Every year, NatWest surveys a bunch of students to gauge the Student Living Index. One of the questions asked students from 28 cities to rate their stress levels from 1 – 10, and anything above 8 was considered as very stressed. So which cities are freaking out, and which ones are coasting by? These are the 10 most stressful universities in the UK rated by students in the latest research!

10. Nottingham

Nottingham University
Source: University of Nottingham

Kickstarting our list of the most stressful universities in the UK is Nottingham. The peaceful city home to Robin Hood and Sherwood Forest is actually…well not so peaceful. Thankfully it’s also the city that’s famous for inventing Ibuprofen! Just over a third of students reported feeling stressed here, which no doubt keeps Ibuprofen sales up!

9 – Oxford

oxford university
Oxford University

Once more, we are not surprised. Only shocked that one of the Oxbridge universities aren’t in the top spot. 34% of students in Oxford report stress – we reckon its only higher than Cambridge because of the cost of living in the South. However, this figure is down from 51% in the previous survey, which is quite a huge drop.

8. Liverpool

Source: Unsplash

In the past, Liverpool was found to be THE most stressful city in the UK. Now it’s also in the list of the most stressful universities, with 35% of students feeling stressed about their degree. Many of the factors found in surveys include crime rates, commute times, cost of living and more.

7. Leeds

Leeds students

Students in Leeds have a lot to worry about, apparently. 47% of them have reported high levels of stress. All that partying must be hard work… Someone tell them they’re allowed to take a break.

6 – Leicester


Leicester, with two high-end unis, is 8th on the list for most stressful universities in the UK. In fact, 36% of the students in the city reported high-stress levels. We can only guess must be about the workloads and lack of clubs in Leicester because they’re definitely earning enough! However, this figure was previously above 40%, so we’re hoping stress is gradually declining.

5 – Cardiff


Over in Wales, students in Cardiff are not doing too great! 40% of the students in the city reported high levels of stress. Again, maybe it’s the partying, where Cardiff made it in the top 10 unis that like to have a good time! Or maybe that’s the stress relief?

4. Newcastle


In between Cardiff and Southampton is Newcastle, the third most stressful uni on our list. The research found that 41% of students were stressed out by their degree, which is a huge amount. Outside of the student population, Tyne and Wear was also ranked 4th most stressful in a study by Forbes Advisor. It makes a change from surveys that usually prove how friendly and fond of Greggs Newcastle is!

3. Southampton

Southampton third most stressful universities

Just shy of the (joint) top spot of the most stressful universities is Southhampton, stressing out 42% of its students. Down south, the cost of living can be pretty steep, so it’s no wonder studying there is stressful for students. Southampton can also be a busy and crowded city, especially during peak tourist seasons. This can make it difficult to find space and can be overwhelming for some people. Especially when you’re deep into dissertation mode!

Joint top most stressful universities in the UK – Coventry and Glasgow 

coventry most stressful universities

The last most stressful university was Plymouth, who have clearly put in all the stops to change this. They’re now nowhere to be found even in the top 20 most stressful universities. But sadly for Glasgow and Coventry students, the same isn’t true. Let’s face it Coventry students, it must be tough going to a university with the wrong name… 

university of glasgow

Both Glasgow and Coventry shared the top position of the most stressful university according to the latest findings. 43% of students at each uni rated their university degree as 8 and above on the scale of 1-10 of how stressful they found it. That’s a significant amount of students finding it rather stressful! Despite this, 44% of students at Coventry and 41% at Glasgow claimed they enjoyed their university degree, rating their level of enjoyment 8+!