Welcome to the reference guide for the University of Derby. Here, you will find information about this university so you can decide whether it is the right institute for you to launch a successful career. Read on to discover popular courses, accommodation details and additional information.

You will undoubtedly have a list of universities if you are nearly finished with your A-Levels, or are looking to develop your education as a mature student. This guide will help you gain a better insight into student life at the university. It will also show you how you can make the most out of your college education if you choose this leading educational institute.

Overview of the University of Derby

Previously known as Derby College, the University of Derby is located in Derby City, which is situated in the centre of the UK. Its central location makes it easy to access other popular sites and cities in the UK, such as London. 

Derby city centre is a welcoming and safe place with a diverse community. There are plenty of opportunities for local and international students to explore the local sites and experience British culture.

According to the Guardian University Guide 2023, the University of Derby is ranked within the top 50 universities in the UK. The Guardian University Guide focuses on aspects like teaching and future job prospects. The university strives to ensure that every student receives a high standard of education, irrespective of their background or age.

The university is ranked first in the UK for welcoming international students and second for the quality of accommodation. The university provides real-world learning so students may be prepared for working life when they graduate. There is a strong focus on both academic research and industry experience at the university.

History of Derby University

Teaching at the institution initially began in 1851 when it was a Diocesan establishment. In 1856, the Derby Diocesan Institution for the Training of Schoolmistresses was established, and it thrived as an educational provider for more than 120 years.

In 1972, there was a split between the two colleges that were operational at Kedleston Road at the time. It was a mutual decision by the two colleges, and the Derby College of Art and Technology was created as a result. In 1977, the institution for schoolmistresses merged with another college to form the Lonsdale College of Higher Learning.

Over the years, the university advanced into a modern, innovative college and education provider. In 1992, the Derby Diocesan institution gained university status, and in 2016, the university established a new campus in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. The main campus of the university and the Chesterfield Campus now deliver a high-quality education for all students.

What is the address of the University of Derby?

The university has two sites, and the address of the Derby Campus is:

University of Derby
Kedleston Road
DE22 1GB

The address of the Chesterfield Campus is:

University of Derby
St Helena
Sheffield Road

Map of the University of Derby

The following is a map of the University of Derby:

How to get to the University of Derby

Home to some of the leading companies in the world, like Toyota, Rolls Royce, and Bombardier, Derby is in a great location. The city has good transport links to other sites and cities in the country. 

It is easily accessible by road, train or air services, as it is located in the centre of the UK. You can travel to the university from East Midlands, Birmingham, London Heathrow and Manchester airports.

The University of Derby’s main campus is in the city centre. The closest airport to the Derby Campus is East Midlands Airport which takes only 20 minutes to travel by road. You can take the Skylink bus services from the airport to Derby city centre and a taxi from there to your accommodation.

Hotels near The University of Derby

If you are visiting the University of Derby and looking for accommodation, there are many hotels located near the institution. The following are popular choices:

  • The Dovecliff Hall Hotel
  • The Morley Hayes Hotel
  • Georgian House Hotel
  • Cathedral Quarter Hotel

The accommodation that ideally suits your budget and preferences can be found using various travel sites. The map below is also available for your convenience:


What are the top courses at Derby University?

After gaining university status, the university progressed to offer more than 300 courses, and there are currently about 34,000 students studying at the institution. Like other universities, you can enrol in short courses, undergraduate degrees and postgraduate programmes that cover most academic and business subjects.

Local students, as well as those from other locations in the world, can research courses and choose to do their education part-time, full-time or online. Studying part-time or online is a popular option for mature students who may currently be employed. Bachelor’s and master’s programmes are available in the following disciplines:

  • Arts, design and media
  • Business and management (Derby business school)
  • Information technology and computer science (including Msc Big Data Analytics)
  • Engineering
  • Environment and agriculture
  • Humanities
  • Law
  • Medicine and health (including nursing, mental health and occupational therapy)
  • Natural sciences and mathematics
  • Social sciences (ranked Top 30 by The Guardian University Guide 2023)

Derby Business School

Derby Business School became the most recent business school to be awarded the Small Business Charter. This award recognises the high level of education and support that Derby Business School has provided for the local economy. It also acknowledges work done to develop the entrepreneurial skills of students. 

Markeaton Street

Markeaton Street is where students research computing, engineering and mathematics, as well as art, design, media and performing arts. Just a 15-minute walk from Kedleston Road, Markeaton Street also includes the STEM Centre and Chandos Pole Street building sites. 

Britannia Mill

Britannia Mill is located close to Markeaton Street. It was previously a textile mill, and it has been restored to a facility for activities like fine art, screen printing and dance. Britannia Mill also has a research library and is equipped with the latest technology to provide real-world learning and prepare you for working life.

School of Law and Social Sciences

The School of Law and Social Sciences is based at One Friar Gate Square. This building is located in Derby city centre, and students enrolled here have access to specialist training facilities, library facilities, spacious learning areas and the Blends Cafe, which belongs to the Student Union.

One Friar Gate Square

One Friar Gate Square is within walking distance from the centre of Derby City and relatively close to the Kedleston Road site. Courses taught at this self-contained college include law, social sciences, policing and criminology. Students can also study education modules in forensic psychology at One Friar Square Gate.

Where is the Derby Students Union?

The student union is located at the Derby campus, which is on Kedleston Road. The students at the union organise various events such as outdoor activities, sports teams, societies and fun nights out. They also offer advice on various matters, and they can organise campaigns for change.

You can contact the president or a vice president at the Kedleston road site for practical help. Although the union is independent of the university, the university works closely with the union to ensure that students have the best possible university experience.

What are the best Derby student nights?

