SHEFFIELD University is at the top of the tree, according to the people who matter most - its students.
Sheffield is rated best of the elite Russell Group of universities and the best in the Yorkshire and Humber region in the latest Times Higher Education Student Survey.
Overall the university was rated third best in the country, behind Dundee and Loughborough, and one place down on last year.
Sheffield Hallam came in at 34, up from 42 last year.
More than 14,000 students from institutions across the UK took part in the survey, which aims to show which universities offer the best all-round experience for young people.
Students were asked to assess 21 different attributes of their university including teaching, facilities and welfare support.
They judged Sheffield University to have the best social life - the joint top ranking alongside Loughborough.
And the university’s Student Union came top of the rankings for the third year running.
The Union offers more than 200 sports clubs and societies and underwent a £5 million refurbishment in October 2010.
It is soon set to benefit from a further £20 million investment designed to provide an even better experience for students, staff and visitors, while the new building now features an activity and sport zone for students to exhibit and perform their work.
Union president Thom Arnold said: “It’s really important that universities, particularly given the current climate, provide a great student experience.
“I’m delighted that Sheffield has continued to be recognised for the outstanding experience we offer our students. This fantastic achievement is only possible due to the great relationship between the university and the Students’ Union, and the real commitment from staff to work with students to ensure they get the most out of their time at university.”
University Vice-Chancellor Professor Keith Burnett said: “We’re thrilled to be ranked so highly for student experience. Choosing to go to a particular university is more than simply an investment in a future career.
“It also provides a life changing opportunity to broaden your horizons and develop socially and academically. Our excellent student facilities are home to a vibrant community and a student experience that is enriching to the whole person.
“We believe university life at Sheffield inspires students for the rest of their lives and we’re delighted that our students agree.”
Sheffield has nearly 25,000 students from 125 countries and was also named University of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards for its exceptional performance in research, teaching, access and business performance.