University of Reading
The University of Reading is a public university located in Reading, Berkshire, United Kingdom. It was established in 1892 as University College, Reading and received its Royal Charter in 1926 from King George V. It was the only university to receive its charter between the two world wars and is therefore a red brick university.
Reading is ranked as one of the top 200 universities in the world. It is ranked 156th in the latest 2015 QS World University Rankings, its highest ever position in the ranking. It is also one of the UK’s leading research-intensive universities. It is based on three (formerly four) campuses in, and around, the town of Reading.
The 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), coordinated by the HEFCE, placed the University 27th out of 154 institutions in the UK for Research Power, and 19th for Research Intensity. In total, 98% of the University’s research is labelled as ‘internationally recognised’, 78% as ‘internationally excellent and 27% as ‘world leading’.
Departments in the University have been awarded the biannual Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education four times: in 1998, in the Humanities, Social Sciences and Law category, for work on Shakespeare; in 2005, in the Environment category; in 2008, again in Humanities, Social Sciences and Law; and in 2011, for “teaching and design applications in typography, through print and new technologies” in the Arts.
Reading was the first university to win a Queen’s Award for Export Achievement, in 1989.
The School of Agriculture Policy and Development was ranked top in the UK and 11th in the world, according to the QS classification of universities by subject.
Reading University Students’ Union (RUSU) is the affiliated student organisation which represents the students’ interests. The university also has a number of Junior Common Rooms that are linked to the Students’ Union. The Students’ Union has been the launch pad for many political careers including Penny Mordaunt (MP for Portsmouth North), who was the 1994–5 President of the Students’ Union.
The Students’ Union runs the student radio station Junction11 Radio, an online student radio station. It also publishes Spark*, a newspaper aimed at the student population of the University, which is published fortnightly during term-time only and award winning student television station RU:ON.
The union provides a free advice service to students, and facilitates over 160 different activities for students to get involved in. The Students’ Union building on Whiteknights Campus contains a 2000 capacity venue called 3sixty, two bars, and a number of retail outlets.