List of universities and higher education colleges in London

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The Senate House, the headquarters of the federal University of London

London has one of the largest concentrations of universities and higher education institutions in the world. It has 40 higher education institutions[1] (not counting foreign Universities with London branches) and has a student population of more than 400,000.[2][3] Among the institutions in London are some of the old and world-famous colleges that today make up the federal University of London, modern universities, as well as a number of smaller and often highly specialised universities and colleges. Additionally, over 45,000 students in over 180 countries follow the University of London External System, established in 1858.[4]

Major universities[edit]

King's College London, established by Royal Charter having been founded by King George IV and Duke of Wellington in 1829, is one of the two founding colleges of the University of London.
Entrance to Imperial College London

Key (lower numbers are better):

Note: Birkbeck, University of London is excluded from most university rankings because the tables are based on full-time undergraduates, and Birkbeck has only part-time undergraduate students.

Birkbeck, University of London N/A N/A N/A Yes 280 201-250
Brunel University London 77 54 52 Yes 345 301-350 401-500
City University London 18 50 40 Yes Yes Yes 314 351-400
Goldsmiths, University of London 46 54 51 Yes 421-430 301-350
Imperial College London 7 5 4 a Yes Yes 9 8 Yes Yes 22
King's College London 42 27 21 Yes 21 36 Yes Yes 50
Kingston University 88 122 108 Yes 501-550 601-800
London Metropolitan University 118 127 127 651-700 601-800
London School of Economics 12 8 3 Yes 37 25 Yes Yes 151-200
London South Bank University 107 120 115 N/A 801+
Middlesex University 74 74 78 Yes Yes 601-650 501-600
Queen Mary University of London 34 40 31 Yes 123 113 Yes 151-200
Royal Holloway, University of London 45 34 34 Yes Yes 235 173
SOAS, University of London 30 35 43 Yes 252 401-500
St George's, University of London N/A 70 44 N/A 201-250
St Mary's University, Twickenham 106 116 118 N/A N/A
University College London 14 6 10 Yes 7 15 Yes Yes 17
University of East London 115 123 126 701+ 601-800
University of Greenwich 98 107 98 701+ 601-800
University of Roehampton 90 78 69 N/A 601-800
University of the Arts London 53 109 85 N/A N/A
University of West London 96 84 105 N/A N/A
University of Westminster 112 117 101 Yes N/A 601-800

a Imperial College London, was a college of the University of London but left in 2007.

Specialised and private universities and higher education colleges[edit]

The following institutions offer British undergraduate and postgraduate courses, but are usually specialised in one or two academic fields.

Colleges which form the federal University of London are in italics

Foreign universities[edit]

A number of foreign university institutions operate in London without Royal Charters. Some are bona fide universities with their degrees validated by recognised accreditation bodies abroad or in the UK, while others are not validated at all or are validated by unrecognised accreditation agencies.[15]

Many foreign universities run study-abroad programmes based in London, but these are often restricted to students who spend the majority of their degree studying at the university campus in their own country, and are not independent university campuses. Some of the colleges offering foreign degrees in London are listed below.

University of the West of Scotland, Paisley, Hamilton, Ayr & Dumfries University of West London, Ealing and Brentford University of Westminster, London University of Winchester University of Wolverhampton University of Worcester University of York York St John University

Proposed universities[edit]

As part of legacy plans for the 2012 Olympic Games, an international university is to be built in London’s Olympic Park.[16] The new university will make use of the sporting facilities and high-tech communications infrastructure remaining after the Olympics, and will specialise in sport science, digital media and green technology.

It is likely that the new institution will either become a constituent college of the University of London (or else be run by one of the existing colleges), or another London institution such as the University of East London, Imperial College or the University of the Arts London. In addition, Loughborough and Bristol universities have expressed interest in running the institution’s sports science programmes.

There is also a strong possibility of co-operation with a foreign university, with both the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Tsinghua University, Beijing being mentioned.

The institution itself will be established before the Games, although it is only expected to move to the Olympic park in about 2015. The Government is expected to provide a subsidy but it is hoped that the majority of funding will come from the private sector.[16]

Additionally, St. Mary's University College, located in Twickenham, South-West London, was awarded full University status in January 2014.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ HEFCE : Universities and Colleges : Higher Education institutions funded by the Council
  2. ^ "All students FTE by institution and level of study 2004/05". HESA - Higher Education Statistics Agency. Retrieved 2009-12-28. 
  3. ^ "About London's Higher Education". London Higher. Retrieved 2009-12-28. 
  4. ^ "About University Of London External System". University of London. Retrieved 2009-12-28. 
  5. ^ "University guide 2017: University league table". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2016-05-23. 
  6. ^ "UK University Times Ranking 2017". London: UK Uni. Retrieved 2016-09-26. 
  7. ^ "University League Table 2017". Complete University Guide. Retrieved 2016-05-08. 
  8. ^ "University of London's Colleges and Institutes". University of London. Retrieved 2009-11-28. 
  9. ^ "AMBA accredited schools". Association MBAs (AMBA). Retrieved 2009-11-28. 
  10. ^ "EQUIS Accredited Schools". European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD). Retrieved 2009-11-28. 
  11. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2016-2017". QS/Times Higher Education. Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  12. ^ "Times Higher Education-QS World University Rankings 2016-17". QS/Times Higher Education. Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  13. ^ "Top Universities in UK 2015". Retrieved 6 October 2015. 
  14. ^ "Study Online UK - University of International Innovations". University of International Innovations. Retrieved 2016-02-11. 
  15. ^ Alderman, Geoffrey (2003-09-09). "Far from funny". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2009-11-28. 
  16. ^ a b Gourlay, Chris (2009-04-19). "University to be built in London Olympic Park". Times Online. Retrieved 2009-11-28. 

External links[edit]