King's College London

King's College London

Infobox University
name = King’s College London

motto = Sancte et Sapienter (Latin: "With Holiness and Wisdom")
established = 1829
type = Public
endowment = £119.4 millioncite web |url=|title=King's College London Financial Statements, July 2007|work=King's College London Financial Statements, 2007 |accessdate=2008-07-29]
staff =
faculty = 5,149 [cite web|url=|title=About King's College London=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16]
principal = Professor Richard Trainor
head_label = Visitor
head = The Archbishop of Canterbury "ex officio"
students =
undergrad = 14,750cite web |url= |title=Table 0a - All students by institution, mode of study, level of study, gender and domicile 2005/06 |work=Higher Education Statistics Agency online statistics |accessdate=2007-03-31]
postgrad = 7,005
doctoral =
city = London
country = United Kingdom
campus = 5 throughout Central London
free_label =
free =
mascot = Reggie the lion
affiliations = University of London Russell Group 'Golden Triangle' EUA ACU
footnotes =

website = []

King's College London is a British higher education institution and co-founding constituent college of the federal University of London. [cite web|url=|title=About King's College London=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16] [cite web|url=|title=Royal Charter of King's College London=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16] Founded by King George IV and the Duke of Wellington in 1829, its royal charter is predated, in England, only by those of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge.There remains debate about which university holds the title as 'England's third-oldest'. "See: Third oldest university in England debate."] In 2008 King's was ranked 5th in the UK, 5th in Europe and 22nd in the world by The Times Higher Education Supplement.Cite web|url= |title=World University Rankings |year=2008 |publisher=The Times Higher Educational Supplement |author=The Times|accessdate=2008-10-09] King's is a founding member of the Russell Group and the Golden Triangle,cite web |url= |title=The future of the University of London: a discussion paper from the Provost of UCL |accessdate=2006-11-20] constitutes the biggest centre for the education of healthcare professionals in Europe, and houses five Medical Research Council Centres - more than anywhere else in the world. [cite web|url=|title=About King's College London=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16] Today, King's is arranged into nine Schools of Study, spread across four Thames-side campuses in Central London and one in Denmark Hill, South London. [cite web|url=|title=King's College London: Campuses=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16]


King's, so named to indicate the patronage of King George IV, was founded in 1829 in response to the founding of "London University", latterly known as University College London, in 1826. [cite web|url=|title=Foundation of the College=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] UCL was founded, with the backing of Jews, Utilitarians and non-Anglican Christians, as a secular institution, intended to educate "the youth of our middling rich people between the ages of 15 or 16 and 20 or later". [Citation | first = F.J.C. | last = Hearnshaw | title = The Centenary History of King's College, London, 1828-1928 | publisher = Harrap | year = 1929 | page = 38] The need for such an institution was due to the religious nature of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, which then educated solely the sons of wealthy Anglicans. [cite web|last = Banerjee, PhD.|first = Jacqueline|title = The University of London: The Founding Colleges|url=|accessdate = 2007-05-26] The foundation of UCL met with the disapproval of the establishment, indeed, "the storms of opposition which raged around it threatened to crush every spark of vital energy which remained". [cite book | last = MacIlwraith | first = W. | title = The Life and Writings of George Grote: An Essay | publisher = Barford & Newitt | date = 1884 | pages = 32] The Revd Dr George D'Oyly, rector of Lambeth and governor of Wilson's School in Camberwell, opposing the secular nature of the college, published an open letter proposing the formation of a competing institution. This would be of a religious, and more particularly Anglican, nature, one which would instil, "the services of religion performed as directed in our National Church". [Citation | first = F.J.C. | last = Hearnshaw | title = The Centenary History of King's College, London, 1828-1928 | publisher = Harrap | year = 1929| page = 38] This prompted Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, the then Prime Minister to chair a public meeting which launched King's on 21 June 1828. His simultaneous support for the Anglican college and the Roman Catholic Relief Act, which was to lead to the granting of almost full civil rights to Catholics, was challenged by George Finch-Hatton, 10th Earl of Winchilsea in early 1829. The result was a duel in Battersea Fields on 21 March that year.cite web |url= |title=Foundation of the College |work=King's College London - History of the College |accessdate=2006-11-20] Deliberately off-target shots were fired by both and neither was hurt.cite web |url= |title=Foundation of the College |work=King's College London - History of the College |accessdate=2006-11-20] "Duel Day" is still celebrated on 21 March every year, marked by various events throughout the College. [cite web|url=|title=Alumni celebrate Duel Day=King's College London|date=2007|accessdate=2008-01-23]

