By Aoife Hardesty | Oct 11 2017On Sunday October 8th, the Sunday Times released their University of the Year Guide, a prestigious and detailed analysis of third level institutes across Ireland and the UK. A separate list is released for Ireland. In the University League Table for Ireland, UCD came in third place, out of 21 institutions. Trinity College Dublin and University College Cork placed first and second respectively. NUI Galway was named Irish University of the Year. Third level institutions were ranked based on graduate employment levels, progression rates between first and second year, spending on facilities, and student staff ratios amongst others. UCD receives a favourable write-up in the guide. The guide explains that UCD has a 90% progression rate from first year to second year and that 70% of students graduate with a 1:1s or a 2:1. UCD’s position as first in Ireland in 40/43 subjects offered as measured in the World QS rankings is mentioned. Student staff ratio in UCD is 17:8 which leaves UCD behind 14 other institutions. Trinity and UCC also had poor student staff ratios. Waterford Institute of Technology had the best ratio. UCD came second for spending on facilities. Sports facilities in UCD were rated 4 star. UCD’s modern sports centre and Olympic-size swimming pool might have won the university five stars if it were not for the lack of a running track. Graduate unemployment was measured at 5.6%, with UCD in 12th place for graduate employment overall. In the guide, UCDSU President Katie Ascough says the worst thing about UCD is that “Trying to get a place to stay near college is hard and expensive.” She recommends the SU’s Winging It in UCD guide “which tells you how to live cheaply here.” In the QS World University Rankings UCD is ranked in 168th place.