The rankings collated annually by British dailies 'The Times' and 'Sunday Times' found that Cambridge has a "much better graduate employment rate than Oxford six months after graduation and slightly higher levels of student satisfaction".

Competitor Oxford University has slipped from its joint first spot to No 2 in a "dead heat" competition between the two best known universities in the world.

"In terms of reputation and international standing, there is nothing to choose between the two universities institutionally, although at individual subject level there remain important differences worth exploring depending on your choice of degree," the guide said in reference to Oxford.

The top 5 for 2015 is completed by Prince William and Kate Middleton's alma mater University of St Andrew's in Scotland at No 3, followed by two London universities - University College London and London School of Economics and Political Science - in fourth and fifth place consecutively.

University of Westminster, headed up by?NRI industrialist Lord Swraj Paul as Chancellor, also makes the cut at No 112 in the guide of 123 universities in the UK.

The list is prepared based on a range of criteria such as entry standards, student-staff ratios, services and facilities spend, completion rates, Firsts and 2:1s and graduate prospects data supplied by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (Hesa) which provides a system of data collection, analysis, and dissemination in relation to higher education in the whole of the United Kingdom.

The original sources of data for these measures are data returns made by the universities themselves to Hesa.

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