The Uni Guide has a fresh new look

What is the Russell Group? List of Russell Group universities

Here's what it means to be a part of the Russell Group – and a list of the universities involved

The Russell Group is an organisation of 24 universities (including the original six red brick universities) that have a shared focus on research and a reputation for academic achievement.

There aren’t any specific entry requirements for the Russell Group, but they are likely to be high – the universities involved usually fill out the top-end of university league tables.

Here's a list of the universities in the group, as well as how they came together – and whether or not going to one of the universities will make a difference.

History of the Russell Group

The Russell Group formed in 1994, with the 17 original members trying to get their interests represented to government. The name of the group came from the hotel where the heads of these universities would meet: the Hotel Russell in London. 

The group become an official organisation in 2007 – and seven more universities have joined along the way.

List of Russell Group universities

There are currently 24 universities within the Russell Group:

The Russell Group isn’t the only university group out there – University Alliance is a group of 'professional and technical' universities, while MillionPlus is an 'association for modern universities'.

What the Russell Group says:

Russell Group universities work hard to create the ideal learning environment for students to flourish. The combination of teaching and research excellence in our universities will offer you the chance to learn from some of the world’s most respected academics.

You will be supported to make sure you get the most from the education our universities offer and you’ll have access to some of the best teaching facilities in the UK: from libraries and lecture halls, to labs and online learning tools.

What a careers adviser says:

By banding together, Russell Group universities could offer more funding, contracts, grants and awards than other universities. 

With more money to invest in research and other projects, the knock-on effect is that these unis are better equipped to attract the top staff and students, which then further cements their academic prestige.

Gill Sharp (Careers Adviser),

Will going to a Russell Group uni get me a graduate job?

Your grades, experience and interview will be the real clinchers for getting a job – but a top-class honours degree from a Russell Group university won't harm your chances.

Some recruiters may concentrate on visiting Russell Group universities when running events or exhibiting at careers fairs, but the majority will visit as many universities as possible. 

Ultimately, you'll be able to find opportunities no matter which uni you go to.

Will it make much difference day-to-day?

As an undergraduate, being at a Russell Group uni won’t have a direct impact on your studies; you may get the opportunity to be involved in academic research when you do a final-year or summer project.

Studying at a Russell Group university can work in your favour if you want to eventually take a masters or PhD – particularly if your application demonstrates knowledge of the latest departmental research.

Don’t get too hung up on names and rankings though – they may carry a certain weight, but the main thing is to choose a course and university that's the right fit for you. 

Where could your A-levels take you?

Enter your A-level choices below to find out

    Add another subject

Search The Uni Guide

Find further advice or search for information on a course or university