The University of St Andrews (informally known as St Andrews University or simply St Andrews; abbreviated as St And, from the Latin Sancti Andreae, in post-nominals) is a British public research university in St Andrews, Fife, Scotland. It is the oldest of the four ancient universities of Scotland and the third oldest university in the English-speaking world (following Oxford and Cambridge). St Andrews was founded between 1410 and 1413, when the Avignon Antipope Benedict XIII issued a papal bull to a small founding group of Augustinian clergy.
St Andrews is made up from a variety of institutions, including three constituent colleges (United College, St Mary’s College, and St Leonard’s College) and 18 academic schools organised into four faculties. The university occupies historic and modern buildings located throughout the town. The academic year is divided into two terms, Martinmas and Candlemas. In term time, over one-third of the town’s population is either a staff member or student of the university. The student body is notably diverse: over 135 nationalities are represented with 45% of its intake from countries outside the UK; about one-eighth of the students are from the rest of the EU and the remaining third are from overseas — 15% from North America alone. The university’s sport teams compete in BUCS competitions, and the student body is known for preserving ancient traditions such as Raisin Weekend, May Dip, and the wearing of distinctive academic dress.
It is ranked as the third best university in the United Kingdom in national league tables, behind Oxbridge. The Guardian ranks first in the United Kingdom the Schools of Physics and Astronomy, International Relations, Computer Science, Geography, and Mathematics, whilst The Times and Sunday Times ranks the Schools of English, Management, Philosophy, Anatomy and Physiology and Middle Eastern and African Studies first and the Complete University Guide ranks Management, Divinity and Middle Eastern and African Studies first. The Times Higher Education World Universities Ranking names St Andrews among the world’s Top 50 universities for Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities. St Andrews has the highest student satisfaction (joint first) amongst all multi-faculty universities in the United Kingdom.
The four academic faculties collectively encompass 18 schools. A dean is appointed by the Master of the United College to oversee the day-to-day running of each faculty. Students apply to become members of a particular faculty, as opposed to the school within which teaching is based. The faculties and their affiliated schools are:
- Faculty of Arts: art history, classics, economics, English, film studies, history, international relations, management, modern languages, philosophy.
- Faculty of Divinity
- Faculty of Medicine
- Faculty of Science: biology, chemistry, computer science, geography and geosciences, mathematics, physics and astronomy, psychology and neuroscience.
Certain subjects are offered both within the Faculties of Arts and Sciences, the six subjects are: economics, geography, management, mathematics, psychology and sustainable development. The content of the subject is the same regardless of the faculty.
Their policy is to take into account academic potential as well as achievement in examinations as they work towards making the University of St Andrews more accessible.
References which evidence clear and justifiable potential are treated as important factors.
Find out more about entry requirements at St Andrews online.
The University of St Andrews is known across the globe as a world leader in education. Their consistently high rankings in both national and global league tables place them within the top 1% of world universities.
Most subjects offered by the university are often ranked within the UK’s top 10, and many fight for the top place in national rankings.
The university persistently ranks as one of the top universities in the UK for teaching and the quality of the academic experience it offers students, according to the National Student Survey 2015; the tenth year in succession that St Andrews performed strongly in the annual measure.
One of the university’s unique strengths is that it provides research-led teaching: students are taught by the people who write the textbooks, the people at the coal-face of research and discovery.
The University of St Andrews benefits from a relatively small student body in comparison to many universities; meaning class sizes are often small.
The university Careers Centre offers impartial and objective advice and guidance.
Their careers advisers have sector and school-based specialisms, all are experienced at advising undergraduate and postgraduate students and graduates on any career-related topics.
Resources include drop-in and bookable appointments with advisers, a Job Shop vacancy service, access to alumni networks, support for student enterprise, summer internship schemes, advice on postgraduate study, and in depth support for international students including visa information and support.