The University of Essex is a public research university in Essex, England. Established by royal charter in 1965, Essex is one of the original plate glass universities. Essex's shield consists of the ancient arms attributed to the Kingdom of Essex, and the motto, "Thought the harder, heart the keener", is adapted from the Anglo-Saxon poem The Battle of Maldon. The university comprises three campuses with its primary campus located within Wivenhoe Park and campuses in Southend-on-Sea and in Loughton.Essex is rated Gold for Teaching Excellence by the TEF since 2017, named University of the Year at the Times Higher Education Awards in 2018, and is ranked an internationally excellent research-intensive university by the REF. Essex's Department of Government received Regius Professorship conferred by Her Majesty, The Queen in 2013 and the university was awarded the Queen's Anniversary Prize on two occasions for advancing Human Rights in 2009 and Social and Economic Research in 2017. Essex has produced many distinguished alumni in several fields across the world least but not limited to: Nobel Prize laureates, a head of state, senior governors and politicians, executives and economists, scientists, artists, academics, authors, and film directors.
Essex has an international character with 132 countries represented in its student body. The Times Higher Education World Rankings placed Essex joint 15th for the highest percentage of international students with 44.3% of students coming from outside the UK. Essex is also in the top 20 for 'international outlook' in these rankings – this indicator measures the proportion of staff and students from outside the UK alongside international collaboration on research.