the logo

Top 15 most popular student articles of 2017

We reveal the top stories on THE Student in 2017 including general election coverage, TEF results, and university country and subject guides

Seeta Bhardwa's avatar

Seeta Bhardwa

Editor, THE Student
December 20 2017
Most popular articles of 2017


There have been many changes in higher education in 2017. The introduction of the teaching excellence framework in the UK sent shock waves through the academy as a number of prestigious universities, including the London School of Economics and Political Science and the University of Southampton were rated bronze, with the results no doubt influencing the choices that international students will make when considering which UK university to attend.

Furthermore, students were found to be real influencers in the outcome of the UK’s general election as high numbers of young people voted after Labour’s pledge to scrap tuition fees. Hence, Oxford Dictionaries choice of “youthquake” as 2017’s word of the year.

Internationally, there were just as many changes affecting students. There was the Trump administration’s travel ban, New Zealand abolished tuition fees, while Canada became a popular choice for international students. 

Meanwhile, Times Higher Education had a bumper year of rankings releases, producing more rankings than ever.

For articles to be eligible for this list, they had to be published in 2017. So without further ado, let’s explore the most popular articles of the year.

15. Why do students go to university and how do they choose which one?

Most popular articles of 2017

Education consultancy company Hobsons polled 6,000 students to find out why they went to university and how they made their choice. Some of the most popular concerns were whether a university offered high-quality teaching, its scholarship provision and how the institution performed in rankings. 

14. What is the TEF? Results of the teaching excellence framework

Most popular articles of 2017

2017 saw the first teaching excellence framework (TEF), which was introduced by the UK government as a way to assess the quality of teaching in universities in England and some universities from Scotland and Wales. In terms of how students can use the TEF, it can act as another tool to help them decide where to go to university. 

13. Top 10 university hacks from some of the UK’s most successful students and graduates


Most popular articles in 2017

Some of the most successful students and graduates including YouTubers, online business owners and Olympians share their top hacks for getting through university with tips on time management, avoiding procrastination and cooking a tasty meal. 

12. The International Baccalaureate versus A levels

The most popular student articles of 2017

Admissions officers compared how the International Baccalaureate prepared students for university and the future, compared with A levels. There was a stark difference between the two, with the IB scoring higher for global outlook, while A levels excelled for “in-depth subject expertise”.

11. Where could students impact the 2017 general election?

Most popular student articles in 2017

Put together by THE data analysts, it’s no surprise that our feature and interactive map of students’ power to sway the vote in the UK’s general election in June made its way into the top 15. 

10. What can you do with a geography degree?

Most popular articles of 2017

While we have guides for many different subjects including engineering, sociology and performing arts, our geography guide was the clear winner in 2017. It helpfully outlines course entry requirements, what a geography degree entails and the career paths open to you after graduation. 

9. Top 50 student accommodation halls in the UK 

Most popular student articles of 2017

Where you stay at university is pretty important. This research into the best student accommodation halls in the UK involved using reviews on StudentCrowd and was widely shared across social media, too. 

8. Top 10 most beautiful universities in the US

Most popular student articles of 2017

It turns out that many of you love a good picture-heavy post and this article listing the most beautiful universities in the US fit the bill perfectly. On a side note, this was also a pretty popular article on our Instagram page

7. International student table 2017: top 200 universities

Most popular articles of 2017

This table of the top 200 universities with the highest percentage of international students proved a big hit in April. The table throws up some interesting results such as the fact that three of the universities in the top five are under 30 years old, or that 16 of the universities in the top 200 are in London. 

6. Best universities for graduate jobs: Global University Employability Ranking 2017

Most popular student articles of 2017

Despite being online for only a couple of months, this ranking of the best universities for employability still made its way into the top 10 along with many of the specific articles for each country, such as the best universities for employability in the UK, US and Australia.

5. Best universities for medicine 

most popular articles of 2017

Every year THE also produces a series of subject rankings to help students decide which international universities are the best for their chosen degree. The highest number of students consulted our medicine ranking but honourable mentions should also go to the computer science, life sciences and business rankings.

4. THE Student Experience Survey 2017 results

Most popular student articles of 2017

This year’s THE Student Experience Survey saw Harper Adams University take the top spot in only its second year of eligibility. This was also the first year that we published tables for the seven areas that students rated, and many of these tables were also very widely read. Some of the most popular tables covered accommodation, social life and student welfare.

3. The world’s best small universities 2017

Most popular student articles 2017

For many of you it seems, the smaller the better when it comes to universities. This cut of the THE World University Rankings data highlights institutions with fewer than 5,000 students that are delivering the highest standards in teaching and learning. We asked students from some of these universities to submit blogs explaining just why they loved studying at a small institution. 

2. The best university cities of 2017

Most popular student articles of 2017

What are the top student cities in the world? This was something that you clearly wanted to know the answer to. While many of the usual suspects such as London, Paris and New York were present, there were also some surprise entries including Seoul, Copenhagen and Moscow.

1. Best universities in...

Most popular student articles of 2017

Once again, our most popular articles on THE Student are our suite of “best universities in...” stories. Taken from our THE World University Rankings data, these pages offer an insight into the best universities in a particular country with a small profile on the top five universities. The articles that you were the most interested in:

    1. Best universities in the UK
    2. Best universities in Europe
    3. Best universities in Canada
    4. Best universities in the United States
    5. Best universities in Germany
    6. Best universities in Australia
    7. Best universities in France 


Read more: studying overseas: guide to Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA

sticky sign up

Register free and enjoy extra benefits