King's opened in 1831, very much in a similar academic guise to Oxford. Despite the intentions of its founders and the chapel at its heart of the buildings, the initial prospectus permitted, "nonconformists of all sorts to enter the college freely". [Citation | first = F.J.C. | last = Hearnshaw | title = The Centenary History of King's College, London, 1828-1928 | publisher = Harrap | year = 1929 | page = 80] Chemistry, English literature and Commerce were among the subjects offered. [cite web|last = Banerjee, PhD.|first = Jacqueline|title = The University of London: The Founding Colleges|url=|accessdate = 2007-05-26] At this time, neither King's, nor "London University" had the ability to confer degrees, a particular problem for medical students who wished to practice. Amending this situation was aided by the appointment of Henry Brougham, 1st Baron Brougham and Vaux as Lord Chancellor, who was chairman of the governors of "London University". In this position he automatically became a governor of King's. In the understanding that the government was unlikely to grant degree-awarding powers on two institutions in London, negotiations led to the colleges federating as the "University of London" in 1836, "London University" thus being demoted to the lower status of University College. [cite web|last = Banerjee, PhD.|first = Jacqueline|title = The University of London: The Founding Colleges|url=|accessdate = 2007-05-26]

King's professors played a part in scientific and social advances of the nineteenth century, through extending higher education to women, the working class, and by offering evening classes. Perhaps the most famous scholarly research performed at King's was the work by Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins that was essential to the discovery by James D. Watson and Francis Crick of the structure of DNA.

The first qualification issued by King's was the Associate of King's College, or AKC. The course, which concerns questions of ethics and theology, is still awarded today to students (and staff) who take an optional three year course alongside their standard degree. Successful completion entitles the graduate to bear the letters AKC after their name.

The College today is the product of mergers with a number of other institutions over the years, including Queen Elizabeth College and Chelsea College of Science and Technology in 1985, and with the Institute of Psychiatry and the United Medical and Dental Schools of Guy's and St Thomas' Hospitals. Florence Nightingale's original training school for nurses is now incorporated as the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery. Today, there are nine schools of study (see below).

King's College School was created as King's Junior Department at the time of the College's founding. Originally situated in the basement of the Strand campus, the School relocated to Wimbledon in 1897. King's College School is no longer associated with King's College London.

In 2003 the College was granted degree-awarding powers in its own right, (as opposed to through the University of London) by the Privy Council. This power remained unexercised until 2007, when the College announced that all students starting courses from September 2007 onwards would be awarded degrees conferred by King's itself, rather than by the University of London. The new certificates however still make reference to the fact that King's is a constituent college of the University of London.cite web |url=|title=Degree Awarding Powers Frequently Asked Questions 2 August 2005 |accessdate=2006-11-20 ] All current students with at least one year of study remaining were in August 2007 offered the option of choosing to be awarded a University of London degree or a King's degree.

Academic reputation

Infobox UK university rankings
The_Times = 10th
Sunday_Times = 12th
The_Guardian = 12th
The_Telegraph = 17th
The_Independent = 15th
THES_N = 5th
THES_W = 22nd
SJTU = 81st
G-Factor = 32nd
King’s has a strong academic reputation. According to The Guardian newspaper, King's, the London School of Economics, Imperial College London and University College London, each 'have international reputations that in this country only Oxbridge can beat'.cite web |url=,9830,1540597,00.html |title=Going it alone |work=EducationGuardian 2 August 2005 |accessdate=2006-11-20 ]

In 2008 The Times newspaper ranked King's 10th in the UK,cite web|url= |title=The Times Good University Guide 2008 |author=The Times |title=The Times Good University Guide 2008 |author=The Times|publisher=The Times |year=2008 |accessdate=2008-08-08] while in the same year King's ranked 12th in The Sunday Times,cite web|url= |title=The Sunday Times University Guide 2008 |author=The Sunday Times |year=2008 |accessdate=2008-08-08] 12th in The Guardian,cite web|url= |title=The Guardian University Guide 2009 |author=The Guardian |year=2008 |accessdate=2008-08-08] 5th in The Times Higher Education Supplement,Cite web|url= |title=World University Rankings |year=2008 |publisher=The Times Higher Educational Supplement |author=The Times|accessdate=2008-10-09] 17th in The Telegraph,cite web|url= |title=The Telegraph University League Table |author=The Telegraph |year=2008 |accessdate=2008-08-08] and 15th in The Independent.cite web|url= |title=The Independent University League Table |author=The Independent |year=2008 |accessdate=2008-08-08]

Internationally, The Times Higher Education Supplement QS World University Rankings places King's 22nd in the World,Cite web|url= |title=World University Rankings |year=2008 |publisher=The Times Higher Educational Supplement |author=The Times|accessdate=2008-10-09] while The G-Factor World Rankings puts King's 32nd in the world,Cite web|url= |title=G-Factor World Rankings 2007 |year=2007 |author=G-Factor World Rankings 2007|accessdate=2008-08-08] and the Shanghai Jiao Tong University Academic Ranking of World Universities places King's 81st in the world.Cite web|url= |title=Shanghai Jiao Tong University World Rankings 2007 |year=2007 |author=Shanghai Jiao Tong University|accessdate=2008-08-08]

