Cardiff University

is a public research university in Cardiff, Wales. Founded in 1883 as the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire

Discussions on the founding of a university college in South Wales began in 1879, when a group of Welsh and English MPs urged the government to consider the poor provision of higher and intermediate education in Wales and “the best means of assisting any local effort which may be made for supplying such deficiency.”

In October 1881, William Gladstone’s government appointed a departmental committee to conduct “an enquiry into the nature and extent of intermediate and higher education in Wales”, chaired by Lord Aberdare and consisting of Viscount Emlyn, Reverend Prebendary H. G. Robinson, Henry Richard, John Rhys and Lewis Morris. The Aberdare Report, as it came to be known, took evidence from a wide range of sources and over 250 witnesses and recommended a college each for North Wales and South Wales, the latter to be located in Glamorgan and the former to be the established University College of Wales in Aberystwyth (now Aberystwyth University). The committee cited the unique Welsh national identity and noted that many students in Wales could not afford to travel to University in England or Scotland. It advocated a national degree-awarding university for Wales, composed of regional colleges, which should be non-sectarian in nature and exclude the teaching of theology.


John Viriamu Jones was the founding Principal of the College.
After the recommendation was published, Cardiff Corporation sought to secure the location of the college in Cardiff, and on 12 December 1881 formed a University College Committee to aid the matter. There was competition to be the site between Swansea and Cardiff. On 12 March 1883, after arbitration, a decision was made in Cardiff’s favour. This was strengthened by the need to consider the interests of Monmouthshire, at that time not legally incorporated into Wales, and the greater sum received by Cardiff in support of the college, through a public appeal that raised £37,000 and a number of private donations, notably from the Lord Bute and Lord Windsor. In April Lord Aberdare was appointed as the College’s first president. The possible locations considered included Cardiff Arms Park, Cathedral Road, and Moria Terrace, Roath, before the site of the Old Royal Infirmary buildings on Newport Road was chosen.


  • Cardiff Business School
  • School of Biosciences
  • School of Chemistry
  • School of Computer Science and Informatics
  • School of Dentistry
  • School of Earth and Ocean Sciences
  • School of Engineering
  • School of English, Communication & Philosophy
  • School of Geography and Planning
  • School of Healthcare Sciences
  • School of History, Archaeology & Religion
  • School of Journalism, Media and Culture
  • School of Law and Politics
  • School of Mathematics
  • School of Medicine
  • School of Modern Languages
  • School of Music
  • School of Optometry and Vision Sciences
  • School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • School of Psychology
  • School of Social Sciences
  • School of Physics and Astronomy
  • School of Architecture


  • Student accommodation
  • Students’ Union
  • Media