University College London

University College London

University College London, commonly known as UCL, is the oldest multi-faculty constituent college of the University of London, one of the two original founding colleges, and the first British University to be founded on a non-religious basis. With 21,800 staff and students, UCL is one of the largest colleges of the University and is larger than most other universities in the United Kingdom. It is a member of the Russell Group of Universities, a part of the 'G5' sub-group of elite universities, and a part of the Golden Triangle.

UCL consistently ranks among the top five university institutions in the UK league tables and in the top 25 universities across the world, with an annual turnover of over £550 million.In 2005, UCL was granted the power to award its own degrees, and currently offers its students a choice of a UCL or a University of London degree. The current provost of UCL is Professor Malcolm Grant.

UCL was founded in 1826 under the name "London University", as a secular alternative to the religious universities of Oxford and Cambridge. The philosopher Jeremy Bentham is considered to be the spiritual father of UCL as he played a major role in the development of the College.

It became University College London in 1836 and acquired degree-awarding powers, when it joined with King's College London to create the new University of London. In 1907 the University of London was reconstituted and many of the colleges, including UCL, lost their separate legal existence. This continued until 1977 when a new charter restored UCL's independence.

UCL has a long-running, mostly friendly rivalry with King's College London. UCL is often referred to by students from the latter using nicknames such as the "Godless Scum of Gower Street", in reference to a comment made at the founding of KCL, which was based on Christian principles. UCL students and staff also refer to King's as "Strand Polytechnic" in a similar attitude. Historically the university rivalry was known as 'Rags'.

KCL's mascot, "Reggie", was lost for many years in the 1990s. It was recovered after being found dumped in a field, restored at the cost of around £15,000 and placed on display in the students' union.It is in a glass case and filled with concrete to prevent theft, particularly by UCL students who once castrated it. (KCL, to be fair, had also stolen one UCL mascot, Phineas).It is often claimed that KCL students played football with the embalmed head of Jeremy Bentham. Although the head was indeed stolen, the football story is a myth which is denied by official UCL documentation about Bentham found next to his display case (his Auto Icon) in the college cloisters. The head is now kept in the college vaults.
UCL's research and teaching is organised within a network of faculties and academic departments.
In order to facilitate greater interdisciplinary interaction in research and teaching, UCL have also recently introduced a model of strategic faculty groupings, with three new schools covering:
UCL School of Life and Medical Sciences (comprising UCL Biomedical Sciences and UCL Life Sciences)
UCL Built Environment, UCL Engineering Sciences and UCL Mathematical & Physical Sciences
UCL Arts & Humanities, UCL Laws, UCL Social & Historical Sciences and the UCL School of Slavonic & East European Studies.
The list below includes the various academic units operating within each of these schools. These units include, as well as the established faculties and departments, a range of other, less formal academic groupings based within academic departments or operating as distinct academic entities within faculties.
UCL Arts & Humanities
UCL Bartlett, Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL Biomedical Sciences
UCL Engineering Sciences
UCL Laws
UCL Life Sciences
UCL Mathematical & Physical Sciences
UCL Social & Historical Sciences
UCL School of Slavonic & East European Studies
UCL Interdepartmental and cross-faculty research groups and centres

University College London ranked 9th in the 2007 THES-QS World University ranking

University College London ranked 7th in the 2008 THES-QS World University Ranking

University College London ranked 4th in the 2009 THES-QS World University Ranking

University College London ranked 4th in the 2010 QS World University Ranking

University College London ranked 7th in the 2011 QS World University Ranking

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