According to the 2006 Times Good University Guide, several subjects taught at King’s, including Music, Dentistry, History, American Studies, Philosophy and Classics, are among the top five in the country.cite web |url= |title=Full Subject Tables |work=The Times|date=2006-05-27 |accessdate=2007-07-27] The College has had 24 of its subject-areas awarded the highest rating of 5 or 5* for research quality,King's College London Profile 2006] demonstrating excellence at an international level, and in 2007 it received a good result in its audit by the Quality Assurance Agency.King's College London Profile 2006] It is in the top tier for research earnings.

Financial Endowment

According to The Sutton Trust, in 2002 King's had the fifth largest financial endowment among UK universities, the fourth largest endowment per student, and the third largest endowment in England, surpassed only by Oxford and Cambridge. [ [ The Sutton Trust - University Endowments] , retrieved 10 August 2008] King's has an annual turnover of in excess of £400 million,cite web |url=|title=King's College London Financial Statements, July 2007|work=King's College London Financial Statements, 2007 |accessdate=2008-07-29] and has credit ratings of AA-/Stable/A-1 (Standard & Poor's). It is also in the top group of universities for research earnings with an income of £101 million (2004-05) from grants and contracts.


Strand campus

The Strand Campus is the founding campus of King's. Located next to Somerset House and sharing its frontage along the River Thames, most of the Schools of Humanities, Law, Social Science & Public Policy and Physical Sciences & Engineering are housed here. The Campus combines the Grade I listed King's Building of 1831 (designed by Sir Robert Smirke), the Byzantine Gothic College Chapel of the 1860s (designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott) with the Strand Building, completed in 1972 and believed to be designed by Troup & Steele. The Chesham Building in Surrey Street was purchased after the Second World War. The Macadam Building of 1975 houses KCLSU's activities and is named after King's alumnus Sir Ivison Macadam, first President of NUS. (Nearest underground stations: Temple, Covent Garden)

A National Trust-protected Roman Bath is situated on the site of the Strand Campus and can be accessed via the Surrey Street entrance. Hidden by surrounding College buildings, the Baths were mentioned by Charles Dickens in chapter thirty-five of David Copperfield. Aldwych tube station, a well-preserved but disused London Underground station, is integrated as part of the King's Strand campus. A Rifle Range is located on the site of a platform taken out of public service in 1917.

Guy's campus

Guy's Hospital, established in 1726, houses parts of the Dental Institute, School of Medicine and School of Biomedical Science. The founder and benefactor of the hospital, Thomas Guy, was a wealthy bookseller and a governor of St Thomas' Hospital. He lies buried in the vault beneath the 18th-century chapel at Guy's. Silk-merchant William Hunt was a later benefactor who gave money in the early nineteenth century to build Hunt's House. Today this is the site of New Hunt's House. The Henriette Raphael building, constructed in 1903, and the Gordon Museum are also located here. (Nearest underground stations: London Bridge, Borough)

Waterloo campus

Across Waterloo Bridge from the Strand Campus, the Waterloo Campus near the South Bank Centre consists of the James Clerk Maxwell Building and the Franklin-Wilkins Building, which was originally constructed as His Majesty's Stationery Office. King's acquired the building in the 1980s. The James Clerk Maxwell Building houses the Principal's Office, most of the central administrative offices of the College and part of the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing & Midwifery. The Franklin-Wilkins Building is home to the School of Health & Life Sciences that includes Pharmacy, the Department of Education and to part of the School of Nursing & Midwifery. The campus is also home to the London site of Schiller International University. (Nearest underground station: Waterloo)

St Thomas' campus

The St Thomas' Campus, facing the Houses of Parliament across the Thames, houses parts of the School of Medicine and the Dental Institute. The Florence Nightingale Museum is also located here. (Nearest underground station: Westminster)

Denmark Hill campus

Further south King's College Hospital, the Maudsley Hospital and the Institute of Psychiatry form the Denmark Hill Campus in Camberwell, the only campus not situated on the River Thames. As well as the IoP, parts of the Dental Institute and School of Medicine, and a large hall of residence, King's College Hall, are housed here. (Nearest underground station: Denmark Hill)


King's is coming to the end of a decade of restorative and refurbishment projects, with investment of over £500 million.King's College London Profile 2006] These include the Franklin-Wilkins Building at the Waterloo campus, The Maughan Library on Chancery Lane and the renovation of the chapel at the Strand campus at a cost of £750,000. The Strand Campus redevelopment won the Green Gown Award in 2007 for sustainable construction. The award recognised the ‘reduced energy and carbon emissions from a sustainable refurbishment of the historic South Range of the King's Building'.cite web |url= |title=King's wins top Green Award |work=King's College London |accessdate=2007-04-25] King's was also the recipient of the 2003 City Heritage Award for the conversion of the Grade II* listed Maughan Library.cite web |url= |title=King’s library wins prestigious heritage award |work=King's College London |accessdate=2007-04-25] Further renovation of the Strand Building is awaiting a decision on the acquisition of buildings in the adjacent Somerset House from H.M. Treasury. King's has been attempting to purchase Somerset House since the 1970s.


