King’s College London – Acceptance Rate, Ranking, Notable Alumni, and More

Established in 1829 by King George IV, King’s College London is a founding college and member institution of the federal University of London. This public research university is also one of the oldest universities in England. 

Due to its impressive history and academic programs, King’s is regarded as part of the golden triangle of universities located in Oxford, Cambridge, and London. Today, King’s educates over 29,000 students from over 150 countries worldwide.

Academics at King’s are broken into nine different faculties, each with its own departments and research centers. The school is the largest European center for medical teaching and biological research. The Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery, the world’s first nursing school, was established in 1860. 

King’s alumni and staff include 14 Nobel laureates and pioneers of discoveries from DNA structure to stem cell cloning. 

Students at King’s can participate in many sports clubs within the British Universities & Colleges leagues across the nation. 

In addition, King’s College London offers over 300 societies. Academic, entrepreneurship, common interest, culture, spirituality, creativity, and volunteering are just some of the focuses of the many organizations on campus. 

The King’s Think Tank, the first student-led and largest organization of its kind, has over 2,000 members. This initiative organizes discussions in seven different policy areas for the benefit of NGOs, politicians, and other policymakers. 

King’s College London Acceptance Rate

King's College London
Fil Brit, King’s College London Bush House Building 3, CC BY-SA 4.0

Each year, King’s receives thousands of applicants for the school’s various undergraduate programs. In 2019, they accepted approximately 10% of students, meaning that one out of every ten undergraduates was granted admission. Due to its high-achieving and exceptional applicant pool, selection is highly competitive. This acceptance figure varies by program and changes from year to year. 

Business, biomedical science, law, and medicine tend to receive the most number of applications each year, leading to highly competitive admissions. These departments typically admit even fewer than 10% of students because they have a limited number of seats to fill. 

To be considered for selection, students first have to meet the school’s entry requirements. These are put in place to ensure that admitted students have the best chance of success while studying at King’s. 

Students who meet and exceed the entry requirements for their program will have the best chance of acceptance. 

Conditional offers to the university are based on three A-level subjects. Depending on the major, King’s has non-academic requirements such as aptitude tests, interviews, and work experience alongside testing qualifications. 

King’s College London Ranking

Among nationwide and even global rankings, King’s College London is considered among the top universities. King’s ranks in the top seven UK schools in prominent academic rankings, including QS, Times Higher Education, US News, and more. 

This impressive placement is due to the robust programs, international education, and academic reputation. Many of the subjects offered by King’s College London rank within the top 10 nationally, including business, law, psychology, biological sciences, and more.

Research is core to education at King’s College London. Through innovative and interdisciplinary research, the community aims to make the world a better place. 84% of the research at King’s is considered “world-leading” or “internationally excellent.” As one of the world’s top research universities, King’s has been recognized as #7 globally according to the 2014 Research Excellence Framework.

Along with academics and research, King’s College London stands out for its actions to support a greener world. The Times Higher Education Impact Rankings assess how universities support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. King’s makes an effort to improve sustainability on campus and through its teaching. 

Since October 2017, 100% of the electricity purchased at the university comes directly from wind energy. Comparing research, stewardship, outreach, and teaching, King’s places #11 in the world in the Impact Rankings.

Notable Alumni

As a physical chemist, researcher, and respected expert in crystallography, Dr. Rosalind Franklin’s renown started with the two years she spent conducting research at King’s College London. 

She worked as a Research Fellow and became famous for her work in X-ray crystallography detailing the structure of DNA. Along with her transformative work with DNA molecules, Rosalind Franklin’s determination inspires the next generation of scientists.

Dr. Dev Pragad, CEO of Newsweek Magazine, is radically transforming the communication business. He implemented a digital-focused strategy which quickly grew to 60 million users across all platforms in less than three years. Shortly after earning his PhD from King’s in 2009, he entered the digital publishing business. Pragad is an investor and entrepreneur, mentoring those aiming to change the digital media landscape.

Virginia Woolf studied at King’s College London from 1897 to 1902, taking classes in Greek, Latin, German, and history. As a writer and feminist icon, Woolf produced many famous pieces of writing on women and fiction. Her most famous works include Mrs. Dalloway, To the Lighthouse, Orlando, and A Room of One’s Own. 

In order to honor Woolf, King’s has named a building in her honor at the Strand Campus and waxwork commissioned from artist Eleanor Cook.


For new students starting in September 2021, students based in the UK pay home fees of £9,250 per year. Due to UK government rules, students from the EU are no longer eligible for home fee status. This amount may change during future years of study based on the needs of the university. 

To keep tuition costs reasonable, the annual increase is capped at 5% each academic year. Students pay for their first module upfront as a deposit to secure their seat in the class. 

Most home undergraduate students do not have to pay tuition fees while studying at King’s College London. Instead, they can take out student loans that are repayable after graduating. In addition, most continuing full-time home undergraduates will be able to apply for grants up to £4,000

King’s College London is dedicated to assisting students in extraordinary circumstances, including those with children, low income, or disabilities. In addition, undergraduates studying abroad can apply for a grant to cover some travel expenses.

The cost of tuition for international students is approximately £15,000, although this amount varies from program to program. Specific programs, such as law, medicine, and business, can incur additional fees. To help pay for their education, these students can apply for bursaries.

King’s College London Acceptance Rate for International Students

King's College London
KiloCharlieLima, Maughan Chancery Lane, CC BY-SA 4.0

King’s College London is fully committed to being a multicultural, international university and seeks to admit students from around the globe. 

As one of the top ten schools in the UK, King’s College London receives approximately 5,000 international applications for undergraduate programs with an estimated acceptance rate of 13%. The number of applications each year increases due to the school’s renowned academics and research.

In the past five years, the university has recorded acceptance rates ranging from 13-15% in the last five years. This value changes based on the number of international students interested in studying at King’s and the specific program a student applies to. International applicants must meet the same qualifications as UK students in order to be admitted to the school.

International students will not be alone at King’s College London; the pupils here represent over 150 countries! The student body includes over 1,300 students from East Asia and 2,000 from North America. 

Thanks to decades of global education, King’s has plenty of resources for international students, from English preparation courses to flexible course formats. The Student Advice Service team at King’s hosts welcome and orientation programs for new international students. For questions ranging from immigration to living in the UK, King’s has a dedicated staff of student advisers for international students.

Is King’s College London Right For You?

King’s College London is best for students who hold similar priorities. They must be committed to creating positive change in communities not only in London, but worldwide. Whether through research, community service, or working in industry, King’s students impact the world around them. 

In every profession, King’s graduates become the next generation of change-makers by challenging the norm. This can be seen in the school’s alumni, including Florence Nightingale, Virginia Woolf, Desmond Tutu, and more. 

Along with service to society, King’s students are truly global citizens. The university fosters an international perspective through diverse opportunities. Student organizations, study abroad programs, and a global campus community contribute to the range of perspectives available for students. 

Those not interested in working with and learning from people of different backgrounds are not a good fit for King’s College London.

Students at King’s build on a history of excellence by working with influential researchers. They have access to the latest thinking and technology. It is important for students to dedicate themselves to learning from those around them.

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