Times League Table

14th April 2000

 

The performance of UK universities continues to be clouded by the annual appearance of newspaper league tables whose value is doubtful.

 

We are disappointed that national newspapers are still publishing flawed and subjective league tables despite the fact that HEFCE (the Higher Education Funding Council) now publishes comprehensive data comparing universities’ performance.

 

In these official performance indicators the university beat 19 out of 20 of the benchmarks set by HEFCE. This league table does not take these official benchmarks into account.

 

Newspaper league tables such as that published today by The Times rely on outdated statistics, mostly from 1997/8, and attempt the impossible by seeking to compare institutions that have widely differing areas of specialism and which exist to serve the community in different ways.

 

Teaching Assessments

 

The university’s score of 64/100 is the same as last year and therefore does not take into account the recent three assessments where the university scored 21/24, 21/24 and 20/24.

Only 8 of our departments have so far been assessed. All were graded as satisfactory or better. We have posted three of our four best scores since November 1999 but none of these assessments has yet been published, so none appears in this league table.

 

No mention is ever made in league tables of those 14 institutions - including at least one ‘old’ university - that have failed a teaching quality assessment.

 

Research

 

We have always positioned ourselves as primarily a teaching and learning institution.

The data used in this league table were collated in 1997. We currently are working on a selective research strategy which seeks to improve our research performance and hence the figures shown in this table.

 

Entry standards

 

The figures relate to 1996/7 and are three years out of date. Our average points requirement for 1997/8 was between 13 and 14, and our average for 1998/9 was between 14 and 15 - so we are making a steady improvement which is not reflected in this ranking.

 

 

Staff/Student ratio

The university is placed 45/97. ULH is the single biggest provider of of franchised HE courses in the UK with 25 per cent of our students following franchised programmes. Franchised students are included but not franchised staff.

Library / computer spending

 

These figures relate to 1995/96, 97/98 and do not take into account the significant investment in both Hull and Lincoln since that time. In particular, the university opened a new £11 million Learning Resource and Media Production Centre in Lincoln in October 1998. The university should have done a good deal better than its place of 50/97 because of this investment. ULH also has more computers than any other university in the country and it is quite incredulous that this is not taken into account.

 

Facilities spending

 

Investment in the Lincoln campus currently totals £50 million and more developments are on the way: work is now under way to build a £5.5 million science facility and a sport and leisure facility, both of which will be open in the autumn of 2000. None of these developments is reflected in the Times league table. Another £48 million will be invested with the proposed Island Wharf development in Hull.

 

Jez Ashberry, Sam Hendley 14/4/00