Derby is a fairly small city which has been awarded Purple Flag status. This means that the city has officially been recognised as a safe place in the evening and the nighttime. The following list shows where the best student nights are:

  • Monday: Mosh is a popular nightclub which is within walking distance of the university.
  • Tuesday: Although the Hideout is open every night of the week, students often go there on a Tuesday night to enjoy cocktails and live sports.
  • Wednesday: Popworld is the place to be on a Wednesday night, with excellent drink specials on offer.
  • Thursday: Pub quizzes and Bingo happen at The Bless on a Thursday night.
  • Friday: Moo Moo is a popular Friday nightclub with 3 dance floors.
  • Saturday: Fever is a busy nightclub that has 3 floors with 3 different rooms of music.

Where are the best student pubs in Derby?

Derby has many things to offer, an exciting range of pubs being one of them. There are a lot of options to choose from, and pubs are located throughout the city centre. The following is a list of some of the best pubs in Derby:

  • The Friary
  • Walkabout
  • The Hairy Dog
  • The Honeycomb
  • The White Horse

After first arriving in Derby, it can take some time to find your favourite pubs. Your friends and other students at the university may already know their preferred pubs and recommend the best options.

Where are the best places to eat for students in Derby?

Derby students always enjoy going out in the city for a meal and meeting with friends. The places to eat are some of the best in the UK, and the list below includes some of them:

  • Vedi: If you are health conscious and enjoy plant-based foods, then Vedi is an ideal place to eat. You can choose from a wide range of vegan food, including vegan burgers, salad bowls, homemade soup and smoothie bowls.
  • Annie’s Burger Shack: Annie’s offers American-style burgers, which are available as meaty or 100% vegan.
  • The Standing Order: A range of affordable food options are available at The Standing Order, including burgers, breakfasts, pizza and a number of vegan options.
  • BEAR: Located in Iron Gate, BEAR is a popular cafe that offers everything from eggs benedict and all-American pancakes for breakfast to burgers and pizzas later in the evenings.

What are the Halls of Residence for the University of Derby?

The University of Derby offers some of the best university housing in the UK and Ireland. Recent data from the Global Student Living Index 2022 rated the University of Derby halls of residence as the best university housing (UK and Ireland) and best moving-in experience (UK and Ireland). The Global Student Living Index is an experience survey which is entirely based on feedback from home and international students. 

Students from local areas as well as students from other places in the world, can stay in rooms to suit their preferences. There is a wide range of student accommodation, including standard, single, double, studio and en suite rooms.

The halls offer a great place for students to make friends and learn to live independently. The university is a second home for international students who will have an exciting opportunity to experience a new culture.

Most first-year students live in the halls, which are a perfect place to stay during your time at university. You can choose a room in one of the following halls:

  • Agard Court
  • Darley Bank
  • Flamsteed Court
  • Nunnery Court
  • Peak Court
  • Princess Alice Court
  • St Christopher’s Court

Living in the halls gives you a chance to make the most out of student life and enjoy the social space it has to offer. University halls also offer a number of additional benefits, such as free Wi-Fi, laundry and washing machines, nighttime security and a fast and effective maintenance service.

What famous people went to Derby University?

A number of well-known people graduated from the University of Derby. The following is a list of famous graduates who attended the University and went on to do great things:

  • Paul Cummins – internationally acclaimed artist
  • Khumbo Kachali – former vice president of Malawi
  • Lucy Spraggan – English singer-songwriter
  • Devon Malcolm – former English cricketer
  • Idris Khan – British artist based in London
  • Carl Tighe – British writer and professor of creative writing

The University of Derby offers a wide range of qualifications, from engineering to nursing, business to arts, and medical health care to science, so you will find a course to help start your career.

Top Derby Students Discounts

It can be difficult to plan your budget and manage your money while studying at university. Fortunately, there are various student discounts available at stores in and around the city, including the following:

  • Schuh: Located in the city centre, Schuh offers 10% off all footwear, including trainers and boots.
  • Burton: Situated on Victoria Street, Burton offers 10% off menswear, including formal clothes, shirts, and shoes.
  • Accessorize: You can buy affordable jewellery, bags, shoes, and accessories and get 10% off at Accessorize. 
  • Pizza Express: Sign up for free with Unidays and get 30% off pizzas from Pizza Express.
  • All Saints: Students get 15% off menswear, womenswear, footwear, and accessories at All Saints.

For more top discounts for students check out these stores:

Popular Questions about the University of Derby

Is the University of Derby a good university?

The University of Derby is good because it is highly ranked by current students. This university is an excellent choice because it has a strong reputation, and graduates are sought after by employers.

Is it difficult to get into the University of Derby?

The acceptance rate of the University of Derby is 85%. Students are required to meet the necessary criteria. It is advisable to obtain a decent percentage of 70% or higher at high school for most undergraduate courses. If you are an international student, an early application is recommended as the policy is generally first come, first served.

Does the university have a high rank in the UK?

As mentioned, the Guardian University Guide ranked the University of Derby within the top 50 in the UK. 

What is the University of Derby best known for?

The university is best known for welcoming international students and is ranked second in the UK for the quality of accommodation. Also, it is renowned for providing students with academic education and industry experience to ensure they develop real-world skills that employers are looking for.

Summary of the University of Derby

The University of Derby is an excellent place for students to earn their qualifications and enjoy their university experience. Whether you are a local or international student, you will find accommodation that suits your budget and needs at the halls of residence. 

Courses at the university cover most academic subjects, so you can find a qualification that ideally suits you. The university combines expert teaching with industry-related education to ensure you gain real-world skills. Student life is exciting, and there are many places to visit. 

Looking for another university? Check out our guides below: