UCL (University College London)
Friday 31 May 2013
Overall ranking: Came 7th out of 124 in the Complete University Guide for 2014.
History: Founded by a group of liberals in 1826, influenced by the social reformer Jeremy Bentham, with the aim of providing education for all regardless of religion, race or gender.
Address: Gower Street, Bloomsbury, in the heart of London's university-land. The UCL Medical School also has campuses at hospital sites in Hampstead and Archway in North London.
Ambience: UCL's location in central London offers outstanding benefits, positioned as it is within walking distance of the British Museum, the British Library, the University of London Union, Regent's Park and the West End. A friendly and cosmopolitan atmosphere.
Who's the boss? Professor Malcolm Grant CBE, barrister and environmental lawyer.
Prospectus: 020 7679 3000 or download one here.
UCAS code: U80
What you need to know
Easy to get into? No. Entry requirements range from A*A*A to ABB at A-level, plus a pass in a further AS-level or equivalent, depending on the course.
Vital statistics: England's third oldest university, and impressive academically, UCL is London's research and teaching powerhouse. Of the 26,698 students, just under half are postgrads, over a third of which are pursuing research degrees. 14,785 undergraduates, with around 41% of students coming from 155 countries worldwide. There has been at least one Nobel Laureate from the UCL community every decade since the prizes began in 1901.
Added value: The inert gases, hormones and vitamins were all first discovered here. More than 100 undergraduate degree programmes include study abroad as an integral part of the curriculum. One of the top universities in the world, with the highest number of professors of any UK university. The union runs a fitness suite at Bloomsbury Fitness, has its own sports grounds and full access to the Somers Town Community Sports Centre for a whole host of sports. UCL is one of 24 Russell Group universities, dedicated to the highest levels of academic excellences.
Research: Placed 5th out of 124 in the latest Research Assessment Exercise .
Graduate prospects: Very good- ranked 8th with 82.9% of students entering graduate employment.
Any accommodation? Yes, rent for a single room in halls ranges from around £127 to £192 per week and all first years are guaranteed a place. Twins are available from £90. Three quarters of the rooms are within a fifteen minute walk of UCL.
Cheap to live there? Nope - this is London. Around £120 per week minimum if you share a house.
Transport links: Mainline rail stations nearby include Euston, King’s Cross and St Pancras International (Eurostar terminal). Close to tube stations at Euston Square, Warren Street, Euston, Goodge Street and Russell Square.
Fees: Set at £9,000 per year for full-time home undergrads starting in 2013. Fees for 2014 entry will be set next August.
Bursaries: Up to £3,500 is available to first year students with a household income below £25,000, but a wide range of financial support is available- see here.
The fun stuff
Nightlife: The union runs a full entertainments programme, and has a number of bars, café bars and catering outlets. There are also pubs and clubs around the university. Leading theatrical and comedy performances are on all year round at the on-campus UCL Bloomsbury Theatre, which also hosts union productions. Discos and live music of all kinds are on offer. Plus there's London on your doorstep.
Price of a pint: Around £3.60 here in the city- often more.
Sporting reputation: Not bad- 38th in the BUCS league.
Calendar highlight: The UCL Summer Ball has become legendary among students and is held on campus each May. The Welcome Ball is hosted by none other than the Ministry of Sound- a night not to be missed.
Notable societies: The American Society looks particularly cool- it hosts a Super Bowl party and a Thanksgiving Dinner. There are many societies dedicated to particular countires and cultures, reflecting the cosmopolitan nature of the student community. Then there's the Human Powered Flight Society which builds human powered planes and flies them...apparently.
Glittering alumni: Alexander Graham Bell, telephone inventor; Mahatma Gandhi; Ricky Gervais, creator of The Office; Jonathan Ross, TV and radio presenter; Chris Martin, lead singer of Coldplay, plus the entire band. 21 Nobel Prize winners are among graduates and academics.
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