BEST Non-Russell Group universities

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hydroxide
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Since I keep seeing threads about which russell group uni is the worst, why not discuss which non-RG unis are the best?
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Dannit2
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Not another one of these threads...
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artful_lounger
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St Andrews, Bath, Loughborough, Aberdeen, Dundee, Heriot-Watt, Strathclyde, SOAS...the list is extensive. The Russell Group is a research consortium - it's irrelevant for undergrads. It's entirely based on the research outputs and investments of those universities, and has no metrics regarding undergraduate teaching. Ask anyone who's actually been to university - a brilliant researcher does not necessarily make a brilliant lecturer (in fact often research excellence seems to be negatively correlated with ability to interact with human beings...).

Some, like SOAS (and Goldsmiths', to an extent) have fairly niche specialisms, that they end up standing head and shoulders over the competition because...there is very little competition. I don't actually know if you can study African languages anywhere other than SOAS in the UK, actually. Others, like say, Loughborough or Bath, simply fall short of the research based metrics, but consistently produce strong graduates across a number of areas who place well in industry, or go on to graduate study at RG universities.

In any case, barring the RG debate, there are many excellent non-RG unis, although it depends somewhat on what you want to study. For example, Swansea is one of the few universities in the country to offer courses in Egyptology/Egyptian Archaeology, and so many who would apply to such courses elsewhere (which I think are most RG universities anyway) are likely to apply there as well. The SOAS example remains as above, although it's expertise of course extends beyond languages - it has a great scope of economic, legal, cultural, philosophical, anthropological/sociological and historical studies of non-Western countries, so again, an excellent option for someone interested in these areas. Similarly, as many of their subjects are quite specialist, they're likely to get quite a few applying to the handful of RG universities that offer the same subjects as well.

St Andrews is often seen as the Scottish counterpart to Oxbridge, and remains relatively popular, although I think it's been eclipsed by Edinburgh in terms of perceived "prestige" somewhat in recent years. It also is attractive for students who want to study at an excellent, top tier university but aren't wholly certain which subjects they want to study initially, or who want to pursue unusual combinations, as the Scottish system in general, and St Andew's perhaps especially, is more amenable to this. Loughborough, Heriot-Watt, and Strathclyde all offer excellent STEM subjects, particularly in engineering/applied sciences, with a great number of links to industry. The former two also have a number of other subjects on offer, and Loughborough is considered fairly well for the arts to my knowledge.
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username738914
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St Andrews and Bath are the clear best.



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bekahh_
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as ex-Polys go, Northumbria is incredible
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Doones
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(Original post by Wired_1800)
Manchester is a RG uni and also in the Big 8.

Big 8: Cambridge, Oxford, Manchester, Imperial, UCL, Edinburgh, LSE and Kings College London.
Not constructive to this thread. Please don't continue... thanks.

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Heyok
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Not again.....not another one
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username738914
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
St Andrews, Bath, Leeds, Loughborough, Aberdeen, Dundee, Heriot-Watt, Strathclyde, SOAS...the list is extensive. The Russell Group is a research consortium - it's irrelevant for undergrads. It's entirely based on the research outputs and investments of those universities, and has no metrics regarding undergraduate teaching. Ask anyone who's actually been to university - a brilliant researcher does not necessarily make a brilliant lecturer (in fact often research excellence seems to be negatively correlated with ability to interact with human beings...).

Some, like SOAS (and Goldsmiths', to an extent) have fairly niche specialisms, that they end up standing head and shoulders over the competition because...there is very little competition. I don't actually know if you can study African languages anywhere other than SOAS in the UK, actually. Others, like say, Loughborough or Bath, simply fall short of the research based metrics, but consistently produce strong graduates across a number of areas who place well in industry, or go on to graduate study at RG universities.

In any case, barring the RG debate, there are many excellent non-RG unis, although it depends somewhat on what you want to study. For example, Swansea is one of the few universities in the country to offer courses in Egyptology/Egyptian Archaeology, and so many who would apply to such courses elsewhere (which I think are most RG universities anyway) are likely to apply there as well. The SOAS example remains as above, although it's expertise of course extends beyond languages - it has a great scope of economic, legal, cultural, philosophical, anthropological/sociological and historical studies of non-Western countries, so again, an excellent option for someone interested in these areas. Similarly, as many of their subjects are quite specialist, they're likely to get quite a few applying to the handful of RG universities that offer the same subjects as well.

