Who We Are

Founded in 1843 as the Sheffield School of Design, Sheffield Hallam has exercised a powerful impact on the city, region, nation and world. Today we are one of the UK’s largest and most diverse universities: a community of more than 30,000 students, 4,000 staff and more than 200,000 alumni around the world.  

Our students

The strength of our student cohort is in its diversity - matched by our commitment as a university to providing opportunity:

  • Around 25,000 are undergraduate, 6,000 postgraduate
  • Around 40% come from within 25 miles of the university
  • Around 10% are international students
  • 97% are from state schools or colleges
  • 23% are from low participation neighbourhoods - (national average is 12%)
  • In 2019/20, 1,300 new students were enrolled from low participation neighbourhoods - the most of any higher education provider in the country

Our teaching

Our committed staff provide award-winning teaching and student support for our diverse population of students. We were named University of the Year for Teaching Quality by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020. 

We provide our students with a curriculum designed for collaboration and cross-disciplinary learning, courses which are designed with industry experts, embedded work experience opportunities, digital skills pathways, and placement years. This includes a guarantee that all of our students will gain a placement during their degree through our award-winning Highly Skilled Employability strategy.  

This commitment to applied learning and teaching means:

  • We are one of the biggest trainers of healthcare staff for the NHS in the country
  • We train around 1,000 teachers a year (across degree stages) - with around 600 entering the workforce each year (60% of which in Sheffield City Region)
  • We are home to the largest modern business school in the country, with more than 7,000 students from 100 countries, studying at five locations around the globe.
  • Our National Centre of Excellence for Degree Apprenticeships has the biggest portfolio of degree apprenticeships in the UK
  • We provide around 14,500 health and social care placements a year with local NHS institutions and more than 4,500 per year in education settings
  • 96% of students are in work or further study 15 months after graduating and 73% are in Highly Skilled Employment, above the sector average (Graduate Outcomes Survey 2017-18)
  • Student satisfaction score of 82% (National Student Survey
  • Silver award from the government's Teaching Excellence Framework
  • In top 10 European universities for both student engagement and environment by the Times Higher Education Europe Teaching Rankings 2018
  • Five stars in the QS Star rating, achieving top marks in the categories of teaching, employability, facilities, innovation and inclusiveness

Our research

Our research and innovation work is characterised by a focus on real-world impact. Working across disciplines in world-class facilities, our academics tackle challenges facing society today.

Our research focuses on three key themes: driving future economies, enabling healthier lives and building stronger communities. We have an international reputation in areas such as materials science, art and design, sports science and engineering, biomedicine, and economic and social research – all delivered through our research institutes. This contributes to our standing in the Research Excellence Framework (REF):

  • In REF 2014, 65% of our research submitted was rated world-class or internationally excellent (REF)
  • Ranked top 5 of all UK modern universities that submitted more than one research area

Our place

As a university we are very proud of our contribution to our place - locally, nationally and internationally. 

This commitment to place - and with it, opportunity - means we are a leader in widening access to higher education to students from disadvantaged and under-represented backgrounds.

  • We have admitted more students from neighbourhoods with historically low numbers going to university than any other provider in the UK for years in a row
  • 53% of our students are the first in their family to attend university
  • Our widening participation team works with more than 1,100 educational settings and engages with more than 60,000 young people in our region every year
  • Alongside the University of Sheffield, we run the Higher Education Progression Partnership South Yorkshire (HeppSY), to support young people most at risk of missing out on higher education

Visit our regional hub to find out more about our commitment to our region.

Whilst the university is grounded in its city and region, we are also proud of our global outlook. 

  • Our global community of international students, staff and partnerships spans 120 countries
  • We have partnerships with more than 100 universities in countries around the world
  • In 2019, we announced our first formal strategic international partnership with La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. This provides international learning experiences, collaborative research opportunities and sharing of good practice and approaches to higher education across borders.


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