King's library facilities are spread across its five campuses; the College's estate also includes the library at Bethlem Royal Hospital. [ [ Official Site: Information Services Centres and Libraries] ] The collections encompass over one million printed books, as well as thousands of journals and electronic resources.

The Maughan Library and Information Services Centre

The Maughan Library is housed in the Grade II* listed 19th century gothic former Public Record Office building situated on Chancery Lane near the Strand Campus. The building was designed by Sir James Pennethorne and is home to the books and journals of the School's of Humanities, Law, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Social Science & Public Policy. It also houses the Special Collections and rare books. Inside the Library is the octagonal Round Reading Room, inspired by the reading room of the British Museum, and the former Rolls Chapel (renamed the Weston Room following a donation from the Garfield Weston Foundation) with its stained glass windows, mosaic floor and monuments, including an important Renaissance terracotta figure by Pietro Torrigiano of Dr Yonge, Master of the Rolls, who died in 1516.

Other libraries

*The Foyle Special Collections Library at Chancery Lane houses a collection of over 110,000 printed works as well as thousands of maps, slides, sound recordings and some manuscript material. []
*The Tony Arnold Library at Chancery Lane houses a collection of over 3000 law books and 140 law journals. It was named after Tony Arnold, the longest serving Secretary of the Institute of Taxation. In September 2001 the library became part of the law collection of Kings College London. [;n=3621]
*The Franklin-Wilkins Information Services Centre at the Waterloo Campus is home to extensive management and education holdings, as well as wide-ranging biomedical, health and life sciences coverage includes nursing, midwifery, public health, pharmacy, biological and environmental sciences, biochemistry and forensic science. []
*The New Hunt's House Information Services Centre at Guy's Campus covers all aspects of biomedical science. There are also extensive resources for medicine, dentistry, physiotherapy and health services. []
*The Weston Education Centre at the Denmark Hill Campus has particular strengths in the areas of gastroenterology, liver disease, diabetes, obstetrics, gynaecology, paediatrics and the history of medicine. []
*The St Thomas' House Information Services Centre holdings cover all aspects of basic medical sciences, clinical medicine and health services research. []
*The Institute of Psychiatry (IoP) Library is the largest psychiatric library in Western Europe, holding 3,000 print journal titles, 550 of which are current subscriptions, as well as access to over 3,500 electronic journals, 38,000 books, and training materials. []
*The Bethlem Royal Hospital Library contains a smaller collection to support students and staff working at the hospital. []

Schools of study

The nine Schools of study at King's are as follows:
*Dental Institute []
*Institute of Psychiatry []
*School of Biomedical & Health Sciences []
*School of Humanities []
*School of Law []
*School of Medicine []
*Florence Nightingale School of Nursing & Midwifery []
*School of Physical Sciences & Engineering []
*School of Social Science & Public Policy []

Undergraduate courses

King’s has over 14,000 undergraduates across around 180 academic degree programmes. [] At present, most use a 'course-unit' system, granting students the option of undertaking studies in more than one Department (within a School), more than one School (within the College), or even at more than one College or Institute (within the University of London). The Associate of King's College degree can be studied for alongside most of King's other courses.

Postgraduate courses

Over 7,000 of King’s students are postgraduates. The postgraduate courses offered at King's are divided into taught programmes [] and research programmes. [] The Graduate School provides over 240 taught programmes across nine academic schools as well as offering research degrees at MPhil and PhD level.

Students' union

King's College London Students' Union (KCLSU) is the oldest student union in London, founded just before University College London Union, and provides a good range of activities and services: over 50 sports clubs (including the Boat Club which rows on the River Thames and the Rifle Club which uses the College's shooting range located at the disused Aldwych tube station beneath the Strand Campus), 60 societies, a wide range of volunteering opportunities, 2 bars, 2 nightclubs, shops, eating places and a gym. A former President of KCLSU, Sir Ivison Macadam (after whom the Students' Union building on the Strand Campus has since been named) went on to be elected as the first President of the National Union of Students, and KCLSU has played an active role there and in the University of London Union ever since.

