Politics is a popular course in the UK, so choosing the right university for you is a big decision. So we’ve decided to help you out by narrowing down the best universities in the UK for studying politics, based on a variety of criteria, including academic reputation, student satisfaction, and research impact. Whether you’re interested in pursuing a career in politics, government, or another related field, the universities on this list provide a solid foundation for your future success.

1. Oxford University

The best universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: University of Oxford

To nobody’s surprise, Oxford is at the top of The Complete University Guide’s list (which is used throughout this article), boasting a perfect 100% overall score. It ranks highly across all categories, with a 99% rating for entry standards, an 84% rating for research quality and 94% for graduate prospects. It does not have a rating for student satisfaction, though it is unclear why. Regardless, Oxford provides an outstanding academic experience that you would expect from one of the top universities in the world. 

2. Cambridge University

The best universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: University of Cambridge

Also relatively unsurprisingly, Cambridge is second on the list of the best universities for politics in the UK. Like its Oxbridge counterpart, it does not have a rating for student satisfaction, but it excels in the other categories. With an outstanding 96% overall, it boasts a 98% rating for entry standards, an 81% rating for research quality and an 88% rating for graduate prospects. Precisely the kind of thing you would expect from such a world-renowned institution as Cambridge.

3. UCL

The best universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: UCL

UCL (University College London) is the first London uni on the list. With an 88% overall rating, you can expect an outstanding academic experience at UCL. It actually beats both Oxford and Cambridge in terms of research quality (88%). Its other ratings aren’t too shabby either – 81% for entry standards, 73% for student satisfaction and 88% for graduate prospects. It is the second largest uni in the country by total enrolment and the largest postgrad enrolment, so you’re bound to meet plenty of people here. 

4. London School of Economics

The best universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: London School of Economics

LSE (the London School of Economics and Political Science) is a specialist school for the social sciences, so perfect for you budding politics students. It has an 88% overall rating, with a 94% for entry standards, 76% for student satisfaction and an 88% rating for both research quality and graduate prospects. LSE is where 19 Nobel prize winners and 52 heads of state did at least some of their education, so there’s a chance you may go to school with a future world leader. You never know. 

5. St Andrews

The best universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: St Andrews

The first non-English university on the list, St Andrews occupies the fifth spot on the list of the best universities for politics in the UK. It boasts a perfect 100% rating for its entry standards, along with the highest level of student satisfaction of any of these five unis (87%). A 79% rating for research quality and a 78% rating for graduate prospects come together for an overall rating of 85%. As it is a Scottish uni, you have the option to take two additional subjects during your first two years, so if you have another subject you want to take at uni (say, a language for example), you can still study it. 

6. University of Warwick

best unis for politics in the uk
Source: The University of Warwick

Occupying spot number six on the list is Warwick. With an 86% rating for research quality, which is better than both Oxbridge unis, there is a lot of outstanding research being undertaken here. Its rankings in the other categories hardly pale in comparison: 77% for entry standards, 82% for student satisfaction and 80% for graduate prospects. All of these come together to give Warwick an 83% overall score. At Warwick, you have the opportunity to take a joint honours degree with many subjects, such as languages (French, German, Italian or Chinese), history, PPE or sociology. Perfect if you can’t quite decide what you want to study at uni.

7. University of Durham

durham university is one of the best universities in the UK for politics
Source: Durham University

Number seven on the list is Durham. It’s the third oldest university in England (after only Oxford and Cambridge), so there’s plenty of history at this uni. It has an overall rating of 82%, with its highest individual category rating being for entry standards (88%), as you may expect from such a historically well-renowned university as Durham. Its ratings in the other categories are as follows: 73% for student satisfaction, 78% for research quality and 82% for graduate prospects.

8. Kings College London

The best universities RANKED for politics in the UK
Source: Kings College London

KCL (Kings College London) is number eight on the list. Located in Strand in Central London, you’ll be right in the heart of London for your studies. The highest rating it has amongst The Complete University Guide’s categories is for entry standards (85%). That means that you and your future classmates will be coming in some outstanding results before you even begin your university careers. Its other ratings are 73%, 82% and 80% for student satisfaction, research quality and graduate prospects respectively.

9. University of Bath

The Best Universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: University of Bath

Ninth up on the list is the University of Bath. Along with St Andrews, it’s not officially a Russell Group Uni (like the rest of the unis on this list), but it’s considered an equivalent, so you won’t be missing out on that front. It has an equal overall rating to KCL (81%), beating it in terms of student satisfaction (77%) and graduate prospects (86%). However, it scores lower for its entry standards (79%) and its research quality (74%). However, it’s still nothing to scoff at.

10. University of Edinburgh

The Best Universities RANKED for Politics in the UK
Source: The University of Edinburgh

Rounding out the top ten of the best universities for politics in the UK is Edinburgh. Edinburgh ranks highly in three of the four categories that The Complete University Guide uses, with a 90% rating for entry standards, 88% for research quality and 74% for graduate prospects. However, it only scores a 69% rating for student satisfaction. Not necessarily a cause for concern, as that’s still a majority that feels satisfied with the teaching on their course, but it is the lowest rating on the list. Like at St Andrews, as it is a Scottish uni, you can take classes in up to two additional subjects over your first two years.

So, that rounds up the list of the ten best universities for politics in the UK. However, there are many other fantastic options to choose from, so it’s always worth doing extra research. Whether that’s visiting universities on open days, talking to friends or family that went there, or finding information online – all sorts of things can help you to make the decision. 

If you’re looking for advice on how to make that big decision, check out this list with tips on how to choose your university. And if you want to know more about studying politics, we have a complete guide to help you out.