UK universities are ranked highly in the Times Higher Education - QS World University Rankings (published in October 2009), with Cambridge rated the best university in the UK and 2nd best in the world. A total of 18 UK institutions are placed in the Global Top 100, compared with 17 in 2008. Some of the best performers are UCL, Manchester, Warwick, to name a few.

University College London achieved the highest ever position in the league table, up from 7th to 4th internationally and ahead of Oxford University.

Imperial College London is ranked 3rd in Europe and 5th in the world (tied for 5th with Oxford), it is also placed highly in the following subjects:
- 2nd in Europe and 6th in the world for engineering and information technology
- 3rd in Europe and joint 17th in the world for life sciences and biomedicine
- 3rd in Europe and 10th in the world for natural sciences

The University of Reading moved up three places to 191st, making it one of the world's top 2.5% of higher education institutions. In addition the Employer Survey ranked the University 146th. In the subject league tables, it is also placed in the top 200 for Arts & Humanities (192nd internationally).

University of Edinburgh is the highest ranked institution in Scotland, up three places from 23rd to top 20 in 2009. It is also placed in the Top 25 globally for Arts & Humanities (24th).

UK institutions ranked within the top 100 globally:
National Rank, Name, (Global Rank)
1 Cambridge (2)
2 University College London (4)
=3 Imperial College London (=5)
=3 Oxford (=5)
5 University of Edinburgh (20)
6 King's College London (23)
7 U of Manchester (26)
8 Bristol (34)
9 Warwick (58)
10 Birmingham (66)
11 LSE (=67)
12 York (=70)
13 Glasgow (79)
14 Sheffield (82)
15 St Andrews (=87)
16 Nottingham (91)
17 Southampton (=95)
18 Leeds (99)

Source: QS Intelligence Unit (www.topuniversities.com)

The overall rankings are based on six distinct indicators: Academic Peer Review; Employer Survey; Research Excellence; Teaching Excellence; International Faculty; and International Students.

World University Ranking Tables

America - US News & World Report, The Princeton Review, BusinessWeek
Canada - Maclean's, Gourman Report Ranking of Canadian Universities
UK - Sunday Times, Guardian, Times Good University Guide, Daily Telegraph
World - Shanghai Jiao Tong ARWU Rankings, Webometrics, Newsweek
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