"Roar" is KCLSU's monthly magazine. It carries stories, reviews and features on a range of topics, reporting on Students' Union events, campaigns, clubs and societies, as well as coverage of the arts, books and fashion. "King's Bench", under the leadership of law students Ryan Wain and Feni Ajumogobia, has grown from strength to strength, challenging the dominance "Roar" once had in the media spectrum. [King's Bench website,] It is published tri-annually and welcomes contributions from all of King's students, either for publication in its printed edition, or on its [ website] . The College itself also publishes a range of periodicals reporting on various aspects of King's. [ [ Publications] ]

In the 1970s, the King's mascot, "Reggie", was buried upside-down in a pit near Waterloo Station, which was filled with concrete; only the tip of his tail remained visible. Later, he was lost for many years in the 1990s, and not recovered until he was found in a field. Having been restored at the cost of around £15,000, Reggie has been placed on display in the KCLSU Student Centre at the Strand Campus. Protected in a glass case, he is filled with concrete to prevent theft, particularly by UCL students who, prior to his burial and dumping, had also castrated him. (King's students had also stolen one UCL mascot, Phineas and, in an apocryphal legend, allegedly played football with the head of Jeremy Bentham's Auto-icon).

There are three "Reggies" in existence: the original, on display in KCLSU's Student Centre at the Strand Campus, a papier-mâché Reggie outside the Great Hall at the Strand Campus (pictured above), and a small sterling silver incarnation displayed during Graduation ceremonies.

Competition with UCL

Competition within the University of London is most intense between King's and University College London, the two oldest institutions. In the early twentieth century, rivalry was centred on their respective mascots. University College's was Phineas Maclino, a wooden tobacconist's sign of a kilted Jacobite Highlander purloined from outside a shop in Tottenham Court Road during the celebrations of the relief of Ladysmith in 1900.

King's later addition was a giant beer bottle representing "bottled youth". In 1923 it was replaced by a new mascot to rival Phineas - Reggie the Lion, who made his debut at a King's-UCL sporting rag in December 1923, protected by a lifeguard of engineering students armed with T-squares. Thereafter, Reggie formed the centrepiece of annual freshers' processions by King's students around Aldwych in which new students were typically flour bombed.

Although riots between respective College students occurred in Central London well into the 1950s, rivalry is now limited to the rugby union pitch and skulduggery over mascots, with an annual Varsity match taking place between King's College London RFC and UCL RFC.

Competition with LSE

Tensions between King's and the London School of Economics were ignited on 2 December 2005 when at least 200 students from LSE (across the road from the Strand campus) diverted off from the annual "barrel run" and caused an estimated £32,000 (The Beaver, LSE, 26 September 2006) of damage to the English department at King's.cite web |url= |title=Students in university rampage |work=BBC News 7 December 2005 |accessdate=2006-11-20] Principal Rick Trainor called for no retaliation and LSE Students' Union were forced to issue an apology as well as foot the bill for the damage repair. While LSE officially condemned the action, a photograph was published in The Beaver (the LSE SU Student Newspaper) which was later picked up by The Times that showed LSE Director Sir Howard Davies drinking with members of the LSE Students' Union shortly before the barrel run - and the "rampage" - began. King's appears to have been targeted, however, principally owing to its close proximity to LSE rather than any ill-feeling. There is also somewhat of a sporting rivalry between the two institutions, albeit to a lesser extent than with UCL.

Students' accommodation

King's has six halls of residence located throughout London. They are:

*Brian Creamer House & The Rectory (self-catered) at St Thomas' Campus
*Wolfson House (self-catered) at Guy's Campus
*The Great Dover Street Apartments (self-catered) at Guy's Campus
*The Stamford Street Apartments (self catered) at the Waterloo Campus
*King's College Hall (catered) at the Denmark Hill Campus
*Hampstead Residence (self-catered) in Hampstead

Intercollegiate Halls of Residence

King's also has the largest number of bedspaces in the University of London Intercollegiate Halls [ [ University of London - Intercollegiate Halls] ] . The halls are:

*Canterbury Hall, Commonwealth Hall, College Hall, Connaught Hall, Hughes Parry Hall and International Hall near Russell Square in Bloomsbury
*Lillian Penson Hall (postgraduates only) in Paddington
*Nutford House in Marble Arch


King's graduates have some of the highest average starting salaries of UK universities - The Sunday Times estimates the average starting salary is £20,672.cite web |url=,,8405-1246744,00.html |title=Table: Best graduate starting salaries |work="The Sunday Times" University Guide 2005 |accessdate=2006-11-20] King's graduation ceremonies are usually held in Southwark Cathedral and the Royal Festival Hall. Between 2005 and 2007, the Barbican Arts Centre was used during the renovation of the latter. From 2008, King's graduands will wear gowns designed by Vivienne Westwood and receive certificates by David Hockney.cite web |url= |title=The Daily Telegraph: A to Z of what’s hot for 2008|accessdate=2008-01-03] RADA is administered through King's, and its students graduate alongside members of the Departments which form the School of Humanities. As RADA does not have degree awarding powers, its courses are validated by King's. [cite web|url=|title=About RADA|accessdate=2008-08-23]

