Queen's University Belfast is one of the leading universities in the UK and Ireland with a distinguished heritage and history. Founded in 1845 as Queen's College Belfast, they became an independent university in 1908. Today, the University is a member of the Russell Group of UK research intensive universities, combining excellence in research and education with a student-centred ethos.



Queen’s offer a world-class education that prepares the students for leadership and citizenship in a global society.

The inspiring alumni comprises outstanding scholars, Nobel Prize winners - such as Seamus Heaney and David Trimble - and influential leaders who are making an impact in Northern Ireland and across the globe.

The students enjoy being educated by world-leading academics working at the forefront of their disciplines and a significant investment in the student experience has resulted in high levels of student satisfaction.

Over 96% of Queen’s graduates are in employment or further study six months after graduation; the graduates are dominating senior leadership positions in 80 of Northern Ireland's top 100 companies, and making a difference in over 120 countries.


The university currently has staff and students from over 80 countries, helping to create a multicultural and vibrant campus. They are joining a university that is committed to attracting, retaining and developing the best global talent within an environment that enables them to realise their full potential.

An innovative, welcoming and inclusive place to work and study, Queen’s is a leader in gender equality and diversity. Queen´s is one of the UK’s most successful universities in the Athena SWAN initiative which promotes gender equality and career progression. The university currently has two Gold, eight Silver and five Bronze departmental awards, as well as an Institutional Silver.


At Queen’s they translate ideas, academic teaching, research and professional expertise into action, resulting in impact that serves society at home and across the world in life-changing ways. The social charter outlines their signature projects that focus on serving communities at home and abroad.

The university is a signatory to the UN Accord, which recognises the key role that global universities have in nurturing a culture of sustainability and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 through research and education.


Queen’s University Belfast was founded by Royal Charter in 1845.

Founded by Queen Victoria, the Queen's University in Ireland, was made up of three Queen's Colleges - in Cork, Galway and Belfast. Although it was the first University in the north of Ireland, Queen's drew on a tradition of learning which goes back to 1810 and the foundation of the Belfast Academical Institution.

Its collegiate department, which provided University-style education, closed with the establishment of Queen's and four of its professors and many of its students transferred to the new college.

The most significant date in the early years of the University's life was 1908 when the three Queen's Colleges, and the Royal University (which replaced the Queen's University in Ireland in 1879), were dissolved and replaced by the Queen's University of Belfast and the National University of Ireland.

As an independent institution, governed by its own Senate, Queen's flourished. Increasing student numbers and new staff were accommodated in a number of new buildings and the academic programme increased in range. Arts, Science, Law and Medicine were supplemented by Faculties of Commerce, Applied Science and Technology, Agriculture, and Theology.

Today, Queen's is one of the leading universities in the UK and Ireland, providing world-class education underpinned by world-class research.


Queen’s is a comprehensive institution offering degree programmes across 3 faculties:

  • Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Engineering and Physical Sciences
  • Medicine, Health and Life Sciences

99% of the research environment is assessed as world-leading or internationally excellent so, regardless of which degree program you wish to pursue, you know you will be studying in an area with greatly esteemed teaching and research staff.

The university offers some very competitive professional/vocational programmes such as Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy and Law. Additionally, they have a range of specialist areas that are particularly strong at QUB, such as:

  • Astrophysics
  • Conflict Transformation
  • Cyber Security
  • English Literature & Creative Writing
  • Food Security
  • Global Security and Borders
  • Human Rights Law
  • Leadership for Sustainable Development
  • Music & Audio Engineering


The Queen’s campus is situated in leafy South Belfast, 15 minutes walk from the city centre. They are based in Belfast – the capital city of Northern Ireland. Belfast is a city of arts, culture, great food and beautiful landscapes. Situated on the banks of Lough Neagh and surrounded by the Belfast Hills, the city is full of parks and green spaces.

Campus is a picturesque place too and Queen’s has consistently been ranked as one of the top 10 most beautiful Universities in the UK. The University has a brilliant mix of architecturally impressive 19th century buildings and very modern facilities too.

