11 Signs That Show You Were Educated at a Russell Group University


If you’re currently at sixth form, or just finishing college, your teachers are probably trying to nudge you towards applying for a Russell Group University. The Russell Group represents 24 leading UK Universities that are committed to providing the very best research, teaching and learning experience and unrivalled links with the business and public sector. These institutions are considered ‘elite’; Cardiff, Bristol, Sheffield, Durham and Warwick are just a few of the Universities that carry out some of the most highly rated research in the world, and also have an international reputation for academic excellence.

These Universities can be found in all four nations and every major UK city, operating globally to attract students and staff from countries all over the world. Students can choose from a huge variety of programmes that are internationally renowned- from business, to social science and humanities, to medical, biological and physical sciences. More than half a million students are enrolled at Russell Group Universities- that’s a whopping one in five of all the UK’s Higher Education students!

According to Wendy Piatt, the Director of the Russell Group, these prolific Universities have a much higher than average student satisfaction and lower than average drop-out rates:

“Graduate recruiters rank 10 Russell Group Universities in the Top 30 Universities worldwide, and Russell Group graduates typically receive a 10% salary ‘top-up’ over others.”

These modern Universities are innovative and reputable, and are a sure-fire way to get your foot firmly rooted in that doorway to success. It takes a certain kind of person to apply to a Russell Group University, so we have compiled a list of 11 signs that show you received a Russell Group education:

1. You earn an extra £3.63 an hour compared to your non-Russell graduate friends.

ONS/ Via ons.gov.uk

It’s true! Does that make the blood, sweat and tears of all those college years seem worth it after all? Because it should!

A typical UK graduate earns approximately £30,000 a year, whereas most people who never progressed from GCSE level will not meet the average national salary at any point in their lives.

And you can almost guarantee that the mega-earners will have gone to University!

The reason that Russell Group students can expect a higher salary is because these institutions produce more highly skilled graduates, and are therefore likely to receive a higher average hourly wage.

2. You have incredibly high hopes for your offspring (even though at this point, they are little more than a twinkle in your eye…) and have plans to prepare them for the Russell Group from a very young age…

You know what they say- the apple never falls far from the tree!

Via Giphy

Afterall, you can never be too young to forge an empire!

Via Memegen

3. You are smug in the fact that you already earned a salary, and that your prestigious qualification means your pay packet is likely to keep rising until you are well into your forties!

ONS/ Via ons.gov.uk

To the utter annoyance of your non-Russell friends, you have a right to be smug! In your final year of Uni, it may have felt like there was no coming back from three years of intense brain flexes, and it took a couple of months for the inside of your skull to thicken up from the consistency of cold porridge…

But you did it! And those brain flexes will continue to pay off for the rest of your adult life- kudos to you!

4. Now that you’ve achieved a Russell Group qualification, people tend to assume that you’re really intelligent without you having to try hard at all…

Via Pinterest.

Just continue to highlight your animosity towards every major publication’s opinion section and no one will ever know…

Blogspot/ Via JasonInHollywood

5. If anything, you felt a lot smarter BEFORE you went to University…

Damn, those brain cells really suffered!

6. You purposely meet up with friends so you can brag about how much sleep you’ve had to sacrifice in the name of success.

Via Memegrind.

“I’ve told you already- I’ll sleep when I’m dead!”

The National Sleep Foundation recommends around 7-9 hours sleep per night for those aged 16-64, but we often hear the world’s elite claiming they need much less; for example, Silvio Berlusconi claims to need just 2-4 hours of shut eye a day, whilst Donald Trump catches his z’s for just 3-4 hours a day.

7. You nearly burst a blood vessel every time you hear of a smart, successful person who graduated from a University you’ve never heard of- you nearly burst 3 when you find they didn’t graduate at all!

Ever heard of Mark Zuckerberg? Steve Jobs? Bill Gates? Oprah Winfrey? F. Scott Fitzgerald?

Me neither…

8. Sunrise still brings on deep twangs of dread, reminiscent of the week before your dissertation deadline…

Via Pinterest.

9. … and so does the sickly stench of energy drinks.

You can’t deny that this was a real low point in your life.

10. You have accepted that your First with Honours was the result of a perfect blend of sweat, tears, insomnia and really speedy typing…

Via Giphy.

11. …But you got that First nonetheless, and made some incredibly intellectual friends along the way!

Via Giphy.

Those diamond memories will last a lifetime, and you wouldn’t change them for the world!


Read on to learn more about some of the UK’s leading Russell Group Universities:

Cardiff University, Wales

Cardiff University is ranked among the 25 best universities in the UK. It is a member of the Russell Group of UK research intensive universities, and the 12th largest in the UK in terms of student numbers. It offers high quality degrees, provides support and experience, and prepares excellent students for a successful career.

Teaching takes place in a research environment and students benefit from interaction with researchers who work at the frontiers of knowledge in their disciplines. Students gain the most up-to-date knowledge from pioneers of the industry.

Cardiff welcomes more than 26,000 students who represent over 120 countries, and is very proud of its friendly international community. Students have the opportunity to volunteer, join clubs and societies, and take part in many extra-curricular activities to meet people, socialise and make the most of their University experience. After graduating, students become part of an alumni network of 170,000.

