New index ranks UK universities based on tuition fees, rental costs and league table positioning

An independent survey has shown the University of Ulster offers the best value for money for English students in the UK when rental and tuition costs are taken into account.

The Student Value for Money Report 2012, commissioned by Simple Landlords Insurance, ranked 116 universities according to tuition fees, local rental prices and league table positioning, arriving at a final score to represent overall value for money.

Overall, there were dramatic gaps between the high rental prices of the south of England and the rest of the UK. The cheapest average rents can be found in Teesside, at just £43.68 per week, whilst students in London can expect to pay £108.03 per week to study in the capital.

Key findings from the study:

  • 1: Only three of the top-rated universities in the league table also ranked within the top ten for value. These were Durham, Oxford and Lancaster.
  • 2: The ten worst-value universities were all located in London.
  • 3: The North East’s universities offer the best value for money overall. London consistently ranks lowest for value, with the South in general performing worse than the North.
  • 4: Staffordshire University made the biggest gains when value for money was compared to its position in the league table; King’s College London fell the furthest.

David Jackson, Director of Simple Landlords Insurance, said: “Now, more than ever, prospective students will be looking at how to get the best value for money when choosing where to go to university.

“It’s not just about league table positioning anymore. With tuition fees soaring, students and parents alike will be taking into account the total cost of a degree, and exactly what you get for your money.

“The report demonstrates a marked disparity between what students are getting for their money at different universities across the UK.

“It’s quite alarming that only three of the universities that rank in the top ten on the university league table rank in the top ten for value for money. It just shows how worthwhile it can be to do more research before making a final decision.”


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