The University of Leeds, situated in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England, originated in 1874 as the Yorkshire College of Science. In 1884, it merged with the Leeds School of Medicine, established in 1831, and was subsequently renamed Yorkshire College. Joining the federal Victoria University in 1887 alongside Owens College and University College Liverpool, it acquired its royal charter in 1904 from King Edward VII.

As the eleventh-largest university in the United Kingdom by total enrollment, the University of Leeds attracts over 67,000 undergraduate applications annually, ranking as the fifth-most sought-after university in the UK by application volume. In the fiscal year 2022–23, the university reported an income of £979.5 million, with £184.9 million originating from research grants and contracts. With financial endowments totaling £83.2 million in 2023, the university stands among the top twenty British universities in terms of financial endowment.

The University of Leeds boasts notable alumni, including the current Leader of the Labour Party, Keir Starmer, former Home and Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, former co-chairman of the Conservative Party Sayeeda Warsi, NASA astronaut Piers Sellers, and six Nobel laureates.


Leeds achieved a joint 20th position, sharing the spot with the University of Exeter, among multi-faculty institutions in the UK for the quality (GPA) of its research and secured the 8th position for its Research Power in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework. In the 2014-2015 period, Leeds was the 10th most targeted British university by graduate employers, experiencing a slight decrease from its 8th position in the preceding 2014 rankings.

According to the 2021 Times Higher Education World University Rankings, Leeds was positioned 153rd globally, and in the CWTS Leiden Ranking, it holds the 84th spot worldwide. In the 2023 QS World University Rankings, Leeds is ranked 86th globally and 13th in the UK. The university earned the prestigious title of University of the Year in 2017, as recognized by The Times and The Sunday Times' Good University Guide. Additionally, in 2019, it secured the 150th position among universities worldwide according to the SCImago Institutions Rankings.

Organizational Structure and Governance

The university's schools, institutes, and centers are systematically organized into seven faculties, each overseen by a dean, pro-deans, and central functions:

  1. Arts, Humanities and Cultures:
    • English
    • History
    • Philosophy, Religion and History of Science
    • Institute for Colonial and Postcolonial Studies
    • Leeds Humanities Research Institute
    • Institute for Medieval Studies
    • Languages, Cultures and Societies
    • School of Media and Communication
    • Design
    • Fine Art, History of Art & Cultural Studies
    • Music
    • Performance and Cultural Industries
  2. Biological Sciences:
    • School of Biology
    • School of Biomedical Sciences
    • School of Molecular and Cellular Biology
    • Undergraduate School of Biological Sciences
    • Graduate School of Biological Sciences
  3. Business:
    • Accounting and Finance
    • Economics
    • International Business
    • Management
    • Marketing
    • Work and Employment Relations
  4. Social Sciences:
    • Education
    • Law
    • Politics and International Studies
    • Sociology and Social Policy
    • Graduate School
  5. Engineering and Physical Sciences:
    • Chemical and Process Engineering
    • Civil Engineering
    • Computing
    • Electronic and Electrical Engineering
    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Chemistry
    • Food Science and Nutrition
    • Mathematics
    • Physics and Astronomy
  6. Environment:
    • Earth and Environment
    • Geography
    • Institute for Transport Studies
  7. Medicine and Health:
    • Leeds Dental Institute
    • Healthcare
    • Medicine
    • Leeds Institute of Genetics, Health and Therapeutics
    • Leeds Institute of Health Sciences
    • Leeds Institute of Medical Education
    • Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine
    • Institute of Psychological Sciences


In 2009, the University of Leeds received the Queen's Anniversary Prize for its outstanding contributions to engineering and technology.

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