THE ‘Table of Tables’ 2022: London universities rise

Oxford is sole leader of combined results of three main UK university league tables for first time

November 29, 2021
King's College London
Source: iStock

Universities in London have made gains in this year’s Times Higher Education “Table of Tables”, with four institutions in the capital featuring in the top 20 for the first time in a decade.

King’s College London, which was a new entry last year, is the biggest riser in the top 30 list, climbing eight places to 19th, after making significant progress in The Guardian and The Times league tables. UCL also climbs three places to eighth, its first top 10 position since the 2019 edition, while Imperial College London rises one place to fifth and the London School of Economics and Political Science remains in fourth.

However, Royal Holloway, University of London, the only other institution from the capital in the list, drops one place to 25th in the table, which is based on the combined results of the UK’s three main domestic university rankings: The Complete University Guide, the Guardian University Guide and the combined Times and Sunday Times’ Good University Guide.

The University of Oxford is the sole leader of the table for the first time, as the University of Cambridge falls from joint first to second. Before last year, the University of Cambridge had a nine-year outright lead at the top of the ranking.

The University of St Andrews remains in third place overall, despite making headlines for topping The Times ranking for the first time in September.

Scottish institutions continue to make progress overall, with the universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow both rising from joint 14th to 12th and 13th respectively and Heriot-Watt University joining the table for the first time since the 2016 edition.

But the University of Dundee bucks the trend, dropping out of the table after ranking joint 22nd last year. The University of the West of England and Newcastle University also fall out of the top 30.

The University of Birmingham is the biggest faller within the top 30, dropping six places to 23rd.

Alongside Heriot-Watt, the University of Chichester, Swansea University and Queen’s University Belfast are new entries this year.

Times Higher Education Table of Tables 2022: top 30

Institution 2022 rank 2021 rank Change Total points
University of Oxford 1 1= 0 89
University of Cambridge 2 1= -1 86
University of St Andrews 3 3 0 85
London School of Economics and Political Science 4 4 0 81
Imperial College London 5 6 1 77
Durham University 6 5 -1 76
University of Warwick 7 10 3 70
UCL 8 11 3 69
University of Bath 9= 8 -1 66
Loughborough University 9= 7 -2 66
Lancaster University 11 9 -2 58
University of Edinburgh 12 14= 2 56
University of Glasgow 13 14= 1 54
University of Bristol 14 12 -2 48
University of Southampton 15 18 3 45
University of Exeter 16 13 -3 44
University of Leeds 17 16 -1 42
University of York 18 19 1 38
King's College London 19 27 8 31
University of Manchester 20 20 0 29
University of Strathclyde 21 21 0 28
University of Aberdeen 22 22= 0 22
University of Birmingham 23 17 -6 20
University of Sheffield  24 28 4 18
Royal Holloway, University of London 25 24= -1 14
University of East Anglia 26 24= -2 13
University of Chichester 27= New New 10
University of Nottingham 27= 24= -3 10
Swansea University 29= New New 9
Heriot-Watt University 29= New New 9
Queen's University Belfast 30 New New 7

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 determine the positions. We make no claims for statistical rigour and acknowledge the methodological limitations.

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Reader's comments (2)

Has anyone rated via tables how universities performed and looked after their students during 20/21 and Covid-19 lockdown restrictions? Several top Unis were exceptionally poor in looking after students, particularly city-based universities. The pastoral care amongst dozens of Unis was rather contradictory to its rankings.
the table name "Table of Tables 2021" should be an error.