In deliberating over their choice of University, many students will have consulted numerous tables and rankings to help aid their decision. One of the most influential of University Rankings comes courtesy of newspaper The Guardian. According to The Guardian, by selecting UWE, students have made a great choice.

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In its 2015 University league table, published in early June, UWE rose a massive fifteen places to 49th position, based on a number of important factors. Amongst these were student satisfaction with their course in general, teaching and feedback, as well as staff to student ratios and employability after graduation. As has been noted elsewhere, this rise is in contradiction with more famous universities such as Kings College London and our local rivals Bristol University, who fell 8 and 11 places respectively.

Ranking at 49th out of 116 universities means that UWE is comfortably in the top half of institutions surveyed. It also shows that UWE is moving in the right direction, at a pace matched by very few universities. The improvement of the last 12 months has reversed the slide of the previous academic year, where the university dropped from 54th to 64th place. The Guardian also adds that UWE is ‘very student friendly’ and that relationships with large employers such as Hewlett Packard and the BBC means its ‘graduate employment record is consistently impressive’.

This is all great news for new students at the university, particularly for first-year students who may be concerned about whether they have made the right choice in pursuing further education. Particularly strong courses for UWE were BSc Social Work, ranking 11th, BA Philosophy, where UWE ranked 13th, and MA Wildlife filmmaking, which is “arguably the best in the world”.

UWE Vice-Chancellor Professor Steve West talked to local newspaper the Bristol Post after the rankings were announced, and stated that he was pleased that students were satisfied with their courses value, ‘since the university places an emphasis on the additional assistance it provides students to do well’. UWE ranked particularly highly in the Guardian’s ‘Value Added Score’ factor, coming joint 1st with St Andrews. This factor is designed to take students entry qualifications and show how much they have improved by their degree result. This statistic shows that teaching at UWE is amongst the most effective in the country.

Hopefully any student nervous about the value of pursuing a degree at UWE will be pleased about what The Guardian has had to say. UWE have a lot to celebrate this year, after a glorious victory against Bristol University in the 2014 Varsity Series- the challenge now is to close the gap in the academic stakes. Are you up for the challenge?

By Philip Mansell