Notable alumni

King's alumni who have gone on to hold senior positions in British politics include former Chancellor of the Exchequer and Home Secretary Reginald McKenna, [cite web|url=|title=Reginald McKenna=Vanity Fair|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] former Foreign Secretary and co-founder and leader of the Social Democratic Party and of the re-formed SDP David Owen, Baron Owen of Plymouth, [cite web|url=|title=David Owen, Baron Owen of Plymouth|accessdate=2008-08-06] , former Minister of Defence Harold Watkinson, 1st Viscount Watkinson, [cite web|url=|title=Harold Watkinson, 1st Viscount Watkinson|accessdate=2008-08-06] two former Speakers of the House of Commons Horace King, Baron Maybray-King and James Lowther, 1st Viscount Ullswater, [cite web|url=|title=Horace King, Baron Maybray-King|accessdate=2008-08-06] [cite web|url=|title=Old Bethanians - James Lowther, 1st Viscount Ullswater|accessdate=2008-08-11] and John MacGregor, Baron MacGregor of Pulham Market former Leader of the House of Commons. [cite web|url=|title=John MacGregor, Baron MacGregor of Pulham Market|accessdate=2008-08-06]

In foreign politics King's alumni include two former Presidents of Cyprus, Tassos Papadopoulos and Glafkos Klerides,cite news | first=Antigone | last=Drousiotis | coauthors= | title=Tassos Papadopoulos - We thought we would change the World) | date=2008-02-10 | publisher= | url = | work =Phileleftheros | pages = | accessdate = 2008-08-05 ] [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Glafkos Ioannou Clerides|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] former Prime Minister of the Bahamas Sir Lynden Pindling, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Sir Lynden Pindling|accessdate=2008-08-06] former President of Seychelles France-Albert René, [cite web|url='s+college+london&source=web&ots=-EFUOC3BcS&sig=CF30soOKy9jKTgIqUuKHI0cDXjw|title=France-Albert René=Google Books|date=2007|accessdate=2008-01-27] and Sir Sydney Gun-Munro former Governor-General of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. [cite web|url=|title=Sir Sydney Gun-Munro|accessdate=2008-08-06] King's is also the alma mater of former President of the Indian National Congress Sarojini Naidu, [cite web|url='s+college+london&source=web&ots=qK-8uBSXNA&sig=tMqBxwiBI7vvEj8AksFFslKcV1U&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=7&ct=result|title=Biography of Sarojini Naidu|accessdate=2008-08-06] the First Lady of Syria Asma al-Assad, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Asma al-Assad|accessdate=2008-08-06] former Deputy Prime Minister of Canada Anne McLellan, [cite web|url=|title=Anne McLellan|accessdate=2008-08-06] co-founder of the People's Action Party and former Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore S. Rajaratnam, [cite web|url=|title=S. Rajaratnam|accessdate=2008-08-06] former Commonwealth Secretary-General and Guyanan Foreign Minister Sir Shridath Ramphal, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Sir Shridath Ramphal|accessdate=2008-08-06] Sierra Leonean Finance Minister Joseph B. Dauda, former Premier of South Australia Sir John Cockburn, and former Canadian cabinet minister Francis Black. [cite web|url=
title=Francis Black|accessdate=2008-08-06

In religion King's alumni include the Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu, [cite web|url=|title=Famous People: Desmond Tutu=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] , the former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey, Baron Carey of Clifton, [cite web|url=|title=King's Notable Alumni=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16] and the former Archbishop of Cape Town Njongonkulu Ndungane. In literature King's alumni include the poet John Keats, [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] the writers Thomas Hardy, [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] Sir Arthur C. Clarke, [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] W. Somerset Maugham, [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] Charles Kingsley, [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] C.S. Forester, [cite web|url=,,1000011159,00.html|title=C.S. Forester biography=Penguin Books|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] Sir Leslie Stephen, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Sir Leslie Stephen|accessdate=2008-08-06] Virginia Woolf, [cite web|url='s+college+london&source=web&ots=jcw8hy-ZxD&sig=Hk9KHj9o1c7zqROLSmvtTvyQBa8|title=Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse=Google Books|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] John Ruskin, [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] Radclyffe Hall, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Radclyffe Hall|accessdate=2008-08-06] Booker Prize winning novelist Anita Brookner, [cite web|url=|title=Anita Brookner|accessdate=2008-08-06] and the Whitbread Award winning author Alexander Masters. [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Alexander Masters|accessdate=2008-08-06] Moreover King's is the alma mater of the writer and philosopher Alain de Botton, [cite web|url=|title=King's Notable Alumni=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16] and of the dramatist Sir W. S. Gilbert, one half of Gilbert and Sullivan. [cite web|url=|title=Famous King's writers=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16]

