Bishop Grosseteste can now officially use the title university after it received written approval from the Privy Council.
It joins the ranks of the University of Lincoln, as the second university in the city.
BGU unveiled its new name and logo last month after the government indicated that ten university colleges had met the criteria to be called universities.
“We hoped that Privy Council would give their approval quite quickly and receiving their letter this week was a wonderful early Christmas present,” said Professor Muriel Robinson, who becomes the university’s first Vice Chancellor.
“It’s fitting recognition for our hard-working and talented staff and for our students, who will be the first to graduate with a degree from Bishop Grosseteste University.”
Until last month only higher education institutions with 4,000 or more students could use the title university. Smaller institutions were called university colleges, but now all HE institutions with more than 1,000 students have the right to apply to call themselves a university.
Professor Robinson predicts that university status will help the institution to attract high-quality staff and students in the future. BGU has around 2,000 students and strict government number controls on all universities mean there are no plans to increase undergraduate student numbers for the foreseeable future.
“Last year our applications from prospective students bucked the national trend and increased, and we expect that university title will make BGU even more attractive to students,” she said.
“But there are many advantages associated with being a small university and we have no plans to increase the number of full-time undergraduate students who come here, though we do hope to attract more postgraduate and part-time students which will benefit the local economy without putting pressure on living accommodation.”