University Ranking 2024: The Best Universities In The UK Today

Embark on a journey through the intellectual powerhouses of the United Kingdom with our comprehensive guide to the 2024 University Ranking. In this article, we delve into the prestigious QS World University Ranking 2024 and The Complete University Guide 2024 to unveil the pinnacle of academic excellence. Join us as we navigate through the intricate world of higher education, spotlighting the best universities that shape the future of knowledge and innovation in the UK. 

Top UK Universities 2024

Table of Contents

QS World University Rankings Methodology

The QS World University Ranking stands as a global benchmark for academic prowess, and its methodology is intricately woven with diverse metrics that encapsulate the essence of higher education institutions. Here’s an exploration of the key factors that constitute the QS World University Ranking methodology:

  1. Academic Reputation: Academic reputation forms the bedrock of the QS evaluation. This criterion gauges the opinions of academics worldwide, providing insight into the esteem in which a university is held within the academic community.

  2. Employer Reputation: This metric reflects the perceptions of employers towards the quality of graduates, emphasising the real-world impact of academic programmes.

  3. Faculty Student Ratio: The ratio of faculty members to students is a crucial indicator of the level of personalised attention students can expect. A lower faculty-student ratio often signifies a more conducive learning environment and better access to academic support.

  4. Citations per Faculty: Research impact is measured through citations per faculty, reflecting the influence of scholarly work produced by the institution. This metric underlines a university’s contribution to the global academic community and the dissemination of knowledge.

  5. International Faculty Ratio: A diverse faculty enriches the academic experience. The international faculty ratio assesses the proportion of faculty members from different parts of the world, contributing to a multicultural and inclusive learning environment.

  6. International Students Ratio: The presence of international students adds a global dimension to the university community. This ratio evaluates the diversity of the student body, fostering cross-cultural exchanges and preparing students for a globalised world.

  7. International Research Network: Recognising the importance of global collaboration, this metric assesses the extent of a university’s international research network. Partnerships and collaborations on a global scale contribute to the institution’s research impact and reputation.

  8. Employment Outcomes: This metric evaluates how well universities prepare students for successful careers and their ability to secure meaningful employment after graduation.

  9. Sustainability: This criterion highlights institutions that actively contribute to a sustainable future.

Top Universities in the UK 2024: UK University League Table

Here are the top universities in the country based on the 2024 QS World University Rankings. 