St Andrews is often seen as the Scottish counterpart to Oxbridge, and remains relatively popular, although I think it's been eclipsed by Edinburgh in terms of perceived "prestige" somewhat in recent years. It also is attractive for students who want to study at an excellent, top tier university but aren't wholly certain which subjects they want to study initially, or who want to pursue unusual combinations, as the Scottish system in general, and St Andew's perhaps especially, is more amenable to this. Loughborough, Heriot-Watt, and Strathclyde all offer excellent STEM subjects, particularly in engineering/applied sciences, with a great number of links to industry. The former two also have a number of other subjects on offer, and Loughborough is considered fairly well for the arts to my knowledge. Leeds is another fairly strong "generalist", which also has a number of less common subjects available, like Russian, Linguistics, History/Philosophy of Science, Aviation Technology/Studies, and covers the breadth of very "applied" courses (like Fashion Marketing) to much more traditional academic subjects like Classics and Physics.
you know Leeds is in the Russell Group, right?

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Wired_1800
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(Original post by hydroxide)
Since I keep seeing threads about which russell group uni is the worst, why not discuss which non-RG unis are the best?
I would say Surrey is really good and others mentioned by other posters.
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dazee__
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Bucks New Uni
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Doones
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In terms of 5 year postgraduation median earnings the top 10 non-RG universities are:

1. St George's (because, medicine)
2. Bath
3. Birkbeck (because, older students are already in work)
4. St Andrews
5. Loughborough
6. City, UoL
7. Royal Veterinary College (because, clue in name)
8. Aberdeen
9. Sussex
10. Royal Holloway

Source: https://www.gov.uk/government/statis...-by-university

Edit: just to add, there isn't actually much difference between the universities for 5 year median earnings. St George's is an outlier because of medicine, but there's only £4k between Bath (#2) and RHUL (#10). In most cases the university you go to makes very little difference.
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Appleorpear
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St Andrews/Bath

Loughborough/Surrey

End of thread.
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artful_lounger
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(Original post by Princepieman)
you know Leeds is in the Russell Group, right?

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An oversight.
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Doones
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(Original post by J-SP)
An interesting table - surprised Surrey isn't in there given its rankings and geographical location.
So was I. It would be 15th.

This is using the 2008/9 graduate cohort, and I have a sneaking suspicion it might be higher for more recent grads.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
So was I. It would be 15th.

This is using the 2008/9 graduate cohort, and I have a sneaking suspicion it might be higher for more recent grads.
Why post data that is so out of date - they graduated nearly TEN years ago!
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Wired_1800
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(Original post by J-SP)
An interesting table - surprised Surrey isn't in there given its rankings and geographical location.
I saw your post before it was deleted concerning the "other thing". I would not judge others based on where they choose study. It was my bad. You are right to point it out. We make mistakes.

To this post, I think Surrey has risen in the rank and may have high earners as part of the grads.
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Doones
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(Original post by Muttley79)
Why post data that is so out of date - they graduated nearly TEN years ago!
They graduated in 2009. Then they are tracked for another 5 years.

It's a longitudinal study.

Earnings 6 months after graduation doesn't really tell you very much.

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Muttley79
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
They graduated in 2009. Then they are tracked for another 5 years.

It's a longitudinal study.

Earnings 6 months after graduation doesn't really tell you very much.

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Still too long ago to be relevant anyway.
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Doones
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(Original post by Muttley79)
Still too long ago to be relevant anyway.

Is this a mean average? Surely you are aware that a mean is not necessarily representative of a population?
Follow the link, the methodology is all there. It's a median. Brookes is £28,459 - just below Surrey.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
Follow the link, the methodology is all there. It's a median. Brookes is £28,459 - just below Surrey.
I edited my post ... the data is too old anyway.

Why do you keep mentioning Brookes? I didn't go there and my ex-students who did earn mega bucks in Engineering.
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