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Manchester Metropolitan University

Manchester Metropolitan University
Motto Many Arts, Many Skills
Established 1970 (as Manchester Polytechnic)
1992 (gained University status)
Type Public
Endowment £984,000(2011)[1]
Chancellor Dianne Thompson
Vice-Chancellor John Brooks
Students 37, 000[2]
Undergraduates 27,265[2]
Postgraduates 6,020[2]
Other students 200 FE[2]
Location Manchester, England, UK
53.47053, −2.23872
Campus All Saints, Hollings, Birley Fields, Crewe
Colours Blue, turquoise, burgundy, gold
Affiliations University Alliance
Association of Commonwealth Universities
Association of MBAs
Logo of the Manchester Metropolitan University

Manchester Metropolitan University, often referred to as 'MMU' and simply referred to as 'Man Met', is a British public university located in North West England, and was established in 1970 as 'Manchester Polytechnic', and gained University Status in 1992. Its headquarters and central campus are in the city of Manchester, and there are additional facilities in the county of Cheshire. The university has its roots in the Manchester Mechanics' Institution (1824) and the Manchester School of Design (1838).[3] It is the fifth largest university in the United Kingdom in terms of student numbers.

Teaching quality inspections place the university within the top twenty in the UK, according to The Complete University Guide.[4] Teaching standards have also been described as 'among the highest in the country' by the Quality Assurance Agency.[4] The university is ranked fourth of the new universities in attracting research funds from the Higher Education Funding Council for England.[4]

The university is an accredited member of the Association of MBAs, a member of the University Alliance, the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the North West Universities Association and the European University Association. The university is home to the Manchester School of Art, the Manchester School of Theatre and, in conjunction with the University of Manchester, the Manchester School of Architecture.


  • History 1
  • Campuses 2
    • All Saints Campus 2.1
    • Cheshire Campus 2.2
    • Birley Campus 2.3
  • Organisation 3
    • Governance 3.1
    • University structure 3.2
    • Finances 3.3
  • Academic profile 4
    • Reputation and rankings 4.1
    • Admissions 4.2
    • Research 4.3
  • Students' Union 5
  • International partnerships 6
  • Notable alumni 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9


The university developed from mergers of various colleges with various specialisms, including Technology, Art and Design, i.e. Manchester Mechanics' Institution (1824) and Manchester School of Design (1838). Later, Schools of Commerce (founded 1889), Education (f. 1878) and Domestic Science (f. 1880) were added along with colleges at Didsbury, Crewe, Alsager and the former Domestic and Trades College (f. 1911), latterly Hollings College. The painter L. S. Lowry attended Manchester School of Art in the years after the First World War where he was taught by the noted impressionist Adolphe Valette.[3] It became Manchester Polytechnic in 1970. On 1 January 1977, the polytechnic merged with the Didsbury College of Education and Hollings College, and on 1 January 1983 with City of Manchester College of Higher Education. In 1987 the institution became a founding member of the Northern Consortium. Having previously been a local authority institution, the polytechnic became a corporate body on 1 April 1989, as allowed by the terms of the Education Reform Act 1988.

It was granted university status as "Manchester Metropolitan University" by the Privy Council on 15 September 1992 under the provisions of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992. The university absorbed Crewe and Alsager College of Higher Education on 1 October 1992 and the Manchester School of Physiotherapy in 2004.[5]


Older buildings on the MMU Cheshire Alsager campus
The All Saints Building on the All Saints Campus, Chorlton-on-Medlock
The administration building of the Didsbury Campus

The university was previously located on seven sites, five in Manchester (All Saints, Aytoun, Didsbury, Elizabeth Gaskell, and Hollings) and two in Cheshire (Alsager and Crewe), and has rationalised its estate, reducing the number of sites to two. The university has moved the work of the Alsager campus to Crewe. The Aytoun campus closed in 2012 when a new Business School opened on the All Saints Campus. Since 2011, the university has been engaged in a £350 million investment programme involving the largest physical change to its estate since its foundation. In 2014 the Elizabeth Gaskell, Hollings and Didsbury campuses were closed and the faculties moved to All Saints and the new Birley campus[6]

All Saints Campus

Statue of John Dalton by William Theed outside the university's building in Chester Street

All Saints campus is the university's main campus.

The Faculty of Humanities, Languages and Social Science is split between the Geoffrey Manton and Mabel Tylecote buildings. The Geoffrey Manton Building accommodates the English, History and Economic History, Information and Communications, Politics and Philosophy, and Sociology departments. The Languages departments are housed in the Mabel Tylecote Building.[7]

The John Dalton Building, on Chester Street is the home of the Faculty of Science and Engineering.[8] It comprises four schools: the School of Healthcare Sciences, the School of Computing, Mathematics & Digital Technology, the School of Engineering, and the School of Science and The Environment. To the rear of the John Dalton Building is JD tower, housing the university's main science laboratories including IRM,[9] the Institute for Biomedical Research into Human Movement and Health.

