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Friday, 2 August, 2002, 15:10 GMT 16:10 UK
University's name 're-branding'
Northumbria has opted for a shorter name
The University of Northumbria at Newcastle has deemed its name too cumbersome and has decided to re-brand itself.

The former polytechnic is to shorten its name simply to Northumbria University and is designing a new logo.

"We've been up and running for 10 years and everybody knows we're in Newcastle," a spokeswoman said.

"The students say they're at Northumbria, so it makes sense to reflect that," she said.

The changes have been devised over an 18-month period, with students at the university having a chance to voice their opinions.

"No matter how intrinsically excellent the product, if it is not perceived as such it will not become 'popular' and therefore 'distinctive'," said Dr Sean Figgis, head of communications at the university.

He said the university needed a clearer image to appeal to students.

Title contenders

In terms of length of title, even the old name was shorter than another new university which shares a city with an older university - the University of Central England in Birmingham.

And both are shorter than the Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College or the Surrey Institute of Art and Design University College.

The university's vice chancellor, Kel Fidler, wants to reduce reliance on the funding council, most notably by expanding the university's research base.

The university's five faculties will be broken down into 11 schools from September.

"It's a way of getting rid of a layer of administration at the university - the schools will be independent," a spokeswoman said.

The university will also look to expand the number of vocational courses available with a view to widening participation and encouraging life-long learning.

See also:

14 May 02 | Education
14 Dec 01 | Education
16 May 01 | Education
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