Durham University has fallen two places to eighth position in the 2015 league table released by The Guardian last week.
The results are likely to come as a shock to the University after it was seen to be performing well in the Complete University Guide’s league table of earlier this year. A number of the individual departments which topped the rankings there have also experienced falls, including English Studies from second to third place and Modern Languages from third to tenth.
However, the University has shown improvement in some specific areas, such as the rise of the history department from sixth place to second. It has also managed to slightly improve its staff student ratio from 15.1 to 15.6, in comparison with 2014, as well as increasing graduate prospects from 78 to 83.2.
The Guardian’s rankings use a methodology which is distinct from many other national league tables due to the omission of research assessment scores from the calculations. They also include a ‘Value Added’ rating which compares final degree results and entry qualifications. Through this, the newspaper hopes to more accurately reflect the student experience at a university, using only data which directly impacts on the lives of the students.
University departments which have seen the greatest rises this year include English and creative writing at Brunel University, which moved from 38th place to 6th place, and electrical and electronic engineering at Manchester Metropolitan University, which jumped from 54th to 13th.