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Highest-ranked universities in Clearing 2024

Need a uni place? Want a better one than your current offer? These top universities all have places in Clearing for 2024

More than 74,000 students found a university place in Clearing last summer. Every year, there are scores of universities to choose from in Clearing, including some of the most prestigious. 
Not every university will offer places in Clearing, but here we’ve got the highest-ranking universities that are offering places this summer. 

We’ve combed through the 2024 Clearing course spaces and cross-referenced them against university league tables to find the 15 highest-ranked universities with undergraduate places available in Clearing. 

Clearing vacancies are updated regularly throughout the Clearing period (which runs from July through to October). Once A-level results have been released, Clearing spaces at these universities can be expected to fill up quickly.

To check on the latest vacancies, check the Ucas Search page or visit the specific university website. You can also find a handy cheat-sheet of university contact details over on The Student Room

All university rankings on this page reference the latest Complete University Guide main league table. The universities in this list had undergraduate places in at least three different courses when Clearing opened on 5 July 2024.

Loughborough university logo on a hot air balloon

Loughborough University 

Uni ranking | 6th

Based on the UK's largest university campus, Loughborough University is highly regarded for its engineering and technology courses. On its website, Loughborough describes its science park as one of the biggest in the UK and “home to over 90 start-ups, growing businesses, global brands, and sports organisations”. The university is also well-known for its impressive sports facilities and achievements. 



Durham University campus

Durham University

Uni ranking | 7th

Established in 1832, Durham University is the third oldest university in the UK. The university has a traditional collegiate system, with over 20,000 students split between their 17 colleges. The university ranks in the top 10 league tables for 31 subjects, including chemistry, computer science, economics and mathematics.

University of Bath campus

University of Bath

Uni ranking | 8th

Bath is highly regarded for the quality of its teaching and research, as well as its effectiveness in preparing students for the workplace. Most of the undergraduate courses at Bath include the option to do a professional placement. The university has also picked up some notable awards and rankings in recent years. Bath was ‘Good University of the Year 2023’ in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide, and it also got the top spot for student experience in England in the National Student Survey 2022. The city of Bath is a Unesco World Heritage Site.

University of Warwick campus

University of Warwick

Uni ranking | 10th=

Warwick is a large university with a strong reputation. During the academic year 2023/24, there were more than 29,000 students at this Russell Group university. In 2023, it was awarded gold in all categories of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). In 2025, the university will celebrate its 60th anniversary.

Lancaster University

Lancaster University

Uni ranking | 10th=

A research-intensive institution established in 1964, Lancaster University is home to more than 12,000 undergraduate students. The university is based on a 560-acre campus in the countryside, with the city of Lancaster three miles down the road. It’s one of the few UK universities to have a collegiate system, with all students belonging to one of the university’s nine colleges.

The University of Surrey campus in Guildford

University of Surrey

Uni ranking | 12th

The University of Surrey’s focus on building the employability of its students was recognised in 2022, when it was named University of the Year for Graduate Employment in The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide. The university, which is home to more than 15,000 students, is ranked near (or at) the top of the league tables for subjects including paramedic science, music, drama and nursing, among others.

University of Birmingham

University of Birmingham

Uni ranking | 13th

A large red-brick university founded in 1900, the University of Birmingham is a member of the Russell Group and ranked 80th in the world in the QS World University Rankings 2025. Its greenery-filled campus is located at Edgbaston. Students can be in the city centre in minutes by train, but on a sunny day might prefer to take the 30 minute walk alongside the canal. Subjects where the university does well in the league tables include chemical engineering, physiotherapy and creative writing.

University of Exeter

University of Exeter

Uni ranking | 14th

A member of the Russell Group since 2012, the University of Exeter has campuses in Truro and Penryn, as well as Exeter, and hosts more than 23,000 undergraduate students. In the Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024, Exeter was runner-up for the University of the Year award; the second year in a row this had happened.

The University of Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh

Uni ranking | 15th

A large university with a hefty reputation, the University of Edinburgh is home to more than 25,000 undergraduate students. Many courses are based in the central area of Edinburgh, but some - such as veterinary science - are on the outskirts. The university counts Charles Darwin, Robert Louis Stevenson and Charles Darwin among its alumni as well as, more recently, Olympic track cycling champion Sir Chris Hoy and political journalist Laura Kuenssberg.

University of Bristol

University of Bristol

Uni ranking | 16th

As well as ranking 16th in the Complete University Guide league table, the University of Bristol also comes 16th in the most recent People & Planet University League, which is ranked by environmental and ethical performance. With its focus on sustainability, the university aims to become a net zero carbon campus by 2030. Fun fact: Ribena was invented at the university by scientist Dr Vernon Charley in 1936.

A University of York building

University of York

Uni ranking | 17th

The University of York was established in 1963 and has been a member of the Russell Group since 2012. It’s a great pick for nature lovers: the university campus stretches across 500 acres, with lakes, wetlands, gardens and parks. In 1967, shortly after the university was founded, Jimi Hendrix performed on campus. There is still a hall named after him.

University of Sheffield

University of Sheffield

Uni ranking | 18th

Sheffield is a Russell Group university with more than 30,000 students. It ranks highly for many subjects, including law, psychology and engineering, while the active students' union has more than 350 clubs and societies. Students might also like to visit the unique and unusual Alfred Denny Museum; still referred to as ‘the secret museum’ (although tours can now be booked). Included in this collection of biology curiosities is the skull of a ‘terror bird’; an extinct carnivorous bird that could grow up to 10 feet tall.

University of Liverpool

University of Liverpool

Uni ranking | 19th

One of the original ‘redbrick’ universities in the UK, the University of Liverpool is also a founding member of the Russell Group. The university has more than 22,000 undergraduate students, with 98% of its graduates in work or further study six months after leaving. Its Latin motto ‘Haec otia studia fovent’ translates to ‘These days of peace foster learning’.

University of Southampton

University of Southampton

Uni ranking | 20th

Another Russell Group university with places available in Clearing, Southampton is home to more than 23,000 students. The university has seven campuses with the main one based in the centre of Southampton. It is near the top of university league tables for a range of courses, including nursing (ranked 6th globally in the QS World University Rankings), archaeology and earth & marine sciences.

UEA (University of East Anglia)

UEA (University of East Anglia)

Uni ranking | 21st

Located on the outskirts of Norwich, the University of East Anglia's campus includes the eye-catching Sainsbury Centre which has doubled as the home of the Avengers in several blockbuster movies. Indeed, UEA is not short of iconic architecture. Its famous ‘ziggurat’ halls of residence (pictured} are a symbol of the university and Grade II listed accommodation. The university has more than 19,000 students and is highly rated for a range of courses including art, business and politics.

Our partnership with UEA (University of East Anglia)

The Student Room is proud to work with UEA, a UK top-25 university (Complete University Guide 2025) and UK top-30 university (The Times/Sunday Times 2024), as the official partner of our student life section.

Located on the edge of Norwich, a lively city full of secret gems just waiting to be discovered.

Visit their profile page to learn more or join the conversation on The Student Room's UEA forum.

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