From education to employment

New Ranking Reveals Best UK Universities To Help Make the Decision Easier for Students


With exam season almost over and results day looming, young people all across the country are preparing to face their biggest decision yet – choosing the right university. 

To help provide a sense of direction, the online student job board, RateMyPlacement, reveals the top universities in the UK by ranking The Times’ Top 100 universities based on a multitude of criteria including student satisfaction, graduate prospects, accommodation costs, costs of food and drink, local transport costs as well as the local nightlife.

Top 10 Universities in the UK

The insightful new data index reveals St Andrews in Scotland is the best UK university, scoring full marks across the board.  This was followed by the University of Exeter and the University of Leeds. Across the individual categories, St Andrews also scored the best for student satisfaction and the general level of crime. 

1University of St Andrews
2University of Exeter
3University of Leeds
4University of Sheffield
5Loughborough University
6Newcastle University
7Imperial College London
8University of Aberdeen
9Cardiff University
10University of Cambridge

London proved the best location for graduate prospects, the top university for such being St George’s University which scored full points. This was followed by Imperial College London (96.84) and the London School of Economics (94.74). 

Staffordshire University, in Stoke-on-Trent, has the most affordable accommodation – costing an average of £80 per week. This is followed by the University of Huddersfield (£81 per week) and Teesside University (£88 per week). 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the top two most expensive universities for accommodation were based in London. LSE was the most expensive at £261 per week, followed by the University of Greenwich (£238 per week) and then Edinburgh (£222 per week).

Co-founder of RateMyPlacement, Oliver Sidwell, comments,

“The looming UCAS deadline on the 25th of January adds extra pressure to young people as their new year comes with big, new decisions. With contradicting articles and advice, it can be difficult for students to find the university that best suits them. 

This index helps take all factors into account to help inform applicants’ decisions impartially whether they’re prioritising their studies, budgets or their extracurricular activities, there’s a university to meet their needs in this list. It’s crucial applicants take all factors into account to consider where they’re choosing to relocate to and think about what’s best for them, personally.”

For more information on the best UK universities based on differing priorities view the full table here.

Data Methodology

Raw data can be found here with sources linked.

We looked at the Times Top 100 Universities and ranked them according to the following factors: 

  • Times Ranking
  • Student satisfaction
  • Graduate prospects
  • Average weekly accommodation costs 
  • Cost of an ‘inexpensive’ meal
  • Cost of a pint (domestic beer)
  • Cost of a one-way ticket on local transport
  • Cost of a monthly fitness membership
  • Total no. of nightclubs
  • Average costs for meals, drinks, transport and fitness memberships, as well as level of crime indicators, were extracted from here.
  • Average weekly cost of student accommodation was taken from here.
  • Student satisfaction scores were taken from here.
  • Graduate prospects scores were taken from here.
  • Total no. of night clubs were taken from here.

Related Articles