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University of Reading

2016 League Table Ranking 29
2016 Overall Score 783
View the 2016 league tables
Entry Standards 371 Help
Entry Standards
The average UCAS tariff score of new students entering the University.

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Student-Staff Ratio 14.2 Help
Student-Staff Ratio
The average staffing levels at the University.

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Research Quality 3.03 Help
Research Quality
A measure of the quality of the research undertaken in the University.

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Academic Services Spend 1,277 Help
Academic Services Spend
A guide to how much the University spends on supporting services such as libraries and IT.

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Student Satisfaction 4.10 Help
Student Satisfaction
A guide to how satisfied students are with the quality of teaching they receive.

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Facilities Spend 397 Help
Facilities Spend
A guide to how much the University spends on supporting facilities such as the careers service, health and counselling services and sport facilities.

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Graduate Prospects 71.5 Help
Graduate Prospects
A guide to the employability of graduates on completion of their courses at the University.

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Degree Completion 92.3 Help
Degree Completion
The proportion of students expected to successfully complete their studies and gain a degree from the University.

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Good Honours 76.2 Help
Good Honours
The percentage of graduates achieving a first or upper second class honours degree – the class of degree achieved can impact a graduate’s employment prospects.

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Green Score 47.6 Help
Green Score
This environmental & ethical ranking of the University is provided courtesy of the People & Planet Green League - the only comprehensive and independent green ranking of every UK university. Choosing a greener university can reduce your carbon footprint and improve your job prospects in a global low-carbon economy.

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  • The University of Reading is one of the UK's leading research-intensive universities and is in the top 1% worldwide. We offer an outstanding experience for all of our students – inspiring students academically and equipping everyone for their next step after graduation, whether it be work or further study.
  • We're a tight, bustling community where our students can make a big impact. We have high expectations of everyone, and help them reach their full potential.
  • We offer over 200 flexible courses, teaching of the highest calibre, and a multitude of opportunities, from studying abroad to learning languages to undertaking work placements.
  • People often comment on the friendly and vibrant atmosphere here at Reading. It’s a place to meet new people from around the world and to build friendships that last a lifetime. 
  • There is a huge range of societies, sports clubs and volunteering opportunities to get involved with, alongside a busy social calendar organised by Reading University Students’ Union. From the beautiful campus the town centre is only a short walk away, and London is just half an hour by train. The possibilities are limitless.


  • The University of Reading boasts over 150 years of history, with origins as a University of Oxford extension college.
  • The original Schools of Art and Science were established in 1860 and 1870.
  • The University received its Royal Charter in 1926; the only university to do so between the two world wars.
  • In 1947 the university purchased the beautiful Whiteknights campus, the former estate of the Marquess of Blandford.
  • In 2008, the University merged with Henley Management College to create the Henley Business School as a key part of the University.

Location and Transport

  • Reading is only 30 minutes from central London and 40 minutes from Heathrow.
  • The University offers the best of all worlds in terms of location: a safe green campus, a buzzing town on the doorstep, and London close by.
  • Reading is perfectly placed for strong employer links: it lies at the heart of the Thames Valley in south east England, and has the fastest-growing economy in England.
  • Reading town centre is within walking distance of the University’s Whiteknights and London Road campuses.
  • Buses between town and campus run up to every five minutes, 24/7.
  • From the recently expanded mainline rail station in the town centre, trains run from Reading throughout the UK.
  • Reading sits beside the M4 motorway, which connects London with South Wales. International airports Heathrow and Gatwick are also within easy reach.

Entry Standards

A-Level and GCSE Requirements

Student Mix

The 13,595 students enrolled in the academic year 2013/14 comprise:

Level of study
Mode of study
Full Time
Part Time
Student gender
  • There is a good mix of home and overseas students, with 17,000 students from over 150 different countries.
  • There is a high application to places ratio (7 to 1), reflecting Reading's popularity.
  • The male/female split is 0.8:1.

Course Flexibility

  • We offer more than 200 courses, in arts, humanities, business, social science and science. 
  • Our degree programmes are designed to give you more choice in what you study and how you study it.
  • The modular structure of our courses means you can specialise in the areas that interest you most, while still developing core subject knowledge. 
  • Many joint degrees are available, so if you are interested in two related subjects, why not see if you can combine them?
  • Most degree programmes allow study abroad, so you could spend between a term and a year of your degree at one of our numerous partner institutions. 
  • For more information on our courses visit:

Teaching Standards

  • At the University of Reading, you’ll enjoy the very best education, delivered by academics with a rare passion for their subject, backed by a range of outstanding resources.
  • Our focus on cutting-edge research – covering subjects from climate change to heart disease – not only has a direct impact on the wider world, but also impacts on your learning. If our academics make a discovery one day, you’ll hear about it in the lecture theatre the next day.
  • There is one to one academic support available when you need it.