The Manchester School of Art on the All Saints Campus is composed of four departments: The Manchester School of Architecture (operated jointly with the University of Manchester Faculty of Humanities); Department of Art; Department of Design; Department of Media.[10] The faculty houses the Holden Gallery which has a continuous programme of exhibitions and is open free to the public.[11] The university has invested in improving the Manchester School of Art building granting £35 million to facilitate three changes including: a new building for the faculty, refurbishment of the workshops and renovation of the studios. In 2014 the building was nominated for the Stirling Prize.[12][13]

New premises costing £75 million for the Faculty of Business and Law have been built on All Saints Campus and the Business School re-located to this building from the Aytoun Campus in 2012.[14] It will house more than 5,000 students and 250 staff.[15] The new building is an original architectural concept with three towers under a single glass roof. Green credentials are an integral part of the building's design which incorporates solar panels and heat pumps to power the building and a rain water recycling scheme.[15] The Manchester Law School is in the Sandra Burslem building which opened in 2003.

The university library, renamed the Sir Kenneth Green Library, is on the All Saints campus. It houses a number of special collections mainly relating to the fine and applied arts, like the Laura Seddon Greeting Card Collection, a collection of 32,000 Victorian and Edwardian greeting cards.[16] The library is in the All Saints Building where it occupies three floors. It was planned as a single central library in 1972 but after the mergers with the Didsbury College of Education and Hollings College it became a central library and administrative centre for seven library sites. From 1975 a catalogue was produced with the aid of the Birmingham Libraries Co-operative Mechanisation Project.[17] From 1992 the library was part of the Consortium of Academic Libraries in Manchester (CALIM) which was extended in 2002 to become NoWAL, the North West Academic Libraries.[18]

The John Dalton Tower and John Dalton West on the All Saints Campus

The Hollings Faculty offers undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in food, clothing, and hospitality studies and related fields. Formerly in Fallowfield, the faculty is now housed in the Righton Building on the All Saints campus, a former department store.

Cheshire Campus

The Faculty of Education is based on two campuses, the Cheshire campus at Crewe and the Birley Campus in Manchester, where it moved in 2014 from the former Didsbury campus.[19] It provides various routes leading to Qualified Teacher Status. MMU Cheshire is also home to the following academic departments: Business and Management Studies, Contemporary Arts, Exercise and Sport Science, Interdisciplinary Studies.[20]

Birley Campus

2014 saw the opening of a highly environmentally sustainable £140 million development situated on the Birley Fields site in Hulme, Manchester, creating a central location for the Faculties of Education and Health following the closure of the Didsbury and Elizabeth Gaskell campuses. Alongside the academic building there is student accommodation for up to 1200 students comprising ultra-modern, environmentally sustainable townhouses and traditional student apartments.




In common with most universities in the United Kingdom, Manchester Metropolitan University is headed formally by the Chancellor, currently Dianne Thompson CBE but led by the Vice-Chancellor, currently Professor John Brooks. There are two deputy Vice-Chancellors.

The University's Board of Governors is responsible for determining the educational character and mission of the University. It also falls to the Board of Governors to ensure that the University's resources are used in line with the University's Article of Government. It also safeguards the University's assets and approves the annual estimates of income and expenditure.[22]

The Board of Governors is responsible for broad policy but the Vice-Chancellor, along with the Executive and Directorate, is responsible for overall management, policy implementation, organisation, operations and direction of the University.[23]

University structure

The University is organised into eight faculties:

  • Manchester School of Art
  • Health, Psychology and Social Care
  • Humanities, Languages and Social Science
  • Science and Engineering
  • Business and Law
  • MMU Cheshire
  • Faculty of Education
  • Hollings Faculty

The Manchester School of Theatre is a drama school, which trains students to become professional actors. The course offered is a BA (Hons) in Acting. The school is a member of Drama UK, which means the course is a nationally acclaimed programme. Students who complete the course successfully are eligible for full Equity status. The school has links with many local theatres and television companies, such as Granada and the BBC. Graduates from the school of theatre include Amanda Burton, Steve Coogan, Richard Griffiths, Graham Fellows, Julie Walters and Burn Gorman.

In the session 2010/11, the University had over 35,000 students. The University employs 4,400 staff, comprising almost 1,500 full-time teaching staff, 700 part-time teaching staff and 2,200 support staff.[24]


In the financial year ended 31 July 2011, Manchester Metropolitan University had a total income of £248,028,000 (2009/10 - £243,606,000) and a total expenditure of £213,103,000 (2009/10 - £220,221,000).[24] The University's collects £106,857,000 from tuition fees and education contracts (2009/10 - £101,640,000) and attracts £4,992,000 in research grants and contracts (2009/10 - £4,414,000). Income from other sources totalled £31,371,000 (2009/10 - 30,524,000).[24]

Academic profile

Reputation and rankings

(2015, national)

Professor Ian A. Parker was suspended after he queried a lack of transparency in recruiting human resources.[26]


