Deciding which University to go to is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make (so important in fact, that we wrote a blog post on it not long ago!). Picking the right course in the right city, enabling you the greatest chance of good career prospects is what we’re all aiming for: but here’s the Guardian’s list (based on extensive research, I should probably add!) of the 10 worst Universities in the UK… cue a quick scroll down to see if your University is mentioned!
Located in and around Luton, students scored the quality of teaching just 40.3/100 – less than half the score of the top 11 Universities on the list! With 23.3 students for every member of staff, classes are much larger than the top Universities, suggesting there is less support for students.
=9. Leeds Trinity
Leeds has significantly dropped down the list since 2012 when it ranked 84th in the country (now it’s joint 111th). Although career prospects are the highest amongst the bottom 10, it’s still rather low at 62%. Whilst its community-feel may be appealing with a mere 3,000 students studying there; if you’re considering going to Leeds, your future may thank you for looking at the Uni of (34th) or Leeds Met – although to be fair, that didn’t do much better at 107th place.
=9. Southampton Solent
Whilst this University may be seen as the alternative option to the University of Southampton for students wishing to study more creative courses such as fashion, photography and animation, it has scored extremely low in the rankings; and the chance of entering work after graduation stands at just 44%.
7. London South Bank
This University’s central location on the edge of Zone 1 in (the slightly unnerving) Elephant and Castle can be appealing to students, but according to the Guardian’s research based on student ratings, this University is the third worst in London and the seventh worst in the UK. With a 39.4% teaching satisfaction rate, and 23.7 students per member of staff; this low score is perhaps surprising given that the average entry rate is the equivalent of 3Cs.
6. Abertay Dundee
Despite this University’s claims to offer “world-leading courses in computer arts and computer games technology”, “some of the best IT facilities in the UK” and “a new student centre with a cinema, coffee shop, night club and exhibition gallery”, these features have not swayed students from voting it one of the worst Universities in the UK. Teacher satisfaction is just 34.5% with career prospects 59%.
I’m not going to lie, until I read this I didn’t even realise Bolton had a University! But it does, and it’s the fifth worst in the UK according to the Guardian’s survey (not to mention the worst University in 2013!), with its career prospects joint second lowest at 40%. Of its 13,000 students, approximately 1/3 are said to come from the North West – but perhaps if you’re considering staying around this area, you should instead look at the University of Manchester, Manchester Met or Salford.
4. London Metropolitan
As the second worst University in London and fourth in the UK, it is perhaps telling that when I viewed the ‘BA(Hons) Fashion Retail Management degree, both the ‘entry requirement’ and ‘career opportunities’ were blank. But then again, I guess you wouldn’t want to publicise the fact that only 50% of students have positive career prospects (or is that too harsh?). This University’s trendy location in North and East London will definitely attract the creative types, but having stumbled across the Aldgate campus during a Jack the Ripper tour, I can’t help but think that walking round the back streets isn’t anywhere near as appealing.
=3. East London
An internationally diverse University with students hailing from 120 different countries; the University of East London offers a modern student village in the business area of Docklands for all first year students, with views of the Canary Wharf skyline. However, this hasn’t deterred the low marks with the lowest career prospect score of just 39% and the second lowest teaching satisfaction score of 31.2%.
=3. Trinity Saint David
Formed in 2010, Trinity Saint David is part of the University of Wales with campuses in Camarthen and Lampeter. Students have been disappointed overall with this University, with a mere 31.2% teaching satisfaction rate, 50% career prospects; and a rather large 21.3 students per teacher.
1. Bucks New University
And the official worst University in the UK is… drumroll… Bucks New University. Now, you’d be forgiven if you’ve never heard of it before (I’m not going to lie, I haven’t!) According to the University, it is “nestled in the beautiful countryside of the Chiltern Hills” in Buckinghamshire. Offering a large range of vocational courses, Bucks New University is the largest provider of adult nursing training across London. None of this however saved it from bottom position, with the lowest teaching satisfaction rate of 30.1 (just 1/3 of the score given to the top 3 Universities Cambridge, Oxford and London School of Economics; and ½ of the score of the top 54 Universities!
As these Universities have placed the bottom ten in the country, you may be thinking that you need to avoid them at all costs. Obviously, there are ‘better’ Universities as found by the student survey, but a lot of students studying at these Unis will no doubt disagree with the findings, and really enjoy it there. If you’ve been considering attending one of these Universities, perhaps see if you can get in contact with current students (preferably on the course you’ve applied for) to find out what they really think. Nevertheless, the Guardian’s results were based on findings from a student survey, meaning these results are likely to be reliable.
Written by Elle Pollicott