University of St Andrews

Template:Infobox Ancient Scottish University

The University of St Andrews was founded between 1410-1413 and is the oldest university in Scotland and the third oldest in the anglophone world. The University is situated in the town of St Andrews, on the eastern coast of Scotland.



The University was founded in 1410 when a charter of incorporation was bestowed upon the Augustinian Priory of St Andrews Cathedral. The University grew in size quite rapidly; St Salvator's College was established in 1450, St Leonard's College in 1511 and St Mary's College in 1537. Some of the college buildings in use today date from this period as does St Salvator's Chapel. At this time much of the teaching was of a religious nature and was conducted by clerics associated with the Cathedral.

During the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries the University underwent many changes. The distinctive red gowns which are still in use today were adopted in 1672 and towards the end of the seventeenth century a move to Perth was considered and eventually rejected. In 1747 St. Salvator's and St. Leonard's Colleges were merged to form the United College of St. Salvator and St. Leonard. During the nineteeth century student numbers were very low and the University having to close was a very real possibility. In the 1870s there were fewer than 150 students, and perhaps partly in response to this the University was, in 1897, strengthened by the foundation of University College in Dundee which became a centre of medical and scientific excellence. This affiliation ended in 1967 when the college, which had been renamed Queen's College, became a separate and independent institution as the University of Dundee. Today the university is growing rapidly and in relatively sound financial health, perhaps helped by what some students have argued are one of the highest hall of residence rents in the UK outside of London, though the University argues that the the residential system does not produce a surplus.




Arts and Media



The University has a strong link with America, with significant numbers of students from that country. (Approx. 10% of University in 2005). Benjamin Franklin, golfer Bobby Jones and (most recently) Bob Dylan have all been awarded honorary degrees. Also, three of the signatories of the 1776 American Declaration of Independence received degrees from St Andrews. It is also claimed that the dollar sign was invented at the University, and it is certain that the decimal point was.

Student organizations


  • Newspapers

There are several student newspapers in publication; the Saint, a fortnightly tabloid, is the oldest (although it has published under a number of titles, of which The Saint is the most recent) and has the highest circulation but there is also the Mitre, the self-styled quality paper, and the Chihuahua, an occasional magazine in a tabloid newspaper format, known for its humour. The Mitre is aimed primarily at a right wing student readership and focuses particularly on their activities. The Saint was recently closed down because of alleged racist and homophobic comments. The Saint began to publish again in February 2005.

  • Radio

On the 28th of February 2005 a number of St Andrews students launched the university's first FM station broadcasting over 3 km on the 87.7 MHz frequency. The station was granted a Restricted Service Licence (PDF) ( which allows for six hours of broadcast a day. The station hopes to relaunch in November if it can secure another licence. The station also broadcasts live on the internet (


See also

External links



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