RankUniversityLocationOverall ScoreAcademic ReputationEmployer ReputationFaculty Student RatioCitations per FacultyInternational Faculty RatioInternational Students RatioInternational Research NetworkEmployment OutcomesSustainability
2University of CambridgeCambridge, United Kingdom99.210010010092.310095.899.910097.3
3University of OxfordOxford, United Kingdom98.910010010090.698.298.210010097.8
6Imperial College LondonLondon, United Kingdom97.898.399.498.59410010096.78394.4
9UCLLondon, United Kingdom92.499.597.998.474.399.110010051.692.5
22The University of EdinburghEdinburgh, United Kingdom86.198.196.972.458.798.899.999.648.199.7
32The University of ManchesterManchester, United Kingdom82.295.49853.849.193.599.499.771.992.3
40King's College LondonLondon, United Kingdom79.389.582.364.661.198.810099.234.481.1
45The London School of Economics and Political ScienceLondon, United Kingdom76.967.796.139.680.210010032.498.697.8
55University of BristolBristol, United Kingdom72.474.984.747.364.785.586.884.439.681.3
67The University of WarwickCoventry, United Kingdom68.671.38837.34998.299.389.747.262.5
76University of GlasgowGlasgow, United Kingdom65.276.370.741.731.89699.59026.799.5
78Durham UniversityDurham, United Kingdom65.159.589.327.853.397.586.986.229.297.6
81University of SouthamptonSouthampton, United Kingdom63.551.551.252.871.496.197.49732.582.7
84University of BirminghamBirmingham, United Kingdom6367.575.741.338.292.383.99629.580.4
95University of St AndrewsSt. Andrews, United Kingdom6147.367.264.957.798.710051.122.492.1
100University of NottinghamNottingham, United Kingdom60.460.772.132.246.59075.298.424.480
104The University of SheffieldSheffield, United Kingdom59.758.752.354.746.98497.596.124.976.3
110Newcastle UniversityNewcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom58.64874.535.650.29070.996.124.198.8
122Lancaster UniversityLancaster, United Kingdom55.739.740.225.279.393.690.675.320.798
145Queen Mary University of LondonLondon, United Kingdom51.948.832.838.750.799.799.472.816.869.9
148University of BathBath, United Kingdom51.835.674.316.161.996.381.659.326.548.4
153University of ExeterExeter, United Kingdom50.94351.127.443.391.676.289.819.794.8
154Cardiff UniversityCardiff, United Kingdom50.546.548.333.739.68470.681.618.997.9
167University of YorkYork, United Kingdom49.443.535.34540.388.378.279.219.897.8
169University of ReadingReading, United Kingdom48.933.239.316.167.488.48177.832.372.5
176University of LiverpoolLiverpool, United Kingdom48.544.43539.737.987.87997.225.672
202Queen's University BelfastBelfast, United Kingdom45.833.630.327.543.510098.984.114.391
208University of AberdeenAberdeen, United Kingdom44.629.632.529.642.195.896.773.320.598.1
212Loughborough UniversityLoughborough, United Kingdom44.230.566.823.634.687.363.577.118.863.4
218University of SussexBrighton, United Kingdom43.122.723.428.545.19085.887.116.973.9
235Heriot-Watt UniversityEdinburgh, United Kingdom41.216.421.118.679.410097.640.221.343.5
244University of SurreyGuildford, United Kingdom39.920.423.423.256.296.888.371.116.857.7
272University of LeicesterLeicester, United Kingdom37.321.
276University of StrathclydeGlasgow, United Kingdom3726.334.617.733.793.36761.62459.2
295University of East Anglia (UEA)Norwich, United Kingdom35.419.28.516.8666838.264.812.784.3
307Swansea UniversitySwansea, United Kingdom33.9214523.627.473.154.15910.661
328City, University of LondonLondon, United Kingdom32.621.418.16.742.29599.322.128.341.7
343Brunel University LondonLondon, United Kingdom31.911.313.37.944.299.799.656.918.562.8
374Birkbeck, University of LondonLondon, United Kingdom29.710.83.514.165.197.5989.112.312
413Oxford Brookes UniversityOxford, United Kingdom27.128.929.713.88.468.870.327.118.434.3
