Russell group universities

As you start thinking about university options while you’re in sixth form, you may hear from your teachers about Russell Group universities. As you narrow down your selection to five universities, you may consider including one or even several Russell Group institutions among your choices. So, what does the Russell Group actually mean when it comes to universities?

The Russell Group is an organisation of 24 universities in the UK. All of them well known for their commitment and focus on research and outstanding teaching and learning experiences.

The Russell Group was initially founded in 1994, and in the QS World University Rankings 2024, four of the top 10 universities in the world – Oxford, Cambridge, Imperial College London and University College London – are Russell Group members.

What is the goal of Russell Group Universities?

Russell Group universities secure two-thirds of all research grants, enabling them to significantly contribute to intellectual, cultural, and economic aspects in the UK. This leads to the attraction of the most exceptional academics to Russell Group institutions.

By producing world-leading research across different topics and subjects, Russell Group universities play crucial role in the UK and the health of its economy.

From the viewpoint of international students, Russell Group universities lead to higher employability and student satisfaction rates, as well as a higher staff-to-student ratio.

In this article, we will guide you through everything you need to know about the Russell Group and the universities that are a part of it!

List of Russell Group Universities

In the table below we listed all the universities which belong to Russell Group.

  • University of Birmingham
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Cambridge
  • Cardiff University
  • Durham University
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Glasgow
  • Imperial College London
  • King’s College London
  • University of Leeds
  • University of Liverpool
  • London School of Economics
  • University of Manchester
  • Newcastle University
  • University of Nottingham
  • University of Oxford
  • Queen Mary, University of London
  • Queen’s University Belfast
  • University of Sheffield
  • University of Southampton
  • University College London
  • University of Warwick
  • University of York

Applying to Russell Group universities

While applying through UCAS is no different in theory from applying to any other university, the heightened academic expectations, and competitive nature of courses means you have to work extra hard to be accepted.

Applicants also should be aware that the standards here are higher than average, particularly when it comes to Oxbridge, Medicine, and postgraduate study.

Entry Requirements 2024 for Russell Group Universities

Russell Group universities are known for their high entry requirements. However, these requirements will vary depending on the specific course you are applying for. For top universities like the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge, typical A-level offers can be AAA and above, while other universities within the group may require a minimum of ABB depending on the course. In addition, students must achieve at least 5 Grade 4 or 5 GCSEs, including English and Mathematics.

Ensure to check the entry requirements set by the Russell Group for your chosen course and make sure that you are taking the required subjects for your A-level.

The level of English proficiency and requirements depend on the institution you plan to apply to.  Overseas students may be required to take IELTS test prior to their application.

Fees and funding

Most of the universities offer a generous package of scholarships and bursaries. Scholarships are available for home, EU and international students.

The tuition fees will vary from £20 000 a year to £41,000 a year for overseas students depending on the chosen programme.

Living costs required for UK student visa are £1023 per month (in London- £1334 per month)

If you are thinking of applying to a UK university, we will be happy to assist you in finding the best solution. Please contact us for professional advice: [email protected]

Tel. +44 79307 32407

Elena Colquhoun, MSc, PGCE, ACIL

Director of Best Start Education, qualified teacher and examiner