The choice of what and where to study will always rank at the top among the few decisions in a student’s life. Despite the fact that many of you will graduate from school knowing what comes next, many others won’t. It is easy to feel overwhelmed by choices after leaving school as there are many universities and degree options available. To combat this pressure, students should conduct as much research as possible before making any decisions. With the help of this comprehensive guide to university league tables, you’ll discover that selecting the right course and university is an exhilarating experience.
What Are The League Tables?
The university league tables display the most recent rankings of universities in the United Kingdom in 70 different subject areas. Entry standards, student satisfaction, research intensity, research quality, graduate potentials, academic services spend, facility spend, good honours, degree completion, and student-staff ratio are examples of these. Each of these criteria can be used to rank the university league tables by subject further.
Whom Are The League Tables For?
The international university league tables is designed for any prospective student who is deciding where and what to study. When deciding on the best university, it is extremely beneficial to create a shortlist of institutions from which to choose. You can analyze how courses are taught, which modules are covered, how they are assessed, and anything that is important to you in making your decision.
What Does The League Table Include?
The university league tables by subject include the following:
- Student satisfaction Scores: a useful indicator of how students rate aspects of their university experience – Scores do not differ between universities.
- Student-to-staff ratio: Another factor used in league tables, this can be a good estimate of how much a university wants to invest in its employees. These, however, will not tell you how many hours of instruction you will receive or who will be instructing you.
- Graduate prospects: These figures provide a snapshot of what graduates do next, but they are only collected 15 months after they graduate.
- Entry grades: These can have a significant impact on subject rankings, but you could suggest that how well students perform at university is more vital than what they came in with. Students’ total Ucas tariff points are usually higher than the actual entry requirements for a course, so don’t be put off if a course appears to be just out of reach based on what the university has stated in its requirements.
What To Look For In League Tables?
- Objective vs subjective data: To know where the data is coming from should be more neutral, for instance data from external agency statistics, whereas student feedback may be influenced by a variety of external issues as well as personal feelings.
- Indicators, not definitive information: Not all categories are updated annually. Evaluations of a university’s qualitative research may be several years old. Even annual surveys will not always reflect the most recent changes: due to publication dates, the information quickly becomes out of date.
- Overall university vs subject: Along with an overall university ranking, there are ratings for various subject areas. These can provide a more accurate assessment of what you’re likely to face as a student.
How Are Universities Ranked And The League Tables Compared?
- World Rankings: Students (especially international students) may be interested in the World University Rankings. The Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) World University Rankings and the QS World University Rankings provide an indication of how UK universities compare to their equivalent institutions around the world. However, students are frequently perplexed as to why a number of universities that consistently rank in the top ten of British university league tables rank surprisingly low in global rankings. This disparity can be explained by differences in the league table’s methodology and criteria.
- UK Rankings: Three national rankings of universities in the UK are published annually – by The Guardian, The Times/Sunday Times, and The Complete University Guide. In addition to ranking, each guide also ranks universities on their strength in individual subjects which can be a more useful indicator of reputation within a particular sector. The quality of an individual degree course may not bear any relation to the overall position of the university in the international university league tables.
Create your own shortlist of universities and courses based on these priorities and use the league tables to double-check your ‘maybe’ list. Looking at league tables should not be used in place of conducting thorough research into topics such as the modules you’ll study and how you’ll be evaluated. Read some of our blogs that might interest you as well: