THE ‘Table of Tables’ 2020: Bath joins top 10

Cambridge leads combined results of three main UK university league tables for ninth year running

October 30, 2019
Source: Alamy

The University of Bath has joined the top 10 of this year’s Times Higher Education “Table of Tables”, while the universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow have also made progress.

Bath climbs three places to rank eighth in the latest edition of the table – its highest position since 2015 – largely owing to a strong performance in The Guardian’s ranking. UCL drops out of the top 10, falling three places to 13th.

Meanwhile, the University of Glasgow (15th), University of Edinburgh (20th) and Royal Holloway, University of London (22nd) are the biggest risers this year. Each institution advances by six places in the table, which is based on the combined results of the UK’s three main domestic university rankings. 

The University of Manchester also makes strong gains, rising four places to joint 18th, alongside the University of Southampton.

The University of East Anglia (joint 23th) and University of Surrey (29th) are the biggest fallers, each dropping by nine places. Surrey dropped by six places last year.

The top seven places are unchanged since last year. The University of Cambridge takes first position for the ninth consecutive year, with the institution claiming maximum points after topping the latest editions of The Complete University Guide, the rankings published by The Guardian and the combined Times and Sunday Times’ Good University Guide.

Despite the University of St Andrews outranking the University of Oxford in The Guardian’s league table for the first time this year, the Scottish institution remains in third place. But there is now just one point between the two universities, down from five points last year.

Elsewhere in the top 10, the London School of Economics and Political Science drops one place to ninth and the University of Warwick falls two places to 10th.

Two new institutions feature in the top 30 table this year: the University for the Creative Arts and Harper Adams University, sharing 25th place.

Meanwhile, the University of Sussex and the University of Aberdeen drop out of the table this year.

Times Higher Education Table of Tables 2020: top 30

Institution 2020 rank 2019 rank Change Total points
University of Cambridge 1 1 0 90
University of Oxford 2 2 0 86
University of St Andrews 3 3 0 85
Imperial College London 4 4 0 77
Loughborough University 5 5 0 76
Durham University 6 6 0 75
Lancaster University 7 7 0 71
University of Bath 8 11 3 67
London School of Economics and Political Science 9 8= -1 64
University of Warwick 10 8= -2 63
University of Exeter 11 13 2 60
University of Leeds 12 12 0 55
UCL 13 10 -3 52
University of Birmingham 14 15 1 50
University of Glasgow 15 21 6 45
University of Bristol 16 17 1 39
University of Nottingham 17 16 -1 35
University of Southampton 18= 19 1 29
University of Manchester 18= 22 4 29
University of Edinburgh 20 26 6 27
University of York 21 18 -3 21
Royal Holloway, University of London 22 28 6 20
Nottingham Trent University 23= 25 2 19
University of East Anglia 23= 14 -9 19
University for the Creative Arts 25= New New 18
Harper Adams University 25= New New 18
Coventry University 27 24 -3 16
Lincoln University 28 29 1 14
University of Surrey 29 20 -9 13
Newcastle University 30 23 -7 12

Each year since 2008, THE has compiled a “Table of Tables” to offer a snapshot of how UK universities are viewed by national newspapers. It is calculated by giving the 30 top-ranked institutions in league tables compiled by The Good University Guide (published by The Times and The Sunday Times), The Guardian and The Complete University Guide points corresponding to their position (30 for first place, 29 for second and so on). The total scores determined the positions. We make no claims for statistical rigour and acknowledge the methodological limitations.

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