The University has over 200 clubs and societies so there is plenty to get involved with during your studies. They offer everything from K-Pop club through to the Alternative Dispute Resolution Society! Of course they have all the traditional sports clubs that you would expect to find too and you can play from beginners level through to the British University Championships.

The student accommodation is all within walking distance of the campus – either in city centre or in south Belfast.


The university offers a network of support services dedicated to helping you get the most from your time at Queen’s, looking after your health, emotional wellbeing, education, study needs, financial security and future career. They offer a wide range of services including:

  • Careers, Employability and Skills
  • International Student Support – immigration and visas 
  • International Scholarships
  • IT Training and Support
  • Resilience, wellbeing and counselling support
  • Disability and learning support
  • University Healthcare Centre
  • Students Union Advice Centre
  • University Language Centre – all students can take language classes


The university is home to one of the best student sport centres in the UK, an art-house cinema, a specialist music facility called the ‘Sonic Arts Research Centre’, a film studio, media lab, a moot court for law students, a financial trading hub, an InterSim medical training facility for medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and nursing students and many other world-class spaces. Our McClay Library is award winning and combines the best features of a traditional library with the latest technology…it also has views over Belfast’s botanic gardens so offers plenty of healthy break time opportunities!

They have a state of the art student centre and Student’s Union called One Elmwood which was opened in 2022 – offering a fully integrated student hub at the heart of campus.


The university offers a range of different university accommodation across 9 different sites. You can tailor your accommodation to your living preferences and budget. They offer individual studios, shared apartments and bigger student houses. The university accommodation is guaranteed for international.


Queen’s has 4,500 international students from over 80 countries worldwide. The student body and teaching staff is diverse with many languages, nationalities and faiths on campus. They provide an inclusive and welcoming home for students from all backgrounds and have an international curriculum. They partner with leading universities all over the world and offer their students many opportunities to engage with thought leaders at the top of their field.


The Global Opportunities team provide short and longer-term study abroad opportunities. Each year the University runs ‘Go Global’ week in which you can hear about the brilliant range of opportunities to go overseas. You can study across Europe, China, USA, Canada, Australia and many other locations around the world! They offer options for both study and internships abroad.


At the university they are dedicated to making employability an unmissable part of the student experience at Queen’s. Their expert team are committed to ensuring every student has access to the right experiences to develop future-ready skills.

The staff work to expose students to the right connections and expertise they need during their time at Queen’s and into their early career. They offer support with all aspects of career-planning and decision-making.

Many of degree programmes offer internship opportunities and each School will offer career focused opportunities and support.


Belfast is a hidden gem in the UK. Located in Northern Ireland it brings both Irish and British culture together in a unique blend, making it distinct from any other city in the UK. So, what is Belfast known for? Like much of the island of Ireland, it is famed for its music, literature and arts.

The city has been designated as a UNESCO World Music City and is bursting with nightlife and fun. Alive with clubs, pubs and music, the city has a packed schedule of festivals and events including Belsonic and Belfast Vital.

A city with innovation at its heart, Belfast is ranked in the world’s top 10 Digital Economies of the Future. There are almost 900 international companies located in Northern Ireland, making Belfast the second most successful city in the UK (after London) for attracting US trade.

There’s plenty happening outside the city too, including the famous filming locations for the HBO series Game of Thrones, the awe-inspiring Giant’s Causeway, voted the UK’s best Heritage Attraction, and the Mourne Mountains, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty canonised as CS Lewis’ Narnia. 31 blue flag beaches line the Northern Ireland coastline and there are plenty of clubs and societies (like the surfing club) that support students in availing of all the stunning locations on their doorstep!


  • Queen’s University has an incredible history and heritage – it is older than Northern Ireland!
  • Queen’s is a Russell Group University, with many subject areas ranked in the top 200 in the world
  • The University is beautiful and offers world class facilities in which students can thrive, such as the new One Elmwood Student Centre, opened in 2022
  • Belfast is one of the most fun, affordable and low cost cities in the UK – it will help your student budget go much further
  • The University has a range of generous scholarships for international students



The information on this page has been submitted by the higher education institution itself. If you want to know more, get in touch and one of our student advisors will answer all your questions!

