Rankings and Reputation

Science and Technology at Lancaster has a global reputation for delivering world-class education and research.  Our disciplines are consistently ranked amongst the best in the UK.

The Times and Sunday Times

The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020

  • Lancaster University ranked 8th overall
  • 6th for Geography and Environmental Sciences
  • Joint 6th for Physics and Astronomy
  • 8th for Chemistry
  • 8th for Mathematics
  • 10th for Psychology
  • Joint 10th for Biological Sciences
  • 14th for Mechanical Engineering
  • 1st for graduate prospects after 6 months in Chemical Engineering
  • 5th for graduate prospects after 6 months in Computer Science
Guardian University Guide

Guardian University Guide 2020

  • 2nd in the UK for Physics
  • 4th in the UK for Biosciences
  • 5th in the UK for Chemistry
  • 6th in the UK for Psychology
  • 7th in the UK for Geography
  • 12th in the UK for Mathematics
  • 1st for career prospects after 6 months in Geography
  • 1st for career prospects after 6 months in Psychology
  • 3rd for career prospects after 6 months in the UK for Computer Science & Information Systems
  • 3rd for career prospects after 6 months in Mathematics
  • 4th for student satisfaction in the UK for Mechanical Engineering
  • 5th for student satisfaction in the UK for Biosciences
  • 8th for career prospects after 6 months in the UK for Chemical Engineering
Complete University Guide

Complete University Guide 2020

  • Joint 5th in the UK for Biological Sciences
  • 6th in the UK for Physics and Astronomy, joint 4th for Student Satisfaction
  • 7th in the UK for Chemical Engineering
  • 8th in the UK for Geography and Environmental Sciences, 2nd for Graduate Prospects
  • 9th in the UK for Mathematics
  • 9th in the UK for Psychology
  • 11th in the UK for Chemistry
  • 16th in the UK for Mechanical Engineering
  • 20th in the UK for Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • 21st in the UK for Computer Science
Research Excellence Framework

Research Excellence Framework 2014

  • Over 80% of our research is world-leading and internationally excellent
  • Mathematics and Statistics is ranked joint fifth in the UK for overall research quality and 3rd in the UK for impact, putting them amongst UK's elite group of mathematics departments
  • The School of Computing and Communications is 12th in the UK for research in the category of Computer Science and Informatics
  • Engineering had 91% of their research activity rated as world-leading and internationally excellent with 100% world-leading and internationally excellent for impact
  • Lancaster Environment Centre is third in the UK for impact, sixth in the UK for providing a vibrant research community and 10th in the UK for producing world-leading research
  • The newly established department of Chemistry has achieved an outstanding result in its infancy by being rated 10th in the UK for research output quality, with just over one year to prepare submissions before the REF deadline
  • The Physics Department is ranked second in the UK for the amount of its research output judged to be 4* world-leading
  • Psychology has been ranked in the top 20 psychology departments in the UK for world-leading research publications and, overall, 75% of the research was found to be world-leading or internationally excellent, with 100% of it being of international standing
Lancaster University

Did you know?

  • We are home to one of the world’s largest centres for environmental research
  • We share our facilities with the Environment Agency
  • We are home to one of the government’s top environmental research laboratories, run by the Natural Environment Research Council’s Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.
  • Home to Hazelrigg Weather Station, the UK Meteorological Office’s Climatological Station Number 7236, making daily weather observations since 1966
  • Our chemistry laboratories have amongst the best analytical facilities in the world for environmental organic chemistry research
  • Home to the noble gas laboratory, the only lab in the UK with magnetic sector instrumentation focused specifically on environmental applications of noble gases
  • We have a long term relationship with Jari forestry who own large sections of the Amazon rainforest, giving us access to the tropical forests of South America
  • Some of our renowned physicists are researchers at CERN, Geneva, probing the fundamental structure of the universe
  • We are members of the Athena SWAN Charter, a scheme which recognises and celebrates good employment practice for women working in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in higher education and research
  • Our Psychology Department is home to one of the largest human developmental centres in the UK


Over £45 million has been invested in your environment to provide state-of-the-art facilities, including modern workshops and laboratories and highly specialised equipment.


We have invested over £30 million in laboratories, equipment, study and social spaces. Housed in the Faraday Building, these facilities opened in July 2016. Facilities include teaching laboratories, and software for undertaking quantum and molecular mechanical calculations.


This award-winning building opened in March 2015 and provides cutting-edge equipment and resources. These include mechanical workshops, a 3D printing suite and a chemical engineering lab.

