How Important Are UK University Rankings and League Tables?

Study Feb 2, 2017

When deciding on a UK university you will very often hear that “if you do not go to a good university then there is barely any point that you go at all”. Many people will tell you that studying a course at some university that no one has ever heard of is not any good.


What if we tell you this is not true at all. There is a new major study that opposes this theory completely. But before we get into this you need to ask yourself what exactly do you think when you think of a good university in the UK. 

Is it one that requires you to have high grades? If yes then you have got it all wrong. As high grades would mean the quality of student that you are but has nothing to do with the quality of education that you will receive at the university. Now you ask what about League Tables UK, well it stands true for the same as well. (Leagues Tables show you rankings of universities as well according to their performances) Different students are always looking to gain something different from the desired course or the so-called good university. 

SGB Your first few weeks NEW000108-01_0

Some do look at Oxford, some look at where to study closer to home, some only are looking for part time course to get a head start in their careers, this is why good will have different meanings for different students. Though one thing that is common amongst each student is that they want to get a good job after the completion of their course. Students would not invest time going into a UK University if the job or career option that they have in mind does not pay them well, so bottom line is  get a job and one that pays you well. Some websites conducted a survey to find out who actually does get paid well and which is that job in particular.


So on an average every 3 months there has been conducted a Labour Force Survey where in 100,000 people have been quizzed with regards to their career choices and income the same generates for them. So if we take this into consideration then we learn that you are bound to earn more as soon as you finish university regardless which university you went to. The average salary of a graduate is marginally higher than a non-graduate at every stage of the career.

SGB Visiting students PAX000421-01

Also, if you are aiming to make it to the senior or top management then your likelihood of making it without a graduate degree are marginally reduced. According to statistics however you have a 60% chance of making it to the top management with a graduate degree. Better yet you get paid more as well.


The other important fact to consider is that in the UK there are only so little universities where the brand name will matter more than how well you did at university.


Those of few who end up going to universities like Oxford, Cambridge, LSE or the likes of them earn a little more than the rest of the graduates but it is always more than what you make if you never went to university at all. This brings us back to the fact that what you do at university and how well you do has more to do with a bright future than where you went to study. 


There are always more important things that determine what job you get and how much you earn. If you consider the graduates who come out of universities that are well ranked in League Tables UK, you will know that the grades required to get into the same requires more grades which in the end help them in earning more. But think a little deeper; good universities require good grades so ultimately it is the quality of a student and their abilities more than which university they went to.

Geography here plays a part too, lets say if the area that you are finally looking to settle down has more unemployment than other places then graduates will get hit alike, however this is true that they are less likely to get as affected as the non-graduates.


After universities and their rankings another important factor to consider is what course you want to pursue. It is no secret that those who pursue maths, science, law, economics and engineering get good jobs and get paid more. But again what are good courses? How for those who take up dancing are not looking to get rich doing so but that does not measure their success either. Students still take arts and they still make a career out of it. So what we are saying here is that there are more ways than one to measure success.


The course you study also makes a difference. A separate study recently showed how courses including medicine (no surprises there), maths, economics, law and engineering were all good for earnings.

But that just brings us back to what we mean by ‘good’. Very few people study a dance degree because it’ll make them rich. There are more ways to measure success.


You also have to consider what course fits you best and then look at universities that are offering those courses and what are their course wise rankings as well. Ultimately you have to decide on a university that fits you, not going by everyone else’s idea of a good university. 

Once you find a university that fits you and a course that ignites your passion then you are bound to do well. If you do well then you will be able to make a difference and set yourself apart from other graduates when looking or applying for a job. Your university grades, your passion for the field, your knowledge and ability will be weighed above the brand of your university. It is important to remember that going to a university is important as you will always have a cut above the non-graduates at any given time and your prospects of a good job will increase manifolds too.

So now that it is deciding time we hope this will help you in deciding your university and you will look at plenty more than just the UK University Rankings, UK League Tables or Russell Group Universities.


We wish you plenty of luck and we hope you are able to make the university experience the ultimate one of your lifetime. is the world’s leading platform to book student accommodation and serves over 1.1 million times to students from over 166 countries every year.

Also read: Know Your Courses And Their UK University Rankings

Picture Courtesy- Google