Despite years of international attention on the issue, gender gaps remain. Numerous studies and surveys show that the global gender gap between women and men has widened since 2020. International organisations have attributed this to the greater impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on women than men. How has this manifested in higher education in the UK? Let’s find out! Here is the list of unis with the biggest gender gap.

1. Cranfield University

Cranfield ranks 27th worldwide in ‘Engineering – Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing’ according to the QS World University Rankings. This uni is largely STEM-centred, which is precisely why it ranks so high up on the list, with a whopping 74% students being male. Sadly, STEM remains a male-dominated field even now.

2. Leeds College of Music

Leeds college of music, unis with the biggest gender gap
Source: subTOURING

Fact: Women are less represented in the music industry than men. The Leeds College of Music say so themselves. This is especially true in genres such as jazz, rock and EDM, which is largely what this uni focuses on. Hence, 70% of the students being male comes as little surprise.

3. London Business School

When we’re asked to imagine the word “business”, 90% of us think “Wolf of Wall Street”. This is what business is portrayed as—a bunch of men walking around in 3-piece suits, briefcases and shiny shoes. It is extremely difficult for a woman to be successful if she choses to pursue business. The world of business was, and will remain, for the foreseeable future, a man’s world. So, this isn’t a popular choice among women, as is shown through the stats: only 36% of the students are female.

4. Heriot-Watt University

Heriot-Watt University UK unis with the biggest gender gaps

The European Union says that the number of female students at bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels has grown steadily over the last years. However, women are still under-represented in research and innovation careers. The Heriot-Watt University boasts of being highly ranked in the fields of research and innovation. Consequently, it ranks pretty high up on the list of unis with the biggest gender gap, with a 60% male population.

5. Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine

The name of the university should be the biggest clue itself. This uni is completely STEM oriented, much like Cranfield University. It doesn’t have as big of a gap as the highest-ranked uni on this list, but it’s still pretty bad, with a 40% female population.

6. Loughborough University

Loughborough University uk unis with the biggest gender gaps

Elite sport continues to set men and women apart. We can see clear gender gaps when we look at the number of women working in sport at every level. Research shows that 1.5 million fewer women than men participate in sport at least once a month. Considering Loughborough University is the best in the world for sports-related subjects, the gender gap isn’t too bad. 41% of the university’s students are female, which are better statistics than one could expect.

7. Solent University

It’s a little unclear as to why this uni has a gender gap since it offers a wide range of courses. In fact, it offers courses that are predominantly popular among females (Psychology and Design, to name a few). The gap here isn’t too drastic though: 44% of the students are female. The university has implemented some measures to combat this since the release of this data. For instance, they’ve launched a Transgender Equality and Inclusion policy.

So, that’s the wind-up on the UK unis with the biggest gender gap. To look at the other end of the spectrum, why not check out our post on the UK unis with the most female students?


Last Updated on September 2, 2022