Lancaster Environment Centre

We have 15 purpose-built glasshouse modules dedicated to plant science and ecological research. We have some of the world’s best analytical facilities for environmental research. Our noble gas lab is the only university lab in the UK with magnetic sector instrumentation.


We are undergoing an £11.4M refurbishment. This will equip the Physics department with state-of-the-art teaching labs and study spaces. The new IsoLab is a research facility for quantum technologies and ultra-low temperatures. Here we cool materials to some of the coldest temperatures ever measured on earth. Our research activities include particle physics, astrophysics, and cosmology.

Computing and Communications

Our Department has 5 dedicated undergraduate labs and open access to a 96 1.5 TB RAM virtualization cluster. We have a testbed for Software Defined Networking (SDN). Other facilities include digital fabrication facilities and eye-tracking equipment. We have industrial control systems to test security issues within these networks.

Mathematics and Statistics

The department is home to the Postgraduate Statistics Centre. We are a Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Postgraduate Statistics (HEFCE 2005). We provide modern teaching spaces alongside dedicated lecture theatres.


The Psychology Department is home to one of the largest developmental centres in the UK. We have a dedicated facility for behavioural testing and infancy research. In our observational laboratories we have a ‘moving wall’ laboratory. Other facilities include eye-tracking equipment and an infant EEG lab.

Quantum Technology Centre

We have a £4 million Class 100 cleanroom with state-of-the-art nanofabrication facilities. It also has a cryogen-free dilution refrigerator system and ultra-low temperature facilities. The centre also contains molecular beam epitaxial reactors and nanoscale microscopy characterisation facilities.


The Faculty of Science and Technology is fully committed to the University strategy in teaching and learning, research, and engagement, and welcomes the goals of being in the top 10 nationally and becoming a globally significant university.

Undergraduate programmes

We aim to grow the number of undergraduate students, both from home and overseas. This will be achieved via a mixture of new programmes, improvements to existing programmes, and better engagement, marketing and recruitment. Overseas student growth will be based on work with partners, improvements in the representation of the Faculty overseas, and the continued review of programmes to attract overseas students. The quality of undergraduate education and league table positions must be maintained and improved. We aim for the national top 10 in teaching, and where possible, the top 5.

Postgraduate programmes

The Faculty aims to increase overseas recruitment into Masters programmes and to develop appropriate Masters programmes for this purpose.  New Postgraduate Taught (PGT) programmes should be sought to attract external funding and enhance our reputation in the delivery of postgraduate education. Postgraduate Research (PGR) growth is a targeted objective for all departments. The Faculty has received funding from the University to increase Postgraduate Research numbers.  This depends on increased recruitment from other sources. Internal funding should be targeted to enhance our reputation in the delivery of PhD training. Externally funded doctoral training programmes should be actively sought, with an aim that each department should be involved in more than one bid for each call from a relevant research council, lead at least one bid, and be successful in at least one bid.


The Faculty aims to use our high-quality research capability to grow research income of at least 10% per year. This should be achieved in part by increasing the average FTE grant income for academic staff in each department. Further increases will be achieved by recruiting high-performing researchers and this should be a major focus in all departments. We aim to support and develop areas of high-impact research in all departments leading to internationally-leading outputs and a rolling set of impact cases, which will be reviewed annually. Departments should build relationships with leading universities which are wider than the individual researcher and which include centres or research groupings.

Business Partnership and Enterprise

The Faculty aims to increase the level and value of engagement with business, industry and other users, such that the return on internal investment made to support our partnerships benchmarks alongside that reported by larger research intensive universities. We will use our established reputation for working with SMEs regionally, to secure larger scale national-level investments targeting technology-based economic growth and international competitiveness. The Faculty will work towards guaranteeing the graduate level experience to over 50% of our undergraduate students.

Effective and efficient operations

To ensure that excellence is maintained in all areas we will develop and maintain appropriate and sustainably resourced models for technical and administrative staff within departments, and workload models for academic staff which enable academic activity. We will develop and maintain Faculty office support which is lean but enhances departmental activity and maintains the reputation of FST.

Development of sustainable facilities

The Faculty is aiming for a world-class research and teaching environment in both buildings and equipment. We will work closely with partner universities to achieve a reputation as holders and users of cutting-edge technical facilities and equipment. We will develop and implement mechanisms to sustain research facilities especially with support from external sources. The Faculty will, in addition, work closely with the University to consider new areas of investment which may be outside current departments or which may involve current departments in the development of new centres and interdisciplinary initiatives.