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Top UK Universities by Region 2013/14

Top UK Universities by Region 2013/14 main image

See the latest results based on the QS World University Rankings 2014/15, with this article.

The UK is home to many of the world’s highest ranking universities; only the US has more entries in the QS World University Rankings®. Here’s a look at the top UK universities according to the 2013/14 edition of the rankings, broken down by region.

Top universities in London

Many top UK universities are clustered in capital and largest city, London. The highest ranking of these are University College London (UCL) and Imperial College London, which are ranked 4th and 5th in the QS World University Rankings® 2013/2014.

Other top universities in London include:

  • King's College London (19=)
  • London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE, 68th)
  • Queen Mary, University of London (115)
  • Royal Holloway University of London (265=)
  • SOAS - School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London (337)
  • City University London (347)
  • Brunel University (360=)
  • Birkbeck College, University of London (374=)
  • Goldsmiths, University of London (461-470)
  •  Kingston University (471-480)
  • London Metropolitan University (651-700)
  • University of East London (701+)
  • University of Greenwich (701+)

Some of these universities are right in the city center, while others are much further out. Some specialize in a particular subject area; others offer courses across the full spectrum, meaning plenty of choice for anyone who wants to study in London.

Top universities in England (outside London)

Of course London is by no means the UK’s only attractive destination for students. And while it does have a particularly high concentration of world-leading universities, there are even more top UK universities to choose from elsewhere.

In fact, the UK’s most internationally famous universities, Oxford and Cambridge, are both outside of the capital, although both are within about an hour’s train journey. Cambridge is ranked 3rd and Oxford 6th in the QS World University Rankings 2013/2014.

Beyond Oxford and Cambridge, the top universities in England outside of London are:

University of Bristol (30)

University of Exeter (168=)

University of Bradford (501-550)

University of Manchester (33)

University of Bath (187)

University of Hull (501-550)

University of Birmingham (62)

University of Sussex (193=)

Middlesex University (651-700)

University of Warwick (64)

University of Leicester (202=)

University of Hertfordshire (651-700)

University of Sheffield (71=)

University of Reading (213)

University of Plymouth (651-700)

University of Nottingham (75=)

University of East Anglia (229)

University of Salford (651-700)

University of Southampton (86=)

Loughborough University (244=)

Coventry University (701+)

Durham University (90)

University of Surrey (284=)

Manchester Metropolitan University (701+)

University of Leeds (97=)

University of Essex (338=)

Northumbria University at Newcastle (701+)

University of York (124)

Oxford Brookes University (374=)

Nottingham Trent University (701+)

Newcastle University (129)

Aston University (399=)

University of Central Lancashire (701+)

University of Liverpool (130=)

University of Kent (411-420)

 

Lancaster University (156)

Keele University (501-550)

 

Top universities in Scotland

England is of course not the only option for those who want to study at one of the top UK universities. The UK’s other three member states – Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – are also home to a good selection of internationally prestigious institutions.

Scotland’s highest ranking university is the University of Edinburgh, at 17= in the QS World University Rankings 2013/14 (fifth highest ranked in the UK overall). Other top universities in Scotland include:

  • University of Glasgow (51)
  • University of St Andrews (83)
  • University of Aberdeen (148)
  • University of Dundee (219)
  • University of Strathclyde (257)
  • Heriot-Watt University (369)
  • University of Stirling (501-550)
  • Robert Gordon University (701+)

For EU students, an additional incentive to choose a university in Scotland is the fact that undergraduate tuition is free. (This does not apply to students coming from England, Wales or Northern Ireland.)

Top universities in Wales and Northern Ireland

Finally, a look at the top UK universities in Wales and Northern Ireland. With the smallest populations of the UK’s four member states, Wales and Northern Ireland have fewer universities overall, but still some high-ranking options.

The top Welsh entry in the QS World University Rankings 2013/14 is Cardiff University, ranked 136=. Other top universities in Wales include: Swansea University (431-440), Bangor University (471-480) and Aberystwyth University (551-600). Over in Northern Ireland, the highest entry is Queen’s University of Belfast (172=), followed by the University of Ulster (601-650).

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Written by Laura Bridgestock
The former editor of TopUniversities.com, Laura oversaw the site's editorial content and student forums. She also edited the QS Top Grad School Guide and contributed to market research reports, including 'How Do Students Use Rankings?'

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