Sunday Times University Guide 2013: Computer Science

Yesterday saw the publication of the Sunday Times University Guide 2013 (£), one of the many university ranking guides in the UK (in fact, we are very much in university ranking season, with the news that UK universities are slipping down the world rankings).

As with the 2012 Guide (£), as well as the Guardian University Guide 2013 published in May and The Times Good University Guide 2013 published in June, there were some familiar institutions in the top 10 for Computer Science:

Ranking 2012
1. University of Oxford (1st)
2. University of Cambridge (2nd)
3. Imperial College London (4th)
4. University of Birmingham (12th)
5. University of Bristol (3rd)
6. University of Bath (6th)
7. University of Sheffield (14th)
8. University of York (7th)
9. University of Warwick (9th)
10. University of Glasgow (15th)


As always, the rankings for Computer Science in Wales were of particular interest:

Ranking 2012
28. Cardiff University (21st)
41. Swansea University (33rd)
52. Aberystwyth University (58th)
63. Cardiff Metropolitan University (50th)
73. Bangor University (41st)
74. University of Glamorgan (81st)
94. University of Wales, Newport (40th)
103. Glyndŵr University (68th)
104. University of Wales Trinity Saint David (88th)

(N.B. no data was available for Swansea Metropolitan University)

The Sunday Times’ methodology differs somewhat from the Guardian’s methodology (and even The Times‘!), especially with respect to research, but with less focus on academic services and student facilities.

However, this clearly highlights the quirks of having three newspapers publishing university league tables (as well as The Complete University Guide, the Times Higher Education World University Rankings and the QS World University Rankings) with widely different metrics and weightings. It begs the question: does all of this information help prospective students make more informed choices about where to study Computer Science in the UK?

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