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St Andrews regains third place as Scottish universities see gains across the board in TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk 2020 University League Tables #cug2020

1 May 2019

St Andrews campus
The University of St Andrews is at an all-time
high in the 2020 CUG Main Table

St Andrews (third) remains the highest ranked Scottish university in TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk 2020 league tables, published today (Wednesday 1 May 2019), regaining the two places it lost last year.

In the main University League Table, Edinburgh (=16th) rises seven places, while Glasgow (18th) jumps six, meaning Scotland’s top three universities all appear in the top 20 of the Main Table. 

Other Scottish universities are also on the rise. Edinburgh Napier (86th) improves 15 places, West of Scotland (104th) ten places and Queen Margaret climbs seven to 68th. Glasgow Caledonian also places higher in this year’s table, moving from 85th to =77th.

Aberdeen (29th) drops one place but remains in the top 30 after its climb of 12 places last year. Robert Gordon (85th), Stirling (43rd) and Abertay (103rd) are others to fall with drops of two, three and four respectively.

Scotland again records the highest average Entry Standards, while St Andrews takes the top spot for Student Satisfaction in the whole of the UK. St Andrews also comes fifth for Good Honours (either a first-class or upper second-class honours degree) while Edinburgh ranks seventh.

Nationally, Graduate Prospects continue to rise year-on-year, with the average score for the UK now at 75.5, up from 73.0 last year. Scotland as a whole is above the average at 78.2, with 10 of the 14 Scottish universities scoring above average. Glasgow ranks highest for Graduate Prospects (85.4) with Glasgow Caledonian the lowest (72.1). 

Dr Bernard Kingston, Chairman of TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk, commented: “The evidence is clear; the increased emphasis, including funding, on employability and career planning within academic departments and student services is bearing fruit.

“Many institutions now have this as a core element of their strategic plans with the introduction of innovative programmes of subject-specific careers events focussed on embedding and signposting graduate destinations.

“This is being supported through increased links to alumni and outside professionals leading to higher-skilled work experience. Such developments have been strongly encouraged by prestigious annual awards from AGCAS (the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services) and the Institute of Student Employers.”

Of the 16 Scottish universities to feature in the subject tables, all but Edinburgh Napier appear in a subject top ten and five top at least one subject table. No other region can boast having as many different universities in top tens.

Glasgow performs well, appearing in 43 tables, making the top ten 28 times and coming first in seven. St Andrews features in 24 subject tables, appearing in 21 top tens and tops four. St Andrews and Glasgow are two of five institutions in the UK to be top of more than two subject tables.

Edinburgh, Dundee (31st), and Strathclyde (39th) are the only other Scottish universities to come top of a subject table, with one each.

Last year’s improvement gave the region 19 top spots. However, this year, only 14 subjects had a Scottish institution in the number one position. Strathclyde continues to appear in 32 subject tables and 16 top tens, but only topped one, compared to seven last year. 

For the fourth year running, TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk has published a ranking of specialist arts, drama and music institutions, with 12 colleges and conservatoires. Scotland has two institutions in the table. The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland has fallen four places to sixth in the table, while the Glasgow School of Art has jumped two places to tenth.

Simon Emmett, CEO of IDP Connect, said: “These independent and unbiased league tables are used by almost a million applicants and their advisers monthly and are, as importantly, also well respected by the universities themselves for their accuracy and stability.

“The Guide is an essential element of the wide-ranging portfolio of information, advice and guidance available through IDP Connect.

“It complements the thousands of student reviews, chatbot technology and face-to-face counselling in over 30 countries which, altogether, offer the biggest, busiest and unparalleled worldwide resources available on UK higher education institutions and their courses.”

Fully online and free to access, TheCompleteUniversityGuide.co.uk university rankings provide users with independent and trustworthy league and subject tables. Each of the Guide’s tables can be sorted by their individual measures, year, region and mission group (including unaffiliated universities).