Cardiff University was ranked 135th out of 10,000 universities worldwide in 2011, and in the latest assessment of research quality it was ranked 15th in the UK. Two of its staff are Nobel Prize Laureate and the university has won three Queen’s Anniversary Prize in 15 years, and consistently ranks in the top 10 for many different subjects.

Bristol University, England

There are many reasons to study at the University of Bristol. It is a world-renowned institution whose academic achievements place it among the very best in the world. Students are taught by internationally respected lecturers, and study alongside some of the brightest individuals from all over the world with 20,000 students from over 130 countries.

The University of Bristol has upheld a reputation for innovation and excellence since it was established in 1876. Supported by even the likes of Sir Winston Churchill who was Chancellor of the University from 1929 until 1965. The University of Bristol consistently ranks in the top 10 universities in the UK and top 30 in the world. Its excellent education is reflected in its results, with 84% of students being awarded a First or Upper Second Class in 2011/12. Bristol is one of the five most targeted universities by top employers and boasts numerous successful alumni. Demonstrated by the 11 Nobel prizes that have been awarded to University of Bristol graduates and members of staff (including author and playwright Harold Pinter).

The University of Bristol aims to educate students so they can excel in their future careers. It provides the best student experience by continually investing in new and existing facilities, accommodation, and student services. The research-led courses provide high quality training and equip students with the skills needed in order to prepare for a successful career. Studying at University of Bristol gives students the chance to explore a subject with the world’s leading academics amongst other passionate students.

The university presents a warm and friendly atmosphere with: personal tutors; accommodation wardens; and student health & welfare services. However, it is big enough to provide outstanding extracurricular opportunities as well. There are hundreds of student societies that will give you the opportunity to broaden your horizons and forge lifelong interests and friendships.

University of Bristol attracts research grants from some of the world’s most prominent funding organisations. It also attracts investment from industry and global businesses, and is involved in numerous international research collaborations.

Durham University, England

A world-class institution with a history of welcoming students and academics from across the globe, Durham University has been ranked by the Times Higher Education as one of the top 100 institutions in the world for international outlook. The University’s collaboration with a diverse range of international universities encourages students to engage in intercultural learning and develop a global perspective, meaning that they are in high demand on their entry into the global employment market.

Durham University is situated in the heart of the matchless cathedral city of Durham in the North-East of England, an area  renowned for its beautiful countryside, intriguing heritage and striking coastline. With a student community of 15,000 and numerous academic, historic, sporting and social opportunities, the institution inspires each of its students to grow both intellectually and personally.

As one of the UK’s prestigious Russell Group universities, Durham’s outstanding tuition is underpinned by world-class research; a place at this institution is one of the most sought-after in Britain. All students are taught by highly skilled, experienced members of staff who promote academic excellence and operate at the forefront of their disciplines.

One of the University’s many unique features is its collegiate system, which centres on 16 colleges and societies that provide social, domestic and pastoral support for each student. Following acceptance to the University, each student is assigned to a college which will not only act as a base throughout their studies, but will also aid their development by facilitating mentoring and involvement with college life, sports and community engagement.

University of Sheffield, England

A global leader in the fields of teaching and research, the University of Sheffield is ranked among the top ten universities in the UK in the QS World and Shanghai Jiao Tong University Rankings. Committed to shaping the minds of the next generation, the University has produced a large number of highly successful, famous graduates, among whom are five Nobel Prize winners.

The University of Sheffield’s status as a proudly global institution was recently recognised at the Times Higher Education (THE) Awards 2014. The institution won the prestigious awards for the Widening Participation Initiative of the Year, Outstanding International Student Strategy and Outstanding Support for Early Career Researchers, all of which further strengthen Sheffield’s position as an international centre for achievement and ambition.

All members of staff at Sheffield are dedicated experts in their fields who are respected among their peers at institutions across the globe, from Harvard to Tokyo. As part of their efforts to challenge students to achieve their very best, tutors encourage all those enrolled to think beyond their subject areas by working with other students from diverse disciplines. The majority of the numerous undergraduate and postgraduate courses offered at Sheffield are founded on intensive, applied research, allowing students to engage with issues as diverse as complex business problems, social issues or current global challenges. Each course has been designed to educate, challenge and inspire.

University of Warwick, England

The University of Warwick’s rise to prominence speaks for itself. Founded in 1995 on the outskirts of Coventry in the West Midlands, it is now one of the best universities in the UK and consistently ranks at the top of the UK league tables. The University’s entrepreneurial spirit combine with extensive business and industry to create an ideal learning environment for international students with big career ambitions.

Postgraduate students are attracted by the University of Warwick’s research record. According to the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, Warwick is ranked seventh in the UK. Furthermore, several departments within the university – spanning film studies to engineering — ranked in top 10. That makes Warwick a promising destination for international postgraduate students as well.

The University of Warwick’s accolades are impressive. QS World University Rankings places it third in the world among universities less than 50 years old. This is also one of only three multi-faculty universities in the UK to never rank outside of the top ten on national ranking tables (Oxford and Cambridge are the other two). In short, if you’re looking for a forward-thinking university with an unquestionable record of excellence, the University of Warwick is a top choice.


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