Good University Guide 2023

Ravensbourne University, London

National rank

Firsts / 2:1s
Completion rate

Key stats

Teaching quality
Student experience
Research quality
Graduate prospects
Ravensbourne University, London

Contact details


6 Penrose Way, Greenwich Peninsula, London , SE10 0EW,

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Ravensbourne remains in the bottom three of our league table, despite moving up one place in our latest Good University Guide. But that is not putting off prospective students going by the 30 per cent increase in applications to Ravensbourne by the end of March 2022, compared with the same point in the admissions cycle a year earlier. An expanded portfolio of courses, particularly in the areas of business and computing, accounts for much of the growth, but increased recruitment and outreach activity has contributed to rising demand across the board.

Digital content creation, digital marketing, business management and computer science were among the degrees introduced for 2022-23. The university has also launched three-week online courses in brand strategy, strategic design, influencer marketing and creative communication with the FutureLearn platform, as an introduction to the respective fields.

A striking building next to the O2 Arena on the Greenwich Peninsula is one obvious attraction to applicants. But, like some other specialist arts universities, Ravensbourne is held back by poor student satisfaction. Although its ratings improved in the latest National Student Survey, Ravensbourne remained in the bottom three for satisfaction with the wider undergraduate experience (129th) and only 11 places higher for how students evaluate the teaching quality (118=). 

However, the university has a silver award in the Teaching Excellence Framework, praised by assessors for close collaboration with industry. Ravensbourne hosts more than 100 creative technology businesses that utilise its technology and media resources, while also collaborating with students.

The Institute for Creativity and Technology, which opened last year, markets itself as an “ecosystem of professional partnerships, industry networks, business incubation and an internationally recognised transdisciplinary team”. Its aluminium-clad building houses the university’s postgraduate provision and the CreativeLab in-house creative agency, as well as incubation and research activities. 

Ravensbourne also fares well in our social inclusion index, with relatively high proportions of white working-class males (6.6 per cent, 34th) and students from ethnic minorities (49.6 per cent, 30th). There are progression agreements with schools and colleges that have high proportions of pupils in receipt of free school meals, and where there are low levels of progression to higher education. All new students receive a £100 voucher towards course materials, rising to £500 for those from low-income households, who receive cash awards of the same value in the second and third years.

The official entry requirement at A-level is a modest two Cs, but candidates on most courses are judged primarily on their portfolio or showreel and on performance at interview. Most successful applicants comfortably exceed the minimum requirement — Ravensbourne is not in the bottom 20 on this measure in our table. Most also thrive on their course — the measure of good honours is by far the university’s strongest suit in our league table. It has jumped more than 30 places and into this year’s top 40 for the proportion awarded firsts or 2:1 degrees.

Ravensbourne achieved university status only five years ago. Established in 1962 from the merger of Bromley, Beckenham and Sidcup art schools, its degrees were validated by the University of the Arts London until 2018. It moved to the Greenwich peninsula in 2010 and is an important part of the developing Greenwich design district.

Ravensbourne describes itself as a specialist creative university, designed for industry. Majoring in design and digital media, it wants to be recognised as a national and international leader in creative industries education and training. A partnership with Berghs School of Communication, in Stockholm, began in 2019, bringing Swedish students to the university, although the process was inevitably interrupted by the pandemic.

The university entered the Research Excellence Framework for the first time in 2021, having opted out of the previous national assessment in 2014 during its college days. Almost 40 per cent of its submission in art and design was rated world-leading or internationally excellent, although it enters our research quality index, comparing improvements across institutions, in the bottom ten.

Ravensbourne’s best-known alumni include the fashion designers Clare Waight Keller of Givenchy, who designed the dress that Meghan Markle wore for her wedding to Prince Harry, and Stella McCartney, who studied for her foundation degree at Ravensbourne College of Design and Communication (as the university was formerly named). Jay Osgerby, co-designer of the Olympic 2012 torch, and the stand-up comedian Andi Osho studied at Ravensbourne too.

The university does not own or manage halls of residence but works with a number of private providers and host families to arrange accommodation and secure discounts for those on low incomes. There are no university-owned sports facilities either but students have easy access to local facilities across Greenwich and Charlton. The students’ union supports several sporting societies and signposts which local facilities offer deals.

A renowned market and plenty of pubs, bars and restaurants provide local entertainment, while the Jubilee line brings central London within easy reach. On the cultural side, Maritime Greenwich has World Heritage status, with the Royal Observatory, the Cutty Sark and National Maritime Museum all on the doorstep of the campus.

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Category Score Rank
Ranking - 130 (131)
Teaching quality 70 118th=
Student experience 58.6 129th
Research quality 13.5 125th
Ucas entry points 113 106th=
Graduate prospects 64 122nd
Firsts and 2:1s 81.5 40th
Completion rate 79.5 104th=
Student-staff ratio 24.6 128th

Vital statistics











Applications/places 3,235/885
Applications/places ratio 3.7:1
Overall offer rate 95.1%


Places in accommodation 100
Accommodation costs £169 - £408
Accommodation contact


UK/EU fees £9,250
Fees (placement year) N/A
Fees (overseas year) N/A
Fees (international) £16,500
Finance website
Graduate salaries £23,000

Social inclusion and student mix

Social Inclusion Ranking 20
State schools (non-grammar) admissions 93.7%
Grammar school admissions 1.9%
Independent school admissions 4.4%
Ethnic minority students (all) 49.6%
Black achievement gap -18.1%
White working class males 6.6%
First generation students 47.8%
Low participation areas 6%
Working class dropout gap 6%
Mature 18.7%
EU students 7.4%
Other overseas students 6.1%

Student satisfaction with teaching quality

Art and design 72.4%
Architecture 68.4%
Drama, dance and cinematics 65.7%
Electrical and electronic engineering 61.4%