King's is also the alma mater of the satirist Rory Bremner, [cite web|url=|title=King's Notable Alumni=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-16] botanist David Bellamy, [cite web|url=|title=Notable Alumni=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] journalist Martin Bashir, [cite web|url=|title=Martin Bashir: King's alumnus to anchor US TV news show=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] footballer and sports presenter Gary Lineker (did not graduate), [cite web|url=|title=Gary Lineker Biography|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-24] Queen bassist John Deacon, [cite web|url=|title=King's Notable Alumni=King's College London|date=2006|accessdate=2008-01-24] and of the pathologist Thomas Hodgkin discoverer of Hodgkin's disease. [cite web|url=|title=Famous People: Thomas Hodgkin=King's College London|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16]

King's alumni in academia include the Nobel laureates Max Theiler and Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins, [cite web|url=|title=Max Theiler|accessdate=2008-08-06] Joseph Needham, "Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins, O.M., F.R.S. (1861-1947)," "Notes and Records of the Royal Society of London", Vol. 17, No. 2. (Dec., 1962), pp. 117-162 [] ] the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge Alison Richard, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Alison Richard|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] Rector of Imperial College London Sir Richard Sykes, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Sir Richard Sykes|date=2005|accessdate=2008-01-16] Vice-Chancellor & Principal of the University of South Africa Barney Pityana, [cite web|url=|title=Barney Pityana|accessdate=2008-08-06] Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lancaster Paul Wellings, [cite web|url=|title=Paul Wellings|accessdate=2008-08-06] two former Principals of King's Henry Wace [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Henry Wace|accessdate=2008-08-06] and Alfred Barry, and former Vice-Chancellors of the Universities of Melbourne, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Martin Howy Irving|accessdate=2008-09-27] British Columbia, [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Kenneth Hare|accessdate=2008-08-06] Trinity College [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Kenneth Hare|accessdate=2008-08-06] and Bradford. [cite web|url=|title=Biography of Chris Taylor|accessdate=2008-09-27]

Nobel laureates

There are nine Nobel laureates who were either alumni or academics of the King's. [King's Nobel laureates -]
Nobel Prize in Physics
*1917 - Charles Barkla (Professor of Physics), for researches into X-rays and other emissions
*1928 - Sir Owen Richardson (Professor of Physics), for pioneering the study of 'thermionics'
*1947 - Sir Edward Appleton (Professor of Physics), for exploration of the ionosophere

Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
*1929 - Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins (Alumnus who went on to teach Physiology and Toxicology at Guy's Hospital), for research on vitamins and beriberi
*1932 - Sir Charles Scott Sherrington (Taught Systematic Physiology at St Thomas' Hospital), for researches on the nervous system
*1951 - Max Theiler (received his medical training at St Thomas' Hospital Medical School), for developing a vaccine for Yellow fever
*1962 - Maurice Wilkins (Researcher and Professor of Biophysics), for the discovery of the structure of DNA
*1988 - Sir James Black (Professor of Analytical Pharmacology), for the development of beta-blocker and anti-ulcer drugs

Nobel Peace Prize
*1984 - Desmond Tutu (Alumnus and Visiting Professor in Post-conflict Societies), for Peace in 1984 in recognition of his work as Secretary-General of the South African Council of Churches

Notable Academics

"See also "

King's has benefited from the services of academics at the top of their fields when they were at the peak of their careers, including, but not limited to:

Physical Science
* James Clerk Maxwell, inventor of Maxwell's equations - Professor of Natural Philosophy (1860-1865)
* John Frederic Daniell, inventor of Daniell cell - Professor of Chemistry (1831-1845)
* Sir Charles Wheatstone, developer of Wheatstone bridge principle - Professor of Experimental Philosophy (1834-1875)
* Sir Hermann Bondi, principal developer of the steady-state theory of the universe - Professor of Mathematics and Emeritus Professor (1954-1971)

Medical and Medicine
* Florence Nightingale, pioneering nurse - founded school of nursing at St Thomas' Hospital
* Joseph Lister, 1st Baron Lister, inventor of an antiseptic system - Professor of Clinical Surgery (1877-1893)
* Sir Astley Cooper, 1st Baronet, surgeon and anatomist at Guy's
* Thomas Hodgkin, discoverer of Hodgkin's disease - Demonstrator of Morbid Anatomy at Guy's Hospital
* Maurice Wilkins, co-discoverer of DNA structure Nobel laureate - Researcher at King's and later Professor of Biophysics
* Rosalind Franklin, co-discoverer of DNA structure - Researcher at King's
* Sir James Black, inventor of beta-blocker, Nobel laureate - Professor of Analytical Pharmacology (1984-)

