University of Dundee

University of Dundee

University of Dundee Details

  • Country : United Kingdom
  • City : Dundee
  • Acronym : Dund
  • Founded : 1881
  • Students (approx.) : 15000
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The University’s distinctive character comes from our ability to be both aspirational and down-to-earth. We are able to blend ground-breaking intellectual achievement with practical applications.

The University has seen many changes since it became an independent institution in 1967. This independence followed a 70 year relationship with the University of St Andrews, but our fundamental aim remains.


We have restated this aim in our Transformation Vision. It’s what we do today and it’s what we have always done. That is to:

“transform lives locally and globally through the creation, sharing and application of knowledge.”

Today we reflect this aim in many ways:

  • excelling in teaching and research;
  • contributing to the social, economic and cultural life of Scotland and the wider world;
  • shaping the future by solving important real-world problems.


We aim to become Scotland’s leading University. We want to be the best at what we do in what we choose to do, and be recognised internationally for the quality of our graduates and the impact of our research.

We are driven by the desire to solve substantial challenges, and will focus our efforts on three areas:

  • Using global resources in a sustainable way
  • Innovating through design
  • Improving health and wellbeing


We will work across subject boundaries; bringing expertise and different viewpoints. This will enable us to approach issues in new, challenging and productive ways. We equip our staff and our students with the means to create real-world impact, help solve global problems and transform lives.



  • Campus Shops: Location and list of shops available on campus seeCampus Map.
  • Chaplaincy: The chapel, coffee bar and lounge are available for use for functions, events, exhibitions, parties, conferences, seminars and lunchtime concerts.
  • Conference & Meeting Facilities: Facilities available for hire including a conference centre, training complexes, seminar rooms, foyers, and theatres.
  • DNA Sequencing Services – see The Sequencing Service, School of Life Sciences
  • Duncan of Jordanstone College Materials Shop (available for internal students and staff only).
  • IT Suites and IT Facilities (available for internal student and staff use only).
  • Library & Learning Centre: The LLC has six principal sites and 24/7 access to academic e-resources and the virtual learning environment. Students, staff and external members are welcome to use the LLC’s services.
  • Sports Facilities: The Institute for Sport and Exercise offers facilities for hire for sporting and other events e.g. company sports day; seminars; quad training sessions. Corporate membership packages are also available.
  • Video Conferencing Facilities.

Schools / Colleges / Departments / Courses / Faculties

School of Art and Design

  • Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design

School of Dentistry

  • Undergraduate Studies
  • Postgraduate Studies

School of Education and Social Work

School of Humanities

  • American Studies
  • Centre for Archive and Information Studies
  • English
  • European Studies
  • History
  • Languages
  • Philosophy

School of Life Sciences

  • Learning and Teaching

School of Medicine

  • Clinical Skills Centre
  • Cuschieri Skills Centre
  • Medical Education Institute
    • Centre for Legal & Forensic Medicine
    • Division for PG Medical Education
    • Division for UG Medical and Medical Sciences Education
    • MEI – Support

School of Nursing and Health Sciences

  • Undergraduate Studies
  • Post Qualifying

School of Science and Engineering

  • Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification
  • Civil Engineering
  • Computing
  • Electronic Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physics

School of Social Sciences

  • Accounting and Finance
  • Architecture
  • Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy
  • Centre for Water Law, Policy and Science (under the auspices of UNESCO)
  • Economic Studies
  • Environmental Science
  • Geography
  • Law
  • Management and Marketing
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Town and Regional Planning


The demand for a University in Dundee arose as part of a movement – common to many of the larger industrial centres of Britain at that time – for the extension of liberal education and the advancement of technical instruction.

In 1881, largely because of the foresight and generosity of Dr John Boyd Baxter and Miss Mary Ann Baxter of Balgavies – distantly related members of a wealthy and influential local family – University College, Dundee, was founded as an independent academic institution for

‘promoting the education of persons of both sexes and the study of Science, Literature and the Fine Arts’.

Notwithstanding its independence, the College had no power to award degrees and for some years students were prepared for the external examinations of the University of London. Amongst the earlier teachers were men of great eminence -including (to give them their later titles):

  • Sir William Peterson, the College’s first Principal, who was afterwards Principal of McGill University, Montreal;
  • Sir Alfred Ewing, later Principal of Edinburgh University;
  • Sir D’Arcy Thompson, the biologist;
  • Sir Patrick Geddes, the botanist and town planner;
  • and Sir William McCormick who was to become the first secretary of the Carnegie Trust, and later the first chairman of the University Grants Committee.

In 1897 University College became part of the University of St Andrews. This union served to give expression to local feeling that there should be a vital connection between the old and the new in academic affairs, and that a venerable institution in a small town and a modern establishment in a large city might well complement each other in a manner advantageous to both.

In 1954, consequent upon constitutional changes within the University of St Andrews, University College, with the gracious consent of Her Majesty the Queen, was renamed Queen’s College. These changes, which included the incorporation of the Dundee School of Economics in the College, though they improved its status substantially, left it as an integral part of the University of St Andrews. The rapidly increasing pressure upon university places in the years that followed and the evident need to expand the teaching and research facilities in Dundee, reinforced a local sentiment of long standing in favour of the elevation of the College to independent university status.

The Committee on Higher Education under the chairmanship of Lord Robbins recommended in its report to Parliament in October 1963 that

‘at least one, and perhaps two, of the new university foundations should be in Scotland’.

The Government approved the initiation of the processes necessary to create a university in Dundee, and in 1964 the University Court of the University of St Andrews appointed an Academic Advisory Committee, under the chairmanship of Mr R. B. McCallum, the Master of Pembroke College, Oxford, to advise on the constitution of the proposed University and on the academic developments to be undertaken in it. In 1966, on the basis of recommendations made by the Advisory Committee, the University Court and the Council of Queen’s College submitted a joint petition to the Privy Council seeking the grant of a Royal Charter to establish the University of Dundee. This petition was approved and, in terms of the Charter, Queen’s College became the University of Dundee on the first of August 1967.

In 1974 the University created a Faculty of Environmental Studies which validated degrees of the Schools of Architecture and Town and Regional Planning of Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art. By 1988 all degree courses offered at the College were validated by the University. This collaboration between the two institutions led to a formal merger of the College and the University with effect from 1 August 1994 with the College becoming a Faculty of the University.

In 1995 the University was successful in securing, on a competitive basis, the contract from the Scottish Office Health Department for pre-registration nursing and midwifery education in Fife and Tayside. This led to Tayside College of Nursing and Fife College of Health Studies becoming part of the University from 1 September 1996 as a single School of Nursing and Midwifery within the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry which was subsequently renamed, the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing.

In December 2001 the University merged with the Dundee campus of Northern College (of Education) to create the Faculty of Education and Social Work.

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