The University of London  – a centre of excellence

The University of London, which was established in 1836, is one of the oldest and largest universities in the United Kingdom. It is a federation of 19 Colleges and 11 Institutes. The Colleges and institutes are:


  • Birkbeck College 
  • King’s College London
  • London School of Economics and Political Science
  • Queen Mary
  • School of Oriental and African Studies
  • University College London. 
  • Central School of Speech and Drama
  • Courtauld Institute of Art
  • Goldsmiths, University of London Heythrop College
  • Imperial College London
  • The Institute of Cancer Research
  • Institute of Education
  • London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
  • Royal Academy of Music
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • The Royal Veterinary College
  • St George’s, University of London
  • The School of Pharmacy
  • Institute of Advanced Legal Studies
  • Institute of Classical Studies
  • Institute of Commonwealth Studies
  • Institute of English Studies
  • Institute of Germanic and Romance Studies
  • Institute of Historical Research
  • Institute of Musical Research
  • Institute of Philosophy 
  • Institute for the Study of Americas
  • Warburg Institutes


In 1858 the University established its External Programme especially for students who could not study full time for a University of London degree in the conventional way and whose only option was to study at a distance. Although the study experience of External students is different, the University makes no distinction in the quality of the award they gain. All graduates, whether they attended one of the University’s Colleges or Institutes or studied through the External Programme, are awarded a University of London degree. The University has an excellent reputation in the UK and internationally. The quality of its degree and research activities is widely acknowledged and respected, and many graduates have gone on to occupy influential positions in government, business, industry and other professions all over the world.

How is the International Programme managed?

The International Programme manages the majority of the University’s distance learning provision. It has two components: an administrative function based mainly at the central University offices in Senate House, and its academic management. Administrative and academic staffs liaise closely on a day-to-day basis.

The Programme’s administrative role includes such matters as marketing and promotion, student admission, registration, preparation and despatch of study materials, co-ordination of examinations, notification of results, and the management of degree development.

The academic direction and integrity of the various degrees and diplomas is the responsibility of the academic staff. There are opportunities to meet with University teachers at a series of intensive weekend courses in London.  Many independent institutions in the UK and worldwide offer face-to-face teaching or correspondence tuition. High standards are maintained because these are the same academics that teach and assess campus-based students. This principle of equivalency is enshrined in the University’s Statutes:

‘Candidates granted degrees and other awards shall have attained the same academic standard irrespective of mode or place of study or examination.’ [Statute 66 (2)]