Research Standards

  • 98% of University of Reading research is internationally recognised according to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014. 78% of our research is classed as internationally excellent and 27% of our research is world leading. This confirms the our place as a world-leading research-intensive university.
  • The REF places the University of Reading 19th in the UK by research intensity (a measure of quality adjusted by the proportion of researchers submitted), and 27th in the UK by research power (out of 154 submitted institutions). Research power recognises both the quality and quantity of research submitted into the exercise.

Academic Strengths

  • We have won the Queen's Anniversary Prize four times: for work on early modern staging, meteorology, archaeology and typographic research.
  • Our Department of Meteorology was awarded a prestigious Regius Professorship by HM The Queen in 2013. The Department is recognised as one of the most outstanding of its kind in the world.
  • Key thematic research strengths in the five areas of: environment; food; health; prosperity and resilience; and heritage, creativity and values.
  • Specific areas of strengths as recognised in the national Research Excellence Framework 2014 include: agriculture; food science; meteorology; environmental science; architecture, the built environment and planning; business and management; typography; archaeology; and classics.

Rankings by subject:

Student Facilities

  • One of the best things about the University of Reading is campus life – your chance to enjoy a safe and beautiful environment and a community atmosphere, with everything you want on the doorstep. But step off campus and there’s even more to discover: a buzzing town, with great nightlife and world-class shops; historic towns and stunning English countryside in easy reach; and the many attractions of London just half an hour away by train.
  • Our main Whiteknights campus is set in 130 hectares of beautiful parkland. It’s the real heart of University life: a green and welcoming place in which to study, live and relax, with a true sense of community and everything you need on your doorstep.

Campus facilities include:

  • Free wifi right across campus and halls
  • Study areas – our lecture halls, classrooms, IT suits and the library are all within easy reach of each other
  • Halls – most first years live in halls, located either on campus or very nearby
  • A large central Library which is undergoing a spectacular refurbishment
  • A wide range of shops - The general store is the largest student union shop in the UK, selling everything from stationery to food. The Student Union building at the centre of campus includes a bookshop, oriental food store and hairdresser, along with mail and binding services.
  • The Student Union is also home to Café Mondial, Mojo’s bar and our award-winning nightclub, 3sixty.
  • The Reading Film Theatre is also on campus showing a range of independent, art-house and foreign language films (subtitled in English) as well as the occasional blockbuster.
  • Places to eat – you’ll find a wide range of places to grab a bite to eat or a coffee on campus, including Dol.cHe Vita, our modern espresso bar and Index Café, which serves great coffee and fresh leaf tea in the Henley Business School.
  • Health services - the university medical practice and dental surgery are a short walk from campus and you can register quickly and easily on campus in your first week.
  • Safety and security - we have a number of initiatives to keep you safe, both in halls and on campus. This includes a chaperone service to keep you safe when walking across campus at night. Regular security patrols and a dedicated emergency number mean you can relax and concentrate on your studies.

If you need to speak to someone about any issue at all – from practical needs and questions, to making the adjustment to living away from home, to worries about missing a deadline – there are various people you can contact, including:

  • Your personal tutor, who can offer you private, one-to-one support and advice from the moment you arrive
  • The student advice centre, which has a helpdesk right in the centre of campus with trained staff available every weekday.
  • Your hall staff wardens, who are friendly, experienced and always nearby
  • A range of additional support to help you apply and get settled in if you’re an international student, plus sector-leading support to develop your English language skills.
  • Maths support – Many courses draw on maths skills that you might not have used since school. If you’re feeling rusty, the dedicated Mathematics Support Centre can help with numeracy and a range of maths topics, one-to-one or via email.

The library has recently undergone a huge refurbishment. It is open 24 hours a day during term time, and gives you access to:

  • More than 1 million books.
  • Over 29,000 e-journals.
  • A fully equipped IT suite.
  • Group discussion spaces.
  • Quiet and silent areas.

Disability Services

  • If you have a disability, long-term medical condition, mental health issue or learning difficulty, our Disability Advisory Service can provide you with confidential advice and guidance at every stage, from now right through to the completion of your studies.
  • If you have specific questions you can contact the Disability Advisory Service by emailing

Students' Union

  • Reading University Students’ Union (RUSU) is run by students, for students, and provides facilities, entertainment and opportunities to help you make the most of your time at university.
  • RUSU is one of the country’s Top 10 students’ unions (National Student Survey 2014) with 84.6% overall satisfaction.
  • The Students’ Union champions your voice, ensuring all students are represented and leading campaigns on the things that are important to you.
  • RUSU runs over 100 societies and 50 sports clubs, as well as offering hundreds of inspiring volunteering projects and a student run newspaper, radio station and online TV channel.
  • It is also home to Café Mondial, Mojo’s Bar and our award-winning nightclub 3sixty, bookshop, oriental food store, hairdresser, letting agent and mail and binding services.