* Sir Charles Lyell, 1st Baronet, geologist and writer of popular book "Principles of Geology (1830-33)" - Professor of Geology (1831-1833)
* Frederick Maurice, theologians and controversialists - Professor of English Literature (1836-1853)
*Leading historians Sir John Elliott, Conrad Russell, 5th Earl Russell, Richard Overy and Dame Janet Nelson have all spent long periods teaching at the College, as well as the renowed ancient-roman historian Howard Hayes Scullard, military historian Sir Michael Howard and the distinguished Byzantinists Dame Averil Cameron and Judith Herrin.
*Famous theologian and scientific writer Alister E. McGrath joined the Departmnent of Theology in September 2008.

Facts and Figures


*According to a Sunday Times survey, King's is 3rd in the UK both for graduate starting salary and graduate employability.
*Entry to King's is competitive: The Sunday Times rates it as the 6th most difficult UK university to get into.cite web |url=,,24709,00.html |title=The UCAS points system |work=The Sunday Times University Guide 2005 |accessdate=2006-11-20]
*According to the 2005 Times Higher Education Supplement league table, King's is positioned fourth in the UK in terms of staff-student ratio.
*In February 2006, UCAS revealed that, offset by a fall in applications for the vast majority of UK universities, King's received 4.0% more applications than in the previous year.cite web |url= |title=Complex pattern of student choice |work=BBC News 16 February 2006 |accessdate=2006-11-20]
*During World War II King's was evacuated out of London to Bristol University


The College has had 24 of its subject-areas awarded the highest rating of 5 for research quality, demonstrating excellence at an international level, and it has recently received a good result in its audit by the Quality Assurance Agency.

* The Guardian newspaper ranks the Departments of Dentistry and American Studies as the best in the country.
* The School of Medicine, which admits 450 (as of 2006, with plans to admit 550 from September 2007) undergraduates every year, is the largest in the UK; the School of Dentistry (160 undergraduates per year) is the largest in Europe.
* The Department of Music has strong ties with the Royal Academy of Music, the BBC, the British Library, ENO and the School of Oriental and African Studies. Authorities on Mozart (Cliff Eisen), Verdi (Roger Parker) and Wagner (John Deathridge) hold professorships; as do many active composers, including Silvina Milstein, George Benjamin and Robert Keeley.
* Unique to the UK is the top ranked Department of War Studies,cite web |url= |title=Department of War Studies |accessdate=2006-11-20] supported by facilities such as The Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives, the Centre for Defence Studies,cite web |url= |title=Centre for Defence Studies |accessdate=2006-11-20] and the King's Centre for Military Health Research.
* In 2007, for the second consecutive year, students from the School of Law won the national round of the Jessup International Law Moot Court. The Jessup moot is the biggest international mooting competition in the world. The King's team went on to represent the UK as national champions.cite web |url= |title=Law students repeat mooting success|accessdate=2007-04-26]
* King's Drug Control Centre currently holds the official UK contract for running doping tests on UK athletes, and will likely continue to do so for the 2012 Olympics, to be held in London.


King's has a wholly owned and dedicated technology transfer, enterprise, and innovation company known as King's College London Business Ltd: one of the most successful in the UK. King's Business is responsible for business development and commercialisation and for student admission and management of the university’s research grants and contracts. In collaboration with King's Business, King's actively encourages its staff to commercialise its research and teaching and as a result has given rise to a large number of spin-out companies based on academic research. These include Proximagen Neuroscience Plc, and Cerogenix Ltd.

King's in fiction and movies

*King's Department of Theology's library plays a widely fictionalized part in Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code.
*The Neo-Classical facade of the College, with the passage which connects the Strand to Somerset House terrace has been utilized to reproduce the late Victorian Strand in the opening scenes of Oliver Parker's 2002 film The Importance of Being Earnest.

See also

*'Golden Triangle'
*University of London
*Education in London
*Guy's Hospital
*St Thomas' Hospital
*King's College Hospital
*Maudsley Hospital
*Institute of Psychiatry
*Third oldest university in England debate
*King's College DNA


Further reading

* Hearnshaw, F. J. C. (1929) "The Centenary History of King's College London". George G. Harrap & Co.
* Huelin, G. (1978) "King's College London, 1828-1978".
* Jones, C. K. (2004) "King's College London: In the service of society".

External links

* [ King's College London website]
* [ King's College London Libraries]
* [ King's Conference & Vacation Bureau]
* [ King's College London 175th Anniversary website] - includes complete history

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