Which Are the Best Universities in South Wales?


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There’s a total of eight universities across Wales, and some of the very best ones of those are in South Wales. Whether you live in one of the major cities along the country’s south coast or in a seaside town like Port Talbot or Barry, there are some fantastic options for either yourself or your children when it comes to higher education in the region. Here we take a closer look at all five universities in South Wales, and where they rank in this corner of the country.

1. Cardiff University

Founded back in 1883, Cardiff University tops the list of universities in South Wales. As the country’s largest higher education institution, it has a superb reputation around the world and lies in the heart of the vibrant Welsh capital. With more than 30,000 students, Cardiff University offers more than 300 degree programmes, with a large portion of these available to study in the Welsh language. The uni has a total of 20 schools, with more than half of these in the top ten for their subject within the UK. Cardiff is also brilliant for all-round student life, boasting over 200 clubs and societies to maximise the extra-curricular experience.

2. Swansea University

As the second largest city in the country, Swansea also has one of the most popular South Wales universities. Around 20,000 students attend Swansea University each year, which celebrated its centenary in 2020. The uni has two campuses within Swansea Bay. Singleton Park is surrounded by picturesque gardens and parkland a stone’s throw from the sea, while the newer Bay Campus lies right on the beachfront. Together they offer more than 50 degree courses, along with nearly 200 societies and sports clubs. Little more than six miles from our Chapel Fields development, Swansea University is also renowned for investing a lot of time and money into research.

3. Cardiff Metropolitan University

Only a few miles from our Maes Y Deri site, Cardiff Metropolitan University is another excellent option within the Welsh capital. It’s smaller than its neighbour with around 10,000 students, but actually traces its roots back further to 1865 as the Cardiff School of Art. Whether you’re interested in undergraduate, postgraduate, research or enterprise opportunities, the art and design school remains the most prestigious element of Cardiff Met to this day. The university has five academic schools in total, along with four campuses all close to the centre of Cardiff. The National Indoor Athletics Centre, the National Lawn Tennis Association Centre and a fully-equipped sports centre are all appealing features.

4. University of South Wales

Established in 2013 as the result of a merger between the University of Glamorgan and the University of Wales Newport, the University of South Wales is spread out between Cardiff, Newport and Pontypridd. When it was formed, the university had the UK’s sixth-largest student population with 33,500. Boasting high employment rates, the uni prides itself on preparing students for the working world. Less than seven miles south of our Hanbury Locks development in Cwmbran, it has also become known for its computing prowess after being named Cyber University of the Year in the 2019 National Cyber Awards.

5. University of Wales Trinity Saint David

Another university which lends a strong focus to future employment prospects, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) was founded in a 2010 merger between the two oldest universities in Wales – Trinity University College and the University of Wales, Lampeter. UWTSD has three main campuses in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Swansea, while also offering the opportunity to study abroad through its global connections.