Top Sight Tours Group

27 May

Quick Guide to London’s Top Universities

Looking for a uni or just want to see the beautiful and historic spots of London’s higher education? After a great Top Sights Tour, Check out some of these beautiful London Universities that are helping to shape the future of the country. 

City, University of London

City, University of London (formerly City University London) is the 10th highest-ranked UK university, coming 351st in the QS World University Rankings® 2019. It’s named to reflect its close relationship with The City – London’s historic financial district, also known as the square mile. It prides itself on having strong links with leading companies in this competitive district, ranging from giants of the financial services sector to media companies and medical research centers. It also marks its special links with the city by having the Lord Mayor of London as its Chancellor.

City, University of London offers a broad spectrum of courses, but is perhaps best known for its Cass Business School, City Law School and the School of Health Sciences. Of almost 19,000 students, 11 percent are from EU countries other than the UK, and 27 percent are from countries outside of the EU. It became a constituent college of the University of London on September 1 2016.


Brunel University

Named after the Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Brunel University (ranked joint 332nd in the world, up 14 places) is aptly known for its engineering and design courses, but also offers a range of courses in arts, business, law, health and social sciences, information systems and sport. Again, it boasts an internationally diverse student community, with more than 12,550 students from over 110 countries.

All courses are based at Brunel’s campus in Uxbridge, West London, which is just under an hour from the city center on the London Underground. As a campus-based university, it provides a complete student community, with accommodation, libraries, bars, restaurants, a sports center and green spaces all within walking distance.


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Birkbeck College, University of London

Birkbeck College, University of London is ranked joint 306th in the world this year and is the only one of these top universities in London that allows students to complete full-length degrees during evening courses, with all the visa and loan privileges of daytime study.

Birkbeck is again located in the Bloomsbury area, close to UCL and SOAS and within walking distance of many central London attractions, and it schedules its programs with the aim of allowing students to complete a day’s work before attending class.

Many students study part-time, taking advantage of the university’s flexible ethos, and are enrolled on a wide range of programs at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.


School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS)

SOAS is ranked 288th in the world in 2019, up eight places from last year. The university is focused on the languages, cultures and societies of Asia, Africa and the Near and Middle East – the only institution in Europe specializing in this field. Just over half of its students come from outside the UK, representing 133 countries.

Like UCL and Birkbeck, SOAS is in the Bloomsbury area of London, known for its attractive garden squares, history of artistic and intellectual inhabitants (the Bloomsbury Group), and high concentration of academic resources – including the extensive Senate House Library and the British Library (the UK’s national library).

Founded in 1916 as the School of Oriental Studies, SOAS now offers more than 350 undergraduate degree combinations and over 115 postgraduate programs.


Royal Holloway, University of London

While many of the top universities in London are centrally located, some are a little further out. Though still within the London area, Royal Holloway, University of London is actually in the nearby town of Egham – less than an hour’s train journey from central London.

Up 23 places to rank 236th in the world this year, Royal Holloway is another global university, home to almost 10,000 students, of which nearly 20 percent are from outside the EU.

It offers courses in a broad range of subjects, and is particularly strong in arts and humanities (it’s ranked joint 14th for performing arts in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2018).

Perfect for students looking to combine a more suburban experience with the choice of popping into the city for nights out or day trips, Royal Holloway offers one of the most beautiful campuses in the UK.

Queen Mary, University of London


Also improving its position in this year’s ranking is Queen Mary, University of London (QMUL), up eight places to rank 119th in 2019. QMUL offers teaching and research across a wide range of subjects, including medicine and dentistry at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry. Of QMUL’s 25,332 students, around 4,000 are completing joint programs overseas in China, Greece and France.

The university’s main campus is in Mile End, set along the Regent’s Canal and close to many of the recently regenerated and increasingly trendy parts of the East End – including the curry houses of Brick Lane, art galleries of Whitechapel and Hoxton, and hipster-filled bars and music venues of Shoreditch.

.London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)


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The UK’s only university specializing in the social sciences, LSE is ranked 38th in the world in 2019. It gets an even higher position in many of the individual subject rankings, reflecting its role as a world-leading pioneer in subjects such as anthropology, politics, sociology, law and accounting.

Another highly international institution, LSE boasts more than 100 languages spoken on campus. It also occupies a location close to the heart of the city in the Chancery Lane area, historically associated with the legal professions. Just to the north of the river, it’s within walking distance of the British Library, and close to the cultural institutions of Trafalgar Square and the nightlife and theaters of the West End.

King’s College London


King’s College London is one of the largest and oldest colleges of the University of London collegiate, and is ranked 31st in the world this year. Again, this comprehensive research-led university is a popular choice for international students, who comprise 37 percent of the student body (including students from the rest of the EU), while postgraduates make up nearly 40 percent of its 29,600 enrolments.

It has a particularly good reputation for courses in the humanities, law and the sciences, including health sciences. Claiming to be “the most central university in London”, King’s College London has five London campuses, four of which are fairly close together by the River Thames, near iconic landmarks such as Tower Bridge, the London Eye and Big Ben.


University College London (UCL)

UCL went down slightly in this year’s QS World University Rankings and is now placed 10th in the world.  The university is extremely popular with international students, who account for more than 40 percent of its student body. A multidisciplinary institute, it covers a broad spectrum of subjects (this is one of the main points of difference between UCL and Imperial), and has a high percentage of postgraduate students – around 53 percent.

Its faculties and teaching hospitals are all located in the heart of central London, close to the British Library and a cluster of other leading London universities – SOAS and Birkbeck are both close neighbors. The main Gower Street campus is also just a short walk from the party atmosphere of Soho and the shopping district centered on Oxford Circus.


Imperial College London

Imperial College London overtakes UCL as the highest-ranked university in London this year, retaining its position of eighth in the world. This science and technology-focused institution is known for its leadership in engineering and natural sciences, as well as having a prestigious business school and one of the UK’s largest medical faculties.

As is the case with UCL, Imperial College London has a strong global appeal, reflected in very high international student numbers (around half of the student population). Its main campus is in South Kensington, not far from the city center. Students will find themselves close to the huge green space of Hyde Park, the historic concert venue Royal Albert Hall, luxury superstore Harrods, and several of the city’s biggest museums.


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