413Royal Holloway University of LondonEgham, United Kingdom27.1165.713.736.394.488.723.711.138.1
431University of StirlingStirling, United Kingdom26.211.510.210.534.771.983.514.414.879.8
446University of DundeeDundee, United Kingdom25.918.313.637.514.29679.927.410.521.8
459Aston UniversityBirmingham, United Kingdom25.712.922.81034.19338.350.518.112.3
481Essex, University ofColchester, United Kingdom25.116.45.11325.699.89940.113.49.6
498Bangor UniversityBangor, United Kingdom23.98.85.314.939.742.255.424.61387.4
502Ulster UniversityColeraine, United Kingdom23.28.41311.912.110090.538.511.663.7
511University of PortsmouthPortsmouth, United Kingdom23.
523SOAS University of LondonLondon, United Kingdom22.818.19.518.315.210099119.63.8
548University of HullHull, United Kingdom22.58.53.51325.457.467.436.416.885.2
561Northumbria University at NewcastleNewcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom21.410.515.910.71667.272.349.81629.1
567University of PlymouthPlymouth, United Kingdom21912.
571University of HuddersfieldHuddersfield, United Kingdom20.812.5156.720.965.179.441.297.3
590Coventry UniversityCoventry, United Kingdom20.79.212.515.76.874.810050.713.726.6
593Manchester Metropolitan UniversityManchester, United Kingdom20.11213.48.59.844.440.566.614.669.3
595Goldsmiths, University of LondonLondon, United Kingdom2014.9614.713.697.892.
601-610Nottingham Trent UniversityNottingham, United Kingdomn/a10.620.510.25.256.96152.113.850.6
641-650Kingston University, LondonKingston upon Thames, United Kingdomn/a17.512.66.18.771.999.
661-670University of BradfordBradford, United Kingdomn/a8.
661-670Aberystwyth UniversityAberystwyth, United Kingdomn/a9.56.419.523.546.149.527.110.59.6
671-680Middlesex UniversityLondon, United Kingdomn/a5.64.88.314.385.199.620.615.88.6
671-680University of GreenwichGreenwich, United Kingdomn/a4.54.24.610.691.910041.112.812.7
711-720University of WestminsterLondon, United Kingdomn/a12.96.75.9678.41001.916.31.9
731-740Bournemouth UniversityPoole, United Kingdomn/a5.
741-750University of the West of EnglandBristol, United Kingdomn/a9.29.48.410.848.475.824.88.921.6
751-760Liverpool John Moores UniversityLiverpool, United Kingdomn/a9.96.88.414.548.124.456.210.424.4
761-770University of BrightonBrighton, United Kingdomn/a8.478.915.856.254.227.611.29.1
771-780Keele UniversityKeele, United Kingdomn/a6.74.315.
801-850De Montfort UniversityLeicester, United Kingdomn/a5.
801-850Edinburgh Napier UniversityEdinburgh, United Kingdomn/a4.
851-900London South Bank UniversityLondon, United Kingdomn/an/a3.
851-900Queen Margaret University , EdinburghMusselburgh, United Kingdomn/a3.845.31761.27618.71
851-900University of East LondonLondon, United Kingdomn/a3.
851-900University of HertfordshireHatfield, United Kingdomn/a4.
851-900University of LincolnLincoln, United Kingdomn/an/a6.
851-900University of SalfordSalford, United Kingdomn/a7.446.77.838.170.120.811.89.8
901-950London Metropolitan UniversityLondon, United Kingdomn/a5.
901-950Robert Gordon UniversityAberdeen, United Kingdomn/a3.511.75.44.963.976.
901-950University of Central LancashirePreston, United Kingdomn/an/a5.95.811.54.43781.616.71.5
1001-1200Birmingham City UniversityBirmingham, United Kingdomn/a5.
1001-1200Canterbury Christ Church UniversityBexleyheath, United Kingdomn/a5.
1001-1200Glasgow Caledonian UniversityGlasgow, United Kingdomn/a5.
1001-1200Harper Adams UniversityNewport, United Kingdomn/a4.
1001-1200Leeds Beckett UniversityLeeds, United Kingdomn/an/a4.48.135.2182.211.511.51.6
1001-1200Sheffield Hallam UniversitySheffield, United Kingdomn/an/a6.512.1104.93530.96.72.5
1001-1200The University of NorthamptonNorthampton, United Kingdomn/a3.
1001-1200University of DerbyDerby, United Kingdomn/a4.
1001-1200University of WolverhamptonTelford, United Kingdomn/an/a3.

