Swansea Metropolitan University

Swansea Metropolitan
Welsh: Campws Abertawe
Former names
Swansea Metropolitan University, West Glamorgan Institute of Higher Education (1976), Swansea (Municipal) School of Art and Crafts (1853); Swansea College of Education (1872), Swansea Technical College (1897).
Parent institution
University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Students 5,765[1]
Undergraduates 4,520[1]
Postgraduates 1,075[1]
Other students
175 FE[1]
Address Mount Pleasant
Swansea SA1 6ED
, Swansea, Wales, UK
Campus Urban

Swansea Metropolitan University (Welsh: Prifysgol Fetropolitan Abertawe) is the former name of the university – based in Swansea, Wales, UK – which on 1 August 2013 merged with and became a constituent campus of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

Employing more than 500 staff and teaching over 6,000 students, the Swansea Metropolitan University grew out of the three former Swansea colleges of Art, Teacher Education, and Technology which were founded in 1853, 1872 and 1897 respectively and merged in 1976 to form a centre for the delivery of vocational higher education.


For most of the 20th century there were – in addition to Swansea University – three separate further educational institutions serving the city of Swansea: the Swansea (Municipal) School of Art and Crafts (established in 1853); the Swansea College of Education (established in 1872) and Swansea Technical College (established in 1897).

During this time, the School of Art and Crafts was based on Alexandra Road, not far from its present location at the bottom of Mount Pleasant Hill opposite Swansea Central Police Station.

The former College of Education was based in the Townhill area of the city where the Metropolitan University's teaching and humanities courses are still taught.

Swansea Technical College, located in Mount Pleasant, was a well known and respected supplier of vocational qualifications; where many of the Metropolitan University's programmes are still based, including business, computing, engineering, and construction.

In 1976 the three institutions came together to form the West Glamorgan Institute of Higher Education. In 1992 the institution was renamed Swansea Institute of Higher Education and became an independent Higher Education Corporation away from local authority control. In 2008 and following a successful two-year inspection, the Privy Council gave permission for the institution to be renamed Swansea Metropolitan University.

Despite these radical changes, the university has stayed close to its roots, with the three founder institutions still reflected in the four Faculties that make up the university today.

There has been a change in the make-up of the institution over the past half century, moving from three separate establishments offering few higher education programmes, to a university that has now close to 7,000 students and is an established and respected provider of undergraduate, postgraduate and research qualifications, as well as professional programmes. Yet, at the same time, it has stayed a vocationally driven, industry-focused university, serving the local and wider community beyond.

Despite being an institution that focuses on teaching, sixty per cent of the university's research work has been rated as being of 'international significance', and in some cases 'world leading' according to the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, with particular strengths in art and design, teaching and engineering.

Both Townhill and Mount pleasant campuses are due to close when the university relocates to a new redevelopment based in SA1 waterfront.


Swansea Metropolitan University has four faculties:

Faculty of Architecture, Computing & Engineering

The Faculty of Applied Design and Engineering, which is true to the traditions of the former Swansea College of Technology in that it is a key supplier of skilled workers for a number of different modern-day industries covering engineering, logistics, construction, computing, industrial design, and the creative industries.


  • Engineering
  • Architecture and Built Environment
  • Applied Computing

Swansea College of Art

Based in the redeveloped former Dynevor Grammar School, in the heart of the city, and now known as Swansea College of Art a constituent campus of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.


  • School of Visual Communication
  • School of Fine Art & Photography
  • School of Design & Applied Arts
  • School of Film & Digital Media

Faculty of Humanities

Based on Swansea Metropolitan University’s Townhill campus. The Faculty of Humanities provides teacher training and has an extensive range of undergraduate and postgraduate teaching programmes and has also expanded to include courses in performance and literature, counseling and psychology.


  • School of Education
  • School of Social Sciences and Performing Arts

Faculty of Business and Management

Based on University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Business campus, High Street Swansea (the site of the former Swansea College of Technology). It has a portfolio of programmes which includes business, leisure and tourism, public services, management and health and social care.


  • Swansea Business School
  • School of Leisure, Tourism and Sport
  • School of Public Service Leadership

Student accommodation

There are five halls of residence based on two separate campuses. There are over 300 rooms for first year students to apply for with a mixture of standard study bedrooms and rooms with en-suite facilities.


The campuses at Dynevor, Mount Pleasant and Townhill each have a comprehensive library stocked with materials relating to the courses taught on each site. Students can also access electronic books and electronic journals, plus other databases and information on and off campus 24/7, via the library website. In all three libraries photocopiers are available for use, in addition to open access computer areas with PCs linked to the university wireless network.

IT and computing

Open Access PCs are available in all three libraries; in addition there is a dedicated computer suite available in the Thompson Building on the Mount Pleasant Campus which offers extended opening hours. All PCs offer a range of general purpose packages and have internet connectivity. Printing provision is available in all areas. Technical queries and support to users is provided by a dedicated group of staff technicians.

Careers Service

The Careers Service is available to all and aims to enhance employability and to assist career planning. A Careers and Employability Service provides advice and guidance on career planning, job seeking skills, CV writing, interview techniques and confidence building.

Each campus library has a careers section where students are able to research career options and acquire specific employer knowledge. Online information and guidance is also available and students can develop E-portfolios and Personal Development Plans to create an employability profile.


The university has a track record of supporting graduates who wish to start their own business and they rank as the best in Wales for producing successful graduate start-up businesses. In total, 26% of all Welsh graduate start-ups, which have survived three years or more, began life at the university.

See also


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