I do still love twitter for the flashes of insight and humanity from people who inspire me. One account I love to follow is that of Elizabeth Gadd – I learn a lot from her astute professional and practitioner insight into the world of research policy (and especially research metrics) as it has a continued impact on researchers and the staff who support them.
This morning saw her ponder why UCL got to say it was “London’s Global University”.
Is UCL’s claim to be “London’s Global University” based on any evidence? And how do other London universities feel about this claim? pic.twitter.com/Ujseek710V
— Dr Elizabeth Gadd 💙 (@LizzieGadd) April 16, 2021
She suggested I would know, and of course I don’t – off hand. I went to table 1 from the HESA Students record (and the combined 054 collection rather than 051 which is really only for time series). Here’s a quick plot of the proportion of non-uk versus UK domiciled students at all levels at providers in London.
The chart is sorted by the size of the total student body – with the red bar from the top showing the proportion of non-UK students and the actual number in the tool tip.
As you can see, UCL does not have the highest proportion of international students of any provider in London – that honour goes to Hult International Business School, with 95.9 per cent of its student body from overseas. UCL has a respectable proportional showing at 49.1 per cent, but this is beaten by the University of the Arts (53.9%), Imperial College (53.9%), the LSE (67.8%), and the Royal College of Art (74.7%) to name just a few.
But UCL does have the largest number of students from outside of the UK – an amazing 20,170 in 2019-20. It if you look at just undergraduates, just post-graduates, just first years, or just full time students this dominance is clear.
So that’s why. UCL recruits more international students than any other provider – not just in London, but across the whole UK.
Where do UCL students come from?