The Complete University Guide Rankings Methodology

In the intricate world of university rankings, The Complete University Guide stands out for its comprehensive and insightful methodology. The guide employs a multifaceted approach, taking into account various crucial factors that collectively define the quality of higher education institutions. Let’s delve into the pillars that shape The Complete University Guide’s methodology:

  1. Entry Standards: At the heart of academic excellence lies the entry standards criterion. This factor assesses the qualifications and academic achievements of incoming students. The higher the entry standards, the more selective and competitive the university, reflecting a commitment to attracting top-tier talent.

  2. Student Satisfaction: The satisfaction of students is a paramount aspect of The Complete University Guide’s evaluation. It considers the overall experience of students, encompassing teaching quality, support services, and the general campus environment. A content and fulfilled student body often signifies a university’s commitment to providing an enriching educational journey.

  3. Research Quality: Research prowess is a cornerstone of higher education institutions. The guide places significant emphasis on the quality and impact of research conducted by universities. This criterion reflects an institution’s contribution to advancing knowledge and its standing in the academic community.

  4. Graduate Prospects: The ultimate goal of higher education is to prepare students for successful careers. The Graduate Prospects criterion evaluates how well universities equip their graduates for the professional world. Factors such as employability, industry connections, and alumni success play a pivotal role in determining a university’s standing in this regard.

Best Universities in the UK 2024: UK University League Table

Here are the best universities in the UK according to The Complete University Guide 2024 rankings. 

