Being accepted into the university you want to sounds hard enough, but have you wondered which are the hardest UK universities to get into? Almost like an impregnable fortresses of knowledge those 10 universities are the worst nightmare and the biggest dream of every self-respected and ambitious student.
So which UK universities boast fierce competition for entry? Let’s start the countdown:
Overall rank: 7 This Coventry campus university squeezes into the top 10 with an average UCAS score requirement of 480. The maths department is particularly highly regarded – one professor has recently been awarded the world’s most prestigious maths award, the Fields Medal.
Overall rank: 20 The Scottish capital’s university does not make the top ten in the overall league table, but maintains a high level of entry standards with an average entry requirement of 482. Its prestigious alumni help it to remain a sought-after place of study – graduates signed the United States’ Declaration of Independence, founded Ivy League universities and brought modern medicine to China.
Overall rank: 15 University of Bristol is the most competitive West Country university for entry, with an average UCAS score required of 486. It founded Britain’s first drama department, which continues to produce a high calibre of actors and comedians – Matt Lucas, David Walliams, Simon Pegg and Charlotte Ritchie all cut their teeth at Bristol.
Overall rank: 10 Undergraduate entry requirements to UCL range from A*AA-AAB at A level. It prides itself on being the first university in England to admit students of any race, class or religion. Its UCAS entry requirement is 500.
Overall rank: 5 The highest ranking Scottish university, St. Andrews, has an entry requirement of 516. The oldest university in Scotland, it claims to treat references which give evidence of clear potential as a very important factor when considering applicants – something which worked a charm for Prince William and Kate Middleton, who met while studying at St. Andrews.
Overall rank: 5 Durham operates a collegiate based system, whereby students apply to study in an academic department and join a college community. Its average UCAS score is 521. Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, Gabby Logan and Jonny Wilkinson are among its notable alumni.
Overall rank: 3 LSE specializes in anthropology, criminology, international relations and sociology. Entry requirements range from A*AA-AAB at A level, with an average UCAS score of 532. It also tops the list of most popular university in the UK for billionaires, according to Wealth-X and UBS Billionaire census 2014.
Overall rank: 4 Imperial has the highest standards of all the London universities, with a UCAS requirement of 566. It specializes in practical application of science. Its research departments specialize in global health, climate change and sustainable sources of energy technology, and have one of the largest research incomes in the UK. Entry requirements range from A*A*A*- AAB at A level.
Overall rank: 2 Missing out on the top spot to its esteemed rival Cambridge, the oldest university in the English-speaking world still has exceptionally high standards of entry with an average UCAS entry score of 571. Applicants must get between A*A*A* and AAA at A level. Most students must sit a written test or submit written work, plus undergo a gruelling interview procedure with college tutors.
Overall rank: 1 The toughest university to get into with a score of 601, Cambridge requires A*A*A at A level for undergraduate science courses and A*AA for arts and psychological and behavioural science. This is not surprising for a university that has produced 90 Nobel Prize winners, more than any other institution. Applicants should also expect to undergo interviews and assessments.
So how does that sound? Are you willing to try your hand at conquering one of those fortresses? If so, be sure to prepare yourself for the battle of your life, depending mostly on your skills and knowledge, and of course a lot of sleepless nights.