Student life

Top political universities... As voted by students [2013-14]

By Rebecca Hughes (Digital content producer, Which? University) - 10 September 2013

Source: Queens University Belfast
Want to study a political course or simply keen to get involved in campaigning or debating while you’re at university? Find out from current students which universities across the UK come out on top for having a strong political scene.


Thanks to the views of over 16,000 current students, we've found out first-hand how they rate their university on a whole range of extra-curricular characteristics, including creative scene, sports and local nightlife.

You can also compare this year's round-up with 2012's top political unis... 

Top political unis - as voted by students

By political scene we're talking about the range of different political groups and activities, such as meetings and demonstrations, and whether politics is a visible part of the university experience.

Here are the results, plus a little taster of what each university could offer you…

SOAS, University of London

What students say...

Strong political spirit in the Union also means that it is possible to get involved in things such as protests, awareness raising and volunteering for subjects that matter to students.   Fourth Year Japanese Studies

London School of Economics and Political Science, University of London

Did you know...

Situated very closely to government and parliament, the University is a political hub and has regular guest speakers. Recent visitors have included President Bill Clinton and the Dalai Lama. 

University of Oxford

Did you know...

David Cameron is an Oxford graduate – as are many of Britain’s previous prime ministers, including Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair.

Goldsmiths, University of London

What students say...

Advantage of it being a small, arts and creatives based institution means can offer a radical slant on things. New viewpoints, lefty political scene.  Second Year Media Student

University of Sussex

What students say...

There is also a strong ethos about getting involved in politics and social issues.  First Year Sociology Student

University of Cambridge

Did you know...

The SU has a vast number of campaigns you could get involved with, including the Mental Wealth Campaign and Zero Tolerance to Sexual Harrassment, as well as campaigns targeted at local government such as the Right to Light petition.

University of Glasgow

Did you know...

The Politics society mixes political discussion with fun get-togethers, running socials such as Pints and Politics and the American Politics pub quiz.

University College London, University of London

Did you know...

The Debating Society is UCL’s oldest society, running Monday debates on a range of topical issues (often attracting high-profile guest speakers) and Thursday workshops for those who want to improve their debating skills.

University of Edinburgh

Did you know…

Edinburgh University's Politics and International Relations Society is one of the oldest and largest societies at the uni (it's been going for almost a hundred years!) and former speakers include prime minister Gordon Brown.

University of Birmingham

Did you know...

You could get involved in the Guild Council, the student parliament of the university, contributing to decision-making on issues affecting students.

University of Sheffield

Did you know…

Sheffield Uni is big on campaigning - its current campaigning groups include the Living Wage Society and Fund Education Not War.

Queen's University Belfast

Did you know...

The Centre for Advancement of Women in Politics is based in Queen's University Belfast's School of Politics. 
We rate universities and students' unions by different extra-curricular aspects where we have 30 or more responses from students.