Across the Pond is this university’s official representative for selected countries around the world which, depending on where you are from, means we can help you apply to its courses as well as with gathering all the documents needed to submit an application. We can normally offer a speedier route to help you since the institution is hugely popular and receives enquiries from all around the world on a daily basis. We also have close ties with the university’s international facing staff and as such can explain your grades, your academic background and the educational system in your home country. Our partner universities appreciate that students who apply through Across the Pond get the help they need, not only in terms of submitting the application and supporting documents, but also with everything leading up to arrival in the UK, such as student accommodation, visa and funding information as well as preparing for departure to the UK.

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Facts about Queen´s University Belfast

Established: 1845

Student population: around 25,000

Number of international students: 4,500+  

Location: Queen’s University’s historic campus is an urban setting just a 15-minute walk from Belfast’s vibrant city centre. Situated within three designated conservation areas, walking or cycling around the area is a pleasant experience. Numerous shops, cafes and restaurants are nearby, as are Botanic Gardens, the Ulster Museum, the Lyric Theatre, and Queen’s Physical Education Centre.  

City population: around 400,000

Closest airports: George Best Belfast City Airport and Belfast International Airport

Areas of expertise                       

  • English & Creative Writing
  • Global Food Safety and Security
  • Law (various specialisms)
  • Cybersecurity and Secure Information Technology
  • Politics and International Relations
  • Conflict Transformation and Social Justice
  • Global Health & Medicine
  • Business and Management Studies


Notable alumni

  • Seamus Heaney, Nobel Prize for Literature, 1995
  • Mary McAleese, President of Ireland, 1997-2011
  • Professor James Francis Pantridge, Inventor of the portable heart defibrillator
  • Liam Neeson OBE, Actor
  • Lisa McGee, Creator of ‘Derry Girls’ TV show
  • Stephen Rea, Actor
  • Peter Rice, Designer and engineer
  • John Stewart Bell, Influential 20th-century scientist
  • Anita Sands, Director of Symantec
  • Tan Sri Datuk Rafiah Salim, Director of NAM Institute for the Empowerment of Women


QUeen´s University Belfast rankings

13 Queen’s subject areas are in the top 200 in the world (QS World Rankings by subject 2022):

  • Pharmacy and Pharmacology (=55)
  • Performing Arts (51 – 100)
  • English Language and Literature (101 - 150)
  • Nursing (51-100)
  • Social Policy and Administration (101 – 120)
  • Archaeology (101 - 150)
  • Law (101-150)
  • Chemical Engineering (151-200)
  • Civil and Structural Engineering (151 – 200)
  • Electronics and Electrical Engineering (151 – 200)
  • History (151 – 200)
  • Politics and International Studies (151 – 200)
  • Medicine (151-200)


Biology, Queen's University Belfast

Just a year ago, my life took a 180-degree turn. I packed three suitcases and a backpack and left home to embrace the unknown and pursue my dream. Uncertainty and fear intertwined with deep excitement, as it was the first time I left my hometown… Read more

History, Queen's University Belfast

I chose to study my Master’s in Public History at Queen’s University Belfast. I’d studied Belfast previously and was always interested in its modern history of conflict, reconciliation, and public commemoration. So, that led me to… Read more

Queen's University Belfast

I recommend anyone looking to study or work abroad to travel to Belfast and attend Queen’s. The academics are excellent, the people are very welcoming, and you can immerse yourself in a new culture.

Belfast is highly accessible.… Read more

Languages, Queen's University Belfast

I fell in love with Queen’s and Belfast! Both are incredibly welcoming for students. I concentrated on British and Irish history at my home university and knew I would have fantastic opportunities to study Ireland, in-depth, at Queen’s.… Read more

Literature, Queen's University Belfast

My name is Camila, I am 26 years old and I am from Montevideo, Uruguay. I graduated as a Translator of English and am currently doing a Masters in Literary Studies at Queen's University Belfast (Northern Ireland). I had always wanted to… Read more

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