Where we rank

Heriot-Watt University is consistently ranked at a high level across a number of key university league tables.

From our research performance to student satisfaction, graduate employability and the quality of our teaching, Heriot-Watt's status as a world-class university is independently confirmed.

Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2018

The Times Higher Education World University Rankings use 13 performance indicators to examine universities across all of their core missions – teaching, research, knowledge transfer and international outlook.

  • Ranked in the top 400 universities worldwide (351-400).
  • Heriot-Watt is ranked 41st in the world, 15th in the UK and 3rd in Scotland for our international outlook, a score based on the percentage of the university's international staff, the level of international co-authorship of academic papers and the percentage of international students studying with the University. 

View the Times Higher Education World University Rankings

Times Higher Education 'Table of Tables'

THE's 'Table of Tables' is the combined results of the three main UK university league tables - the Good University Guide (published by The Times and The Sunday Times), The Guardian and The Complete University Guide.

  • In the Table of Tables 2015: Heriot-Watt is placed 27th in the UK and 3rd in Scotland

View the Times Higher Education Table of Tables

Guardian University Guide 2018

View the Guardian University league table

  • Ranked 26th in the UK and 4th in Scotland
  • 2nd in UK for Building and Town & Country Planning 
  • 3rd the UK for Economics
  • Top ten in UK for for Accounting & Finance and Business Management & Marketing
  • 1st in Scotland Accounting & Finance, Building and Town & Country Planning, Economics and Chemical Engineering
  • ​2nd in Scotland for six subjects:  Chemistry and Mechanical Engineering.
National Student Survey 2017

The National Student Survey (NSS) is a survey which gathers honest feedback from final year undergraduates, studying full time.

  • At least 80% of students were satisfied overall with their course in 14 of our 21 subject areas
  • 1st in Scotland for Chemistry
  • 4th in the UK and 1st in Scotland for Mechanical Engineering, with 93% of students satisfied overall with their course
  • Economics – 92% of students were satisfied overall with their course
  • Civil Engineering – 91% of students were satisfied overall with their course
  • In the UK top 10 for Planning
  • 2nd in Scotland for Mathematics & Statistics, with 93% of students satisfied overall with their course

All NSS data is available on the Unistats website

Times Higher Education - '100 Under 50' World University Ranking 2015
  • 77th in the world, 10th the UK
  • 11th in the world and first in Scotland, based on the 'international outlook' indicator from THE World University Rankings. This indicator examines a university’s international student numbers, its percentage of international staff and the proportion of its research papers published with a co-author from at least one other country.

View the THE 100 under 50 universities 2015 rankings

The Times / The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018

We are a truly global university and named by The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide as International University of the Year 2018.

  • Overall, 39th out of 129 institutions in the UK and 5th in Scotland
  • 3rd in the UK for Building
  • 5th in the UK for Chemical Engineering
  • 8th in the UK for General Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and for Town & Country Planning & Landscape
  • Top in Scotland for Building, Chemical Engineering, and joint top in Mechanical Engineering
  • 2nd in Scotland for General Engineering, Town & Country Planning & Landscape
  • 3rd in Scotland: Art & Design, German, Mathematics
  • We are also ranked joint 11th in the UK and joint 1st in Scotland for graduate salaries 6 months after graduation.
The Complete University Guide 2018
  • 28th in the UK and 3rd in Scotland
  • We are ranked 1st in Scotland and 2nd in the UK for Building 
  • We are ranked in the top ten in the UK for 3 of our subject areas - Building (2nd), Chemical Engineering (8th), and Town & Country Planning (7th)
  • We are ranked in the top 25% in the UK for 10 subjects – Accounting & Finance, Art & Design, Building, Business & Management Studies, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Mathematics, and Mechanical Engineering

View the Complete University Guide league table 2018.

QS World's University Rankings 2017/18
  • We rank 312th in the world, 40th in UK and 7th in Scotland
  • The University was also ranked 15th in the UK top for our proportion of international students and 21st in the UK international faculty.

View the QS World University Rankings 2017/18.

QS Top 50 under 50 2015

A ranking of the world's top 50 universities established within the last 50 years.

  • 34th in the world, 3rd in the UK and 1st in Scotland.

View the QS Top 50 under 50 2015

QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017
  • Top 150 worldwide for Chemical Engineering, and Civil and Structural Engineering

  • Top 200 worldwide for Statistics & Operational Research (Actuarial Mathematics and Statistics)

  • Ranked in the top universities worldwide for 11 subjects: Linguistics; Computer Science and information Systems; Chemical Engineering; Civil and Structural Engineering; Electrical Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; Chemistry; Mathematics; Physics and Astronomy; Business and Management Studies; Statistics and Operational Research (Actuarial Mathematics and Statistics).  

View the QS Top University Rankings by Subject 2017.

Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014

REF 2014 named Heriot-Watt in the top 25% of UK universities, with 82% of our research ranked as world-leading or internationally excellent. We ranked 9th university in the UK and 1st in Scotland for research impact.

Find out more about our REF 2014 results.


The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017 listed the average starting salary for a Heriot-Watt graduate as £22,362 six months after graduation which places us 35th in UK.

95% of Heriot-Watt students are in employment or further study within six months of graduation

Academic Ranking of World Universities 2017

Heriot-Watt is ranked in the top 500 in the world (ranked 401-500) and in the UK top 40 (ranked 35-38) by the Academic Ranking of World Universities 2017.

We have been listed for nine subjects in the Global Ranking of Academic Subjects:  

  • In the top 75 worldwide for Telecommunication Engineering
  • In the top 150 for Civil Engineering. 
  • In the top 200 for Mathematics and Finance
  • In the top 300 for Electrical & Electronic Engineering and Mechanical Engineering
  • In the top 500 for Physics, Chemistry, and Environmental Science & Engineering.
The Economist: British university rankings

In 2017, The Economist released a league table which considers how much people earn five years after they graduate.  Heriot-Watt ranked sixteenth of 125 UK universities.

View The Economist rankings.