Aberdeen, University of


Overall ranking: Came 44th out of 124 in the Complete University Guide for 2014.

History: Founded in 1495, by 1497 it boasted the first chair of medicine in the English-speaking world. Four Nobel Prizes have been awarded for work carried out at the university. Picturesque and historic Old Aberdeen is now the main University site.

Address: Two sites in north-east Scotland's Aberdeen. Hills, countryside and miles of golden sandy beaches surround it. The medical school is based a mile and a half from the main campus.

Ambience: A 15th-century campus in a historic part of Scotland's bustling third largest city. Aberdeen is known in tourist circles as The Granite City, The Flower of Scotland, and The Silver City by the Golden Sands. Crammed with sparkling granite buildings, cosmopolitan Aberdeen has a thriving economy and buzzing town centre, as well as a beach ruled by stiff North Sea breezes and gutsy seagulls.

Who's the boss? Professor Sir Ian Diamond is principal and vice-chancellor, a former deputy vice-chancellor at the University of Southampton and PhD student at the University of St Andrews.

Prospectus: 01224 272 090 or view it online here.

UCAS code: A20

What you need to know

Easy to get into? The university does not use the UCAS points system, but entry requirements range from three Bs at Scottish Highers (two passes at A-level) for some courses to the minimum of five Highers at AAAAB (three As at A-level) for medicine.

Vital statistics: Currently holds 16,5000 students from over 120 different countries. One of the top Scottish universities and the fifth oldest in the UK.

Added value: Planned investment of £240m over the next ten years. A £24.5m sports facility called Aberdeen Sports Village opened in 2009 and a £57m new library followed in the summer of 2011. A £22m Aquatics Centre due to open in early 2014 will include a 10-lane 50-metre  pool and another 25-metre pool complete with full international standard diving facilities. Great course flexibility for those wishing to tailor their degree programmes.

Teaching: Ranked 79th out of 124 for student satisfaction with teaching.

Research: Placed 35th out of 124 in the Research Assessment Exercise.

Graduate prospects: Came 32nd out of 124 with 72.8 per cent entering graduate level employment.

Any accommodation? Yes. Catered halls cost between £144 and £164 per week, while self-catering flats start at £89 and reach £142 per week for an en-suite.

Cheap to live there? Not bad- private flats start at about £60 to £65 per week.

Transport links: Great road and bus links throughout the UK. Under three hours drive from Edinburgh and Glasgow, or take one of the hourly trains. Seven hours by train from London's King's Cross. There are cheap flights that touch down in London in just over an hour.

Fees: Scottish and EU students pay an annual tuition fee of £1,820 while those from the rest of the UK pay £9,000. Overseas students pay between £12,000 and £15,000 per year depending on the programme of study.

Bursaries: The university offers scholarships based on need and merit, as well as a number of subject-specific scholarships. For details visit www.abdn.ac.uk/undergraduate/scholarships.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Aberdeen boasts a huge variety of venues, with student-friendly bars and clubs galore in the city. On campus, there’s 'the Hub' student centre, with café bar and food court.

Price of a pint: £3 on average.

Sporting reputation: Fairly sporty-currently in joint 33rd place with Bournemouth University in the BUCS league.

Glittering alumni: James Naughtie, of Radio 4's Today; Alistair Darling, former Chancellor of the Exchequer; Nicky Campbell, radio and television presenter; Tessa Jowell, former Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office.

Alternative prospectus: Visit the University of Aberdeen's forum on The Student Room to ask questions of current students and gain an insight into what life's really like.

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