The Top 5 Universities in the UK

  • Serial Ululer
  • Pioneer

I'm basing my ranking on The Guardian's  University league table 2011:

Let's take a closer look at the current Top 5.

1) Oxford: Everyone knows it's a neverending battle between the prestigious Oxford and Cambridge for acknowledgement as the UK's No. 1 University, and it looks like this year Oxford has just taken the lead.

Sex ratio (M:F): 53:47Full-time undergraduates: 11,332
Applications per place: 5Points range: 340-360
Flunk rate: 2.6%Unemployed after 6mths: 7.4%
Booze Index: £2.45
Av. housing cost per week: £101.58
Av. debt per year: £5,202Access fund: £427,967
Cost of living: V.expensive


  • Beautiful city
  • 39 colleges and seven private halls, all with their own quirks and characteristics.
  • In recent years, Oxford have been trouncing Cambridge at the top end of the student sports league   
  • Almost everyone can live in College for at least two years, which is far cheaper than renting in town
  •  Each College has its own JCR – a mini-union that co-ordinates ents and plenty of societies


  • The clubbing scene is practically non-existant.
  • ^ Not much time for going out anyway...
  •  City housing is expensive


2) Cambridge                                             

Sex Ratio (M:F) 51:49
Full-time undergraduates: 11,826
Applications per place: 4Points range: 340-360
Flunk rate: 1.3%Unemployed after 6mths: 4.8%
Booze Index: £1.80Av. housing cost per week: £90
Av. debt per year: £5,716
Access fund: £310,000
Cost of living: V. expensive 


  • Beautiful city
  • Contains some of the best academic resources around – the Uni Library is one of six copyright libraries in the country
  • You get an MA with every honours degree!
  • Like Oxford, each College’s JCR (mini-union) looks after its own students' welfare and entertainment
  • 8 week terms!


  • Its student union is one of the poorest and has the lowest profile.
  • Intense academic lifestyle


3) Warwick

Sex Ratio (M:F): 50:50

 Full-time undergraduates: 11,203

Applications per place: 9

Points range: 300-420
Flunk rate: 3.6%Unemployed after 6mths: 10.8%
Booze Index: £1.84Av. housing cost per week: £73.81
Av. debt per year: £6,451Access fund: £355,850
Cost of living: Reasonable


  • With more clubs than any other university and a jam-packed social calendar, students aren’t short of something to fill their spare time with
  • The University has the largest Art Centre outside London
  • Brand new student union has just been built, including a new pub, bars and clubs
  • Great Sports facilities
  • With housing for all, first years have no need to leave campus
  • The campus environment, or 'bubble' as it is often referred to, creates a feeling of a close-knit community
  • Second and third years get to live in the beautiful Royal Leamington Spa


  • Leamington Spa is a good 30 minute bus ride away from campus, and the town of Coventry (which is much closer) is otherwise known as Chaventry...
  • 'The Bubble' can get a little claustrophobic and is not to everyone's taste

4) St Andrews

Sex Ratio (M:F) 60:40
Full-time undergraduates: 5,757
Applications per place: 10Average UCAS entry points: 310
Flunk rate: 4.8%Unemployed after 6mths: 7.9%
Booze Index: £1.84Av. housing cost per week: £84.64

Average debt per year: 3,476

Cost of Living: Expensive

Access Fund: 


  • Sandy beaches, rocky coast and glorious countryside make St Andrews a particuarly scenic location 
  • University buildings are also reflect the area’s heritage with some architecture dating as far back as the 15th century.
  • The student body are a close-knit community and on arrival undergrads acquire ‘student families’ who offer academic guidance 
  • All first years are guaranteed halls and self-catering kitchens come complete with dishwashers!
  • Excellent sports facilities
  • If you're interested in Golf, this is certainly the place for you, with 7 golf courses in the local vicinity


  • Unfortunately, golf is about all there is to do in this tiny little town... Students make up a third of its population, and there are no actual clubs.


5) UCL

Sex Ratio (M:F): 48:52Full-time undergraduates: 12,192
Applications per place: n/aPoints range: 240-360
Flunk rate: 7.6%Unemployed after 6mths: 7.2%
Booze Index: £1.75Av. housing cost per week: £123.58
Av. debt per year: £2,971Access fund: £441,972
Cost of living: V. expensive


  • There'd never be a dull moment with diverse London on your doorstep
  • The SU’s has 8 lively bars and the Bloomsbury Theatre attracts big professional names as well as student productions
  • Sport has a high profile
  • Reputation for academic excellence accross a wide range of subjects


  • Living and accommodation costs are sky high, as expected in central London
  • Acommodation is scattered around London and there is no campus or community feel


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