walk, or a five minute bus journey away! The Sidings also includes en-suite bedrooms, with ample storage space and a communal kitchen and living space, complete with sofas and a television."
"I feel exretemely safe on campus. Each bedroom is equipped with a small safe, and both window and door locks. A key is required to access to the front door to each flat, so only people living in that flat are able to gain access. The campus has 24 hour security, who do regular patrols, circulating campus. Each flat is provided with the telephone number for the Campus Lodge, where there are members of staff 24 hours a day, so if we ever have any problems, we can just ring them and they’ll come straight down!"
"Although there aren’t any specific bonding activities between each flat, there are plenty of opportunities to bond with your new flatmates over the first week of University: Freshers’ week. The university hold events all day and in the evening over the first week or so; giving you plenty of opportunities to not only bond with your new flat mates, but also to get to know people on your course."
"In second and third year, while there is still the option for on-campus accommodation, most students opt to move to the nearby towns of Falmouth or Penryn. Falmouth is a popular area to live in as whilst it is only a 15 minute bus journey from campus, it is also home to a cinema, bars, restaurants and local pubs: perfect for student nights out! It's really fun to choose a house with the friends you've made in first year!"
The University of Exeter’s Cornwall Campus is a short walk away from the town of Penryn and a quick bus journey away from Falmouth. In Penryn there are various little shops that are cute for window shopping, but the majority are Fish and Chip takeaways (a must for Cornwall!) The best plan is to get the bus to Fal and take a stroll along the high street. Here there are various well known names including New Look amongst pasty shops, café’s and crafty places.
There are also too many restaurants to count; whether you want pub food, burritos, Mexican, Indian, Chinese, you name it and Falmouth has got it. Whilst we’re on the topic of the high street it’s also necessary to mention Club I- Falmouth’s only club. Although carpeted and pretty dated, this is where you will inevitably end up on a night out. If you have the strength to avoid it there is always Mango’s next door (a more chilled bar/restaurant) and other various pubs and bars nearby.
Even though Falmouth obviously existed before the Uni came along this doesn’t mean locals and students can’t get on. The two mix well in bringing diversity to the town, for example in enabling unique music and art projects to happen. So relating to this diversity, arguably the best thing about Falmouth and the Penryn Campus is the individuality of everyone; I doubt that any other Uni has such a mix of interests and courses or such a chilled vibe. Although quiet, if you delve a little deeper and investigate more, there are always things to be found off campus. Or if you’re really stuck for ideas, there’s obviously the beach. How many other Uni’s can boast a coastline in such close proximity to the campus?
So I asked a few people why it’s so good being at Uni here…
“The relaxed atmosphere makes it a nicer way of life… if you want to get away from studying for a while all you have to do is walk to the beach” Claire
“If like me you’re doing a degree based on ecology, then this is the perfect place- there’s so much wildlife around” Katie
“I love the interesting mix of courses here- you get the fashion people, scientists, artists…it makes for interesting personalities and conversations!’ Becky
HC's Complete College Guide: Exeter - Cornwall Campus
Do you have a way with words? Apply to write for Her Campus!