UCAS statistics show that the University received 58,752 applications in 2011 and granted places to 9,083 students.[27] Its student population stands at 35,165[28] and The Complete University Guide shows that the University has a ratio of enrolled male to female students standing at 42:58.[29]

The University admits undergraduate students who have achieved a broad range of UCAS tariff points, with an average of 343.7[30]

Government statistics also show 0.5% of students gaining a First Class Honours degree, 35% gaining a 2:1, 5% gaining a 2:2 and 55% gaining a 3rd or a pass.[31]


MMU has eight research institutes:

  • Dalton Research Institute (DRI)
  • Education and Social Research Institute (ESRI)
  • Healthcare Science Research Institute (HSRI)
  • Institute of Humanities and Social Science Research (HSSR)
  • Institute for Performance Research (IPR)
  • Manchester Institute for Research and Innovation in Art and Design (MIRIAD)
  • Research Institute for Business and Management (RIBM)
  • Research Institute for Health and Social Change (RIHSC)

Students' Union

The students' union has buildings on the All Saints, Crewe and Alsager campuses. The Students' Union exists to represent all members at the Manchester Metropolitan University and students on accredited external courses. The union is controlled by the Union Officers Group formed of six students and recent graduates of the university, elected by the students to control the Union on their behalf. A shop especially designed to cater to the university students has also been set up inside the Students' Union.

The students' union will be moving, in September 2014, to a new purpose built building on Cambridge Street, next to Cambridge and Cavendish Halls of Residence.

International partnerships

The university has developed international relationships with the following institutions:[3] Blaise Pascal University, Clermont-Ferrand, École Supérieure de Commerce de Montpellier, Montpellier and University of Savoy, France.

In Germany, Hochschule Bochum, Bochum and Viadrina European University, Frankfurt (Oder).

In Italy, University of Padua, Padova. In Lithuania, ISM University of Management and Economics, Vilnius. In Spain, Pablo de Olavide University, Seville, University of Murcia and University of Seville.

In the Netherlands, Radboud University Nijmegen

In Australia, Deakin University, Geelong, Melbourne, Warrnambool, Victoria, Flinders University, Adelaide, University of Technology, Sydney, University of Newcastle, Sydney. [

In Hong Kong,Hong Kong Baptist University and, Bridgewater State University,

In the USA, Buffalo State College, East Carolina University, Louisiana State University, Texas Tech University and University of North Carolina.

Notable alumni

This partial list of alumni of Manchester Metropolitan University includes some who attended institutions which became part of present-day MMU.


  1. ^ "Financial Statements Year Ended 31 July 2011". MMU. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Table 0a – All students by institution, mode of study, level of study, gender and domicile 2006/07" ( 
  3. ^ a b c "About Manchester Metropolitan University". Retrieved 30 August 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c "Manchester Metropolitan University". Retrieved 24 June 2012. 
  5. ^ retrieved 20thNovember2014
  6. ^ "Campus Redevelopments". Retrieved 15 February 2011. 
  7. ^ "The Faculty of Humanities, Languages and Social Science". MMU. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  8. ^ "Faculty of Science and Engineering". MMU. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  9. ^ "IRM". MMU. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  10. ^ "The Faculty of Art and Design". MMU. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  11. ^ "The Holden Gallery". MMU. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  12. ^ "New Spaces. New Facilities. New building.". 
  13. ^ "Manchester School of Art". 
  14. ^ "Accounts 0066". Manchester Metropolitan University. 
  15. ^ a b "Campus Redevelopment". 
  16. ^ MMU special collections; reading room and gallery
  17. ^ Rogerson, Ian (1978) "Library", in: The Making of a Polytechnic Building: All Saints Building. Manchester: Manchester Polytechnic; pp. 34–36
  18. ^ NoWAL
  19. ^ "The Faculty of Education". MMU. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  20. ^ "MMU Cheshire". MMU. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  21. ^ "Birley Fields Proposals". MMU. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  22. ^ "Board of Governors". MMU. Retrieved 15 February 2012. 
  23. ^ "Executive". MMU. Retrieved 15 February 2012. 
  24. ^ a b c "MMU Financial Statements Year Ended 31 July 2011". 
  25. ^ "University League Table 2015". The Complete University Guide. Retrieved 5 June 2014. 
  26. ^ Grove, Jack (1st November 2011). "gross misconduct''"Cause célèbre scholar queried Met managers: A psychology professor suspended after criticising university managers is to face a disciplinary hearing for alleged ".
  27. ^ "Applications (choices) and accepted applicants to each UCAS member university and college 2011". 
  29. ^ "Manchester Metropolitan University". 
  30. ^
  31. ^ "Degree results show what class of degree students achieved". Retrieved 15 February 2012. 
  32. ^ "A happy homecoming for graduate Vernon Kay". The Bolton News (Newsquest Media Group). 10 July 2009. Retrieved 8 October 2012. 
  33. ^

External links

  • Manchester Metropolitan University official website
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