Birkbeck, University of London

World University Rankings 2024
Malet Street, Bloomsbury, Camden, WC1E 7HX, United Kingdom

About Birkbeck, University of London

The philanthropist George Birkbeck founded the London Mechanics’ Institute in 1823 to provide education to working class people in the capital.

In what was considered radical at the time, the Institute allowed artisans and craftsmen to learn about science, art and economics. Seven years after it first opened its doors, the Institute began to admit women - one of the first institutions in the country to do so.

By 1858 Birkbeck had become a popular choice for students who wanted a university education but who could not afford to study full-time.

Remaining integral to Birkbeck’s ethos – now part of the University of London – is the belief that higher education should be available and accessible to those from all socio-economic backgrounds.

Today, it specialises in a university education that allows students to work and build their career, or to pursue other interests while they study. Most teaching is in the evenings, although it is increasingly introducing daytime teaching.

Birkbeck is also a renowned research institution: 83 percent of its research was rated "world-leading" or "internationally excellent" in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.

Birkbeck provides an extensive range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses and tuition from its business and law schools and faculties of science, and humanities and social sciences that attract students from London, the wider UK and over 100 countries across the world.

Its main campus in the heart of Bloomsbury is located close to other leading London universities, world-class research resources, as well as museums and art galleries, including the British Museum, the British Library and the Wellcome Collection.

Birkbeck’s Careers and Enterprise service works with students to help them make the connection between their experience, education and future ambitions.

Among Birkbeck’s most notable alumni is Ramsay MacDonald, the first Labour Prime Minister, the poet and playwright TS Eliot, social reformer Annie Besant, and Isaac Rosenberg, the First World War poet who was killed in the battle of the Somme.

Explore rankings data for Birkbeck, University of London

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Key statistics

  • 41%
    Percentage of International Students
  • 12.5
    No. of students per staff
  • 57 : 43
    Student Ratio of Females to Males
  • 24%
    Proportion of ISR Publication
  • 7,610
    Number of FTE Students
Based on data collected for the (1) 2024 World University Rankings

Subjects taught at Birkbeck, University of London

  • Arts & humanities

    • History, Philosophy & Theology
    • Languages, Literature & Linguistics
    • Archaeology
    • Art, Performing Arts & Design
  • Education

    • Education
  • Physical sciences

    • Physics & Astronomy
    • Mathematics & Statistics
    • Geology, Environmental, Earth & Marine Sciences
  • Social sciences

    • Politics & International Studies (incl Development Studies)
    • Geography
    • Sociology
    • Communication & Media Studies
  • Business & economics

    • Accounting & Finance
    • Economics & Econometrics
    • Business & Management
  • Life sciences

    • Biological Sciences
  • Computer science

    • Computer Science
  • Law

    • Law
  • Psychology

    • Psychology