  • We're proud to have several Olympians among our alumni – but you don't have to be a serious athlete to get involved in sport at the University of Reading.
  • Whether you're an expert or a total novice, you'll find the ideal training session or team for you – in sports from archery to Zumba. If you just want to exercise or keep fit, we offer a gym and multiple exercise classes. With over 50 sports clubs run by the Student Union Sports Federation, you can choose to play just for fun or compete in the BUCS (inter-university) leagues and tournaments.

Our sports facilities include:

  • The University SportsPark, which includes a state-of-the-art fitness studio, specialist exercise studios, squash courts and a large multi-purpose sports hall.
  • SoccerPark – our purpose-built floodlit pitches, equipped with the latest third-generation surface.
  • Football, rugby, lacrosse, hockey and cricket pitches.
  • Tennis and netball courts.
  • A synthetic turf pitch for football and hockey.
  • Sports Pavilion with modern changing facilities for five football pitches.
  • A world-class boathouse facility on the River Thames, a 15-minute bike ride from campus. The boathouse includes a rowers’ fitness gym, with professional coaching led by our Director of Rowing.

Our Sports Scholarship Programme and Sports Academy offer free access to facilities and provide financial assistance for training and competitions.

Recent/Prospective New Builds

  • You can benefit from a range of different accommodation types to suit all budgets, with many of the smartly-furnished modern rooms organised into 10-person flats, with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities. A smaller number of premium en-suite rooms are also available.
  • The Bridges hall accommodation development was completed in 2014 marking the final stage in a £276 million investment in Reading's student accommodation. This follows the opening of Mackinder and Stenton halls in 2010, and Childs hall in 2012.

Availability of Part-Time Work

  • There is a dedicated job shop for Reading students on campus which advertises part-time vacancies. The job shop is open term time from 10am – 4pm.
  • Many of the vacancies advertised offer great CV points and development opportunities as well as the chance to earn money.
  • Plenty of work is available on campus.
  • The University Job Shop is part of The Careers, Placement and Experience Centre and is dedicated to helping students find part time and vacation work, on campus or locally in the Reading Area. Our friendly, professional staff can help you find a suitable job to match your skills and interests, and support you with applications, CVs and help prepare you for interviews.
  • Our location in the prosperous south east region means that there are many part-time jobs on offer.

Careers Guidance

Choose the University of Reading, and you’ll be encouraged to focus on your future from the moment you arrive. You’ll study a career module as part of your course – whatever course you choose. You’ll be given the chance to experience working life, through volunteering or taking a placement. And you’ll have the ongoing support of our careers team, with its outstanding links to global employers in the Reading region and beyond.

  • The University of Reading’s Careers Centre runs an extensive programme of career development workshops and recruitment events.
  • The Centre advertises a wide range of vacancies including term-time and vacation work, placements, graduate jobs and volunteering opportunities.
  • We offer one-to-one careers advice sessions and a CV checking service.
  • Our Careers Centre can also conduct mock interviews based on a job description, CV and/or application.

Notable Alumni

  • Michael Rosen – broadcaster and former Children's Laureate.
  • Cornelia Parker, OBE – sculptor and installation artist, Turner prize nominee.
  • David Watkins – designer of the London 2012 Olympics medals.
  • Jamie Cullum – jazz musician and Radio 2 presenter.
  • Linda Bennett OBE – founder of LK Bennett, Entrepreneurs’ Entrepreneur award winner 2009.
  • Professor Peter Crane – former Director of Royal Botanic gardens, Kew.
  • Nicky Kinnaird MBE – founder of Space NK cosmetics.
  • Dr David Williams - former Chief Executive of the UK Space Agency.
  • Belay Ejigu Begashaw – Earth Institute of Columbia University and former Minister of Agriculture for Ethiopia.
  • Dr Christie Peacock – former Chief Executive, FARM-Africa, and Sidai Africa founder.
  • Professor Li Shirong – President, Chartered Institute of Building, China.
  • John Simpson OBE – former Chief Editor of the Oxford English Dictionary.
  • Adrienne Cahalan - yachtswoman (first woman to break the record for the fastest time around the word in any type of boat).
  • James Cracknell OBE - rower, Olympic gold medallist.

Social Media


For further information

  • + 44 (0)118 987 5123
  • University of Reading
    PO Box 217
    RG6 6AH
UCAS Code R12

Content was accurate at the time of compilation.

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