RankingUniversity NameOverall ScoreEntry StandardsStudent SatisfactionResearch QualityGraduate Prospects
1University of Cambridge100%98%n/a88%91%
2University of Oxford98%97%n/a87%90%
3London School of Economics and Poli...96%92%78%88%87%
4University of St Andrews92%100%84%83%83%
5University of Bath89%85%80%83%91%
6Imperial College London89%97%79%91%96%
7Loughborough University89%76%80%83%84%
8Durham University88%87%78%83%86%
9UCL (University College London)86%90%78%87%85%
10Lancaster University84%72%80%84%79%
11University of Warwick84%81%80%86%85%
12The University of Edinburgh80%93%74%85%82%
13University of Surrey80%67%81%82%84%
14University of Birmingham80%74%76%86%82%
15University of Exeter79%77%79%84%81%
16University of Bristol78%82%76%88%83%
17=University of Southampton78%73%78%85%80%
17=University of York78%74%79%86%80%
19University of Manchester76%79%75%87%82%
20University of Sheffield76%74%79%85%78%
21Cardiff University75%72%76%84%83%
22University of Leeds75%76%74%84%80%
23University of East Anglia UEA75%65%76%84%78%
24=King's College London, University o...74%81%75%86%86%
24=University of Liverpool74%69%75%83%75%
26University of Glasgow74%99%77%86%78%
27Queen's University Belfast73%74%77%82%83%
28University of Nottingham73%73%76%84%82%
29University of the Arts London72%71%76%80%59%
30Newcastle University72%71%74%82%79%
31University of Strathclyde71%99%79%82%80%
32University of Essex71%59%78%81%69%
33Harper Adams University71%63%78%65%71%
34University of Reading71%62%78%81%76%
35University of Aberdeen70%87%81%76%76%
36Northumbria University, Newcastle69%67%77%76%75%
37Royal Holloway, University of Londo...68%65%78%83%68%
38University of Leicester68%62%77%82%72%
39Aberystwyth University68%62%83%75%60%
40Swansea University68%64%77%80%75%
41Aston University, Birmingham67%63%77%76%79%
42=City, University of London67%65%74%81%76%
42=Nottingham Trent University67%60%80%77%68%
44Heriot-Watt University67%83%74%80%77%
45University of Lincoln67%60%79%74%67%
46Oxford Brookes University66%56%77%72%73%
47University of Portsmouth66%60%79%75%72%
48University of Kent66%60%76%82%70%
49Ulster University65%63%80%80%73%
50University of Sussex65%63%76%82%66%
51University of Stirling65%84%79%78%70%
52Bangor University64%61%80%81%67%
53Queen Mary University of London64%71%75%85%74%
54University of West London63%56%83%67%67%
55Bournemouth University63%56%76%69%75%
56Norwich University of the Arts63%62%78%74%64%
57Edge Hill University63%64%77%67%67%
58=University of Dundee62%85%77%81%79%
58=SOAS University of London62%66%74%81%73%
60Manchester Metropolitan University62%63%79%78%66%
61=University of Chester62%61%76%63%68%
61=Falmouth University62%62%79%79%59%
63Sheffield Hallam University62%57%75%73%72%
64University of Plymouth62%65%78%75%75%
65Keele University61%62%76%77%76%
66Leeds Beckett University61%58%78%67%67%
67Bristol, University of the West of ...61%61%78%74%75%
68University of Brighton60%57%75%76%72%
69Coventry University60%59%80%73%68%
70University of Huddersfield60%61%78%70%65%
71Cardiff Metropolitan University60%62%76%71%68%
72Arts University Bournemouth59%68%78%66%56%
73Royal Agricultural University59%59%79%58%68%
74Goldsmiths, University of London59%60%70%78%63%
75University of Sunderland59%61%80%69%61%
76University of Hull59%60%78%78%72%
77Liverpool Hope University59%58%79%63%60%
78St George's, University of London58%70%72%81%91%
79Glasgow Caledonian University58%83%78%74%76%
80University of Suffolk58%53%76%67%79%
81Liverpool John Moores University58%62%78%70%68%
82University of Salford58%61%77%75%69%
83=University of Chichester57%62%79%60%61%
83=University of Hertfordshire57%56%79%76%70%
85University of Worcester57%60%77%58%71%
86St Mary's University, Twickenham57%56%82%68%67%
87=Kingston University57%60%78%72%69%
87=University for the Creative Arts57%61%78%77%51%
89Edinburgh Napier University56%73%79%71%75%
90Birmingham City University56%61%78%67%68%
91University of Roehampton55%50%79%78%56%
92=Teesside University, Middlesbrough55%57%79%69%73%
92=Robert Gordon University55%72%81%63%76%
94Leeds Arts University55%70%79%44%62%
95Brunel University London55%59%75%72%66%
96=University of Winchester55%58%78%63%66%
96=Solent University (Southampton)55%57%78%54%60%
98University of Gloucestershire54%56%76%61%65%
99University of Central Lancashire54%61%77%70%69%
100University of Derby54%59%80%63%67%
101University of South Wales54%61%78%66%64%
102=Abertay University53%75%80%67%67%
102=Bath Spa University53%57%78%68%59%
102=Queen Margaret University, Edinburg...53%78%78%65%65%
105University of Bradford53%62%76%71%76%
106Canterbury Christ Church University53%54%77%68%74%
107York St John University52%56%80%61%60%
108Staffordshire University51%57%78%70%62%
109De Montfort University51%53%76%67%67%
110=University of Greenwich50%58%79%72%68%
110=Middlesex University50%53%77%70%71%
112University of Westminster, London50%55%76%75%63%
113London South Bank University49%54%77%70%65%
114Buckinghamshire New University49%51%80%56%64%
115University of Northampton48%54%77%56%67%
116Plymouth Marjon University48%57%83%62%65%
117University of Wolverhampton47%53%78%64%65%
118=University of Wales Trinity Saint D...47%67%79%62%58%
118=Anglia Ruskin University47%53%79%70%65%
120University of Bolton47%56%81%47%59%
121Leeds Trinity University46%53%80%53%59%
122University of Cumbria44%57%76%58%66%
123=London Metropolitan University43%47%82%66%58%
123=University of East London43%54%77%65%61%
125Birmingham Newman University43%54%79%51%62%
126University of Bedfordshire42%53%78%68%66%
127University of Buckingham42%61%79%n/a71%
128University of the West of Scotland40%66%77%62%68%
129Bishop Grosseteste University40%51%81%48%65%
130Wrexham University31%54%82%55%63%

Frequently Asked Questions

Rankings can fluctuate, but significant changes are often gradual. Institutions may invest in improving certain aspects to enhance their position, but consistency over several years is a more reliable indicator.

International students should consider rankings alongside factors like location, cultural fit, and available support services. Researching specific programmes and faculty can help make a well-informed decision.

Some ranking systems offer separate evaluations for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. It’s essential to explore rankings relevant to your academic level and field of study.

Yes, employability is often a component in university rankings. Factors like alumni success, employer feedback, and internship opportunities contribute to this aspect.

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