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These universities came at the very bottom of the Times uni ranking

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Times Higher Education (THE) has just released its latest World University Rankings league table for 2018.

The usual suspects sit at the top of the tree (we’re looking at you, Oxbridge) - but at the bottom-end the picture looks a little less rosy for four UK universities in particular: University of Derby, London South Bank University, Robert Gordon University, and Sheffield Hallam.

These four institutions each scored an overall score of 21.4, out of a possible 100.

At least THE had the heart not to single out one university as the absolute ‘worst’ in the UK. Silver linings, eh?

If you’re currently studying at one of these unis, don’t despair - because looking a bit deeper, you'll see that this isn't the full story. 

The ranking is based on factors including teaching, research, knowledge transfer and international outlook, and only 93 UK universities make the THE list, out of more than 200 in the country overall. 

This is because only research-intensive universities are included in the table. 

And, because it's a global top 1,000, that means only 5% of the world's approximately 20,000 universities are included. 

So, as THE itself says, "making the top 1,000 represents a real achievement in itself."

Looking a little bit brighter now, isn't it? 

You can read more about the THE methodology here

Added to this, the vocational courses offered by these universities probably mean you'll graduate with a bunch of highly sought-after practical skills that those who've spent three years in a stuffy library can only dream about. 

On the other hand, if you’re not sure about going to uni at all it's definitely worth considering the other options on the table.

Apprenticeships are on the rise, allowing you to earn money and qualifications without the burden of student debt. Internships and work placements are also a good stepping stone to bide your time and pick up experience.

There’s always the option of long-term travel to ‘find your calling’ too. Travelling opens your mind, and that’s far more important than picking up a piece of paper from a Russell Group.

If you need a bit of career guidance, head over to www.TheBigChoice.com – these guys provide careers and education advice for anyone aged 16-25. Sign up for a free profile to connect with the employers and universities on there.

Do you study at the University of Derby, London South Bank University, Robert Gordon University or Sheffield Hallam? Want to tell us why it's great? Let us know in the comments... 

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